The signature Disney style poster of Khoobsurat was not enough to make this film a “Disney” film in character.
Khoobsurat is a romantic film starring Sonam Kapoor and Fawad Khan. It is produced by Anil Kapoor under the Disney banner. It is the remake of the 1980 film, Khubsoorat, starring Rekha.
The film aimed to be the Indian Cinderella story but unfortunately, it falls short of expectations. The first half is entertaining enough but the second half disappoints. The second half was poorly directed and felt rushed in parts. If it weren’t for the good direction in the first half and the expert performances of fantastic actors like Ratna Pathak and Kirron Kher, the audience would not be able to get through this film.
The other main issue is that when a romantic film about a royal family is made under the Disney banner, one has certain expectations. We expect to see a lot of class and beauty. We expect a dashing, handsome prince. We expect to see a delicate, innocent, good-hearted and selfless princess. We expect to see beautiful locales and attire. And we expect a love story that is made possible despite being impossible.
In this film, class and beauty can only be attributed to Fawad Khan who plays a royal prince perfectly. It’s as though he was custom made for this role. But Sonam is not delicate. She is outspoken, kind of loud, good hearted, but not selfless or coy. And her wardrobe has little purpose in this film aside from making us cringe. But the bigger issue is that there is no impossibility in this love story. It actually comes together all too easily which means that the audience cannot experience any true desire to see the hero and heroine come together. Nor is there rejoice when it finally occurs.
The film simply becomes boring and all too predictable. The characters, such as Rani Sa, who were well established and actually made the film worth watching in the first half transformed almost instantly in the second half. The script lost credibility and the small ounce of excitement the first half had managed to build simply went down the drain.
Khoobsurat seems to have gotten stuck between what a Cinderella story should be and a regular Bollywood rom-com. The ill placed kissing scenes, the unrequired and illogical drunken scenes in this film are usually not seen in Disney films. A Disney film is one that can be watched by children and young girls and women alike. Khoobsurat makes the mistake of trying to “urbanize” or “modernize” the Cinderella story. It should have instead simply adapted the Cinderella story to Indian culture.
I think that this is a film that can easily be skipped. However, it is a treat for fans of Pakistani actor Fawad Khan who has debuted in Bollywood with this film. Let your likes and dislikes make the decision.
If any of you have seen Rekha’s Khubsoorat, I would like to know how this remake compares to the original so do let me know.