Looks like Karan Johar has gotten into this belief that anything he shoots will succeed at the box office. It is hard to believe that this movie is from the same guy who gave movies like "Kuch Kuch Hota Hai", "Kabhi Kush Kabhi Gham" and "Kal Ho Naa Ho". Though family drama is not my favourite genre of movies, these movies made me sit watch them and i am sure i will watch them again. But with Karan's latest offering, i had to fight the sleep that was gradually building within.
To say it in simple terms, the movie is bad. It is boringly long. I agree that the director has assembled a great cast. But seeing frame after frame of their acting skills is not gonna be really entertaining. Speaking of the actors, there are some great performances. The usual Shah Rukh Khan (Dev), whose hamming skills seem to be increasing movie after movie. In this one, he is visibly old as well and seeing his contortions isnt entertaining anymore. Prety (Rhea) as Dev's wife has come out with a commendable performance. Her role is subdued, but has strong characterisation and Preity has done well. Next on line is Rani (Maya), who has got the weakest of all roles and fails inspite of her hardest efforts. Abhishek (Rishi) is Maya's husband and the stand out performer in the movie. His role goes through the entire spectrum of emotions and Abhishek has proved that he capable to handle such roles. Apart from the two couple, Amitabh (Why Big B??? Why?!?!) and Kiron Kher occupy some screen space.
The cast is strong. It is the screen play which is week. This is a story of extra marital affairs, fine. This is a movie which attempts at glorifying it. But for that to succeed the non indulging part of each pair has to be bad or unwilling in some way. This is where Karan had failed miserably. With the Dev-Rhea pair, Rhea is extremely likeable. She gives more time to work than her miserable, loser husband. As Rhea says in the movie, she becomes the man of the house because the man is a failure. Dev on the other hand is an egoist. He cannot see the female succeed and that is his problem. I am sure that no one would complain Rhea for the state of affairs in their house. With the Rishi-Maya pair, I cannot point a finger at Rishi. He tries so hard to win her love. It is Maya who is unresponsive. As Rishi says, she never married him. She made a compromise and was always looking a way out of it.
So when the director tries to convince the audience that Dev and Maya are "incomplete" and are only trying to fill the gaps in their individual life, he miserably fails. And with that the movie fails. I got this feeling when Dev and Maya meets in the Railway Station and proposes their love to each other and hence it becomes one long bore from then on when the director take us through the romantic journey of this pair. Add to it the length of the movie and it was a painful bore.
The movie works in parts. There are some good scenes, some comedy scenes which bring out a laugh, the cool dance movements of Abhishek, Rani's expressions, the music, the cinematography (New York's suc a beautiful place anyway) , Big B's babes – there are things to look forward in the movie. The end of the movie was a pleasant deviation from what's expected of Karan or any other Indian director. But as mentioned earlier, the core of the movie is flawed. I only hope this is a minor aberration from the otherwise good director. A bold decision to try a bold theme. But Karan's failed.