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Aamdani Atthani Kharcha Rupaiya
Producer: G.A. Sheshagiri Rao
Director: K. Raghavendra Rao
Starring: Chandrachur Singh, Tabu, Govinda, Juhi Chawla, Jonny Lever, Ketaki Dave, Vinay Anand and Isha Koppikar
Music: Himesh Reshammiya
Lyrics: Sudhakar Sharma
Recommended Audience: Parental Guidance
Approximate Running Time: 2 Hrs 30 Mins
Film Released on: 21 December 2001
Reviewed by: Narbir Gosal  - Rating: 4.0 / 10
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Public Rating Average: 5.12 / 10 (rated by 411 viewers)
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With such a big starcast, I was pretty dissapointed that Aamdani Atthani Kharcha Rupaiya didn┬┤t make it to many cinema halls on opening day. It┬┤s no wonder either, the trailors hardly began appearing on television, and the music was released very late (and furthermore, it never caught on!) and all of a sudden the film had a quiet release as well! Pretty bad since the movie boasts of some pretty talented stars. Once I began to watch the movie I realized why it never made it to many on!

Meet Ravi and Meena (Chandrachur Singh and Tabu), a happy husband and wife who live in a complex with their little daughter Rani. The couple is happy except for one thing, money always seems to go short. Meena is having trouble taking care of the household expenses with the one measly paycheck Ravi gets on the 1st of each month. Ravi has no problem spending his money and then borrowing it from others later on. As a result, both are constantly in debt, but they aren´t the only ones in this situation. Their neighbours (and Ravi´s co-workers), Appu Khote (Jonny Lever) and Vijay (Vinay Anand) have the same problem. Their wives Vimla (Ketaki Dave) and Anjali (Isha Koppikar) never have enough money to support the household, and to top it off, Appu and Vimla have four kids. So whether it be a question of paying the rent, the utilities, or even the childrens school fees, there never seems to be any money! The wives are constantly annoyed with answering the creditors while the husband´s make the money and then spend it. One fine day a new couple Bhimsha (Bhim or Sajanwa) and Jhoomri (played by Govinda and Juhi Chawla) move into the complex next door. The wives instantly take to this loveable couple. Bhim who used to be a big ruffian seems to have settled down and become content with doing household chores while Jhoomri goes out to work. They make enough money to support their one child and have some left over for luxuries after a budget of monthly expenses. When Meena, Vimla and Anjali approach Jhoomri for advice on their finacial needs, Jhoomri suggest taking up a job. The ladies then relay the plan to their husband´s who outright ridicule their wives and tell them where a woman´s place in society is. But when the husbands loose their bonus and then their jobs, the wives are forced to begin working to support their households. To add to their woes, their husbands kick them out of the house because of their jobs.  The females turn to Jhoomri and Bhim for help, and in the process hope to change their husband´s mentalities.

So lets talk about the one plus the film has going for it, the performances. Govinda and Juhi are scene stealers. Their characters are so pleasant that you almost wish their roles weren┬┤t so short. Their chemistry on screen is so fun and carefree that you can┬┤t help but love them, which is why their scenes together are the best ones. Another surprise of the movie is the hilarious comical performance of Ketaki Dave! The woman is absolutley loveable! Even in the worst situation (like when her husband abuses her), she makes you laugh with her mannerisms or her cute faces. You almost want to encourage Johnny to hit her some more, but then that would be wrong. Her best scene (it was hard to pick it) is the one where she rebels after the husband┬┤s bring the bar girl home. Tabu is alright in her role as Meena. She has played so many strong females that she seems very fake playing this one. It is just unrealistic to take that much from a husband and not do anything about it especially if you are Tabu. Vinay Anand is ok, he┬┤s got potential, but at times he seems to ape his uncle Govinda, or he is just plain overacting. Isha Koppikar needs to get better roles, she┬┤s always that sidey little girl who seems like a glorified prop. She has talent but it is never used. Chandrachur Singh is annoying and a bad actor. One wonders if Maachis was just a flash in the pan. Even he doesn┬┤t seem to belive the lines that he is spurting out at times. His performance is too overdone and unconvincing.

So now that the pluses are out of the way, lets get to the minuses which is everything else. The direction is shoddy and could have been done better on a handheld camera. Plus the funny scenes and the serious scenes get so mixed up that you can hardly distinguish the two. So you end up laughing at the wrong times, and a horrible background score doesn┬┤t help either. The story isn┬┤t even convincing. It is such an old theme, that the film seems like it was copied from an eighties social drama at times. The film carries the message that it is good to budget your money, but it doesn┬┤t come through that well. Maybe it┬┤s because of all those male chauvanist speeches and the ultimate man vs. woman issue which seems to overtake everything else! Besides the characters are so ill defined. No woman would stay with such chauvanist husbands who always preach about a woman being a servant to her husband. What is worse is that Vimla┬┤s character (despite being so cute) puts up with so much abuse, it seems like a story from Jerry Springer. The angle with Meena and Ravi and their sick daughter seems to be forced. There are so many scenes which do not gel well with todays times you wonder if you are watching an eighties telefilm. Overall and unconvincing plot ruins the whole thing, and with some haphazard scenes, things don┬┤t get much better. To add to that the tacky songs and their even tackier picturisations do not help one bit and their placemant is even worse. Shoddy production values take away from an already lame film.

To end it off, the film may provide you with a few laughs (mainly from Ketaki Dave), but it will be a headache in the end. It was a good idea, but in the wrong time. Plus with such a low budget, and such horrible production values, a lackluster script and so much more, the good performances are even overshadowed. So here┬┤s a tip on how to save your money...avoid this movie at all costs!

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