Cheeni Kum (2007) Poster

(2007)

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8/10
Fresh grownup romantic comedy
VirginiaK_NYC26 May 2007
At the point in this romantic comedy where they are definitely getting interested in each other, Amitabh Bachchan and Tabu are sitting on a bench in a park in London, and she tells him animatedly to run to a tree across a meadow and touch it and run back. It's the kind of thing you tell a little boy to do -- a brilliant touch that captures so much of what's good about the movie: their fresh dynamic, her self-possessedness, his readiness, if reluctant, to step out of a somewhat ossified "grownup" character. I think you'd be sorry if you missed this, supposing you had a way of finding out what you'd missed.

I don't think light romantic comedy is easy to do - at all - and this movie does it very well -- there's not a sloppy or wince-inducing moment . Moreover there's the pleasure of a love story between grownup characters, an especially rare pleasure. Tabu and AB are really good together - it's nice to see them both matched in terms of their size, for one thing, and Tabu emanates the kind of intelligent, self-confident, unsentimental, serious young woman who often is happiest with an older man -- like Jo in Little Women.

Story takes place in both London and Delhi, which is fun. As everyone who's seen the previews knows, AB is an irritable and perfectionistic chef of 64 who owns a very successful restaurant, realistically filmed and with a pleasing cast of comic minor characters. He meets Tabu, a 34 year old visitor from India, via a character-establishing quarrel when she sends back a dish. And eventually there's her father in Delhi to deal with.

AB lives with his 90-year-old mother (Zora Seghal, she's the grandmother in most movies) and one of the great things about the movie is their totally mutually insulting relationship -- she is a horrible cook and he is very mean and funny about it; she watches wrestling and Sex and the City or something on TV all day and nags him to go to a gym. This is delightful in an Indian movie, as relief from the standard Mataji of the brimming-over compassionate gaze -- and we also unexpectedly see his deep reliance on her, and her availability, when something very distressing happens to him.

Alongside the AB-Tabu story is the story of AB's relationship with a little girl next door who has leukemia. She gives him advice and he promises her the "adult dvds" she wants to watch. And the scene where he goes into the video store and demands "adult dvds that are suitable for small children" is the kind of thing this movie excels at.

The presence in the story of people of all ages, from little girl to 90-year-old Mother, as well as Tabu's father who is younger than AB and thinks of himself as elderly (and carries on to AB about how AB is so-lucky to have been "old enough to see Gandhi-ji") -- all of them written as anti-stereotypes -- makes a very nice philsophical background score about life, love, and mortality.

I like the actual music a lot too - no "singing" by characters, but some nice scored passages that won't leave you, if Bollywood is your home, feeling exiled.
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8/10
Awesome, arrogantly sarcastic romantic comedy
oinam28 May 2007
An awesome movie; Amitabh and Tabu were just fantastic. I laughed almost throughout the movie and I loved the flawlessly spiced dialogue between Amitabh and Tabu. Cheeni Kum is about the unadulterated but sweetened love-story of a 64 year old man (I'm pretty sure Amitabh Bachchan is at that age right now in his real life) and a 34 year old woman.

An arrogantly sarcastic Buddhadev Gupta (Amitabh Bachchan), who is still a bachelor at 64 meets a 34 years old spinster, simple and sweet Nina Verma (Tabu) at his restaurant, one of London's top authentic Indian Restaurant. The similarities in their difference brings them together which culminated into a romance of a funnier genre.

There were many ingredients of spices, little more than a typical romantic Hindi Movie; besides Amitabh and Tabu, the sizzler of curly straight dialogue from the 9 year old Sexy (Swini Khara) is refreshing to make you laugh all along. The kiddish delight of the 58 year old Omprakash Verma's (Paresh Rawal) Gandhism as Nina's father was the ultimate dessert to the main course romance. Of course, Amitabh's 85 year old mother (Zohra Sehgal) who loves TV shows with muscle man and "Sex and the City" added enough flavor to make you reach out for the side dish that she flaunts.
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10/10
Outstanding, intelligent romantic comedy
anagpal24 May 2007
This movie is a novelty for India, a movie comprising mostly of intelligent, dialogue based humour rather than on situations (like Khosla ka Ghosla) or slapstick (most of the other Hindi movies that pretend to be comedies). Amitabh Bachchan is a crabby 64 year old chef / owner of an Indian restaurant in London. The first half depicts the growing relationship between himself and Tabu, a 34 year old woman from Delhi in London on a holiday. The second half primarily depicts Tabu's 58 year old father, Paresh Rawal's viewpoint on the relationship. There – that's it as far as the story goes…nothing more, nothing less… The true brilliance of the movie lies in the life / spark infused in even the simplest of situations or the simplest of characters. Whether it's the interaction amongst the chef's in the restaurant, the waiter hilariously nicknamed Colgate because of his protruding teeth and the jokes at their expense ('Iske Liye Dimaag Ki Zaroorat Hai, Daant Ki Nahin', he is gently admonished on one occasion), the Sardarji pharmacist and Amitabh's interactions with him, Amitabh's mom's fascination with the gym in the face of her sons obvious reluctance to go anywhere near it, his acerbic comments on his mom's cooking ('yeh Tihar Jail Waali Dal ?'), Paresh Rawal's love of cricket and Gandhism. I can go on and on. I was in near-hysterical splits on no less than 10 occasions. I'm still laughing as I remember some of the jokes….

