Movie Review: Ok Jaanu

Ok Jaanu: Sweet but NOT Impactful

Love Stories are a tight rope to walk on, it either can be extremely engaging and cathartic or it can be flat and boring.

Ok Jaanu is a remake of 2015 Tamil Hit “O Kadhal Kanamai” written & directed by Mani Ratnam, an ace in love stories, hit the bulls eye..Ok-Jaanu-movie-Review

“Ok Jaanu” is an urban love story of a couple Adi (Aditya Roy Kapoor) and Tara (Shradha Kapoor) who does not want to get married and settle for a live- in relationship as they do not want to commit for long term as they have their respective careers to take care of. They stay with an older couple Gopi (Nasseruddin Shah) and Charu (Leela Samson), Charu suffers from an advanced stage of Alzheimer. Will Adi & Tara be serious and commit themselves to matrimony or do they go their separate ways, well that is what the movie is all about..

Written by Mani Ratnam, the story is an amalgamation of sweet and bitter moments of the couple Adi & Tara. Well there is where the problem lies in the writing; it remains sweet throughout the movie without too much of conflict. The screenplay remains flat throughout and never picks up either emotionally or otherwise. The older couple was meant to show the real meaning of a relationship, but somewhere even that track lacks conviction. There are moments but it stops at that, and only a few moments cannot give pace to a run time of 137 minutes. The screenplay is painstakingly slow, till the interval nothing really happens. The climax looks a bit hurried and abrupt. In a nutshell not a great script, hence this love story falls in the other category of flat and boring..

Dialogues by Gulzar do not make any impact either, and it sounds very average coming from an ace writer like him.

Performances of the cast try to salvage the script, the chemistry between Aditya Roy Kapoor and Shradha Kapoor as Adi & Tara makes you sit through the movie. Aditya Roy Kapoor as Adi is almost like Aditya playing himself, he breezes through the role and looks and acts well. Shradha Kapoor as Tara on the other hand again gives a remarkable performance, a slight notch higher that Aditya. Nasseruddin Shah as Gopi, the retired judge, tries hard to make sense through his performance, for a half baked character, but still creates an impact. Leela Samson as Charu, Gopi’s wife does not have much to do but still does a decent job. Kitu Kidwani as Tara’s Mother is wasted. Rest of the cast also do a good job..

Ravi K Chandran’s camera captures Mumbai so beautifully that it becomes a character in the narration. Production Design by Sharmistha Roy is chick, urban and modern, apt for the movie. Costumes by Eka Lakhani suits each character to the T…

Shaad Ali yet again fails to impress, all the departments compliment the movie, other than the script which falls flat. Shaad has been missing the bus for the last few outings because of its writing which is underwhelming. But kudos to Shaad for extracting some good performances, but overall Shaad fails to deliver…

The chemistry between Aditya & Shradha is the only saving grace for the movie; I will go with Three Stars…

Movie Rating: (3 / 5)

 

Official Trailer: OK Jaanu

The hit pair of Aditya Roy Kapoor and Shradha Kapoor is back with “OK Jaanu” after 4 years since their last “Aashiqui 2” which released in 2013 and was a big hit. “Aashiqui 2” catapulted the career of both the actors in Bollywood, who were struggling till then…Ok-Jaanu-Official-Trailer

“Ok Jaanu” is a remake of the 2015 hit tamil movie “OK Kanmani” directed by Mani Ratnam, which had Dulquer Salmaan & Nithya Menen in the lead. Written by Mani Ratnam and Dialogues by Gulzar, the story is of a modern day couple who decide not to get married and go in for a live in relationship…

Directed By Shaad Ali, the principal cast of “OK Jaanu” comprises of Aditya Roy Kapoor, Shradha Kapoor, Naseeruddin Shah & Leela Samson..

After a string of flops like Jhoom Barabar Jhoom (2007) & Kill Dil (2014) whether Shaad Ali will redeem himself with “OK Jaanu” is yet to be seen…

The music of “OK Jaanu” is composed by the ace Music director A R Rahman…

“OK Jaanu” has been produced by Mani Ratnam & Karan Johar under the banner of Madras Talkies & Dharma Productions respectively…

The official trailer gives us a peek on the premise of the movie which looks similar to “Love Aaj Kal”….

