Karthik Calling Karthik Movie Review

From Farhan Akhtar you expect quality films, Karthik Calling Karthik is no different. The title itself arouses a bit of curiosity, imagine waking up to a call from someone who claims to be you..! Add to it the fact that the film is coming from the producers of films like Dil Chahta Hai and Rock On, your expectations soar sky high. But does it live up? 

Karthik (Farhan Akhtar) is a loser, a very shy introvert, a nerd.. you name it. He suffers from self consciousness and a serious lack of confidence. His job at a company isn’t going great, his boss doesn’t treat him well. His crush Shonali (Deepika Padukone) doesn’t care, she hardly knows he exists. In short – he leads a life, noone would want to.

One night, he gets a call from someone who claims to be Karthik. Who says, he’s here to change his life. The  caller soon becomes his friend, guiding him and changing his life forever.

What works for Karthik Calling Karthik

  • 45 minutes of the second half, a bit of thrill and mystery.
  • Farhan’s restrained performance that is sure to win him accolades.
  • The music (Shankar – Ehsaan – Loy) is good.
  • The chemistry that Deepika and Farhan share, makes the love story work to an extent.
  • Deepika’s wardrobe, styling and the way she carries it with that fantastic smile, more than makes up for her  inconsequential role.

What doesn’t work for Karthik Calling Karthik

  • The first half is stretched. Karthik’s transformation from a nerd to a dude isn’t convincing. Everything is rushed and frankly, too hard to digest
  • The way the disorder is identified, the way it is explained on screen.. just doesn’t work.
  • Karthik Calling Karthik also suffers from being way too predictable, especially for a thriller. The climax is a damp squib.
  • The movie as a whole is far from convincing, for example, when Deepika starts liking Farhan, he confesses his disorder to her. Her reaction and the scenes that follow, seem so immature, not something you expect from makers of such fantastic films in the past.

Overall, the concept sure was interesting, but the writing and execution fall way short of expectations. Farhan’s performance and music are the only saving graces of this very disappointing film. We certainly expected better, much better. Watch it, if you have nothing to do this weekend.

Rating: ★★☆☆☆
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24 Comments

  • ooops !! now this is something really unexpected. I could’ve expected Teen Patti to be bad…but never could expect this from KCK…

    Indicine…if half of what you have said is true…then it will be a huge disappointment for me. you are right…one can not expect a lesser product from the makers of a classic like DCH, and the brilliant couple of films in the form of Rock on and LBC.

    I guess this proves that presuming anything is wrong. :(

  • indicine dont you think 2 stars are not good for this kind of movie ?
    it deserve at least 2.5
    btw my review will up within 10,15 minutes.
    sorry for delat at this time.

  • Karthik Calling Karthik Movie Review

    Cast: Farhan Akhtar, Deepika Padukone, Shifali Chaya, Ram Kapoor
    Genre: Mystery, Suspense
    Direction: Vijay Lalwani

    Music: Shankar Ehsan Loy
    Duration: 2 hours 14 minutes

    Bollywood comes up with mystery movies once or twice in a year. Last year we had 8×10 Tasveer and now Karthik is calling us. It is very difficult to make a mystery thriller and keep the charm of suspense till the end.

    Farhan’s last two releases as a lead actor got critical appreciation. Rock on was a success among the audience. Luck By Chance on the other hand was a Box Office Failure. Not many mystery based thrillers have been a winner at Indian Box Office. Now lets see how did the Karthik’s call go.

    Story:

    Karthik (Farhan Akhtar) has lack of self-confidence; he is introverted and a loser in his life. He doesn’t have a good job and his friend circle is empty. His colleagues never notice him that he is also working with them. He loves Shonali (Deepika Paducone) who has been his colleague for last couple of years but even she doesn’t know that he is working with her. One day he decides to commit suicide and while he is trying to take sleeping pills suddenly his landline phone rings. When he picks up the phone, he hears his own voice on the other side and that voice claims to be the voice of Karthik himself. He is scared by that call and he hangs up the phone but next day at the same time he gets the same very call. That voice gives him lots of suggestions and suddenly his life totally changes. He gets back to track with his job earns a better post, he gets his confidence back and even Shonali starts loving him.

