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Posted: 13 November 2012 at 3:34am | IP Logged

Review: Jab Tak Hai Jaan's breezy romance has weak story

Last updated on: November 13, 2012 15:53 IST
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A scene from Jab Tak Hai JaanSukanya Verma feels Jab Tak Hai Jaan is nothing more than lovely fluff that could have been shorter, snappier but is definitely worth watching once for the man whose name appears against the bright blue sky - Mr Yash Chopra [ Images ]

A rookie documentary filmmaker discovers a diary storing a ten-year-old romance of a man who cannot die and decides to shoot a movie on him.

The man in question has lost his heart to a flawless beauty while shoveling snow outside a grand cathedral in United Kingdom and now diffuses bombs in the Indian army [ Images ].

The concerned pretty woman is in the habit of trading with God by making small-scale sacrifices (will give up chocolates, fur) in order to realise her wishes. And how this practice costs her (and us) heavy forms the crux of the plot.

Their lives and loves are interconnected through a kiss, two road accidents and a dramatic shift of backdrop from the swish streets of London [ Images ] to the striking landscapes of Ladakh and Kashmir [ Images ], which unfolds an old-fashioned love story plagued by prolonged complications.

Welcome to world of grand romances in Yash Chopra's breezy, signature treatment that distracts us from son and fellow filmmaker Aditya's farfetched story.

Jab Tak Hai Jaan is an elegant, harmless entertainer for most part until the latter's obsession with generating larger-than-life passions by rehashing the Veer-Zaaraesque scenario -- lovers forced to stay apart over mandatory misunderstandings or foolish reasons (like in this one) relegate it to a not quite.

But for all its contrived elements and climatic predictability, Chopra Senior's swansong starts out with a spring in its step. Like in any film of this genre, the viewer is primarily concerned with just three things how they fall in love, what comes in their way and how they overcome those obstacles and get back, if they do, together.

Phase one goes about like a dream what with Anil Mehta's soap-washed, sparkling visuals. It's wintertime in London 2002 (although a clumsy detail reveals the recently hosted Olympics [ Images ] event in the city courtesy a prominent cut-out in the background) even as Shah Rukh Khan's [ Images ] Samar, a waiter and part-time singer and Katrina Kaif's [ Images ] rich heiress Meera banter and bond over few weeks of tuition.

He volunteers to teach her a Punjabi song as a birthday surprise for her daddy (Anupam Kher [ Images ] in a now-you-see-him-now-you-don't brand of appearance. The actor just vanishes without explanation in the second half). In return, she gives him a lesson in English Vinglish like the difference between constipation and conversation.

SRK-Katrina's brand new and torrid chemistry hits its peak during a fantastic dance duel against A R Rahman's [ Images ] thumping beats titled Ishq dance. And then comes the most authentic display of affection from an actor who's romanced a bevy of beauties in dozens of mushy flicks and famously refused to get intimate on screen. Although the spoiler is all over the internet, let's just stop at saying it involves Katrina's textbook pout.

The deed sure comes as a huge surprise and is likely to be talked about for days to come.

At this juncture, Jab Tak Hai Jaan is as pleasant as its visuals. One suspects the classic rich-poor divide to crop up at some point and create trouble in paradise but Aditya, instead opts for something sillier. His idea of romantic idealism and virtue forcefully surrenders Meera's 'gali ki gundi' spirit into an extreme example of a god-fearing soul to provide the plot with its most ludicrous twist. Her sentiments are exquisite but her logic is plain stupid making Meera quite impossible to root for.

JTHJ revives itself momentarily with Anushka's Band Baaja Baarat-reminiscent vivacity in complete sync with the cheerful scenery of once-again glorious Kashmir. She can call herself Akira or Godard for all I care but that's straight off Shruti Kakkar in a tomboy's wardrobe. Her unrestrained camaraderie with the somber, stubble-sporting army man SRK [ Images ] offers a playful contrast from the dreamy first act. How he develops this sudden switch in aptitude from foie gras to firearms is best not asked.

But by phase three of this romance, the screenplay has gone completely haywire and filled with a series of turnabouts that wouldn't look so out of place in a Manmohan Desai caper. The last half an hour meanders at a snail's pace and packs in one daft development after another. And I can't help agreeing with the man in the seat next to mine who remarked, 'Is this the uncut version?'

Length and logic aside, Jab Tak Hai Jaan makes up for Rahman's low on soul soundtrack with a subdued performance from SRK in a genre he knows by heart. While I personally preferred his rugged in uniform appearance and wounded recluse act better than the somewhat jaded lover boy strumming a guitar, he rises above the superficial in the most ordinary moments with his searching eyes that have clearly seen a lot and is coming to terms with a life gone by.

