When your previous film was a runaway success, how does one shoulder the burden of it? We'll suggest in Imtiaz Ali's style.
Love Aaj Kal begins with how a Boy and Girl meet, have a breezy year long affair and then decide to go for a break-up and to top that they have a break-up party. One of the most obnoxious things we would have heard, but dealt in the most hilarious manner. All of this in 20 minutes flat. This pace may confuse you a bit but you will soon realise this pace reflects today's day and age.
You begin to know more of Jai, an architect by profession and aspire to work at the Golden Gate in San Francisco and Meera who wants to join an art restoration project in India. They both are fun, perky, confident and above all "practical", who have mapped what they want in life. And this is exactly the reason for their amicable separation. From lovers to ex-lovers who are extremely comfortable with their status and each other, so much so that they can go on to list all things wrong in each other and still have a good laugh. While the casualness of this present-day romance is in contrast to the romance of Veer Singh who befriends Jai post his break-up party which was catered by Veer. And then as the name suggests Love Aaj Kal the love story of Veer's Kal and Jai's Aaj run parallel and yet amalgamate beautifully. Both the stories have their ups and downs and how their love story reaches its climax and to the climax of the film is quite interesting.
The film goes on to prove the power of love in its own way and is gripping till the end. It doesn't begin where you think it does and doesn't end where most stories do, making it unusual piece of writing.
Imtiaz Ali has done some stupendous writing and wondrous direction. One of the proofs would be the way he has justified Saif playing the younger Veer. He is a pro at story- telling and extracting fine performances and it's no different even with this film.
Both Saif and Deepika are convincing as Jai and Meera. Saif has pulled of an astounding act as urbane, flirty, idiotic, confused Jai and is likeable as the younger Veer too. Deepika has enacted way beyond her previous roles. Rishi Kapoor is the eternal lover boy and is cute and adorable in the film.
The girl who plays (Florence something...) Harleen Kaur has a smile that reminds you of yesteryear actress Mumtaz and looks surreal. The costumes for all the characters look apt and Deepika's clothes by Anahita Shroff Adajania's are simply stunning.
The dialogues of the film surpass most other elements of the film. The music by Pritam is a good mix ranging from soft romantic ones to disco numbers and takes the narrative forward but can't be called everlasting. The cinematography enhances the landscape of London, Delhi, San Francisco, and Calcutta (not Kolkata) in the film.
All in all this film makes you fall love with the idea of falling in love all over again.
Caution: Do not enter the cinema hall with Jab We Met like expectation. You'll enjoy the film a tad bit better.