Happy New Year: Money-Making Machine


Happy New Year, Farah Khan’s fourth directorial starring her favorite Shahrukh Khan, is almost the weakest film she has made, next in line after the infamously bad Tees Maar Khan. Farah apparently wrote the script for HNY before both Main Hoon Na and Om Shanti Om. The film didn’t materialize until now. After watching it though, one wishes it hadn’t materialized at all.

HNY has its funny moments but overall, it is a production with a poor script and poor performances. It has a rather unimaginative story, a mash of Shahrukh Khan dialogues and obviously very bad direction on Farah’s part. Neither does it get us rolling on the floor with laughter like MHN did, nor does it touch us like OSO.

The more I see Shahrukh in these types of films, the more I realize what a limited actor he is in terms of versatility. He brings absolutely nothing new to the table. Deepika did as well as anyone could with that role. I just don’t understand how the sweet pole dancer Mohini, who values honor above everything else, (yea, mixed messages, I hear you) is perfectly okay with theft and criminal plotting. At the risk of upsetting Katrina fans though, in the Lovely song, Deepika basically performed a collection of everything that Katrina has done til now, and that too effortlessly.

Boman Irani’s speech style seemed to be the same one he used in 3 Idiots. I found the epilepsy (?) seizures a bit redundant. I assume it was also a little insulting to those who suffer from the condition. It’s not exactly a disorder where people can have a life threatening seizure, wake up and continue doing what they were doing like nothing happened. I did find it funny when Boman had one in the middle of a dance performance and the rest of the group followed suit. It ended up being his signature dance move. Abhishek was effortlessly good and natural in his roles. I enjoyed his performances more than anyone else’s. I’ve always felt that Abhishek is a good actor who has not been given enough credit for his talent. Comparing Abhishek’s performance to that of acclaimed superstar Shahrukh Khan’s in this sad attempt of a film proves for once and for all that Abhishek is a talented and versatile actor. His skills are underutilized most of the time. Vivaan was good too for a newcomer.

And how can I possibly forget the 10 8 pack abs of Shahrukh Khan. It was literally force fed to us as soon as the film started. Between Shahrukh’s shirtless fight scenes and Deepika in next to nothing in Lovely, I had to double check that I was indeed watching a family masala entertainer. I thought Farah said that Ranveer’s oiled abs were not her thing? If Farah had paid as much attention to the script and direction of the film as Shahrukh’s million packs (as I assume it will be in his next film — the sky is the limit in special effects you know), HNY would have turned out a far better movie than it did. But who needs good films when perfectly average ones can make a nice heap (or should I say mountain?) of money? I enjoyed Farah’s MHN and OSO but if she intends on making poor quality films with well known names, she can count me out. Her brother does too much of that already.

So HNY is a bad film, but a very profitable one at that. It recently passed the 200 crore mark in collections. Add to this the profits from that HNY tour the cast did before the release, HNY has made a ton of money. So Farah is actually a very intelligent woman. Take any random script and bring on well known names so even if there is bad word of mouth, people will want to see it for themselves for their favorite star. Gauri Khan produced the film (it just means Shahrukh paid for it) under Shahrukh’s production company Red Chillies, so Shahrukh is even a bigger winner than Farah. Nothing like a nice fat check to bring old friends together once again.

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