Film Review: Befikre
Produced by: Yashraj Films
Director: Aditya Chopra
Cast: Ranveer Singh, Vaani Kapoor, Armaan Ralhan, Akarsh Khurana and Ayesha Raza
Rating: Three and a half stars
The narration of love and its changing equation has altered, right from the time of Laila-Majni, Sohni-Mahival, Maine Pyar Kiya, Qayamat Se Qayamat tak echoing tales of Romeo and Juliet to the epic Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge. Aditya Chopra’s latest flick Befikre presents carefree love in an effortless manner where he taps the pulse of the Indian Youth which is never shy in daring to bare and kiss openly. It was two decades back in the mid-90s where he made love a sacred devotion in DDLJ. At one shot, Befikre is jazzy, sensuous, light-hearted and a celebration of life that will find resonance with Gen X. It’s an appealing adventure that boast of stunningly beautiful cinematographic values that plays live, imitating real life to near perfection. Full marks to Adi Chopra for crafting an ode to today’s youth. Comparisons are bound to happen with which is arguably one of the most beautiful love stories ever told in the history of Hindi cinema, DDLJ but love never remain static and is an ever-evolving equation.
The film rolls with the breakup of the live-in couple, Dharam (Ranveer Singh) a pucca Dilliwala dude doing stand-up comedy in France with Shyra (Vani) who throws away the new idiot box out of the apartment. She is called a slut by her ex-boyfriend. Cut to flashback, both meet in a party, have fun, smooching and sleep together without the ‘stupid love or baby’ thing.
The main lead, Ranveer Singh-Vani Kapoor boast of tremendous chemistry for their first outing together where both enraptures the audience in this tale of romance. The best thing is that both actors are bold, never shy of experimenting with promiscuity and complement each other with elan in every single frame. Ranveer is effortless as Dharam where the role fits his easy-going real life character like a glove, taking the cosmopolitan and metrosexual guy to another level. Vani is super hot, lethal and her confidence comes across as today’s independent woman-cum-new age girl. The role gels well with her and she comes effortlessly living up to the character. Guys will swoon over Vani as Shyra. Both actors push the envelope further to up the hotness quotient to a searing level.
The first half is absorbing and gripping in this mellifluous narrative that hooks, be it the effortless dialogues, the chemistry between the actors and the adventurous dares that make it too real to be true. The dialogues are fantastic and reflect the changing mores with a new and urban in-your-face gen who is increasingly practical in matters of the heart. Even the second half of the film has been tastefully and aesthetically shot, tapping the subdued conflict between the main protagonists and never for once, the film falls into the trap of overdramatic or heavy gestures.
Befikre is a very fresh film made by Yashraj films and Aditya Chopra proves why he is still one of the best storytellers who completely nails this rendition of romance. He got it right this time in striking a chord with today’s modern youth, in telling their tales of hooking up, love, sex and break up. The naughty, witty and relatable dialogues are central to the plot and never loses its flavor throughout the narration.
The film has several high moments, be it shopping for cornflake, Dharam sharing an apartment with two gori lesbians with whom he fantasizes of making out or doing Karaoke singing retro Hindi songs in the pub with Vani and Anya (Armaan) which is the real icing on the cake. There is a child-like innocence in Ranveer and Vani that pulls the audience in this fast paced and engaging rom-com. The scene where Vani steps in the green bikini showcases her mettle and doesn’t spare the camera that falls for her charm. She is the Goddess incarnate of flamboyance, sexuality, and style.
However, the film does a flip-flop with the typical Punjabi wedding in Paris that can’t help us draw a parallel with DDLJ and the whole predictable end of the one-night stand lovers hitching. It slightly departs from the original theme of kiss and don’t tell. Secondly, the bold theme may not find resonance with the family audience that may work against the box office fortune or for that matter, it looks at times like a travel documentary showcasing the beautiful France.
Having said that, Befikre is the film to watch this festive season for it is riveting, soulful and is the millennial slogan of romance and boldness but at the same time lending it so much dignity, careful not to sink into vulgarity. Adi Chopra deserves full credit for twisting his DDLJ which is revisited in the climax scene between Vani and her Mother who tells her, it’s France and not India for she will get away for breaking the marriage or ghee smeared aloo ke pharanthe. The songs are a sheer delight and pictured beautifully, be it Nashe si chad gayi kudi that showcases the Ranveer-Vani chemistry, Ude dil Befikre or the opening Labon ka Karobar celebrating the open fest of kissing in all its forms and substance. The film never loses its steam in the entire narration. It is fast-paced, thrillingly refreshing and totally carefree. A breezy appeal capturing the fastidious new age Mills-and-Boon retold to capture the fancy of the audience in a lively and electrifying manner. A must watch for the young carefree generation and totally Paisa vasool.