Review: Rocky Aur Rani Kii Prem Kahaani Movie
ROCKY AUR RANI KII PREM KAHAANI is a well-packaged entertainer that has ample merits to strike a chord with the youth as well as families.
“Stab the body and it heals.
But injure the heart and the wound lasts a lifetime.”
Matters of the heart can get complicated at times. That, in a nutshell, is the essence of ROCKY AUR RANI KII PREM KAHAANI, which marks Karan Johar’s return to direction after seven long years.
On face-value, ROCKY AUR RANI KII PREM KAHAANI may come across as yet another prem kahaani from Dharma. After all, KJo has a penchant for love stories, which is evident in his choice of films as a storyteller. However, ROCKY AUR RANI KII PREM KAHAANI packs a lot more than Rocky and Rani’s romance in those [approx] 2.49 hours.
Now to the pertinent question: Does KJo get it right? Oh yes, he does. ROCKY AUR RANI KII PREM KAHAANI wins Round 1 by casting the right names for the pivotal characters, namely Rocky [Ranveer Singh], Rani [Alia Bhatt] and the three stalwarts [Dharmendra, Jaya Bachchan and Shabana Azmi]. Having said that, the real triumph lies in its storytelling, which surprises you at several points. More on that later!
The plot *without* spoilers… Opposites attract! Rocky Randhawa [Ranveer Singh] and Rani Chatterjee [Alia Bhatt] are drawn towards each other, but realize that it’s not easy to win over their respective families. That’s when they hit upon the unique idea to switch places: Rocky will reside with Rani’s family in her house, while Rani will move into Rocky’s palatial mansion and win over his family.
Of course, there’s another subplot that moves concurrently, but we aren’t revealing that.
ROCKY AUR RANI KII PREM KAHAANI is not an easy film to write and execute. It’s clear that KJo has moved on with the times. This is evident in the screenwriting — it’s progressive and addresses societal issues. Also women empowerment. Additionally, KJo knows how to translate emotions on screen, an aspect that plays out in the third act of the film.
It’s fascinating to see how the women [Alia, Jaya Bachchan, Shabana Azmi, Churni Ganguly, Kshitee Jog] take the centre stage this time. Sure, the men [Ranveer, Dharmendra, Aamir Bashir, Tota Roy Choudhury] are integral to the story, but the dramatic moments involving the women and some of the lines delivered by them are sure to leave an impact.
ROCKY AUR RANI KII PREM KAHAANI bears the stamp of an accomplished storyteller, with KJo avoiding the tried-and-tested rom-com template to move things. For instance, the integration of timeless tracks in the narrative is so refreshingly hatke. Also, the dramatic twist before ‘Dhindhora Baje Re’ and the heated argument that follows is brilliant.
The writing [Ishita Moitra, Shashank Khaitan, Sumit Roy] doesn’t fall prey to mediocrity at any stage. It encompasses drama, emotions and romance seamlessly. Would like to make a special mention of the dialogues [Ishita Moitra], which garnishes the sequences beautifully. DoP Manush Nandan creates some stunning frames and does complete justice to the scale.
Rocky Aur Rani Kii Prem Kahaani – Official Trailer | Dharmendra, Jaya Bachchan, Shabana Azmi, Ranveer Singh, Alia Bhatt
The film overstays its welcome and how one wishes KJo and his editor [Nitin Baid] would’ve kept the run time in check, not stretching beyond 2.30 hours.
The soundtrack [Pritam] is catchy and peppy. ‘Tum Kya Mile’ has a strong shelf life, while ‘What Jhumka?’ is already popular on reels. ‘Dhindhora Baje Re’ — released few days prior to its theatrical release — is sure to climb the popularity charts once you watch the film and realise its relevance to the proceedings.
The choice of actors is perfect, that’s also one of the reasons why the written word carries weight. Ranveer Singh is terrific in a role that seems tailored for him. Agree, he has portrayed a North Indian character in the past [including his launch pad BAND BAAJA BAARAAT], but you cannot accuse him of repeating his act. He makes you laugh with his faulty English, but it’s in the emotional moments that he proves his calibre.
Alia Bhatt is in superb form. Her confidence — especially in sequences with Jaya Bachchan — is remarkable. And the outburst towards the pre-climax deserves brownie points. Also, her Bengali dialect will win her immense praise. Alia proves, yet again, that she’s in a league of her own. Moreover, she shares a wonderful chemistry with Ranveer.
The veterans leave a mark in their respective parts. Dharmendra is so good, it’s great to see him on the big screen after a hiatus. Jaya Bachchan is electrifying. Her commanding presence, authoritative attitude and cold stares — this is a stand-out act that’s sure to be talked about by moviegoers. Shabana Azmi is fantastic, delivers a controlled performance without going overboard in any sequence.
Aamir Bashir and Kshitee Jog [Ranveer’s parents] and Tota Roy Choudhury and Churni Ganguly [Alia’s parents] excel in their respective parts. Would like to make a special mention of Tota Roy Choudhury’s graceful dance on two occasions and Churni Ganguly’s sequence in a store.
On the whole, ROCKY AUR RANI KII PREM KAHAANI is a well-packaged entertainer that has ample merits to strike a chord with the youth as well as families. At the box-office, it has the potential to emerge a success story.