Bollywood and culture in an emerging India
Ek Main Aur Ekk Tu: A rom-com that “gets” it
Through the first half, Shakun Batra’s romantic comedy “Ek Main Aur Ekk Tu” follows an entirely predictable path — boy and girl meet, get drunk, get married and realise they don’t want to stay married. Circumstances dictate they must spend time together while waiting for their marriage to get annulled. At the interval, one of them even has the “I’m in love” epiphany.
Of course, you don’t mind the predictable storyline because there is zippy dialogue, some great writing and the performances are in tune with all of the above. So far, so good. But we all know the second half is where it gets tricky, and not too many film-makers know how to end well. Well, clear all doubts now. Batra is not one of them.
The second half of the film is even better than the first, because it adds an element of unpredictability to the mix of great dialogue, writing and acting — and what you have is a Bollywood rom-com that is funny, romantic and mature enough for today’s audiences.
Imran Khan plays Rahul, a poor little rich boy in Las Vegas, cowering from his overbearing parents and too “uptight” for his age, as a family friend tells him. He bumps into Riana Braganza, a scatter-brained, effervescent hair stylist, and on a drunken night out, the two get married. Of course, they wake up the next day with a massive hangover and the realisation they have made a huge mistake.
They apply for an annulment and since Riana is broke and doesn’t have a place to stay, she camps at Rahul’s house. They hit it off, and he realises he’s in love.
From this point on, Batra takes the path less travelled — there’s some good writing (by Ayesha Devitre and Batra himself) and the performances really pick up. Kareena Kapoor is the star of the film — you cannot take your eyes off her. Imran Khan is the perfect foil to her energy, and together the two of them add that much needed ingredient to a romantic film — chemistry.
If you are a sucker for romance, don’t miss this one. Even if you aren’t, I’d give this one a chance, “Ek Main Aur Ekk Tu” will be worth your while.