Ranbir Kapoor, Anushka Sharma, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, Fawad Khan
How to win the heart of Bollywood aficionados? Simple, by paying a tribute to Bollywood in your film.
Must say, Karan Johar has played his cards well this time around. Right from Noor Jahan, RD Burman, Mohammed Rafi songs, to the racy tracks of 80s, to the ‘Baby Doll’ number, from references to classics like Mother India and Sholay, to Hum Aapke Hain Koun..! to Kuch Kuch Hota Hai and actually recreating the ‘Tere Mere Hothon Pe Mithe Mithe Geet Mitwa’ from Chandni à la Yash Chopra style… ADHM celebrates every era of Bollywood along with narrating an earnest story of unrequited love and friendship in a typical Karan Johar style.
So let’s start with our filmy hero — Ayan (Ranbir Kapoor), a famous singer, opening his heart out in an interview. Seconds later, we are in flashback, to the time when Ayan was an MBA student in London, who happens to meet the feisty and extremely filmy — Alizeh (Anushka Sharma) in a pub. They decide for a quick make-out session. However, Ayan is a bad kisser according to Alizeh, so instead of ending up in the bed they end up on the rooftop of a building talking about their lives and laying the foundation of a very Bollywood driven friendship.
But as our Hindi films have preached over the years — Ek ladka aur ek ladki kabhi dost nahin ho sakte hai, the predictable happens. Ayan falls in love with Alizeh; however, Alizeh’s heart is with Ali (Fawad Khan) and thus the saga of unrequited love begins.
A heartbroken Ayan finds solace in the gorgeous Saba (Aishwarya Rai Bachchan), a divorcee and her beautiful shyaaris. All seems to move forward well, until Alizeh walks back in his life.
While the plot of this Karan Johar film may not be absolutely out of this world, the director skillfully holds the film together through beautifully written Urdu dialogues like — ‘Darre hue log aksar alfazon ke peeche chupte hai’, witty one-liners with constant reference to Bollywood, a soul-stirring soundtrack, well-crafted sequences, and remarkable performances.
Ranbir Kapoor is back to regain his throne in the industry as he effortlessly emotes every single sentiment of his character. He makes you laugh; he makes your cry and simply tugs at your heartstrings with his endearing act and in the process also reminds you of his granddad Raj Kapoor. Ranbir is a delight to watch onscreen.
His co-star, Anushka Sharma is equally brilliant as the cool, strong-willed, and straightforward Bollywood buff Alizeh. Ayan and her banter throughout the film is amusing.
Aishwarya Rai Bachchan though comes almost towards the end of the first half, delivers a fine performance. As the poised and beautiful Saba she is perfection personified. And yeah, the lady still continues to slay with her eyes. Fawad hardly has any screen time, wonder why MNS made such a big ruckus about his presence in the film.
As mentioned earlier the soundtrack of the film is truly the strength of ADHM. Starting with young energetic numbers like — ‘The Breakup Song’ it moves to more deeper and poignant songs as the film changes it tone from a frothy tale to a dramatic saga of love and friendship. The best moment of the film is when from the fun cutiepie number the movie immediately moves to the heart wrenching number Channa Mereya indicating the change in the tone of the film. A special pat on Karan’s back for this one. However, you do wish the director delved deeper into the emotions of his characters. While you do sympathize with Ayan, you fail to connect with his pain. The same can be said about Ash’s character.
However, on the whole, he has packed a good light-hearted film that’s sure to brighten our festive mood.