Release: April 2014.
Cast: Alia Bhatt, Arjun Kapoor, Ronit Roy, Amrita Singh, Revathi, Shiv Kumar Subramaniam.
Directed By: Abhishek Varman.
Written By: Abhishek Varman Based on 2 States by Chetan Bhagat.
Music By: Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy.
Once upon a time…..and so they lived happily ever after. Long, long ago…..all is well that ends well…and a lot more quotes that make us believe that life is always as easy as we see and hear. But as another saying goes, ‘Everyone you meet is fighting a battle you know nothing about’ none of us have any idea about the struggles that we go through to just have a few peaceful days. With the advent of new technologies entering our day to day lives, we live in a world without borders. This not only has an impact on the way we communicate with each other but the way we see ourselves and how we gradually open up to our relationships, be it with family or with the people we so madly fall in love with. While we are always thought about our traditions, we tend to fall prey to the modern comforts and 2 States, gives us the exact picture on how we are caught at the crossroads when there arises a conflict between tradition and modern culture.
Over the years we have seen movies that have a major plot dealing with a love story and how the protagonists end up convincing their parents, who until the end of the movie do not let go of their daughters and change their minds only after the train starts moving. I need not have to specify the name of the movie that changed the way “Indian Conservative” families looked at love marriage, but 20 years hence, we have another movie which has a refreshingly new take on the same conservative families who similarly oppose to ‘Love Marriage’, but oppose it in a way that suits today’s sensibilities.
Arjun Kapoor is the apt choice as Krish Malhotra, a lazy and laid-back man who is enchanted by the charm of the lovely and bubbly Ananya, who is more reminiscent of Karena Kapoor as Geet from Jab We Met. Nonetheless, the pair has the perfect chemistry to bring the heart out of the story while Alia Bhat is at ease when playing the extrovert Ananya and outshines everyone, Arjun grabs your attention with his calm and composed Krish, who ties the entire movie together. With budget never being a constraint for the movie, the supporting cast was at their disposal and they made the most out of it by roping in the best. With the likes of Revathi, Ronit Roy and Amrita Singh at their service, they form the very pillars on whom the whole movie rests upon, which they carry with ease.
The production design, although a tad exuberant, does blend in well with the premise and brings out a colorful movie as the final output. These are the very things that set high expectations for people like me who fall into the fantasy world of a bright, colorful and exuberant wedding and only get struck by reality when we find out those are out of reach for the average middle-class audience. Thank you, Sajid Nadiawala and Karan Johar for disappointing us with your fantasy. However, none of these would have mattered but for the mesmerizing melodies of Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy. Known for bringing in a variety of acoustic flavors, they have not failed us this time as well. With sky-high expectations, the tunes linger on in our minds for quite some time.
In retrospect, 2 States is a modern take on the same family drama that we are so flooded with. But what makes this stand out is the way in which the story stays true to the heart, be it in convincing parents or when convincing your loved ones. It’s never going to be easy, but neither did anyone promise it to be easy and all that matters is what you care about the most!
1. A nice take on how tuff it is to convince parents.
2. Great music.
1. A little slow and sometimes tends to meander away from what is necessary.
2. The focus is never on LOVE, even when the fulcrum of the movie stands on LOVE.