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Actually, Mawra Hocane isn't half-bad in Bollywood flick Sanam Teri Kasam

Actually, Mawra Hocane isn't half-bad in Bollywood flick Sanam Teri Kasam

She cries, she dances, she cries some more... but her heart's in it, and it shows.
Updated 08 Feb, 2016

Not every film from Bollywood is a masterpiece; not all flicks from India are guaranteed to be hits. Despite this, former VJ and model/actress Mawra Hocane gets one of the meatiest roles ever written for a Pakistani in Bollywood (the first since Zeba Bakhtiar’s Henna 25 years ago), and, even though the story is flawed and heavily inspired by A Walk to Remember, delivers a powerful performance.

The film revolves around two neighbours – the woman is a 'nerd' working in a library and the man an ex-convict studying to be a lawyer.

These two mismatched individuals cross each other’s path and in the first half, Inder (Harshvardhan Rane) falls for Saru (Mawra Hocane). After a few meant-to-be-tragic-but-are-comic incidents, her parents disown her and she moves out of her house only to be taken in by Inder. He helps her get a makeover and, in true Bollywood fashion, she becomes the hottest gal in town.

Saru's crush, her colleague (Anurag Sinha), finally wakes up to her existence post-transformation and sends her a proposal, which she accepts. Saru continue to be ‘just friends’ with the unlucky Inder, who seems happy for her and even chaperones her to dates and shopping sprees.

(SPOILER ALERT)

However, fate is bent on uniting the film's hero and heroine: her suitor eventually backs out of their relationship and Saru falls in love with Inder. The second half of the film shows the tumultuous evolution of their relationship from friends to lovers.

Expect the Inder-Saru relationship to be topsy-turvy - Screengrab
Expect the Inder-Saru relationship to be topsy-turvy - Screengrab

Anybody who has seen A Walk To Remember will be familiar with this story, and some might say a predictable yet tried-and-test plot will yield positive results. However, to make a film with two newcomers in the lead (one of them a Pakistani) and with no big names in the cast is a risk and takes a big heart. Lucky for us, directors Radhika Rao and Vinay Sapru took the plunge.

Even before the film was realised Mawra was being criticised for 'crying too much,' something that was seen as an unfortunate hangover from her TV drama persona. I'm here to tell you it's true: she does cry a lot in the film. However, being miserable appears to be the requirement of the role so I don't fault her for it.


We can only criticise Mawra for being typecast as a tragic heroine when we stop producing sobfests in our own industry.


In fact, I think she was the best choice for the role of a damsel-in-distress who discovers confidence when she finds love. She has a lovely presence on screen and sometimes steals the show from her more seasoned co-stars like guest star Vijay Raaz.

She particularly shines in the more tragic moments of the film, such as when she learns that her father has disowned her. None of those sobbing scenes are over-the-top, and she has her countless sniff-sniff performances in Pakistan to thank for that.

She even dances well; the song Khench Meri Photo showcases her funny, goofy side and allows her to demonstrate that she does have range.

Being miserable appears to be the requirement of Mawra's role so one can't fault her for it - Screengrab
Being miserable appears to be the requirement of Mawra's role so one can't fault her for it - Screengrab

Mawra and Harsh share an excellent chemistry and look good together, which may make the viewer ignore the loopholes in their story. The two share a kiss in the film - the subject of some scandal - but it was necessitated by the script and not just present for the masala.

Tamil actor Harshvardhan Rane has certainly put in countless hours at the gym, but perhaps acting classes would have been a better investment. He remains in his comfort zone throughout the film, the result being that his character doesn't have depth. He reminds me of John Abraham and might do well as an action hero if he chooses his films wisely.


The two share a kiss in the film - the subject of some scandal - but it was necessitated by the script and not just present for the masala.


The vastly talented Anurag Sinha (who made his debut as a terrorist in Subhash Ghai’s Black & White) is wasted in the role of Abhimanyu and while his performance is competent, he doesn’t fit the role. Murli Sharma as the police officer provides comic relief whereas the father Manish Choudhari looks angry all the time for no reason.

