Fenil and Bollywood

Posts Tagged ‘Socha Na Tha

Vivek spills the beans on his feelings on ex Aishwarya Rai and the controversial face off with Salman Khan
BOMBAY TIMES; September 10, 2009

From left to right: Sreesanth, Vivek Oberoi, Farah Khan and Riteish Deshmukh

This week’s episode of Tere Mere Beach Mein will see Ritiesh Deshmukh, Sreesanth and Vivek Oberoi confessing the decisions they took that turned out to be disasters. Not surprising this episode’s theme is Socha Na Tha.

“Vivek-bashing had become a trend,” Vivek told Farah on the show. He further went on to say, “I remember one day when I returned after my shoot and saw my mom crying. I asked ‘Kya hua’. She replied, ‘Till when will they keep hitting at my son. I’m a mother, I too feel bad!’ And then she added, ‘I am proud of you. Had it been anyone else by now, he would be in a mental hospital or taking drugs or become an alcoholic.’”

Vivek spoke about the controversial press conference he called years ago against Salman when he was dating Aishwarya Rai Bachchan. Finally when Farah asked him ‘Kya aap poori tarah se unhe bhoola chuke hain?’ referring to Aishwarya, Vivek gave a confident reply in the positive.

Sreesanth and Riteish Deshmukh’s presence added to the drama on the show. Ritiesh did comment on the Ram Gopal Varma incident that caused damage to his father Vilasrao Deshmukh’s political career. “The media said that my father had invited Ram Gopal Varma, but that’s not true. There is not one shot of the two talking to each other and my father didn’t even know him. Till date, they have still not been introduced to each other!” he said. And Sreesanth of course, when asked about the slap (Harbhajan had slapped him during an IPL match), gave a reply in his own flamboyant style!

Love Aaj Kal2

Very rarely do you come across a film which fulfills all your expectations and in fact, provides more than expected. This year, however, we were mostly bombarded with some pathetic flicks. But behold as Love Aaj Kal has arrived! The film sees love and relationships in a new light but what works big time is its terrific execution and smart storytelling. Love Aaj Kal is surely one of the most refreshing romantic flicks to come out of Bollywood!

The story of the movie: Jai (Saif Ali Khan) and Meera (Deepika Padukone) is a modern-day couple based in London. They are always together but are clueless whether they can be categorized as ‘boyfriend-girlfriend’! Meera gets an opportunity to move to Delhi which she doesn’t want to miss while Jai is soon going to be at San Francisco. Jai and Meera conclude that their long-distance relationship won’t work and thus, decide to break-up (happily). At this point, Jai comes across veteran Veer Singh (Rishi Kapoor) who is shocked to see how Jai treats relationships and break them so easily. He is of the view that the present generation can’t understand love. Love is that trap in which he got entangled 4 decades back when he was the dashing and cool Delhiite Veer (played by Saif again) and when he came across Harleen Kaur (Giselle Monteiro). Jai laughs at Veer as to how he had travelled thousand kilometers from Delhi to Calcutta just to catch a glimpse of Harleen.

Jai-MeeraVeer-Harleen-both these ‘love stories’ were poles apart and of different generations. But love is the same as it was 4 decades back. Jai soon realizes that he’s having the same feeling and experience that Veer must have gone through when he fell in love with Harleen!

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The opening scenes give a strong indication that Love Aaj Kal is a different and unique film. During the opening credits, the glimpse of the scenes to follow is shown but yet, you won’t be able to guess what’s going to happen in the film! The execution and editing really works wonders in this film!

The first half of this film is very interesting and surprising. The way the couple break-up was indeed hilarious! Jai and Meera keeping in touch with all modern-day means of communication (sms, call, internet, Mobile Internet) makes you smile. And the eternal Jai-Harleen cute love story also flashes a smile on one’s face, albeit for a different reason!

Telling two stories that run parallel in a film is not easy but Imtiaz executes them with élan and even intersects them wonderfully, a la Rang De Basanti style! Also, the film, especially in the 2nd half reminds one of Jaane Tu…Ya Jaane Na.

The film gets slow and drags at few places in the 2nd half. But the final 30 minutes compensates for the cons. The film manages to show a true picture of today’s confused individuals who fail to think rationally before taking big decisions and denounce and detest love.

When it comes to performances, each one is brilliant in their place. Saif Ali Khan shines wonderfully and manages to come up with one of the outstanding performances of his career. He had two diverse roles in the film and he performed both of them perfectly. It was a treat to see Saif as Jai getting confused, irritated, sad, shocked-all at once in a couple of sequences. At the same time, he looked like a convincing Sikh and was extremely likeable as Veer Singh too. It’s great to see Saif in another modern and fresh love story (after Salaam|Namaste) and this time, he scores as the producer too. He’s definitely on a roll!

