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Zoya Factor Is Zany & Enjoyable

The  Zoya Factor

Starring Sonam Kapoor, Dulquer Salman

Directed by Abhishek Sharma

Rating: ****

A rom-com that’s intelligent enough to consider its audience intelligent enough to avoid spoonfeeding every  morsel of  emotion  …that’s The  Zoya Factor, a delightfully grownup  comedy where the laughs are  so  fluent ,  they fly.

In Hindi cinema there’s way too much punctuational  background music. Happy music  for  comic scenes,  dirgeful  violins  for tragedy…It’s as if  the  filmmakers are afraid to let us  find our own emotions  in  the  plot.

 The  Zoya Factor lets go . It allows  the characters  to  bloom and groove  to their  own beats. There is  a quirky cadence  to the narrative, which was  the mainstay  of Anuja Chauhan’s novel. In the  film  director Abhishek(Tere Bin Laden) Sharma  multiplies  the quirk-o-nomics  by leaps and bounds, rendering  the   source-material  into an endearing excursion with  a surfeit of  sauce material.

Saucy is indeed  how the  film comes  across. Filled with percolating  beans  our Zoya, as played  the  ebullient Sonam Kapoor, is  a bit of Lucille Ball and a  lot of just any fumbling  working-girl who dreams  of  doing something major with her life.Good to see a female hero who is vulnerable and  clumsy.  

When we first  first meet Zoya she is  being dumped  by a  nerdy  dentist boyfriend.From  the dentist, this plot with a  byte   sets off on  the wackiest  journey I’ve seen any female hero undertake. Sonam plays her goofy character with sincerity and spirit.She stumbles, she isn’t afraid to fall and when she fails she is man….errr, woman enough to  accept defeat.

The  narrative is  baggily engaging,  never allowing an over-tight editing pattern  to  ruin our  appreciation of  the actor’s attempts to  define the  unstated  near-religious connection of cricket with  the Indian psyche.

This  brings me to Dulquer Salman as  the  captain of  the  cricket team which “adopts” Zoya as their lucky mascot. Dulquer’s reined-in performance  works  to  pan out Sonam’s exuberant  portrayal of a girl who is  so  hellbent on creating  a  stir she ends up  courting chaos.And every member  of the  cricket team  specially  Angad Bedi and  Abhilash  Choudhary ,is well played.

It’s  good to see Sonam asking her  co-star to show her  his six-pack. Men have played  the field long enough.The  dialogues(by  Pradhuman  Singh) are colloquial and mordant with some  of the best lines  being mouthed not by the  cricketer hero and his confused heroine,  but  the other actors, some  of them  like Manu Rishi(playing an unctuous cricketing-board chief)  and Sikandar Kher(as Zoya’s protective but  bullying brother) are  so brilliant they add  oodles  of oomph and chutzpah to a  story that  brims with backchat.

Sanjay Kapoor as his real-life niece Sonam’s dad hits all the right notes. But  it’s Anil Kapoor who brings the  house down with his cameo as  himself  ‘AK’ mimicking his  daughter’s novitine-numbed  act so  flamboyantly I fell down laughing.This  is a comedy that doesn’t  eke  out its  laughs. It earns them.

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