Although a Yash Chopra heroine is always a much-anticipated treat, Katrina is let down by a feebly written role and unimaginative, routine styling. Anushka definitely scores better.

Ultimately Jab Tak Hai Jaan is nothing more than lovely fluff that could have been shorter, snappier but is definitely worth watching once for the man whose name appears against the bright blue sky Mr Yash Chopra.

Rediff Rating:

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Posted: 13 November 2012 at 3:42am | IP Logged

The Jab Tak Hai Jaan review

In a perfect world, this film would have been called (Unending) Days Of Samar.

A bomb defusal expert who embraces fatality on a daily basis hoping he'll be blown to smithereens, Major Samar Anand is a stubbled Aviator-clad army-man who seems to like nothing better than tight black tee-shirts and singing folksy Punjabi songs in his quiet-time. And yet death, like a taxicab at rush hour, isn't easy to find when you want it. When you don't, on the other hand, it'll come along and bowl you right over.

That, in a nutshell, is the whole point of Jab Tak Hai Jaan, a Yash Chopra drama that treads very familiar territory slickly ' and a fair bit too slowly ' but does so with an old-world sincerity that somehow makes most of it bearable. Rather like its leading man, who is often made to balance entire scenes on his dimples, grinning so wide his eyes appear closed. There are times in Jab Tak Hai Jaan when it's hard not to feel embarrassed for Shah Rukh Khan having to work with material this tedious ' and yet he, despite the exaggerated show of youngness, manages inexplicably to charm. This is his film, and, against all odds, he works it well.

We open with his Samar ' first-name on badge, unlike any of his awed onlooking Army peers ' clinically disarming a bomb, then riding off through the hills on an Enfield and reading from a leatherbound journal. Loner. Got it. Then, as if enough time has been wasted on fatigues, Anushka Sharma emerges, strips off her clothes and plunges into the river, a course of action which thankfully leads away from her incessantly shrill character and heads toward Khan and Katrina Kaif.

Chopra always had a thing for the most luminous of heroines, and the exquisite Kaif, with her neo-classical face and her immaculate bearing, is clearly and unsurprisingly the girl this film centres around. Her Meera is a rich girl living in a caricatured London ' where even saucy dancing waitresses speak with a Hogwarts accent ' who spends her life earnestly bribing God with personal sacrifices: chocolates, fur coats, cigarettes. Khan, now a busker who wears checkered shirts and moonlights too much, agrees to teach her a Punjabi song if she teaches him English. Like a Lord, he says. She giggles.

Sure enough, her warbling is soon sloppily dubbed over with genuine vocals, while Khan's looking decidedly dapper in a tux. She's taught him how to say Salmon; he's made her forget how to pronounce Roger, the name of her fianc. Trouble is predictably around the corner. Oh, and somewhere in the middle of all these lessons, Katrina's learnt to dance, and this she does with such fluidity in an instrumental segment that it genuinely appears improvised. Even Khan, the most spirited dancer in our cinema, takes a backseat.

Borrowing little moments and ideas from many a Yash Chopra classic, this one plods on interminably, taking its time to tell us that every romance has to wait its turn. And clearly so must every intermission. The director, in a charming interlude, justifies and almost celebrates the idea of sincere, passionate infidelity, but soft-pedals drastically, as he picks one of our all-time warmest and most iconic on and off-screen couples for the job.

Despite his very name evoking a pleasant season, things soon get messy for Samar Anand. On one hand is a naive girl who believes in a vindictive god, and on the other is an overachieving girl with daddy issues. The latter, as played by Sharma, overacting to the hilt, is intolerably painful. I wanted to hurl something at this ridiculously hyper-chirpy thing, though something perhaps less cruel than Chopra's obvious step-daughterly treatment of her character, dressing her in bottom-flattening jeans and making her appear a complete dolt. And while Anushka can indeed play spunky, she needed here to tone it down several notches.

As did Chopra who, after a while, abandons all reason. Two London cops look at a bomb on a train, a man who refuses to identify himself shows up and bizarrely starts spouting specifics (about a bomb he can't see), and they step conveniently aside with a "maybe this guy knows what he's talking about." We don't look to a 183-minute melodrama for subtlety, but stuff like this is hard to look past. Especially when it is so easily fixed.

