Review - London Dreams: through a pleasant though long night

wogma rating: The keen should rent; else TV (?)
quick review:

There's drama. There are moments atypical of Hindi films. There's the regular Bolly-masala. It entertains and it engages but not for the entire length. Ultimately like many films longer than 2 hours it doesn't arrest you in your seats.



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Friends are forever or maybe they are not. Or maybe they become best of friends except for that thin line that still keeps them apart. Does being human mean taking care of yourself or does it mean giving yourself to one and all? Can a human be so selfish or so selfless? Both nauseating in their own way? Well, it takes all kinds to make this world. And that I guess makes it an interesting place to live in albeit insane. Yes. A Vipul Amrutlal Shah film made me think beyond what was going on, on screen. And this is, despite having a few of the quintessential Hindi film touches to it.

That's because it ALSO had broader non-standard and pleasantly surprising strokes. Example, there's no one event or line that transforms the good to evil or vice versa, the character is written in such a way that the transition is smooth. Another such stroke, which I thought made this entire film worth its while, was Arjun's (Ajay Devgn's) character. His traits established, the passion that drives him to his goal and maybe even to insanity. Whether or not he achieves his goal and/or insanity is for you to go and watch. And that's the beauty. The film maintains a dark-ish atmosphere where you know anything could happen and it's equally likely that the film won't end on a popular note. And that keeps the interest alive. Ajay, of course, makes and maintains the serious ambience through the film. The twitches and the way the eyes move to disclose what's on Arjun's mind are not to be missed.

But, then again it's a mainstream Hindi film and it keeps reminding you of that. For instance, almost all the other characters are pretty much flat. Including Manu (Salman Khan) and Priya (Asin). And the actors didn't do much with whatever little scope their characters had either. Salman Khan is his usual stuff. His comic timing is best at some of the really funny lines given to him. It's amazing how the man can do the same thing over and over and over and still have his fans cheering and hooting for him all through. Though in this one there are a few dashes of facial muscle movement here and there.

In a script that did so much with the male protagonist, it’s a shame that the lead woman was so etchily sketched. She could have been more involved. She could at the very least have not disappeared from one of the most crucial plot points in the film!

The show-down is a bit too much to swallow. And the climax came way too quickly and was abrupt. Yes, and I'm still complaining about its length. It's sad when a film is long and you still find something amiss.

Whatever the drawbacks of the film are in terms story or dialogues the improvement, in the entertainment-quotient of these two departments (of a Vipul Shah film) came as a pleasant surprise. And so did the aesthetics in terms of cinematography and sound design. Maybe just losing Akshay Kumar might have done the trick. Ok, sorry, couldn't resist that unwarranted dig.

It's a film that makes you want the hero to win and the anti-hero to not lose. You flinch when the latter is punished and want to reach out to him and tell him it's ok. This one also has a strong hard work vs. talent+charisma debate as a backdrop. But the drama goes on a tad too long. Long enough for you to notice the holes in the other departments. And there they lose us.

- meeta, a part of the audience

Parental Guidance:

  • Violence: None. One of the characters is a substance abuser.
  • Language: A few innuendoes here and there and a little bit of toilet humor.
  • Nudity & Sexual content: Skimpily clad women in bars and dance sequences.
  • Concept: That of friendship - what makes and breaks it.
  • General Look and Feel: Is nice and peppy without being too bright or away from reality.

Detailed Ratings (out of 5):

  • Direction: 3.5
  • Story: 3
  • Lead Actors: 2.5
  • Character Artists: 2.5
  • Dialogues: 3
  • Screenplay: 2
  • Music Director: 3
  • Lyrics: 3

London Dreams - Movie Details

London Dreams - Trailer

Comments (4)

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Going to see this tomorrow so will comment more then, but in the meantime: "etchily sketched" is a wonderful turn of phrase!


Hi Meetu, The Plot Summary looks eerily similar to Amadeus. Does the film take inspiration from there?

I have to pick one to watch, I think I'll go for Aladin.

Re:Asin's make-up and her overall look - I wonder how much of the blame for it goes to the film. She tends to ply on the paint too generously even at social dos (so I gather from photos/TV).


@Rahul so how did it go?

@Beth what did you think?

@Shuchi About Asin - oh really? didn't know that. but its really annoying.

@Shuchi @Raaj Amadues - well yeah. but then any professional jealousy plot will be like Amadeus. And am willing to place a bet not even close as a good film :)

@Rahul Really? I liked them while playing in the theater, but couldn't remember one after getting out.

@harsh really liked it that much, ha? and it would be great if you could reply to @Ramen 's question.


This is one of my most favourite movies, you can also share this movies lyrics which are at

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