I make onion poha for breakfast thrice a week, with the bare minimum ingredients possible. One day I tried to experiment some (inspired by the stalls outside my Engineering college) and tried some sugar (caramelized onions anyone?), extra turmeric and some red chilli powder. The result was anything but edible but I humbly gulped it down.
KANK is an honest attempt to break away from the mauled of sugary romances by the new age love guru Karan Johar. An honest attempt, huh? Its the result that speaks volumes in the age of fast-food and fast-love. What we get to witness this time is not the time tested elaborate shaadis, karwa chauths or the big fat Indian family reunions, reminiscent of his and Yash "uncle's" earlier movies. This time its the bold subject of infidelity - the sensitive (ahem!) portrayal of seeking love outside a loveless (???) marriage. How far does Karan succeed? Lets check it out through the eyes of a neutral, unassuming viewer.
KANK is the story about Dev (Shahrukh), a footballer whose career dreams are broken along with his leg when he meets with a freak accident, which makes him a recluse. His ever complaining ways puts his marriage with Rhea (Priety), a successful woman, on the rocks. In another part of New York city, there is marital tension between Rishi (Abhishek), & Maya (Rani) for reasons only known to Karan dude. Maya is a cleanliness freak and doesn't know why she is married to Rishi even after 4 years being together. She thinks that she is trapped in a loveless marriage, whereas her hubby still goes ga-ga over her. In the midst of all this mayhem, we have the swinging sexagenarian Sam (Big B) who could be the poster boy for Viagra and Dev's endearing mom played by Kirron Kher.
Its baffling to comprehend the first meeting between the protagonists Dev & Maya on the latter's wedding day and the subsequent exchange of words between total strangers. She is confused about the marriage right from the word go due to godforsaken reasons. Cut to the present times and the duo meet up under similarly make-belief circumstances. The sequences revolving around a bizarre character "Black Beast" is corny to the core (now I wish I had seen Krrish!). The first half is laced with incoherent scenes like these, barring a few. The screen lights up whenever Big B is there, he provides the much desired light-hearted moments. His tete-a-tete with Kirron Kher is quite funny.
Well, coming back to the crux of the movie, the protagonists become pally, meet up regularly and discuss ways to save their crumbling marriages. At this point, Karan dude goes over the top again and gives us the work which resembles that of an overzealous amateur. The scenes where Maya teaches Dev the art of giving a good massage in a furniture store and Karan trying it on his wife and Maya metamorphosing into a seductive hunterwaali clearly takes the movie to abysmal levels. Then the inevitable happens, the duo become too close for comfort and decide to cheat on their respective spouses - what set out as mending work created a bigger monster.
Now lets talk about the performances, which forms the most important aspect of a Karan Johar movie as he employs the best in the industry. Shahrukh plays the role of Dev with conviction and nobody else could have bettered him here, but hey wait a minute, haven't I seen the same expressions in half a dozen of his earlier movies? Rani is competent but one hardly tends to sympathize with her character inspite of crying a bucketful. Abhishek Bachchan is the surprise packet, he goes through a range of emotions as if he is already a veteran, great acting from the junior. Priety looks glamorous and in a couple of scenes manages to overshadow king Khan too, but was that cleavage show necessary? Kirron Kher too does a great job but its Big B who again proves yet again that he is the real king and this time he gives a certain Mr.Hashmi a run for his money. He is ice cool in the first half and philanthropic towards the latter stages.
All said and done, the stellar cast raises the bar of the movie but then to what extent? A movie with such a half baked plot and treatment can't be saved from the obvious, it disappoints. The screenplay leaves a lot to be desired and that poses a question in front of Karan dude - Is it really worth to break away from the mauled? An ardent fan of his movies would be satisfied watching the protagonists running around trees and mustard fields and elaborate traditional celebrations of filthy rich families.
Nowadays I make onion pohas with a dash of lemon and they taste just fine. I guess I've learnt that the right way of making it by pondering over my mistakes, without going overboard with experimentation. Good luck Mr Johar!