    Who is that caller? How he knows every single thing about Karthik? Why he helps him? Movie is about that.

    Script is very interesting and screenplay is according to basic theme. Farhan’s character is interesting and suites him.

    Strong Points of the movie:

    · Idea is unique and has been executed very well.

    · Performances of both lead actors are superb.

    · Deepika’s hot and sexy look will make warm up your heart.

    · Director has handled the basic idea very well.

    · Music is really awesome.

    Scenes that mesmerize you:

    · Farhan’s first day at office and his daily routine has been well executed.

    · All phone conversations are mind blowing

    · When Farhan’s conversation with his boss after acquiring new self-belief.

    · When Shifali comes to Farhan’s home to receive the phone call.

    · When Deepika comes to Farhan’s home to receive the phone call.

    · When Farhan escapes from himself and tries to escape to an unknown place.

    · All romantic portions between Farhan and Deepika in 1st half especially when Farhan takes Deepika to his office and shows her all unsent emails.

    Performances:

    · Farhan has improved himself very well. After the failure of Luck By Chance he has comeback with a different idea and a much better performance. He is perfect for Karthik’s role and he has done fantastic job.

    · Deepika is also superb. She looks hot and beautiful. Her eyes and smile speak all the dialogues. She is not that good like Love Aaj kal but better then her other previous releases.

    · Shfiali Chaya has small role. In a role of Farhan’s psychiatrist she has given an honest performance.

    Direction:

    Movie is directed by Vijay Lalwani which is his debut movie both as a writer and director. He has selected a novel idea and has executed it very well. Most of the time main story starts after the interval and 1st half is full of songs, love, fun and comedy. But Vijay has stuck to his script. After 15, 20 minutes into the movie Karthik’s phone call holds audience attention.

    Songs are situational.

    He has missed at the climax but overall his direction was superb.

    Music:

    Shankar Ehasan Loy are back with Karthik Calling Karthik. 2009 was not good enough for them. None of their music creation got hit tag but they have started 2010 very well with KCK.

    Every single song is worth listening and all songs give you fresh feeling. Uff Teri Ada and Heyy Ya are the best songs of the album. Others Songs are good too.

    Back ground score is also plus point Midival Punditz has done a good job. Especially when phone rings and when both Karthiks have conversation on phone.

    Negative Points:

    · Movie doesn’t have enough flaws or negative points. Even when I watched it I couldn’t find any negative point. The problem is I can’t explain whole thing which I want to discuss. Because if I will tell you that thing suspense factor will be lost. I can explain only one thing that climax and conclusion is not up to the standard. When you will find out that what was the mystery may be you will like it and you will think that it should be like this. But, when you will think deeply about that you wont agree with that.

    · When Farhan told to Deepika that he gets the calls from his self her attitude was not helpful for him. She starts thinking about breakup instead of she should help him about this problem.

    Overall:

    Overall Karthik Calling Karthik is well made and well executed mystery movie which has good storyline, decent performances and melodious music. Better climax would have taken the movie to another level.

    Rating:

    What are you waiting for go to theaters and get a call from karthik.

    3 / 5
    bollyplus.com

  • Nauman your reviews are so long that i sleep half walk through it. Write shorter reviews man this is the age of twitter and facebook. too long is too boring noone has patience to read. Like that negative first point you could have said it in one line but you took 6 lines. everybody prefers to the point reviews.

    Some things let me ask you

    How come farhan changed so much so soon? How does he suddenly get the girl? why does she ditch him as soon as she finds out? didnt you find farhans voice as the telephone karthik too weird? it was almost like he was reaching an orgasm.

    I think deepika was bad in each of her films.

