Mr. and Mrs. Mahi

At a traditional match-making rendezvous, the dad taunts his son by exaggerating his achievements. The girl Mahima (Janhvi) lives with her parents, Dad (Purnendu Bhattacharya) and Mom (Yamini Das)

Starring: Rajkummar Rao, Janhvi Kapoor, Rajesh Sharma, Kumud Mishra, Rajesh Sharma, Purnendu Bhattacharya,

Zarina Wahab.

Direction: Sharan Sharma

Yet again, Rajkummar Rao makes a valiant attempt to salvage a script. A film-maker takes to cricket at his own risk. Except ‘Lagaan’ and ‘M.S. Dhoni — the Untold Story,’ film-makers have been as successful with films on the subject as the country was with one-day cricket in the pre-Kapil Dev era. A good script, a strong story and a directorial capacity to keep the audience engaged are primordial requirements. Cashing on the IPL season is woefully inadequate to tell a contemporary ‘Abhimaan’ on the cricket field. The clash of egos in matrimony, on performance and acceptance by the public, by Hrishikesh Mukherjee is one of the best common outings of Jaya and Amitabh. At an emotive level ‘Mr. and Mrs. Mahi’ makes only cosmetic changes. It must be, however, stated that the film is structurally completely different. As different as music is from cricket.

Disgruntled sportspersons often turning into coaches has been dealt with before. All in the commercial precincts: ‘Chak De India’, ’Dangal’, ‘Ghoomer’, ‘Jhund’, ‘Saala Kadoos’, ’Sultan’ have mirrored the ashes of one becoming the blooms of the other. Placing this square peg in the round hole is what Sharan Sharma offers with the backing of Dharma Productions. The entire two-hours-and-a-near quarter is dedicated to the world of cricket — women’s cricket. It takes us to Rajasthan (flavour of the season till one final evening) and to an aspiring cricket crazy player who doesn’t make the great. When he finds another door to cricketing fame, he laps on to it but selfishly. The film-maker has a reasonable story in place but the translation fails to evoke both adrenaline or pathos. There lies the failure.

Mahi (Rajkumaar Rao) is a young cricketer who is disappointed at not being selected. His pleading with coach Benny Dayal (Rajesh Sharma) goes in vain, what adds insult to injury is when he is the butt of ridicule from his father Hardayal Agarwal (Kumud Mishra) who runs a local sports store in Jaipur. His brother, Sikander (Arjit Taneja), is a pop singer and a rage on social media.

At a traditional match-making rendezvous, the dad taunts his son by exaggerating his achievements. The girl Mahima (Janhvi) lives with her parents, Dad (Purnendu Bhattacharya) and Mom (Yamini Das). She is a medical graduate whose academic career is consistently brilliant. Mahima is impressed with the honesty of Mahi and agrees to marry him. Her professional choice is an extension of her father’s dreams. Soon Mahi (he) inspires/cajoles Mahi (she) to kick away her medical profession and take to cricket where he would coach her. He sees this as his ticket to fortune, fame and public gaze. When he finds no place in her success story, he feels legitimately cheated and frustrated till he is convinced by his mother (Zarina Wahab).

While the likes of Zarina and Rajesh Sharma deliver what little is asked of them, it is a delight to watch Kumud Mishra who never disappoints. Janhvi does — that is if you had expectations in the first place. She is working on her skill sets, but the speed is visibly inadequate. Rajkumaar Rao is predictably brilliant, like with ‘Srinath’, in the earlier scenes he looks a tad too old to carry off the youngster. However, as the frustrated individual aching for success, he is brilliant. ‘Mr. and Mrs. Mahi’ is worth seeing only for Rajkumaar Rao and Kumud Mishra.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle )
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