Badrinath Ki Dulhania

Badrinath Ki Dulhania’ is a romantic comedy starring Varun Dhawan, Alia Bhatt, Gauhar Khan, Shweta Basu Prasad, Aakanksha Singh, Aprakshit Khurrana among others. The film has been directed by Shashank Khaitan.

The movie opens with an explanation about its patriarchal setting where boys are considered an ‘asset’ by virtue of their sex, while girls need to remain within ‘limits’ and are a ‘responsibility’ due to the prevalent dowry system.

Badrinath Bansal aka Badri is 10 standard pass and lives in Jhansi. His father, Amarnath Bansal’s (Rituraj Singh), is a wealthy, but overtly strict and dominating businessman-cum-moneylender. Being the son of a wealthy father, Badri is of the belief that whoever marries him will be lucky to have him. He happens to lay his eyes on the free-spirited, ambitious girl from Kota, Vaidehi Trivedi, at a wedding party and immediately falls for her. Vaidehi already has a past, but Badri is not bothered and starts pursuing her relentlessly for marriage. Vaidehi is not interested and rejects him every time. However, she finally agrees to his marriage proposal, but on condition that he has to find a groom for her elder sister Kiran (Aakanksha Singh) first, so that her family’s ‘responsibility’ is lessened. So, Badri, along with his best friend Somdev (Sahil Vaid), who also owns a match-making portal, they hunt down Bhushan (Aparshakti Khurana) as the groom for Kiran. The elders of the families make their ‘deals’ and it is decided to marry off both Kiran and Vaidehi on the same day. However, on the D-day, Vaidehi runs away, leaving Badri’s father furious, who orders his son to find Vaidehi and bash her in public to ‘teach’ a lesson. Does Badri give in to his dominating father’s orders, or his love for Vaidehi wins? Why did Vaidehi run away from the marriage? Does she reciprocate the love of a hardly-literate Badri? The answers unfold further in the movie.  

‘Badrinath Ki Dulhania’ is an entertaining film rich on content, emotions, humour and good performances, keeping in line with the current tide of Bollywood films that celebrate powerful liberated women. And in doing so, the film highlights on the important social issues of gender equality and dowry system, and does it in a non-preachy manner. There are also some hard-hitting scenes. While the basic plotline has a seen-and-heard-before feel, it has a fresh take, coated with funny and quirky lines and the narrative et al. The climax is also very predictable, but the chartbuster title track in the end might make the audience stated till the end credits roll.

Alia and Varun showcase their natural charm and chemistry. Alia has put up a very fine performance as a courageous and independent woman who refuses to succumb to the notion that marriage is the most important thing in a girl’s life and she doesn’t let herself be emotionally manipulated. Varun and Sahil’s goofiness and great comic timing make for most of the laughs in the film. Varun’s character undergoes a huge change in the second half, and the actor has showed it very well. the supporting characters have also played their parts well.

The film is fun in its first half, but the second half seem a bit stretched. Overall, ‘Badrinath Ki Dulhania’, with an average story makes for a fun watch for its narrative and performance by Alia and Varun, and off course the great soundtrack. Those who love rom-coms will definitely like it.