    And sorry romantic scenes didnt work for me… 3 is wayyyyyyyyyy too much for KCK

  • Indicine ..I haven’t watched Kck yet ..coz its not releasing here n m quite pissed off I wanted to c Farhan n Deepika starrer.Nauman really liked kck but as u know I hardly agree with him:) Let me watch it on dvd n then I will tell u abt my views.Anyways nice short review :)

    @Nauman ..Really post short reviews as suniel said it gets boring.Anyways gud review as usual :)

  • @ Nauman,

    Very nice and Detailed review brother. Tell you what…your reviews are getting better and better. It is very visible that you are taking the comments of other members very positively and are continuously improving the quality of ur review. Best of luck for all your future ventures buddy.

    @ Hina,

    :) Sis…actually i wanted you to read another msg that i posted for you. Its on the last page of Indicine’s review of MNIK (that comment will lead you to one my older msgs for you) which i believe you hadn;t read. So as an elder brother..i want you to read both of those msgs.

    And yeah … i also wanted to watch KCK in theater (

  • @nauman
    Bollywood comes up with mystery movies once or twice in a year. Last year we had 8×10 Tasveer and now Karthik is calling us. It is very difficult to make a mystery thriller and keep the charm of suspense till the end.

    Bhai jaan i think u havent seen “The stoneman Murder ” it was one of the best suspense movie churned out by bollywood . it stars Kay kay menon. it released in feb 2009 . watch it out

  • manish,
    i am really sorry that i forgot about The Stoneman Murder… i liked that movie but i think it is not a mystery movie it was simple murder suspense movie. but the reason of all murders was a psycho person.

    Indicine team , i dont know what i hv to say . but believe me i didnt like that now a days you are not getting more users and none of any one is putting there comments. in 18 hours you got only 11 comments yet on this page. what is wrong ? what is problem ? do u think people didnt like ur new version or posting comment is very hard now . even lots of people couldn’t login their self yet.
    you need to double check every your site and all possibilities.
    believe me it was really surprise me that only 10,11 comments on this page.
    you know all Veer’s pages got more than 500 comments and some got 800+ comments and more than 12 pages . but now u couldnt finish your one page. even MNIK is empty , only 3 pages yet.
    what is this.
    now i am also in this profession/business so i can understand . believe me i cant sleep now every day every time i hv to think abut bollyplus. daily i hv to call to my designers and programmers for discussion. and u updates ur whole site more than 1000 pages , more than 1 lakh comments. but why all are useless ???
    you know that i gave u compliment that u guys are my trainer you guys trained me lots of things. Especially which review style every one likes i got from you. I launched a site after watching your new version on 4th Jan 2010. just let me know what was the reason to make this stupid login system. just put an option ” Remember Me” which i already put in my site. It was enough . and you know that what was specialty? your site was a discussion site about bollywood. But now you have only bollywood site. Discussion has finished like all other sites.
    these all are my personal opinions i don’t know what others think.
    hope you will take it positive criticism.
    thx

  • Well said nauman I used to visit indicine after every 2 hrs to see the latest comments being made. I also liked the blackish theme of website. But now with such a light theme and so much mess in the home page I am visiting indicine after 3 days which is a record for me.
    I dont know abt other users but I am comfortable with this version and I also dont like the theme as well.
    They should have stick to the older version.

  • Bad news for all SRK fans

    Bollybusiness : Bollywood boxoffice

    MNIK

    MNIK 2 weeks collections are 58 Crores

    Meanwhile MNIK dropped heavily today and show occupancy as low as 5% . 15th Day of MNIK should end up making 30-35 Lakhs.

    Verdict – Flop or Below average

  • Nauman, appreciate the time you have taken out to post your feedback.. :)

    Regarding comments. Its not the number of comments, but the number of quality comments that matter. Also, some users are having trouble logging in, due to the image verification part. We are removing it on Monday, so from now on, it will just be user name and password to login.

    About the user registration system. We had to do it. Because a many readers were creating multiple Id’s and just spamming around. It was getting real tough to moderate all comments, some users were even using the name “Indicine Team” and posting fake comments. It was getting real tough to manage it, we had to hire a guy just to take care of the comments.

    The other reason is the User Reviews system. If anyone can anonymously post reviews, the scoring system would literally be useless.