Deepika Padukone was simply outstanding and gives a charming performance. Her brilliant job will surely put an end to all speculation regarding why Kareena was not casted in her place. Deepika was perfect for her role and she and Saif look excellent together. Love Aaj Kal would surely be another feather in her cap. Great going, Deepika!

Rishi Kapoor also manages to impress as much as Saif and Deepika. Everyone will surely love him in the still-young-at-heart role. After Luck By Chance, this is surely another brilliant performance from this actor. The one who enacted the role of Harleen is actually a Brazlian, Giselle Monteiro. Yet, she is likeable as the Punjabi kudi of the 60s. Only someone like Imtiaz Ali can extract such fine desi performance from a firangi! Rahul Khanna is as usual charming. It’ll be great if he gets the role of protagonist too! Neetu Kapoor comes in unexpectedly! Raj Zutshi and others were okay.

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One can argue that songs weren’t necessary in the film. Quite true, since many songs crop up unexpectedly and the film could have been a romantic songless flick! However, although songs at several places weren’t necessary, it doesn’t bore or put a brake on the narrative. And the songs itself are so good that one doesn’t mind! Pritam scores a sixer with this album and is surely one of his best compositions. Also, songs are also very well picturised, esp ‘Mein Kya Hoon’. It was just outstanding and also impactful. ‘Ajj Din Chadeya’, the best song of the film in my view, also brings a smile on one’s face, even though only the initial part of the song is played in the film. Rest of the songs, ‘Twist’, ‘Dooriyaan’, ‘Chor Bazaari’ and ‘Thoda Thoda Pyaar’ are brilliant too!

Irshad Kamil’s lyrics also deserve a special mention. The way he has used some unusual words in songs is extraordinary. For instance, in Chor Bazaari, the word ‘ghatna’, which is never before heard in any song before, is used here!

N Natarajan Subramaniam’s cinematography was flawless. It’s great to see the lensman didn’t show the popular landmarks of the city in which film is shot. For instance, in scenes of London, not even a single scene or frame show Tower Bridge, Piccadilly Circus, Trafalgar Square or any other popular London landmark. Similarly, Red Fort and India Gate are missing in the Delhi sequences! It is little things like these that make Love Aaj Kal special!

Salim-Sulaiman’s background score, as expected, was top-notch. Aarti Bajaj’s editing was sharp, slick and brilliant. Watch the film and you’ll get my point! Production design was marvelous and eye-catching, especially in the sepia coloured 60’s scenes!

Finally, Imtiaz Ali, the writer and director, comes out with flying colours! His debut film, Socha Na Tha flopped but it was noticed and appreciated by moviegoers. His second offering, Jab We Met, succeeded across the country. And now with his third flick, he has surely been hailed as the one of the finest directors of our country. The way he treated both the diverse stories and found out striking similarities is worth appreciating and extra ordinary! Also, it’s fabulous to see Imtiaz comparing Calcutta and San Francisco. Both the cities have a tram network and if SF has the iconic Golden Gate Bridge, Calcutta have the rustic Howrah Bridge! Hats off Imtiaz for your wonderful effort!

Some of the best scenes of the film:

  1. All songs (well shot and picturised)
  2. Jai and Meera’s break-up
  3. Jai and Veer Singh’s conversations (damn interesting!)
  4. Jai and Meera at the airport
  5. All scenes of Veer-Harleen’s love story
  6. Drunk Jai escorting drunk Meera to her home
  7. The New Year’s eve at Delhi
  8. The marriage
  9. The last 30 mins, including the SF scenes!

On the whole, Love Aaj Kal is a very interesting take on the modern relationships and surely emerges as one of the best films of the year. Performances, songs, cinematography rocks but it is Imtiaz Ali’s touch which works wonders! Highly recommended!

My rating-**** ½ out of 5!

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An irked Deepika reacts to constant references of Kareena not being in Love Aaj Kal; says Imtiaz wanted her for the part long before he worked with Kareena in Jab We Met
By Subhash K Jha (MUMBAI MIRROR; July 14, 2009)


Deepika Padukone and Saif Ali Khan

Although Saif Ali Khan’s first home production, Love Aaj Kal, stars Deepika Padukone opposite Saif, it is Kareena Kapoor who’s constantly been talked about. Strangely, it’s not because Kareena has anything to do with the film but because she’s not in the film.

This constant reference to a Rebecca-like presence in Love Aaj Kal has irked Deepika. She has apparently been wondering to her friends if Love Aaj Kal should be dedicated to Kareena.

Confirming the news, Deepika said, “This must be the first film in the history of cinema where a leading lady is being talked about so much for not being in the film. No, I’m not annoyed by these never-ending references to Kareena. When people see the film I know they’ll come out talking about me and my performance. Director Imtiaz Ali was very sure he wanted only me in the film.”

