As the credits start to roll in with various romantic quotes in the background; you may be forgiven in thinking that Ajay Devgan’s directorial debut might be one of those romantic movies where the hero gets the heroine against all odds and settles down to a lived happily ever after scenario. But the movie turns out to be quite a serious movie which attempts to tackle a sensitive subject of a patient suffering from the Alzheimer’s disease.
The movie initially disappoints you due to an insipid first half. We are introduced to a psychiatrist Ajay (Ajay Devgan) who goes on a cruise trip with his friends. Things get quite bad when we are introduced to his friends whose sole purpose in the movie seems to be: scream-shout-drink-scream-shout-drink making the audience want to scream-shout-for-head-ache-curing pill. There are a lot of corny jokes thrown about and even worse dialogues are spouted. Sample this: Leaving a cruise midway is like looking for an abortion in the seventh month. Someone should take Ashwin Dhir to task for many such offensively stupid dialogues.
In midst of all this mess Ajay meets Piya (Kajol) and is entralled by her. He falls in love with her at first sight (predictably); meets resistance from her immediately (again predictably); uses a few lies and couple of songs to make her reciprocate his love (yawn..predictably). But even though the broad outline of the courting seems to be run-of-the-mill stuff, it’s elevated to a different level due to some neat touches by Ajay Devgan. The explanation of Piya’s background through her book; the conversations between Ajay and Piya run in the background while we see the two enjoying each others company; the sequence of Ajay attempting at learning Salsa overnight – all these result in making the courtship a bit more enjoyable. Everything seems to be going Ajay’s way and he seems to be leading an enviable life, when suddenly he discover that Piya is suffering from Alzhimer’s disease. From here, the movie takes a serious note as Ajay tries to grapple with Piya’s disorder and tries to bring some sense of order in his life.
The sequences showing Kajol’s gradual tendency to lose her memory is catalogued quite subtly. There’s an instance when Ajay tells Piya to come to meet her at a certain time and Piya turns up an hour late insisting that he got the timing wrong; Piya has a tendency from childhood days to keep post-its in her mirror so that she may not forget much. These scenes seem to be inconsequential at first but as we understand her condition, we also realise the importance of those scenes.
The movie focuses quite a lot on Ajay Devgan‘s character and he delivers a commendable performance. His character goes through a lot of distress emotionally and he emotes quite well in those. Kajol delivers an excellent performance. She is pretty restrained in her performance when Alzhimer’s takes over her. Any actor of a lesser calibre could have gone over the top. Thanks to Kajol it does not become U Me aur Ham! Both the lead actors lift the movie up a few notches. The viewer feels very convinced of Ajay’s dilema and is sympathetic towards the choices that he’s forced to make. Ajay’s friends Vicky (Karan Khanna),Natasha (Isha Sharwani), Nikhil (Sumeet Raghavan) and Reena (Divya Dutta) spoil the mood with their histrionics. The except for the title track rendered by Vishal Bharadwaj, the songs are strictly ok. In fact a couple of songs (specially the wedding song), could have been chopped off.
Ajay Devgan the director handles the emotional scenes like a veteran. It’s the light-hearted scenes that are a big let-down. Off course that could be due to the low quality of writing. But he doesn’t seem to maintain a certain level of consistency. For instance, there’s a wonderful digital imagery where we are introduced to Kajol’s thoughts and aspirations; the very next sequence though there is a loud scene with Pichwade Pe Kutte Kate playing in the background. This puts off the viewer’s mood immediately. The romantic track between Ajay and Piya is marred by such inconsistencies. Ajay Devgan does have in him to be a good director, he just has to ensure that consistency is maintained. As Piya’s condition worsens in the later stages, there are a few shocking scenes which are handled very well by him. The story written by Ajay Devgan is good, but I thought the story was a bit incomplete. There could have been more meat in the story towards the end.
Overall, the second half saves the day for the movie. The emotional portions overwhelms you and you’re willing to overlook the blemishes in the first half. If you are looking for a light hearted romantic comedy, then this movie isn’t for you. It’s a movie that tackles the subject of relationships at a serious level.
The buzz around this movie:
|Meeta, Without Giving The Movie Away.
“..Despite all its flaws, U Me Aur Hum touches a tender spot, makes a tear roll, and sets you thinking about what love really means to you...” Read More
|Rajeev Masand, IBN Live
“..Ajay Devgan oozes sincerity as the conflicted husband, but it’s Kajol who is really the emotional anchor of the film, dazzling you with her spontaneity, pumping life and blood into her character..” Read More
|Cafe Bharat, Bharat Student
“..A gripping emotional treat filled with quality, worth taking your near and dear.t.” Read More
|Sanjay Ram, Business of Cinema
“..U Me aur Hum deserves a watch for Kajol’s perfomance, Devgan’s directorial skills and a passionately long story. Make sure you carry in your bag time, tissues and patience; then all’s good...” Read More
|Khalid Mohamed, Hindustan Times
“..For its tear-drawing emotional content, a splendid performance by Kajol and Devgan’s fluid makeover from an actor of steel to a director of tenderness, you ultimately take U Me aur Hum home with you. Worth a cherish..” Read More
|Baradwaj Rangan, A Blogical Conclusion
“..But these miscalculations are minor and easy to brush aside, considering what Devgan has accomplished, which is to take a one-dimensionally sappy story and give it shading and texture within a commercial context..” Read More