What is it about simple cinema that makes you feel all warm and fuzzy? No. Not all that jazz that we see in Karan Johar films or those extravagant sets in Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s canvases or even the realistic hard-hitting plots Madhur Bandarkar likes to jut out. I’m talking about effortless cinema. And that is exactly what Do Dooni Chaar is. The hype behind the film was simply directed towards the comeback of Rishi and Neetu Kapoor but as actors, they both spoke about the film in its entirety being one that was relatable. You probably haven’t heard too much about director Habib Faisal. However, the director has an interesting bunch of films to his credit as a scriptwriter including Salaam Namaste, Jhoom Barabar Jhoom and Ta Ra Rum Pum. Do Dooni Chaar is his directorial debut and from the looks of it, we will be seeing a lot more of him.
Enter Santosh Duggal (Rishi Kapoor). The math whiz barely manages to support his wife, Kusum (Neetu Kapoor), and two children Payal, (Aditi Vasudev) and Sandy (Archit Krishna). While wife Kusum takes charge of the running the house under the stifle budget, the rest of the family dream of a life of luxury. All hell breaks loose when Mr. Duggal realizes his family needs a car after a fall out with his neighbor whose car the Duggal’s borrow on occasion. The family finds themselves squabbling over EMI’s, car colors, models and the desire to gain a car in order to up their social strata. The lack of funds causes Mr. Duggal to gain another job and even challenge his morals. While his children tell him to shoot his values and succumb to the luxuries of owning a car.
What works for the film is the honest plot and performances. While you get to view the life of an underbelly family in Delhi, at no point does the central point of the film, the car venture, become monotonous. As a director, Faisal is top notch with his execution of a script that could come off as plain boring. That isn’t the case with Do Dooni Chaar. However, there are sequences in the film that make you cringe because of its uncanny resemblance to a few television serials. These are primarily dialogues which make you go eek! And the climax seems rather odd and sudden. It feels like the director wanted to rush the film and all of a sudden the climax appears. So it’s interesting but not as exciting as it could have been.
Rishi Kapoor plays the grouchy teacher with extreme precision and nuance. His characterization as Mr. Duggal is top notch as he walked the walk as the middle class man who is warped by the surging prices of the time. And then there is the incredibly beautiful Neetu Kapoor who is a delight to watch. As Mrs. Duggal she portrays the middle class housewife with perfection. She’s deglam but beautiful, honest and boy, did we miss her! The Duggal children too do perfect justice to their roles. Aditi Vasudev is perfect as the overambitious teen while Archit Krishna is hilarious! His comic timing is spot on and works well as Rishi Kapoor’s son.
While Do Dooni Chaar is a family film which is rare to come by nowadays, it is rather unfinished and could do with some fine tuning. The highlight of the film is of course, the Rishi-Neetu jodi and their chemistry with is yet to be matched!