Director by: Shaad Ali Producer by: Aditya Chopra Starring: Abhishek Bachchan, Preity Zinta, Bobby Deol, Lara Dutta Music Dir: Shankar Ehsaan Loy [Watch Songs]
Blunder! High-profile promotion, glossy promos, bankable star cast, hip-shaking thunderous music, exotic foreign locations and loads of expectations! This is what 'Jhoom Barabar Jhoom' is all about. What you get is huge disappointment in the end? How can a director of 'Saathiya' and 'Bunty Aur Babli' falter so miserably as a storyteller? Why do skilled actors like Abhishek Bachchan, Preity Zinta, Lara Dutta, and Bobby Deol fall for such a messy script? Can high production values save a film from disaster? Why Big B was wasted as cameo in the film? Finally, why the film was titled 'Jhoom Barabar Jhoom'? These questions may be haunting every viewer after witnessing the waterloo of disasters packed in a misadventure called 'Jhoom Barabar Jhoom' by Yashraj Films.
To summarize what 'Jhoom Barabar Jhoom' has to deliver from its leading stars - Abhishek's ham, Preity's drools, Lara's screams and Bobby's grimaces in its two and a half hour run. The film comes as a chaotic musical saga with slapdash screenplay, average performances, insipid scripting but melodious music (the only surprise!).
Shaad Ali Saagal showed his nerves while carrying the bandwagon of a big star cast as the film loses its focus on the characters in almost every frame. It fails to form the desired concoction between the characters and the screenplay and therefore proves to be the biggest villain for the film. 'Jhoom Barabar Jhoom' is reduced to a cluttered musical show with silly acts where every song shows its flashy edges in a fixed interval of 15-20 minutes. The esteemed filmmakers took audiences for granted by imposing poorly hatched plots with eye candy starlets flashing their costumes and their physical charm in big budgeted soundtracks. click for larger view
'Jhoom Barabar Jhoom' has its merits but they haven't materialized to perfection to garner desired box office results. The film holds flashy surprises in trendy costumes (Akki Narula), synchronized choreography (Vaibhavi Merchant), and stylized cinematography (Ayanka Bose) with supreme production values (Yashraj Films). The film disappoints primarily in the screenplay (Habib Faisal) and scripting (Shaad Ali) departments. It seems the failure is plaguing the esteemed banner, hi-profile stars and competent directors in filmdom as 'Jhoom Barabar Jhoom' disappoints to the hilt. Yashraj's highly glamorized entertainer lays stress on the unexplored, unexplained and untamed Brit cities where middle class and underprivileged Asians reside. It's all about the street smart Southall guys and gals who dream of living a "rags to riches" life.
'Jhoom Barabar Jhoom' picks up in a busy London railway station where the passengers have to wait for long for a delayed train from Birmingham. Two strangers are waiting for their better halves to arrive by this train, and the destiny brings them together. Rikki Thukral (Abhishek Bachchan), stubble looking Punjabi boy and upbeat Pakistani Brit girl Alvira Khan (Preity Zinta) are the two perfect strangers. Rikki is a street smart Bhatinda guy who sells pirated Bollywood DVD's, illegal antiques and World Cup cricket tickets to make easy money. On the contrary, Alvira is a suave socialite who enjoys every luxury at her doorstep in posh London city.
Crowded café and one table to share! The two hours of delay prove boring and both start sharing their love stories. Rikki's love story flashbacks to his silly criminal act in a posh Hotel Ritz where he meets gorgeous Anaida (Lara Dutta) during the final departure of Lady Diana and Dodi before their death. Anaida, a ravishing hotel manager, rescues Rikki after he is abandoned by his business partner, Hafiz Bhai, in an illegal antique transaction. The relationship culminates into love and finally Rikki reaches London to pursue his business. While returning to Anaida, Rikki pays back hotel dues and asks for a ticket to Hollywood trapped in his belongings. (Sounds Silly!)