“OK Jaanu” releases on 13th Jan 2017….till then enjoy the Trailer…

 

Movie Review: Dear Zindagi

Dear Zindagi: Dear Actors make it Dear to watch

“Dear Zindagi” has a fabulous set up, a stellar ensemble cast led by none other than Shahrukh Khan & Alia Bhatt who come together for the first time, a director like Gauri Shinde whose last outing as a director was “English Vinglish” which was both critically acclaimed and a box office success and a good concept…dear_zindagi_movie_review

“Dear Zindagi” is a movie from the eyes of the principal character Kaira (Alia Bhatt), who has issues with her love relationships as she is commitment phobic, this leads to turmoil in her life, at this juncture she meets a shrink Dr Jehangir Khan a.k.a Jug (Shahrukh Khan) who shows a different perspective of life. Is Kiara able to fight her inner demons and comes out clean is what the movie is all about….

Concept wise “Dear Zindagi” gets ten on ten, but it is the screenplay which becomes the Achilles heel for the movie. The first half is spent on delving on Kiara’s life and just like her life the screenplay by Gauri Shinde also does not go anywhere and it picks up a bit just pre interval when Dr Jehangir Khan enters, and you feel now the movie is going to pick up, but sadly the movie just looses the plot in the second half and becomes a drag. The biggest problem of the writing is that it never peaks and is monotonous throughout. The pace is another hindrance especially in the second half where the numerous psychiatric sessions just becomes too much and you as an audience start feeling to go to a shrink. The biggest drawback of the screenplay is that there is no entertainment quotient which could enhance the overall viewing experience; rather it is more cerebral without any outcome. The writing fails to live up to the entire set up..

Where “Dear Zindagi” scores is its performance from the entire ensemble cast, Alia Bhatt as Kaira is a huge revelation; she carries the complex character on her young shoulders with ease and gives a crackling performance. Alia overshadows everybody including Shahrukh Khan in her portrayal. As an actress Alia’s performance in “Dear Zindagi” is another feather in her cap. Shahrukh Khan as Dr Jehangir Khan plays his age and gives his best after “Chak De”, a very subtle yet impactful performance. We need more such performances from the brilliant Shahrukh Khan. Amongst the host of male leads,  Kunal Kapoor as Raghuvendra, Angad Bedi as Sid and Ali Zafar as Rumi, it is Kunal Kapoor who creates an impact, definitely a good actor who has been under rated and not utilized by Bollywood that much. Angad Bedi after the impactful performance of “Pink” just fizzles out as Sid in the crowd can’t blame him completely but even the writing needs to be blamed. Ali Zaffar as Rumi looks appealing only in the songs and not much can be said about his acting, he remains an eye candy in the movie. Kaira’s friends Fatima a.k.a Fatty played by Ira Dubey and Jackie played by Yashaswini Dayama support Alia Bhatt aptly with their natural and sincere performance, without which Alia’s performance would have looked out of place. Kaira’s Brother played by Rohit Saraf as Kiddo, though not a prominent role and character but still he leaves his mark and his chemistry with Alia as brother and sister is believable. Rest of the cast live up to the expectations and add up in making “Dear Zindagi” bearable…

As the captain of the ship we had huge expectations from Gauri Shinde as a director, especially after the impressive “English Vinglish”, but to our disappointment she falls flat in her second outing whether it is her writing or story telling capabilities. The only department Gauri scores is the concept and above all the performances from each and every actor, I think these are the only two elements which redeems her as a director. But we still believe in Gauri Shinde as a director and would wait for her next with equal anticipation…

Amit Trivedi’s music just does not match the standard of “English Vinglish”, though a few songs like the title track sung by Jasleen Royal & Amit Trivedi and “Just Go to Hell” sung by Sunidhi Chauhan & Amit Trivedi stand out. Was disappointed to see the rip off version of Ilaiyaraja’s “Ae Zindagi Gale laga le” from Sadma sung by Arijit Singh in this movie is left out, it was definitely a track worth to be incorporated…

Laxman Utekar’s camera work makes you fall in love with Goa yet again, and you wanna pack your bags and go for a holiday to Goa…

“Dear Zindagi” unfortunately fails to deliver, it is Shahrukh Khan & Alia Bhatt’s performance which makes it worth a watch…I will go with Two and a Half Star…

Movie Rating: (2.5 / 5)