    Gurvinder, going back to the older version is unfortunately not an option now. And it would take time for the dust to settle, we think. We are constantly working on improving things, so any suggestions would be appreciated.

  • indicine Team,
    best of luck with your new version.
    thx u liked my review but honestly i have to say that i am not very intelligent person. I wrote the review but Hina did proof reading for me. She is very helpful girl.
    i dont know when i speak english in australia every one appriciate and none of any one said to me that your grammar is not correct. but here lots of people always mention that my grammar is very poor even Hina took so long for proof reading.
    indicine do u know what people hate on internet ?
    only 2 things
    1. slow speed
    2. image verifications. ones a time when u make any hotmail or yahoo id is ok but every day on indicine or any other site uffff , why dont u make remember me option like my site. we made remember me option and now no need to write ur name every time. one time in one page.
    lets see quality of comments. because i am 100 % sure just wait for any biggie then fish market will start again like Veer , DDD and so many other movies in the past.
    one more thing i want to say that. i said to Hina that we have to make our site more rich and estethic and she said to me that simple site is good ” Indicine ne Naya version nikal ke apni site ka Satiya Naas maar liya na” ab tum aisa kuch na karna. Satiya naas mean apna nuqsan kar lia. i don’t know indian guys are familiar with this word or not.

    Suniel you are write this is time of twiter and facebook, long reviews always make you bore even i never read any review in detail. just read negative and positive points , performances and rating.
    but review of Teen Patti i wrote very short and to the point.

    • Nauman, really like your honestly mate. Keep it up. Thanks for your concern about Indicine too, appreciate it.

      Regarding your site, we can’t do much, promoting it in comments isn’t allowed. We’ll put up the link of your site, in our “other links” page as soon as its complete. :) Thanks

  • I saw the movie yesterday.. not good.. will watch my name is khan again it is ruling the world…. best movie ever.

  • indicine thanks
    even i hv said to my technical team who are making that site that plz put indicine’s link on main page. if you will visit our site then we will see we are putting some famous sites’ links like google , yahoo , facebook , cricinfo and off course indicine.com
    i wont promote my site any more but if i will post my review or any other information which i post in my site i will write name of my site as a source , and i think it is 100 % legal and it should be allow. Am I right ?
    one more thing that in starting we were facing fake comments problem , but now every thing is under control even some one post comments with your name. so, for solution i already sent you e mail where i mentioned that you can post ur comment with only that e mail id. if you didn’t get then let me know i will send you again. we are waiting your precious comments in our site. hope you will visit .

  • IBOS NETWORK.COM

    THIS IS FOR ALL CINEMA LOVERS

    My Name is Declined: Looking ahead at Shahrukh Khan’s career outlook after MNIK demise
    Monday, February 22, 2010

    Dev Patel of the $370 million (Rs. 1700 crore)
    grosser Slumdog Millionaire is a bigger
    international star than Shahrukh Khan

    The difference between a star and a superstar is that while a star gives hits occasionally, a superstar (whoever he is at the time) is expected to give the biggest hit and the superstar’s films are always expected to take the biggest, top initial across India at the box office. To be excluded from this are actresses like Katrina Kaif or a Kareena Kapoor, who while maybe considered top heroines, are almost always incidental to the film’s box office fate. That is to say, you can replace one with the other and it wouldn’t affect the film’s box office all that much. Barring a Meena Kumari, Hema Malini, Sridevi, Madhuri Dixit and to a lesser extent Aishwarya Rai (though some would dispute this too), heroines don’t have much impact on box office fates of Indian films.

    That brings the discussion to primarily in the domain of actors and leading men, of which Shahrukh Khan has been billed, by the media atleast, as the #1 leading man at the box office, a proposition that continuously falls on its face time and again. In fact Shahrukh Khan has repeatedly failed to measure up to the claim despite heavy political and media support for this actor over the past 15 years. To start off breaking this down before we do the lookahead, let’s use a man he often used to compare himself to for these types of comparisions earlier, Amitabh Bachchan.