Alvira's love story works like a monologue as Shaad Ali prefers Shirish Kunder's style of storytelling displayed impressively in 'Jaaneman'. Even he follows Kunder's style of telescope viewing from neighbor's window in the climax in an awkward manner. Alvira's story sounds more senseless and prankish as it flashbacks to Tussaud's wax museum where she is rescued by rich advocate - Steve Singh (Bobby Deol). Firstly, Madame Tussaud's wax museum doesn't have wax models of superheroes as this is filled with great living and dead personalities. Secondly, no wax model is planted on the ceiling so there is no way that a Superman's caricature will fall. Finally, Alvira is rescued and pretends to suffer pain to create compassion in the heart of Steve. Alvira is smitten by Steve's colossal wealth and status. Steve's criminal mind proposes to sue the illustrious Madame Tussaud's museum and seeks damages. Alvira and Steve win the case and their friendship germinates into love relationship. (Sounds sillier than the first story!)
The wait for the train gets longer for Alvira and Rikki but they get separated at the station. Love sparks between them and they find excuses to meet each other. Rikki plans to seek help from roadside prostitute Laila (Lara Dutta in double role) to win Alvira back from Steve. On the other hand, Alvira finds soul mate in geek looking Satwinder (Bobby Deol in double role) to win back Rikki from Anaida. The heat turns up in musical show "Jharokha" where the couples confront each other in a musical show. Alvira and Rikki find true love between them while Laila and Satwinder fall for each other's charm. Then, Amitabh Bachchan spills the beans about the reality of the two hatched stories but the viewers are too exhausted with the boredom.
Shaad Ali Saagal loses control on execution, treatment and narration. This is the weakest offering from him after two grand successes. In hot pursuit to evoke laughter from viewers, the director stoops low as the leading ladies foul their mouths against each other. After 'Neal n Nikki', the film inexpertly talks about pre-martial sex in the most disgusting way. Abhishek delivers one of his worst and reckless performances as he is lauded with amateurish script and character. There are hardly many scenes where he is able to tickle funny bone. Neither Abhishek nor Bobby has ever held any distinction in displaying comical talents in the past. Then, why have they been made protagonists in a hilarious romantic saga? Abhishek hams to the hilt in hilarious scenes with childish expressions. Habib Faisal's dialogues are neither witty nor chirpy to offer anything promising for any actor. The actor's prowess has been decimated to the lowest as the film will prove to be a big nightmare for him in the future. Preity Zinta's fading charm shows her aging face but still she manages to deliver bubbly and vivacious performance. Sadly, she is burdened with dim-witted script and character that fail to justify her comical timing. Preity's drools and Lara's screams fail to evoke sympathy of the viewers. This hardly creates any stir in the film. Both Preity and Abhishek show their sharp edges in the dance sequences but they are too meek to justify their gargantuan star status.
Lara Dutta turns bold and brazen with 'Jhoom Barabar Jhoom' as she kisses, exposes and foulmouths (similar to Bipasha in 'Omkara' with no inhibition. Lara's French makeover may be irritating but she manages to live up to her character. She comes out as the strongest in actor's brigade and delivers impressive performance after her commendable comical act in 'No Entry'. Bobby's dull, dreary and aging looks fail to fit in the caricature of a suave socialite though his geek-looking character (double role) evokes some laughter. Unfortunately, Big B is completely wasted in his guest appearance but still his looks and dancing skills entertain the viewers.
Shankar Ehsaan Loy's music is the worthiest aspect and like its promising audio sales, it lives up to every occasion in the film with great success. All the soundtracks find affinity with the situations in the film but it fails to deliver a competent storyline to the audiences. Akki Narula's costumes are the second major highlight that paint the film in the brightest possible colors and textures. Ayanaka Bose's cinematography captures the urbane charm of Yorkshire, London, Birmingham and Southall with flamboyance. This is the brightest aspect after colorfully rich music as it illustrates the film's high production values.
Visual Effects (Red Chillies VFX) are mind-blowing and are seen in soundtracks like "Kiss of Love", "Jhoom" and "Jhoom Barabar Jhoom". Vaibhavi Merchant's choreographic skills are noteworthy in Big B's solo track and in the grand finale of the film. 'Jhoom Barabar Jhoom' proves to be the weakest offering from the Yashraj banner in recent times and a big disappointment from talented Shaad Ali. Its aggressive promotion coupled with multiple shows in the multiplexes will help get impressive returns in the first weekend but thereafter it might decline at a fast pace. This movie will be counted as one of the biggest disappointments of this year after the supreme debacle of 'Salaam-e-Ishq', 'Shakalaka Boom Boom' and 'The Train'. In nutshell, it's "Doom" for Yashraj after colorful and adventurous "Dhoom"!