Hasee Toh Phasee review: It doesn’t have is a coherent story

'Hasee Toh Phasee' seems to have everything going for it. A likeable leading man, a crackerjack heroine. What it doesn’t have is a coherent story,

Rating: 2 out of 5
Written by Shubhra Gupta | New Delhi | Updated: February 8, 2014 4:11 pm
Moview Reviews: 'Hasee Toh Phasee'.  It seems to have everything going for it. The smart, varying sensibilities of co-producers Karan Johar and Anurag Kashyap, a likeable leading man, and a crackerjack heroine. What it doesn’t have is a coherent story. Movie Review: ‘Hasee Toh Phasee’. It seems to have everything going for it. The smart, varying sensibilities of co-producers Karan Johar and Anurag Kashyap, a likeable leading man, and a crackerjack heroine. What it doesn’t have is a coherent story.

Movie Review: Hasee Toh Phasee

Cast: Parineeti Chopra, Sidharth Malhotra, Adah Sharma, Manoj Joshi, Sharat Saxena, Neena Kulkarni

Director : Vinil Mathew

Batty girl meets sweet fellow. Is it cute? Yes, that first ‘mulaqaat’ is. And then? Then ‘Hasee Toh Phasee’ wanders about figuring out whether it wants to be a contemporary rom com, or a Gujju soap, or a 60s melodrama, or all of the above. This confusion confounds the film, fronted by the most talented female lead working in Bollywood right now, and makes her much less fun than she can be. And that holds true for the film, too.

It is most exasperating, because ‘Hasee Toh Phasee’ seems to have everything going for it. The smart, varying sensibilities of co-producers Karan Johar and Anurag Kashyap, a likeable leading man, and a crackerjack heroine. What it doesn’t have is a coherent story, and that’s why none of the refreshing bits add up.

Meeta (Parineeti Chopra) is the kind of girl who uses her mind to invent things. Gasp. Mind, in a Bollywood heroine? But before we can break into a ‘bhangra’, or break out the bubbly, we are pulled up short. Lest Meeta is condemned to be one of those intelligent `behenjis’, she is saddled with a ‘jhalli’ other self, and made to do all kinds of strange things for no good reason.

That, right there, is the problem. You want Meeta to be sharp and bright and talk about plastic and polymers and renewable energy, more power to you. Why the cop out? People can be bright and weird at the same time, but then you have to make it the right kind of weird. Meeta’s weirdness comes down to making faces, sticking her tongue sideways, talking fast in sing-song : basically acting hard at acting weird. She’s given a reason to be like that, but I didn’t buy it. Nor her over-the-top act, which overshadows her natural easy self.
So many of the plot devices feel so contrived and cobbled together that you lose sight of the best things about the film. Some absolutely delightful sequences get lost. I would count Sidharth Malhotra’s floppy- haired loser-trying-to-find-himself as one of the pluses of this film, even if he doesn’t come across too different with two girls he oscillates between : Cracked Meeta and Hardheaded Practical Karishma ( Adah) . His Nikhil is nice because he doesn’t try too hard. I would also say, that despite her missteps here, that there really is no one quite like Parineeti Chopra in Bollywood : she is a mainstream actress bringing in freshness to jaded mainstream products.

The loose, random plotting, and motivation, lets them down. Some solid supporting acts– Manoj Joshi , as the father of the bride, a curly-haired comic as the relative of the groom—go waste. There’s also the crucial thing about spark : why are our love stories so chary about showing throbbing passion? In a stand-out scene, which has Meeta and Nikhil high in the sky in a picture-perfect Valentine Day Hallmark card-type setting, we see the start of something. And then there is a thud, and the film takes them into an entirely different ‘Hum Aapke Hain Kaun’ alley with enraged uncles who have no compunction about slapping young girls across the face. And sobbing mothers yelling about ‘ghar ki izzat’. Did I also hear a ‘door ho jaao meri nazaron se’? Even if I didn’t, it would have fit right in with the scene. What is this, a dated four-hanky tear-jerker?
When, dear Bollywood, when will we get a real, rousing rom com?

