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When they danced

Saturday, October 06, 2018
By Deepa Gahlot

Love Yatri
Abhiraj Minawala
Cast: Aayush Sharma, Warina Hussain, Ram Kapoor, Ronit Roy and others
Rating: * *

It's just a film, but even so, why is it that in our movies, the pretty, intelligent, rich girl falls in love with an ordinary looking duffer with no prospects and no life goals? Is it because it enables the taporis, who watch Bollywood movies, to dream of getting the princess, without proving their worth in any way?

Sushrut (Aayush Sharma), the 'hero' of this film, directed by Abhiraj Minawala, has the unfortunate nickname – Susu. He is not too handsome, not too bright and has no ambition except to teach garba to kids. But the film's plot demands that this guy with no discernible qualities, should woo and win a fair NRI business school topper – Michelle aka Manisha (Warina Hussain).

Susu's uncle (Ram Kapoor), a dandiya singer, fills his head with romantic nonsense, and even when the chap sees that he is clearly out of his league, tells him Indians learn love from the movies and make it last for seven births. Which is a scary thought!

For some reason, Michelle also falls in love with Susu, as he takes her on a foodie tour of Varodara. But her scowling daddy (Ronit Roy), who runs a chain of laundries in London called Lord Of The Rinse (seriously!), takes Susu atop a giant wheel to tell him that he is no match for his daughter, who is about to earn a  £ 85000 salary package. Susu gets all huffy over this, and Michelle leaves to go back to London.

Susu (always accompanied by irritating friends) is ready to give up, but the uncle takes him to London and lets him loose to stalk Michelle. (Okay, she blocked him on phone and FB, but he never heard of email?)

'Love Yatri' is an old fashioned love story, a poor man's 'DDLJ', so to say. Aayush Sharma with his big hair and gleaming smile can dance; this film was not meant to display his acting skills. Warina Hussain is pretty in a bland sort of way, and she will also need another film to prove that she can act.

The soundtrack of the film used the thumping dandiya beats and some popular garba tunes; the bright costumes have enough mirror work to sink a ship. 'Love Yatri', released just in time for Navratri, the nine nights of dancing madness, captures a Gujarati milieu not often seen in Hindi films, and the festival where romances are reported to happen – which is why the film was originally titled 'Love Ratri', till protests forced a change. Without the energetic dancing, this is just a generic Bollywood romance – a date movie at best.

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