And I haven't even mentioned Amitabh and Tabu – their running joke around the umbrella, the ruthless way she teases him the first time he tries to ask her out, their almost every conversation was beautifully constructed. The movie also captures amazingly well the highs and lows of falling in love. Will she come or wont she ? Will she say yes ? The mood swings, the heartache and the sheer exhilaration and joy when its all OK, when you're with your newfound love.

I think one of the casting coup's of the movie was Tabu. I watched this movie with a school friend of mine (Prashant) and we discussed her at length after the movie. The parts of the conversation I can print here involved her sheer beauty, her classic features (high cheekbones, eyes) and her subtleness…her understated yet enigmatic presence. She brings reality and a certain mystique to her character, makes acting seem so easy. I don't think there is another Bollywood actress who could have done justice to her role.

However, this doesn't detract in any way from any of the other performances in the movie. Everyone was excellent – from Amitabh to Paresh Rawal to each chef / waiter in the restaurant, Amitabh's neighbour and his daughter (a nice sub-plot here and at last we get a real child who talks like today's kids actually do, unlike the saccharine mumblings of the girl in TaraRumPum). The music, with the title song playing constantly in the background, the settings (even Qutab Minar looks beautiful in the movie), everything, like spices, enhance the brilliance of the dialogue.

Take a bow, Mr Balki (an ad maker and first time director). The entire audience gave a standing ovation when the movie ended. Is movie main kuch bhi kum nahin tha !
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10/10
Light hearted Comedy with a dash of reality
kunalkaran29 May 2007
I think this is truly a marvelous film. Very well scripted, and even more wonderfully enacted. Amitabh is truly the King of Hindi movies, you just have to watch him in those suits and Tabu has come of age as a seasoned actress, Paresh Rawal is OK.

An unusual story depicted with very realistic situations and laced with light-hearted humour. Oh the movie has some really witty dialogues too.

The cutest bits are the scenes between Amitabh and Zohra Sehgal (who plays his mom in the movie). Another highlight is the role played by the child actor aptly named sexy, who is very witty and worldly wise.

I think the bottom line of the movie is that girls mature faster than men do and thus age should really not be a bar when one looks for a life-partner.

After a long time,(for Hindi movie-goers) one gets to see a movie and say Ya! that was a NICE movie. And definitely worth a second watch.
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Delicious platter - DDLJ ver 64
AvinashPatalay3 June 2007
I am sure all of you would have got a fair idea about the movie by now. And also judged the strengths and weaknesses as well.

I am not too sure if Cheeni Kum is the first Bollywood movie which fits into this genre of "Sarcastic Comedy", but definitely there could be many more to follow. With the ad-man at the helm of affairs, its no wonder that every line of the movie seems to have been written by a copywriter.

Amitabh and Tabu share a great chemistry and for once you wonder if you have been focusing on Tabu's performance than Big B. Having said that Big B makes you wonder how can he still manage to look sexy at 64. Zohra Sehgal - every time she comes on the screen, you are ready for the next dose. Fanstastic performance indeed and the same for the little girl "Sexy" who gets one of the best lines in the movie. Paresh Rawal - after a long-long time you wonder how did he go wrong this time. Clearly there is big lacunae, wonder if its the script that is to be blamed. Rest of the star-cast do a perfect cog in the wheel.

Be it sunny and rainy side of London or the cool breeze of New Delhi - P C Sriram managed to capture all the seasons equal ease. Editing by Chandan Arora manages to keep the story crisp. Ilayaraja's music stays with you after the movie as well.

Having been to cinema with least expectations, I walked out of the hall with a single thought "Why can't Johar's & Chopra's make a delicacy like this?". On a parting note, Cheeni Kum seemed to have a a few similarities with DDLJ - different sensibilities though.
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8/10
Cheeni Kum is no bitter pill
padmanabhan1927 May 2007
Rarely do Bollywood movies live up to their hype. This one comes very close.

