There are moments of brilliance in Zoya Akhtar’s DilDhadakne Do, but they are far-stretched and too insipid to leave a mark. As the film came to a long and halted close, I stretched my legs and felt something a miss. Even though nothing substantial happens, Akhtar makes you hold your pee pre-interval just because you have faith in her and the people on-board. But as the movie proceeds you just crave for something good to come your way. The emotions don’t hit the right spot, the screenplay drags leaving you helpless with every passing second, and quite like The Mehra’s you want to shout at the film to get a kick-start but you don’t just because you are too nice.
Much like Zoya Akhtar’s previous film Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara, Dil Dhadakne Do basically deals with people suffering from First World problems. The film travels across the world as their perspectives about life, people and everything that’s wrong with them, changes.
I never complained about the theme of the film, because I knew that Zoya Akhtar could pull it off. But alas! she had me in splits here. First of all, even though ZNMD was about people from the First World, it was quite relate-able as it had quirky characters and touchy and realistic moments. DilDhadakne Do has all the potential to do what it was supposed to do, but the tiresome screenplay and the snail-pace doesn’t work in its way.
The film is about The Mehra’s and their 10 day cruise where they are to celebrate their anniversary. The odds are not in their favor. The filthy rich couple is on the verge of being bankrupt and their only way out is getting their son who is a good-for-nothing-nobody to marry one of their associates’s daughter. On the other hand, their own daughter, who is a self-made women is not happy with her marriage and wants a divorce. The film is about a lot of things but mostly its about acceptance. The greatest problem that a family faces is accepting their loved ones for who they really are. The Mehra’s are decisive but naive, inert but greedy, rich but stupid. Their greatest strength lies in them bonding together, but pretty much like every other family the words that are needed to make things right never leave their mouths.
Dil Dhadkne Do is not half as bad as millions of other commercial films but only if it had relied on real emotions and feelings to convey its central theme. Like Javed Saab’s poetry in ZNMD which was a midas touch to the already good film, we have a strange voice-over where the family dog walks you through the film. The sad part is, rather than relying on the subtlety of the moments, we are forced to listen to the voice-over describing every single thing to you. I’m not saying that the Animal vs Human analogy used is bad but after a certain period of time it just doesn’t feel right. Imagine a man fishing in the sea while someone describes every single emotion on the man’s face. How strange would that be?
If you are really going to watch Dil Dhadkne Do, watch it for the amazing locales and breathtaking cinematography. Its strange how even in a mediocre film everything looks so beautiful. Also, the performances are great. Specially by Shefali Shah and Anil Kapoor. There’s a scene where Shefali stuffs her mouth with chocolate cake. It’s moments like these which could have made the film an amazing drama, but sadly didn’t.
Final Verdict: I really liked the third act of the film, but to get there you need a truck-load of popcorn and a lot of patience. There’s a good film in here but it got lost somewhere in the sea.