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Plan A Plan B movie review: The Riteish Deshmukh, Tamannaah Bhatia starrer is tepid and flat

Plan A Plan B movie cast: Riteish Deshmukh, Tamannaah Bhatia, Poonam Dhillon, Kusha Kapila
Plan A Plan B movie director: Shashanka Ghosh
Plan A Plan B movie rating: One and a half stars

An uptight lawyer specialising in divorce, and a match-maker with a broken heart is a combo which spells rom com heaven. It’s the chalk and cheese principle. He is suited-booted, his beard is neatly combed, and his shirts buttoned down. He needs everything to be aligned neatly. She is still grieving for a lost love, uses ice cream as a panacea for all ills, and appears in carefully tousled hair-and-attire which must have taken a stylist hours to put together. They just happen to have co-working spaces right next to each other, and sparks fly.

Correction. That’s what should have happened. But neither Riteish Deshmukh, who has proved he has fine comedic bones many times over, nor Tamannaah Bhatia who is capable of being expressive, display any discernible chemistry: the camera very decorously gives us the backs of their heads when they finally get down to canoodling, leaving us wondering: did they really kiss?

It begins with Kaustubh Chougule (Deshmukh), aka Kosty, aka Caustic giving a lecture to a couple on the brink. She is from the North, he is from the South, and that’s enough reason for our Kosty to enumerate the difference between Bhangra and Bharatnatyam, ghee and coconut oil, and ‘pongal’ and ‘dangal’. Eh?

Meanwhile, Nirali Vora (Bhatia), who runs a matrimonial venture with her mum (Dhillon), is all for cementing cracks between warring couples, and has nothing but contempt for Kosty’s mantra for marriage, which he terms as ‘bedroom se boredom ka safar’. In turn, he scoffs at her ‘Matchmaking In The Time Of Tinder’ enterprise: why marry when you can just do it?

Some effort has been put into the bits where the two snarl at each other: you catch sight of the seminal volume ‘Passionate Marriage’, and you know that someone has had the right idea. I had hopes that there would be some zest to the proceedings, given the director has given us the delightful ‘Khubsoorat’ and ‘Veere Di Wedding’. But as soon as the attraction-despite-everything arc begins, the film turns decisively tepid and flat, and the risible dialogues that one was ignoring up until then, start becoming troublesome. When was the last time you heard the word ‘rakhail’ in jest? Not funny.

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