Neetu Kapoor shines in Raj Mehta’s family drama

Indian audiences can never come out of a wholesome family drama. Watch films such as Kapoor & Sons or Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham (K3G) and you know that despite their share of issues, we revisit these films only because these films are entertaining and are family dramas that instantly connect with audiences. For a long time, despite the growth of OTT and several new topics covered in movies, we’ve lacked a quintessential family drama with a generous dose of comedy. Needless to say, Jugjugg Jeeyo promised to be all of that, and high hopes were pinned instantly.

Now, having walked out of the theater after watching it, it’s safe to say that the film lives up to the hype it created. The story revolves around Kukkoo (Varun Dhawan) and Naina (Kiara Advani), childhood sweethearts whose marriage goes sour and decides to divorce. As they struggle to inform Kukkoo’s family of their decision, Kukkoo receives another shock when his father (Anil Kapoor) reveals he wants a divorce from his mother (played by Neetu Kapoor).

Amidst all the chaos, which was presented to us in a comedic way, one might start to think this is outright comedy. But as had been the case with director Raj Mehta, the second half sets the stage for emotion and drama, and all issues are ironed out instead of turning a blind eye to “mistakes”.

Although the film focuses on solving problems, it is Raj’s unpredictable storytelling that draws you into the second half of the film. It keeps you guessing – is it looking for a realistic ending? Will he give us a happy ending? The problem with family dramas is that everyone wants a good ending or else some of the audience might be unhappy. Raj approaches expectation and reality with a great deal of sugar coating.

However, the star of the film is undoubtedly Neetu Kapoor. She’s a powerful performer, and while she stays away from the camera, the talent is bound to come out when it starts rolling. The emotional sequences are put on her shoulder and she anchors them beautifully. From delivering dialogue to demonstrating the dilemma her character Geeta is going through, she is brilliant in every sequence. In fact, his performance can move the toughest souls.

The entire cast, in its entirety, is good too. Varun Dhawan plays the man caught between his own failing relationship and the person who takes on the responsibility of saving his parents’ marriage. He needs to convey emotional upheaval while maintaining comedic first-half timing, and he does it skillfully. It is also made possible by the impeccable performance of Anil Kapoor. He’s effortless in his portrayal of Bheem, the man whose character provides the main element of surprise in the film. He makes acting seem like a walk in the park.

Kiara Advani once again maintains her good performance, slipping easily into Naina’s skin. Her character is very meticulous, and she succeeds perfectly with her talent. There’s Maniesh Paul, who plays his brother, and he brings plenty of comic relief to even the most difficult sequences. He is the sugar coat that Raj Mehta gives the audience to make the difficult and more emotional sequences more palatable.

The background score quite often dictates the mood of the audience. Even in certain sequences where one would want to get angry, the music is cleverly kept on an amusing melody, which makes the audience take it lightly. The emotions reach a climax, and one would realize that the music was deliberately kept that way to overwhelm the audience at that moment.

The film has problems. Some jokes sound like old WhatsApp attackers, although they would induce laughter. But we would like to ignore it because Jugjugg Jeeyo offers wholesome entertainment.

Jugjugg Jeeyo will have you laughing, crying and joining the characters on the emotional roller coaster. The movie is very entertaining, and paisa wasool, and you should definitely give it a watch.

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