The gangster genre isn't new for Bollywood. Several known and lesser-known directors have portrayed the lives of mobsters/criminals/goons on the silver screen. Serious fares like SATYA, VAASTAV, COMPANY and GANGSTER or light entertainers like the MUNNABHAI series continue to have tremendous recall value even today. JAYANTABHAI KI LUV STORY, the love story of a thug, tries to follow the footsteps of MUNNABHAI, but in vain.
Besides a heart that pulsates for his sweetheart, depicting the goon as someone with a heart of gold is also mandatory. JAYANTABHAI KI LUV STORY hinges on a plot that's slimmer than a chip and encompasses everything it has to offer in the first hour itself. But, as luck would have it, it runs out of fuel in the post-interval portions.
Opposites attract! Jayantabhai and his lady love are as diverse as chalk and cheese… that's the perfect recipe for a rom-com. Add to it a dash of bhaigiri. Director Vinnil Markan may have an interesting concept on hand, but it gets lost in a muddled drama. The culprit? Screenwriting, of course. The film springs a pleasant surprise in its first hour, with several pleasurable episodes and one-liners [bhaigiri lingo] managing to bring a smile on your face. But the writer [Kiran Kotrial] stacks up cliches in the post-interval portions, which seem far from invigorating and get tedious after a point. The sub-plot involving the villain [Nasser] appears half-baked. The portions involving Simi's father [Shishir Sharma] lack fizz. The finale is abrupt and prior to that, the episode featuring Vivek barging into an office [where Neha has an appointment for an interview], seems ludicrous. Additionally, the romantic scenes could've done with more heart. To cut a long story short, the second hour lacks the simple charm that was evident in the first half. Clearly, the clever writing and genuine humor is missing here!
Vinnil Markan, taking his first stab at direction, handles the light moments with flourish. He sure knows how far to stretch a joke. But Vinnil flounders subsequently, since the writing lets him down. Sachin-Jigar's music is a mixed bag. 'Aa Bhi Jaa' is the sole track you'd like to hum after the show has concluded. I'd like to make a special mention of the witty dialogue, especially the lines delivered by Vivek. They are genuinely funny.
Vivek is endearing and acts his part with earnestness. The actor has portrayed similar roles in the past [that of a Bhai], but he ensures he brings about variation this time. Neha looks alluring and radiates confidence. The chemistry between the lead pair is also a plus. Nasser is wasted in an insignificant role. Zakir Hussain is getting typecast. Ditto for Rahul Singh.
On the whole, JAYANTABHAI KI LUV STORY has enjoyable moments, but they are limited to the first hour!