Junooniyat, a romantic flick by Vivek Agnihotri, explores a few of the favourite theme of films i.e. love, romance, passion, relationship. Although, the plot of Junooniyat has no novelty, music, cinematography, and Pulkit-Yami pairing (their chemistry is definitely better in this film in comparison to ‘Sanam Re’) gives a fresh look and feel to the film. Junooniyat means passion, madness, insanity, obsession etc. I felt that the film could not do the justice towards its title, since the story / screenplay did not incorporate the protagonists’ junooniyat in the film. The love happened easily, interim separation also happened easily and then the ‘getting-back together’ also happened without much of a hassle. So, somehow, there was no scope for the junooniyat to be displayed. If I need to mention, Junooniyat was there in films like Veer-Zara, Silsila, Qayamat se Qayamat Tak or even the most recently released Marathi film Sairaat. I did find junooniyat missing from this film. But if I keep this point aside, the film is indeed watchable and it also keeps the audience very much engaged.
Jahan Bakshi (Pulkit Samrat), an Indian Army Captain, believes that everything in life is a choice and there is nothing called destiny. He does write Shayaris and expresses with much confidence that there is no such riddle which he cannot solve. Jahan rescues Suhani Kapoor (Yami Gautam) swimming in a restricted area in Sonmarg (this scene of Jahan rescuing Suhani reminded me of Veer-Zara, where Pretty Zinta was lifted by Shah Rukh Khan). Suhani who is originally from Amritsar has come along with her friends for a camp. Jahan brings Suhani to his army camp for interrogation in regard to her intruding the restricted area. Suhani manages to get away due to her gregariousness. She accuses Jahan of manhandling her during the rescue operations. She demands an apology letter from Jahan. There follows a series of banters between Suhani and Jahan and also songs. Their paths cross a few times, and ultimately the inevitable happens i.e. the love between Suhani and Jahan. Suhani is brought up in a very protective family environment, where she is being loved a lot by her parents, grandparents and sister-in-law. In her family, two uncles and brother are martyrs. Suhani and Jahan’s love catches the attention of her family. Her father is dead against their marriage.
What is the reason of Suhani’s father resisting her marriage to Jahan ? What happens when Suhani is restricted from meeting Jahan? What are the various sequence of events ? What happens to the love of Suhani and Jahan? Are they able to overcome family’s resistance ? What happens, when life itself becomes a riddle for Jahan? What happens, when destiny plays its game in Jahan and Suhani’s lives ? The second half sees the entry of Yash (Gulshan Devaiah), what role does he play? Mishti (Hrishitaa Bhatt plays the role of Suhani’s sister-in-law; is she in support of Suhani-Jahan’s love? How the climax of the film is set up?
The film is more of a musical melody. In the first half, there are songs every 10 minutes. Most of the songs are indeed very nice.
As far as the performances are concerned, Pulkit and Yami does inject freshness into this usual plot. Gulshan has a very brief role, but he does mark his presence. Taran Bajaj as Tullu, neighbour of Suhani, who openly claims to her about his love, does make one smile. Rest of the cast are also good.
Indeed, there are some flaws with the screenplay. Vivek could have taken some amount of risk in telling the story without following a safe story-telling path and the cliché.
Junooniyat, although with a clichéd plot and not devoid of flaws in the screenplay, has a fresh feel due to good pairing of Yami-Pulkit, the breath-taking visuals of the snow-capped Kashmir mountains, and enticing music. Watch the film.