Latest Movie Trailers: Kapoor & Sons

Kapoor & Sons- Synopsis

Dharma Production is back with a triangular love story “Kapoor & Sons” which is primarily a story of two brothers Rahul (Fawad Khan) and Arjun (Sidharth Malhotra) who fall for the same girl Tia (Alia Bhatt). Well you wonder what is new, the new twist is the backdrop of a dysfunctional family of the Kapoors which includes the GrandpaOfficial Trailer of Kapoor & Sons (Rishi Kapoor), the parents played by Rajat Kapoor the father and Ratna Pathak Shah the mother. Written by Ayesha Devitre Dhillon and Shakun Batra “Kapoor & Sons” is a heady mix of a triangular love story with a quirky dysfunctional element makes it a bit different…

The ensemble cast of Rishi Kapoor, Sidharth Malhotra, Fawad Khan, Rajat Kapoor & Ratna Pathak Shah makes it more compelling…

Shakun Batra is back wearing the director’s hat for the second time after “Ek Main Aur Ek Tum”(2012). Dharma Production’s latest offering has music by a band of music directors Amaal Mallik, Badshah, Fazilpuria, Arko Parvo Mukherjee, Benny Dayal, Nucleya & Tanishka Bagchi, well which makes the music much awaited…

The cinematography is by Jeffery F Bierman and Edited by Shivkumar V Panickar…..

“Kapoor & Sons” is produced by Karan Johar, Hiroo Yash Johar & Apoorva Mehta and distributed by Fox Star Studios and hits theatres 18th March 2016….

Till then enjoy the Official Trailer Below….

Celebrating 20 Years of DDLJ

I still remember the day 20th Oct 1995 in a small town Jabalpur standing in queue for the tickets of the First Day First Show of “Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayege”. I had a friend for company whom I dragged to watch DDLJ as he was keener on Madhuri Dixit starrer “Yaraana” (also released on the same day) was sulking since “Yaraana” was showing in the adjacent theater. The poster was newly pasted and there was not too much of a crowd for 9:30 AM show. Who knew that this movie will make history….

00---Dilwale-Dulhania-Le-Jayenge-(1995)-(VMR)--Covers--(Inlay2)

It was a Shahrukh Khan- Kajol starrer who gave the successful Baazigar and Karan Arjun but as a pair there was nothing to write about then. It was a launch pad for Aditya Chopra, elder son of Yash Chopra and Yashraj Productions was celebrating 25 years with its release.

The movie started and I was transported to a different world of Raj & Simran and before I could realize the 186 mins got over. When I walked out of the theater I wanted scream to the world that this is the best love story ever made in Bollywood.

It had a very different concept, the main lead Raj was hardly anything that the Bollywood Hero was. Raj was a failure, a loser and absolutely nothing that can be idolized. What clicked with the audience was that the characters were realtable. The magic of Raj & Simran was immortalized beautifully by Shahrukh Khan & Kajol making them the next hit Jodi of Bollywood. Later they gave blockbusters like “Kuch Kuch Hota Hai”, “Kabhi Khushi Kabhi Gham” & “My Name Is Khan”. People still wait for a movie with Shahrukh Khan & Kajol, a magic which still lasts.

Written by Aditya Chopra himself the screenplay had some extremely riveting sequences, who can forget the “Palat” sequence or the sequence between Farida Jalal and Kajol who played mother daughter wherein she explains to Simran how women need to sacrifice in this world ruled by men or the 10 minute rendition of Raj played by Shahrukh in front of Simran’s family in the climax as to why he cannot elope with her and above all the train sequence in the climax. These sequences are still so fresh in the minds as if it was yesterday. Aditya Chopra not only consolidated his position as a director but as a proficient writer as well with DDLJ. Later he made successful movies like “Mohabatein” & “Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi”. We are still waiting for his next venture.

DDLJ started the NRI brand of Bollywood movies and Shahrukh Khan became the favorite of the Indian Diaspora which is true even today. Karan Johar who also acted in the movie as Fonchi, Raj’s friend who later perfected the art of NRI designed movies with “Kuch Kuch Hota Hai” and “Kabhi Kushi kabhi Gham”.

