It’s a fair bet that Republican presidential hopeful Rick Santorum would be awfully torn by the queasy capitalism behind the premise of the Bollywood romantic comedy “Jodi Breakers”: An enterprising young man starts a new business (yes!) by helping troubled married couples speed up their divorces (no!).
Of course, the screwball pep in writer-director Ashwini Chaudhary’s story comes in the pre-intermission hour, when confident ladies’ man Sid (R. Madhavan) and alluring partner Sonali (Bipasha Basu) ply their cynical trade, usually via elaborate adulterous entrapment.
But when they’re rooked by a client into breaking up a happy husband and wife during a trip to Greece that also threatens to make real their simmering attraction to each other, the second half slows to a rueful crawl as Sid and Sonali must quickly turn their energies toward repairing rather than rending.
By that point the leaps in story logic and thuddingly broad attempts at humor — in case it wasn’t ha-ha enough that a strongman client of Sid’s drinks milk, Chaudhary throws in a mooing-cow sound cue — have done their own work divorcing any potential enchantment or pleasure from this choppy, hammily acted and aggressively superficial factory product.