Starring: Kareena Kapoor, Arjun Rampal, Randeep Hooda
Director: Madhur Bhandarkar
[highlight]Rating : 2/5 (Two stars out of five)[/highlight][divider]

The silky-red curtains from Madhur Bhandarkar’s masterpiece pull away, only to reveal a fashionably videographic account comprising of every single Bollywood gossip ever heard. Not only it takes the edge off the film (which could’ve been a lot brisker), but also adds up to the ‘drag’ value. And yes, the scripting indeed is quite clichéd. There’s no new ingredient in Madhur’s very new recipe. Just the same thing we’ve tasted time and again. Hmm.

The protagonist Mahi Arora (Kareena Kapoor) lives a bipolar Monroe-ish life, with tsunamis of emotional turmoils inside, and a calm breezy life outside. Mahi has had a troubled childhood that infuses a dash of masochism into her. Mahi totally falls for superstar Aryan Khanna (Arjun Rampal), who is going through a divorce and doesn’t reciprocate the same commitment and eventually dumps her. Totally heartbroken, she seeks therapy and starts scheming the resurrection of her life. In the process, she finds herself a new high-profile Punjabi cricketer boyfriend (Randeep Hooda), using whose connections she’s on a film-signing spree, and that’s where at a later stage, the ultimate realization dawns upon her that to continue reigning over the industry she’ll have to compromise her ethics and morals big time. And compromise she does.

To Mahi, Kareena offers the best of her meat. For her spectrum of expressions from erraticism to insecurity to disappointment to narcissism to the total vulnerability of a dying star, she truly makes hay while the limelight shines. Arjun Rampal gives a credible performance as well. Randeep Hooda should have had some more screen time- he was very pleasant as the cupid-struck cricketer. Pallavi Sharda is spectacular. Divya Dutta as the crafty PR agent impresses. Others- Shahana Goswami, Lilette Dubey, Helen, Mugdha Godse, Ranvir Shorey and Sanjay Suri, keep the narrative flowing with their brief roles.

Salim-Sulaiman’s music is a let-down, though the ‘Halkat Jawani’ track looks good on the big screen. Niranjan Iyengar’s dialogues are feisty. A few instances in the story seem pretty unwanted, and the editorial scissors could’ve made a huge difference here. Predictability sinks in, but the stylish camera work does well to keep viewers glued to their seats. All in all, this movie deserves a watch for the performances. And seeing how deep the script dives in the pool of voyeurism, the cash registers could be heard ringing for a while now.