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'Andaaz': Flight to boredom

Ashish Magotra | May 24, 2003 18:05 IST

You may have seen countless love triangles, but never would you have encountered anything quite like Suneel Darshan's Andaaz. A still from Andaaz

Produced on a lavish budget with exotic locales, beauty queens and an established Bollywood hero, Andaaz just forgot a key ingredient for an entertaining film -- the script.

The promos claim that Andaaz is an unusually emotional story. It was emotional all right! This Friday fare had me in hysterics throughout. But I wonder if that was the response director Raj Kanwar (Laadla, Judaai, Jeet) was looking for.

For those who are still interested in the story, here goes: nothing. For the sake of authenticity, it shall be narrated as it happened.

Set in Dehradun, Andaaz opens with tomboy Kaajal (former Miss Universe Lara Dutta) playing football with a group of boys. She bumps into Raj (Akshay Kumar), who has recently moved into the neighbourhood. Crippled in an accident, Raj has a fascination for model aeroplanes. Kaajal shares his passion and the two become best of friends in no time.

But a crippled hero is not a safe bet in Bollywood masala potboilers. So Raj begins to walk again. All it takes is a shriek from Kaajal -- 'Run Raj Run' -- and he's fit to participate in the 2004 Olympics in Athens.

Up next, Raj is actively playing football for his college team. Here I must add: 30-plus Akshay Kumar fails to aAkshay Kumar and Lara Dutta in Andaazppear convincing as a college student. Perhaps he flunked a few times, suggested the man next to me in the theatre, helpfully.

Soon, Raj joins the Indian Air Force, simply because Kaajal wants to ride in a plane. While Raj is away, Kaajal's romantic senses play. She falls in love with hotshot industrialist Karan Singhania (Aman Varma) who travels all over north India in a helicopter.

A heartbroken Raj immerses himself in work. As a reward for his hard work, the air force sends him to South Africa for further training. In the land of the protea, Raj attracts the attention of Jiya (former Miss World Priyanka Chopra).

Refusing to fall prey to her charms, Raj shows Jiya the exit. But like a true Bollywood stalker, Jiya chases Raj all the way to India. The standard wooing period follows. Finally, he relents.

Comes another twist in the plot: Jiya is Kaajal's sister-in-law! What follows next is a mix of the expected and the unexpected.

Impressive? Hardly.

Composer duo Nadeem-Shravan, who delivered hits like Aashiqui, Dil Hai Ke Manta Nahi and Saajan in the past, could have done a better job. 

The entire moodLara Dutta, Akshay Kumar and Priyanka Chopra in Andaaz of Andaaz is jarring, to say the least.

Of the cast, Lara Dutta deserved a better debut to display her talents. After inspiring performances in Hera Pheri, Aankhen and Awara Paagal Deewana, one expected better from Akshay Kumar. Priyanka Chopra alone clicks with the audience, thanks to her skimpy outfits.

Raj Kanwar's contrived execution of a beaten-to-the-death plot does not deserve any mention.

Movies are said to mirror life. Andaaz mirrors neither life nor fantasy. Suffice it to say that Suneel Darshan's love triangle is devoid of style, script, and sense.

Cast: Akshay Kumar, Lara Dutta, Priyanka Chopra, Aman Varma
Producer: Suneel Darshan
Story, direction: Raj Kanwar

Lyrics: Sameer
Music: Nadeem-Shravan

Cinematography: Ishwar Bidri
Choreography: Raju Khan, Baba Yadav

Action: Abbas Ali Moghul

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