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Saturday, June 25, 2022

Turning 30

There she is,this girl that’s twenty nine going on thirty,manless,jobless,and,oh yes,joyless.

Written by Shubhra Gupta | New Delhi |
January 14, 2011 3:51:10 pm

Director: Alankrita Srivastava

Cast:Gul Panag,Jeneva Talwar,Tillotama Shome,Purab Kohli,Ira Dubey,Siddharth Makkar

Rating: **

Naina is turning 30,and she’s all set for the big three oh : she’s practically engaged to the guy she’s madly in love with,and she’s on the verge of big things at the office. And then,in the grand tradition of all chick flicks,most of which come out of the ‘He’s Not That Into You’ and ‘Sex And The City’ Hollywood stream,everything goes down the chute. She gets dumped. Her boss dumps on her. And there she is,this girl that’s twenty nine going on thirty,manless,jobless,and,oh yes,joyless.

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Debutant director Alankrita Srivastava was on to something when she created Today’s Mumbai Girl Naina ( Panag),a real flesh-and-blood creature with a real job,and real pre-occupations. And the perky Gul Panag is the perfect choice to play a girl like that,whom one can bump into and recognize,not some illusory size zero female whose only job is to act as a clothes hanger for demented designers.

But ‘Turning 30’ soon turns from a warm,welcome peek into that girl’s life,a girl we are prepared to like,into a series of clichés. It’s almost like the script went looking for every single line that goes with the territory and stacks them up,one after another. They are strewn all through the film,appropriately tacked on to the situations they describe. ‘In this city’,intones the voice-over,’friends are family’. Cue Naina hanging out with her gal pals,exchanging confidences about soon-to-be-fiances,vicious bosses and straying husbands. ‘Just because I slept with you,it doesn’t mean I want to marry you’. That’s Naina having Rebound Sex with the Cute Guy From College ( Kohli) who bailed on her without warning and is now back,wanting true love and marriage and everything that goes with it.

There’s more. ‘It’s not so easy to move on’. That’s Naina railing at her concerned girl-friends when they tell her to forget the jerk who walked out on her. She mopes and weeps and shouts at the fellow and his parents. The references to sagging boobs and ‘chumming’,the token girl who likes girls ( there’s such shock when she comes out among this gang of very hip people who don’t blink at pre-marital sex and serial affairs that you wonder where they’re coming from),the gay swingers at the workplace ( of course,it’s an advertising office)—they are all there.

So is this one. ‘I need closure’,says Naina. She gets hers. We get ours.

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