Cast: Arjun Kapoor, Shraddha Kapoor
Director: Mohit Suri
Producers: Shobha Kapoor, Ekta Kapoor, Mohit
Writers: Ishita Moitra Udhwani
What's Yay: The music (barring the English
songs) come as a breather when you are least impressed with what's
happening on screen.
What's Nay: Mediocre performances, dragging
plot, bland direction
Popcorn Refill: A quick trip to the loo or for
a popcorn refill won't do much harm!
Iconic Moment: Looking for some laughs amidst
the romance? Watch out for the scene where Bill Gates is seen
listening to Madhav's speech in Dumraon. The bad patch-up work done
to show Gates will surely evoke some unintentional laughs!
When you find the name Chetan Bhagat rolling in the start
credits, you already know what you have signed up for! Nevertheless
for those who haven't read the novel, here's how the plot
Half Girlfriend opens with a heart-broken Madhav Jha (Arjun
Kapoor) who learns that Riya Somani (Shraddha Kapoor) has left him.
The film then rewinds back to the time when they first met at St.
Stephen's college in Delhi.
Madhav is a Hindi speaking boy from Patna who has secured a seat
in the college under sports quota. On the other hand, Riya is a
posh city-bred girl who has an affinity for 'rains'. It's love at
first sight for Madhav on the basketball court. His friends caution
him that 'bawaal' Riya is out of his league. But Madhav has his
mommy's advice to reckon upon- 'haaro mat ... haar ko
Pretty soon, Madhav and Riya become good friends as they both
share a common interest- basketball. A typical love story of a
poor-guy-falls-in-love-with-a-stinky-rich-girl is just cooking up.
But hey, there's a catch! Riya has set the rules straight. 'Main
tumhari girlfriend nahin. But I can be your half girlfriend', she
tells Madhav and the poor lad is too dazzled to react.
While they are trying to fit into this new relationship, one day
our Romeo, provoked by his friends to test Riya's 'love' tries to
get touchy-feely with her in his room. When Riya tries to rebuke
his advances, he throws in a crassy line, 'Deti hai toh de varna
kat le' and almost ends up phyically assaulting her.
Time to break up! Riya decides to settle down with her childhood
buddy Rohan. Madhav meanwhile is left with a broken
Enter a major life transition. Madhav, still suffering from
pangs of separation, returns to his hometown Simraon. He
decides to devote his life to worthwhile causes, like improving the
village school, and taking up English lessons so he can get a grant
from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
But hey what's a love story without a twist! Enter Riya Somani
who is now a divorcee. Will old feelings be rekindled or will she
be Madhav's 'Half Girlfriend' forever?
Mohit Suri's last film Hamari Adhuri Kahaani had me pulling my
hair in despair when he reduced the super talented Vidya Balan to a
crying banashee in the film. Two years later, the man returns back
to the spotlight with Half Girlfriend.
While Bhagat's novel isn't a piece of pure literature
with a great storyline, the filmmaker too doesn't get a bigger
playground to display his directorial skills in terms of plot. His
characters are superficial and fail to keep you engrossed. They
just seem to be fleeting in and out of the scene without evoking
any emotions in you.
Arjun Kapoor is miscast as Madhav Jha. His struggle to get the
Bihari accent right is quite evident throughout the film. Barring a
scene or two, he fails to make a mark.
Shraddha Kapoor does what she usually does in all her films. She
flutters her eyelashes, strums a guitar and pretends to lip-sync a
terrible English song that's more like a noise.
Vikrant Massey starts off on a promising note only to be saddled
down by a poorly-sketched role. One wonders what's a talent like
Seema Biswas doing in the film? Rhea Chakraborthy is wasted in her
The lacklustre screenplay doesn't catch your attention. Outdated
dialogues like 'Kuch cheezein aisi tootati hai ki unka doobara
judna possible nahi hota ... sirf daraarein reh jaati hai'
masquerade as poetic lines.
Vishnu Rao's cinematography works fine with the film but one
wished that the editing scissors would have been a bit more sharper
to avoid the jarring narrative.
'Phir Bhi Tumko Chahunga', 'Baarish' and 'Tu Hi Hain' stand out
in the album. On the other hand, the English tracks are a complete
disappointment and stick out like a sore thumb.
Director Mohit Suri seems to have taken the 'half' in the film's
title a tad too seriously when it came to big
screen. Mediocre performances and sluggish pace play a major
The film has a couple of instances where Riya (Shraddha) is seen
crooning 'Stay A Little Longer'. Wonder if that was meant for the
restless lot of us who were waiting for the end credits to roll