In a world of monotonous romantic and bland comedy flicks, we the Indian audience, crave for something out-of-the-box. This is the reason that when we hear about movies like Dear Zindagi our expectations go high.
Dear Zindagi, directed by Gauri Shinde is clearly a piece of her secluded examination of all the mental issues faced by the youth. No matter if it’s anxiety, depression, confusion or fear. Every person in his/her twenties faces such issues. And the movie beautifully absorbs every notion described above but fails to voice the emotional connect. And this is where the audience returns home dissatisfied.
The story is all about Kaira aka Koko played by Alia Bhatt. This is her best performance till date, by the way. The way in which she portrays her character is impeccable. Kaira is a very chilled out cinematographer. Shinde’s sketch of Kaira actually gives a hint about the revolution of teenage girls. With ease Kaira declares about the fling that she had, to her current love . This makes the film look quite intriguing.
Kaira’s life suddenly takes a turn. When I use the word ‘suddenly’, it actually means all of a sudden, for you don’t get what just happened. Amidst a sea of words and piles of chats all of a sudden you realize that Kaira the confident lady is actually Kaira the kid. A scared little kid who is fighting with her childhood trauma and abandonment issues.
Enters Dr. Jehangir Khan, played by Shah Rukh Khan. Dr. Khan is a sophisticated therapist who does the work of taming this vulnerable yet rebellious Kaira into a balanced individual who is able to control her emotions. He gives her a brand new perspective of life, makes her more accepting towards things and invokes open mindedness in her.
Another intriguing bit about the movie is that you get to see Shah Rukh Khan as an actor and not a superstar. His irresistible charm cannot ever fade. His out-of-the-box therapies makes you want to book him as your therapist.
In the movie Shah Rukh teaches Alia to play Kabaddi with life but it’s actually the screenplay that plays the real Kabaddi. The moment you sense things getting touched they get left at a certain point. This kind of change of mind would have happened during the framing of the story.
The movie has certain sequences that give you a new take on life. One of such sequences is the one where Shah Rukh debates on the concept of finding all specialities in one relationship. A person can have a special friend for coffee, another special friend for books, movies, food etc. Why shall one burden his/her romantic relationship with all such things? The point might not be taken by many, but was noted by some. But, the consistency of thoughts is missing after some point. The movie too has what one would say ‘half-baked’ scenes. Like where he gives ‘gyaan’ on parents and their parenting, or the cycle repair scene, or where he tells about his inner demons. These scenes fail to give you an insight about what is being portrayed.
Amit Trivedi’s music makes the movie look more mild and gentle. Although, I feel the movie still needs a bit of editing and trimming here and there. Apart from Alia and Shah Rukh, we get to see Angad Bedi, Kunal Kapoor, Ali Zafar and Ira Dubey giving in their valuable support to the film.
Most importantly, Shah Rukh and Alia’s chemistry is delightfully charming. This is one of those rare movies where Shah Rukh Khan has given space to his co-star to be in the limelight of a protagonist while he keeps cool in a supporting role.
All in all, Dear Zindagi is a beautifully performed, not so touching work of Gauri Shinde. The movie gives you an all new platitude on life, teaches you new tricks to tackle people, things and situations. If the plot doesn’t satisfy you much, the soul stirring performance by Alia Bhatt and Shah Rukh Khan’s everlasting charm definitely will.
Our verdict- 3.5/5
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