Katrina is the film's big surprise, providing a solidly competent performance in a role that could well have been reduced to farce. The lazy screenplay makes sure she kisses more than she gets to speak, which isn't a bad thing because she turns out pretty good with the silent moments. The actress brings a tenderness to the proceedings and emotes strongly, making sure her character ' while unlikely, untimely and irrational ' ends up real enough to root for.

And yet it's not her film. Or even Yash Chopra's, really. Jab Tak Hai Jaan is all Shah Rukh, all the time. His character seems larger than the film, and Khan himself is in fine form even when the script deserves far less. There are times he seems out of place, certainly, but these are made up for by times where he grounds the narrative with one glare, with one scowl, with one kiss. The dude abides.

As a swan-song for the master director, Jab Tak Hai Jaan might only be a middling effort. But then, sometimes, all we need is a Khan-song.

Rating: 3 stars

http://rajasen.com/



Edited by HotMess - 13 November 2012 at 3:41am

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Posted: 13 November 2012 at 4:15am | IP Logged
Finally watched JTHJ. And,Blue-Ice can vouch i m not Srk fan. I m Salman Khan fan,but i don't hate Srk for sure.

My view:- After watching movie,one thing i can say for sure Srk will always be the King of Romance. It's easily one of his best role after Chak de & Swadesh. after long time,he is looking so good in any movie. You can watch this movie just for him. 

Anushka Sharma was the surprise package of the movie. She is really adorable. I liked the chemistry between Srk & Anushka. They should do more movies together in future.

Katrina Kaif was not terrible (it's compliment). But She was easily the weak link of the movie. She was definitely looking beautiful,but come on one side we have Srk,King of expression & other side Katrina,Only one expression(may be two) throughout the movie. But she was good in the songs. 

It's easily yash Chopra ji's best work in my opinion. After long time,saw a good bollywood romantic movie.

Plus Point :- Srk, Anushka , Cinematography

Negative Point :- Katrina , Length of movie was too long.

Ratings :-  3.5/5...i wanted to give 4.5,but deducted one mark for Katrina Kaif.

I definitely recommend this movie...Thumbs Up.



Edited by nishu786 - 13 November 2012 at 4:16am

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Posted: 13 November 2012 at 4:21am | IP Logged
public reaction 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f_Zbvg5srBo&feature=youtu.be

looks like people like srkat Heart

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Posted: 13 November 2012 at 4:24am | IP Logged
Anupama Chopra's review: Jab Tak Hai Jaan
Anupama Chopra
November 13, 2012
First Published: 16:35 IST(13/11/2012)
Last Updated: 16:40 IST(13/11/2012)
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Jab Tak Hai Jaan
Direction:
Yash Chopra
Actors: Shah Rukh Khan, Katrina Kaif, Anushka Sharma
Rating: ***

In what world would a beautiful, fabulously rich girl who cruises around London in a chauffer-driven Bentley fall in love with a waiter? In Yash Chopra's world, of course!

It helps enormously that the waiter is played by Shah Rukh Khan with charm turned on high-beam. In any case, you don't go to a Yash Chopra movie to delve into realism or the messiness of relationships. You go to partake in a fantasy of swooning, idealised love - and Jab Tak Hai Jaan delivers plenty of that.

This film has all the elements you would want in a Yash Chopra film - gorgeously shot locations in the UK and Kashmir, lavish songs and three inherently noble lead characters who struggle gallantly against their individual obligations.

But what Jab Tak Hai Jaan does not have is a coherent plot. Through a series of unconvincing story twists, the waiter becomes a major in the army - a bomb-disposal expert, no less.

We first meet Samar Anand as he is about to defuse his 98th bomb. He does this without any protection and has therefore been dubbed the man who cannot die.

Another girl, a feisty filmmaker named Akira (played by Anushka Sharma), comes into his life, but another series of clumsy plot twists then takes him back to London, where his first love (played by Katrina Kaif), waits.

The story by Aditya Chopra is grossly over-written and borderline ridiculous. At one point, when Akira is looking for the major, she is told, 'Sir goes for quiet time after defusing a bomb.' The major is sitting by the river, singing loudly.

The Hurt Locker this certainly isn't. And yet, despite the wobbly narrative, Jab Tak Hai Jaan works as an ode to epic romance. I didn't buy into the story, but I bought into the heartfelt performances.

All three - Shah Rukh, Katrina and Anushka - are top-notch. And ladies, take note: Shah Rukh is easily Hindi cinema's most dashing army officer since Balraj Sahni in Haqeeqat, and with this film, he finally breaks his no-kissing rule.

You also have to admire his ability to play the romantic hero. We've seen him do it for two decades but he still makes it compelling.

