4 Very Good

Anjaana Anjaani

When it comes to the response to Anjaana Anjaani - it seems like a love-hate affair. People who liked it loved it and people who disliked it hated it. This somewhat marred my impression of Anjaana Anjaani as I sat in the screen waiting for the opening credits to roll. But I am glad to say that I enjoyed it and I enjoyed it primarily because I understood what director Siddharth Anand and fellow screenwriters Mamta Anand and Advaita Kala were trying to say. Anjaana Anjaani may be listless, it may be plotless but what holds the tremendous journey of events together is a wonderful message that no matter what garbage life kicks at you - it's always worth living.
Akash is an overambitious businessman who, by borrowing a multi-million dollar loan, takes down his whole company as well as his friends. Seeing no future for his life, Akash heads for the bridge only to meet Kiara, a lovelorn and incredibly drunk girl, also bent on ending her life. This is how they meet and from then on continues a journey on which Akash and Kiara anticipate living a lifetime all the way up until New Year's Eve - the day they decided to end their lives.
Anjaana Anjaani features a touchy topic: suicide. It is the very beginning of the film that a potential lover or potential hater would make their verdict. You could either say it'll be interesting to see what happens or you could either walk out and say bogus - but by walking out you've missed out on a message that life is never pointless and can be just as enjoyable - should one give it a chance.
You also take a while to warm up to Akash and Kiara as they aren't instantly likeable. In fact both of them are whiny and hormonal, just as you'd expect from two people who are suicidal. But you've got to empathise to sympathise - you have to put yourself in Kiara's shoes who was badly cheated on by her soon to be fiancée and the now penniless Akash, who has no future except paying a ridiculously large loan off.
But as they joke as they laugh and dance their last days off, you realise and think all is well. The film is inventively funny in a very Imtiaz Ali way and Siddharth Anand doesn't just depend on his characters, he depends on motifs too. Note the blood dripping down Ranbir's face, the scene where Priyanka cuts her hair off in despair and the scene where Ranbir and Priyanka stare at each other in silence before kissing. Siddharth has really improved.
I would agress that Anjaana Anjaani is a perfect crossover vehicle for Indo-British or Indo American audiences. The hoi-polloi would prefer Robot and that's fine, but Anjaana Anjaani is an enjoyable, emotionally resonant and funny film with electrifying performances and a nice message buried at the crux.
Priyanka and Ranbir have both put forward their career best performances. Ranbir perfectly underplays his character throughout and that in turn makes his performance believable and natural. Ranbir has shown various shades as an actor and being the romantic hero is just one of his shiny assets.
Priyanka is a complete and utter revelation. Post Fashion, there's no stopping Priyanka in terms of her performances and in this film she steals practically every scene. Note her in the scene where she cuts off her hair, note her expression when she asks Zayed for forgiveness and her performance on the bridge is brilliant.
Cinematography is vibrant and eye-catching. Chandran saab has done a fantastic job yet again with lush colours proving to be a feast for the eyes. Music by Vishal Shekhar is the best of this year and is sure to win over award shows unless they buy into the A.R. Rahman monopoly.
Overall, Anjaana Anjaani is a modern film that requires a brain to get what it is. It's funny, it's emotional and it's romantic - but what is key is the message that everyone should live life and give it a chance because Aas Paas Hai Khuda :)