'Meri Padosan' - A director's guide to a terrible film (IANS Film Review; Rating: *)
Film: 'Meri Padosan'; Cast: Sarwar Ahuja, Sanjay Mishra, Saadhika Randhawa, Snehal Dabhi, Heena Tasleem and Mushtaq Khan; Director: Prakash Saini; Rating: *
Do some filmmakers aspire to make something so insipid and listless that it would mean an instant end to their movie-making career? Or is it a case of some surplus money that they wish to do away with in the quickest possible time?
One look at 'Meri Padosan' and your belief in this thought is strengthened. There have been bad films and there will be bad films. But in the list of some ridiculous stories that have ever been told, this film would certainly walk away with top honours.
Picture this: A couple (played by Sanjay Mishra and Saadhika Randhawa) arrive in a Mumbai 'basti' from a small town to make a living. After the mandatory sermonizing around 'Mumbai is the city of dreams etc.', it is explained that nothing can ever go wrong in the life of this couple.
The 'padosan' goes on to find some 'padosis' for her as Sarwar Ahuja (a Subhash Ghai launch in 'Khanna & Iyer'), Snehal Dabhi and another actor masquerading as a comedian arrive as her neighbours.
Now begins the story of this 'padosan' as her entire house is visible from all angles. Whether it is her verandah, living room or even bedroom, the whole house is visible to these three young men who decide to shoot a 'real film' for a reality show competition.
Not that the idea is really kicking enough for the audience, but you still look forward to whether the director would be able to pull this one off.
However, the man in the picture here fails as he stumbles in his endeavour. Though there are a couple of stray scenes that do bring a smile on the face, 'Meri Padosan' completely fizzles out post interval.
Sarwar, who is the director of this 'real film', starts writing the script in the life of Sanjay Mishra and Saadhika Randhawa by sowing seeds of suspicion between the couple.
The worst is yet to come with the introduction of one more male lead who is roped in by Sarwar as a paying guest. The job profile of this wannabe actor (both on screen and off screen) is to get close to Saadhika, who he fondly calls 'bhabhiji', and make the entire neighbourhood believe that the two are an item.
If this really cheap and below the belt tactic is not bad enough, then wait for the moments to follow as the film progresses.
Suddenly, this so-called comedy turns into a full-blown dramatic affair as misunderstanding creeps into the mind of Sanjay. He starts banging things around the dinner table and the wife ends up screaming - 'You have started suspecting me because you love me. This is the reason why you have become insecure!'. Oh ok, and we thought it was something else!
Well, as it happens in all Hindi movies, it all ends well in 'Meri Padosan' as well. A simple 'sorry' gets everything back on track and the couple realizes that it was all a prank after all.
But the movie isn't over yet! The director, in his endeavour to make one of the most unbearable films ever made, extends 'Meri Padosan' by another 10 minutes. All of a sudden you get to see Sanjay and Saadhika becoming hot shot stars who are much sought after in Bollywood after the super success of their 'real film'.
And Sarwar, who does actually show promise in front of the camera, becomes a director and his three friends settle down in their life as well.
An extended sequence of events finally brings the film to an end after an agonizing two-and-a-half hours!
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