DDLJ was the first few films to be mixed in Dolby Sound in India and was released in Dolby SR across India. The video rights of DDLJ were held back for a long time similar to how Rajshri Productions did for “Hum Aapke Hain Koun…”

DDLJ became the biggest grosser of 1995 and till 2015 it is the top 5 highest grosser of Bollywood with a total earning till date of Rs 1.22 billion worldwide. It is still running in Maratha Mandir, Mumbai for matinee show completing 1000 weeks and still has occupancy of 50%.

DDLJ won 10 Filmfare awards that year. DDLJ is one of the 3 Bollywood movies included in “1001 Movies You Must See Before You Die”, the other movies are “Mother India” & “Deewar”.

The music by Jatin Lalit still remains popular especially “Mehendi Lagake Rakhna” which is played in almost all Indian weddings till date.

DDLJ boosted the Europe tourism and travelling by Euro Rail is still considered an option for honey mooners.

20 years is just another milestone for DDLJ but it will remain in the hearts of Bollywood lovers and a classic which re-invented how love stories should be made in Bollywood…..

Movie Review: Brothers

Brothers: Emotion & Blood Gore both over the top

Remakes have been a part of Bollywood history since long, rather now it is more of Official remakes. “Brothers” isBrothers Posters one such remake of 2013 Hollywood movie “Warrior”.

“Brothers” is a tale of two half brothers David Fernandes(Akshay Kumar) and Monty Fernandes(Sidharth Malhotra)who due to circumstances get separated only to come face to face as rivals in a Boxing competition.

With the original story of “Warrior” written by Gavin O’Connor & Cliff Dorfman, and adapted screenplay by Ekta Pathak Malhotra “Brothers” is dipped in emotions, especially in the first half when it tells the story of the two brothers David & Monty and their equation with their father Gary Fernandes (Jackie Shroff). Rather the first half is so much soaked in over the top emotion that you start feeling quite uncomfortable 30 minutes into the movie. In the name of emotions all the characters are shown either crying, yelling and shouting (call it emotional outburst) or breaking things which gets on to your nerves after a certain point. Each and every character is one dimensional whether it is the brothers or their father or David’s wife Jenny (Jacqueline Fernandes) without any depth or variation neither in their expression nor in their overall impact. The second half is completely dedicated to the boxing matches which looks quite amateurish and with two extremely irritating commentators leading us to a very predictable climax. The only item song is placed in the most inappropriate of situation. Overall “Brothers” is a very poor adaptation of “Warrior”, which neither impresses as an emotional movie or a sports movie.

Dialogues by Sidharth & Garima are quite clichéd and you feel you are watching a movie from the 80’s, rather in the emotional sequences the dialogues do not create any impact making it fall flat on the face. Especially the dialogues of the two commentators are the most irritable.

Akshay Kumar’s honest and earnest portrayal of David Fernandes is the only saving grace of the movie performance wise. He portrays the Physics teacher turned fighter with gusto and also looks fit and agile like a boxer. Sidharth Malhotra as Monty Fernandes has the same expression all throughout the movie and tries very hard to portray the angry young man act but fails miserably, rather his good looks acts detrimental for the role of the rugged Monty, though credit should be given for the training that he went through to portray the character which shows as well. Even Sidharth’s dialect looks forced. Jackie Shroff’s performance as Gary Fernandes, the estranged father borders between over acting and hamming, in some sequences he is so over the top that you cannot even hear his dialogues properly. Jacqueline Fernandes as Jenny has very little to do other than being moist eyed in every scene of hers. Shefali Shah as Maria, the mother gives us a crackling performance in a cameo. Ashutosh Rana as Pasha is wasted in a not so well written role. Kiran Kumar as Briganza, the businessman is again wasted in a inconsequential role. Kulbhushan Kharbanda in a cameo as the school principle was earnest. The two commentators Raj Zutshi & Kavi Shastri are the most irritating of the lot, rather they looked like a caricature. Rest of the cast does not create any impact.

Hemant Chaturvedi’s cinematography is gritty as per the requisite of the story.

Ajay-Atul’s music is very weak, excluding the item song “Mera Naam Mary”, rest of all the songs below par. Ganesh Acharya’s choreography of “Mera Naam Mary” is extremely cheap and I wonder what prompted Kareena Kapoor to do the song. This is by far the cheapest song that Kareena has done.

Karan Malhotra’s direction is extremely over the top whether it is the emotional sequences or the fight sequences which is outright gory in the name of boxing. The only emotion which is displayed is the emotion of hatred all throughout the movie.
It is Akshay Kumar and his portrayal which makes the movie watchable. Rather the whole movie is rested on Akshay Kumar’s broad shoulders.