Amitabh Bachchan owns Spice6, the best Indian restaurant in London. To him, being a chef is more than a profession. It is an art, in fact, the greatest art of all. He personally ensures every dish that leaves his kitchen is up to his exacting standards. His employees respect him, but his angered outbursts send shivers down their spine. It is during one such outburst that he sees a dish, Hyderabadi Zafrani Pulao no less, returned by a customer (Tabu) because it's too sweet (and hence the recommendation to reduce sugar or Cheeni Kum). Enraged, he walks up to the table, and challenges Tabu to make it any better. She leaves without uttering a word, but brings in some Hyderabadi Zafrani Pulao the next day that even Amitabh finds delicious. He now owes her an apology, thus setting into motion a series of events that lead to attraction between the two, and finally love.

Although the age gap between Amitabh and Tabu is there to see, it is totally downplayed and doesn't even come into focus until later in the second half. Their exchanges are loaded with witty repartees and sarcastic remarks that leave the audience in splits. The tight script and screenplay make sure the movie progresses at a good pace although it was slow at times for my liking. I think the director fell for the Bollywood norm of making 2½ hour movies. Also, the movie loses its grip toward the end. The scenes are predictable and the melodrama avoidable. These are minor indiscretions of a first-time director, and in no way, reduce the overall appeal. If you ask me, it is certainly worth a second watch.

Amitabh is calm and composed. The role doesn't challenge him much, but he plays it with conviction. Tabu is brilliant. The last time I saw her was in Fanaa, and firmly believed she's insane. Not only did she pick the right movie here, she's ensured her character isn't sidelined. In fact, in several scenes, her character comes out on top of Amitabh's, and is credible thanks to her acting abilities. Zohra Sehgal, as Amitabh's mom, is on a roll. Swini Khara as Sexy, Amitabh's 7-year old neighbor is cute, and gets to deliver a few punch lines too. Paresh Rawal as Tabu's father is disappointing. His character is too clichéd and completely out of sync with the movie.

In sum, Cheeni Kum is no bitter pill. I rate it 4/5.
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5/10
Bachchan-Tabu Chemistry
m_shankar2027 May 2007
Warning: Spoilers
Amitabh Bachchan is living the time of his life. At 65, he is getting author backed roles. He is playing as diverse characters as possible. He is getting to act against the finest actors and biggest starts of the current generation. What makes all this possible is he never disappoints. He is getting more effortless an actor by the day.

Cheeni Kum is a small film targeted at the multiplex audience. It hits bang on target. The punch lines evoked laughs and the more serious moments did not make people go out and get popcorn. Amitabh is a chef in an Indian restaurant in London. Tabu comes in one day as a customer and before they know, the 64 year old is in love with the 34 year old. Now the task in hand is to convince Tabu's father, played by Paresh Rawal, to accept a man 6 years older than him as his son-in-law. Does he? Find out for yourself.

Amitabh and Tabu display spot-on chemistry. She make hers falling in love with a man almost double her age believable. Fresh from her success in The Namesake, we realize why we want to see her more regularly on the screen - she can be anything she wants; one of the finest actors around. The little girl suffering from cancer angle was a bit predictable, but I guess inevitable at the same time. Except for that, the author would not have been able to show the softer side of Amitabh's character.

The director, Balki, sticks to the basics and hence comes out good. Camera work is very intelligent. It does not, even in for a single shot, makes the film look bigger than it intends to be. Landmarks of London and New Delhi are captured with a neighborhood feel. This adds to the feeling that it is a story of people around us.

All in all, a good entertainer.
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10/10
the perfect recipe
vilsy12325 June 2007
this is my first review on IMDb.

this is not a regular love story..... don't judge by what critics say and go ahead and watch the movie.... power packed performance from amitabh bachchan and tabu..

Buddha(amitabh) is the owner of spice6 restaurant which is the best in and around London.... fun begins when tabu returns the "hyderabadi jaffarani biryani" for it was too sweet.... and u will not stop laughing then on.... go and enjoy the movie.

kudos to r.balki for making an excellent movie and taking bollywood to newer heights.. music by illayaraja is soothing and so is shreya ghoshal's voice..
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7/10
Adult romance drama with nice comedic touches - shabbash!
maxqnzs4227 July 2007
I watched this immediately after jhoom barabar jhoom, and was very glad I did. JBJ was an AWFUL pile of bakvaas, and Amitabh's appearances in that movie were pointless and embarrassing (why was he trying to look like Stevie Ray Vaughan?) Cheeni kum was a very good movie. A little slower than it could have been, and maybe Amitabh's character was a little bit TOO "cheeni kum", but overall it was an intelligent and well put together film. There were several things not done as well as they could have been, including the shameful underutilization of Paresh Rawal, but overall this was a good try. It was certainly one of Amitabh's better roles of the last couple of years. Zohra was outstanding as was Swini Kehra, and the film examined the central issue well. Almost as well as the outstanding Dil Chahta Hai. After KJo cr*p like KANK, SLB's bloated rubbish (Black, Devdas) and the David Dhawan conveyor belt of pathetically unfunny "comedies", films like Cheeni Kum restore my faith in Hindi cinema. The central jodi was very plausible, and Tabu's character gave as good as she got, except for the scene at the restaurant with the fish (where her capitulation seemed out of character). I just wish that was at least one Cheeni Kum for every Jhoom Barabar Jhoom. Plus I want to see more of Zohra before she leaves us, and more of the excellent Swini.
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9/10
Fantastic !!!
anuragsaluja-127 May 2007
Excellent Movie !!!

