Thursday, April 24, 2014

2 States : Alia makes you high, the film leaves you dry !!!

A new trend is sweeping Hindi Film Industry these days, where popular piece of literature is finding their way to being adapted into screenplays. That’s another thing that books written by Chetan Bhagat are hardly piece of literature, never the less one cannot ignore the fan base of this new-age celebrated writer of India. Unarguably, the book in question “2 States” is his best work till date that was also a bestseller had immensely appealed to the youth of India. And the fact, that book narrated Bhagat’s own story was icing on the cake.
No wonder then that 2 States made perfect sense for Karan Johar to bring it alive on celluloid. Johar, who has eye for talent, this time, bestowed the responsibility to first time director Abhishek Varman to direct the film. Bhagat’s earlier books Five Point Someone & Three Mistakes of My Life when adapted on screen not only were critically acclaimed but also went on to be the huge money spinners. So does “2 States” the film – manages to live up to the expectations, let’s find out.

Unlike, 3 Idiots and Kai Po Che – the author’s earlier adaptation, the screenplay of 2 States is 100% adaptation of the original book. The story revolves between Punjabi munda Krish Malhotra and gori Madrasan Ananya Swaminathan, who meets in IIM-A campus, and sparks fly between them. After having their share of confusion and fun beneath the sheets in the campus, the young couple finally decides to commit and take their relationship forward only to realize marriage in India is not just about the boy and the girl. From here on, the story embarks upon the journey of the young couple upon convincing their parents and also coming in terms with a few skeletons in their backyard.

“2 States” has all ingredients of making a good Rom-com: Romance, Humour, Drama and peppy songs. The script has moments which have audience in splits specially interactions of Krish’s Punjabi Mom with Ananya’s Tamilian parents. The advantage of a book is that by design it will be descriptive and hence give more fodder for its reader to feast upon. And hence it is important when it is adapted; it gives the audience a similar effect. And that’s where the movie falters: it fails to create heart rendering moments between couples, or strong emotional scenes that will make audience high. While the  pace is breezy and flows pretty smoothly from beginning to end but it remains a plateau without any memorable high points. One exception being the conflict scene between Krish and his father. Chetan Bhagat’s earlier adaptations worked better as the screen adaptations moved beyond the premise of the books and created moments of their own.
Never the less, 2 States is very much a watchable movie. It’s just that probably the expectations were higher. The biggest strength of the film is its cast and crew.Abhishek Varman lends a solid punch in its direction capturing smaller nuances in great details. Arjun Kapoor as Krish completely fits the character and lends the right kind of vulnerability and softness the character needs. Since the story is told from his viewpoint, his character is also the strongest in the movie in terms of detailing. Not the easiest character to play but this young actor does well. Also watching him play a banker who works in Yes Bank and being an aspiring writer made me smile. Just for trivia sake,Yes Bank shown in the movie is actual Yes Bank office headquarters at Indiabulls Financial Centre, Mumbai.

Amrita Singh is probably the biggest surprise of the movie – playing the stout Punjabi mom and delivers the funniest lines of the movie with aplomb. Revathy and Subhramaniam don’t quite get a chance to portray their immense talent but still shines in their limited role. Ronit Roy repeats the Udaan act with aplomb. But at the end of the day, it’s Alia who carries the movie on her shoulders pitching up yet another terrific performance.  Like Highway, she is again refreshing natural in every scene, despite her character doesn’t move beyond being feisty. She scorches in every frame and looks a diva, especially in the sarees. Her dimple manages to outshine the not so bright parts of the movie. To sum up 2 States, Alia makes you high but the film overall leaves you dry. But never the less definitely a one time dekho !!!!

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