The millennial approach towards a committed relationship was nicely presented by Mani Ratnam in Ok Kanmani in 2015. Mani Ratnam’s long time assistant Shaad Ali has remade this film under the title Ok Jaanu and to be honest it hasn’t lost its key points. The quintessential on screen chemistry of the lead pair may not be as alluring as the one we saw in the Tamil version, but they are adorable and vibrant enough to keep us engaged in the film and Ok Jaanu for that reason is a nicely made film.
Aditya is this game developer who has this ambition to go to USA for a better career. Tara is an architect who also wishes to go to Paris for further studies. These two who doesn’t have much of a belief in committed relationship like marriage decides to live together in a home where Adi was already staying as a guest. The movie shows us the path of this relationship and also how the lead pair gets influenced by the unconditional love of the other couple who stayed in that house (house owner and wife).
My only problem with Ok Kanmani was that the conflict portion of the movie sort of looked slim. Ok Jaanu being the remake of that still has that issue. Shaad Ali hasn’t tried to make any drastic creative changes in the films content. But still it doesn’t feel like a scene by scene replica. With actors applying their own style to the characters, Ok Jaanu has managed to have an identity of its own. The viewer’s perception about live in relationships and commitment freak new generation plays a huge role in understanding the zone of the film. The care free attitude of the lead pair doesn’t look artificial and that’s the key reason why the film doesn’t feel like an unrelatable superficial love story.
Like I said in the beginning, the chemistry of the lead pair may not be as attractive as the Tamil version which featured Dulqer Salmaan and Nithya Menen. But Aditya Roy Kapoor and Shraddha Kapoor never tries to copy them. Aditya is pretty much in that cool zone in which we saw him in the first half of YJHD. Towards the climax he was able to convey the emotional conflict effectively. Shraddha Kapoor looked really gorgeous (this would be my personal favorite performance and look of Shraddha). Seeing her in a considerably real character (less filmy drama) was a refreshing experience. Both the actors have a really good vibe which makes the bonding look likeable on screen. Naseeruddin Shah has played the role which Prakash Raj did in the original and Shaad Ali cleverly makes the character a little more progressive than the original. I loved Mr. Shah’s performance and it was important that someone like him should have done that character as the realness of that love story had a lot to do with the pivotal area of Ok Jaanu.
Shaad Ali makes only minimal changes to the content. But like I said, he manages to get more original performances from his actors. Because of that, the tendency to compare the performances and making style scene by scene is not there. Screenplay by Mani Ratnam is swifter when compared to his other films. The re written dialogues were good. Except for the revamped Humma (The rap part annoys me), rest of the tracks was beautiful and A R Rahman has used the background scores he used for the Tamil version. Cinematography of Ravi K Chandran has slightly more brighter frames and we do get to see a lot of shots featuring mirrors in this film.
To conclude I would say Ok Jaanu worked for me. A little bit something was missing from the original, but it still manages to create somewhat the same vibe Ok Kanmani managed to impart. And btw, is Aditya going to his office to develop a game or play a game?
Ok Jaanu worked for me. A little bit something was missing from the original, but it still manages to create somewhat the same vibe Ok Kanmani managed to impart.
Green: Recommended Content
Orange: The In-Between Ones
Red: Not Recommended