Mr. Bachchan has done it again and every time he is doing something new, he is adding a new feather to his cap. Tabbu, you are undiputably the best actress available today :-)

Let's start with the positives of the movie. First, This is no Nishabd, this is not over-hyped movie, this is not a "dancing around the tree" romantic movie, this is actually a mature and on the top of that it is packed with powerful performances. Second, Movie is a no frills movie, simple set-up, easy to relate with characters, no wedding dresses and excellent locations required and yet creating a charisma on screen. Third, movie does not lose it's pace through-out...fair work to keep the aurdience engaged for 2 and half odd hrs. Forth, movie clicks with almost all age groups, i found the whole audience laughing thru' the movie including kids... Fifth, superb and powerful performances and that too in a non-bollywood manner. This movie is another step forward towards a much more mature cinema where we are giving a new dimension to our on screen creativity.

Movie is not flawless though...and that's where i have deducted 1 point. Paresh Rawal could have been used in much more effective manner. May be the director didn't want it to become another formula comedy and hence depicted Paresh rawal in a different way.

In All - - -Tabbu and Big B prove out to be THE BEST combo :-) even better than Big B and Rekha ;-) hehehehe
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9/10
Excellent Movie
swami-gopalan28 May 2007
After a long time, we see one more movie that surpasses all expectations. One of the coolest romantic comedies made. Every dialogue in the movie is filled with sarcasm. And the story has been handled with utmost maturity. Not a dull moment at all in the movie. Each character is etched out fantastically. Amitabh,Tabu,Paresh rawal have all acted great in this movie. I was laughing all through the movie. I had no expectations from this movie, but turned out to be one of the finest movies made so far in bollywood. Initially was skeptical that it might be too melodramatic, but it was surprisingly refreshing movies. Great direction, nice songs and good story. After Munna bhai, one of a cool movies made. A Must watch movie. GO AND WATCH IT.
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10/10
Its an Wonderful Romance Movie (Wont give Comedy Tag- sorry)
kumar_ramany14 July 2007
Warning: Spoilers
First hats off to Balki. Such an wonderful concept brought into reality. This do happen in real life, but the way Amitabh has been pictured is simply awesome. Amitabh has done his role as a 64 year old, cranky, egoistic male part. And another best think the whole movie has completely built up on two thinks, the intelligent humuroustic dialogue by the characters and acting. The only place where i cringed was the last seen where Amitabh did that cock-run after hearing sexy's death. But again, if you don't give that thing in a Indian Movie then its not an Indian movie right. So that is forgiven. I will at any point of time an entertainer all the way to end of movie. But Sexy, i don't want to mention her here, because i don't know how to put down my appreciation, she did exactly the way these days kids talk to elders, fearless, more matured (sometime in badataste) but in totality i think she did a fantastic job.
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Too Little Sugar
Chrysanthepop10 August 2008
The title exactly sums sums up the film. Yes, it is not too sugarcoated but it has does not have much taste either. While the movie is appealing and a delight to watch in the first half and slowly seems to change track in the second half, things get a little too messy in the last third after Buddha goes to India to meet Neena's father. The first half works as a romantic comedy where Balki introduces the love story of the two interesting protagonists, Buddha (Amitabh Bachchan) and Neena (Tabu) There are some very funny feel good scenes. The comedy between Amitabh and Tabu works well and Zohra Sehgal is absolutely hilarious. Once Buddha lands in India things go haywire. Was the screenwriter suffering from writer's block and pressured to meet a deadline? Did he not find any other way to get Neena's father to accept the proposal or for Buddha to finally manage to convince Mr. Verma without showing all that forced melodrama? Tabu is charming and has amazing screen presence but her character isn't exactly well-written as a result of which her performance suffers. In the last third she is barely given importance. This is among her weakest performances but in all fairness to her, the script does not give her enough scope to make the character more appealing. Amitabh Bachchan returns to his angry man mode (again) and he severely hams at many scenes. Zohra Sehgal is a delight to watch and Swini Khara is wooden (her voice sounds a little monotonous but her non-verbal expressions are good at times) Why did the writer choose to give a little girl a nickname like 'Sexy' (forced humour?)?. Paresh Rawal gives a forgettable performance. In addition to that, there are some very passable songs (but nothing great) and the locations are nice to look at. Anyway, 'Cheeni Kum' mainly suffers because of bad writing and poor direction. I wouldn't want to watch it again.
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10/10
Extraordinary
irish_milkgirl4 June 2007
The night I saw this film I had a rather interesting project on my hands. I've been a fan of Bollywood films for a good few years now, but none of my girlfriends had ever seen one. And they were quite reluctant about seeing one now ("but it's not in English" "can you read subtitles and watch the movie at the same time?" "is it true that when they're about to kiss they all burst into song and dance?"). But a good excuse (we were celebrating my birthday and thus, my choice of film) and they came along. And they all came out of the theater enthusiastically discussing their introduction to Bollywood.

