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AJAB PREM KI GHAZAB KAHANI - Movie Review : Ranbir excels but the film doesn't. (Review by Bobby Sing)

06 Nov, 2009 | Movie Reviews / 2009 Releases

One of of my favourite directors Raj Kumar Santoshi, known for his admirable story telling skills returns on the screen with a romantic comedy featuring Ranbir Kapoor & Katrina Kaif. There are huge expectations from the three and everyone is looking forward to witness another applaudable comedy on the lines of Santoshi’s highly appreciated “Andaz Apna Apna”. The promos are exciting and the songs are good. Hence, the stage is all set for just another blockbuster of the season from the maker of brilliant movies ranging from “Ghayal” & “Damini” to “Pukar” & “Halla Bol”.

But now after watching the latest project from one of my most admired directors, I remember a phrase which I don’t believe in really, but is often used by the artistic people in the creative field. It is called “CREATIVE BLOCK” which refers to a phase in the life of creative people where they are not able to create as per their own set standards and come up with some shockingly underworked projects which were completely unexpected from a person of their status. “Ajab Prem Ki Ghazab Kahani” exactly falls in that category. Starting with a deliberately created comedy sequence, the movie clearly gives you an idea that it is not going to be what was being expected. And as the clock moves on you realise that this time Santoshi has delivered the weakest movie of his sparkling career.

Surprisingly, the film has got nothing before intermission except the sincere, skillful performance of Ranbir and glamorous looks of Katrina. There is neither any story development in progress nor any well defined characters on the screen as normally seen in the previous works of the director. Till intermission only the love angle is visible to the viewers and one keeps on wondering that where the hell is movie heading towards. Besides this, when the real plot unfolds, it has no surprise element, since you have already guessed it without any serious efforts. Further it was also quite hard to understand that what was so "Ghazab" (great) about the storyline in the movie as mentioned in its title.

Post interval, with the introduction of few new characters, the movie even slides down further mainly due to its disastrously weak writing. In fact there are only few hilarious scenes having the exclusive Santoshi touch towards the climax of the movie. But even those are very few in quantity, compared to the movie’s enormous promotional campaign emphasizing on comedy. Moreover, the final sequence in the Don’s den is also similar to the one seen in “Andaz Apna Apna” but it greatly lacks in content.

The movie has only one performer throughout and he is Ranbir Kapoor at his best. Giving an excellent notable performance, he simply shows that he knows his job very well. Katrina on the other hand has got nothing great written for her in the script. So she remains there as a pretty face in the movie who his capable of giving much better to a project. The rest of the entire cast completely fails to make any kind of impact on the viewer, which is not a routine kind of feature in a Raj Kumar Santoshi film.

In addition to this, Santoshi also makes many strange and bizarre kind of moves in his current offering which raises enough doubts on his whole hearted involvement in the project. For instance, the confusion over the city in which the story is staged, the short cameo of Salman Khan in the first half, the un-necessary stammering act of both Ranbir & Katrina, the broken English dialogue scene of Ranbir and the surprising entry of a character resembling JESUS towards the end. Actually speaking, all these scenes don’t seem to be directed by the Santoshi we know from so many years (who can also be spotted in a scene with Ranbir). He may not have tasted success in most of his previous projects, but there has never been a BAD Santoshi film as APKGK.

Musically, it does have some good numbers, well arranged by Pritam, which are widely being appreciated by the youth. But the soundtrack is surely going to be judged by the performance of the film. Cinematography serves the purpose well but it’s really sad to see that we still have to move on to the hill stations and snow-mountains to film a romantic song featuring the lead. But actually, the main culprit here remains the writing department which takes everything back to the mediocre levels.  

In the end, I would like to add that “Ajab Prem Ki Ghazab Kahani” is a very casual kind of effort from one of best directors of Bollywood. It can only be seen for the outstanding contribution of Ranbir. But let’s take this movie as a result of an unproductive phase in the career of an immensely talented director. And let’s pray that he gives us a much better and polished product next time which can stand tall among his other masterpieces of the past.

Rating : 1.5 / 5 (Very unexpected disappointment from one of my favourite film-makers)

Tags : Ajab Prem Ki Ghazab Kahani Movie Review, Ajab Prem Ki Ghazab Kahani Film Review, Movie Review Ajab Prem Ki Ghazab Kahani, APKGK Movie Review, APKGK Film Review by bobbysing, Bobby Sing Bollywood Reviews, New Bollywood Movies Reviews, New Bollywood Movies Released, New Hindi Films Reviews, New Hindi Movies Reviews, New Hindi Movies Released, New Bollywood Reviews, Bobby Talks Cinema Review, Reviews By Bobby Sing
06 Nov 2009 / Comments ( 10 )
Pravin S. Pendkalkar

Yesterday I saw the movie along with my family, the film was just superb, Ranbir rocks all the way, in 1983 when Himmatwala was released one of the critic in a newspaper wrote the film is kachra and the said film went on to be super duper hit a golden jubilee hit and mark my words the said film APKGK shall proved by a smash hit

Bobby Sing

As I wrote in my review 'Ranbir excels but the film doesn't"

And I would really love it, if the movie goes on to become a good hit cause its a product from one of my favourite directors of Bollywood, Raj Kumar Santoshi.

