Enjoy the Honeymoon!
By MovieTalkies.com, 23 February 2007
Finally, a film with multiple stories running in parallel, which gets it right, at least partly. Honeymoon Travels Pvt. Ltd. succeeds in entertaining as well as making a point or two about relationships, without getting preachy or boring. The editing (hats off to Aarti Bajaj) is crisp and keeps the film tight at 2 hours, in spite of there being 12 characters and 6 couples. First time director, Reema Kagti, does falter in places, but it is clear that she has a novel narrative style and will only improve with each subsequent film. Coincidentally this may be the first time where the director, editor, executive producer (Zoya Akhtar) and D.O.P (Deepti Gupta) have all been females!
The story is about 6 couples who embark on their honeymoon to Goa. Each couple is quirky in its own way and very distinct right from the beginning. Oscar (Boman Irani) and Nahid (Shabana Azmi) are the old timers whose spouses have passed away and circumstances have brought these two together. This story takes a look at non-conventional romance as well as certain basic adjustments which we imagine to be extremely difficult at that age. Both performances are good, although we wonder if the wig on Boman was really required as were the clichéd Catholic mannerisms. Another story involves Hitesh (Ranvir Shorey) and Shilpa (Dia Mirza) which pretty much ends half way as Shilpa elopes with her secret love. This story is a bit too clichéd with Hitesh being a typical male chauvinist, a characteristic unfortunately associated most commonly with Gujaratis. However neither performance is really great, nor is this track to well developed. The Partho (Kay Kay Menon) and Milly (Raima Sen) track is the most believable, relevant and enjoyable overall. The screenplay (credited to Reema Kagti) in this case takes a look at the adjustments in a love marriage, due to differences in their families and resulting perspectives and not really in the couples. This track is one which many will be able to associate with more so because both Kay Kay and Raima are brilliant in their performances. Partho's accidental intoxication leading to the Sajanji Vaari Vaari number and Milly's parasailing scenes are two of the funniest in the film. The most unusual couple is Bunty (Vikram Chatwal) and Madhoo (Sandhya Mridul) who both tie the knot for the wrong reasons. However the culmination of their story is a bit odd and far fetched especially for a woman like Madoo who belongs to today's generation of independent women. Vikram is passable although Sandhya is true to the character and gives a believable performance. Next we have Vicky (Karran Khanna) and Pinky (Ameesha Patel), probably the most irritating of the two couple thanks to Pinky's over the top nature, performed an equally over the top manner by Ameesha. Although Vicky's confusion and attraction to Bunty could have been believable, the way the story culminates is uninteresting and also half baked. Last but not least are Aspi (Abhay Deol) and Zara (Minissha Lamba) the absolutely perfect Parsi couple. Although neither is too convincingly Parsi, both otherwise are perfect in their story is more of a metaphor to prove that it is humanly impossible to be a couple which never fights at all. Both Minissha and Abhay are extremely convincing and although Abhay has always been looked on as being a strong actor, Minissha proves once again that her debut performance in Yahaan was no fluke as she takes to the character of Zara perfectly and her mannerisms and voice modulation are perfect. Their dance number Pyaar Ki Yeh Kahani is simply mesmerizing and something we rarely see in Hindi films.
Some of the stories are definitely better written than others in the radio jockey flashbacks work in some cases and are weak in others. However what is clear is that Reema has taken an unconventional narrative style and that is what keeps the viewer engrossed. The track of the driver's nephew could have easily been done away with and in terms of the music, only Sajanji Vaari Vaari and Pyar Ki Yeh Kahani stand out, both in terms of Vishal Shekhar's composition as well as choreography and picturization.
Of the recent films which have tried multiple stories like Salaam-E-Ishq and Just Married, this one is definitely the pick of the lot. If nothing else, it will remind many of their own honeymoon.