And what an introduction it was too. I watch in awe at every movie Amitabh stars in these days with such admiration and respect for such a fine man and gifted artist, a true jewel in the crown of India. Apurv Nagpal pretty much sums up the greatest of this film in his review, I had tears coming down my face for the first half of the film, and the one on one scenes between Amitabh and Tabu touched my heart like nothing else has done before. True love at its most passionate.

For those outside India, I found this film to be a cross between Bollywood and your typical pommy Hugh Grant romantic comedy - but don't let that put you off. Believe me, if my "Pirates of the Caribbean"-Hollywood-mega-blockbuster friends enjoyed their first taste of foreign films and Bollywood, you'll certainly love this. 11 stars out of 10!
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9/10
Intelligent Script
ek-maneesha20 December 2008
To begin with I never liked the too old guy and young girl concept movies, as it creeped me out. But Cheeni Kum is not about that, its amazing how the Creator has escaped the needless details of such relationship without missing the important point, that Love is Blind!!

Well for me this movie qualifies for one reason and that is the dialogs of the movie. The conversations between Tabu and Amitabh are just so catchy and one can relate to both talking each other's out! The chemistry between the two characters makes u totally forget their age. I liked the movie and its a must watch for people who are in love with something which others might not approve of. I recommend it to the people who are trying to define love also as it is an eye opener. The great humor doesn't hurt too! So go ahead and enjoy!
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9/10
Truly an under-rated modern classic. For sure
khuram2 September 2007
Well this is the first time i am writing a comment here on IMDb for a movie title. Thats how much this film impressed me.

I saw the trailers a few months ago, and as with most of the modern Bollywood offerings when you have flashy item numbers, and the stellar star cast ensemble, you tend to want rush to the box office and be done with your craving. Only to learn disappointment that the film didn't meet any of your expectations. all the best bits of the movie were in the trailer itself, and the item numbers you could watch later on you tube.

Well, Cheeni Kum, was no such thing. No fancy songs, no fancy beauties with the sex appeal, and an interesting premise that actually followed through right to the very end.

I had been putting off watching this film due to the poor reviews, and after watching this film, i cant believe how much off the mark these critics can be. Nothing is further from the truth.

The subject matter, was handled delicately, but more importantly with sensitivity, and above anything with maturity and intelligence. Something so rare in India, except from the likes of Sanjay Leela Bhansali or Karan Johar.

Of course this film doesn't appeal to all, and would be better appreciate by the NRIs, but what a class act indeed. Tabu was superb, and Amitabh was absolutely outstanding.

This film isn't just about the possible romance between a 64 year old and 34 year old. It was so much more. How to look on the brighter side of life, but not only that, but how to take the best from our teachings old, and not to cling on traditions that benefit no one, but the traditions themselves.

I was constantly waiting to be disappointed throughout the film, as thats what most flicks do. At some point the cracks in the script and screenplay start to appear with contrived performances and unfolding of story's. This didn't happen here, and i am thoroughly impressed.

Heartily recommended.
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8/10
A great movie to watch!
s-sanjeev12 August 2007
I recommend readers to watch this movie (if they have not seen already). It is a great movie indeed, very funny dialog and some great acting by Mr Bachchan, Tabu & Paresh R.

This is a kind of movie u can ask your friends to watch, who r not used to Indian movies (foreigners, or those who think Indian movies r not good enough).

A great work by the director, Mr Balki and the entire team. I hope u will find it more interesting to watch this movie than reading my comment.