May be I didnt like it but the audience will.

I am with you in this.......from heart but not from mind.



hey bobby,

h u doing,,,,

the latest news i got that the director balki\'s upcoming movie is \'PAA\' .
it promos looks fine, and i think AB looks is little bit weird, but i thinks AB will do justice to his role.

And guess what... it also taken from the famous robin william\'s movie JACK.
You might be known this or i don\'t know...

But again a copy ..........

also in other news vishal (our bollywood\'s so called Quentin ) making remake of hollywood flick "DEPARTED" ......

keep writing good stuffs..


Bobby Sing

Hi Starwar2424,
It indeed looks like "Paa" has taken its major inspiration from "Jack". However this time I also feel that  the Bollywood Version may score above the English flick in execution. Thats what I sensed when i recently watched "Jack".

Actually the story is same with similar characters but the difference is that in "Jack", there is no make up applied on Robin Williams and he simply acts as a child. Whereas in "Paa" the main trick which has created a storm is Amitabh's brilliant make up, dialogue delivery and expressions.

So I strongly feel that here we have a movie which may score well over its original.

Cheers & Keep writing...



I am really happy for my favourite director "Raj Kumar Santoshi" that his latest movie is getting good response from the audiences.

Though i dont rate APKGK anhywhere near "Santoshi Standards", but its great to see his movie tasting the much needed success after a long time.

That will again make his creativity rolling and he may come back with another "Damini", \'Ghayal" or "Pukar" for all his fans.

Cheers to Raj Kumar Santoshi!

Shandilya Dixit

Well, if u can give just 1.5 for Ajab, its really amazing to see that you have given more stars to Kurbaan.

Please consider the reason why people watch movies.
Or, should I ask, movies belong to which industry?
Did you say ENTERTAINMENT industry?
Yes, you are right.

Ajab is a movie that takes you on the laugh route right from Ranbir\'s entry till the very end- when he finally proposes Katrina on their wedding day.

It has got everything to entertain people.

On the other hand, something like Kurban is not only boring and predictable after watching New York (very well compared by you) but it also fails to give me a reason as to why such movies are made at all.


hey bobby,

Finally saw this movie yesterday.......i know it would be a comedy of santoshi\'s brand....... it\'s an average comedy flick and i liked it, i kept my logic aside and i haven\'t taken the movie seriously in the lines of his previous movies........ i know logic doesn\'t work in these kind of movies ........songs r really good and one thing i observed is that audience liked the movie.......ranbir did a good job, observed there are really good comic scenes in bits and parts......2.5 would be a good rating , i wud say

Bobby Sing

Hello Jagadish & Shandilya,

I know my ratings of APKGK were quite low as compared to the other reviews and the main reason may be the expectations I had from from my favourite and intelligent director Santoshi.

But the other reason is that I cannot laugh on "Chaplin" kind of humor, where people are dragging chairs behind you when you are going to sit, or hitting you at your back. In other words I could not appreciated the "Cake On The Face " kind of humor in the current times, which worked greatly in the 70s- & 80s.

At the same time I understand why people liked it and am glad to see its success but sadly i couldnt relate to the silly humor in the movie.

So its ok by me if the movie has become a big hit, but if "Kurbaan" also goes on to become good Hit then it really makes me think that what kind of movies we will be getting in future from such big banners, who only want to cash on the stars they have got, available for them at a phone call .

BTW I gave more stars to Kurbaan only for its execution style, which was at par with western films and thats it. Minus that it is only a rehashed version of earlier successfull "New York".

Thanks for writing in.


How do you not believe in "Creative block" as you call it?

Considering that the phrase is more commonly called "Artist\'s block", I\'m curious to know what makes you dismiss it? Are you an artist who has never experienced temporary periods of null output? Do let me know. I\'m interested.

Anyhow, an artist\'s block results in "no output". Not sub-standard output. So, it\'s very unlikely that this is the case here.

To be frank, I found the movie childish and so much unlike Santoshi, just as you did. However, considering the positive reaction from the audience, and the teenage cheers that filled the theater when I watched, it\'s Santoshi who has the last laugh. Maybe it\'s you and I who don\'t get it!

Bobby Sing

Hi Koushik,
First of all thanks for writing in...

Yes I am an artist and would readily like to share my thoughts on this.
Regarding the "Artist's Block" or "Creative Block", I feel that the phase has nothing related to the creative abilities of an artists.....But on the contrary its the unwillingness to do the task which lead to such a phase.

Various aspects such as Commercial and financial needs or absurd requests of the financiers bring on that phase in an artists life when he knows he can deliver the goods but bows down to the demands of common people. And then he either leaves all the work and moves away or makes a piece of art  much below his own set standards.

In now a days specially in the younger generation, the second case is seen more often where they intelligently do so as required of them commecially and then wait for a moment when they would be allowed to do the work close to their hearts.

I think Santoshi also bowed down to the same as he didnt taste success in many of his previous movies and desperately needed one to keep him going in the business.

And yes, audiences are liking it, I am happy for Santoshi personally but not happy as a die hard fan of his movie making style. But thats life.......

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