Every once in a while Bollywood tends to churn out a movie which has the following ingredients:
It is relatable for the uber urbanite and filled with first world realities
It is very light on the mood (with maybe a couple of heavy and deep moments)
It is very much inspires you to maybe to one or two things in your life
It doesn’t have any of the usual bollywood ingredients about it like the super cop type fighting or the unnecessary ridiculous comedy
Dil Dhadakne Do is all of the above. Directed and written by Zoya Akhtar (Luck by chance and Zindagi Na Mile Gi Dobara) the movie follows the story of a an industrialist family, the Mehras, as they embark on a 10 day cruise journey along the Bosphorus in a celebration of their 30th wedding anniversary. The Mehras include one flirtatious and under stress businessman Kamal Mehra (Anil Kapoor), his meekly loyal wife Neelam (Shefali Shah), an ambitious yet unhappy in marriage daughter Ayesha (Priyanka Chopra) and the not so business ambitious and a little more carefree and thoroughly spoiled and professionally aimless Kabir (Ranveer Singh). Joining them on this cruise celebration are some of the other uber rich friends and family. And of course new and old love interests of the Mehra siblings – Farah the Carabet Dancer on the cruise (Anuskha Sharma) and Sunny Gil as Ayesha’s ex lover and Kamal’s manager’s son (Farhan Akhtar). The family is shown to be thoroughly dysfunctional with a lot of under the rug and don’t talk about certain things sort of moments along with that ‘modern age’ old argument of how things have always been a certain way and how they now should be. A rift in thought between the old and the young generations in the is shown from varying angles in the movie. The conflicts in the film are authentic and they’re rendered with genuine emotion. Rich people have problems too, and Dil Dhadakne Do proves that if written and directed well, it is possible for a First World film to connect with Third World audiences. And a special mention of course for the Mehra’s dog, Pluto who is our narrative host throughout the movie and definitely looks the most sane personality on board.
The film also looks terrific, thanks to Akhtar’s grasp on aesthetics, Carlos Catalan’s camerawork, and of course the gorgeous Turkish locales. Shankar Ehsaan Loy’s songs are fun too, the highlight of which is an incredibly-shot single take number that culminates into the whole gang converging at the bar. Ranveer Singh and Anushka Sharma, who plays his crush, get to dance to a number reminiscent of the practice regimen from Silver Linings Playbook.
Anchoring the film is Anil Kapoor in the performance of his career – he’s incredibly funny whether he’s irritable or just plain nasty. The look of incredulity on his face when things fall apart around him is priceless. Shefali Shah almost matches Kapoor in both hilarity and drama, while Singh is his usual goofy self and Chopra is terrific in an emotional scene. Rahul Bose plays Chopra’s husband and he makes a decent impression as does Sharma in her extended cameo of a role. A mild downer in the film is Farhan Akhtar because he once again plays Farhan Akhtar. There’s no change in his mannerisms and the brief appearance of a beard isn’t much by way of a useful addition.
All in all a really good watch and not to be missed for the movie, the comedy, the acting and yes even the songs! Best number we would say is ‘Galla Goodiyan’.