Happy watching...;-)
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9/10
Thoroughly Entertaining! Recommended
rahuldatta15 June 2007
CHEENI KUM is a rare recent film which defies stereotypes and entertains you thoroughly from start to finish .It has excellent performances by an eminent cast and brilliant soundtrack by the maestro Illaiyaraja . Dialogues are one of the "stars" of this film. Wit and humor seen here has a certain freshness about it. Also , except some moments in the second half , where you feel there is a slackness in the pace and proceedings , you don't feel like going out of the auditorium even during songs. R.Balki , an adman , creative director of LOWE India , who has made some memorable ads in his career , has made a brilliant debut.Way to go Balki! And all those cine fans out there, go watch it. You won't be disappointed
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7/10
big b proves he's sexy at 64
simplysavz1 June 2007
aaah! after a long time, here's a romance i could finally relate to. tabu and amitabh capture the long lost magic of romance that follows no reason or rhyme or logic or time, BANG ON! when you watch them both on screen, you realize how much a seasoned actor can do to a role. special mention to tabu, for playing her role at the right tempo - at just the right pace.

balki handles the film with finesse, in the first half. the lines are witty, delivered straight-facedly by amitabh, in what could be one of his most romantic roles. zohra sehgal is sooooo sweet, you wish she was your mom.paresh rawal is strictly okay.

watch this film without having too many expectations. its a nice, frothy romantic comedy and if you keep that in mind, you won't be disappointed. i give it a double thumbs-up
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7/10
It's never too late to love !
Queen_of_pentacles9 June 2007
Warning: Spoilers
The setting is a restaurant in London, with Amitabh at the helm of the affairs , and his team of assistant chefs in tow , outwardly extra obedient, like students with a disciplinarian teacher ; once he turns his back, they come out with all sorts of jokes and takes, on their strict boss too ! Every thing seems to be going on smoothly, until one fine evening , when Tabu, as Neena arrives, for some real culinary delights in his restaurant, recommended by her friend Shalini. When the Pulav is returned, Amitabh's ego is hurt, and he gives her a piece of his mind. Then starts the string of encounters, when this couple, with a vast age difference, begin meeting each other, and actually enjoying each other's company. There are other 2 females in Amitabh's life, his perky mother, though quite old, and a young girl of about 10, who is a cancer patient. As we think that there is no problem in their getting united, there comes Tabu's daddy, a believer of Gandhiji's philosophy ,and conversely, fond of cricket. later we know, why this Gandhiji's reference . He is extremely adamant about his daughter getting married with this gentleman from London, who is even older than him by a few years. To protest, he adopts Gandhian Satyagrahi fasting till death. How Buddha , that is Amitabh finally succeeds in getting him to accept the proposal, no matter even if grudgingly , is appropriate to watch on the screen. Musiacal score is too good, as it is from Illayiraja , Amitabh is better, and at ease here, compared to Nishabd, Tabu fits the bill, and Paresh is sharp tongued and disarming as usual. Sehgal is amazing, even at this age, and much better than in her roles in those British-Indian artificial movies , or t.v. shows. The small girl is o.k., but the nick name Sexy, and some of the dialogs given to her, could have been rewritten, as they sound quite odd mostly, considering her age, and the ailment. Was her character thought necessary to give a human touch to the character of Buddha, who is otherwise an outspoken, and some what arrogant individual ? There are some clever hints at both these characters devoid of sexual life due their loneliness, and Amitabh going to his chemist's shop, and asking for condoms, is funny, when the Sardarji owner calls him Chacha ! Tabu is also shown to openly hint at their possible sexual proximity, when she says, Itne bhukhe ho kya ? and Aage kuch kar sakte ho ki nahin ? These lines in her mouth seem quite brash, at the same time indicate her own deprivation of sexual part in her life. It's that team of cooks in the kitchen, who have really acted out their parts in a very lively way. Clearly, Amitabh has shown his emotional swings from a rational human being, to the one, who even tries in his desperation, to touch that iron pillar,for his wish fulfillment, and lo, it actually works for him. Some how, one does feel, that using Gandhiji's fasting technique, and making a sort of farcical situation out of it, by showing crowd gathered near the gates, father trowing the tea cups, and Tabu just sitting and holding his hands, yet saying that if he wants to fast unto death, that's his choice, is not very convincing, and marrs the otherwise hilarious and a breezy comedy. But why does Amitabh has to declare that he wants to marry his daughter, when both of them are in the loo ? his normal courage and presence of mind is shown dwindling with this type of a father, perhaps ? In the end, while at the dinner table with his son -in-law, and newly acquired status, this so-called Gandhivadi, cheers up at the prospect of seeing a cricket match, and that's what his real love in life actually ! Why couldn't they think of it earlier, while poor fellow, so fond of chicken, is unnecessarily made to fast ? By the way, it's not required for the fasting fellows, to throw temper tantrums, or look ridiculous, as this one looks, actually terrible, they could look more serene, and composed, and break their fast peacefully, with a pitcher of sweet lime juice, as the practice goes in India ! Perhaps Tabu and Amitabh could have also undertaken counter fasts, but then we don't know who would yield in the end ! i have given 7 , as i felt they spoiled the atmosphere and the genre of a very different experience, by showing Buddha quite confused, baffled and even alleging Neena, when he overhears calling it her bad luck. whereas, Tabu is shown taking things rather coolly, than putting her foot down, or finding some way out of the dilemma . The police station scene is unnecessary as such . Worth watching at least once, for a different kind of a movie, than the usual, loud, Bollywood fare, which goes under the name of a comedy, or drama, and yes, specially for Amitabh, who has made justice to the main character , by his handling of it , with underplay and a beautiful sense of timing . So cheer up, all of you who have given it up due to the age factor, as Amitabh says, how does it matter ? IMDb recommends, Girl in the Cafe, another movie, if you like this one, but don't think in advance, that they got the idea from that one, as i have also not seen that English one as yet !
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9/10
Cheeni Kum is Fine Film with Great performances
amolpitkar28 May 2007
Cheeni Kum is a fine film. Amitabh & Tabu are brilliant! It has Great & witty dialogs. Big B is presented the way he always should be. Balki has shown a great promise in his directorial debut. The supporting cast & the music elevates the film to new level. A must watch for every intelligent moviegoer.

