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Jab Tak Hai Jaan - Review

Jab Tak Hai Jaan

wogma rating: Watch when on TV (?)
quick review:

Jab Tak Hai Jaan is a romance that does woo you at times you least expect it. But for most parts it doesn't let you forget that it is after all a film.

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[Poster for Jab Tak Hai Jaan]

People do crazy things when they have faith - whether that belief lies in love, God or anything in between. And we shouldn't be surprised to have Yash Chopra explore this theme, when he has picked romance as the genre. Unfortunately though, only few times in the film do you want to change your belief that this is only a film, far far from reality. Very few.

Sure, it might not have aimed at being real at all. But it doesn't sweep you off your feet in a fairy tale like manner either. In my mind, it will stay as the last film made by the man who made films that had characters who were human, who had emotions like you and me, who had stories that absorbed me. Nothing more, and fortunately nothing less. Only unfortunately, this time around I have seen them too many times on screen. And they are telling me their story instead of playing it out.

Shah Rukh Khan doesn't let you forget that he is Shah Rukh Khan. So much so that you can predict the expression he is going to have as a reaction to whatever just happened. Yet, the way he looks at his woman is something only the rare woman cannot be charmed by. The rest of his body language though is as annoying as it has been in almost every other film.

Katrina Kaif too, doesn't allow you to think of her as a woman of great faith, like her character is supposed to be. Fortunately for her though, the rest of her character is something that we associate with her instantly, London-bred desi who has it all. Though that works for the casting bit, it doesn't say much about her acting skills or that of the writer's creativity.

Anushka Sharma plays her characters bit of chirpiness and forced seriousness. But then again her character must be the most superficially written. More like a representative of today's youth. More like a stereotype of today's youth – shallow, self-centered people waiting to be taken into the depths that real life is about.

You are spoonfed adjectives that you are expected to associate each character with. Samar (Shah Rukh Khan) is the stud, looks-at-death-in-its-eye, poet, romantic. Akira (Anushka Sharma) is the bubbly, exuberant, let-the-devil-care, woman of 2012. Meera (Katrina Kaif) is the enigmatic, guarded waiting-to-be-swept-off-her-feet, whose faith in her God is as unshakable as her namesake.

After this initial exposure, you are waiting to be completely sucked into their stories. But it doesn't happen. It shows promise every once in a while, but doesn't come through. The story itself is more or less predictable. And the theme of undying love is dealt with pretty much the same way.

Yet, it has a few moments of charm, a few moments of genuine chemistry between the characters. It has a couple of the quintessential Yash Chopra woman-to-woman scenes that I so admire, even if they are nowhere close to the ones in Silsila or Lamhe. Yet, it has the 'aawww' for the romantically-inclined. It has moments that make you want to fall in love for the first time , all over again. But they aren't taken through to the climax. I must say though that the runtime at 3 hours didn't bother me. That is a huge plus considering I start getting fidgety around minute 120.

One thing that bothers me though is that, in their attempt at making a story that rings true in today's time, the young and hip seem to define a lot of their love in terms of physical attraction. The sexual tension for those brief moments (before the camera angles and music all go melodramatic on us) while done well, seem pivotal to the relationships. This seems a little out of character in the film.

A bit of that might be brought back into balance because the film does seem to address the youth of today. It is indeed telling us all to believe. To believe in love. To have hope that it will come to everyone, when the time comes.

Yet, the only driving force behind recommending this film is as a tribute to the director. Something, I'd watch for the sake of completeness - that I have tried to see all his films. But, I'd still go back to a Trishul or a Deewar or a Kala Pathar or a ...

- meetu, a part of the audience

Parental Guidance:

  • Violence: A couple of accidents.
  • Language: Clean except for some talk about kisses and sex.
  • Nudity & Sexual content: A few kisses and a couple of making out scenes.
  • Concept: Undying love
  • General Look and Feel: Well shot and lively, even though it is actually about sulking lovers.

Detailed Ratings (out of 5):

  • Direction: 2.5
  • Story: 1.5
  • Lead Actors: 2
  • Character Artists: 4
  • Dialogues: 2.5
  • Screenplay: 3
  • Music Director: 2.5
  • Lyrics: 2.5

Jab Tak Hai Jaan - Movie Details

Jab Tak Hai Jaan - Trailer

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Comments (10)

Rachit Gupta:

In your parlance... Even the keen wait for DVD... I was pleasantly surprised to see Anushka Sharma outshine both SRK and Katrina in the movie... The only time the movie engages you when she is on screen and she does light up the 70mm... For the two other leads they can do such roles in their sleep... SRK as the brooding lover and Kat as the UK bred who ultimately falls for a desi... I guess other reviewers are being kind to the movie since its his last... There is nothing new in the movie but visually it strikes a very elegant pose... Just wish there was more substance to the story!!!

meetu:

Yep @Rachit! I agree :D

Simy Mathews:

Spot on with the review Meeta. Anushka was the saving grace for me and SRK of course wins me over with his brooding looks every time. I just do not get Katrina acting as UK bred with her American accent! No chemistry with SRK whatsoever, as wooden as always, cannot figure out the fuss over her. But yes I went to watch it so that I could see Yash Chopra's swan song so to speak!

guddu:

SRK the icon and king of romance steals the whole show. Holy God give him more years so that he continues to entertain us. Meetu your entitled to give fair review and unbiased , we as audience sometimes get so much immerssed in the character that we overlook the fundamentals of filmaking. This was one such film . I encountered nostalgia while watching this film, i was reminded of the by gone romantic films which Shah Rukh immortalised with his charismatic performance and dialogue. Once again the King earns the respect and loyality from his fans with this film. As for the ladies i can hardky think of comparing them with Kajol and Rani,. .

meetu:

@Simy Thanks! However, I can't say the same when he acts as if he's angry or wants to kiss... :P Just when he wants to convince his woman, he loves her...that look! That one is what I guess makes him a romantic hero...

@guddu well, I don't know about that really...

Suman:

Direction: 2
Story: 1.5
Lead Actors: 2.5
Character Artists: 2.5

Dialogues: 2.5
Screenplay: 2
Music Director: 0.5
Lyrics: 2

Story line and screenplay was weak as compared to new generation movies. SRK looked ODD with beautiful KAT. Katrina's acting needs to improve but i guess she doesn't need that because of her beauty. Anushka Sharma was good. The first 20 minutes of the movie was ok but fails to impress after that. Below average music not up to par with yshji movie.

meetu:

@Suman yes, yes and yes :D

Simy Mathews:

Meeta, I waited for 2 decades to watch SRK do an on-screen kiss and then he finally goes and kisses that plastic Katrina, what a waste!!! How I wish it was Anushka he had kissed on screen.....ah well, hopefully this will be the beginning of many more 'the script demands it' on screen kisses from SRK :-)

Guddu:

Stop saying katrina "plastic" , she performed very convincing and never looked effortless. Atleast better than the skimpy clad anushka who wears tinest shorts and shortest tops when its winter in jammu. :P

meetu:

@Simy I didn't think it quiet worked. He seemed to stiff when it looked like he wanted to kiss. Not to mention, the direction didn't help. All that slow-mo, those long pauses and the dialogue-baazi surrounding the kiss(es) just killed the spontaneity. I have little hope of seeing a decent kiss from any of our "stars"!

@Guddu Well, Katrina was in short dresses in the winters of London. But, anyway, that is the director's call, hardly the artists'. And for me Katrina was just the usual, nothing close to what she can do like say she did in ZNMD or even in Mere Brother ki Dulhan.

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