Movie Review: OK JAANU by FENIL SETA

It’s not uncommon to come across couples who are, well, not exactly a ‘couple’. They do everything that one does in a relationship and yet they are not in a relationship! Casual relationship, situationship – there are many such terms to it. It is so known and common now that one doesn’t even raise eyebrows when people encounter such ‘couples’. OK Jaanu tells the story of one such jodi, their happy and sad times and a lot more. It’s an official remake of the much loved OK Kanmani and manages to entertain and touch the heart and also raise some laughs!

The story of the movie: Adi (Aditya Roy Kapur) is new to Mumbai and stays at the house of Judge Shrivastava (Naseeruddin Shah), a family friend who is still madly in love with his wife Charu (Leela Samson) despite completing 49 years of marriage. The moment Adi lands in the city, he encounters Tara (Shraddha Kapoor) in a very unusual way. Both meet and sparks fly. They decide to even live-in but they also decide not to fall in the ‘trap’ of love and marriage.

For those who have seen OK Kanmani, OK Jaanu will come across as a slightly pale version of the original. For those who haven’t seen the original, OK Jaanu will turn out to be a fun fare. And also for those who have savoured OK Kanmani, the remake can be enjoyed as there’s certain freshness despite being a copy-paste of the original. The actors and their crackling chemistry especially bring that touch. The opening credits are super-cool and the film begins instantly with no time wasted. And that’s the beauty of this film – it keeps moving without taking needless halts. Even the songs don’t act as roadblocks as they are very well shot. The funny moments are aplenty and nicely done. The intermission point especially is quite something. Post-intermission, the film does get a bit unconvincing at certain places, a problem faced by OK Kanmani as well. Even the thrill-induced climax towards the end does seem a bit forced. But the film ends on a nice note and that’s what matters.

Aditya Roy Kapur is superb as Adi. He had lot of pressure since Dulquer Salmaan had killed it in the original. But Aditya with his laidback and fun style manages to give a splendid performance. The way he sings ‘Duniya Mein Logon Ko’ in the train, goofs up when Tara calls him for the first time and reacts in the emotional scenes is something to be watched out for. More than Fitoor, which had a better scope for a great performance, it’s in OK Jaanu that Aditya Roy Kapur manages to make an impact! Shraddha Kapoor also manages to leave a huge mark. She looks extremely lovable and matches Aditya very well. There’s no doubt that this is one of the coolest jodis we have in Bollywood! Naseeruddin Shah has a very crucial role and touches hearts. It’s great to see the veteran actor after a long time on screen and that too in such a lovely role. Leela Samson too does a fine job. She says very little but still stands out. Kitu Gidwani (Tara’s mother) provides fine support and the same goes for the actors playing Aditya’s brother and sister-in-law. Prahlad Kakar (Adi’s boss) overacts but that suits him!

A R Rahman’s songs are damn good and suit the narrative well. The title song is the best and equally rocking is The Humma Song (by Tanishk Bagchi & Badshah). The rap portion in the latter is bad but the song on the whole works big time! Enna Sona is stylishly presented and is worth watching. Kaara Fankaara and Jee Lein too are good. Background score is funky. Ravi K Chandran’s cinematography as always is first-rate. Sharmishta Roy’s production design is damn appealing especially in The Humma Song. Mani Ratnam’s story is fresh despite being predictable. Screenplay is top notch despite few unconvincing moments in the second hour. Gulzar’s dialogues are translations of the original dialogue at places but overall, he has added his touch and that shows. Shaad Ali deserves credit for his direction. Often those who helm the remake aren’t given much credit as people feel that they have merely done ‘copy-paste’. But that’s not true as even recreating something requires efforts. And Shaad Ali does a good job in this regard. He however falters at quite a few places. The problem is that the original is no nice that when one makes a slightly watered down version of it, it is seen as a huge downer. But a fine job and hope Shaad makes such great films in future too!

Some of the best scenes:
1. Adi and Tara meet in church
2. Adi sees Charu’s condition live for the first time
3. All songs of the film
4. Adi and Tara meet Shrivastava and Charu
5. The intermission point
6. Adi and Tara at the gynecologist’s clinic
7. Adi and Shraddha decide the plan for the last 10 days
8. The final 10 minutes

On the whole, OK Jaanu is a nice, entertaining ride that moves at a good pace and entertains thoroughly. There are no tearjerking moments but the film boasts of sequences that will touch the hearts of viewers. Aditya and Shraddha’s chemistry is crackling while the songs take the film to another level. If you haven’t seen OK Kanmani, OK Jaanu will be great fun!

My rating – *** out of 5!

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