If you believe in the philosophy that theorises that it's not love that is complicated, it's people, and you have no problem appreciating the complexities involved in a relationship then Anurag Kashyap's Manmarziyaan is definitely your cup of tea.
The premise of the plot is simple but a bit cliched considering director Kashyap has a reputation for going off the beaten track. Manmarziyaan has echoes of Sanjay Leela Bhansali's Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam and is similar to Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi directed by Aditya Chopra.
But people are complicated. That's where Taapsee Pannu, Abhishek Bachchan and Vicky Kaushal step in to successfully depict the complexities. As Kashyap said at the Toronto Film Festival on Wednesday, he enjoyed doing the film because he "was allowed to do what he wanted." (That incidentally is what the title of the movie means.)
The end result is a nicely told tale of a roller-coaster love story between Rumi (Pannu) and Vicky (Kaushal) which becomes a triangle with the entry of Robbie (Bachchan), a banker in London who comes home to Amritsar in search of a bride.
Rumi gets fed up of waiting and being ditched by Vicky who has a commitment phobia and is also a failed DJ. The fiery and feisty Rumi marries Robbie and the ensuing relationship mess is where Kashyap stamps his authority.
The son of Amitabh Bachchan returns from a two-year hiatus in his career with a bang. And it has proved an exceptional run of good performances from both Pannu and Kaushal.
Pannu impressed as the love factor in hockey player Sandeep Singh's biopic Soorma, before delivering a hit performance in Mulk. She also plays a small-time hockey player and runs a sports goods shop in this movie. Her bold swagger is a perfect fit for her personality and she carries it off well and is the leading light of the movie.
Kaushal's role is the most limited among the three but the first-half is certainly belongs to him. After Raazi, the web series Lust Stories and Sanju, Kaushal is once again the man with the Midas touch in Manmarziyaan.
Shellee's lyrics are well-written songs but do not transcend beyond the level of decent and are not done enough justice by Amit Trivedi's music. Daryaa, Halla and Dhyan Chand are songs that complement the story but leave very little to be complimented.
Kashyap, however, does not miss a beat, especially where quirky shots are concerned. In particular, the presence of two set of twins in the background. In one shot of note, a pair of teen girls are shown dancing on a roof top which looks like it is in the middle of the road.
It contrasts nicely with the usual scenes of congested housing in the small lanes of Amritsar all of which Kashyap has depicted in the tiniest perfect detail.
Manmarziyaan is not to be missed.