Review: 'Darran Chhoo' is earnest & warm, mostly winning on account of a towering act from Karan Patel
The telly folks know actor Karan Patel as Raman Bhalla in Yeh Hai Mohabbatein but the movie folks would remember those fantastic glimpses of what the man is capable of in films like Lalbaug Parel (City of Gold) and a key role in Shootout at Wadala.
Published: Friday,Oct 13, 2023 14:26 PM GMT-06:00
The telly folks know actor Karan Patel as Raman Bhalla in the long-running show, Yeh Hai Mohabbatein but the movie folks would remember those fantastic glimpses of what the man is capable of in films like Lalbaug Parel (City of Gold) and a key role in Shootout at Wadala. Now, a decade later, Patel makes his full-fledged debut with the film, Darran Chhoo, which is co-produced by wife and actor, Ankita Bhargava Patel. Having had the chance to see the film, here's what we thought about it-
The Earnestness & Warmth
The biggest positive in Darran Chhoo is undoubtedly the earnestness and warmth it exhibits from frame one. Even though it deals with a man grappling with his existence and attempt to commit suicide, there is a consistent relatability and connect that stays. A lot of it rides on Patel entirely and that factor never disappoints.
You are invested in it and want to know what would happen to him and where does this story take him.
The Ups & Downs
Almost having flickers of how the film, Chup Chup Ke (2009) started initially, Darran Chhoo eradicates any such comparision about 20 plus minutes into the film. There is a predictability as the story continues to move forward but it's still heartwarming as you see Manav Awasthi (Patel) navigate through life after having gave up on it and is certain to die.
There are instances where you will be reminded of several other films but it never feels copied or so. The ups and downs that the film goes through are entertaining enough to keep you hooked as it also gives away messaging in social issues, dowry, and just life in general.
Karan Patel - A Reminder
Patel might have endured a long innings on TV playing a character for several years but Darran Chhoo is a reminder for all those who forgot that the man has fine acting chops. His emotions of fury, worry, tension, love, hope and compassion are all on point as he rides the entire film on his shoulders.
Even in the other underwhelming scenes, it is because of Patel, that it becomes watchable.
The Underwhelming Aspects
At the core of it, the film, owing to its obviously small scale lacks hugely when it comes to its production value. It's completely fine to have small scale films as we have seen some of the finest in that aspect but several scenes in this film are imagined and designed in a way which might have needed better technical prowess.
One of the scenes where Patel and Ashutosh Rana are standing at a railway track is so incredibly mediocre owing to how obvious it becomes that they are in a studio ahead of a green screen with the railway track as the background image. What this does is kick you out of the world the makers want you to be a part of momentarily.
Apart from that, the topsy-turvy climax, Rana getting a completely unwanted Hyderabadi accent, poor performances from many members from the ensemble cast, a bizarre and unimpactful love angle and the convenient plot developments at a rapid pace are more factors that lead you to feel underwhelmed.
In the end, Darran Chhoo is one of the sweet, earnest films that feel like a warm hug but not without its own drama and twists. It is an entertainer and does just enough to keep you invested atleast for three-quarters of the film.
Rating - *** (3/5)