The highpoint of Hrishikesh Mukherjee’s movies was the simplicity with which he narrated the story of ordinary people. Soaked in humour with an undercurrent of emotions, the films made by Hrishi-da are fresh to this date, inspiring the present-day film-makers as well. DO DOONI CHAAR, directed by debutant Habib Faisal, could easily pass off as a Hrishikesh Mukherjee film. A simple plot involving simpletons and straight out of life situations makes this one an extremely watchable experience. The casting of Rishi and Neetu Kapoor in pivotal parts is, without doubt, the icing on the cake. Come to think of it, DO DOONI CHAAR is a complete contrast to what’s being made these days. It’s far from glossy, the setting is a middle class house in a tiny colony of Delhi, the characters are far from classy, the problems are very, very real and yes, there’s a message towards the final moments of the film. But it’s these factors that make DO DOONI CHAAR a notch above the commonplace. Most importantly, this film has soul, which most films lack these days. Final word? The life of the ordinary is presented most extra-ordinarily here. DO DOONI CHAAR is a little gem that should not be missed! Life can be tough for a man who teaches at a school for a living, lives in a tiny flat in Delhi and is coping with the double digit inflation rates and single digit increments in his salary. Add to that, a teenage daughter, a fast-track son and a wife who loves the good life. The life of the Duggals is passing by in simply taking care of the basics. Until one day, they decide to dream. Their ticket to dreaming comes in the form of a wedding invitation.
What follows is a journey of chaos, realizations, calculations, confrontations and bonding. This crazy Duggals will fight it out at home [and the neighborhood] for what they think is a ‘good buy’ for the family: a four-wheeler. DO DOONI CHAAR works for a number of reasons, the prime reason being its tight and interesting script which abounds in real-life situations that have been presented with utmost conviction. Desperately wanting to possess a four-wheeler, the story unfolds beautifully and the characters, each of them, only enhance the impact. Even the individual stories of the two kids are wonderfully presented. Any hiccups? No really, but the pre-climax tends to get unbelievable when the free for all takes place in a fast food joint and the chase that ensues. However, the conclusion carries a strong message, which registers a strong impact. Habib Faisal is a director to watch. His writing is the highpoint and his handling of the subject is top notch. He has executed the light moments as well as subtle emotions amazingly well. The songs are smartly placed in the narrative, with the title track topping the list. Rishi Kapoor is the lifeline of the film, he delivers a sparkling performance. The veteran has delivered incredible performances in the past and his work in DO DOONI CHAAR is at par with those terrific portrayals. Neetu Kapoor is admirable. A complete natural, she adds so much to a scene, which otherwise would’ve fallen flat had a lesser actor been cast in that role. More than anything else, it’s an experience watching this real-life jodi together after a hiatus. The two kids – Archit and Aditi – are excellent in their respective roles. Akhilendra Mishra is first-rate. Supriya Shukla is fantastic.
On the whole, DO DOONI CHAAR is a delight to watch. Just don’t miss this one!