Yeh Raaste Hain Pyaar Ke, (2001)
Sometimes a movie can be so compelling that it grips me immediately and I have to pen a post A.S.A.P. Sometimes a movie can be so awful that I have to share my mirth in laughing at it. Sometimes a movie just doesn't strike you as one or the other. Sometimes a movie doesn't really strike you at all.
Yeh Raaste Hai Pyaar Ke is one such film. I was intrigued by the horribly-basmatic sounding plot, which includes lookalikes and car chases and wrongful deaths and, and also by the fact that it features actors I've never seen together before - Preity Zinta and Ajay Devgan? Ajay Devgan and Madhuri Dixit?
While the leads were blandly appealing, when I was watching the film, I had the distinct feeling that it was made ten years too late with actors who had way better things to do. I mean, Madhuri, seriously, when was Devdas made? Not long after this plot. It was the bit actors - the family of villains, the heroine's evil aunt, etc. - who seemed to be relishing their roles to the max. Does anyone say to the max anymore? I am totally bringing that back.
Of course, I should add that Ajay is pretty easy on the eyes as he wears a variety of suit/t-shirt combos while jumping through car windshields.
The story itself combines pure masala with emotional drama, complete with unlikely twists, Sunny Deol, imagined scenes, and questionable fashion choices. It seems like every hour is a different film. First it focuses on the lives of Vicky (Ajay) and Sakshi (Preity), two wily thieves who can steal a car and carry a catchy tune at the same time. Eventually, a vengeful villain attempts to assassinate our hero, mowing down his double by mistake. Poor Rohit (also Ajay! Bet you didn't see that one coming). More pitiful still is his widow, Neha (Madhuri), who won't believe that her husband has died on their wedding night - and we flashback to their courtship for another hour. Due to falling asleep on a bus by mistake (literally on a bus) Vicky lands in Rohit's hometown and assumes his identity, with the blessings (and many lakhs) of Rohit's father. Of course, both being thought dead and posing as a married man leave Sakshi high and dry, and the villains eventually realize that they've killed the wrong guy. Mayhem ensues.
I don't mean to sound too down on the film - it was an enjoyable time-pass, after all. The songs were catchy and it's always fun to see Madhuri out-dance her costars.