Dolly Ki Doli**1/4
Dir: Abhishek Dogra
Starring: Sonam Kapoor, Rajkummar Rao, Mohammed Zeeshan Ayub, Pulkit Samrat, Varun Sharma, Archana Puran Singh
The first fifteen minutes of the film are terrific, giving us a cute romance, a few laughs, Rajkummar Rao (Queen, Kai Po Che) in top form as an earnest yet unpolished Haryana Jatt, and a solid plot twist to top it all off.
Unfortunately, the rest of the movie never quite matches up to the quality of its beginning despite there being quite a few things to like about it.
The performances are uniformly good from the supporting cast. Apart from Rao, there is the hilarious Archana Puran Singh as a bossy Punjabi mother (she brings the house down in a couple of scenes), Varun Sharma as her wimpish son, and the increasingly impressive Mohammad Zeeshan Ayub (I am looking forward to seeing his career develop) as Dolly’s cohort unable to express his affection for her. There are also some genuine laughs along the way. The movie’s plot is also reasonably original and with only a 90 minutes running time there’s no excess flab to deal with.
However, the script quickly becomes repetitive as Dolly and her gang pull off the same con over and over again and the longer the movie goes on it becomes harder to believe that nobody has caught on to them yet. Sonam Kapoor holds centre stage but is hampered by a script which is never able to flesh out her character fully so her performance comes across as one-note.
The subplot between Zeeshan Ayub’s character and Dolly also never goes anywhere. The attempt to put a feminist spin on the whole enterprise with a message of female empowerment never convinces either. Ultimately, the movie’s minuses outweigh its pluses.
There’s a surprise guest appearance near the end of the movie.
Cut to chase: Just brilliant.