What would you do if you got a phone call from yourself?
Karthik Calling Karthik, the new sensation on the block starring Farhan Akhtar and Deepika Padukone is director Vijay Lalwani’s first venture in Bollywood so he’s not only directing the film but also co-producing it. The story of KCK has actually been kept under-wraps so we’ve all been very curious to know that what is this film all about… Is a double role story? Is it comedy? Is it romance or drama? Actually KCK is an amazingly fast-paced roller coaster ride from the start to the finish! At times it’s a thriller, at times it’s romantic and at times it’s really scary! This super cool urban tale is the right mix for some new-age cinema.
Karthik Narayan (Farhan Akhtar) is a shy, introvert, unmotivated, under-confident geeky doormat. He’s bullied by his boss, his landlord and his colleagues; he has no friends, no family, the girl he loves doesn’t even know he exists; and he’s bogged down by the guilt of being responsible for the accidental death of his sibling when he was just a child. Basically Karthik is a loser and he knows this and believes it. When his life seems to be heading no where Karthik decides to take the easy way out and put an end to his misery with the help of some sleeping pills and just as he’s about to do it, his phone rings! It’s Karthik… calling Karthik! A mysterious caller who claims to also be Karthik offers him a chance to improve his life… to set everything right… to get the girl of his dreams and Karthik accepts. But nothing in this world comes for free and what price lies behind this mysterious phone call that can make or break Karthik’s life?
What makes KCK a tantalizing watch is the pace of the film. Just 10 mins into the movie you’re sucked into the mystery of the phone call. One is kept guessing between psychological and supernatural as each new mystery unfolds in Karthik’s life. I loved the point at which the film breaks for the interval… the entire phone-anxiety bit is superbly played. In the first half the pace dips slightly when the story concentrates on Karthik and Shonali’s love story but then again the whole urban-office style wooing is really, really cute! The story comes right back on track at the interval and post that it turns into a dark and dangerous thriller. Having Karthik’s doctor (Shefali Shah) talk to the Karthik on the phone was an excellent touch because when this happens then you’re completely like… ok now I have no idea or guesses about this mysterious caller! The climax is a bit of a let down but then if I think about it, any other way of culminating this story would have seemed very crass. The thrill-factor in the second half is commendable, the camera work, background score and the cinematography perfectly complement the feel of the film. I really liked the analogy of the Rubik’s Cube when Karthik’s life is perfect the cube is solved perfectly as and when his life gets messier, the cube gets more chaotic… smartly done. Vijay Lalwani’s also responsible for the crisp dialogues of the film that bring out humour with wit.
The way Karthik takes control of his life with advice from his phone friend is too much fun to watch. His new kick-ass avatar vis-à-vis his Surinder-Sahni-do exhibits just how fine an actor Farhan Akhtar is! Growing from the closet rock star in Rock on to the confident prick in Luck by Chance and now flitting between a loser and an achiever in KCK, Farhan Akhtar is undoubtedly one of the finest new heroes in Bollywood today. Deepika also performs brilliantly, she’s very natural and her costumes are amazing especially the formal office wear… makes her look oh-so-chic! Shefali Shah and Ram Kapoor are competent while Vivan Bhatena holds his part well.
Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy’s music is refreshing and it goes with the whole urban-techno feel of the film. The most popular tracks Hey Ya! and Uff Teri Adaa rule the film as well but personally I love the title track which plays as a background through out the film… it’s eerie, mysterious and beautiful all at the same time!
Overall KCK is totally worth a trip to the theatres! Watch this one for its unique story and the fast paced thriller ride. Though this may not be a hit with the masses because with its Hinglish dialogues and very city-feel KCK caters to only a niche segment of audiences in the metros but if you appreciate something hatke then absolutely go for it!
Rating – 3.5/5