But times are changing rapidly. Marriage as an institution isn’t sacrosanct anymore, with divorce becoming a commonality in urban India. Breaking free from a relationship calls for a celebration these days, with theme parties being organized to celebrate ‘freedom’.
JODI BREAKERS narrates the story of a couple [R. Madhavan and Bipasha Basu, in this case] who help break up miserable, disgruntled couples. What makes JODI BREAKERS an innovative experience for Hindi moviegoers is the fact that a majority of our films are about people falling in love, but this one is about a pair that specializes in separation. It tells you to break the shackles and find a path of your own, after love goes wrong.
Wait! Does the plot ring a bell? Does JODI BREAKERS borrow inspiration from two films, as the rumor mills want us to believe, LAWS OF ATTRACTION [Pierce Brosnan, Julianne Moore] and the French film HEARTBREAKER [Romain Duris, Vanessa Paradis]? Not really, barring a similar-sounding title with the latter. In fact, a few random moments bring back memories of YRF’s immensely likeable BAND BAAJA BAARAAT.
To put things in the right perspective, JODI BREAKERS is routine, clichÃ©d and formulaic, at least initially. Add lazy and unenergetic too. Director Ashwini Chaudhary doesn’t get a grip of things, except in a couple of sequences. But the twist and turns in the post-interval portions are of an interesting variety [writer: Aakash Kaushik], with a major chunk of the second hour succeeding in making you erase whatever misgivings you may have had from the first hour.
Sid [R. Madhavan], a divorcee, realizes that happy marriages are a myth. He decides to become a break-up specialist on a rebound. He comes into contact with Sonali [Bipasha Basu] and the duo decides to become jodi breakers. But a major incident changes their lives and the duo decides to rectify the wrong they had committed.
JODI BREAKERS is a mixed bag, frankly. It’s like watching two different films in those two hours. Let me explicate. The first half is largely dry and insipid and talks of jodi breakers. The succeeding half is exactly the reverse. It holds your attention since the characters change gears. The drama in the post-interval portions compensates for the blemishes that stare at you initially. The film concludes on an extremely pleasant note, which is what the viewer actually carries with him/her when he/she exits the auditorium.
Director Ashwini Chaudhary has the makings of a fine raconteur. This, one realized much earlier [DHOOP] and now, in JODI BREAKERS, Ashwini proves his credentials yet again. What’s noteworthy is that he keeps the drama straightforward, unfussy and unpretentious. Besides, he makes his lead pair shine magnificently in the radiance of a well-tailored script.
The songs of JODI BREAKERS have already merited a place in popular charts and ace composers Salim-Sulaiman deserve credit for it. It’s a damn good soundtrack, with several tracks staying fresh in your memory — ‘Kunwara’, ‘Darmiyaan’ and ‘Bipasha’. Even the song in the finale, which may give an impression that it’s forced in the narrative, helps the story move forward. The cinematography [Arun Varma] is of standard, with the scenic locales of Greece and Goa giving the film that rich texture.
JODI BREAKERS holds your attention for a key reason. It doesn’t fall prey to the conventional pairing. While he captured the hearts of cinegoers playing the conventional good boy in TANU WEDS MANU, Madhavan does a somersault in JODI BREAKERS. He underplays his character ingeniously and is incredible when he communicates his sentiments. Bipasha looks fresh, glamorous and most importantly, one hasn’t watched her in the way you will get to see in JODI BREAKERS. Part of a rom-com for the first time, let me tell you, she is very good in the film. Besides, she’s sure to send viewers into raptures in the ‘Bipasha’ track. The tender moments between Madhavan and Bipasha are tastefully handled.
Milind Soman and Dipannita Sharma are truly wonderful. Mrinalini Sharma portrays her part with gusto. Omi Vaidya provides some laughs, especially in the Baba Kamdev sequence. Tarana Raja is first-rate, while Helen adds sparkle to her part.
On the whole, JODI BREAKERS has an engrossing and smartly executed second half that tilts scales in its favor. The right dose of drama and romance, besides a trendy, harmonious musical score, only act as toppings.