Half Girlfriend movie review: Arjun and Shraddha’s Half Girlfriend is likable in parts; it fails to be engaging and is just half entertaining!
One line Review: The story of a boy and his intensive love for a girl who chooses to be his half girlfriend.
Positive Points: The movie is likable in parts; the light moments are appreciable.
Negative Points: Despite the length has been managed well, the story has a slow pace. Some utterly illogical sequences may put you off.
Plot: Madhav Jha (Arjun Kapoor) is a Bihari lad who comes to New Delhi to study in St. Stephen's College. He gets admission via sports trial as he is a Basketball champ. He instantly falls for Riya Somani (Shraddha Kapoor) who is an elite Delhite. They become friends over Basket Ball and start hanging out. Madhav’s attraction now turns into an obsession for Riya and he can’t but want her in his life. Although their lives are poles apart, Madhav imagines Riya to be his wife but instead, she chooses to be his Half Girlfriend.
Riya drops out of college to get married to Rohan, who is a rich family friend. Madhav who seems to be in depression, completes his college and heads back to his village Simrao, Bihar. In Simrao, his mother runs a school and Madhav lends a helping hand for it to grow. Fate makes the two meet again, Madhav encounters Riya who is a divorcee now, in Patna. Their fondness grows over English lessons that Riya renders Madhav to prepare for a big speech. Madhav is trying to pitch the Bill Gates Foundation for a grant for their school in Simrao.
Destiny plays the trick again leading to their separation one more time. Madhav who is in immense love does not lose hope and heads even to New York to find his lost love. Will he be able to make Riya his full girlfriend this time?
Direction and other Technical Aspects: Director Mohit Suri who is known to narrate impressive love tales chose to adapt Chetan Bhagat’s novel Half Girlfriend into a feature film and, manages to do a decent job if not exemplary. Despite having read the book, it was somehow difficult to get involved in the story. Arjun Kapoor and his friends got the Bihari accent right and the bits that engaged into some light moments are delightful. There are some irrational sequences that may put you off.
The pace of the movie is slow and is not very gripping. If you have read the book, you can’t help but draw comparisons. Earlier, I was unconvinced with the casting because Bhagat has described his characters and painted a picture through words. But, in the movie, Arjun Kapoor and Shraddha Kapoor tried their best to become the characters, Madhav and Riya. Although the dialogues by Ishita Moitra Udhwani are fine but, the frequent references to half everything may half torture you! You may not be all smiles throughout the film and like it in parts. The last scene will surely make you smile, I am glad that the creative team decided to add it. The least, you will have a smile when you head out from the theatres.
Performances: Arjun Kapoor as Madhav Jha is good. He managed to pull off the role of a small-town Bihari lad convincingly. Although, his sad and gloomy face in majority of the second half may get on you, but some of you may let it go by considering the tragic story of his character.
Shraddha Kapoor is decent as the rich and elite Riya Somani. The actress pulled off emotional scenes quite justifiably.
Vikrant Massey is extremely impressive and probably has given the best performance amongst all. His Bihari accent is on point and acting is supremely natural and believable.
Rhea Chakraborty has a small cameo appearance but makes her presence felt.
Seema Biswas and all the other supporting actors are good and do justice to their roles.
Music: Songs like ‘Baarish’ and ‘Mai Phir Bhi Tumko Chahunga’ stay with you. Rest are passable. Mai Phir bhi Tumko Chahunga by Arijit Singh is a gem that one can play on loop.
Final Verdict: Half Girlfriend earns 2 and a half stars!