My two cents after watching Ae Dil Hai Mushkil twice two weeks apart:
At the outset, why did I watch ADHM twice? The first time was, well, the first time. The second time was to keep A company plus I didn’t quite mind watching it again or so I thought until I actually watched it and lost interest at the very beginning itself. I felt embarrassed that I had recommended this movie to A but, thankfully, he found the second half sensible. Of course, I disagree – ADHM first and second half is utter bullshit. Maybe it’s the lack of depth of feelings in my cold soul or maybe I am just juvenile or maybe it actually sucked. Notwithstanding all the other reviews, here’s why I think it’s the latter:
(Forgive my constant use of bullet points – after entering the legal profession, I don’t quite understand any other way of penning down my thoughts)
- Wealth, wealth and wealth – This movie is about the wealthy for the wealthy. Don’t get me wrong, I am not wealthy by any means but I couldn’t quite empathise with any of the characters. One of them belonged to a family which owned a private jet, the other to a family who could afford a trip to Paris and stay in a three-star hotel and the other a poetess living in a mansion in Vienna. Oh also, the other minor character is a world famous DJ with a presumably rich family because he has a grand wedding with the aforementioned trip chick. The characters don’t do much except look pretty, wear good clothes, have oodles of fun and experience myriad deep emotional feelings for each other. I mean who needs a job?! Who needs a bank balance?! Isn’t that stuff for the poor?
- I like you enough to have sex but, wait, you kiss me like you would your family – Anushka Sharma (trip chick) does little all day except attend dance classes, date and quote deep Murakami-esque thoughts (“I don’t like sadness and I definitely don’t like happiness– I like the middle path which is…life” – wtf!). In the first scene she appears more than willing to hit the sack with Ranbir Kapoor (private jet dude) but is so completely turned off by his kissing that she spends rest of the movie denying any physical attraction to him (“You are my everything, you are my family, you are my ‘best friend’ but I don’t feel that way for you” – Ouch and ouch). His fault, obviously. I mean, c’mon, he is a bad kisser! And who wants the rest of the package anyway – good lucks, shit load of money, good voice and proper TLC.
- What was going on? – One big incest fest, I tell you. I didn’t quite understand Ranbir Kapoor’s obsession with Anushka Sharma whom he just met around 3 times and one of them entailed a trip to Paris sponsored by her family. It definitely wasn’t love at first sight but some overcompensation of feelings over his jilted Mom. Extremely disturbing as he is unable to understand how the two most important women in his life could reject him again and again and again… Anushka Sharma had to run away and deal with cancer to pry him off. ‘Nuf said.
- Once bitten twice shy (not) – Anushka Sharma may have just played one of her least feminist roles till date vis-à-vis NH10 and Sultan. Disappointing run for an actress who usually portrays strong women, she quotes some bullshit on junoon (craziness?) in love and justifies falling in love with Fawad Khan, getting cheated on, marrying him and almost tolerating being cheated on in a quick series of events. Marriage reformation attempt 101 – fail. Her inner woman finally wakes up (quoting her) and she decides to walk away from the marriage. Oh also, this is after she severs ties with her rich family and breaks Ranbir’s pitiful heart.
- The Goddess Mrs. Bacchan – The highlight of the movie, Aishwarya Rai, thankfully, has more sense than Anushka and literally throws Ranbir out when she realises that she is falling for him or maybe she just got bored of him. Although it isn’t the latter, the flawless gorgeous beauty is why you should watch ADHM. Just ensure that you don’t try to understand why a middle-aged, confident, beautiful, wealthy woman decides to turn into a cougar for someone as pathetic as Ranbir Kapoor albeit he is a better bet than her ex-husband – Shah Rukh Khan (some abstract artist). Huge round of applause for SRK – he tries very desperately and endearingly to act all he could in his five minute scene but, sorry bro, this isn’t your movie. Also note, based on what I could glean from their over-the-top urdu dialogues (kaamil et al), SRK had also cheated on ARB. Surprise, surprise. Not.
All in all, leave that brain of yours at home. Let it engage in some deep philosophy or in su-do-ku; bring the rest of yourself – your eyes and heart, specifically. They could use a break from your laptop screen and your dreary ‘poor’ life. After all, with Karan Johar, everyone is rich and everything opulent and every feeling a lifetime in itself.