Guzaarish - movie review

Sanjay Leela Bhansali is one filmmaker whose mad passion for cinema can be seen in each and every shot he composes; but mad passion doesn’t really mean an entertaining or even a convincing film, does it? Guzaarish suffers primarily because in spite of an overtly emotional subject, that of euthanasia, which means, mercy killing; the film fails to strike any emotional chord with the audiences; except for a scene or two. The film is grossly inconsistent owing to its confused screenplay and the fact that Bhansali fails to do justice to Ethan’s character. Just look at the jump in Ethan’s motivations. He gets the prosecution lawyer locked up in a box for 60 seconds; after he lets the lawyer out, he blasts the panting lawyer with - this is how he has lived for fourteen years. On the other hand he lets off the son of the person responsible for his condition, with a lame - they don’t make men like me anymore. Guzaarish is the story of a magician, Ethan (Hrithik Roshan) who becomes a paraplegic after an accident. He becomes a radio jockey with a show called Radio Zindagi that infuses life into all dull lives. He is nursed by Sophia (Aishwarya Rai Bachchan); she is ill-treated by her abusive husband. Ethan asks his lawyer-friend Devyani (Shernaz Patel) to file a petition in court for mercy killing. When his petition is dismissed, he seeks support for his decision on his radio-show. Only the last caller, Clara (Monikangana Dutta) extends support. It is revealed they loved each other. Will the court’s verdict rewrite the Indian law? The story and the subject are excellent; but Bhansali falters in making an engaging film and the main reason for this is an insipid screenplay and convenient jumps in characterizations. Take this for example, at the start of the film there is a scene where Omar (Aditya Roy Kapoor) calls up an unknown person (which must be his father Yaseer, as revealed later in the movie). He mocks Ethan and calls Sophia a bitch. Naturally then the father-son duo is evil; shouldn’t there be a poetic justice or sweet revenge? It is these kinds of glaring lapses in writing which makes Guzaarish a superficial film rather than touch the audiences’ heart. 

What rocks the movie: Cinematography A few individual scenes that are vintage ‘Bhansali’ and compel you to exclaim wow! Performances, though only in a couple of scenes 

What chucks the movie: Writing - Ethan kissing Clara while performing magic in front of a packed auditorium is heights of cinematic liberty. Pace Very slow. Music  

VERDICT: Venture to Guzaarish only if you are looking at a soulless film.