Mawra in tipsy mode during 'Kheench Meri Photo' - Screengrab
Mawra in tipsy mode during 'Kheench Meri Photo' - Screengrab

This flick has no relation to the previously released Sanam Teri Kasam where Kamal Haasan and Reena Roy danced on RD Burman’s award-winning tunes, so I'm not sure why the title wasn't changed, it probably should have been.

One of my criticisms has to do with the film's length, it would have been more successful with skilled editing in the latter half. A general audience now only has stamina for a 2-hour movie, tops.

Sanam Teri Kasam is like many other ronay dhonay ki movies but in Pakistan, that’s the trend. We had Bin Roye last year, didn’t we? Just like that film, here we have our very own Mawra doing more or less the same stuff (more crying, less dancing) so why should we complain? I think we can only criticise Mawra for being typecast as a tragic heroine when we stop producing sobfests in our own industry.

Anyway, she needn't worry. Her star power will draw crowds towards the cinema and one hopes that the arrival of Katrina Kaif’s Fitoor (on 12th February) doesn’t destroy Sanam Teri Kasam at the box office.

Comments

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Muhammad Majid Feb 08, 2016 12:19pm
Lovely Mawra.
Recommend
Kamran Feb 08, 2016 12:23pm
The so called meatiest roles that she can get are in the Pakistani Dramas.
Recommend
malika Feb 08, 2016 12:30pm
mediocre at best
Recommend
sudeep Feb 08, 2016 12:32pm
Its also very similar to Hrishikesh Mukherjee's classic movie "Milli" (Amitabh Bachchan & Jaya). Having said that its a by far one of the best launch in Bollywood by any Pakistani newcomer ..
Recommend
Naveen Feb 08, 2016 12:41pm
She is a very talented actor
Recommend
rainman Feb 08, 2016 12:45pm
she has been accepted by Indian audience perhaps the best bollywood import from pakistan so for
Recommend
Nitin Feb 08, 2016 12:49pm
Somebody should provide enough food to Mawra. Look at her hand's vein in first photo. I admire her beauty and acting talent but she need to put some weight.
Recommend
Hari Feb 08, 2016 01:06pm
She is OK as an actress and beautiful too. She must be getting more roles in the future from Bollywood and even other Indian filim industries if she can improve.
Recommend
malika Feb 08, 2016 01:24pm
@Nitin you have raised a good point. Pakistani actresses are starving themselves for roles in bollywood. Not good for health
Recommend
TRUE INDIAN Feb 08, 2016 01:25pm
Mawar Hocane was the "scene stealer" in the film. Critics has praised her performance in the film.
Recommend
PKR Feb 08, 2016 01:30pm
She is looking trendy and should opt for more bold roles which will liberate her from the routine.She does show promise and audience would like to see more of her.
Recommend
A. A. Feb 08, 2016 01:56pm
I am curious. Going by the top picture, why does someone need to show a bit of skin? Was it part of the character? If yes then I am all for it. If not, why the need?
Recommend
faryal Feb 08, 2016 02:06pm
@Nitin she is my favorite actress but such these photos really made me sad!
Recommend
Bharatiya Oz from LA Feb 08, 2016 02:29pm
I don't like movies where actresses keep crying.. Bollywood movies should portray stronger women characters and it is need of the hour too.
Recommend
Adeel Feb 08, 2016 02:54pm
She is looking stunning , very beautiful and the most important good actor. We are all proud of Marwa and thankful that she has been accepted in bollywood.
Recommend
arvind74 Feb 08, 2016 03:16pm
This happens rarely for a debut: she wanted not to end up as just an eye candy heroine, so she got what she wanted. He was looking for an entry to Bollywood from southern side so he got what he wanted, as who in Delhi, UP and Punjab wants a pure "acting" actor, a raw type masculine personality is that is judged first. Liked the songs "Tera chehra" and " kheench meri photo" very much.
Recommend
Talk Sense Feb 08, 2016 03:28pm
