Cocktail is youthful, jazzy and for Gen X

Movie Review: Cocktail

Cast: Saif Ali Khan, Deepika Padukone, Diana Penty, Boman Irani, Dimple Kapadia and Randeep Hooda

Music: Pritam

Script: Imtiaz Ali

Director: Homi Adjania

Rating: Three stars

Homi Adjania’s Cocktail, co-written by Imtiaz Ali and starring Saif Ali Khan, Deepika Padukone and newcomer Diana Penty in the lead roles may not be the most remembered rom-com of 2012. Indeed, the movie suffers from flaws, particularly in the second half but it successfully strike a chord with the young generation. Let me put it that way: If the first half is riveting and absorbing, the second half isn’t. But there is no denying the fact that the mov successfully depicts the uber cool relationships of the Gen X urban youth and strengthen the bond of friendship. Despite its flaws, I would say that Cocktail is successful as it reflects our love stories and friendship.

Cocktail is the story of Gautam (Saif Ali Khan), Veronica (Deepika Padukone) and Meera (Diana Penty). Meera, the typical Indian girl is ditched by her husband in London and meet the wild Veronica in the washroom and the latter invites her to stay in her apartment. Enter the care free, Gautam who is Veronica latest and live-in boy friend and both indulges in a sizzling and no string attached relationship. In the start, Meera hates Gautam but later they become good friends and eventually fall in love. Cocktail is about friendship between Gautam, Veronica and Meera and how love screws* up their whole scene. It’s very much the contemporary relationship dilemna that our generation goes through.

Cocktail has an absorbing first half as I mentioned earlier. Credit goes to Homi Adjania for keeping the viewer glued to its seat. Imtiaz Ali co-scripted the film and like Socha Na Tha, Jab We Met and Love Aaj Ka, his biggest forte is his dialogue. His writing is hilarious and the viewer wants more from him. However, both the script and screenplay suffer in the second half. It becomes tad complicated as the relationship between Gautam and Veronica drastically shift from no drama and no strings attached to a heavy emotional dose. The movie doesn’t deserve it since the entire premise is built on a light and cool tone. The scene where Deepika’s character indulges in some serious drama may befit the 70s but is totally uncalled for in 2012. Moreover, the character played by Randeep Hooda could have been easily chopped off on the editing table. The film also suffers from a lack of pace in the second half.

However, the biggest forte of Cocktail is the well etched characters of Gautam, Veronica and Meera. The roles have been well-written and beautifully developed to suit the sensibilities of today’s youth. Saif fits the bill as the care free, urbane and metrosexual guy and carries it with utmost ease. He simply shines in the role. The actor is made for such kinda roles like he did in movies like Dil Chahta Hai, Salaam Namaste, Love Aaj Kal, Hum Tum and Kal Ho Na Ho. Plus, the chemistry exuded between him and Deepika make up for the flaws in the screenplay post-interval. Deepika Padukone is the surprise package. She goes with the flow and passively let the script and her director take her in the driving seat and is fabulous. She will be nominated at the filmfare award for best actress. Newbie Diana Penty gets a very difficult role and that too in her debut film. It’s a huge burden to carry. She is beautiful and impresses with the innocence displayed. Boman Irani is simply amazing as an actor and is a treat to watch him perform. Dimple Kapadia as the loud ‘Punjabi’ is impressive.Homi Adjania attempted a rom-com and impresses with the portrayal of the magnificent visuals and well etched characters. If only, he had worked with Imtiaz Ali on the second half, Cocktail would have find its way among the best movies of 2012. On the whole, kudos for striking the right chord with India’s youth.

Despite the shortcomings mentioned above, I would say go for Cocktail since it’s a honest attempt to depict the relationship snags of today’s youth and it will cement your bond of friendship. It has a certain magic as it plies to the young generation. It’s our love story and friendship. How I wish I could have given four stars but only three for the slow paced second half.

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