Monday, 25 October 2021

“Ujda Chaman” tests your patience

BOLLYWOOD: Chaman Kohli, 30, teaches Hindi at a Delhi University College. He is in search of a life partner, and a full head of hair, but both are proving elusive.

This could have been the start of a working comedy with desired serious undertones. Is premature balding the death of self-esteem? For some people, it could be the end of everything, so sure, Chaman’s (Singh) strained face makes some kind of sense, at least in the beginning.

But to have to watch that strain play across a largely expressionless face for two interminable hours taxes all your patience. Not only is the protagonist’s approach to his receding hairline painful, his family, comprising of dad, mom and younger brother (Kumar, Kapoor, Arora respectively), is loud and annoying.

Which bunch of students jeer at their teacher’s state of hair, or the lack of it? Do undergraduate students at a premium DU college have nothing better to do? If the point of the film is to tell us that external appearances have nothing to do with our inner selves, it needed to have done it better. Much, much better.

The dialogues are questionable. ‘Ladka pure hai’ is taken to mean that the lad has had no sex, and repeating it several times over is meant to funny. ‘Virgin’ kya hota hai’, is another sample. If that kind of crass, tasteless stuff makes you laugh, well, here’s the perfect film for you.

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