Kriti dazzles, Shahid shines in Teri Baaton Mein Aisa Uljha Jiya

Shahid Kapoor and Kriti Sanon in Teri Baaton Mein Aisa Uljh Jiya. Photo: Trailer Video Grab 

Make no mistake: No efforts are spared to make Teri Baaton Ne Aisa Uljha Jiya an upscale, big-budget dramedy with a touch of fantasy. Projected as a Valentine’s Day romance, the film talks about Aryan Agnihotri (Shahid Kapoor), whose maternal aunt, Urmila (Dimple Kapadia) is heading a US-based company named E-Robitics, for whom he works in Mumbai.

Urmila beckons Aryan to the US for a purpose and informs him that she will be away for a couple of days and that her manager, Sifra (Kriti Sanon), will look after his needs. Aryan gets along like a house on fire with Sifra, and even before aunt returns, has fallen for her and gone to bed with her. Imagine his dismay when auntie informs him that Sifra is a robot as near a human being as can be, created as a result of 13 years of labor!

Aryan, almost heartbroken, returns to India, where his Delhi-based joint and eccentric family wants him to marry. A marriage is fixed with a girl but on introspection, Aryan cannot get over Sifra and devises a plan to get her shipped to India by his aunt so that he can keep on doing experiments with her (as she had done in the US) “in Indian conditions”. But his intention is now to marry her!

The flawless beauty that is Sifra is adored by everyone in his joint family, but when Urmila comes to know of his real plan, she is aghast and warns him of the consequences. What happens next? And how does this “impossible love story” (as tagged in the publicity) pan out?

The film intends to be a romantic family drama (for want of a better term) but the end result, though far from illogical, is a shade uncongenial, given whatever has happened. A sequel is announced after a surprise denouement, but how will they continue the story with the way it has ended? And will they, granted the very multiplex nature of the content that is not really “massy”? And with a bit of regression here and there, as in how women are expected to be from the North Indian male perspective.

The film mainly rests on three powerful assets—the lead pair’s performances and the splendiferous cinematography by Laxman Utekar (also co-producer here, and a known director returning to his core strength!). Kriti Sanon as Sifra (which is actually S.I.F.R.A., or Super Intelligent Female Robotic Automaton!) is stupendous, especially when her programming is shown going awry in the second half of the film. Right from the beginning, she delivers a masterly performance as the “woman” with a straight, fixed expression, but she excels in the pre-climax.

Shahid Kapoor returns to his cheery, positive, warm kind of characters that had gone missing in his quest for dark / brooding / gray roles. He may not look 25-plus but proves that his boyish charm and romantic intensity as a combination are intact. Dharmendra (billed here as “Dharmendra Singh Deol”!!) is, as expected, cute, though his sequence of being hospitalized seems to be clearly inspired by his role in Rocky Aur Rani Kii Prem Kahaani and he should beware against being typecast as the grandparent who needs medical care!

Dimple Kapadia (it’s amazing how this powerhouse performer makes a mark in relatively brief but important roles, as in Pathaan and Tu Jhoothi Main Makkaar) is very impressive as the feisty Urmila. The supporting cast finds Rakesh Bedi soberly funny and his reel ‘wife’ Anubha Fatehpuria good, with both playing Aryan’s parents. Rakesh Kumar is alright as the family bachelor. Ashish Verma as Aryan’s colleague is typecast (for him) but shines nevertheless. Brij Bhushan Shukla and Grusha Kapoor as Aryan’s uncle and aunt respectively are okay. As the cops, Ranjan Kavatra (especially) and Manish Kumar make an impression.

As said at the beginning, the film is upscale and that includes every technical value, especially the production design and VFX. The background music by Sachin-Jigar is nice, but the songs remain, as per the times and ‘trendy traditions’, humdrum, and are, again as is considered ‘with-it’, done by an assortment of varied names and lack thematic involvement. When the subject has not been done before (Koi…Mil Gaya, Munna Bhai MBBS, Dil Chahta Hai and co-producer Dinesh Vijan’s Go Goa Gone), great music by an involved solo entity always helps in making the experience worthwhile and adds substantially to the appeal.

The film is a decent watch, especially for the reasons mentioned above, but could have been much better in both the conceptual fleshing-out and execution, especially when they had so much talent on-board. Humor and technology could have combined to give a great comedy mix instead of merely being refreshingly different.

Maddock Films’ Teri Baaton Mein Aisa Uljha Jiya Produced by: Dinesh Vijan, Jyoti Deshpande & Laxman Utekar  Written & Directed by Amit Joshi & Aradhana Sah  Music: Sachin-Jigar, Tanishk Bagchi, Mitraz & Raghav  Starring: Shahid Kapoor, Kriti Sanon, Dharmendra, Dimple Kapadia, Anubha Fatehpura … Sharmila, Rakesh Bedi, Grusha Kapoor, Brijbhushan Shukla,  Rajesh Kumar, Ashish Verma, Maahi Raj Jain, Shaunak Duggal, Raashul Tandon, Shivaani Sopuri,  Rajan Kavatra, Manish Kumar, Abhishek Mohan Gaikwad, Sp. App.: Janhvi Kapoor & others





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