Ayushmann Khurrana Charms in a Chaotic Comedy Sequel

Dream Girl 2 Movie Review: In Raaj Shaandilyaa’s latest cinematic venture, “Dream Girl 2,” the talented Ayushmann Khurrana once again proves his versatility by taking on the role of Karam/Pooja, adding a touch of his magic to this chaotic yet entertaining comedy.

Transitioning from being Bollywood’s poster boy to embodying the essence of the “Dream Girl,” Ayushmann Khurrana’s risk-taking spirit is commendable. Portraying the character of ‘Pooja’ is no small feat, and Khurrana dives into it with full commitment. The question that looms, however, is whether this daring move pays off. On the surface, “Dream Girl 2” boasts audacity, unapologetic humor, and sheer entertainment. But labeling it as a mere slapstick or no-brainer would undermine the nuanced comedic aspects that require the audience’s engagement.

Dream Girl 2 Movie Review

Director Raaj Shaandilyaa reintroduces us to Pooja, who we met in the 2019 film “Dream Girl.” This time, Pooja returns in a more daring and uninhibited avatar. While Ayushmann Khurrana pours in his swag and sass to the character, “Dream Girl 2” falls short of hitting a home run.

The narrative is well-intentioned, delivering laughter through witty one-liners, clever jokes, and cinematic references. Some of these references land well, while others fall flat. Amid the humor, there are instances of insensitivity that raise concerns, particularly a dialogue that perpetuates the misconception that mental health struggles are exclusive to the affluent.

The film parades a medley of characters, ranging from masterful performances to lackluster ones. Discussing these characters could inadvertently divulge half of the plot, but it’s worth noting that the assortment itself becomes a defining feature of the storyline.

The plot revolves around Karamveer, alias Karam, who assumes the identity of Pooja (Ayushmann Khurrana) to win the heart of Pari (Ananya Panday). Pari’s father, portrayed by Manoj Joshi, sets a challenging condition for Karam. He must settle Jagjit Singh’s (Annu Kapoor) debts, amass a substantial bank balance, and secure a stable future. In a quest for quick money, Karam turns into the bar dancer Pooja under the guidance of his father and best friend Smiley (Manjot Singh). However, this transformation is just the beginning of a convoluted journey.

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The complexity increases when Smiley, simultaneously pursuing his love interest, advises Karam to don the role of a sex psychiatrist, leading to unforeseen complications. In parallel, Smiley orchestrates a marriage between Pooja and the depressed Shah Rukh (Abhishek Bannerjee), entangling the characters in a web of mistaken identities and absurd situations.

Adding to the chaos, various characters vie for Pooja’s hand in marriage, including the bar owner Sona Bhaiya (Vijay Raaj) and a bank official (Ranjan Ranjan Raj). The narrative unfolds into a series of hilarious misadventures involving over-the-top personas, including Sakina’s adopted brother (Rajpal Yadav) and grandfather (Asrani), along with a thrice-married aunt Jumani (Seema Pahwa) who develops an interest in Karam.

“Dream Girl 2” maintains a brisk pace throughout its two-hour runtime, rarely allowing for dull moments. However, there are instances of uneven pacing and weaker writing, particularly when Pooja’s character isn’t in focus. The film leans into slapstick humor consistently, a result of the joint efforts of Shaandilyaa and co-writer Naresh Kathooria.

Ayushmann Khurrana’s portrayal, whether as Karam or Pooja, remains a standout. His commitment to the character, evident in his body language, dance moves, and feminine voice, is impressive. While the film’s execution of crossdressing is generally tasteful, there are instances where the writing could have been more refined. Although “Dream Girl 2” might not rank among Ayushmann’s best works, it undeniably showcases his dedication to challenging roles.

In contrast, Ananya Panday’s role feels limited, leaving her with little room to display her acting prowess. The supporting cast, including Paresh Rawal, Seema Pahwa, and Annu Kapoor, contributes significantly to Ayushmann’s performance.

Credit: Youtube

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