Karan Johar is one of the most loved and respected directors in the industry and Student Of The Year – his first film without Shahrukh Khan – is probably his biggest test. With 3 newcomers, Karan returns to what he does best, a candy floss romcom starring Varun Dhawan, Siddarth Malhotra and Alia Bhatt. The film also features Rishi Kapoor and little Anjali (now 24) from Kuch Kuch Hota Jai, Sana Saeed.
Story: Student Of The Year is set in St Teresa’s High School, one of the most prestigious schools in the country. Most students here are filthy rich, drive a Ferrari and wear designer clothes. One such student is Rohan Nanda (Varun Dhawan), son of one of India’s richest men (played by Ram Kapoor). Rohan doesn’t get along with his father, who is overtly critical and under-estimates him. He is in love with Shanaya Singhania (Alia Bhatt). She loves him too, but isn’t too comfortable with Rohan’s closeness with school mate Tanya (Sana Saeed).
Enter Abhimanyu Singh (Siddharth Malhotra), who comes from a middle-class background and has ambitions of making it big. Initially he doesn’t get along with Rohan, but after a Football match, the two become good friends. Soon, Abhimanyu falls for Shanaya, who also has feelings towards him. Or does she?
There is also a major school competition for the prized ‘Student Of The Year’ trophy.
Student Of The Year Review
Student Of The Year is a typical Karan Johar film; with slightly over-the-top characters, huge sets, beautiful costumes – infact, every frame in the film is picture-perfect and larger-than-life. Every newcomer gets a grand intro; Varun Dhawan as a rockstar, Alia Bhatt’s reminds you of Poo (Kareena) in K3G and Siddarth Malhotra makes a Hrithik Roshan like entry.
The first half is a lot of fun, and at times, reminds you of classics like Main Hoon Na and Jo Jeeta Wohi Sikhander. The film has drama, subtle romance but never gets melodramatic. Karan Johar films are known to make the audience cry, Student Of The Year doesn’t. It’s more of a fun-filled entertainer, than a emotional drama.
It wouldn’t be incorrect to say, this is Karan Johar’s most light-hearted and fun film since his directorial debut Kuch Kuch Hota Hai. He narrates the story through a series of flashbacks, which culminates into a brilliantly written and executed climax.
So any negatives? Not many. The film tends to drag a bit in the second half. Also, the length (2 hours 26 mins) should ideally have been shorter.
Vishal-Shekhar’s music and background score goes well with the film. Disco Dewaane and Ishq Wala Love are my personal favorites. Niranjan Iyengar’s dialogues are well-written. Ayananka’s camerawork is extraordinary.
The performances are good. Varun Dhawan is fantastic and performs like a seasoned actor. He looks good on-screen and emotes well. Alia Bhatt has to be one of the cutest newcomers in the industry. She looks stunning in a bikini too. Acting-wise, she does well, but her character doesn’t really demand on-screen histrionics. Siddharth Malhotra gets a few scenes right, but he has a along way to go as an actor. He doesn’t quite get his expressions right in a few important scenes. Again, it’s only his debut, he will improve. Rishi Kapoor is brilliant as a gay dean. Ronit Roy is effective. Kayoze Irani (Boman Irani’s son) makes a confident debut. Ram Kapoor is fabulous. Sana Saeed looks hot. There are several special appearances in the film – Kajol, Boman Irani, Farah Khan, Vaibhabi Merchant. And no, you wont get to see SRK in SOTY.
Overall, there isn’t a dull moment in Student Of The Year. It has something in it for everyone – romance, action, entertainment, good performances and catchy music. Go for it.Rating: