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This humour is a damp squib



MAINE PYAAR KYUN KIYA : Comedy contrived.

Maine Pyaar Kyun Kiya
Genre: Comedy
Director: David Dhawan
Cast: Salman Khan, Sushmita Sen, Katrina Kaif, Sohail Khan
Storyline: Doctor lies, girlfriend cries, nurse puts on a guise
Bottomline: Liar, liar, love's on fire.

After declaring ``Maine Pyaar Kiya" years ago, a wiser, jaded Salman Khan laments, ``Maine Pyaar Kyun Kiya?" He plays Dr. Samir Malhotra, for whom mending bones and breaking hearts is all in a day's work. His strategy to keep the ladies at bay is to tell them that he is married. Sonia, a nave model, played by Khan's real-life flavour of the month Katrina Kaif, proves to be more than just timepass. Doctor Saab wants to marry her. The problem is, he has to divorce his imaginary wife. The bigger problem is that Sonia is a homebreaker with morals; she wants to meet the wife.

Dr. Mal-hottie has an even bigger problem, the annoying Pyaare (Sohail Khan) who clearly lusts after his `Sonio.'

Dr. Sammy's solution presents itself - his reliable nurse Naina — who for some reason does secretary work including ordering his lunch.

If you are one of those who believe Dhawan humour should have you slapping your knees, it's obvious that the scriptwriter and the director clearly believed this too. They seem to have been under immense pressure to get the audience howling, so the ridiculous, senseless lines are a bit too thoughtful. And the caricature characters are quite unbearable. There's Dr. Samir's mother whose characteristic trait is to slap people. So annoying; you wish someone would just shut her up with ``one tight slap." And then there is the jelly-legged Kargil veteran who harbours feelings for nurse Naina (Sushmita Sen).

Salman Khan's antics do earn a couple of laughs though. He loses the hangdog, soulful expression for a bit and comes up with philosophy like ``My wife is like a tube of toothpaste. Once you squeeze it out, you cannot get it back."

As for Katrina, she does pretty well. If you have watched ``Boom" where she played a similar role - a nave model, you'll be bracing yourself for the ordeal. But as her voice sounds dubbed by someone else, you realise that minus the sound, she manages reasonably well.

Sohail Khan does this whole ape act with lots of face contortions and slapstick mannerisms. Personally, it isn't amusing but he did get a few laughs in the cinema hall.

SUSAN MUTHALALY

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