Guys don't come much cuter than Shahid Kapur and he sure can bust a move, but when you come down to it that's all Bollywood's CHANCE PE DANCE has going for it. The film's overwrought screenplay combines two plot lines (both of which are cliches in both Hollywood and Bollywood) 1) that of the long suffering but extremely talented young actor/dancer trying to make it big in showbiz, and 2) the teacher who turns an unwilling band of misfits into into a winning team...while (of course) searching for true love, after all this is Bollywood. Surprisingly the second plot line is given very short shrift with more attention being placed on how our hero (having been evicted from his apartment) uses the school as a way to survive the elements and pick up a couple of quick bucks. Even more surprising is the fact that after the students are turned into dancers virtually overnight we are never really rewarded with the kind of dance competition we expect to see them compete in. One dance, give 'em the trophy, bam, that's it.
The script is much more generous in its dealing with our hero's suffering as he attempts to become a star however. Virtually no type of suffering has been been spared. In the beginning stardom seems to almost fall into his lap when he is spotted at a dance club by a prominent director, but no such luck, it's merely part of a chain of broken promises and betrayals and shattered dreams--the prize is dangled before him and snatched back time and again with the kind of cruelty you see only in melodramas. Even true love (in the form of beauteous Genelia D'Souza) looks as if it will slip through his fingers. Finally ( 130 minutes later) he has one last chance to make it--in a sort of American Idol/So You Think You Can Dance type TV show. Will he succeed and become a star or does fate have one last sucker punch in store for him? Or both, after all this IS Bollywood.
CHANCE PE DANCE is not a film I would recommend to someone as their first Bollywood experience, it's nothing special. I found it to be worth a single viewing only because of Shahid Kapur whose other films I will be checking out. Did I mention he's good looking?
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