I loved all the scenes where Big B & Tabu are together. The great chemistry between the 2 leads is amazing and evokes romance in the viewers. Big B looks dashing at the age of 64 & Tabu just fits like a glove.

This one will be in my collection.

Go watch Cheeni Kum, and get mesmerized by Big B & Tabu.
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9/10
Really good movie. Tabbu has done great work
purohitkanchan19 September 2018
Best movie ever and very entertaining. I just loved the concept
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8/10
Cheeni Kum Review
AnishMisra18 October 2017
Cheeni Kum is a film written and directed by R. Balki. I had this film in the back-burner for quite some time. So since I had to see something light, I decided to pick up this film. And I am much satisfied with this film.

Plot; Buddhadev, a 64 year old Chef in London falls in love with 34 year old, Neena Verma.

Story and direction: This is what I would call a love story with a twist. And I would say, although I had my doubts, but I was highly entertained by this twist. The film has quite the beautiful setting. The character of Buddha is quite a one. We see various shades of him which I liked a lot. And the characters we have surrounded around Buddha was also good. A special mention to Colgate and the way he pronounced 'Zafrani Pulao'. Then we have a mother who nags Buddha a lot and his blood cancer suffering neighbor, who is called 'Sexy' (we never get her real name in the entire film, quite an interesting thing). Then we are introduced to Neena which was a well shaped up character. Then we have Neena's father (who also doesn't have a name), which was an OK kind of character to me. Balki did a lot of hard-work on the characterization which is clearly visible in the film. I was hooked to the film in its entire duration which was due to the story. And Balki deserves a lot of credit for that. The structure of the film has been replicated in Ki and Ka (which was quite a poor film, considering Balki's caliber). But the main fault I would say for this film, that if you take off the characters there is nothing unique in the film.

Music: Ilaiyaraaja scores the film. Now considering the talent of this maestro, I would say that he did a pretty average job here. Most of the tunes have been of his previous ventures. The title track is OK but not a standout. That also can be said for the other songs in the film too.

Performances: Assembling some of the powerhouses of Bollywood, is a thing that highly paid off in this film. Amitabh Bachchan was fantabulous as Buddha. He played all the different shades of his character with ease. He always reminds me why he is considered a legend. Tabu was also great in her role of Neena. Paresh Rawal was also good as Neena's Gandhian father. Zohra Sehgal proved that age is just a number. Same goes for Swini Khara who delivered a fine performance.

Favorite Scene: It would be the scene just before the ending of the film where Buddha goes to a pole near Qutab Minar to fulfill one of his wishes and his mother helps him in doing so. After fulfilling a wish something quite bad happens and he goes again to the pole, but in vain. Amitabh Bachchan displayed varied emotions in this scene and the switch was fantastic.

Verdict: Although not the best film of Amitabh Bachchan, I would say it's a decent watch. I was highly entertained throughout the film.

I am going with an 8/10.
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7/10
Long live Zohra Aapa ! An icon of Zinda-Dili !
jmathur_swayamprabha14 July 2014
Zohra Sehgal has passed away. She truly deserved to live for more than a century. The great artist who was an icon of vivaciousness. She left for her heavenly abode on 10.07.2014 after spending 102 years on this planet with each one of them brightening with her never-say-die spirit. The really bold lady who was much ahead of her time and a true symbol of woman-lib was a multi-talented artist. She was a stout pillar of Indian theatre, a dancer-cum-choreographer-cum dance teacher par excellence, a great cine-actress and what not! She lived her life on her own terms and always maintained the true spirit of living a meaningful and energetic life - 'Never say die'. Interestingly, she had acted in a TV series titled as 'Never Say Die' only which was a comedy and was telecast on a channel in U.K. during the late eighties.

