If I really had to watch the three cities in one day or in less than three hours, I would hop on to the couch with a bottle of soda and watch Travel and Living rather than watching London Paris New York. The entire Bollywood audience has seen the Eifel Tower on screen perhaps on more occasions than a European or French who doesn’t live in Paris. New York has more to offer than its glitzy lanes and by lanes dear director and London has more than the Giant Wheel. The trouble with movies such as London Paris New York is that they surmount their imagination and expectations on the most clichéd places, the most clichéd plot lines and the most clichéd twists.
A romantic comedy needs to have a lot of twists (not like those in a thriller) but at least to an extent. However, would anyone care to offer some justified and realistic reasons for those twists? Seriously, we love consequences but we also care for the causes. Then we have the one dimensional characters steering the story ahead. Now, you may have characters reacting differently in various circumstances but are humans only the product of circumstances? Director and writer Anu Menon misses out on these essential elements that make a film.
London Paris New York had the slightest possibilities of a resurgence had the leading pair put up a unique show. Sadly, Ali Zafar who tries to do too many things and shoulder a lot of responsibilities on and off screen (he is the lead actor, lead singer, lyricist and music director of the film) fails to do anything worthwhile. Aditi Rao is strictly passable and you would not fall in love with her. I fail to understand how a supposedly conservative girl quickly sheds her image and goes all out with a complete stranger on the very first day. Character transformations cannot be that simple and instantaneous.
Ali Zafar tries too hard to impress and perhaps punches in inspiration from all other Bollywood actors of today and yesterday (not talking about day before yesterday’s actors). Aditi does not age through the film despite the 8 years running time of the on screen story and wondrously the characters do not develop. Aren’t they supposed to go through so much in a span of 8 years and that too visiting half of the world in the interim?
Anu Menon says no and you have to watch what she has to show. Of course you have the luxury to walk out of the multiplex but you do not wish to waste the money. Well then, waste your time. If you are to shoot in Paris, how about some unique shots of the by lanes of Champs Elysees or may be the Notre Dame Cathedral and not just the Tower and a cheap hotel.
London Paris New York does not tell you why the lead pair falls in love in the first place, why they decide not to catch up, why they fall in love again, why they part ways again for trifle issues and why they finally manage to make up when the whole world was at their disposal for eight years. Perhaps they could not find anyone, says the writer. The movie also betrays the idea that you get to see the three capital cities but sadly you do not get to see any more than what you have seen already on silver screens.
London Paris New York is not a comedy and certainly not a romantic movie and it does not have the remotest resonance with reality and Ali Zafar and Aditi Rao Hydari are exactly the same as they were in their last movies. Anu Menon may have tried to evoke different emotions at different stages of the lead pair’s life but regrettably none of that reaches the audience. Well, it may still be a weekend outing for young couples but nothing more.