A hug can speak volumes. Especially when a well-guided camera slowly moves in to two people going through a mixture of emotions ranging from uncertainty to overwhelming love to the need to hold on forever. More so when Ranbir Kapoor almost rocks himself like a baby in a warm embrace.
Writer/director, Ayan Mukherjee knows how to orchestrate this wonderful moment in ‘Yeh Jawani Hai Deewani’. This simple scene makes up for an otherwise overcrowded plot full of some good, some contrived dialogues including the once famous Rooh Afza.
When Karan Johar, Ayan Mukherjee and Ranbir Kapoor first got together, they gave us a wonderful coming of age film, ”Wake up Sid”. Besides the warm and simple story, there were several interesting factors that reflected Ayan all the way. Like the unlikely pairing of Ranbir and Konkona in a fresh and endearingly simple, honest story.
With “Yeh Jawani hai Deewani, Ayan has has taken almost the same elements of love, friendship and growing up and now added several layers to each character with a double dose of Joheresque production values.
Konkona from ‘Wake Up Sid’ is now Naina (Deepika Padukone); the simple, good, levelheaded girl .She discovers how to have fun with Bunny aka Kabir (Ranbir) who is a wanderer at heart. Ranbir and his friend in ‘Wake up Sid’ had a lovely, bonding moment when the two have a scrap and later come together, laughing their heads off over an engagement ring.
In Yeh Jawani Hai Diwani, the bonding is so good that it touches you more than the romance. The credit goes partly to Aditya Roy Kapur for a fabulous performance and partly to a very well written scene in which the two friends come to blows and later hug.
The two friends, Abhi (ARK) and Bunny along with their third friend, Aditi (Kalki Koechlin) leave for a trek in Manali. Naina, who has grown up with her nose buried deep in books, joins them. In the midst of rollicking fun in the snow capped beauty and colorful gulal filled romance, she falls in love. Eight years later, it is Aditi’s wedding and the four meet again. The rest of the screenplay, surprisingly, moves into some serious territory. The conflict is relevant but comes across as somewhat forced.
Since the narrative is focused on Deepika’s point of view and keeps moving to the other two friends, Ranbir gets centrestage only in the song and dance scenes. One of them, is by now famous dance to “Ghagra’ with Madhuri Dixit who looks more alluring than ever. The sizzling chemistry between the two calls for another film altogether. Pritam’s ”Badtameez’ and ‘Balam Pichkari’ are typically top of the chart numbers, all written by the versatile Amitabh Bhattacharya.
It is no surprise that Ranbir excels in every emotional scene and plays his vagabond character with ease (a tattoo of ‘awara’ on his wrist shows off his great genes). However it is Deepika Padukone who continues to surprise and delight after her noticeable performance in Cocktail. Her dimpled charm is beautifully highlighted in several close ups. These incidentally gave rise to several gasps of admiration in the packed theatre.
Aditya Roy Kapur is on par with Ranbir, both in screen presence and acting. Kalki as a mad cap who hides her true feelings, is just perfect for the role. She charms, emotes and entertains effortlessly.
In one scene, that shows their essential conflict, Deepika and Ranbir debate over Mumbai and exotic international locales. Deepika says, “DDLJ and popcorn at Maratha Mandir.”
That’s going a bit overboard. So does Yeh Jawani hai Deewani.