Cocktail is the good girl, bad girl and silly boy mix that starts off with a nice, pleasant high but gets mixed up, leaving a hangover. An interesting ‘it's complicated’ premise turns more melodramatic than Raj Kapoor’s Sangam.
At one point, Gautam (Saif) tells Veronica (Deepika), “You love me, I love her.” Except that Gautam and Veronica were together before he fell for Meera, Veronica’s best friend. Gautam is the typical flirt who is introduced, disgustingly, almost turning upside down, to look up a skirt. Veronica is seen, letting her wild, streaked hair loose on the dance floor with every man in sight. The twin characters, who mirror each other, get together despite Meera pointing out to Veronica that Gautam is quite a pig. Little does she know that she too will fall for the good looking animal. The best friends who incidentally are much more fun to watch, than their romantic capers with their lover, are now in the proverbial, hopeless tangle.
Homi Adajania, the director, made a completely different debut six years ago with an outstanding thriller, ”Being Cyrus”. This time, he has skillfully directed a complicated script by Imtiaz Ali and Sajid Ali. Like Imitiaz’s previous film, ‘Jab We Met’, the characters are confused and heavily clichéd yet fun to watch. The screenplay begins beautifully as it explores friendship and love’s complications until it gets into melodrama and conventional, safe territory in the latter half. Like ‘Rockstar’, while the pain and pathos of love is conveyed very effectively, it doesn’t quite merit the heroine with any adorable characteristics that justify such passion. The dialogues are good, ranging from funny to emotional, making the two and a half hour long movie, entertaining enough to sit through.
While women's characters don’t go beyond the stereotype of the good girl and the bad girl, with more clothes and long straight hair symbolic of the angelic and vice versa, Saif’s character moves from the flirt to the confused who is willing to do anything the women say. With a better layering, much could have been done with the interesting though borrowed premise of Vicky Cristina Barcelona, had it not moved into safer, predictable, zones. There are loose ends which don’t explain Hooda’s character and plot at all.
Pritam’s music simply rocks, especially the foot tapping number “tum hi ho bandhu..” written by Irshaad Kamil. “Yaaran alvida.. also penned by Irshaad touches a deep chord with lines ‘ Marz be hai deti,Chain bhi hai deti, Dard bhi hai deti,Jaan bhi hai leti Yaariyaan…’ .Fabulous cinematography along with the music, transports one into the celluloid world, quite effortlessly.
Deepika Padukone puts in her most convincing performance till now, as a vivacious but lonely, messed up girl. Saif does his usual act of goofing around, pretty well and even looks his best despite being noticeably old for his role. Diana Penty, charms with her large doe eyed look in her debut role as a simple, next door girl. Dimple Kapadia, despite a very short appearance, is delightful as the mom who catches her son romping in lingerie and lipstick, with two women. Boman Irani as the supportive uncle is okay and Randeep Hooda makes his brief presence felt as the nasty husband.
Worth a watch for some lovely moments if you don’t mind the threesome, tear some, tiresome complication.