An embodiment of disappointment

Kaanchi Hindi (U/A) ¬Director: Subhash GhaiCast: Rishi Kapoor, Mithun Chakraborty, Mishti, Kartik Aryan, Rishab Sinha, Chandan Roy Sanyal
There was a time when Subhash Ghai was the last word in entertainment. Any film he helmed was gold. 

His directing techniques were pioneering, his stories inspiring, and his films both engrossed and grossed. But that was the 1980s-90s. Cut to 2014, and Ghai is not even a ghost of his former self. As a result, barring the precious few nice visuals, songs and scenes, “Kaanchi” makes you squirm in your seat when it is not putting you to sleep. 

Shyam Kakda (a somewhat menacing Mithun Chakraborty), a corrupt politician (is there any other kind?), and his equally corrupt businessman brother JB (Rishi Kapoor, whose baddie acts are fast becoming a cliché) want to buy out the land that houses a village of retired or martyred army officers and their families in Uttarakhand. 

Standing in their way are local youngsters and sweethearts Binda (Kartik Aryan) and Kaanchi (Mishti, raw as E.coli-infested meat, oscillates from sweet to screechy in a matter of moments). 

In comes Shyam's son Sushant (Rishab Sinha), an artist who ropes in Kaanchi to show him around the hilly village for subjects of his painting, and then falls for her. As Binda and Kaanchi prepare to get hitched, a snubbed Sushant gets Binda killed, prompting Kaanchi to go after him. 

Helping her search for retribution is police sub-inspector Bagula (Chandan Roy Sanyal). 

So what's your motivation to watch Kaanchi? The story is nothing new. The visuals have been seen before. The music can be heard incessantly on radio and TV. Mishti, or whatever her real name is, looks cute when she is not marching robotically or running around, but she does nothing to lift the film. The other actors, barring Roy Sanyal, aren't worth much mention, and yes, that goes for the stalwarts too. 

The story, as mentioned, isn't much, with twists spotted a mile away. The story-telling does merit mention: Watch out for the scene where Kaanchi and Binda's dialogues form the backdrop of an impromptu photo session, or when the near-seamless editing makes for neat narration. 

Unfortunately, these alone don't make for a good film. And Ghai's brand of suspense and melodrama add so much to the cringes that instead of shedding tears, you are tearing out your hair. And let's not forget the wastage of actors like Mita Vashishth and Adil Hussain in roles that hardly suit them. 

In the end, “Kaanchi” is little but an outlet for Ghai's outdated sense of creativity. And it's a real pity!

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