Planet Bollywood
Jeena Sirf Merre Liye
Producer: Vashu Bhagnani
Director: Talat Jani
Starring: Tushar Kapoor, Kareena Kapoor, Alok Nath, Himani Shivpuri, Vijayendra Ghatge
Music: Nadeem-Shravan
Lyrics: Sameer
Genre: Romantic
Recommended Audience: General
Film Released on: 01 November 2002
Reviewed by: Rakesh Budhu  - Rating: 4.5 / 10
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Public Rating Average: 5.11 / 10 (rated by 410 viewers)
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If the common man will not go out of his way to watch a film at a very reduced price ranging from half to three quarter reductions, what must that indicate about a film. Such a question is bound to boggle producer Vashu Bhagnani, director Talat Jani and distributor Video Sound. The company has announced that in the overseas market the films that they will distribute will be available in cinemas for such a reduced ticket price. Of course, horrendous films are viable box office hits, after all this exact team had previously done it a year ago with Mujhe Kucch Kehna Hai. Apparently they felt the wafer-thin "thing" would work again. The wafer thin plot, the wafer thin logic, the wafer thin characters and the wafer thin reason for making the film. This time they have thrown in some wafer thin (in quality) songs courtesy of Nadeem-Shravan. Hence, if any one is into wafers and tea then perhaps Jeena Sirf Merre Liye is exactly what you need. 

Of all the marketing strategies that producer Vashu Bhagnani has up his sleeve, revealing that the film was a re-make of Mehboob Khan´s fifties classic Anmol Ghadi was just another one to simply pass off the poor excuse of a story. And while it is safe to assert that even in the fifties the film wouldn´t have been this bad, director Talat Jani could have at least brought the storyline up to speed to the millennium. Besides, not even referring to execution, the freelancing of the story would make any director of such films cringe.

Like Mujhe Kucch Kehna Hai (and half of Bollywood´s refreshingly different films), Jeena Sirf Merre Liye is a love story about two lovers that can´t be together. Yes, best story awards nominations are being penciled in as we speak. But what makes the film different is that the circumstances that intervene are family related, business related and chances of fate. (And the winner is...) 

Puja (Kareena Kapoor) (and with the name, already there are K3G flashbacks!) and Karan (Tushar) are children in love, who are separated when Puja´s father leaves town on business arrangements. Karan and Puja do meet again but are unaware of their true identities. When they finally do, family matters come in the way. Wealth status, misunderstandings, etc. all must be overcome for Karan and Puja to prove that their love is truly timeless.

If Mujhse Dosti Karoge or even Na Tum Jaano Na Hum, though the latter being a bit more appreciable, weren´t enough attempts at making beautiful romances in tradition of Bollywood´s recent classic romances, Jeena Sirf Merre Liye tarnishes itself midway trying to be one. Not only are situations repeated, obvious and easily predictable they lack the biggest factor that can at least allow the audience to tolerate the scenes, and that is entertainment. Lack of novelty couldn´t have been more boring.

Even though presented on colorful at times extremely eye catchy locations and cinematography by Jonny Lal, the music is horribly inaudible. When Vashu commented that Talat Jani had talent among the lines of Yash Chopra, etc., that didn´t give him the okay to approve the copying of "Tujhe Dekha" from Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge, in his film. The other songs are frequent and un-listenable. This is Nadeem-Shravan´s worst attempt at composing a soundtrack this year and it is simply audacious that the industry and its followers have responded to the soundtrack so positively. Why many complain about copying songs yet advocate that which has been presented so shamelessly in "Tu Hai Sola" is very disappointing. May be Nadeem-Shravan cater to copying songs from other regions frequently as may other composers, but the duo should know there is a line between acceptable and plausible. Unfortunately the industry has made the line less visible after the response the soundtrack faced.

The choreography by Ahmed Khan & Umesh Jadhav is nothing spectacular and simply serves the purpose. "Dupatta" is the best song they could have choreographed but even that pales into comparison to the original "Dupatta" from Mujhe Kucch Kehna Hai.

One really wishes that Kareena Kapoor revert to her awesome performances in Asoka and Refugee. Even Ajnabee had her in a classy role. Now we´re only privy to seeing different variations of Poo from Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham. And we do know the girl has talent.

Tushar has improved since his effort but a better choice of films is still the call of the day. He still seems out of place as a hero, at least in this film. His role is also half baked and typical of heroes leaving much creativity in a performance from him.

Like Mujhe Kucch Kehna Hai the film abounds in supporting characters ranging from Vijayendra Ghatge, Alok Nath, Himani Shivpuri and Kader Khan. Vijayendra Ghatge hams up the typical very powerful mean father while the others seem uninterested. 

Talat Jani hasn´t given reason to his characters let alone give them the depth required for us to identify and feel for them. Rummi Jaffery´s screenplay for Bholu Khan´s story is quite insipid. To add to the woes there are the regular do nots done a plenty in the film. With that in mind, considering the horrendous music and the poor compilations of essential ingredients it is truly hard to justify a high rating for the film.

While Bhagnani has claimed the film to be a tale of timeless love, one wonders what the future will do to this pair. Now that hopefully the hit has been removed from the title of "hit-pair"- Tushar Kapoor and Kareena Kapoor, how will Bhagnani promote his next film which features the exact same cast and director? Hopefully with something different and new, and we aren´t talking about tactics.

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