2 out of 5 (Okay)
Youngistaan promises to be a youth-centric, pro-change film but its promises are as shallow and superficial as the ones made by many of our real life politicians. Waste of a great opportunity
Mansha Rastogi Sun, 30 Mar 2014
The nation is at the brink of a change. There's enough talk about the upcoming Lok Sabha elections from the streets to high class bureaus. People are fickle-minded while the times conducive enough to release a film on elections and youth with a hope for it to turn into a hit. Youngistaan is one such strategic product. But does it hit the bull's eye? We tell you.
Abhimanyu Kaul (Jackky Bhagnani) a computer game developer and his live-in girlfriend Anvita Chouhan (Neha Sharma) are in a blissful place in their lives in Tokyo when suddenly a call from his father Dashrath Kaul (Boman Irani) changes everything. Dashrath, who is also the Prime Minister of India, is lying on his death-bed in US as he takes a conscious decision of handing over the responsibility of an entire nation his 28 year old son's hands. Even the party - Akhil Bhartiya Kranti Party (ABKP) - supports the decision and Abhimanyu finds himself becoming the PM of India - for an interim period, similarity much? (read Nayak).
With his PA Akbar's (Farooque Shaikh) aide, Abhimanyu starts asserting his power and much against the devious plans of the party members, who considered him good for nothing, starts bringing about the much needed change.
At the outset, Youngistaan is a brilliant concept despite having the feel akin to Anil Kapoor starrer Nayak. But despite a potent plot, all that the movie manages to cull out is the mundane.
The first half of the film is interesting and portions where there hasn't been shown a drastic change in the personality of the main protagonist despite turning into a PM is what's innovative. The fact that despite being the PM of a conservative country he remains into a live-in relationship without falling into the trappings of marriage etc. is pleasantly refreshing.
However, apart from a few novelties there hardly is much in the movie. The references and relevance to the real life situations and characters is way too amateurishly cast and written. So it's not too hard to guess which Political scion the movie is based on, the filmmaker yet doesn't leave a chance to drop hints. You also have media dragged into by basing characters on real life journalists.
The second half starts spiraling downwards with director Syed Ahmad Afzal's focus shifting from Abhimanyu's political battles to personal. The protagonist is caught between the dilemma of either making the nation work or his relationship. You are lulled to nothingness during the second half which slumps majorly not just in pace but also in content.
Jackky Bhagnani portrays his character earnestly and fits the bill too. Neha Sharma on the other hand is quite an irritant.
The late Farooque Shaikh whom you'd probably see the last time on screen is endearing, witty and his usual self in the film. It's quite heart-rending to watch him person on celluloid once again.
Youngistaan, in short, promises to be a youth-centric, pro-change film but its promises are as shallow and superficial as the ones made by many of our real life politicians.
Critic: Mansha Rastogi
2 out of 5 (Okay)