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MOVIE REVIEW December 2004

December 2004
MOVIE REVIEW December 2004


Starring: Shah Rukh Khan, Preity Zinta, Rani Mukherjee

Director: Yash Chopra

Music Director: Late Madan Mohan

Veer-Zaara is the quintessential Yash Chopra film ? lots of romance in mustard/sunflower fields, gushing waterfalls, songs and emotions aplenty. Last but certainly not the least, it has its hero and heroine running towards each other from opposite directions to give that one passionate embrace. The difference, if you can call it one, lies in the backdrop: The Swiss Alps are out, Pakistan is in.

Squadron Leader Veer Pratap Singh (Shah Rukh Khan) falls in love with a Pakistani girl Zaara Hayat Khan (Preity Zinta) and after twists and turns and 22 years in a Pakistani jail, is finally reunited with his lady love by a rookie lawyer Samiya Siddiqui (Rani Mukherjee). Yes, this cross-border love story is clich�-ridden all right but what's a Yash Chopra film without those clich�s!

Shah Rukh Khan recently said, "I sleepwalk through romantic roles now". He's right, he's done too many of them to go wrong. Preity plays the perfect Yash Chopra heroine: she looks dreamy and graceful. Together they share a warm chemistry. But it is Rani Mukherjee who walks away with the best lines and a powerful performance. It is through her character that issues of female literacy and women's empowerment seep into the narrative.

If you're looking for plenty of eye-candy, Veer Zaara will not let you down. Art director Sharmistha Roy and cinematographer Anil Mehta give this "love epic" a lustrous classic look.

Music by the late Madan Mohan is mellifluous. Main Yahan Hoon is haunting.

Refreshingly, there's no jingoism. As Amitabh Bachchan's character (in a guest appearance) casually points out, "Hindustani ho, Pakistani ho ya phir Chini, Japani - ki farak painda hai"? (What difference does it make?)

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