U; Romance drama
Dirrector: Vivek Agnihotri
Cast: Pulkit Samrat, Yami Gautam, Hrishitaa Bhatt, Gulshan Devaiah
This is one more addition to the zillions of love stories that Bollywood churns out each year. The Romeo is Army captain, Jahan (Pulkit Samrat), who sports a puffed hairstyle with one strand of hair near his temple refusing to gel with the rest — it stands out almost throughout the film. The Juliet is Suhani (Yami Gautam), a spitfire collegian, who courts trouble for being at the wrong place at the wrong time. She comes from a typical, large Punjabi family which dotes on her.
Despite gossip about the lead pair’s off-screen romance, there is no smouldering chemistry between them
Love blooms when Mr Romeo rescues her from one of her daredevil acts that sparks a security concern. Their eyes meet, poetry flows and after some song and dance celebrating Christmas and Holi, it is time to part. The two, however, are unable to make the audience connect to their tale of love and longing.
Junooniyat’s plot is banal and trite. A few reels in and you can safely hazard a guess on what will happen next. Despite gossip about the lead pair’s off-screen romance, there is no smouldering chemistry between them.
It also appears that the makers were confused about the setting of the film. Juliet declares that she is from Amritsar — the land from where Navjot Singh Sidhu and Kapil Sharma hail. So, there is this sense of present times, but at the same time, the lovebirds indulge in old-world romance, penning their thoughts on paper and Juliet even stacks love notes in a box. At other times, she is darting off SMSes to her Romeo. This makes the story even more contrived. Add to this an assortment of typical characters who don’t want the lovers to meet, and a few others who want them to. The film also features Gulshan Devaiah and Hrishitaa Bhatt, who do their bit to unite the lovers.
Writer-director Vivek Agnihotri seems to have put in a lot of efforts to come up with good production values — there are some picturesque locations and detailing of the regions where the film has been shot, including the costume department, seem bang on. But the bright and colourful phulkari dupattas of Punjab sadly cannot stop the film from being lacklustre.