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Pal Pal Dil Ke Paas review: An outdated concept wherein Karan Deol struggles to act

Release Date: 20 Sep 2019 / Rated: U/A / 02hr 33min

Cinestaan Rating

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Keyur Seta

The launch vehicle for Sunny Deol's son only has picturesque visuals to offer. 

The first half of actor-director Sunny Deol’s Pal Pal Dil Ke Paas (2019) takes place in Shimla and its neighbouring areas. The film is a launch pad for his son Karan Deol and actress Sahher Bambba. For some reason, their onscreen characters are also known as Karan and Saher. Why look for other names when their real names are so filmi

Karan lives with the pain of losing his parents in an avalanche when he was a child. He grows up and owns a place where tourists can stay and go for trekking and other adventure sports. He is happy with his simple life except some bouts of sadness on his parents’ untimely deaths. 

Karan’s life takes a turn when Saher lands up at his trekking camp. She is a vlogger [video blogger] working for a content agency, and is known for giving mostly negative reviews of places she reviews. Saher was all set to do the same when she begins trekking but develops a change of heart by the time her trip ends as she and Karan start liking each other. 

The visuals of Shimla and its neighbouring hills are breathtaking in almost every frame, be it the tall snow peaks or the gently flowing river. What makes the visuals more appealing are the realistic, and at times, exciting scenes of trekking and mountain climbing involving Karan and Saher’s characters.

The reason for stressing this point is that beyond this, nothing happens in the first half in terms of story development except that the two leads start liking each other. Of course, these moments would have been better without the constant screams of Bambba’s character. But then, she turns out to be a much better performer than her co-star, the newest star kid in town. 

Karan Deol has an impressive physique needed to be a mainstream hero in commercial films. But his acting skills in terms of expressions and dialogue delivery are poor to say the least. He needs massive improvement. 

Akash Ahuja is another newcomer in the film. Although he is completely believable as an out-and-out bad guy, he overacts on few occasions. If only he could have adopted more subtlety by transferring few expressions to Karan, life would have been better for the viewers. 

The acts of senior cast like Sachin Khedekar, Meghna Malik, Simone Singh and the actress who plays Bambba’s grandmother fall in the positive zone. 

However, even if the junior Deol had acted convincingly, it wouldn’t have helped the film much. If the first half was lazy [minus the visuals], the narrative becomes messy and silly post-interval. 

A conflict element is obvious in films of such formats. One expected it to be born out from the rich girl and not-so-rich guy angle. But instead it turns out to be something much lamer than that narrated through a screenplay that’s all over the place with glaring loopholes. 

Picture this, the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) of a posh Delhi hospital is a place where one is allowed to create melodrama, watch disturbing news on TV and (best of all) barge in with a goon while trying to strangle him. We all want the hospital staff to be co-operative, but definitely not to this extent. 

Pal Pal Dil Ke Paas ends up treading on those numerous Sunny Deol films where he takes matters in his own hands to fight the wrongdoers. Karan Deol is better in fight sequences in these portions but it seems he is aping his father. Even the scene where a group of men hold him from behind is right out of his father’s iconic moment from Rajkumar Santoshi’s Ghayal (1990). 

All in all, through Pal Pal Dil Ke Paas, Sunny Deol eventually reminds you of his last directorial venture Ghayal Once Again (2016), where he tarnished his own classic Ghayal. 


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