Did you say “Loins of Punjab”???

loins_m1.jpgThe name of the movie invites an instant reaction of disbelief. It then gives way to various speculations. What could the movie be all about?? Well, for those who haven’t figured out yet, don’t let the imagination run too wild!

This film, in one piece, can be put in the genre of films, which revolve around the lives of Indians in America. It goes without saying, that the film’s central characters, which are usually too many, are eccentric Indians who apparently, are a misfit in the Indian as well the American society.

The story is a rip-off of all the talent shows that have been doing rounds on the television. Based on a ‘Desi-Idol’ show to be held in New Jersey, which has ‘millions’ of Indians and one American participating, the film holds the interest of the audience till the very end.

The show is sponsored by an enterprise called “The Loins of Punjab”, and that is the only connecting link between the title of movie and its story. If it is possible to typecast Indians in American as various types, then one character from every kind was present to take part in the show.

There is seventeen year old Preeti Patel (Ishitta Sharma), who is forced to study medicine because the prospective grooms would like the girls to be lawyers and doctors. She is supported by her extended Gujarati clan in the contest, who leave no stone unturned to ensure her victory, even if it meant taking out one of the gay judge to a strip club. As a wannabe Bollywood starlet, Sanya Rehman (Seema Rehmani) dons an Indian look with a fake accent, for the love of Desi-Idol. A conniving socialite, Mrs. Rita Kapoor (Shabana Azmi), with power, money and contacts, is eyeing the title to give her instant fame in the chic social circle. The most interesting character in the movie is Josh Cohen (Micheal Raimondi); an American who had proclaims his love for India, more often than not, by singing songs from 70’s Bollywood films.

Apart from the chaotic humour that prevails in the movie, subtle messages in the form of puns are left here and there in the movie. For example, an American couple who happened to stay in the same hotel which was the venue for the contest, innocently mistake a Sikh for a terrorist. Reasons quoted, “He wore black clothes and kept talking about Bhangra (read Bomb with an unconvinced expression on your face)”. One of the participants of the contest, an Indian by the name of Saddam Hussain is fired from his job for reasons best known.

The best part about the film is its share of the stereotypical Bollywood moment. Though they are picked from the mainstream Indian films, they bear no resemblance to any of them in terms of their appeal to the audience. As the unwritten law says, the movie had to conclude with a “Happy Ending”. But this time you don’t seem to mind it.

The direction by Manish Acharya is satisfactory and so is the screenplay. The background score kept reminding me of the grand Indian weddings and the fine-tuned orchestra band that plays Hindi songs in their own pitch. The dialogues of the film are definitely the clear winners.

All in all, it’s a good one and a half hour spent watching something that is expected from these types of movies.