3.5 Very Good

Salaam-E-Ishq

I wouldnt call Salaam-e-ishq a tribute to LOVE, but its more like a tribute to KARAN JOHAR, YASH CHOPRA & MANI RATNAM brands of filmmaking ! which is not bad, if presented with care ..however,this kichdi is long winded and tests your patience as a viewer ..but its not a bad movie ..it does sparkle with well handled moments at times, but cliche (read cheesy) dialogues, bad acting aka hamming by some of the actors, and a confused screenplay leave you well below the expectations you had from the movie..

But the film did manage to surprise me in certain aspects..from the promos, I was quite excited about the JOHN-VIDYA track, showed great chemistry and their story seemed interesting..but it turned out to be another version of Saathiya & i did not enjoy the chemistry the way i was expecting to enjoy it..anyways, performance wise, both the actors have done quite well. Vidya is excellent as the television reporter and is shown as the more mature of the two initially..but after her accident, it is John who takes over..and his efforts to bring her back to normalcy is beautifully depicted..one scene which has been picturised innovatively, is when John takes Vidya to his parents house and tries to make her remeber when they first met..also, the preclimax scene at Akshaye's house is good..overall, a good effort, but not MY favourite track !

The SALMAN-PRIYANKA track was ok..not mind blowing..Salman's inclusion could be termed as a guest appearance..and even when he arrives, he gets into his "Iam-so-cool-I can speak with a western accent" mode, with dialogues that seems to be a distant cousin of HAHK,KKHH and all sugar coated love stories..and it looks like age is catching up with Sallu..anyways, even so, there were some moments that he created in the movie..the one where he acts like he is proposing to PRIYANKA, with the "tring tring" bit...PRIYANKA...she shud be getting the best award for Hamming her lungs out ! As an item number queen / wannabe tragedy queen, she tries hard to be funny..oh well, at least she tried ! but she does get into the groove in the more serious scenes like the one in the cafe with ANIL kapoor and on the boat with Salman Khan..overall a track thats just nice to look at, but emotion-wise, didnt do anything for me !

The AKSHAYE-AYESHA track was innovative, in the sense, the dialogues were funny and more identifiable..AKSHAYE simply rocked..his potrayal as the commitment phobic guy is so energetic and hilarious, it really perks up the movie to a good extent..however, AYESHA sadly has nothing much to do, except mouth some philosophy about love and moan..but she does justice to whatever she has been offered..the best scenes from this track would be the one with Akshayes's imagination and the climax mandap scene..also the lunch scene when Akshaye tries to break off his marriage is hilarious !

I was least excited about the GOVINDA-SHANNON track, but I quite enjoyed their story..although it is Raja hindustani part 2, it does keep one's interest..the communication (or mis-communication) between the two kept me in splits throughout..Govinda as a cab driver with a heart of gold has done a fine job, although wish he had paid a bit more attention on his makeup which does not hide his age..SHANNON although cute to look at, needs to hone her expressions more..especially when she has to cry (at least by bollywood standards..it just isnt enough!) scenes that stand out are the Airport one when Govinda sees Shannon for the first time, when he closes his eyes and says "I Love you", and the scene at the climax..Shanon also gets to shine in the climax where she abuses her ex-boyfriend's parents in Hindi !

The best track that I liked was the ANIL-JUHI one..a rip off from American Beauty, where a married middle-aged man falls for a much younger girl...Anil is a powerhouse of talent and shines in every scene that he has..his boredom with his life, his childlike excitement when he falls for ANJALI, and his guilt when he realises his mistake is wonderfuly enacted by him..he also proves that he is gutsy, when he shaves off his moush and wears hep cargoes and jackets in order to impress his girl friend's friends..his attempt at breakdancing is hilarious and you also feel bad for him, since he doesnt know that he is making a fool out of himself..JUHI, although she does not have much to do footage-wise, turns in an excellent performance..her scenes with Anil when she suspects his infidelity and then later when her doubts are confirmed and the one in the plane, have been sensitively and maturely performed by her..this is definitley the most emotional and heartwarming track of the lot..the only sour thumb was Anjali who played Anil "lust" interest..could do to improve her acting..and although she tries to look hot, she is more apt for cutie pie roles..but decent nevertheless..

The SOHAIL-ISHA track though not connected to the main story in any way, is cute and funny..since the two have nothing much to do performance wise, and are there for only 4-5 scenes, I enjoyed it thouroughly..especially the scene where their bed catches fire on their first night and then the scene in the end credits where their train passes though the tunnel..howlarious ! Sohail does go over the top at times, but its acceptable since he does not have many scenes ! timepass track !

The length of the movie is like 4 hours (if you count the interval and the trailers and advts) ..not a problem if it had had the right ingredients, in the right amount to keep you engrossed..the narration also is confusing ..the way it flits in and out of the 6 tracks..you get used to one track and then it suddenly shifts focus to another one! Irritating !

Music is excellent..SEL has done an outstanding job..every number has been picturised beautifully ..excellent sets, costumes and choreography ! my favourite ones are the title song "Salaam-E-Ishq" & "Ya rabba"..

So did I like the movie in total ? well, yes and no..the movie shines only in parts and there is no track which can be termed the best..all of the stories have their "moments"..Nikhil Advani's Kal Ho Naa Ho is my favourite movie, but sadly this time he sort of missed the bus and caught a bullock cart instead !