"Forgiveness Overcomes the Evils of Sin"
You wouldn’t think a frothy, two and a half hour musical comedy from India could possibly be entertaining and engaging, but that’s exactly what you get with the movie BACHNA AE HASEENO.
The story begins in Switzerland, with young Raj Sharma and his three teenage traveling buddies running into four teenage girls from India. Raj and Mahi fall in love, and Raj helps a stranded Mahi get back to her parents in Zurich in time for their flight back to India. Mahi catches Raj, however, bragging to his friends about Mahi falling for him. Although Mahi intended to break her arranged marriage for Raj, Raj is ashamed and never visits Mahi in her small town back in Punjab.
Cut to several years later. Raj meets a beautiful girl named Radhika, who wants to become an actress. They make the two apartments next to one another into one, but without marriage. Raj likes his reputation as a ladies man and thinks Radhika is a career girl who would never want to marry, not in a million years.
(Spoilers follow) Raj and his friend, who work for Microsoft, get a big chance to work for Microsoft in Sydney, Australia. They are anxious to try out the Australian women. Raj, however, is surprised to find out that Radhika wants to marry him right away and move there with him. Raj is too ashamed to tell Radhika the truth, which is that he doesn’t want to marry anyone. So, he leaves her all dressed up in her wedding gown at the altar.
In Sydney, Raj gets his comeuppance. He runs into a beautiful business major from India, Gayatri, working as a taxi driver and store clerk. He falls in love with her but doesn’t listen when she says that she doesn’t like marriage. He assumes she’s just like many modern career women, who say they don’t want marriage but in reality do.
Rejected by Gayatri, Raj re-examines his life. He decides that, to set things right, he must seek true forgiveness from the two women he hurt, Mahi and Radhika.
The beginning of the first act is a bit slow, but it ends comically and, eventually, tearfully, as Raj tries humorously to get out of his affair with Radhika and when he tragically leaves Radhika at the altar. The movie then shifts into dramatic, somewhat profound territory when Raj gets his comeuppance and when he decides to seek forgiveness from the two women he wronged.
This third act is surprisingly powerful. It is made more so by a haunting refrain from the song that Raj and Gayatri sang together when Raj was most happy. There is also a fun, heartwarming number in the third act when Raj sets things right with the first woman he wronged, which brings the woman and her husband closer together.
The best part of the movie, however, is that there is a solid Christian message within the third act and the movie’s strong theme of forgiveness. Thus, in the end, repentance and forgiveness are rewarded, and the movie ends on a high positive note.
Although there are references to the Sikh religious background of Mahi’s family, BACHNA contains no overt non-Christian theology in those references or in the movie’s other parts. Of course, the Sikh God is a pantheistic one, not monotheistic, and the Sikh religion ultimately rejects basic Christianity and the Bible, but the movie makes no overt references to this false theology.
Thus, the movie’s most problematic content is in some foul language in the dialogue and in the movie’s references to Raj living together with Radhika and his other activities as a ladies man. Also, some of the musical numbers contain some suggestive, romantic dancing. Furthermore, some of the women dancers and singers have cleavage and midriffs showing.
All in all, therefore, MOVIEGUIDE® advises caution.
(BB, C, FR, LL, V, S, N, A, M) Strong moral worldview with a Christian, redemptive premise extolling repentance and forgiveness and including some positive references to God, with some references to Hindu and Sikh culture, but nothing really explicit theologically in the visuals or in the dialogue that takes away from the movie’s Christian, moral values and its references to God; six obscenities, one strong profanity and 12 light profanities; light, sometimes comic violence such as man punches another man, man threatens man with rifle, playing in the snow, and husband threatens man about staying away from his wife but man has no intention of disrupting the marriage; couple lives together, some kissing, some suggestive dancing; upper male nudity, girls in bikinis in a couple scenes, female cleavage at times and girls with midriffs and cleavage showing in a couple musical numbers; alcohol use; no smoking or drugs; and, man brags to buddies about romantic conquest (no sex involved), man leaves live-in girlfriend at the altar, and husband tells another man about his marital woes but matter is resolved positively in the end.
BACHNA AE HASEENO, a musical comedy from India, is about a ladies man who gets his comeuppance, then seeks forgiveness from two women he wronged. After rudely leaving the second woman at the altar, Raj, a young computer programmer, finds true love in Sydney, Australia with Gayatri, a beautiful business graduate. Raj doesn’t listen, however, when the girl says that she doesn’t like marriage. Rejected by Gayatri, Raj re-examines his life. He decides that, to set things right, he must seek true forgiveness from the two women he hurt.
The third act of BACHNA AE HASEENO is surprisingly powerful. It is made more so by a haunting refrain from the song that Raj and Gayatri sang together when Raj was most happy. There is also an uplifting group number when Raj sets things right with the first woman he wronged. The movie’s best part, however, is that there is a solid Christian message within the movie’s strong theme of forgiveness. In the end, therefore, forgiveness is rewarded, and the story ends on a high positive note. The movie contains, however, some foul language and sensual elements that merit caution.