Movie Review: Barfi is Cold and Sweet

Sep 14, 2012

Director: Anurag Basu
Cast: Ranbir Kapoor, Priyanka Chopra, Ileana D'cruz, Rupa Ganguly, Akash Khurana, Jishu Sengupta
Banner: Yash Raj Films
Rating: *****

Barfi is a love triangle” sweet, sublime and differently told, but obvious to the core anyway. There is a hint of a mystery in this story too, but it all ends without much of a surprise.

In Darjeeling of the early seventies lives the differently-abled Barfi (Ranbir), prankster who never runs out of goofy ideas. He was born Murphy but then the name changed to Barfi over the years. When he meets Shruti (Ileana D’Cruz), daughter of a rich Kolkata household that comes to Darjeeling on vacation, the sparks fly. The problem is, Shruti is already engaged to be married and can€™t decide who to choose.

The plot spin comes when Barfi needs big money after his father falls ill. Search for a solution sees him resort to crime, and also facilitates the entry of Priyanka Chopra as the autistic Jhilmil. Since Jhilmil belongs to a rich family, she could be Barfi€™s key to big cash. Of course, its never that smooth. What follows adds suspense to rom-com.

Priyanka tries too hard to become Jhilmil, and the effort shows. This role could have been a steal for the talented National Award-winning star. Instead, she chooses to play to the gallery. A little less wiggling of the fingers, a smaller twitch on the lips and a less elaborate roll of the eyes would have sufficed. Debutante Ileana on the other hand does admirably, making most of her more simplistic role. The Telugu superstar gets her body language as a posh Bengali girl bang-on.

Barfi! is a pleasantly different film, only it isn’€™t an extraordinary one. That's because despite the brilliant characters and setting, the film doesn’€™t have an extraordinary story to tell.

The hero can’t speak or hear” so he has no dialogues while the heroine is an autistic girl. The film is set in Darjeeling and there are no songs on lip sync, not even the mandatory item number our songless films normally have.