Verdict: Not extraordinary, not completely avoidable.
Befikre can be summed up in exactly the words this review begins with, which also is a cheeky dialogue from the movie. There is nothing you haven’t seen before in the rom-coms that Bollywood dishes out dime a dozen. Then again, there is something, something if you really must seek, charming about this latest offering from the YRF stable.
Befikre marks the return of Aditya Chopra in the director’s chair, eight years after Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi. And when you walk out of the theatre after two hours, you have that very familiar feeling that every other YRF film helped you with, whether it was Chopra who directed it or not. The man delves into the YRF library but not deep enough though, and offers you Befikre that is, being kind, old wine in new bottle (Yup, phrase bhi clichéd hai par classic hai). All in the name of giving the “youth” something they can relate to.
Having said that, it isn’t that Befikre is a flick you would not even want to give a chance. Like John Milton in The Devil’s Advocate said, “Consider the source, son”. The packaging of the movie is just how you’d like and expect it to be. It has Yash Raj written all over it including the opening credits, which tells you Dil To Pagal Hai has matured and come a few steps forward.
You don’t have to look for a story here. You know that well already if you have watched the trailer and kept up with the hype. Dharam Gulati (Ranveer Singh) is a typical Delhi bloke (yet again) and a stand-up comedian exported fresh from Dilli to Paris. Shyra Gill (Vaani Kapoor) is a happy-go-lucky girl but thankfully not the one next door, born to Punjabi parents. Shyra cannot stress enough how she is "French" and her parents are "Indian" complete with more than enough doses of her breaking into the local language. There is the meet-cute when both to their relief (of course) learn about their commitment phobia. They meet, lock lips like it is going out of fashion, move in together, break up, remain the best of friends, hook up with others, eventually to discover the obvious. Finito!
The movie does make you smile more than a few times. Like was promised, yes, you can relate to the romance or the lightheartedness of it. Befikre rests on what is now as clichéd as anything else, the very energetic Ranveer Singh. He has delivered for YRF before. He charms yet again. Vaani Kapoor tries sincerely and this could be another almost impressive feather to her hat after Shuddh Desi Romance. There are more than a few exchanges between the lead actors that endear. You still miss the team that was Bittoo and Shruti from Band Baaja Baaraat though.
Till the intermission, Befikre meanders. It could have been, should have been much crisper. The second half is far more entertaining. There is a lot more happening in the relationship of Dharam and Shyra and the movie. All till the rather bizarre climax.
The film wins big with the music. Vishal and Shekhar must be given a lot of credit for adding some soul to the movie. The songs are hummable, fun and add an appreciable flavor to the story, especially the ones picturized on Singh and Kapoor.
Befikre might not be the best commercial flick you will watch in 2016. It is easier to say this being in the last month of the year. Having said that, it could be one you can watch, smile at and say, “Yup. It was cool”.
Why You Should Watch This Movie
You should because when the credits say “Directed by Aditya Chopra”, you are assured of a certain quality, which Befikre tries to live up to. It is a recommended one-time watch like many rom-coms. It is a lighthearted, fun movie you will not regret too much.
Check out Ranveer's Befikre look decoded here: