Laila Majnu is a love story that is as old as time and has been attempted by many storytellers. Boy meets girl, they fall in love and what follows is a world of problems that more often than not lead to their doom. I have watched many Romcoms and romantic dramas to know that most of these turn out to be cheesy or superficial (and I enjoy them most of the times). But Sajid Ali‘s adaptation, even though inspired by the age-old tale, is contemporary, and closer to reality than any of the others.
The movie begins with a flashback of the two star-crossed lovers, Kaez and Laila, played by Avinash Tiwary and Tripti Dimri, as their younger selves, unaware of the destiny they had just unravelled. As most ill-fated love stories go, this one also has a family feud at the centre of it all which sets in motion events that would change their lives forever. Sajid has done a commendable job of capturing emotions in the most unadulterated way. The screenplay done by both, Sajid and Imtiaz Ali gives the actors enough arsenal to add more to their characters and make them seem real and honest. The locations where the film was shot are stunning but the strong screenplay holds your attention to the characters and everything they’re going through. The movie also touches upon mental health, something which is consistent with some of Imtiaz’s previous films as well. One of the aspects of this story that make it feel so real is that Majnu isn’t born as Majnu, he gets there and becomes crazy in love. The story evolves through its runtime and while sometimes the pace drops a little in the first half of the film, the second half more than makes up for it.
The lead pair, Avinash & Tripti, are confident and hold their own very well in every frame. From carefree lovers to a duo fighting against the world for their love, their transition is praiseworthy. You will hardly realise that they’re making their debut with this movie. Tripti as Laila is beautiful, a true romantic at heart, calm and feisty at the same time and will leave you impressed. Avinash as Majnu, however, will stay with you long after you leave the theatre. He truly shines through in the film. Like I’ve mentioned above, his transition from the protected, calm and confident guy to a man who knows and wants nothing but the love of his life is impeccable. He portrays every shred of Majnu’s unfiltered emotions with honesty and that’s what makes his performance a notch higher. The rest of the cast does a great job but the one character you will absolutely love to hate is that of Ibban played by Sumit Kaul. The actor plays the negative role quite well making you wish we saw more of him on the big screen.
The movie isn’t just visually appealing but compels you with its music too, the background score is well composed and the songs seamlessly weave into the story. My top two choices will have to Hafiz Hafiz as it captures the true state of what Majnu is going through and also the title track. Everything detail has been paid close attention to and it adds to the love saga that keeps you hooked till the end. Whether Laila and Majnu meet their fate or change their destiny is something you’ll have to find out and it’s worth finding out.
If you’re a sucker for romance and all it entails or even if this genre is not your top choice, this is one exception you won’t regret. I highly recommend you to add this film to your weekend plans.
Cast: Tripti Dimri, Avinash Tiwari, Sumit Kaul and Sahiba Bali
Director: Sajid Ali
Okay, then I am going to go nurse my romantic heart. K. Bye.