Film: 'Bittoo Boss'; Cast: Pulkit Samrat and Amita Pathak; Director: Supavitra Babul; Rating: ***
The sheer relief of watching a gifted new actor play, for a change, a good hearted, idealistic hero who sets off to make blue films and ends up sorting out problems between couples, is enough to make us not wince at the jagged edges which stick out here, there and everywhere in the narration.
The presentation could have done with some more finesse, and a lot better packaging. But hey, the heart is in the right place.
Indeed 'Bittoo Boss' for a large part ambles forward with no seeming purpose. It opens with an elaborate Punjabi wedding which, quite vocally, pays its homage to Sooraj Barjatya. Lording over the 'shaadi ka dhoom-dhaam' is our endearing videographer Bittoo who shoots, in his words, not weddings but emotions, not bodies but the feelings within.
As played by debutant Pulkit Samrat, Bittoo is bit of a brat, but enormously sincere and idealistic. We don't get heroes like this anymore.
The script, written as a series of episodes representing 'Adventures In The Life Of A Small-Town Videographer', gives the protagonist a chance to romance sleaze and then pulls him out of the morass just in time.
This is a film that's breezy but never stormy in its impact. It works because of the director's sincerity of intent. While most filmmakers today prefer to dwell on the dark side of heroism, debutant director Supavitra Babul doesn't shy away bringing in a shiney idealism into Bittoo's character.
Pulkit, despite an unreal hairstyle, comes across with endearing sincerity.
Expressive earnest and quite impressive in his interpretation of the character's embarrassing, he is a welcome addition to Hindi cinema's hero club.
What brings down Pulkit's performance as a videographer who would rather break bones than bend self-rules, is the scattered narrative. More often than not, Bittoo Boss rambles aimlessly through what looks like episodes of a television serial strung together in a movie form. Also, the central performer hardly gets support from the other actors who all seem to be briefed to behave like Punjabi middle-class freeloaders.
Curiously, leading lady Amita Pathak's dialogues and demeanour seem directly derived from Anushka Sharma's 'Band Baaja Baaraat'. Amita's character is a part of that recent movement in our cinema whereby small-town North Indian girls are shown to be self-willed, headstrong, defiant and slightly wacky...Kangna Ranaut in 'Tanu Weds Manu' and Anushka in 'Band Baaja Baaraat' define that movement.
'Bittoo Boss' is filled with some genuinely endearing moments where the protagonist comes close to losing his stubborn values but retrieves them just in time.
This film is an uneven but likeable experience held together by the debutant Pulkit's performance. He's undoubtedly a star in the making.
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