3 Good

Since an early age, we are hammered with the fact that Man is a social animal. Most of the things we do, endorse or believe in are in synch with what is acceptable in the society as well. Few don’t care a damn as to how society perceives them but most of them are constantly bogged down by ‘log kya kahenge?’ phenomena. Akaash Vani throws light on it and indicates that lives are ruined because of societal pressures. The film is made with the right intentions and does make a mark, but excessive length however dilutes the impact.

The story of the movie: Akaash (Kartik Tiwari), a Chandigarh dude and Vani (Nushrat Bharucha), a sweet happy-go-lucky girl from Dehradun, get enrolled in a college in Delhi. Sparks fly the moment they set their eyes on each other. Soon, they get into a relationship and spend the four years of their college life in bliss and contentment. After they are done with their graduation, tragedy strikes and Vani is compelled to end the relationship. After a gap, Akaash and Vani meet again. Both are woefully unhappy with their lives. Getting back in a relationship is a remote possibility now since times and situations have changed. Will they still go ahead and make it happen?

Akaash Vani has a breezy commencement. Few scenes put an instant smile on one’s face but some sequences don’t create much of an impact. Things get better with the scene where Akaash and Vani discuss their honeymoon plans and go separate ways after college ends. The tragedy comes out quite well (though Kiran Kumar’s break down scene was an embarrassment) and so does the intermission point. It’s in the second half that things get really better. The manner in which the evils of forced arranged marriage are depicted hits viewers like a ton of bricks. Things get slightly lighter during Akaash and Vani’s reunion and their trip to the hills. However, again, things get stretched at this point that once more takes away bit of the impact created. The climax however is impressive and Vani’s outburst was well-written and executed. It might appear preachy to some but sums up the film and its message quite well!

Kartik Tiwari played a distorted lover in Pyaar Ka Punchnama quite well. Here too, he gets to do something similar but the setting and the character is quite different. But Kartik doesn’t disappoint and comes up with a wonderful performance. Here’s an actor who can go places, if he makes the correct choices! Nushrat Bharucha gets ample scope to prove her worth and comes out with flying colour. If viewers hated her as the conniving and manipulative girlfriend in Pyaar Ka Punchnama, they’ll love her as the very sweet and lovely Vani. Also, her transformation in the second half is very convincing. One instantly gets drawn towards her and hoot for her in the finale when she takes charge. A performance to watch out for!

Sana Shaikh (Sumbul) is too good. Same goes for Gautam Mehra (Shekhar). Both of them in fact add a lot to the film and most importantly, seem quite real and straight out of life. Sunny Singh Nijjar (Ravi) gets his act correct. Kiran Kumar hams at places but is fine otherwise. Mahesh Thakur and Prachi Singh Pandya are first-rate.

Hitesh Sonik’s music is subtle and beautifully flows with the film’s narrative. Sudhir K Chaudhary’s cinematography is appealing. Film has been shot in grueling conditions (-9 degrees in the Manali sequence) but the results are to watch out for! Sets are theatrical and go against the realistic and contemporary feel of the film.

Luv Ranjan’s dialogues (and shayaris) are damn impressive. Story too makes for an impact as even in today’s modern times, orthodox mindsets continue to thrive. However, script as well as direction could have been tighter since the interest dips considerably at places. On the positive side, characters are very well etched and moreover, Luv brings out the old world charm and romance at several points that’s always a pleasure to witness. The gentleman surely has loads of talent…hope he brings out his best in his next!

On the whole, Akaash Vani is a feel-good entertainer that in many ways serves as an eye-opener. The excessive length is a huge deterrent but yet, the film deserves a watch, on TV/DVD/DTH if not in theatres!