‘Befikre’ movie review: A cutting-edge love story with familiar classic feels

Befikre Aditya Chopra
Rating: 3 out of 5

‘Befikre’ movie review: A cutting-edge love story with familiar classic feels

Ranveer Singh and Vaani Kapoor

Directed by: Aditya Chopra
Produced by: Aditya Chopra
Cast: Ranveer Singh, Vaani Kapoor
Duration: 2 hours 12 minutes
Bollywood Bubble Rating: 3/5

A guy and a girl meet while tripping across Europe, only to discover first a bizarre friendship, and then undefined love in each other. Cut to 2016. A guy and a girl, carefree, youthful and vibrant, meet at Paris and a love story with its antiques follows. While ‘Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge’ went on to become cult, ‘Befikre’ is rather more urban, new-age and refreshing in its approach. Writing ‘Befikre’ movie review gets difficult as it is different from every YRF film so far, and yet stunningly similar.

Dharam (Ranveer Singh), a stand-up comedian, flies to Paris to join his friend in his business venture wherein he meets Shyra (Vaani Kapoor), a pretty lady in her twenties, Indian by origin and French by heart and soul. They’re fun-loving, they do not want to captivate love by calling it names, they are free-spirited and do not fear to call it quits. They do fall in love eventually, but only to find differences and split.  A few days later, you find Shyra desperately seeking emotional solace everywhere while Dharam narrates his heartbreak at his ‘Comedy Nights’. Meanwhile enters Anay (Armaan Ralhan), the suited, booted, dapper anti-hero in Dharam’s already-struggling love stint. All Aditya Chopra fans must be smirking now, for you know what follows, and how!

Ranveer Singh is one impeccable man we know. ‘Befikre’ has explored his antiques like almost no other film did. He is lustful, mischievous, flirtatious, but look at him carefully, and you’d know a subtle, loving soul is lying inside. He is imperfect, and is in love with his own imperfection. He is your 4 am friend, he is the kind of guy you just can’t hate.  Aditya Chopra, in all his films, has only roped in Shah Rukh Khan so far. This is the very first time that he goes on to experiment with someone else, and the choice was wise, very wise. We now know why he had Ranveer in mind even before he started writing the screenplay.

‘Shuddh Desi Romance’ wasn’t the ideal debut one would dream of; neither did Vaani Kapoor. After three years of hiatus and with a drastically different appearance, ‘Befikre’ must not have been an easy task for her. But no lying, we were wrong to have underestimated her. Matching with Ranveer’s level of energy and enthusiasm is no cakewalk.  Vaani is expressive, and noticeable. Not to forget her smooth grooves!

The film as well introduces Armaan Ralhan. Despite enough chances of being overshadowed, Armaan’s character is the catalyst that helps Dharam and Shyra’s proximity.

More than anyone else, ‘Befikre’ is the biggest shift of genre for director Aditya Chopra. Chopra, whose films are otherwise intense and classic in approach, has gone ahead to draw a no strings attached love story on the backdrop of Paris and its outgoing, sensuous vision of life. Looking from the perspective of a middle-aged Indian couple away from the smell of their own land for decades now, ‘Befikre’ is also a polite reflection of how the mind goes back to its roots. Thus, Shyra makes herself a piece of aloo paratha when she is down, her mom (Ayesha Raza Mishra) picks up a wine bottle in absence of the belan, and Friday night destination is of course a Bollywood night party!

Cinematographer Kaname Onoyama and production designer Anne Siebel have done a beautiful job together. Paris isn’t a mere location in ‘Befikre’. With its beaming lights and ever-happening moments of love, it has become a living character.  Somewhere, love prevails. Somewhere, heartbreak does. The city, loud in its own mesmerising silence, smiles.

Namrata Rao’s editing is neat and apt. Vishal and Shekhar together have created songs that are situational, while Jaideep Sahani’s lyrics compliment their effectiveness. Aditya Chopra and co-writer Sharad Katariya have written crisp, witty dialogues.

However, the film, from the beginning, is a predictable one. You can assume how it is going to unfold, and you can anticipate the moments. And the makers make no deliberate attempts of removing the YRF touch from it. So, when Ranveer Singh plays ‘Mehndi lagake rakhna’ on a trumpet, you break into a grin. Like every other time, you know you will come out with a smile.

Lend it a watch. You won’t regret!

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