Movie Review: Shaandaar

Should you be headed to the theatres to watch this Shahid Kapoor-Alia Bhatt starrer? Read City 1016's Lokesh Dharmani's verdict
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Movie Review: Shaandaar
A still from Shaandaar

Shahid Kapoor

Read more about Shahid Kapoor

DIRECTOR: Vikas Bahl
STARRING: Shahid Kapoor, Alia Bhatt, Pankaj Kapur, Sanah Kapur, Sanjay Kapoor, Sushma Seth
RATING:  2 stars

Hi, I am Shaandaar.
I am produced by Dharma Productions. So I am pretty. And pretty pointless.
But hey, I am also produced by Phantom, the poster production of all things real. So I apply Fevicol on my hands and peel it off in the name of OMG such a real moment. I also dip biscuits in milk and think of my mom…awww so cute;....and hold imaginary cups of chai in the middle of the night and discuss my fears, like how I am scared of the darkness.  I so badly want to come across as real, that I might even discuss the price of kanda/batata/bhindi/baingan and take off my makeup and shift from Scotland to Sarojini.
But Karan Johar reprimands me, so I slip back into my designer clothes and sing wedding/disco songs with full gusto. In the same breath I talk about feelings, emotions and living life, to keep Anurag Kashyap and his brigade of real filmmakers happy.
So basically, I am confused. I am so torn between Dharma and Phantom that instead of Shaandaar, I would rather be called Kabhi Prada Kabhi Fab India.
The Aroras and Fundwanis are bankrupt, you know the Karan Johar-films kind of bankruptcy, that throws stretch limos, fancy clothes and a destination wedding at you so lavishly that you badly long to be bankrupt soon.
To save their financial problems, the families decide to go for a merger and get their kids married, without quite knowing the sorry monetary situations of the other!
The families display such specimens. The bride is fat, the groom has eight and a half pack abs, the bride’s sister is an orphan and an insomniac, they have two uncles; one is sleazy, the other is effeminate, their mom is khadoos, the grand mom is maha khadoos and they also have twin cousin sisters who goes OMG, LOL, ROFL at every given opportunity. These characters would make sense if they were written to tell a story. There is no story. There are only caricatures.
The film tries to get all preachy about fat people, that everyone has feelings and all that. But the same film also made a string of gay-fashion-designer-rich-blingy-show-off-Sindhis-small-eyed-Chinese-Japanese jokes. It’s then a trifle hard to take this movie seriously.  
Dil Dhadakne Do did it so much better. That movie had personality traits, characters who despite looking super gorgeous on a yacht had fears, follies and frustrations.    
Everything that happens in Shaandaar is of little (I am being polite) or of no importance or consequence. The leading lady is Ms. Google. Why? We have no clue. May be it’s a joke on Alia’s image that evokes no laughs. Her did-you-know fun facts are such a waste of breath. Check this out- ‘A snail can sleep for three years.’ Or. ‘Chocolates have feet of eight insects.’  Ewww!! Yes, I lost my breakfast into my nachos. But she does her job well; looks gorgeous and enjoys an envious wardrobe and a foreign holiday.
Shahid Kapoor’s character is as deep. It’s deeper than the water he cleverly observes as wet, a joke we cracked in sixth standard.
Pankaj Kapoor is adorable in the film. The chemistry between him and Shahid, no matter how forced is endearing. Forced? Let me exemplify. In a fun banter, Shahid Kapoor tells Panjak, ‘hey it’s different.’ It makes no sense. It’s just a reference to Pankaj Kapoor’s ketchup ad with Javed Jaffery- Maggie, hot and sweet tomato sauce, it’s different! Yes, far-fetched has a boundary too. The writers have crossed that!
There is a scene in the film where everyone consumes mushrooms and brownies, the combination that causes delirium in people. I guess the writers ate just that when they scripted the film. Except you think Chaalbaaz did it so brilliantly in that madcap song Seeti Baj Gayi.
Amit Trivedi has done a fabulous job once again and the film's music is brilliant. The father daughter scene between Pankaj and Alia is also written well. And Sanah Kapoor is beautiful and shows promise.
Besides that I can’t think of anything in the movie that stayed with me. Oh yes, there is one thing. Towards the end a gun is delivered at the wedding (don’t ask) in a delivery van that reads FedUp. I loved how the director read my mind!!


5 stars: Loved it. (This could make to top ten movies you must watch before you die!) 
4 stars: Liked it. Recommend it. (This will help you sound intellectual and give you stuff to add at water cooler conversations.)
3 stars: Didn’t hurt. Watch it once. 
2 stars: It put me to sleep. Watch it if you are an insomniac or a newly wedded couple. Winks!
1 star: Do I even need to explain this?