\"Baabul\" is an interesting movie...much like two entirely separate movies stuck together. The first portion is a very traditional Indian romance...with all the usual cliches, such as the singing montages, the normal meet cute and that she disliked him when they first met. While this was good...it was also incredibly familiar. However, the second portion, in its way, is anything but traditional...heck, it deliberately seeks to subvert traditions....and this is why I grew to eventually love this movie.In the romantic portion, Avi (Salman Khan) is the beloved son of a rich man, Balraj (Amitabh Bachchan). Avi meets Mili (Rani Mukerji) and instantly is smitten with her. Not surprisingly, they eventually marry. During all this portion, there are hints to what is coming next (such as the aunt who is essentially kept a prisoner following her husband's death). Yes, Avi is killed in an accident and Mili is inconsolable. While she has a son to raise, she is barely functional. And, throughout this, Balraj's heart breaks. This is because although she is technically his daughter-in-law, he sees her like a daughter and would do anything to take away her pain. So, he formulates a plan...to find Rajat (John Abraham) and bring him back to court Mili and, hopefully, marry her and give her a reason to live.While all this seems pretty reasonable for a non-Indian, there are Indian traditions that many follow that simply could not allow for Mili to remarry. For many, a widow is always a widow.....and her happiness should come from being a widow and staying at home and...well...existing. So how will Balraj deal with his family His wife doesn't want Mili to marry, as she'll likely leave them...and take the grandchild with her. And, what about Balraj's older brother He's extremely traditional and will not flex in the least. So what's nextThe final portion of the film deserves an 11 out of 10...it is that good. The giant climactic scene where Balraj is confronted by his family (when they object to Mili's remarriage) is simply brilliant and Bachchan is given a marvelous monolog...one that grips you by the heart and won't let go. Overall, a marvelous film...one you should see with a box of Kleenex nearby!
Okay, in all fairness this movie didn't deserve to flop and perhaps it wouldn't have had it not been for the controversial issues surrounding the plot and well, yeah maybe that Salman Khan. Nevertheless, I would say definitely see it (if you haven't already) for the stellar cast, awe-inspiring leading performances by Amitabh Bachchan and Rani Mukherjee, as well as memorable supporting turns by John Abraham (who manages to upstage Khan, with very little effort might I add), Om Puri and Hema Mallini.In summary, the film revolves around a young man named Avinash (played by Khan) who returns home to India upon studying overseas and bumps into the girl of his dreams, Milli (played by Mukherjee). In order to win her affection he plays down his rich boy persona by inventing series of lies that help the attraction and eventual love between blossom. But sooner than latter the truth comes out and Avinash's dad (Played by Bachchan) steps in to plead on his son behalf keep his son from being deserted by his sweetheart. All of this leads to a very dramatic and overdone (mostly on the part of Mr. Salman Khan and his weird theatrics) marriage proposal. But not before we are introduced to Rajat (played by John Abraham) Milli's best-friend since childhood who (in case you haven't guesses it) harbours deep affection for Milli as well. Nevertheless, he keeps his feelings secret and allows Milli to marry. Years later a horrible tragedy reunites the two childhood friends and leads to the major dose of controversy in the film, which ties the whole plot together.My main issues with Baabul were: 1. The length - especially because the unnecessary scenes were less than few and far between. They had a good story to tell but stuffed it up with a bunch of crap at the seams. They should have cut a lot of the Avinash scenes because in all essence, the meat of the movie had to do with Milli and her father-in-law.2. \"Buddy! Buddy! Buddy.\" Nough Said.3. The whole scene surrounding Avinash and Milli bumping into each other at the airport but not formally meeting has been so overdone in Hindi movies that I could have done without seeing it one more time. Then to add insult atop of injury, they also had the nerve to do the very cliché 'walk away, look back. walk away look back' lovers last glance crap in another scene. Um, hello! Get creative.4. The painfully shameless product endorsements of items like Taj Mahal Chai, Sergie Donuts or whatever it said on that shirt Avinash was wearing, Eros Jewellry, Dove soap, Audi, Mercedes Benz just to mention a few. If you're going to roll it with the credits, why do you also feel the need to bombard us with the products during the film5. The drag racing scene between father and son at the beginning of the movie, how irresponsible and unnecessary was that Bollywood needs to stop glorifying dangerous and reckless behaviour.There was absolutely no suspense within the film, you could predict what would happen next in almost every scene but thankfully the explosive ending vindicated the entire nearly 3 hour film. Without any upfront competition from any actress her age in the entire film, Rani Mukherji had room to shine, glow, shimmer and whatever else they could afford for her to do throughout the film. She owned every scene she was in and I must admit that she was better (both in her acting as well as dressing) in this film than in Kabhi Alvida Naa Kehna. The music was also very good, especially the hauntingly beautiful score. I give Baabul an A- 153554b96e