Bollywood and culture in an emerging India
Ekk Deewana Tha: Never-ending nonsense
Sometimes even the worst films can redeem themselves with a moment of lucidity. Just as you are struggling to make sense of Gautham Menon’s “Ekk Deewana Tha“, the heroine — in a fit of emotion — tells the hero “there is nothing here, no chemistry or anything at all. Nothing”. And just like that, she hits the nail on the head.
This almost three-hour romance is the cinematic equivalent of listening to someone scratching their nails on a blackboard. You want to pull your hair out and tell them to stop it already. Unfortunately, Menon seems to be in no mood to listen. Just when you think it’s all over, it goes on for a little bit more.
A remake of Menon’s 2010 Tamil hit “Vinnaithaandi Varuvaayaa“, the film tells the story of Sachin (Prateik) an aspiring film-maker who falls for his upstairs neighbour Jessie (Amy Jackson) at first sight. But Jessie is loath to return his affections, telling Sachin her conservative Christian family in Kerala wouldn’t take kindly to her falling in love with a Hindu boy.
Menon attempts to build a fresh, teenybopper romance, with the 80s theme of external circumstances like religion and age standing in the way of star-crossed lovers. While the idea itself isn’t new, the film could have worked with the right casting and script. But as you might have guessed by now, it has neither.
Scenes are disjointed, the film is edited haphazardly and the dialogue unintentionally funny. As for the film’s soundtrack, a couple of songs such as ‘Hosanna’ are easy on the ears but fans would expect much more from the Oscar-winning A.R. Rahman.
Adding to the mediocrity are the film’s leads — Amy Jackson looks like a rabbit caught in the headlights; scared out of her wits and doesn’t know where to look. Even in the most emotional of scenes, you don’t feel for her character. For that matter, you don’t feel for Prateik’s character either. He needs acting classes and needs them badly — Smita Patil‘s genes don’t seem to be kicking in. Someone needs to tell him that spreading arms wide and jumping in the air doesn’t constitute acting.
Unless you are a huge Prateik or Amy fan or want to test your patience, I suggest you give “Ekk Deewana Tha” a wide berth.