Two days of pondering over this much-hyped film amidst divisive reactions has me thinking if it’s easy-to-dislike. I believe one reason for the same could be the bold title which takes itself a bit too seriously. Portraying and marketing itself as something of “depth” has sort of mimicked the same energy of calling oneself a mystery and inadvertently becoming the opposite of one. The other reason could be a general distaste towards a lavish display of affluence in a story with not enough characters to relate to. Or the fact that they cheated us by calling Goa… Alibaug?

Moving on from tangential rambling, Shakun Batra’s new film is, at a base level, engaging. It shifts genres, and impressively so because it even manages to hold one emotional current – of running away/moving-on from the past – intact underneath an often swinging plot. There’s so much happening at plot level, that drama and emotional connection of the story does get buried under layers of financial plot mechanics and pointedly melancholic shots of waves. The film shines the brightest in sequences of inter-personal turbulence, much like the filmmaker’s previous Kapoor & Sons. He designs conflicts well, but his dialogues sound very calculated as opposed to sounding like they were “felt”.

Deepika’s performance marries the determined and the vulnerable, doing solid justice to Batra’s rendering of her character. She stands tall over Siddhant and Ananya who also aren’t shaded as much in the writing. I just don’t find the infidelity in the story as complex as the film thinks it is, when the reasons for both of them getting together are as by the numbers as they can get. That whole portion plays out without any surprise or intensity, probably because the makers were too confident of the directions the film would take post that. Zain, as a character, remains at arm’s distance throughout the film, with Siddhant’s inexpressive eyes not helping. When we’re seeing the story unfold from his perspective as much as Alisha’s, I wish his past came in flashbacks too, and not just dialogues. Observing him at the same level as Alisha could’ve given the complexity his choices needed. Ananya’s Tia comes across as a “type” more than a person, owing to the absence of her own personal thoughts until the very end. But I do feel she’s played even that, fairly well.

This is a messy film for sure, it didn’t make me root for its characters, but I still liked watching it unfold. It’s a well-mounted film from the way it’s shot to how the narrative is packaged, visually.


Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Recent Posts

You Might Also Like

Manjummel Boys
Jigarthanda DoubleX
Ponniyin Selvan: II