Review of the 2024 film “Dukaan”: A Boring Drama starring Siddharth Singh and Garima Wahal

By Gita Samanta May13,2024
Review of the 2024 film "Dukaan": A Boring Drama starring Siddharth Singh and Garima WahalReview of the 2024 film "Dukaan": A Boring Drama starring Siddharth Singh and Garima Wahal


The film centers on a girl who volunteers to be a surrogate mother for needy couples.


In addition to Siddharth Singh, Garima Wahal has written screenplays and lyrics for a number of movies, including Animal, Bajirao Mastani, Toilet: Ek Prem Katha, Toilet: Ek Prem Katha, Toilet: Ek Prem Katha, and Kabir Singh. You can see the influence of all these flicks on their Dukaan. They borrowed their vibrant style from the three Sanjay Leela Bhansali films.


 They received wonderful ideals from Toilet and Batti Gul. They got a bold, unrepentant protagonist in Kabir Singh and Animal. Imagine how amazing things would have been if Siddharth and Garima had skillfully combined these influences to create a delicious meal. On the other hand, Siddharth and Garima come across as remarkably unoriginal filmmakers. 


They are too self-evident, too focused on emphasizing their “poetry.” They should not stop at only mentioning Radha and Krishna in the song’s lyrics. Two women are depicted, one posing next to a portrait of Radha and the other near a painting of Krishna. 


After then, a split screen is used to combine these two images, but the dividing line is not visible. Observe this as a hint. Dukaan is implying that the tension between these two ladies would ultimately vanish, giving way to an unbounded relationship.


The women are Jasmine (played by Monika Panwar) and Diya (played by Monali Thakur). When Diya’s surrogate, Jasmine, flees with the child, things between them become strained. There’s a reason Jasmine only gets attached to this one baby—not even her own son—and not other newborns. However, that reasoning is less of a solid argument and more of a cheap drama device. 


Dukaan frequently reminds us that Jasmine is still a child (the film emphasizes nearly everything). Her childishness is brought to light by the others. The same thing is evident in Panwar’s performance as well. The actress seems to have been coached to act like a pampered child by the directors. 

Review of the 2024 film "Dukaan": A Boring Drama starring Siddharth Singh and Garima Wahal
Review of the 2024 film “Dukaan”: A Boring Drama starring Siddharth Singh and Garima Wahal

In the background, we can hear Jai Jasmine, and the actor portraying the character is very self-aggrandizing. Because of this, the entire screen exudes arrogant behavior. Rhyming sentences that attempt to be dramatic but come across as overly forced attempts to wow the viewer because of drab filmmaking also reflect this attitude of complacency.


Her husband Sumer (Sikandar Kher) is mature, in contrast to Jasmine’s immaturity. What visual presentation does the film make of this fact? The scene switches to Jasmine riding a cycle, which is a kid’s vehicle, after Sumer rides a bike, which is a man’s vehicle. Sumer is nice and polite despite his maturity. He is the woman in this relationship, and she is the guy. 


Thus the moment where she acts giddy on her wedding night, like to a lustful male teenager. She walks up to Sumer and demands sex after noticing him moving his pillow to the ground. The second thing that occurs is that the wife takes off her husband’s jewelry before lying on top of him, as opposed to the husband taking off his earrings first. We later saw some husbands giving their wives lunch trays. While this role-reversal may have been entertaining on paper, there is a lot of dullness on screen that dilutes the pleasure and the goals.


An earthquake kills Sumer. A jar of red chilli breaks, alerting us to his impending death. Though drama and poetry may have been infused into these touches by someone like Bhansali, this particular moment just makes you smile. It lacks flair and is overly literal in its cinematic language. As Diya is chatting to Jasmine about her sentiments, we first see her waving a knife at her. 


Later, while discussing about her feelings, Jasmine is seen aiming a knife at Diya. In a moment from the wedding, attendees are chatting about Jasmine. Guests are chatting about Diya and her child during a welcome celebration, or birthday party, I believe. The tone of both of these scenes changes abruptly from humorous to tearful or sorrowful.


 This indicates that Dukaan suffers from tone inconsistency. It changes abruptly from being humorous to serious to funny again to serious again, and so on. Worse still, the mood stays at 100 on a scale of 1 to 10. We are subjected to so much strong information that we lose consciousness and cease reacting to what is happening on screen. Like a zombie, I emerged from the cinema.


An opening sequence can sometimes give away a film’s quality. After some time, a movie can occasionally get better. I usually watch a movie through to the very end for this reason (unless it’s as bad as, say, Ae Watan Mere Watan). 


Dukaan does, however, have a scene very close to the opening that instantly convinced me that this was going to be a bad movie. “Push kar,” a pregnant woman is told, and the scene pans to a board that displays those exact words. Raabta involved Siddharth-Garima as well. Was the terrible Dinesh Vijan movie an effect on their filmmaking as well?


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