A beefy cop besotted by a college girl goes about spouting knock knock jokes. Taking a cue from him, I’ll start with one of mine. Knock knock. Who’s there? Err, me. Me who? Me trying to hoot, that’s who I did manage to find a few laughs in ‘Main Tera Hero’, David Dhawan’s showcase created solely for his son Varun, but it was hard work. Because this is David precariously close to making my eyes glaze over, with long stretches of flatness, and forced laughter.The film may be a Telugu remake, but the template is very Dhawan, with the usual mix of buffoons and goons and mistaken identities playing ‘I spy’ in a Bangkok hotel masquerading as a home Layabout Seenu (Varun Dhawan) reaches Bengaluru with the single aim of earning a college degree. Instead, he starts chasing the pretty Sunaina (Ileana D’ Cruz), who is being menaced by a tall, burly policeman (Arunoday Singh).A rival for Seenu’s affections pops up, in the shape of the curvy, lippy Ayesha (Nargis Fakhri), and things get complicated That heroes will float around Bollywood colleges without hefting a single book is a very old story: nary a one is to be seen here, nor a classroom That they will leap from one idiocy to another is equally old. There was a time when Dhawan’s brand of idiocy was sublime. The good Govinda fronted for him, David used his superlative editing skills to keep up a rat-a-tat-pace, and we all happily rolled down the aisles. But it’s been a while since Dhawan hit his stride Main Tera Hero is not as ghastly as a few recent Dhawans have been, but only because it takes itself not at all seriously, and becomes as silly as it should be for some of the second half . The rest of it has its share of the usual unsightly and tasteless gags about women and protruding body parts and the mandatory fat guy in a wheelchair.“Purani haveli ke paas chikni chameli” is equal to “oh, this old guy with that babe”. Clap, clap. Here’s another: “ek popat ki do maina” (one parrot, two `mainas’). And a whole series of lines about ‘bajaana’ : either you can tamp down all standards and go hyuk-hyuk at this sort of thing, or you can just sit there and wonder if anything can get worse Varun Dhawan tries everything in his repertoire to be this hero: he fights, dances, and tries to be funny, topping it all up with a man-boob-mobile-nipple moment. But he is no light-on-his feet, beautifully-timed Govinda. The effort shows.The flimsily-clad Ileana D’Cruz and Nargis Fakhri do the required shimmy-shake- dumb-eye-candy-number, the former slightly better than the latter. Sharma is the dumbest and has the best-delivered line in the film. Singh looks a little lost in this company, like he wandered onto a wrong set: it would be nice to see what he does in a genuine comedy. Messers Kher, Shukla and Yadav show up, shout out their lines, and retire I will be optimistic and wait for the old nifty Dhawan to make a comeback. Or is it too close to the sell by date?
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