Her first movie as an actress was Dharti Ke Laal(1946) by Khwaaja Ahmed Abbaas whereas her last movie as an actress was Saawariya(2007) by Sanjay Leela Bhansaali. While paying my tribute to this brave woman born in a Muslim family a century ago who went ahead to live a life full of vigor and vivacity, drawing respect from all the quarters of the society, I am reviewing a movie which was one of her final movies. It's Cheeni Kum(2007).

Cheeni Kum(less sugar) is a comedy whose story is true to the spirit of Zohra Aapa. Here she plays the role of a very aged woman Mrs. Gupta whose son Buddhadev(Amitabh Bachchan) is a bachelor even during his sixties. He runs one of top restaurants of London and rolls in money but lives without a woman in his life much to the anguish of his mother. Destiny brings him into contact with an Indian tourist Neena(Tabu) and he falls for the charms of a girl thirty years junior to him in age. After initial teasing and 'no-no', Neena also falls in love with this man who is old by age but young by heart. Buddhadev's mother readily agrees for their marriage because it's something she's been waiting for decades but making Neena's Delhi-based father Mr. Varma(Paresh Rawal) consenting for this marriage is a Herculean task because the aspirant groom is older than the hoped-for father-in-law. The movie concludes on the desired note after some interesting twists and arranging not only rib-tickling but also heart-piercing and sentimental moments for the audience.

The title of the movie has been kept as Cheeni Kum(sugar in little quantity) because the first encounter of the lead pair starts with the preparation of Zaafraani Pulaao in the hero's restaurant for the heroine who is dissatisfied with the dish prepared on her order and then the hero who considers himself as a great chef, tells her that Zaafraani Pulaao is to be prepared with a little amount of sugar only because it shouldn't be very sweet. Perhaps the filmmaker has taken this recipe to his heart and he has also not presented an out and out comedy. There is an ample dose of sentiments also through the character of a little girl fondly called as Sexy (Swini Khera) and her sad demise leaving the lead characters especially the Mrs. Gupta and her son as soaked in grief.

The movie is undoubtedly very interesting without boredom at any place and that's the victory of the writer-director R. Balki whose maiden effort in the form of this movie is highly laudable. And the novel story idea combined with the entertainment value being the USP of this movie, it got box office success also. At places, the movie appears to be an adult comedy and is in danger of crossing the boundary line of decency but the talented director has not allowed it to go like that and kept this issue under check.

All the technical aspects are up to the mark. Musical score prepared by Illayaraja is completely in sync with the mood of the movie.

Both Amitabh Bachchan and Tabu are highly talented actors and they have sparkled in this movie right from its opening to its conclusion. Their on-screen chemistry is amazing and heart-conquering. They have proved that the director has chosen the perfect cast for his story. Paresh Rawal, child artist Swini Khera and all the supporting cast members have delivered admirable performances.

And finally, Zohra Sehgal. Zohra Aapa's vivacity, openness and a desire to live every moment of her life to the full sans knowing any bounds for her has found its expression in her role in Cheeni Kum also. During her lifetime, she used to assert quite boldly without any fear that it's sex which always kept her going. In this movie also, she's shown as fond of watching sexy movies, never mind her (highly) advanced years. She has done superbly and instead of acting, has lived her role. Alongwith others, she is also one reason to watch this movie.

While paying my tribute to the Grand Young Lady of the world of art, I recommend Cheeni Kum as a very entertaining movie made on a novel theme to all the movie buffs. I do not term this movie as something great or classic. All the same, it's fair to say that it's a different as well as a very well made movie.
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8/10
Superb
silvan-desouza27 November 2013
Warning: Spoilers
For some reasons, Amitabh played a role where he falls for younger girls, it started with KANK, then NISHABD and then Cheeni Kum. while in Nishabd there was more of late Jiah Khan's legs here this is a more mature love story. The film starts off well, Amitabh's character is well established, the hotel scenes are funny also the romance blossoms well but some scenes are sort of too slapstick like the condom scene but yet the film is well handled. The second half starts well but the entire fast part seems odd but the emotional scenes and last 10 minutes are awesome

Direction by R Balki is good Music is decent though Illayaraja used most of his tamil, kannada songs

Amitabh is a natural and handles his role perfectly, he is simply awesome Tabu compliments him beautifully and adds realism to the part Paresh Rawal is fantastic in a clichéd role Zohra Sehgal is a delight, the lady was 94 when the film released but her energy is simply awesome, Swini Kara is delightful too rest are adequate
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