Manmarziyaan is a love story like none other. It takes you on a ride and much like life it is not an easy one to be on (in a good way). The movie is essentially a war between the new age tinder wala love vs old school pyaar wala love. The argument is not as easy as it seems and the characters and the actors who’ve brilliantly played them make you mull over the options as well.
Rumi and Vicky (played by Taapsee Pannu and Vicky Kaushal) are in a relationship and thanks to Vicky’s acrobatic roof jumping abilities, to reach Rumi’s house every morning, the entire street is aware of their relationship. From what is seen, they’re in what we call the ‘honeymoon phase’ of their relationship even though it’s unclear as to how long they’ve been dating because they can’t get enough of each other. But it all changes when these two get caught in her bedroom. And as it happens in little towns, the girl is, of course, asked to get married, funnily enough not to the man she was sleeping with but to anyone but him. It’s only in the events that follow you realize that how different Rumi and Vicky are from each other. Vicky Sandhu aka DJ Sandz is the mould for every wannabe modern Punjabi boy complete with their love for Badshah and dream of becoming a famous DJ. Everything a teenage girl would look for in a boyfriend. But along with being carefree and too cool for school, he is afraid to take up responsibility.
Rumi, on the other hand, is tomboyish, loud, impulsive, headstrong and lives life on her own terms. But just like most girls her age, she too wants to get married. What could have been an easy love story if they were a little mature, turns into multiple fights, drama, sex and Robbie’s (played by Abhishek Bachchan) entry. While you empathize with Rumi for all the anger and frustration that she feels, you can’t help but sympathize with Vicky as well, who is put on the spot all of a sudden. Even in his erratic and carefree demeanor, he asks important questions like, when they had really discussed marriage before. While many might find it to be the obvious next step in a relationship, it left me wondering as to when is it ever ideal to bring up marriage in a relationship that is going extremely well? This question is what drives the movie and makes space for a third person in their relationship in the form of Robbie. He is everything that Vicky is not. A well-settled NRI, soft-spoken, practical- the perfect husband material. Robbie is what brings balance to the story and these two crazy characters.
Vicky Kaushal is outstanding as Vicky Sandhu aka DJ Sandz, not just in how he looks, but he lives the character with ease. He steals the show in the first half and definitely overshadows the soft-spoken London return husband character. But in the second half, in a drastically different way, Abhishek Bachchan steals the show. He proves that loud and dramatic action is not the only way to reach out to your audience and that is precisely the approach his character has as well. I feel like the trailer didn’t do justice to Robbie’s character and I’m guessing with good reason. While Robbie may have looked very similar to the third wheel or like Prem Kumar from Mai Prem Ki Deewani Hoon, that is far from the truth. He is aware, in fact, hyper-aware but at the same time practical and modern in his thinking. He reminds you that there’s no judgment when it comes to love. The only thing that did seem little off is that Abhishek’s foreign return character didn’t seem Punjabi enough for a film that is very overtly Punjabi. His Punjabi mixed Hindi, seemed a bit too polished even for an NRI.
Coming to the main attraction of the movie, Rumi, everything that irritates you about her character is exactly what makes her so relatable and Taapsee Pannu has played her to perfection. Through the course of the movie you see her grow up, not physically but mentally. Her character is fleshed out to the fullest and somewhere or the other, every girl will be able to relate to her journey. The credit for this, I think goes to the writer Kanika Dhillon.
But at the end of the day, all three characters show us that love is selfish. Vicky, for wanting Rumi, but not wanting to commit. Rumi, for wanting both Vicky’s fyaar and Robbie’s well-settled and peaceful pyaar and Robbie, for his decision to marry Rumi in the first place.
The characters are what makes the entire movie and it is nothing like Anurag Kashyap has ever done before. After films like Gangs Of Wasseypur, nobody would expect Anurag to make a film that is as sweet as this one. Even when he leaves behind the darkness that his films are usually known for, he does not compromise on the intensity. It is clear from the movie that he has steered this ship of what could have been any other love triangle, in the right direction. Kudos to that!
The background score and music by Amit Trivedi just adds to the story beautifully. On the downside, the movie is quite long and could have been tighter in places, but it gives you space to ponder about a lot of questions that it poses. Each and every actor in the film has outdone themselves and just for that, you can buy those tickets.
All in all, Manmarziyaan is a sweet movie that is definitely worth your time.
Cast: Abhishek Bachchan, Taapsee Pannu, and Vicky Kaushal
Director: Anurag Kashyap