1.40 PM – Aishwarya Rai welcomes me with her gorgeous smile
2.30 PM – A call on my cell, Ã¢â‚¬Å“Hello..Ã¢â‚¬Â?
Me: I am watching the movie, please call laterÃ¢â‚¬Â?
3.30 PM – HelloÃ¢â‚¬Â¦?
Me: I am still in the movie, waiting for the interval, please call back later
4.30 PM: HelloÃ¢â‚¬Â¦?
Me: I am still in the movie, please call back later
I get reply back this timeÃ¢â‚¬Â¦ Ã¢â‚¬Å“How many movies are you planning to watch together?Ã¢â‚¬Â?
Me: Dude, it is still Umrao Jaan, the same movie, same Aishwarya and same JP DuttaÃ¢â‚¬Â¦
You must have imagined state of mind of normal person watching this movie.
Let me directly move on to the story (and then movie bashing)
The movie is about Umrao Jaan (Aishwarya Rai), how she is dragged into the brothel, how she falls in love and looses her love. The movie starts with Umrao Jaan narrating her storyÃ¢â‚¬Â¦ Amiran who was kidnapped by 2 goons and was sold at brothel (Kotha) of Khanum Sahib (Shabana Azmi) in Lucknow. There she gets the name of Umrao Jaan and she soon becomes gen of Lucknow. In her first dance performance (Mujra) she falls in love with Nawab Sultan (Abhishek Bachchan) and Sultan also falls madly behind her beauty. But the life isnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t so easy, SultanÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s father does not like this relationship but Sultan decides to leave his house for Umrao but some circumstances makes him return back to his place. Umrao meets Sultan with the help of a dacoit, Faisal (Sunil Shetty), who is madly in love with her. But because of misunderstandings Umrao looses her love and returns back to Lucknow.
Wait, it is still not overÃ¢â‚¬Â¦ because of independence fights, Umrao is forced to leave the Lucknow and she goes back to Faizabad where she finds her mother and brother. But they do not accept Umrao / Amiran. Umrao is left alone in her world of Mujras and Kothas.
The story is remake of the 1981 Rekha starrer Umrao Jaan. (Though they prefer to say it is based on the novel Umrao Jaan Ada.) JP Datta fails miserably in narrating the story, infact director should know that the era of Ã¢â‚¬Å“3 and half hourÃ¢â‚¬Â? movies is gone. These days it is difficult to make people sit for 2 and half hours too. I think it is not a good idea to skip the editor to save some money. Anu Malik fails again to make people sit in the songs. Music fails to impress apart from the song Salaam. The songs are stuffed in the movie as if guys over at McDonalds stuff cheese in the burger. The only 2 things which are good in the movie are: Cinematography, the scenes in Lucknow and other places are shot very well. And Aishwarya Rai, she looks too gorgeous. I just loved her.
Okay, now let me not make this review as lengthy as the movie. LetÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s sum the things up now.
Story: Based on the old movie Umrao Jaan. Very good story but director fails to narrate it well and ends up making a Geet Bahar (Songs countdown) than a movie.
Music: Another disaster from Anu Malik , music was bad leaving couple of songs apart.
Acting: Aishwarya Rai is 100% going to stop your heartbeat and make you stare at her all the time. She is good at acting too this time. Abhishek Bachchan is good too. Sunil Shetty does his job well. Shabana Azmi is very good and fits very well in the role. Rest of the star cast does their job well.
I would give this movie 1.5 stars out of 5. I do not see any chances of this movie doing well. But it is a must watch for Aishwarya Rai fans.