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Mr. Singh Mrs. Mehta

Extramarital affairs on screen are not new for the Indian audience but what makes this one different is the way the writer and director have handled it. Think about it. Every time you watch a film based on this theme, you look for a reason – why is the guy doing this or why is the woman cheating on her husband? Unless this thread is strong enough, the film will not keep viewers engrossed.

This film too follows the done-to-death loneliness formula. No nothing new in this department.
Set in the UK, the film is about Karan Singh (Naved Aslam) and Sakhi Mehta (Lucy Hassan). Both live a lie to their respective spouses and are romantically involved with each other. Twist in the tale: Ashwin (Prashant Narayanan) and Neera (Aruna Shields) find out about their respective spouses but prefer to keep quiet. Drawn to each other by shame and anger, they find comfort in their own growing friendship even as they resolve not to be like their unfaithful mates.

The real twist of the tale is at the end. In once instance, the wife decides to accept her flaws and take her husband back. With the other couple, the cheating husband decides not to reconcile with his wife.
The writers thought the story would connect with Indian sensibilities but they made a crucial mistake. They didn’t account for the modern Indian woman, who is no longer the all-accepting wife of yesteryear. Also, the film is set in the UK. Odd.

Instead of playing on emotions and sentiments, the writer and director decide to titillate the audience. Not surprisingly, everything in the film spins out of control. Neither will a family audience take to it (since most scenes look forced) nor will front-benchers find anything new.

It’s a debut for Pravesh Bhardwaj, who is lacking in the execution department. The music, by Grammy-nominated artiste Ustad Shujaat Hussain Khan, is strictly all right. Also, some scenes have been cut very abruptly, leaving a lot to be desired in the editing department. The film looks like an incomplete product. The shots are neither synchronised nor do they blend with each other, thus vaguely shifting the panorama. The pace is too slow.

Prashant Narayanan does a good job but Aruna Shields is emotionless and expressionless though she might be able to woo front-benchers with her oomph. Naved Aslam and Lucy Hassan are average in their miniscule roles.

In a nutshell, the film’s theme will keep the family audience away. Also, the urban audience won’t be interested as the product offers nothing new. Despite steamy scenes, the lack of awareness and unknown faces in the cast will also dampen the film’s prospects in B and C class cities.

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