The first -of-its-kind from the Dharma Productions’ banner, Kapoor And Sons starring Fawad Khan, Alia Bhatt, Sidharth Malhotra supported by veteran actors like Rishi Kapoor, Ratna Pathak Shah and Rajat Kapoor is not a love story, not a love triangle and definitely not what the trailers and the happy songs looked like. It is a heartwarming story about all the little things in life that we often miss when we go on living our daily lives, in a way we assume is living albeit in a robotic fashion. This is something you probably have heard, read, seen before, but getting the chance to see all this in a mainstream Bollywood drama is a fresh start for several reasons. We have stereotyped actors for playing the happy-go-lucky, sometimes wasted characters that bring so much weight to their roles that you may find yourself wondering if you knew they possessed the caliber.
Watch the trailer and you feel this is going to be another film about a dysfunctional family, because well, all families have their share of issues and skeletons in the closet, but they sail through. But Shakun Batra, along with his writer Ayesha DeVitre tells a Hollywood-style story in a very Bollywood fashion, with its fair share of melodrama and the usual stereotypes. Remember Tennesse Williams and his play, August: Osage County?
The songs, except the soul-stirring Saathi Rey (never promoted and aptly saved for the film) and the romantic Bolna (I believe to mislead the relationship the trio shares), are party songs that you automatically find your feet tapping to. Little do they tell about what lies in store for you as you spend 2 hours and 20 minutes in the theatre watching this marvellous story unfold.
Some of us who’ve practically grown up watching films made under Yashraj Studios and Dharma Productions’ banner, will agree that there was a wee-bit of tomfoolery we expected to watch on the screen since the trend of showing homosexuality and extra-marital affairs in our movies has thus far, told a completely different story.
Speaking of acting prowess, Alia Bhatt should have brought more to the screen with her much-evolved self. As an audience, I saw a more mature actress from Highway in Kapoor And Sons. She was the bubbly girl until she bared her soul on screen. In Sidharth Malhotra’s case, there were ample good looks I expected and little acting since he has always, atleast uptil now, managed to look extremely handsome on screen but has done little to show that models-turned-actors can really weave magic on screen.
Fawad Khan, Rishi Kapoor, Ratna Pathak Shah, Rajat Kapoor are the four names who we’re much better off not commenting on, we just wish they get roles where acting is a much-needed flair and star name isn’t a pre-requisite. It’s been a little over a year since we were exposed to Fawad’s acting prowess kind courtesy his shows on Zindagi channel, followed by a fairytale romance in the runaway hit, Khoobsurat. When he said in an interview that he was completely sold on the script, I frankly found it difficult to believe, given that I wasn’t expecting a deep story that I would find myself rooting for post March 18. If you ask me if the story made me cry, I will be honest, it did not. If you ask me what it did to me, then let’s just say this piece is a tribute to my true feelings about this beautiful film and as a film-lover, I would love to watch out for films like this from the Hindi film industry. The next from the Dharma Productions’ banner is quite the awaited Ae Dil Hai Mushkil that is said to place Ranbir Kapoor back on the bandwagon as one of the most-promising actors of the industry (some of us didn’t doubt that, though).
A version of this article was originally published on one of the sites I was previously working on. You can read it here.