Karan Johar's 'Kalank' set in the 1940s is one of the most anticipated films of the year. With a stunning star cast and complex love story, will the ace filmmaker's period drama be able to sail smoothly? Read here
The film is a complex love story that is set during the partition era, where young Roop (Alia Bhatt) is divided between the respect for her husband, Dev Choudhary (Aditya Roy Kapur) and her forbidden love for Zafar (Varun Dhawan). The characters heartbreaking backstories mixed with the history of partition makes the film rather emotional and is sure to leave you teary-eyed in many scenes.
As the name suggests, 'Kalank' is a film where the morals of society and family ties are regarded higher than love. At the heart of the story, the film focusses on how eternal love goes beyond the trappings of society and breaks all religious barriers. Set in the 1940s, in Husnabad, which is now present-day Telanaga, the story starts with unfolding each character. Satya (Sonakshi Sinha), Roop (Alia Bhatt), and so on... Director, Abhishek Verman takes his own sweet time, and successfully builds an intrigue in the viewer's mind thus establishing a connection that keeps them on the edge of the seat, wanting to know more.
Living in a Muslim dominated society, are the Choudhary's who are the most affluent Hindus and also run a newspaper named The Daily News. However, their life takes a huge turn when they find out that their beloved Satya (Sonakshi Sinha), who plays the role of Dev Chaudhary's ( Aditya Roy Kapur's ) wife and Sanjay Dutt's (Balraj Chaudhary)'s daughter-in-law is sick. Addressed by the doctor's Satya has 1 year to live due to which she decides to look for a wife for her husband and thus ends up going to her home-town in Rajputana to convince Roop (Alia Bhatt) to do her a favour and marry Dev (Aditya Roy Kapur)
Meanwhile, part of the society are also the blacksmiths, who are mostly Muslims and live in an area named Heera Mandi. Playing the role of one, Varun Dhawan meeting Alia Bhatt, when she comes to learn singing from Bahar Begum (Madhuri Dixit), and before the audience can even realise the two start falling in love with each other. But as they say, nothing is as it seems. Without revealing too much, a dark secret tears them apart, and just when it seems like the film will offer you something more than any B-town's sagas, it disappoints.
Although the film is a complex love story, topped with the drama of the partition, it disappoints in many ways. Certain detailing, jump cuts and definitely the duration of the film make it hard to sit through. Alia Bhatt and Varun Dhawan's love story in the film is quite sparkless with the only high points being the intense scenes shot with the two. Having said this, the film's screenplay sometimes too becomes indulgent and keeps oscillating.
Now, speaking about the high points, the torn and distraught relationship between the father-son duo (Sanjay Dutt and Aditya Roy Kapur), makes it an interesting watch apart from the basic drama. However, one thing that has clearly stood out are the powerful performances of the star cast that is sure to leave the audiences impressed.
Cast: Alia Bhatt, Varun Dhawan, Sanjay Dutt, Madhuri Dixit, Kiara Advani, and Kunal Khemu
What works: Powerful performance, visually stunning and amazing music
What doesn't work: Duration, jump cuts, lack of practicality in some areas.
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