Star cast: Arunoday Singh, Shahana Goswami, Konkona Sen Sharma, Raima Sen, Shreyas Talpade, Boman Irani, Rajpal Yadav, Prem Chopra, Sushant Singh, Ila Arun.
Plot: Struggling writer-director Arunoday narrates four different stories to film producer Sushant. All the stories speak about how women cheat on their husbands and get away with it.
What’s Good: Performances of the actors.
What’s Bad: The monotony that sets in due to similarity of the four stories; the excruciatingly slow pace of the drama.
Verdict: Mirch is too bland to have the audience salivating, in spite of the sexual undertones.
Loo break: A couple of them because the film is repetitive.
Reliance Big Pictures’ Mirch (A) is about how women cheat on their husbands and have extra-marital affairs.
Maanav (Arunoday Singh) is a struggling filmmaker who is finding it difficult to sell his script to a producer, probably because he is unwilling to compromise on the script. His girlfriend, Ruchi (Shahana Goswami), herself a successful film editor, arranges for him to meet film producer Nitin (Sushant Singh). Not sure of the commercial prospects of Maanav’s story, Nitin asks him to think of a subject full of sex. The writer then suggests a short story from the Panchtantra, in which a woman, Maya (Raima Sen), is caught red-handed with her lover by her husband, Kashi (Rajpal Yadav), but she manages to wriggle out of it scot-free.
Nitin likes the story but since it is too short for a feature film, he asks Maanav to think up something more. Maanav comes up with three more stories in all of which the wife cheats on her husband but very cleverly doesn’t get caught for her act. The message is clear: if you have your wits about you, you can salvage the most impossible of situations.
Vinay Shukla’s script is too unpalatable for the audience. The women among the audience would feel agitated because the fairer sex has been shown to be of loose character. The menfolk may also not approve of such a story because all the four stories in the drama show wives in poor light. What’s more, the humour element in all the four stories is subdued and what seems more pronounced is that women want to sleep with guys all the time. The Indian audience is definitely not ready for such a bold subject. Had this been treated as a comedy, it may have worked slightly better but even then, the overdose of one sex (female) being targetted would still hurt the sensibilities of the audience. Although that may not be the intention of the writer, the script almost paints the entire female species as being promiscuous.
All the four stories are fresh and they may hold the audience’s interest, but the monotony of the similarity in every story would get to the audience, making the film too much to handle. Also, the script indeed looks like an assemblage of tales from the Panchtantra – something which the audience will not like. Dialogues are witty.
Arunoday Singh acts ably. Shahana Goswami is brilliantly natural. She gives her cent per cent to the role. Konkona Sen Sharma shines in both her roles – as Lavni in one of the four stories and as Anita in another story. Raima Sen is sensuous in both her roles (Maya and Manjula). Shreyas Talpade does a wonderful job and plays the suspecting husband, Manjul, with effortless ease. Boman Irani evokes laughter as Asu, the womanising Sindhi. Rajpal Yadav is good as Kashi. Prem Chopra leaves a mark as Raja Nirgun Singh. Sushant Singh plays his part with conviction. Ila Arun is lovable as Kesar. Pitobash lends fair support. In special appearances, Saurabh Shukla and Tisca Chopra are good. Mahie Gill makes her presence felt in a song-dance number.
Vinay Shukla’s direction is alright but it lacks variation as the four stories unfold one after another. Also, he seems to have all the time in the world and takes very long to come to the point, but the audience may not have that kind of patience. Monty Sharma’s music is okay; the title song is good. Lyrics (Javed Akhtar) are meaningful. The choreography of the title song (by Saroj Khan) is eye-catching. Sudhakar Reddy’s camerawork is nice. Sets (Tapan Roy and Nachiket Patwardhan) are appropriate. Editing (Sankalp Mesh- ram) is of standard.
On the whole, Mirch faces bleak prospects at the box-office and not just because of poor promotion.