I will go with 2 stars…

Movie Rating: (2 / 5)

Official Trailer: Shaandaar

After the critically acclaimed and highly successful “Queen”, Vikas Bahl is back with his second venture “Shaandaar”…..

“Shaandaar” is India’s first destination wedding movie, with an impressive ensemble star cast of Shahid Kapoor, shaandaarAlia Bhatt, Pankaj Kapur, Sanjay Kapoor, Sushma Seth, Sanah Kapoor, Diljit Dasanjh, Shibani Dandekar, Anjana Sukhani, Niyati Shah & Karan Johar (In a cameo)…

Story is by Vikas Bahl & Chaitally Parmar and screenplay & dialogues by Anvita Dutt Guptan. Anvita was also the dialogue writer for “Queen”, so we can expect some good writing here….

Vikas repeats his favorite music director Amit Trivedi again, so expect some melodious tunes as well….

“Shaandaar” is jointly being produced by Dharma Productions and Phantom Films, a collaboration which gave us “Hansee Toh Phasee”, so expect the grandeur of Dharma Productions and realism of Phantom Films….

“Shaandaar” looks like light breezy movie from its Official Trailer, but whether will it repeat the critical and box office success of “Queen”…well we need to wait till 22nd Oct’15, the day “Shaandaar” releases…..till then enjoy the trailer

Movie Review : Bombay Velvet

Bombay Velvet: Nothing Jazzy about this Velvet

The much awaited Anurag Kashyap mega budget saga “Bombay Velvet” released this Friday. Looking at the track record of Anurag who breaks norms, the same was expected of “Bombay Velvet”. The movie was touted as the best neo noir movie of Bollywood.

But alas the bubble bust and “Bombay Velvet” based on the famous historian Gyan Prakash’s book “Bombay Fables” is just an ordinary movie which is high on the glamour quotient. The story captures the lives of two individuals Johnny (Ranbir Kapoor) and Rosie (Anushka Sharma) and their love story. Set in 1960’s Bombay it chronicles the events which actually made Bombay the Financial Capital of the country which it is today and how the lives changed for the people living in the city.

Screenplay written by Gyan Prakash & Anurag Kashyap and co-written by Vasan Bala & Thani oscillates from being a love story to being a Bombay Velvet Reviewmafia movie and the outcome is a complete chaos. The movie neither could justify being a love story nor being a mafia thriller. The flow of the screenplay is not smooth and looks as if the events were conceptualized in isolation and later put together. In a nutshell it lacks a story line and instead relies heavily on presentation and glamour. Too many characters without any proper graph are another issue with the writing. The second half is a drag and you just wait for the end to happen. Few sequences are stretched unnecessarily.

The dialogues are hardly impressive. It varies from being either serious to outright stupid making the plot more inconsistent.
It is the Production Design by Sonal Sawant which is the biggest highlight of the movie and actually overshadows other aspects. Every aspect is detailed and is flawless. The other highlight is the costume design by Niharika Khan. Every character’s costumes is detailed to the T, especially the costumes of Anushka during the Jazz performances are commendable. Another highlight which makes the movie a worth watch is the cinematography by Rajeev Ravi, he captures the Bombay of 60’s beautifully. Predominantly shot in Sepia tone, it complements the mood of the movie beautifully.

Editing by Prerna Saigal and Hollywood’s Thelma Schoonmaker is another flaw; it could have been more crisp and concise.
Amit Trivedi’s music is the most soothing factor of the movie. Amit’s jazz compositions will be remembered for a long time. Amiabh Bhattacharya’s lyrics go from being poetic to outright chessy what with words like “Dhadham Dhadham” in a song sequence meant to be sad sequence.

Performances by the ensemble cast make the movie bearable. Ranbir as Johnny the fickle minded, short tempered orphan does an earnest job, though I would not say this is his best performance but he tries very hard to overcome the short comings of the writing. Anushka as Rosie the jazz singer is a complete miscast. She lacked the oomph factor which was required for this role, though she brings the innocence but fails to create an overall impact. Karan Johar as the scheming and menacing Kaizad Khambatta does well in whatever was given to him, but looks visibly uncomfortable in the menacing acts. Kay Kay Menon though has a brief role of a detective, but he shines the most and overshadows others. The surprise package of the movie is Satyadeep Mishra as Chimman, Johnny’s best buddy. Satyadeep’s act is effortless and extremely impressive. Siddharth Basu as the Mayor struggles both in language and in performance. Manish Choudhary as Jimmy Mistry is impressive. Rest of the cast does a good job.