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First Published on: February 7, 2014 11:19 am
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    pritamkumari
    Feb 11, 2014 at 2:02 pm
    This movie is really good. Parineeti is awesome. I watched this movie based on the prerelease verdict given by this blog that this movie is going to be a hit. Their prediction matches with actual audience reaction. Thank god I didn't refer to your website for watching this movie :blog.socialtota/201...
    Reply
    1. M
      Mrfortheidiots
      Feb 8, 2014 at 9:04 am
      "It doesn’t have is a coherent story", thats very coherent writing indeed...lol
      Reply
      1. M
        Mrfortheidiots
        Feb 8, 2014 at 9:04 am
        "It doesn’t have is a coherent story", thats very coherent writing indeed...lol
        Reply
        1. L
          Larry
          Feb 9, 2014 at 1:13 pm
          I like your review - it was short and to the point and provided an alternative to the glowing tributes by all those hopeless romantics (or dare I say it paid reviewers - sorry Kejriwal has me thinking that everybody is on in India). It will take a while before I get to see it here on legal media. When that happens I will remember to not wear my rose colored gles.
          Reply
          1. L
            Larry
            Feb 9, 2014 at 1:13 pm
            I like your review - it was short and to the point and provided an alternative to the glowing tributes by all those hopeless romantics (or dare I say it paid reviewers - sorry Kejriwal has me thinking that everybody is on in India). It will take a while before I get to see it here on legal media. When that happens I will remember to not wear my rose colored gles.
            Reply
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              aaram
              Feb 7, 2014 at 6:09 pm
              stupid review...its a good movie!
              Reply
              1. A
                aaram
                Feb 7, 2014 at 6:09 pm
                stupid review...its a good movie!
                Reply
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                  DharmaBhakt
                  Feb 8, 2014 at 10:19 pm
                  THIS... I have to say, is the only honest review of the film that I have seen till now. There no story here whatsoever. The narratives oscillates omly between the Johar & the Kashyap ideologies and the end product leaves you deeply unsatisfied. As stated in this review that movie has a lot going in its favor but it just doesn't live up to the expectations or the glowing reviews that are floating around. Few sequences are very funny but thats about it. The actors try too hard to make you believe in the plot but it just doesn't hold up. Wish I had read this before watching the film, coz even if I would have watched it, I wouldn't have been so disappointed.
                  Reply
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                    Akilesh Sengupta
                    Feb 9, 2014 at 3:42 am
                    Ms. Gupta, you seem to have completely missed the point here. The movie isn't about all the nitpicking you have done. It's a delightfully fresh film filled with quirky characters and cackling humour. But perhaps you were so busy taking down notes and trying to sound intelligent with your review that you missed out on all of it. Stories are meant to be contrived. It's about how convincing it is in the end, and this one definitely was, to me. And no, I'm not from any "camp" in Bollywood, just a lover of all things creative.
                    Reply
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                      Akilesh Sengupta
                      Feb 9, 2014 at 3:42 am
                      Ms. Gupta, you seem to have completely missed the point here. The movie isn't about all the nitpicking you have done. It's a delightfully fresh film filled with quirky characters and cackling humour. But perhaps you were so busy taking down notes and trying to sound intelligent with your review that you missed out on all of it. Stories are meant to be contrived. It's about how convincing it is in the end, and this one definitely was, to me. And no, I'm not from any "camp" in Bollywood, just a lover of all things creative.
                      Reply
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                        Anit-Virus
                        Feb 10, 2014 at 7:17 am
                        middler finger to u.. i have seen this movie and its not at all bad. Its good movie with good story........ u peoples cant digest the common story ...... __|__
                        Reply
                        1. A
                          Anit-Virus
                          Feb 10, 2014 at 7:17 am
                          middler finger to u.. i have seen this movie and its not at all bad. Its good movie with good story........ u peoples cant digest the common story ...... __|__
                          Reply
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                            Arav Chauhan
                            Feb 9, 2014 at 6:28 pm
                            Exactly what i wanted to say, they've wasted parineeti in this film. The movie could've been better.
                            Reply
                            1. A
                              Arav Chauhan
                              Feb 9, 2014 at 6:28 pm
                              Exactly what i wanted to say, they've wasted parineeti in this film. The movie could've been better.
                              Reply
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                                Godfrey Vas
                                Feb 10, 2014 at 11:34 pm
                                Completely agree with you DharmaOne of the most boring movies since Gori Tera.....Even the Rajeev Masand review was probably written by KaranAnupama Chopra skipped reviewing it......
                                Reply
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                                  Godfrey Vas
                                  Feb 10, 2014 at 11:34 pm
                                  Completely agree with you DharmaOne of the most boring movies since Gori Tera.....Even the Rajeev Masand review was probably written by KaranAnupama Chopra skipped reviewing it......
                                  Reply
                                  1. 7
                                    74mramesh .
                                    Jun 8, 2014 at 4:03 am
                                    @DharmaBhakt, I agree with you. Unfortunately, I watched the movie for 45 minutes before I realized that I shouldn't be watching it. When I came to this review, it was confirmed that the movie is utterly boring.
                                    Reply
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                                      pavi
                                      Feb 8, 2014 at 7:34 am
                                      Shubhra yaar, be a little less y yourself. the film didn't pakaao me but your review did... kitna bolti hai
                                      Reply
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                                        pavi
                                        Feb 8, 2014 at 7:34 am
                                        Shubhra yaar, be a little less y yourself. the film didn't pakaao me but your review did... kitna bolti hai
                                        Reply
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                                          george
                                          Feb 12, 2014 at 9:11 am
                                          strange review... I mean, there are flaws in the movie but it isn't as bad as suggested here. Whatever is wrong with the movie, it does entertain in the end. And since when do romcoms follow logic.
                                          Reply
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                                            george
                                            Feb 12, 2014 at 9:11 am
                                            strange review... I mean, there are flaws in the movie but it isn't as bad as suggested here. Whatever is wrong with the movie, it does entertain in the end. And since when do romcoms follow logic.
                                            Reply
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