Jagga Jasoos – Movie Review

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Jagga Jasoos – Movie Review
Jagga Jasoos – Movie Review

“JAGGA JASOOS” is endearing, imaginative, but grossly underwhelming!

Supplied with generous doses of sensory tricks, this film is merely an accumulation of well-thought-out parts, which don’t really form a satisfying whole, eventually depriving you of the potential fun you could’ve had with a team and subject like this. An out-and-out musical, this ambitious but flawed film is rendered watchable by Ranbir Kapoor’s flawless act, despite the film’s overlong time duration and lack of a coherent script. Watch it, but keep your expectations limited!

The story is of Jagga (Ranbir Kapoor) – a curious, stammering, shy young boy in a quaint little town, who lives a happy life with his accident-prone father, Bagchi (Saswata Chatterjee). After admitting Jagga into Boarding School, his father suddenly disappears from the scene. Feeling abandoned, Jagga's only contact with his father is a VHS tape that he receives in the mail every year on his birthday. Armed with sharp detective skills, Jagga sets out to solve the mystery of his missing parent. Along the way he finds a partner in Shruti (Katrina Kaif) an accident-prone journalist with her own international criminal case to solve. Using a few tricks he learnt from Bagchi, Jagga and Shruti embark on a mission to uncover details of his father's mysterious life and find themselves embroiled in a worldwide smuggling racket.

If this director-actor duo’s last outing “Barfi” made you feel cuddled with its charming antics and moving drama, you’d obviously expect this film to deliver a big warm hug. While Anurag Basu’s imaginary canvas is impressive and visually striking to say the least, it lacks the cohesiveness and soul that can move you emotionally. It’s an experiment that needed more meat to be successful. You have umpteen moments that shine and leave a smile on your face, but they never result in a wholesome, satiating sum. That’s because Basu never really pays heed on the script’s coherence. His overindulgence in creating an effervescence of funny capers seems to be the ruling emotion. As a result, the core of the film – the Father-Son bond – seems to get lost somewhere in the middle.

You must nevertheless give it to Basu for sticking with his intent of making a different kind of cinema, that crushes all conventions. Firstly, it’s a musically narrated film, the base of which lies in the fact that the stammering lead character can smoothly converse only if he sings. Then you have the narration in the form of chapters/books, recited by Katrina in a classroom full of kids, which again is novel. The concepts like Buddha’s circle, Bad-lucky people, and many more, give this film its essential character. I wish Basu’s creativity also resulted in a more soulful venture, that could keep you gripped.

Applause is in order for the daringly brave Ranbir Kapoor, to have acted/ produced in an experimental film like this – experimental only for India ofcourse! It’s a film that requires immense capabilities of you as an actor, akin to a Broadway musical, and Ranbir Kapoor proves he is the gold standard for all Indian actors. Unbelievably real and impossibly delightful, Kapoor breathes in freshness and life in this film. If it wasn’t for Ranbir, this film would’ve been an epic disaster. My hearty wish is for this film to do well at the box-office, thereby giving more power to the phenomenon that is Ranbir Kapoor. Katrina Kaif is way better than her previous self, but still qualifies as just passable. Saswata Chatterjee is also quite charming and he (along with the young Jagga) creates some memorable moments. Saurabh Shukla is as usual excellent, in a menacing manner this time. All others play their parts well.

To sum up, JAGGA JASOOS is a great step forward for Indian Cinema, but is somehow misdirected. A little more effort in the writing department could’ve done wonders. Nevertheless, it’s watchable, especially for its superstar Ranbir Kapoor’s immaculate performance. As advised earlier, go for it, but limit your expectations!

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