Saw it with BikerGirl yesterday. Matinee on a holiday; I thought the theatre would be full, but it wasn’t. We got our tickets, plonked ourselves confortably on our seats and sat and watched a more-than-three-hour-long movie.
I had fun; lots of fun. There were bits where I smiled with the characters, almost cried with them, there were bits where I drooled over John Abraham and bits where I drooled over Vidya Balan. I laughed out loud at the jokes, and tapped my feet to some of the songs. So, good fun.
It also tries out a new-ish format, weaving different stories together. But it’s not entirely successful at that. One of the stories is ham-handedly tacked on like the comedy track in a bad Telugu movie, and even among the other five, sometimes the movement from one to the other is very jerky and disorienting. As for the format itself, though fashionable, it seems to have worked well only in Crash and Love Actually. And this movie is no Love Actually, though I’ve heard hints to that effect. (All it aspires for, even, is to be a Romance Actually.)
As BikerGirl said, one lovable thing about the movie is its tongue-in-cheekiness, and an ability to laugh at itself. The filmi cliches are used in the ‘serious’ stories, and parallelly laughed at in the non-serious ones. Like the groom’s girlfriend bursting in on a wedding with a “Yeh shaadi nahin ho sakti“, and immediately after that’s sorted out, the bride’s boyfriend bursting in and looking sheepish, not knowing what to say, till he’s handed his line: “Yeh shaadi nahin ho sakti“!
The movie also pays it subtle homages to Love Actually: part of the story is set in London, and the airport is a favourite theme – the sliding doors through with ‘dream girl’ walks into Govinda’s life, John and Vidya saying goodbye in the lounge and bumping into Akshaye Khanna, and of course, the last, mad, only-in-a-Hindi-movie scene between Anil Kapoor and Juhi Chawla.
The single best thing about the movie, however, is the John-Vidya story. Two really good looking people, an amazing chemistry – bubbly sugary romance as well as the smouldering passionate setting-the-screen-on-fire, a wonderful plot, and characters that the actors slip into like hands into a well-worn glove. Well worth a whole movie of its own.
In all, three and a half hours well spent!