New Delhi: Some films leave you speechless because of how well they’re made, and some render you incapable of putting in words how horrific they are. Sunny Deol directorial Pal Pal Dil Ke Paas falls into the second category.
Karan Deol, Sunny’s son, makes his debut alongside newcomer Sahher Bambba in this love story, which is reminiscent of his father’s films before he became Bollywood’s typical angry man.
Karan plays Karan Sehgal, a young man who owns a resort in Manali that offers the best adventure sports and trekking that money can buy. Sahher plays Sahher Sethi, a popular video blogger who reviews hotels for a living.
Sahher goes to review Karan’s resort and starts off on the wrong foot with him, as the two embark on a week-long trek in the mountains. As the days progress, the two warm up to each other and fall in love. After the trip, the two take their relationship further and meet Sahher’s parents. But her jealous ex-boyfriend, who happens to be the son of an influential Member of Parliament, plans to ruin their relationship and exact his revenge.
Debuts are notoriously nerve-wracking and obviously a little shaky for any actor, but Karan puts in zero effort to actually act — perhaps, because he can’t. Even a novice knows that emoting and facial expression are vital elements of acting.
The debutant’s acting skills are practically non-existent, so much so that it almost feels like he took up a challenge to make a film without showing any emotion whatsoever. Whether he is happy, sad, angry or flirtatious, his face and remain the same — may be an inspiration for extras playing a corpse.
Sahher, on the other hand, is a slight shade better as she tries to pull off the energetic, headstrong female protagonist. However, in her enthusiasm to bring out her character, she goes overboard and just comes off shrill, screechy and downright annoying.
Over-the-top dialogues, sloppy editing
The storyline is staccato to begin with and just changes completely in the second half, taking rather bizarre turns. The first half has no connection with the second half — almost making it two separate films. The first half is visually pleasing, thanks to the breathtaking mountains of Himachal and is packed with a lot of panoramic drone shots. The second half, then, deals with abusive relationships, feminism, victim-shaming, and politics. Perfectly logical.
But even the snow-capped mountains of Manali cannot save the film from stretching on and on with forgettable music, OTT dialogues and sloppy editing.
In the first 30 minutes, the audience sees Sehhar vomit and lose consciousness due to altitude sickness — and that really is the perfect summary of how the audience will feel while watching the movie.