To elaborate her point further, Deepika lets out a secret, “Imtiaz was so sure that he wanted me for the part that he had offered me Love Aaj Kal even before my first film, Om Shanti Om, was released. Even before seeing me on screen, he knew that I was right for the role. So there was no question of any other actress being in the film.”

Imtiaz Ali

Deepika’s subtext is loud and clear. Imtiaz discovered her potential long before he discovered Kareena for Jab We Met. “I wanted to work with Imtiaz when I saw his first film Socha Na Tha. As this wide-eyed teenager, I remember seeing the film and wondering who the director was. I remember many years ago when I was a model, Imtiaz had offered me a film. At that time I wasn’t ready for an acting career. In fact when I had told him I wasn’t ready to join films, Imtiaz had said, ‘When you’re ready let me know’. He kept his promise. That’s how I got Love Aaj Kal. So now I’m not affected by people talking more about Kareena than me,” she said.

What about her producer-cum-co-star Saif’s on-record wistful yearnings for Kareena’s presence in Love Aaj Kal?

Deepika said, “Considering Saif is in a relationship with Kareena, isn’t it understandable if he wanted Kareena in Love Aaj Kal? They’ve worked together in the past. And I’m sure he wants to work with her in his home production. As for Kareena, if I was in her place I’d feel the same way. Don’t I want to work with Ranbir?”

After he failed to make Rockstar with John Abraham in 2006, Imtiaz Ali plans to revive the film with Ranbir Kapoor
By Kunal M Shah (MUMBAI MIRROR; June 10, 2009)

Imtiaz Ali

Ranbir Kapoor

After shuffling the dates of his film Rockstar for three years, Imtiaz Ali has finally decided to make the film with Ranbir Kapoor. The film was earlier launched in 2006 with John Abraham, but it was shelved immediately.

Giving us a chronological record of events, a source said, “Imtiaz wanted to make Rockstar with John immediately after Socha Na Tha, which released in March 2005. He had even put one of his films titled Geet on hold for Rockstar. He also had several sessions with Rockstar’s music director AR Rahman, who had composed a few songs for the film. The film was to be produced by UTV Motion Pictures. However, the film failed to materialise. Imtiaz then planned to make a film with Akshay Kumar, which too didn’t work out. Meanwhile, Geet, which was earlier to be made with Bobby Deol and Preity Zinta, was remade as Jab We Met with Shahid Kapur and Kareena Kapoor. After Jab We Met released in 2007, Imtiaz planned to make a film with Eros starring Hrithik Roshan which is still under consideration. After these unsuccessful attempts, Imtiaz has now finally decided to revive Rockstar with Astavinayak.”

Chief creative officer of UTV Rampage Motion Pictures, Ram Mirchandani agreed that they had earlier planned to make Rockstar in 2006. “We were working with Imtiaz Ali on the film, but unfortunately it didn’t work out at that time for various reasons.”

Commenting on reviving the film with Ranbir, Imtiaz said, “I met Ranbir and we discussed the possibility of working together. However, we have not zeroed in on any subject just as I haven’t done with Hrithik either.”

Ranbir said, “Not true. I am only doing Rajniti, Rocket Singh and Siddharth Anand’s next. I have not signed any other film.”

The official spokesperson of Astavinayak said, “Yes, we have signed Imtiaz Ali for our next project, talks are on with actors and it’s too early to say more.”

Imtiaz Ali, even after the hugely successful Jab We Met, remains the small-town boy he used to be, preferring to zip around in public transport
By Indu Mirani (MUMBAI MIRROR; April 25, 2009)
They not only show their films to each other but best buddies Anurag Kashyap and Imtiaz Ali, we find, even share a passion for public transport. Both directors, currently firmly entrenched in Bollywood’s club class, prefer to travel by autos, buses and trains.

While Anurag calls this his contribution to reducing his carbon foot-print, Imtiaz’s preference for janta class is surprising given that after the success of Jab We Met, he bought a BMW no less. “It’s too much to have to figure out what time the driver has to be let off and how much petrol is in the car, with autos I can just zip around the city,” he mumbles. Moreover, Ali, who is wrapping up his Saif Ali Khan-Deepika Padukone-starrer Love Aaj Kal, says he bought the beemer not for himself but as a gift for his wife. “I just wanted to in some way, pay homage or acknowledge my wife’s role and support of my career. She really had this thing about a BMW,” says the dishy director.

Do we hear a hundred hearts shattering?

So does he have strange encounters when people recognise him when he’s travelling? “A lot of girls have come and said that it seems as though Jab We Met is their story, and many others have said that they have been invigorated with some kind of hope because of the way things happen in Jab We Met but really most of the time I’m just too lost in my own world to notice what’s happening around me,” says the director who rubbishes talk that he has signed Hrithik Roshan for his next film. “Only when I decide which of my scripts I want to make, will I be able to zero in on the actor for it. Yes, Hrithik and I did meet, but that’s it.”