Ek Paheli Leela Hindi Movie Review
Reincarnation is an attractive topic for filmmakers. Despite a set template that they adhere to, there is often a lot to play around with in terms of emotions, characters and locations. Unfortunately in the history of Bollywood, very few such films have actually managed to crack it with the audience. Om Shanti Om being one of those rare cases. Three years back music barons T Series tried their hand at the genre with Dangerous Ishq. The film had everything on it to get the people in - Karishma Kapoor's comeback, technology and exotic locations. It tanked. The reason - the script.
The producers are back now with Ek Paheli Leela. A tale almost too similar - glamorous girl in the present age with an unfortunate past life in Rajasthan. An incomplete love story and a revenge tale. This time they relinquish the technology, stick to pure cinematography and add what seems - a more saleable heroine on this date. They even retain the hero (Rajneesh Duggal) and the villain (Rahul Dev) for the past age. To make thing better they have changed the faces in the reincarnations and added a pretty interesting twist in the end.
There are too many things about Ek Paheli Leela that do not fit. The screenplay lacks direction and pace. And the director lacks clarity. He gives in to the urge to show the audience what he believes they would like to watch and not what he should show. So what we get is close ups of Sunny Leone's heaving bosom, close glances of her legs and anything that he may be allowed to show. Sunny on her part does what she does best - appear seductive, and how!
Sunny's acting skills are of course another debate altogether. Meera, the present day model is based in London and has accent fits the character. Leela on the other day is a Rajasthani village girl from three hundred years ago and yet with an English accent. Also, Leela seems to have costumes to match her assets. Irrespective of what her friends from and rest of the people in the era are wearing, she is provided with clothes that makes little sense.
Funnily, I was wrong when it came to performances. I thought it would be Sunny's histrionics that I would be complaining most about. While the entire cast is pretty bad, Mohit Ahlawat deserves special mention for making even Sunny Leone look like a performer!
But do we actually blame the actors when we have patchy writing for a script? The dialogues attempt to bring flavour but fall flat.
There is a line in the film - a drunk Meera asking her friends why did she not drink fourth beer directly instead of downing three beers before it. The friends reply, "because one, two and three comes before four". How I wish that perspective was used while writing the script... instead, the script appears to be written in a drunken stupor. Probably the writer banked on heroine's bust more than his reasoning to keep the interest levels of the audience up.
Another example - Meera has phobia of airplanes. Hence her friends get her drunk and drive right up to the plane so that she can be put into the plane that will travel from London to Jodhpur. It was almost like you were watching Kanti Shah's Gundaa where the characters can randomly walk into the runaway - airport security anyone?
Laden with convenient scenes and ample 'Sunny show', Ek Paheli Leela is not for the one who would ask for logic. It is a film for you, if you are pleased to have a random song pushed into the story every 10 minutes so that the heroine can dance a bit in scanty clothes. Story be damned.