Rating : 6/10
Release Date : 18th April, 2014
Time : 149 minutes
Director & Writer : Abhishek Varman (based on the novel by Chetan Bhagat); Music : Shankar Ehsaan Loy
Starring : Arjun Kapoor, Alia Bhatt, Amrita Singh, Ronit Roy, Revathi, Shivkumar Subramaniam
Someone decided to take a light, humorous, fictionalized account of cross cultural marriage and make a masala film out of it. Thus reducing its IQ level even further. Reducing most of the characters to caricatures. Adding in several songs, co-ordinated dance moves and fancy outfits. The lead pair, though, look good and are peppy. And the film has its funny moments and fair share of one liners, giving us a light, frothy, very predictable one time watch
They (Arjun & Alia) both meet in IIM-A and slowly but surely fall in love. A few songs and some steamy scenes, kisses later, its time for them to involve their parents. And that’s when the predictable North-South divide comes in. Arjun has to woo Alia’s very dour, staid folks (Revathi and Shivkumar) while she has to patao his dowry & ‘hum ladke wale hain’ obsessed, gauche mother (Amrita Singh) and also try to figure out where the land lies in his frosty, awkward relationship with his dad, Ronit. And then they have to get their respective parents to like each other…
The book is usually better than the movie and so is the case here (Disclaimer : I found the book really funny, probably Chetan’s best and had even met him a few times for the movie rights). The leads were good fun, both seemed to enjoy themselves in their roles, displayed some witty repartee and exude charm, though Alia’s South Indian roots were not really visible apart from a couple of gajra’s and one dance performance. Also, without the explanations behind the characters, the parents say things to each other which don’t seem natural, getting too petty, stereotypical too quickly. The second half drags and while the songs are fine as an album, in the movie it made most people just reach for their mobile phones.
Its not bad, enough peppiness and laughs (The Duke and Minty wedding entrance, Arjun's turn as a gawky, MCP-ish nerd in the beginning and Alia's response to that) to keep you going but if the central theme, as in the book, was to show how Indian marriages are not just about a couple getting together but also the respective families, I felt it was a job half done.
(Disclaimer 2 : Being from IIM-A and also having just been to campus a few months ago, somehow didn’t like seeing our alma mater in the shoot. Didn’t expect this reaction from self but it almost seemed like an invasion of privacy watching our hallowed grounds, awe-inspiring plaza and beautiful arches cheapened by Hindi film songs, especially with wording like Locha-E-Ulfat)