Anurag Kashyap ambition unfortunately did not match his vision, which resulted in “Bombay Velvet” being a wannabe mix of Martin Scorsesse and Quinton Tarrantino movie. Kashyap was not clear whether he wanted to make Broadway Musical or a Criminal Thriller or a quintessential love story, a huge disappointment by Anurag Kashyap. I will go with Two and a Half Stars…

Movie Rating: (2.5 / 5)

Trailer : Bombay Velvet

Anurag Kashyap is ready with his most ambitious, first mega project “Bombay Velvet”, based on Gyan Prakash’s novel “Mumbai Fables”.

Set in the 1960’s Bombay (and not Mumbai) this neo noir Romantic thriller tells the love story of a boxer Johnny Balraj (played by Ranbir Bombay Velvet TrailerKapoor) and jazz singer Rosie (played by Anushka Sharma) who works for a club Bombay Velvet, run by media mughal Kaizad Khambatta (Played by Karan Johar).

There are too many firsts in the movie, this is Anurag Kashyap’s first mega budget movie, going by the looks in the promos it looks quite stylish for a Anurag Kashyap movie, Karan Johar debuts as an antagonist for the first time (it will be interesting to see how he pulls off), this is Ranbir Kapoor’s first dark movie, all in all “Bombay Velvet” is a much awaited movie of the year.

Produced by Fox Star Studios and Phantom this mega budget movie has music by Amit Trivedi and lyrics by Amitabh Bhattacharya.

Looking at the promo of “Bombay Velvet” the whole look of the movie has been inspired heavily by neo noir Hollywood movie “LA Confidential” and some shades of “Godfather”.

Whatever maybe the case “Bombay Velvet” is undoubtedly a movie to watch out for…..and your wait ends 15th May’15…..till then enjoy the promo…..

Official Trailer : Ungli

Ungli_2Dharma Productions new offering “Ungli” is something completely different from their usual Candy Floss love stories and Rom com…

Directed by Rensil D’Silva, it tells us the story of a group of five who rebel against corruption and start a group called Ungli, whose main motto is exposing the corrupt and teaching them a lesson…

Rensil D’Silva has earlier directed “Kurbaan” in 2009 for Dharma Productions which bombed at the box office.

The ensemble cast comprises of Sanjay Dutt, Emraan Hashmi, Kangana Ranaut, Randeep Hooda, Neil Bhoopalan, Angad Bedi, Neha Dhupia & Arunoday Singh. I must say quite an interesting cast…

The movie was initially scheduled to release last year but the movie got delayed due to Sanjay Dutt’s arrest and later Karan Johar thought of introducing songs which was not there in the original script. Shradha Kapoor is doing an item number in this movie.

The promo is looking promising. The movie releases on 28th Nov 2014…let’s see whether Rensil gets a hit with this one….

 

Trivia KUCH KUCH HOTA HAI

TRIVIA….Did you know that the story of “KUCH KUCH HOTA HAI” was actually a combination of TWO stories written by Karan Johar for his debut…for details read below….

Trivia 9

Trailer : Humty Sharma ki Dulhania

SOTY pair Varun Dhawan & Alia Bhatt come together in this Dharma style rom com directed by Shashank Khaitan….going by the promo it looks the arch typical Bollywood romance for the NRI market….releasing 11th July’14

Review : Hasee Toh Phasee

Hansee To Phasee: A different take on Bollywood’s quintessential Love story

What happens when Karan Johar (Dharma Productions) and Anurag Kashyap (Phantom Productions) come together?…..One production which produces larger than life Bollywood saga and another who are more into small budget realistic Cinema…

Well the combination doesn’t disappoint and offers a quirky love story of two completely different individuals one a directionless youth Nikhil Bharadwaj (Sidharth Malhotra) and other a weird extremely hyper, pseudo girl Meeta (Parineeti Chopra). How they meet for the first time and again Hasee Toh Phaseethey meet after 7 years but the situation is different, now Nikhil is marrying Meeta’s sister Karishma (Adah Sharma). How they come to know each other during the course of the wedding celebrations and fall in love forms the love story of “Hansee to Phasee”.

