Although Ayan Mukerji’s Yeh Jawaani Hain Deewani illustrated an eclectic mix of moralistic themes, which impacted children and adults, the ultimately regressive nature of the film undermines the strength of its core message.
The film depicts the dramatic transformation of the effervescent Kabir Thapar (Ranbir Kapoor), also known as Bunny, who simply cannot stand the idea of stagnancy. His ideal lifestyle is to venture to every corner of the world, surviving only on life’s intoxication. Along his way, he meets Naina (Deepika Padukone), a studious and timid girl who has never indulged in all that life has to offer. How they affect each other is what constructs the basic premise of the film.
Despite the potential of the film as a coming-of-age twist on a classic love story between two completely opposite individuals, its hackneyed portrayal of such a theme deprives it of being a memorable movie. In fact, I found myself looking at my watch too often, wondering how much longer this specific scene would last. Amidst all the elements that inherently comprise a Karan Johar film, including a larger-than-life wedding and several quirky dance numbers, however, there were a few portions of the film that did in fact bring a smile to my face or a tear in my eye.
For instance, when the two protagonists stood atop a snow-covered mountain, which resembled the Himalayas, and simply screamed, it made me want to stand up and join them. As a youngster, seeing that kind of liberty was extremely relatable. On the other hand, the affectionate dialogues between Farooq Sheikh, who plays Kabir’s father, and Ranbir Kapoor reminded my mom of her father, as well as her relationship with me. This duality of emotion salvaged the film from its excessive duration, in addition to the extremely enjoyable performance by Madhuri Dixit that left you craving for more dance.
Overall, the film may have strived to assert the importance of family, home and friends by illustrating the distancing ramifications of Kabir’s traveling proclivity, but its truly regressive undertones are what left it only with three stars, in my opinion.
The fact that Kabir was able to roam around, having countless liaisons with several girls from all over the world, only to, at the perfect age, come back home and settle down with an innocent, diligent, and virginal doctor like Naina, fails to impress the audience with the significance of family and home, instead showcasing exactly how an ideal desi male life should be lived: have fun and be free till thirty, and then come home to start a life with a decent girl. This regressive and disappointing message confused and contaminated the overall concept of the film, and left me wondering what the film was even trying to show. Siddharth Kapoor Roy and Kalki as Ranbir’s friends are very good. Why his friend becomes a drunkard nobody knows. By the way, parents are absolutely missing in this movie. I mean, where are Kalki’s parents in the wedding? I cannot imagine any big event in my life without my parents being there. I know Ayan Mukherji is a young director but ignoring parents is ignoring your joy.
Overall, the movie Yeh Jawani Hain diwani is enjoyable, entertaining and definitely worth a watch. Clear of any violence and dialogues that are vulgar or insulting, movie is safe for kids. Fast paced songs and beautiful lead actors make it visually pleasing. And there is Madhuri’s item number that for a change does not reek with Sheela ki jawani, jandu balms and murg masalas! In fact it has beautiful steps and beautiful expressions by the queen of bollywood dance. I did not like her choice of ghagrahs as they were too shiny and bright for my taste but that could be due to the nature of her profession in the film. Ranbir matched her steps exquisitely. Don’t miss out on this as it comes in the first 10 minutes of the movie! Deepika is lovely and acted very well, in fact even better than Ranbir. Kudos to her!