A comely young thing ensnares unsuspecting young men, leads them on, and decamps with everything : broken hearts, hurt egos and wedding loot. ‘Dolly Ki Doli’ has a great idea, and starts off well, but then falls into a familiar trap– of a single-track leading lady piloting a half-baked plot.
Dolly (Sonam Kapoor), pronounced Doleee by her lovelorn beau (Rajkummar Rao), who is not a miss goody-two-shoes and who wants to be her own person, should have been a Bollywood triumph. It’s so hard to get films top lining heroines, and even harder for them to find the right story to do so. Sonam Kapoor is in almost every frame, and should have filled them all. But the plotting and the treatment of the character shows up Sonam Kapoor’s limitations: she is good-natured, but not versatile.
The con is conducted with an eye on detail, but one cries out to be challenged. Dolly comes in carrying a potion on her ‘suhaagraat’, said drink which has the power to provide deeper shut eye than is natural. In goes the liquid, out come the snores, and off goes the bride. First time, funny haha, but many times over, plain tiresome.
The film has an overpowering Haryanvi-Punjabi vibe, so you need to keep your ears peeled ( and protected, when it comes to the shrieky Puran Singh). The best of the ensemble is Rajkummar Rao, who does wet-eyed dolefulness brilliantly. So is Ayyub, whom the film doesn’t know what to do with. He is left trailing. Samrat and Sharma make up the rest of the gaggle of guys-who-woo Dolly : the former plays a cop who knows a secret, and the latter wants her to put out, but both are bland.
Ultimately, ‘Dolly Ki Doli’ is neither biting social comment, nor unfettered fun.