Delhi-6 Hindi Movie

Feature Film | 2009 | Drama | 2h 21min
What Delhi 6 lacks is a crisp plotline. The characterization is poor and nothing that the character does is clear. In fact no situation or anything that happens has a good reason and nothing evokes any kind of emotion.
Feb 20, 2009 By Ashok Nayak

Superstitious belief is all around the globe. Especially in India, superstition somehow finds a foothold in almost every aspect of our lives. Here ignorance goes hand in hand with superstitions and with the happening of a certain event they foretell an apparently unrelated event. And of course, Politics creeps its way into anything possible.

Delhi 6, directed by Rakesh Om Prakash Mehra of Rang De Basanti fame, talks about such beliefs and assumptions that bring turmoil into the peaceful lives of people living in Chandni Chowk, Delhi. Starring Abhishek Bachchan and Sonam Kapoor in the lead, the movie gets its name from the pin code 110006, proudly called Delhi 6. Rishi Kapoor, Om Puri, Waheeda Rahman, Vijay Raaz, Atul Kulkarni, Divya Dutta and many others play the supporting roles while Amitabh Bachchan will be seen in a special appearance playing Abhishek's grandfather in the film.

Born to a Hindu father and a Muslim mother, Roshan (Abhishek Bachchan) visits India for the very first time with his grandmother (Waheeda Rahman). He comes with a plan of just staying in Delhi for a couple of weeks to the satisfaction of his granny who wishes to spend her last days of life at a locality she was married into. But the love, affection and respect that the neighbors shower on him and his granny, Roshan starts to enjoy his stay. Initially the superstitious beliefs and most of the rituals seems silly to him and a number of events forces him to just leave the country immediately. But his love for Bittu (Sonam Kapoor), who aims to make it big in Indian Idol, forces him to stay back. What happens during his stay in Delhi is what the movie is all about.

Rakesh Om Mehra's Delhi 6 is partly dramatic and partly musical with a universal message. He manages to put across the message but the journey that he takes us through is dull and monotonous. The movie is filled with many characters and the quintessential instances that forms our trademark - bylanes, a sweet shop, lack of water, traffic stopped for a pregnant cow in labour, Ramleela, a lecherous photographer, an old evil money lender with his young wife, warring brothers living under the same roof with a wall in centre as boundary, political and communal issues, a saint who can talk to spirits and many more.

What Delhi 6 lacks is a crisp plotline. The characterization is poor and nothing that the character does is clear. In fact no situation or anything that happens has a good reason and nothing evokes any kind of emotion. There are so many characters and there is so much happening that you find yourself confused, as if lost in the grubby alleys of Delhi. The metaphorical use of a Kala Bandar to symbolize the beast within is an interesting approach but blending in a variety of instances to show one's ignorance and dragging it over reels and reels steals away the appeal of the film. Besides that, the movie is too sluggish in its pace with a shoddy climax. Also the cinematography and lighting is bad in most parts. If only Mehra had chosen to concentrate on the important aspects and given a sympathetic ending the movie would have worked wonders. And what is with the white background, white attire heaven sequence with Abhishek and Amitabh? A.R. Rahman's music is the saving grace - Masakali and Yeh Dilli hai mere yaar stands out.

Performances are another section that worked fine for this movie. But the only complaint is that, the character of Bittu should have been given more focus especially because Sonam Kapoor has a wonderful screen presence. Abhishek Bachchan disappoints with his poor dialogue delivery and fake American accent. Waheeda Rahman as his ailing granny who gingerly walks towards the cow to get its blessing, Rishi Kapoor as a man who respects love, Vijay Raaz as the rude inspector have pulled off their act very well. The rest of the cast was good too.

Overall, Delhi 6 is over packed for the small journey it takes. Watch it if you have nothing better to do. I would go with one and a half stars for the message, good performances, music and the gorgeous Sonam Kapoor.

Ashok Nayak