Ae Dil Hai Mushkil: A tale of unrequited love

Love. It is the most written about topic. It is what most movies are made about, especially Indian movies. A love that wins and a love that fails. Stories depict characters falling in love, going through hurdles and either surviving to tell the story or not so someone else can tell the story. But that is not the reality that most people experience. Most people fall in love, feel that tug in their heart but don’t confess to it. They love silently, from a distance. Most people hold it in their heart forever and just move on. Then there are another set of people who manage to confess their love but turns out it’s one-sided. The latter two is what really happens in the world out there.

‘Ae Dil Hai Mushkil’ celebrates this one-sided love. The theme of the story is unrequited love and its power. Millions of common people will identify with it because that’s what love is about; broken promises, broken hearts, weaknesses, anger, madness and a lot of solitude. If you ever fell in love, even if it was brief, you are bound to identify with atleast one of the characters in the movie. The nostalgia and melancholy will set in and tug at your own heart until all those memories come flooding back.

The movie shows you the power of loving alone. Shows you that you are not alone as long as you have your love with you and not really needing the person to be with you. If you are looking for a feel good movie, this is not for you. This is a movie that shows what mature love looks like. Karan Johar has come out of his comfort zone of candy floss pink romances and embraced a more realistic greyed aspect of love. He manages not to succumb to dictated plot lines of love that wins. Instead his movie celebrates love failing again and again.

The lead pair, Anushka and Ranbir have done a fabulous job. They have truly matured in their acting. Anushka looks beautiful and Ranbir has managed to give a subdued but powerful performance without the histrionics of Ved in ‘Tamasha’. Aishwarya as usual looks artificial and lacks the depth and passion the other actors are able to portray, especially relevant because her role is all about passion and she fails to scorch the screen. Fawad has a brief role but leaves an impact.

What kills the movie is the pace. Although important, Karan takes a long time to develop the characters and you are left waiting for the story to begin until you realize there is none. You have to view it just as pages from an incomplete diary. The last fifteen minutes of the movie is also a spoiler. Karan could have done without that bit. He stepped away from realism and ended it on a melodramatic twist that was just not needed.

The music and dialogues are definitely a plus. Channa mereya is a personal favorite, along with Bulleya and the Break-up song. Being a lyricist the title song is the best with lyrics so profound that every line speaks volumes. One such being ‘Mujhe aasmati hai teri kami’.

Few other dialogues from the movie worth thinking about are:

Boyfriends na filmon ki tarah hote hai … kuch time pass toh kuch blockbusters

Rishtey ke alava aur bhi rishtey hote hai

Love teda hai … lekin us tede love mein bhi sukoon paana sirf kuch logon ko aata hai

Pyar mein junoon hai par dosti mein sukoon hai

Kisi ne kabhi aapko suddenly chaata mara hai … phaat … us chaante ko ishq kehte hai … aur woh chaanta aur zor se padta hai jab koi teesra aa jaata hai

Main kisi ki zaroorat nahi … khwaish banna chahti hoon

Aasaan hai kya aisi mohabbat karna … jiske badle mohabbat na mile

Mohabbat karna hamare bas mein nahi hai … us mohabbat se door chale jaana … woh hamare bas mein hai

Ek tarfa pyar ki taqat hi kuch aur hoti hai … auron ke rishton ki tarah yeh do logon mein nahi bat’ti … sirf mera haq hai ispe

Finally, the movie leaves you with the question, would you sacrifice the peace of friendship for the madness of love? Love can be tough. Can you handle it?

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Review: Two States

Is love enough to start off a happy life? Or better said in the ancient Hindi proverb “Jab miya biwi raazi tho kya karega kaazi!” (If the bride and groom agree then what can anyone do to stop them) Well the ‘kaazi’ plays a very important role in this movie 😉

 

This is the tag line the movie rests itself on. It is a movie that a south Asian audience can particularly appreciate because, we know…that just love between a boy and a girl is not enough! Chetan Bhagat’s semi-autobiographical story of how he tried to bridge the cultural divide between two families, as he sets out to marry his college sweetheart is the basic premise of the movie.

The movie reiterates how a south Asian marriage is not just a marriage between individuals but a marriage between families. It’s important for a bride’s parents to like the groom, vice versa and for the respective families to like each other too. The south Asian parents wield too much power in making the right choice for their sons or daughters and when this power is threatened in the form of the kids making their own decisions, it is taken as a defiance of authority.

The male protagonist Krish(Arjun Kapoor) and his counterpart Ananya(Alia Bhatt) too break away from the mold of arranged marriages and make a choice of being with each other. Only problem is that he is a Punjabi and she a Madrasi. So the two worlds collide, along with the people, feelings, customs, traditions and culture. Both do their part in bringing the worlds together but it’s not an easy task. The most endearing moment in the movie is Krish making his ‘intent-to-wed’ pitch to Ananya’s family in a restaurant. Very original! The movie exposes the various differences in cultures very neatly without stereotyping it too much or hurting the sentiments of any particular community. The message is sent across in a subtle and comedic manner that’s not so hard to accept.

The movie by itself, reminds you of the previous movie from the same production (Dharma productions) house ‘Hansee toh phansee’. The emotions in the movie are same and you do get a sense of Déjà vu as the reel unrolls. The editing slacks in some places, especially in the mid-parts of the first and second half. One would be tempted to press the fast forward button if it was being watched on DVD at home. The songs don’t add much to the movie and in some places seem like a distraction. Some go unnoticeable as they are played in the background. The most endearing song is the one picturized on Revathy for many reasons and you need to watch it to feel it! The story though seems under developed in certain parts, especially the track between Krish and his dad, or the problems between the Malhotra couple itself. There are quite a few loose strings in the screenplay.

About the cast, Arjun seems more like a brooding south Indian than a bubbling Punjabi, so the stereotype fails right there, especially since Alia is depicted as a fair, bubbly and strong girl. Arjun looks depressed and somber all through the movie. Alia walks away with all the accolades for her performance. The power performances of the movie also come from the parents of the bride and the groom. Amrita Singh particularly rocks it in a super ‘Mard’ role!

In a nutshell, the movie is like a yo-yo. Some good parts but just when you think its going good, the story turns bland and seems never ending and when you get too fidgety, it picks up and engrosses you again. Definitely worth a watch in a home theater but nothing more than that. You won’t be bored but it is not something that would stay with you after the credits start rolling.

The movie does leave you in two states of mind….like it? or not??!!

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