Though on the onset the story looks extremely hackneyed plot of a quintessential Bollywood triangle love story but where it scores is the character of Meeta, an imperfect girl and Nikhil the dashing dude and their chemistry which turns into a love story. The story and screenplay by Harshvardhan Kulkarni goes few notches higher for brilliantly writing the lead characters and the screenplay has some remarkable moments like all the sequences of Nikhil and Meeta ‘s interactions or the sequence when Meeta re-unites with her father. Though it also has some regular caricature characters of uncle and aunts and brothers seen in such kind of movies.

Another highlight of the movie is its dialogues written by Anurag Kashyap, Vinil Mathew, Harshvardhan Kulkarni & Purva Naresh. The dialogues are realistic and funny at the same time. The dialogues make the screenplay move few notches higher.

It is the performances that make the movie a worthwhile watch especially Pareeniti Chopra’s portrayal of Meeta is just excellent and takes the movie to a different level, right from her body language to the way she talks everything is PERFECT, it won’t be a too much to say that she is the ‘Jaan’ of the movie. Sidharth Malhotra in his second movie shows an exemplary growth in his performance and suits the role of Nikhil to the ‘T’. Adah Sharma as Meeta’s sister Karishma also gives a good performance of a quirky girlfriend who is ready for a break up anytime. The supporting cast like Dilip Joshi, Sarat Saxena etc also do a splendid job.

Cinematography by Sanu John Varghese captures Mumbai well. Music by Vishal Shekhar is average and does not have any song which is worthwhile.

Vinil Mathew’s direction captures the small nuances of a relationship well and is successful in keeping the narrative simple yet engaging and making the story believable. Overall an entertaining movie which is worth a watch. One star extra for Pareeniti Chopra for her brilliant performance.

Review : Student Of The Year

SOTY:Karan Johar‘s larger than life Bollywood movie

Welcome to the world of KJo, actors in perfect designer clothes, best of cars, candy floss romance, good looking actors, picture perfect sets & settings well color co-ordinated,  in short a larger than life Bollywood movie fare.

Let us accept it that KJo has created his own brand of cinema, which you can love or hate but definitely cannot ignore it & SOTY is exactly the same Student Of The YearKJo brand of movie.

SOTY  is a story of two friends Rohan Nanda (Varun Dhawan) & Abhimanyu Singh (Sidharth Malhotra) who meet in St Teresa who initially hate each other but eventually become friends until the “Student of the Year” challenge is declared by the dean Yogendra  Vashisht (Rishi Kapoor). The challenge turns the friends into competitors, how it plays havoc in their lives forms the basis of the story…

Though the story is predictable but the screenplay by Rensil Dsilva creates the impact, some sequences are very well written and some look a bit amateurish, like the main challenge to win “Student of the Year” looks weak. The pace is slow at times. The dialogues of Niranjan Iyengar makes up for the loose screenplay, it is spunky and the lingo is contemporary adding to the zing.

The debutants especially Varun Dhawan and Sidharth Malhotra are impressive, they grow as the movie progresses. Varun in particular excels both in acting as well as dancing, a lad to watch out for. Sidharth does justice to whatever given. Alia Bhatt has little to do, her character reminds you of Poo in K3G but without the spunk, but overall she is decent. The main highlight is the support cast especially Rishi Kapoor who plays the gay dean with panache; his portrayal is both funny and moving. Other cast like Ronit Roy, Ram Kapoor, Kayoze Irani, Sana Saeed, Mansi Rach, Sahil Anand & Gautami Kapoor are impressive.

The music by Vishal Shekhar is good and so is the picturization by Farah Khan, Vaibhavi Merchant, Bosco-Ceaser & Remo. All the songs are lavishly shot and the look is rich, but the Disco Song by Remo & Radha song by Farah Khan stands out.

The camera work by Ananyanka Bose is good. How can you miss the costume designer in a Karan Johar movie both Manish Malhotra & Shiraj Siddique do a splendid job which gives the movie the zing.

In a nutshell SOTY is lavishly mounted candy floss over the top KJo –ish type of Bollywood cinema which is aptly shouldered by Varun Dhawan & Sidharth Malhotra. 3 stars from me, one extra for the debutants.