Jab Tak Hai Jaan is too tangled to transport you. At almost 180 minutes, it also requires enormous patience. But I recommend that you see it. Because only Yash Chopra could make heartache so attractive and ennobling that his characters wear it like a badge of honor.

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Posted: 13 November 2012 at 4:28am | IP Logged

Film review: Jab Tak Hai Jaan

Love conquers all in the late director Yash Chopra's swan song

  • By Manjusha Radhakrishnan, Senior Reporter
  • Published: 15:13 November 13, 2012
  • Gulf News

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Your affection towards Jab Tak Hai Jaan is likely to be directly proportionate to your faith in love. If you happen to be a cynic in the matters of the heart (read pragmatic), then the much-anticipated Yash Chopra's directorial swan song will grate on your nerves. But for those who are willing to suspend belief for more than 170 minutes and stomach a weathered 47-year-old Shah Rukh Khan cavorting around as a 20-something, guitar-strumming lover, you are good and ready for Jab Tak Hai Jaan (As Long As I Am Alive).

The legendary filmmaker, who died last month, has stuck with his tried and tested formula of weaving fantastical love stories.

As always, there are intense lovers, beautiful London and Ladakh locales and bucket loads of emotions flying all around.

The first half of the film introduces you to the perky-yet-poor Samar (Khan) and a spoilt princess Meera (Katrina Kaif). His English is faulty and her grasp of Punajbi leaves a lot to be desired. An unlikely friendship (class no barrier) crops up and they decide on a barter deal. He will teach the UK-bred Meera a Punjabi song that she can impress her daddy dearest with on his birthday and she will teach him some posh English. But what they don't bargain for is to fall in love.

Article continues below

<a href="http://adtech.alnisrgroup.com/adlink/3.0/1348/4039108/0/170/ADTECH;loc=300;key=;kvlabel=;kvkeywords=film:movie:news;kvpublication=gulfnews;kvsubsection=film;" target="_blank"> <img src="http://adtech.alnisrgroup.com/adserv/3.0/1348/4039108/0/170/ADTECH;loc=300;key=;kvlabel=;kvkeywords=film:movie:news;kvpublication=gulfnews;kvsubsection=film;" border="0" width="300" height="250"> </a>

Sounds familiar? Well, that's because this story is old as the Swiss Alps featured in Chopra's epic romances.

Without giving the farm away, Meera, who has a propensity to make juvenile deals with the almighty, strikes a seemingly ludicrous deal with God when Samar's life takes a near-fatal twist. The London-educated, empowered business heiress turns into this simpering, sacrificial lover.

However, the second of half of the film in which Khan plays the tortured lover and a fearless bomb disposal army leader in Ladakh redeems the romance. For starters he acts his age and his brooding turn is supported well by Akira (Anushka Sharma), an ambitious journalist who is on a mission to trace a man who has defused more than 100 bombs. The transformation of how the happy-go-lucky waiter Samar becomes a brave soldier is left to our imagination.

Sharma steals the show with her bold act. If you were to compare the two women: Kaif plays the archetypal ethereal, unattainable Yash Raj heroine, however it's difficult to relate to her and her child-like beliefs. Sharma's character was more grounded and modern. In the end, don't beat yourself if you find yourself rooting for Samar and Akira who enjoy fabulous chemistry rather than the born-to-be-together soulmates Meera and Samar.

Once again, Khan lives up to his description of being the king of on-screen romance. Trust him to make star-crossed lovers look fashionable. Watch Jab Tak Hai Jaan if you are in the mood for an never-say-never love saga.

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First public response video: http://bit.ly/PRdV8M  Everybody is loving the film & we love that! Keep all your tweets coming in! #JTHJ

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Jab Tak Hai Jaan has taken fabulous start at the box office. Morning shows registered 80-90%+ occupancy all India. Many shows across all centers reported Sold OutHousefull boards are seen even in places where it is unusual. 

So, how is the report after Noon shows. Noon shows have also held well at places. Noon shows registered an occupancy of 75-80%+ all India. Even many Sold Out shows reported for Noon shows. But from Evening shows, JTHJ has registered a drop of 10-50% on average across Cinemas. Drop is pretty normal as Puja is to be held. Still average occupancy for the Evening and Night shows should be in the range of 50-60% which will be pretty good. Expect huge numbers for day one as report will start coming from distributors/theater owners. Big First Day at Box Office on cards for Jab Tak Hai Jaan. Word of Mouth is positive for the film and coming days will alsogoing to give huge numbers at the box office. Diwali time for Bollywood Box Office.

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