Tu Jhoothi Main Makkaar: A sweet, honest and relatable romcom with superb performances
Still from Luv Ranjan's Tu Jhoothi Main Makkaar.
  • Release Date: – 08/03/2023
  • Cast: – Ranbir Kapoor, Shraddha Kapoor, Anubhav Singh Bassi, Dimple Kapadia
  • Director: – Luv Ranjan

Women have always been the antagonists in Luv Ranjan films. He and his films were taken apart by the feminists and wokes for this recurring attribute in his film but that never detracted him from doing what his heart and mind desired. His women had absolutely no redeeming qualities and his heroes were always adorable, funny, and honest men who were brutally trampled by the women.

In his latest film, Luv Ranjan takes a few steps back on the unabashed women vilification and comes up with a character who for once has her own and relatable reasons for breaking the heart of a man who she had evidently fallen in love with.

Mickey (Ranbir Kapoor) and Tinni (Shraddha Kapoor) meet in the picturesque locales of Spain and fall in love after Mickey refuses take “no” for an answer and Tinni has no one better to spend the rest of her life with. Once they return to India things take a sudden turn when the families of both Mickey and Tinni decide to get them married. Tinni has a change of heart and now wants to break up with Mickey and that’s when trouble starts. Why Tinni wants to break up? Will Mickey ever learn that Tinni is playing him for a fool? How will the families react to it? Will their relationship survive? These are just some of the questions that drive the narrative of the film.

I thoroughly enjoyed the balanced take of the story on both Mickey and Tinni’s view of the relationship and their respective predicaments. Both the characters have solid and relatable reasons for doing what they are shown doing. Ranjan decides to keep Tinni’s reason for wanting a breakup under the wrap and paints the girl as a villain for a while. These portions are used to extract the situational comedy and then as we gradually understand Tinni’s side of the story, the film uses those portions to drive for some impactful and emotionally potent scenes and exchanges. The film never forgets to document the love that the two characters have for each other. While it may seem odd but it is a fact that both love each other dearly but due to some strange circumstances, Tinni wants to end the relationship.

There will be many who will question the manner in which the relationship between the two is shown developing. If not anything the speed at which it happens and the believability of the relationship that the two forges will come as a surprise to many and many of these audiences will shun the film for the lack of realism. For me, it was believable and acceptable. I know for a fact that two people can fall in love with each other uncontrollably in a short period and then stay that way for the rest of their lives. No one knows what one person likes in another. Thus, it is possible for girls to fall for cheesy pickup lines and fall in love with a guy who she knows for only 6 days. It is also possible for her to contemplate marriage with this guy and meet her parents the very next day return to their country.

The comedy of the film is great as has always been the case with Luv Ranjan films. The majority of the comedy is extracted from the interactions between the couple and their dynamics with Mickey’s family which consists of a gamut of different characters. Each of these characters is loud and has their own take on every matter pertaining to the relationship and the underlying family dynamics. This leads to some hilarious moments. Ranjan also makes it a point to reference other Bollywood stereotypes and his own previous films and characters to extract comic relief that will most definitely appeal a little more to people who are well-versed in the films of Luv Ranjan.

One thing about the comedy that could be a problem here is the monologues. Unlike Pyaar Ka Punchnama, the monologues here feel unnecessarily wordy, unintelligible, and lack comedy and punch. There is also an overabundance of monologues and when the character of Mannu Dobas (Anubhav Singh Bassi) yells out at Mickey and begs him to shut up, he is in reality resonating the exact feeling running through the hearts and minds of the audiences. The monologues are not just restricted to the protagonist. They are mouthed by all foreseeable characters and that is not a good thing. In a film like Pyaar Ka Punchnama, the monologue was used as a novelty and it was funny, relatable, and intelligible. No such luck here though.

The performances are the most important aspect of this film since the story goes haywire and believability goes for a toss every now and then. Ranbir Kapoor is a fantastic actor and he is able to sell his character of Mickey from start to finish with clinical ease and natural charm. What I found wonderful was the fact that he toggles between comedy and highly emotional and dramatic moments very easily. The fact that the seriousness of these moments is never diluted and that I was able to feel the weight of the emotions involved in it was ensured by how well these scenes were played out by Ranbir and Shraddha. Ranbir’s comic timing is top-notch and as a character that has the exact same sensibilities that Ranbir shares with this generation, he is wonderful and a delight to watch throughout.

Shraddha Kapoor hardly gets her dues when she performs as well as she did here. She may not be a bombshell and it doesn’t make much sense to cast her as someone so pretty that she disarms someone who looks and acts like Ranbir Kapoor in one dance number. Apart from that, I couldn’t find any faults with her performance. She is brilliant in the dramatic sequences where she is conflicted between her love for Mickey and her inability to continue the relationship with him for a very strange reason. There are two scenes between the two that form the emotional core of the film and in these two scenes, she does exceedingly well. One of these is a long romantic kiss after which all hell breaks loose and the other comes towards the end when she realizes that she has been played by Ranbir and reveals her true feelings for him. Sharadha’s overall essay is elevated by these scenes immensely.  

The supporting cast of the film is equally brilliant. Anubhav Singh Bassi, Boney Kapoor, Dimple Kapadia et all bring their A-game to the film. The fact that each of these cast members dials up or down their performances to match up with the leading pair ensures that their chemistry is always on point. I loved Bassi and believe that he should be given more such roles. He, however, needs to work a little on his expressions and bring about a little more range.

The film does falter on logic. The film does get a little tedious in the initial moments in the first half and then again in the second half. The film does get over-the-top when a couple that has just broken up grooves to a “thumka” song at a family get-together. All this is fine in routine Bollywood fare but this is not how Luv Ranjan films work and there is a certain amount of expectation from him. I feel that this film would have worked better had it been shorter by 20 minutes, had a few songs lesser, and taken a more grounded and believable approach to the storytelling. Believe me! That was very much possible. All Ranjan had to do was sit on the writing table and create conflicts and resolutions that didn’t need any conducive coincidences or plot armor to happen.

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Having said all that, the film still remains entertaining throughout. The comedy works. The emotional bits work too. Most importantly, Ranjan shows both sides of the conflict and is able to keep a level head throughout and never takes the side of one of the characters. This feels strange coming from Luv Ranjan but does offer his regular viewers an element of surprise and enjoyment in this newfound direction of his storytelling. Most importantly, whatever he shows in terms of the conflict and resolution in the film is well-earned, properly discussed, reasoned with, and justified which does a world of good for the film. Tu Jhoothi Main Makkaar is an entertaining fair. It would be a good idea to watch this film in theaters with friends and family as on OTT, chances are, you will skip a lot of it.

Rating: 3/5 (3 out of 5 Stars)

The views expressed in this article are that of the reviewer and do not reflect EastMojo’s position.

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