LONDON PARIS NEW YORK
LONDON PARIS NEW YORK (LPNY) is under two hours long; its lead actors Ali Zafar and Aditi Rao Hydari are in every frame of the movie (almost); they get to speak all the dialogues in the movie and this contributes to no small measure in the movie turning out to be … well, I am afraid you will have to read a little more to get a hang of what I felt about the movie!
LPNY is a sort of family venture with members of one family (rather, two families) playing dominant roles. Goldie Behl (son of Ramesh Behl, who produced the hugely successful college romance JAWANI DIWANI about 40 years back) is the producer; his sister Srishti Arya is the co-producer and her husband Samir Arya is the cinematographer. The other family is that of the Pakistani actor Ali Zafar: he besides being the lead actor is also the lyric writer, the music director and singer. I can’t recall any person other than Kishore Kumar who filled in all these roles!
If one wants to criticize director Anu Menon’s directorial debut, there could be a good number of areas. The story sounds hollow and is not plausible; the foreign locales are not absolutely relevant, the cinematographer could have used better looking backgrounds while shooting in places like London, Paris and New York. The prudes would add that the kissing sequences were not really necessary (they would have felt better if they had been shown two flowers at close proximity to convey the kiss!) and a number of critics would perhaps feel that movies such as these are for urban multiplex audiences and therefore would not be a box-office success.
I would tend to agree wholly with the last observation, disagree wholly with the prudes and somewhat agree with the rest of the comments. But despite these observations, it must be mentioned that LPNY exudes a certain type of freshness not seen often in Bollywood and the chemistry of Ali Zafar and Aditi Rao is sizzling. This is Aditi’s first film as a lead actress and she carries out her role with consummate perfection. Ali Zafar, who has been recently seen in MERE BROTHER KI DULHAN is just as outstanding; his playful mannerisms remind one of what Shah Rukh Khan displayed during his early days. The songs composed and sung by Ali Zafar are peppy and fit very well in the ambience; the director’s outstanding achievement is in not allowing distractions to come in the way of storytelling, keeping the length short and having the minimum number of characters on the screen. That allows her to define the lead characters with a lot of depth and execute the scenes to near perfection. Even the ending does not look contrived!!
So what if LPNY does not have the best shots of London, Paris and New York; it envelopes you with that fresh feeling which will stay with you after the credits start rolling!
RATING: 3.5 out of 5
March 2, 2012