Dear Arjun and Mohit Suri, Stop Stereotyping Biharis

As a proud Bihari I am appalled by actors Arjun Kapoor and Vikrant Massey’s ‘Bihari’ accents in the trailer ofMohit Suri’s Hamari Adhuri Gilrfriend, sorry, Half Girlfriend. For those who haven’t read Chetan Bhagat’s trite novel—unfortunately, I have—Arjun plays Madhav Jha and Massey(an exceptionally talented actor otherwise, here reduced to hamming in Mr Kapoor’s inspiring company) plays his best friend Shailesh.

At several high-points in the hysterical trailer Massey  is seen warning and reprimanding Madhav for being led up the garden path by  the love of his life Riya, played with leggy  authoritativeness by Shradha Kapoor who badly needs a hit after superbombs like Rock On 2 and Ok Jaanu….Yes, that was the name of her last film…OkJaanu.

If you think that’s corny what about Half Girlfriend? It sounds like  a cruel joke on someone who’s just suffered a serious case of coitus interruptus. Every character in the trailer seems to love the title, though. They keep saying ‘Half Girlfriend’ so many times I wondered if they were hoping to multiply the halves into something complete.

But the trailer of Half  Girlfriend remained halfbaked till the  end. The accents and performances  matched the mood and intention of the film’s  producer Ekta Kapoor’s soap operas. Even Seema Biswas who plays Madhav  ‘Arjun’ Jha’s mother did not remain unaffected by the looming mood of exaggerated bravado that fills the rancid air of this Mohit Suri(Hamari Adhuri Kahaani) film about a boy from Bihar who chases  the girl of his dreams all the way from Patna to New York

The plot shamelessly advocates stalking at a time when social protesters like Maneka Gnadhi have gone on-record to  blame Hindi films for promoting eveteasing and unwanted courtship.

The  thing about Chetan Bhagat’s Bihari hero  is that he has only one agenda in life. How to get his ‘HalfGilrfriend’ to say yes. Director Mohit Suri seems to have made no effort to explore the inner world of Madhav’s obsessive  attachment to the idea of love. Is he a repressed Romeo or psychotic Lothario? Arjun Kapoor doesn’t seem to care. He is so busy holding on to his ‘Bihari’ accent that the character’s compunctions beyond the spoken words seem to slither into a sphere of sullen incompetence.

Going by its awful trailer Half Girlfriend seems so faithful to the its adaptive source that one could  almost read between the lines.Except that there is nothing to read. This is an imbecile’s guide to how to win your hi-figirlfriend even if she says no in every possible language.

Pink, anyone?

Trailer Rating: **(2 stars)

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