Director: Yash Chopra
Cast: Shah Rukh Khan, Katrina Kaif, Anushka Sharma, Anupam Kher
The main prayer twist is inspired/copied from The End of the Affair starring Ralph Fiennes and Julianne Moore. The daredevil bomb defuser character of SRK is inspired/copied from Jeremy Runner’s character from The Hurt Locker. The “retrograde amnesia” is inspired from Memento which was already used in Ghajini. But it also borrows another thing from Ghajini. Anushka reading SRK’s diary and the SRK-Katrina flashback is similar to Jiah Khan reading Aamir’s diary and the Aamir-Asin flashback. A couple of scenes seem inspired from Yash Chopra’s own Dil To Pagal Hai and the bank scene of Katrina and Anushka reminds of a scene from Silsila.
Some scenes are excellent like the opening credits sequence, the dance leading to Ishq Shava and some of the subtle emotional scenes between SRK and Anushka like the one where Anushka confesses being in love with him and the airport scene. The end credits showing Yash Chopra directing with the title track is also very good.
Now the flaws. Why does Meera Thapar pray to Jesus in a church? Initially I thought Katrina would have a Caucasian mother (the common excuse/justification for taking Katrina in a movie) but her mother turns out to be an Indian. And this Indian child is a blonde as a kid! It also seems odd that Anupam Kher, a Indian, decides for a arranged marriage with a gora. The prayer twist is also silly but at least there is some character justification for that. But the memory loss thing is completely ridiculous.
SRK saves Anushka, a swimming champion from drowning! Even though they tried to use the cool sounding “retrograde amnesia” made popular by Memento this is the old school “Yaaddash Chali Gayi” which goes at a convenient point in the movie only to come back at another convenient point later in the movie. The scenes involving the doctor and the drama that they do to revive his memory are cringe worthy. Stupidly the British cops just allow some random Indian guy to come and defuse the bomb because one of them thinks SRK knows what he is talking about.
Shah Rukh Khan did not look like a 25 year old from any angle in the London parts. He not only looked old but also fat surprisingly. May be it had something to do with the clothes he was wearing. He was trying too hard to put on the dimple charm. He probably could have pulled this part very well in the 90s but he is now too old for it. SRK was pathetic while dancing and this has to be the worst dancing he has done in a movie ever. In contrast SRK not only looked good in the bearded part but also acted very well in this part. There are some scenes which reminded of his Chak De India act.
Katrina looked gorgeous in the first half. She looked hot in the Ishq Shava part and danced very well in the dance leading up to Ishq Shava. She was again bad in some parts of Ishq Shava. As far as acting is concerned it seemed like she had only one expression on her face – an expression of being confused and partly sad through out the movie.
Anushka acts very well in some scenes – the scenes where there were some emotional moments between her and SRK – but she was also overacting and quite annoying in other scenes. She was overdoing the whole talkative bubbly part which she has been typecast into. Some of her dialogues were very cheesy and corny. Her character also reminded of Karisma’s character from Dil To Pagal Hai. Rishi Kapoor and Neetu Singh cameos were ok. Anupam Kher had only a couple of scenes and not much to do.
The songs should have been used only in parts. The Challa song with the lip syncing and being in Punjabi seemed to take up a lot of time. Heer, the best song of the movie is well shot. Ishq Dance instrumental was excellent and Ishq Shava should have been used only in part because it seemed to stretch on. Saans song was excellently shot.
Background music by Rahman was excellent especially in some portions like the bike ride scenes and bomb defusing scenes. Cinematography by the late Anil Mehta is excellent and the Leh locations are beautifully shot. Namrata Rao is supposed to be the editor but it seems that the movie was not edited at all. One gets the feeling that they decided to release the whole unedited movie shot by Yash Chopra just because he died.
Have not seen The End of the Affair but it is based on a 1951 novel of the same name and it is set in 1946. So the praying part and sacrificing to meet might seem apt in that movie but it just does not gel in a movie set in 2002. It also seems to me (I could be wrong) that the character praying to leave him for his life in return is partially associated with the guilt of cheating on her husband. Here the Katrina fiance relationship is hardly developed at all and it does not seem that Katrina has any guilty feelings about cheating on her fiance.
The first half is excessively long and tedious. It goes on and on and should have been trimmed by at least twenty minutes. The second half is comparatively better with the army portions and Anushka’s bubbly character but the climax is plain stupid and could have been been completely avoided. The first half should have had the intermission at the accident scene itself with Katrina leaving. This way there would have been some suspense in the movie and also SRK thinking that Katrina is coldhearted would have made sense. The Katrina praying part should have been shown in a flashback in the climax. It seems that the Ralph Fiennes character finds out about the prayer thing later in the original too.
Yash Chopra had said that he wanted to make “A film which has an old soul but a young heart.” when he announced the launch of this movie. The problem is that the old soul and the young heart don’t gel here. The old soul seems out of place and the young heart seems too wannabe. Many times older filmmakers who have no idea of how young people behave add scenes of wannabe coolness.
They could just make a period movie instead – set it in the era they are comfortable in. Jab Tak Hai Jaan could have been a good movie (removing the stupid memory loss climax) if it was set in a older time period may be the 70s or even 80s. But since it is set in modern times many will not like it – find it ridiculous and boring. It might still appeal to women and people who are old school.Tags: Anushka Sharma Jab Tak Hai Jaan Katrina Kaif Member Reviews Reviews Shah Rukh Khan Yash Chopra