So far the actresses who were lucky enough to land a role in a Bollywood flick, from Zeba Bakhtiyar to Veena Malik to Mahira Khan to Mawra. They have all flopped. A lot of noise was made when Bin Roye was released. But what happened? The movie wasn't even noticed in India. The reason why Pakistani actresses won't succeed in India is that Bollywood is a highly evolved industry. There is no space for conservative people in Indian cinema. Many a TV personalities have succeeded in Bollywood (e.g. Yami Gautam). Even if a Pakistani actress can achieve that level of success it will be quite an achievement.
Recommend
Pune-India Feb 08, 2016 04:03pm
@Hari: some girls are deliberately doing Diet for looking slim...
Recommend
R.Kannan Feb 08, 2016 04:05pm
@sudeep Come on Milli was a great fim with great actors & a strong story. Mawra has chosen the wrong film to debut. The story line was missing, the acting average, the direction directionless & the editing absent in this movie. I have even forgotten the name of thisutterly forgetable movie.
Recommend
Teaser Feb 08, 2016 04:09pm
@A. A. ..so u can open ur wallet and go to movie.
Recommend
Alanore Feb 08, 2016 04:59pm
Don’t compare a classy movie like Bin Roy with this movie with a out dated story line. Mahira Khan looked very classy in Bin Roy whereas Marva Hochen looked not classy.
Recommend
Madhududan Feb 08, 2016 06:20pm
Mawra aapa, another madhubala in the making.
Recommend
fayza Feb 08, 2016 08:11pm
Way to go....Job well done!
Recommend
Justwasif Feb 08, 2016 09:33pm
She is beautiful.... Thats it.
Recommend
Krish Feb 08, 2016 11:26pm
Mawra looks stunning in both the conservative and ultra modern look. It was Mawra all the way. If only the story had been better this movie could have been a blockbuster and she would have turned into a star overnight. Nowads people do not want any tragical and melancholic endings. They want the feel good stories. They want to go back home smiling. Unfortunately this film does not do that.
Recommend
Moin Khan Feb 09, 2016 02:48am
Sincerely wish Mawra Hocane makedebut in India. Her first success-oriented demand is like to grow for more Indian movies and we already heart of Chutki which should be a different and no sob movie as the title suggests. Mawra is a populare actor in her country from her drama roles esp Ahista Ahista and Maryam but she has not yet taken a role in a Pak movie (and perhaps will not take after her success in Indian films where a lot more money is there which hardly any producer in Pakistan can venture to offer her). Wish good luck to Mawra in her film career. I see her also going to Hollywood in a couple of years. She is very graceful and that is her commodity in demand.
Recommend
Akil Akhtar Feb 09, 2016 04:55am
Is her second name meant to be Hussain...spelled strangely
Recommend
Omrna Feb 09, 2016 06:30am
Fitoor is better
Recommend
>:) Feb 09, 2016 07:37am
Why is she in a bathtub? On a side note , the first time I saw this, I thought the dude killed her and this was a horror flicks of some sort.
Recommend
Raj India Feb 09, 2016 09:41am
Watched movie. STK may not perform as per expectations but Mawra will be a future bollywood star.
Recommend
Dipak Singh Feb 09, 2016 10:18am
Watched movie yesterday, Mawra is not bad but she must polishing her self & choosy for better result.
Recommend
Aamer Feb 09, 2016 11:50am
I saw Mawra's film, please do not compare it with Pakistani Film Bin Roye. Mahira Khan did a great job in that movie and made it worth watching. On the other hand Sanam Teri Kasam was boring cherry on top bad acting from Mawra. Just for a makeover they created all that drama. All Mawra had to do was take her glasses off and comb her hair. I just dont get it what was so special about this role.
Recommend
Anila Feb 09, 2016 03:15pm
Why do they forget their roots when they go to bollywood. Mawra, u r becoming next veena!
Recommend
tina Feb 09, 2016 03:29pm
i think most indians didnt even notice the fil. it came and went
Recommend
wasim Feb 09, 2016 11:13pm
Eventhough the movie is not bad and the telugu actor Harsh is also nice but now Indians r more interested in meaningful movies like "airlift,Bajrangi Bhaijan" etc & no need kissing or exposing, just a nice script is needed even if its a romantic movie,I think she would b lucky if she get a movie with Amir,Shahrukh or Salman also I think Indian actors r more talented than pakistani actors, may b Iam wrong in my view,sry
Recommend