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Fanaa movie review

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Cast Aamir Khan, Kajol, Tabu, Shiney Ahuja    more...
Director Kunal Kohli
Romance / Comedy / Drama / Thriller / General.

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The Fanaa Movie Review

Falls short of expectation
By Naresh Kumar Deoshi
Rating: 0.5/5

Had it not been for the star value, the hype and the acting performances, 'Fanaa' would have fallen flat under the weight of poor writing and mediocre direction by Kunal Kohli. The film eventually stays just a notch above being a mere timepass flick.

The movie, so grandly promoted by Yash Raj Films, neither provokes thought nor jars the senses. It as much stirs you gently, strikes an emotive chord now and then, and leaves you unsatisfied and wondering what the heck was all the brouhaha about.

Even if I discount the apparent lack of subtlety that Kunal has shown in telling the story - which had the potential of a great movie - it is hard to overlook the obvious stereotypes and unbelievable action scenes (the gun-battle, choppers crashing down from the sky) that give the movie a look of pulpy fiction. Add to this the sub-plot involving the nuclear threat and a number of uncalled-for songs.

But, what makes 'Fanaa' watchable is Aamir Khan and Kajol, both of who rise above the limitations of the script and show glimpses of their histrionic genius.

The movie opens in the Kashmir valley, with Sare Jahan Se Achcha being played on santoor as the camera establishes the setting with panoramic shots of lakes, snow laden landscape and pheran-clad locals.

Immediately, Kajol's character Zooni Ali Beg is introduced saluting to a Tri-color she cannot see and has to be nudged in the right direction by her mother (Kiron Kher). Ok, point taken. Zooni is blind and patriotic.

Then, quite unsubtly and portentously, Zooni's doting father Zulfikar (Rishi Kapoor) doles out to his daughter a piece of wisdom that eventually decides the fate of Fanaa's story. And the wisdom is - it is easy to choose between right or wrong. What is difficult is to choose the better one of the two rights or the lesser of the two evils.

Having established this point also, the movie, sort of, hurries to steer into the love lane as Zooni leaves for Delhi with a bunch of friends to perform at the Rashtrapati Bhavan on the Republic day. No footage is given to establish Zooni's character in depth.

In Delhi, the girls' tour guide is Rehan (Aamir Khan), a colourful, joyful, flirtatious young man with a poetic line or a couplet for every situation.

For Rehan, at least, it is love at first sight when he comes across Zooni. A bit of romantic shayari by Rehan elicits a few befitting couplets from Zooni also, and we know that seeds of love have been sown in both Zooni and Rehan's hearts.

The obvious love angle and romantic track follows next, with Rehan admitting to Zooni that he only believes in fulfilling his necessities and doesn't believe in emotions. Zooni says she only believes in love, and those very words stir something inside Rehan.

At the inevitable moment of parting (when Zooni leaves for Kashmir), Rehan takes the crucial decision and literally carries Zooni in his arms out of the train.

The two decide to get married and Zooni's parents too agree to her choice. Before marriage, Zooni undergoes an eye-operation that restores her sight. But the first she sees of Rehan are his tattered, burnt clothes. Rehan dies in a terrorist attack.

Enters Tyagi (Tabu) a special agent with the Anti-Terrorist Unit. According to her, the bomb blast is the handiwork of a very clever planner, someone who stays in the shadows and whose identity no one knows. And the next aim of the terrorists (belonging to IKF) is to steal a gadget that triggers off a nuclear missile or a bomb, material for which the IKF has already stolen.

And it turns out that the henchman of IKF is none other than Rehan, who is still alive.

To tell the further story would be spoiling the suspense. But it can be said that Rehan and Zooni meet once again, but she is not able to recognize him as he 'died' before she regained her sight.

What follows next throws the two lovers into emotional turmoil. Zooni eventually has to make a choice and she chooses the lesser of the two evils.

Thankfully, the movie doesn't go into Pak bashing. The terrorist outfit (IKF) is shown as led by a man intent on creating an independent Kashmir by liberating both PoK and Indian Kashmir.

Having said that, 'Fanaa' essentially remains a love story of Zooni and Rehan. Aamir and Kajol show few sparks of brilliance and create an incredible chemistry between their characters. Kajol's performance is particularly superb when Rehan returns to her life and she suspects and senses something familiar about him. Aamir, as expected, delivers a noteworthy performance. The frivolous flirt of the first half (the tour guide) credibly transforms into a serious, stern-looking terrorist camouflaged as an army man in the second half.

No doubts about it, 'Fanaa' works because of Aamir and Kajol.

On the sidelines, Kiron Kher and Rishi Kapoor are natural. Tabu's dialogue delivery has a hint of her Hyderabadi background, and that is a downer. Lara Dutta and Shiney Ahuja appear in cameos of few seconds.

The main fault of 'Fanaa' happens to be its script. The shayari in the first half is a bit overdone. Even the dialogues are a bit too filmi than real. And in the second half, the lines given to Kajol's son are poorly written, ineffective and lack subtlety. Kunal Kohli has not been able to extract a performance out of the child artist and most of the sequences involving him end up looking superficial.

To cut a long story short, 'Fanaa' is at best worth one watch. But the movie offers nothing stellar, nothing extraordinary. Since it rides high on hype and expectations, the movie will have a good opening. But its good run in the long period is doubtful.

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12 Apr 2014
best of amir khanrn
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Fanaa Reviews 
Movie Review : Falls short of expectation (0.5/5)
Had it not been for the star value, the hype and the acting performances, 'Fanaa' would have fallen flat under the weight of poor writing and mediocre direction by Kunal Kohli. The film eventually stays just a notch above being a mere timepass flick.The movie, so grandly promoted by Yash Raj...
Most Critical User Review : fanaa (0.5/5)
best of amir khan\r\n... more
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