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Deewaanapan

VASHU BHAGNANI'S ``Deewaanapan'' is a trip down memory lane in more ways than it is easy to remember! For one, it is like umpteen other love stories with the usual action, romance and music you and I have come to identify with Bollywood whenever there are either freshers or the relatively fresh-faced actors in lead roles. With Arjun Rampal and Diya Mirza — both having survived their debut debacle in ``Pyar, Ishq Aur Mohabbat'' and ``Rehna Hai Tere Dil Mein", respectively — in the lead, this film is no different from, say, a ``Dil" or a ``QSQT".

Here too the boy meets the girl. Again it is love at first sight. Again the sights are eye-catching. Again, they run to the hills for song and dance. Again there is the girl's proverbial evil father who would do anything to prevent the union. Again, there are strong-arm tactics. Again, they give space to our otherwise soft as a cake, delicious as chocolate romantic hero to flex his muscles, take off his shirt, flaunt his biceps. Again, he comes out triumphant in this good guy versus goon battle. Again, the girl respects her father. She loves him.

Again, she loves her beau more. Again, there are rain songs. Again. Again. And again.

There is nothing in``Deewaanapan''which cinegoers have not seen in the past. One can almost predict the next shot, the next move, the next frame.

``Deewaanapan''— otherwise a mainstream masala entertainer — is sunk in a morass of predictability.

However, it is a film down memory lane in another way. It marks the "coming of age'' of Vinod Khanna, no longer the debonair boy.

Here in the role of the girl's all-opposing ultra-rich father, he makes a comeback to the silver screen after some seven years. His voice is still resonant. His screen presence still admirable. But it is not his film. It is Arjun Rampal's film.

This Delhi boy is very Sunny-like in his action sequences but has soft, eloquent eyes, which means he is at ease with both girls and guns. Not a bad package.

As for Diya Mirza, well, after "RHTDM" she had to get better. She does here now. If only a shade.

But ``Deewaanapan'' suffers from both directorial lacuna — debutant Ashu Trikha — and music — Aadesh Srivastava.

The hero, who is shown as a fine basketball player, suddenly metamorphoses into an ace footballer in a key sequence. And music, which is supposed to help in this madness reaches its destination, fails to rise above the mediocrity level.

ZIYA US SALAM

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