Films | OK Jaanu- Movie Review

OK Jaanu- Movie Review

Posted by Vivek on January 16, 2017 | No Comments

FILM – OK Jaanu

PRODUCER – Hiroo Johar, Karan Johar, Apoorva Mehta, Mani Ratnam

DIRECTOR – Shaad Ali

WRITER – Mani Ratnam (story and screenplay), Gulzar (dialogue)

CAST – Shraddha Kapoor, Aditya Roy Kapoor, Naseeruddin Shah, Kitu Gidwani, Leela Samson

MUSIC – A. R. Rahman

Ok Jaanu is a Hindi remake of ‘O Kadhal Kanmani’, written and directed by Mani Rathnam. Shaad Ali, his protégé takes over the mantle here, and like he did with Saathiya, replicates the Tamil version without much change.

The film rides on the very in-vogue theme of commitment phobic millennial couples exploring love and commitment and their stumbles along the way. Except that there are no stumbles here, just things that happen and unhappen by themselves.

Adi (Aditya Roy Kapoor) and Tara (Shraddha Kapoor) meet randomly and strike up a rapport. They meet more often, flirt, dance, sing, and catch and leave a million trains and taxis as love happens to them. Both are planning careers abroad and see no room for any relationship in the future. They move into a live-in, to make the most of the little time they have together. The landlords, (Naseeruddin Shah) and (Leela Samson) are a paragon of old-world, stoic and committed love, kept as a foil for Adi and Tara to understand love, the speakers and narrators of the story.

So far so good, but there seems to be no point of the whole exercise. There is little exploration of the questions in Adi and Tara’s minds leave alone the journey to their resolutions. All we know is they are finding it difficult to let go but they knew this already, this is not the first time either of them has fallen in love. So what is different this time? We never get to know. And somewhere it is in this tiding over of emotional and psychological details the entire film is lost because there is nothing else to supplicate it. There isn’t enough passion for their love to be unquestionable, there isn’t enough angst for it to be do or die either. The fact that they are millenials informs us of more things than the film does with this context of its characters. Also, Mumbai as a city never playing a role in their lives except as a location seems convenient at best.

It is not only this that makes the film lacklustre. Aditya Roy Kapoor and Shraddha Kapoor lack the spark to light up the characters, in their individual performances and in their chemistry. The dialogues, by Gulzarsaab, appear feeble too, unable to liven up or touch any nerve. Naseeruddin Shah is as alive as ever onscreen but the effort to uplift a weakly written character shows. Leela Samson’s performance leaves one wondering at the guidance she got from the director more than her own performance.

The last big name in the ensemble (Karan Johar is a co-producer) is of A. R. Rahman whose prowess is unable to boost the film either. The colours of the dance number ‘Humma Humma’ are beautiful but the rap by Badshah is not. Nor are any of the other numbers sticky enough to imbue a modern-day romance into the proceedings that is not popcorn and coca cola fizz.

For popcorn and coke, however, it works.

Fatema Kagalwala

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