2 Average

Anjaana Anjaani

Two strangers in their desperate times seek solace from the edges of George Washington bridge to end their respective traumas caused by the stock market meltdown and betrayal in love by a childhood boyfriend. After several failed attempts to commit suicide together, Kiara (Priyanka Chopra) is convinced that they were meant to live together for a little longer to fulfill their bucket list. Akash (Ranbir Kapoor) is unsure but finds his comfort in her happiness. From a wish to be stranded in the middle of the ocean to taking a long drive through Nevada to even falling in love, the duo fulfill many of their wishes through a series of misadventures that are only partly entertaining and otherwise insipid. Indeed, Ranbir has his first sorely disappointing movie resulting from the flawed direction by Siddharth Anand, who gave us 'Hum Tum', 'Salaam Namaste' and 'Bachna Ae Haseeno'. The lackluster and tedious tale of two strangers, 'Anjaana Anjaani' is a major let down that boasts of little apart from its cinematography and music.

The viewer simply cannot connect with the gravity of the circumstances of the protagonists. When such a heartthrob lead pair is expected to engage the audience with romance, laughter and fun, their vain attempt in conveying any sort of seriousness goes unnoticed. Blame the script for trying too hard to push some bitterness down our throats when we're expecting candy.
When it comes to performances, the issue is not that Ranbir has only played the charismatic lover boy. Remember 'Rocket Singh' and 'Raajneeti'? We know he is capable but here, he seems lost because of the script. He is only himself in the song Tumse Hi Tumse where the irony is that the 'cool' Ranbir is only an imagination. Priyanka Chopra definitely has the better role of the two but such weakness in her character coupled with an uninspiring partner doesn't lead to much chemistry. One can only look back at Kareena's character in 'Jab We Met' and appreciate Imtiaz Ali's beautiful characterization that was played so vivaciously. Kiara is just too artificial, unreal and no fun to be with. Ranbir's boredom is thus apparent in the light of such partnership. What the duo are truly missing is a third partner. Had Siddharth cast a comedian as their companion, the film would've been a lot more entertaining. Vinay Pathak, Johnny lever, Sharman Joshi, Ritesh Deshmukh and Arshad Warsi are just some of the brilliant supporting actors who could've made the film so enjoyable. Oh well.

The film's strength is of course, its music. At 52, Lucky Ali can still deliver the most rocking song of the year with the brilliantly picturized Hairat. Aas paas Khuda though unwanted in the film is beautifully rendered by Rahat Fateh Ali Khan. Anjaana Anjaani (Vishal & Shilpa Rao) will be among the memorable tracks with outstanding composition and melodious singing. Mohit Chauhan has another hit in his bag withTujhe Bhula Diya which is a unique fusion song, the best one after Mora Piya earlier this year. Shekhar & Caralisa Monteiro (Rock On! fame) make Tumse Hi Tumse the most hummable tune that puts a spring in every step when you listen to it.

The few scenes that stand out include the sequence in the middle of the ocean and the gay club dance followed by the hilarious encounter. Among the rest of the cast, Zayed Khan is an insult to the name of his character! His screen presence is overkill in this 150 min drama and adds no value to the wafer thin plot. Priyanka won't be signing future projects based on this film and Ranbir would at best try to get over playing the serious-lost-romantic soul who needs redemption.

Siddharth Anand also takes liberty in placing too many songs that outweigh the plot itself. Most of the story progresses in the songs and Vishal-Shekhar have done a brilliant job in engaging us with catchy tunes. They are greatly supported by Ravi Chandran's cinematography that is quite spectacular in shots of New York City, Nevada and San Francisco.
While the songs, few comic scenes and dashing appearances of the lead actors may draw die-hard fans to the theaters, they will be let down by the plot, length, script and above all, the direction that simply fails to engage and entertain. The attempt to combine a serious subject such as suicide and depression with romance and adventure falls flat on the audience's brain that expects to see contemporary cinema with aspects they can take home.
In this case, let the strangers play their tunes and watch them from afar if possible.

- 6.31 on a scale of 1-10.