Rajeev Masand – movies that matter : from bollywood, hollywood and everywhere else

April 5, 2013

3 Idiots!

Filed under: Our FIlms — Rajeev @ 10:51 pm

April 05, 2013

Cast: Ali Zafar, Devyendu Sharma, Siddharth, Tapsee Pannu, Rishi Kapoor, Lilette Dubey, Anupam Kher

Director: David Dhawan

Like a battering ram, David Dhawan’s puerile and frenzied remake, Chashme Baddoor, shatters and mauls your memories of Sai Paranjpye’s charming original. Light-hearted humor and innocent romance makes way for sexist jokes and cheesy puns…and the merits of keeping things simple are lost in the cacophony of screechy performances.

But I have a confession to make here – I didn’t hate the film. Dhawan is no Paranjpye, and his cinema is as subtle as a sledgehammer. The new Chashme Baddoor does no justice to the 1981 gem, but it’s not unwatchable either. What Dhawan’s shrewdly done – under the guise of remaking a much-loved classic – is repeated the template of many of his own previous films: Best friends fall for the same girl. When she’s leaning towards the other guy, what do you do? Sabotage their relationship, what else?

If the film doesn’t stink, it’s because Dhawan’s hired an enthusiastic trio of male leads who make the most of the wafer-thin material they’re provided. Sid (Ali Zafar), Jai (Siddharth), and Omi (Divyendu Sharma) are roommates sharing a rented home in Goa. Ever the slackers, Jai and Omi spend their days pawing girls and cracking lewd jokes. When their attempts to land the new girl in town (Tapsee Pannu) fall flat, they’re hell-bent on making sure Sid doesn’t succeed where they failed.

The dialogues are pedestrian but the actors – particularly Siddharth and Divyendu – often make them work because of their sharp timing. The entire film, in fact, hinges purely on the chemistry of the boys, who ride over many of the script contrivances. The same, unfortunately, can’t be said of the leading lady who exudes the charm of an ice cube.

In the Lallan Miyan role from Paranjpye’s film, Dhawan casts a heavily tatooeed, motorbike-riding Rishi Kapoor as the owner of a nearby restaurant whom our heroes permanently owe money to. He has a nice romantic track with Lilette Dubey who plays the boys’ landlady.

Still, the new Chashme Baddoor doesn’t entirely work because Dhawan appears conflicted between taking the characters on a journey of his making, and sticking to the blueprint of the original film. Much of the final act involving a fake kidnapping feels too naïve in a modern story, and Dhawan can’t seem to skillfully adapt the simple plot turns of the earlier film to his current day version.

If you’re willing to leave the memory of the earlier film at the door, there’s a chance you might enjoy the rat-a-tat sparring between the leads, and you might even find yourself chuckling at some of the crude humor.

I’m going with two-and-a-half out of five for David Dhawan’s Chashme Baddoor. Like junk food, it has no nutritional value. But an occasional bite doesn’t hurt.

(This review first aired on CNN-IBN)


  1. Cheap comedy..That actress is horrible..Her Facial expression made so angry that i felt like coming out of the movie..Only beared the movie for those three friends.

    Comment by Amit — April 6, 2013 @ 2:56 pm

  2. I loved your last comment for the film. I believe among all the critics only you have “that thing” to come up with something like this….. THat’s why I have been and will be following your reviews. 🙂

    Comment by Manmeet — April 6, 2013 @ 4:48 pm

  3. This time I will not agree with you Rajeev and I will go one star more for the same. This one star more is for Dhawan’s comic timing. Unlike today’s director Sajid khan or Farah khan. whose scritps are thoroughly saved by Actors like akshay, ritesh…

    Comment by Rahul Walawalkar — April 6, 2013 @ 5:53 pm

  4. Rajeev, u gotta get some heart. Considering your strict evaluation, you could have still given 3 out of 5. Well i know you stand up to the true meaning of the word ‘critique’ , but half more is no crime. Think about it. but anyways I’m still your fan 😛

    Comment by Mohammed juned — April 7, 2013 @ 12:24 am

  5. i watched this movie today …. aur is movie ko main 2 star dunga apni taraf se … isse upar is movie ko rating nhi mil skti … balki 2 bhi bohot zyaada hain … ghatiya movie hai …

    Comment by Aman — April 7, 2013 @ 1:07 am

  6. Watched this movie today and I so agree with your review on it. Having seen the original Chashme Baddoor I felt there has been so much shift in our value system or I idea of humor has so changed. The humor that we find in our comedy films these days is very loud. As if they are trying very hard to make people laugh and mostly it involves either demeaning and making fun of each other by male leads or making sexiest jokes and cheap talks.

    But the idea of humor in our old movies was very subtle. It was derived from everyday natural human emotions like Hrishikesh Mukherjee movies. I will describe it by using the metaphor borrowed from film “Anand” that Non Veg jokes are like Fuljhadi they make you laugh loudly at an instant and it gets over soon because the surprise factor is lost after the first time. But Veg jokes are like “Agarbatti” which touches strings of inward emotions and gives a long lasting smile on your face and you smile everytime you remember it.

    And yes the film is still watchable because of the sincere performances by the male leads. It reminds me of another David Dhawan movie “Hero No 1” where the value system from the old movie “Bawarchi” was so changed. In “Bawarchi” Rajesh Khanna brought happiness to the family by bringing in simple values and truths to everyone’s lives but in the remake Govinda achieves it on the power and influence of his rich father replacing money for values. But that film again was watchable because of the brilliant performance by Govinda who acted so freely and just flowed through his role in the movie.

    Comment by Mukul Agarwal — April 7, 2013 @ 11:13 pm

  7. What?Nobody saw this movie?No comments yet.

    Comment by Gururaj — April 9, 2013 @ 11:52 am

  8. 2.5 star. Can’t believe. Pedastrian dialogues, hopeless acting especially ali zafar , no direction and complete murder of the original. I went cause of rating of 2.5 star. Rajeev please do not be generous next time.

    Comment by M Shah — April 11, 2013 @ 4:38 pm

  9. GOD…. 2.5 stars, really rajeev? come on this film was almost in the same league as himmatwala. And to make it worse the lead actor and actress were horrible and completely expressionless.really BAD ACTING to sum it up. the dialogues made it even worse. the only reason i watched it was because of your 2.5 star review, i thought i might be a ‘paisa wasool’, but 20 minutes into the movie the only thing that came to my mind was; why would a CLASS critic like rajeev give this 2.5 stars? but honestly i was disappointed. im going with .5 or max 1 star.

    Comment by Areeb — April 12, 2013 @ 12:23 am

  10. sir on what basis u gave this movie 2.5 stars is beyond me

    Comment by akash — April 14, 2013 @ 7:52 pm

  11. First … Lets not compare it with the Original Chashme Badoor. On its own, its a time-pass film ..something we would relate David Dhawan with. Watch it, laugh for the 2 hours & go home. Actors Siddharth and Divyendu were good and so was the track between Rishi Kapoor & Lillette. Nothing much about the rest, with the heroine did nothing but run around in skimpy shorts and Ali Zafar was expressionless in the whole film

    Comment by Sameer Mathur — April 15, 2013 @ 4:09 pm

  12. 1981 classic, “Chashme baddoor” can bearly be compared with any movie of this time. So comparing this Evoluted chashme baddoor with the old one is injustice to this era of film industry. David Dhwan’s Chashme baddoor when compared with movies of this time, it will definitely be said as “injured among dead”, so it’s better, and if you have time and have to watch a movie just to hang out with friends you chose the lesser worse, wont you ?

    Comment by Vivek — April 19, 2013 @ 12:08 pm

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