I’ve always left the theatre a little confused after watching an Imtiaz Ali movie; always questioned whether I’ve liked it or not. There’d be something really good and something that just doesn’t make sense. But for the first time, I’m certain of how Harry met Sejal is. It is a badly conceived movie.
How I wished for a sad ending to make little sense of the story. But hey, the director assumes we all want a happy ending, right?
How I wanted a wee bit extra sadness, a little more pain to allow myself to feel as to why is Harry like this? For the puzzle to fit, on why Harry had to meet a Sejal, just doesn’t get answered! But that’s not the only problem for this movie. There’s just lack of depth in the story. Except in two characters’ chemistry. The only saving grace.
But how far do you think that can steer a story which is going nowhere but to the usual clichéd ending of most of Imtiaz’ movies. Sure, there’s a good dose of realism and few scenes just hit you real hard without being grand. The brooding Shahrukh is unmatchable and so is the ‘layak’ Anushka, both of them capture the nuance of their characters perfectly. But. Yes, and a big B.U.T. There’s just nothing else there in the movie! A couple of scenes, once-in-a-while, is all that’s good about the movie.
Being a movie where the tour guide is the main protagonist and the entire movie is shot in Europe, there’s hardly much of Europe that the lens captures. Maybe taking a leaf out of Zoya Akhtar’ ZNMD would have helped? But hey, Imtiaz wants to stick to his own formula of loving someone who is about to get married! How many more times should we be watching that same damn thing?
Songs get added to the movie out of no reason. There’s an entire addition to Harry’s colleague’ wedding, which is just not required. The only possible explanation for that is to make Shahrukh wear a turban and touch upon his ‘Punjabi roots’. A flashback on the same which doesn’t pan out into anything substantial again adds to the irrelevancy.
The story follows a boring direction which Imtiyaz has taken us on numerous occasions.
Shahrukh Khan embraces Harry and so does Anushka Sharma in being the Gujju-accented girl out to search for her ring. As stupid as the idea of her finding it across countries is how she finally ends up getting it back!
The script is stupid and if it weren’t for the two stars in the movie, would appear like written in a hurry. And it’s only because of them, I’m giving a 2 star to this film. Watch it only if you’re a fan or a weekend with nothing else to do.
Maniparna Sengupta Majumder
Nice review. Pithy and precise.