There are points in 'Mere Brother Ki Dulhan' when you can't really remember whether the girl yapping away on screen is still Dimple Dixit or has she suddenly turned into Geet Dhillon. In case you need your memory jogged, Geet Dhillon was the ultra-talkative, mildly insane, all-around good girl character, played to perfection by Kareena Kapoor in 'Jab We Met'. Dimple, on the other hand, is the name of Katrina Kaif's character and the titular 'Dulhan' of 'MBKD'.
The difference between Geet and Dimple, of course, is in the actresses who have played them. Though she was just as loony, Kareena's Geet still dwelled in a measure of sanity. Katrina's Dimple, on the other hand, is completely over the top, never pausing to take a breath even, as she moves from one plan to another, all in an effort to land her love, in this latest mad-cap rom-com adventure from the Yashraj stable. Of course, it is rather subjective, depending on the tastes of the audience, whether this is a good thing or bad.
Though it also stars Imran Khan and the 'Tere Bin Laden' find, Ali Zafar, it is evident from the outset that 'Mere Brother Ki Dulhan' is a film that belongs wholly and solely to Katrina Kaif, who relishes her moment in the sun here, playing it up to her effervescent best.
Kaif stars as Dimple Dixit, a firecracker of a girl, a London-bred Delhi-based rocker and a rebel, who has finally given in and fallen in line with the family policy of arranged marriage. She has also been sought out as his bhabhi-to-be by Kush Agnihotri, a filmy AD played by Imran Khan. Kush, you see, has been assigned the duty of finding him a 'dulhan' by his London-based 'bhaisaab', err, brother, Luv, Ali Zafar, who has just fallen out of a relationship with his girlfriend, Pyali, played by Tara D'Souza and simply wants to settle down, now.
The trouble in this plot kicks in right at the start, when Kush and Dimple meet each other, and realise they've met before, five years ago. Kush is familiar with Dimple's crazy ways, but approves her for his brother anyway, only to realise eventually that he is falling in love with her himself. Thereon, the film proceeds in the most predictable manner, until it reaches its, yes, predictable end. What helps the film along though, is the fact that until it gets there, the performances and humour at hand, delivered periodically in healthy doses, keeps one in good spirits.
Though the debutant director and story writer Ali Abbas Zafar (not to be confused with the film's actor) is pedaling a rather predictable script here, what helps his cause is the fact that he doesn't feel the need to delve into any unnecessary melodrama. Though the film is kitted out with a serious father (Parikshit Sahni as Luv and Kush's colonel father), and an autistic brother (Arfeen Khan, as Dimple's brother Ajju), Ali Abbas, thankfully, stays away from employing these tropes in a clichéd manner, and instead, keeps the film quite uniformly light-hearted throughout, with very few serious moments in between.
Still, while he doesn't get into the pitfalls of melodrama, he does succumb to taking digs at and paying tributes to his own Bollywood heroes, quoting everything from 'Sholay', to 'Wanted' and references the likes of Aamir Khan, Shah Rukh Khan, Salman Khan, and even Madhubala. Novel in parts, this shtick on Ali Abbas' part quickly gets tedious, though.
What works brilliantly for 'Mere Brother Ki Dulhan', though, are the superb performances that the leads deliver here. While Katrina is already spoken for, it is the chemistry between her and Imran that really makes the film shine. Content to play the foil, the straight man to Katrina's looniness, Imran seems quite comfortable in the passenger's seat here. He is also comfortable in his character as Kush, getting back to his traditional, goody-two-shoes roles, and though a bit dull next to Dimple, his Kush redeems himself. The find of the film, though, is the title's 'Brother', Ali Zafar, who proves his talents here again after 'Tere Bin Laden'. Zafar is brilliantly consistent as Luv, pitch-perfect in his scenes with Kaif and Imran both.
Performances apart, the film is also a triumph for Sohail Sen and Irshad Kamil, who team up to deliver one of this year's best soundtracks for 'Mere Brother Ki Dulhan'. Ali Abbas deserves kudos for the way he uses his music in the film, choreographing and placing them to perfection. Of the soundtrack, 'isq risk' and the title track, along with Katrina's introductory song, 'dhunki', all deserve mentions.
If you are looking for a mentally-stimulating cinematic experience, 'Mere Brother Ki Dulhan' isn't a watch for you. Though some may use the term to clobber director Ali Abbas Zafar on the head, what he has managed to deliver with 'Mere Brother Ki Dulhan', with Katrina Kaif as its centerpiece, is pure, unadulterated candy-floss entertainment. Though there may be holdouts to the notion, 'Mere Brother Ki Dulhan' is certainly a great one-time watch. For, of course, while it may not be everyone's cup of tea, who can contend that candy floss doesn't taste great?