Review: ‘Jab We Met’

Alternately charming and frustrating, romantic-comedy "Jab We Met" begins as a fresh, odd-couple road movie but starts running on empty after intermission.

Alternately charming and frustrating, romantic-comedy “Jab We Met” begins as a fresh, odd-couple road movie but starts running on empty after intermission. Pairing of onetime real-life couple Shahid Kapur and Kareena Kapoor generates some natural screen chemistry, but the script’s lack of infrastructure (subplots, twists, character nuances) takes its toll. Pic started well Oct. 26 in Blighty and north Indian plexes but, compared with a recent classic of the genre like “Bunty aur Babli,” won’t travel long distance.

Depressed by his loved one’s marriage, young Mumbai industrialist Aditya Kashyap (Kapur) goes AWOL. On a northbound train, he gets stuck with Geet (Kapoor), a motormouth Sikh, and through a series of mishaps ends up traveling with her. She’s spontaneous and ruled by her heart; he’s all planning and logic. When they arrive in Bhatinda, Punjab, her family mistakenly thinks they’re a couple; but Geet actually plans to elope with her secret b.f., Ashuman (Tarun Arora). In the noisier role, Kapoor steals most of the screen honors, with Kapur increasingly reliant on his boyish grin. Musical numbers are foot-tapping, though the throwaway ending is weak. Hinglish title means “When We Met.”

Jab We Met

India

Production

A Studio 18 (in U.K.) release of a Shree Ashtavinayak Cinevision production. Produced by Dhilin Mehta. Directed, written by Imtiaz Ali.

Crew

Camera (color, Panavision widescreen), N. Nataraja Subramaniam; editor, Aarti Bajaj; music, Pritam Chakraborty; lyrics, Irshad Kamil; art director, Teddy Maurya; costume designers, Manish Malhotra, Shabina Khan. Reviewed at Cineworld Shaftesbury Avenue 7, London, Nov. 1, 2007. Hindi, Punjabi dialogue. Running time: 139 MIN. (I: 75 MIN.; II: 64 MIN.)

With

Shahid Kapur, Kareena Kapoor, Tarun Arora, Dara Singh, Pawan Malhotra, Kiran Juneja, Saumya Tandon.
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