UTV Spotboy, Anurag Kashyap Films Pvt. Ltd. and Jar Pictures’ Luv Shuv Tey Chicken Khurana (UA) is the story of a Punjabi joint family living in a town of Punjab. Omi Khurana (Kunal Kapoor), an orphan, who had defied his grandfather (Vinod Nagpal) and paternal uncle, Hemraj’s (Rajen­dra Sethi), wishes and run away from home to make a future for himself in the UK, returns after more than a de­cade to Punjab to find that the grand­pa, Dar-ji, has had a memory loss and can’t even speak. His paternal uncle has still not forgotten the hurt he had caused the family but the aunt (Seema Kaushal) showers him with a lot of love and attention. Harman (Huma Qureshi), on whom he had a crush in his adolescent days, is now a doctor who is to be married to his own cousin, Jeet (Rahul Bagga), son of his Hemraj uncle.

Omi has returned to India to ask his family for monetary help as he owes money to Shanty (Munish Makhija) in the UK, who has threatened to kill him if he did not repay him his pounds. But here in India, Omi is shocked to see that his family has fallen upon bad times as the dhaba his grandfather used to run very successfully, has had to be shut down because of his illness and because nobody else knows the recipe of the chicken dish he used to prepare and which used to be the hottest-selling item on the menu. Harman’s brother, Lovely (Mukesh Chhabra), trying to diversify into the real estate business, convinces Omi to sell the dhaba to Kehar Singh (Vipin Sharma), who is prepared to pay Rs. 1 crore for it provided he was also given the recipe for the chicken preparation.

Omi resolves to sell the dhaba so that he can repay his debt. Dar-ji has also just recently died, making Omi’s job that much easier. He tries his level best to know what ingredients Dar-ji used for the chicken preparation and one day, by a stroke of good luck, learns of that one odd ingredient which made the chicken dish so delicious.

What is the incident which lays bare the secret recipe before Omi? What is that special ingredient? Does he ultimately sell the dhaba? Does he run away with the money? What hap­pens to his crush on Harman? Does Harman marry Omi or Jeet?

Sumit Batheja’s story about a Punjabi family and its quirks, joys, sorrows, trials and tribulations is interesting mainly because of the several colourful characters in and around the family. The story line is quite thin but if, in spite of that, his screenplay holds the audience’s interest, it is because of the interesting characters and the punch-packed and fun-filled dialogues, also penned by him. In particular, the characters of Omi’s paternal aunt and her good-for-nothing brother, Titu (Rajesh Sharma), are so interesting that they light up the screen whenever they come. In comparison, the romantic scenes are not even half as entertaining. The scenes of Omi learning to prepare the chicken dish are too lengthy and boring and they fail to bring forth the intended humour. But the biggest minus point is that at the end of the day, the premise about a recipe looks too trivial for a film. The climax is quite unique and, therefore, enjoyable.

Kunal Kapoor does a fair job but seems laidback in his approach. Huma Qureshi also lacks the spark and spunk of a young heroine although she performs ably. Rajesh Sharma is excellent in the role of Titu. It would not be an exaggeration to say that he brings a smile to the face of the viewer whenever he comes on the screen. His acting often evokes laughter, too. Vinod Nagpal is natural to the core. Rahul Bagga does a fair job as Jeet Khurana. Rajendra Sethi does a truly fine job as Omi’s uncle, Hemraj Khurana. Seema Kaushal shines as Omi’s aunt, Lata Rani Khurana. Mukesh Chhabra performs ably as Harman’s brother, Lovely. Dolly Ahluwalia has her moments as Buaji. Munish Makhija makes his presence felt as Shanty. As Manty, Herry Tangri is quite nice. Anangsha Biswas is natural in the role of Shama. Anjum Batra also acts well as Dalidri. Vipin Sharma makes his presence felt in a brief role as Kehar Singh. Faisal Rashid (as young Dar-ji), Nimrat Kaur (as Muskaan Khurana), Vicky Kaushal (as young Omi), Shivam Khanna (as young Jeet), baby Himanshi Gupta (as Khushi), Balwinder Singh (as Harman’s father), Gurpreet Brar (as Harman’s mother), Charu Bedi (as Rimpi), Mandeep Kaur (as Rimpi’s mother) and the others provide adequate support.

Sameer Sharma’s maiden attempt at direction is good. He has effectively created the atmosphere of a small-town middle-class Punjabi family and has provided entertaining moments. However, had he made the romantic scenes equally interesting, he would have had the youth eating out of his palm. Also, the subject he has chosen has inherent limitations for a film. Amit Trivedi’s music goes beautifully with the backdrop of the film. The ‘Kikli’ song is the best while the ‘Motorwada’, ‘Luni hasi’ and title tracks are also appealing. Shellee’s lyrics are appropriate. The picturisation of the ‘Kikli’ number is cute. Amit Trivedi’s background score is effective. Mitesh Mir­chandani’s camerawork is nice. Apurva Motiwale and Ashish Mhatre’s editing is effective.

On the whole, Luv Shuv Tey Chicken Khurana is good in parts only. Its character actors entertain more than its lead actors although the lead actors have full-fledged roles. Also, it seems to be a case of much ado about very little, if not nothing. Be­sides, its release during the dull pre-Diwali days will come in the way of realisation of its full box-office potential. Its ordinary promotion and release with so many other films this week have already resulted in a rather dull start.

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  1. Pingback: Luv Shuv Tey Chicken Khurana Review | BollyTrailers

  2. Pingback: Vidur’s Film Diary – November 2012 « Vidur's Blog

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