    Today in his 60s, Amitabh Bachchan is a star who occasionally delivers hits like Black or Paa or Cheeni Kum. But Amitabh Bachchan was the undisputed superstar of the box office from January 1975 (when Deewar opened at 100% box office on 24th January 1975 and went on to run a platinum jubilee running next to Sholay later in the year) to January 1989 when after opening to 100% and a record box office response, Ganga Jamuna Saraswati crashed in its 2nd week. Still, even after the Ganga Jamuna Saraswati crash the biggest opener of 1989 was not Salman Khan’s Maine Pyaar Kiya, or Anil Kapoor’s Ram Lakhan but rather Amitabh Bachchan’s Toofan. Similarly the biggest opener of 1990 wasn’t Aamir Khan’s Dil or Salman Khan’s post-MPK release Baaghi or even Sunny Deol’s Ghayal, but rather it was Bachchan’s Aaj Ka Arjun. In 1991, the biggest opener was again Amitabh Bachchan’s recordbreaking opener Hum. Even in the ‘disputed’ phase of his ‘reign’ as the superstar, he was delivering the #1 initials and remained the highest paid actor till 1998. But in most of the years between 1973-1992, Bachchan starrers were the top grossers and occasionally as happened to be the case in 1978, the top 4 grossers of the year (Muqaddar Ka Sikandar, Don, Trishul, Ganga Ki Saugandh).

    Now let’s bring this back to Shahrukh Khan. Even in his prime, Shahrukh Khan was never the undisputed superstar unlike Amitabh Bachchan. Right after Kuch Kuch Hota Hai in 1998, his next: Baadshah, sunk; failing to take the top opening of 1999 and then flattening out. Shahrukh Khan was not in either biggest opener nor the biggest grosser of the decade of the 1990s nor of the 2000s. And many feel if he sustained near the top through the 2000s, it was more to do with fact that most of new entries of 2000s decade such as Vivek Oberoi, Abhishek Bachchan, Uday Chopra, Ritesh Deshmukh, Abhay Deol were more there due to family labels and lacked either ambition or talent themselves. But despite this, Shahrukh Khan’s films year in and out did not take the #1 initial. His biggest blockbusters were prone to being outinitialed or outgrossed by films of other 2 Khans, along with a Hrithik Roshan, Sunny Deol (circa Gadar) and couple others like Akshay Kumar later on. Now granted none of them went on to dominate box office themselves, but none of them go around claiming to be Kings or #1s either.

    Which is exactly what the problem with Shahrukh Khan is and has been. Despite the Indian media collective and congress government literally taking the country’s resources and putting it on the line for this guy, his biggest film ever, My Name Is Khan failed to open anywhere near the top, missing the top in opening at the box office by a distance and will have had a comparatively premature demise at the end also, causing many losses. By the end of the year, several films of several stars will leave box office collections of Khan in the dust.

    And now after MNIK, Shahrukh Khan does not have any more releases coming up this year. He’s 45 and it is difficult to see where his trajectory goes from here as he’s facing a number of problems. Let’s examine these problems in detail and regardless of political correctness.

    Firstly though he aspires to be an international star, internationally he will never be reaching level of even a Dev Patel (of the $370 million grossing Slumdog Millionaire fame) let alone an Antonio Banderas in the 90s, a crossover star there, due to cultural reasons. A muslim chanting ‘My Name Is Khan’ was never going to become a big star in America, and only a deluded understanding of USA held by likes of Karan Johar would have imagined so. Johar’s understanding of India itself is doubtful let alone America, Karan Johar is a bigger deal among industry tweeters than he is with Indian audiences. Which is why his Koffee with Karan or Lift Kara De end up getting lower TRPs in India than many other trivial shows. What is going to be an advantage in Karachi will be a disadvantage in mainstream Chicago or Chandrapur as we’ll discuss below. America is a liberal country and tolerates muslims also, but it is not a foolish country, or unidimensional the way depicted in ridiculous bollywood cinema like Kurbaan and MNIK. These movies have no chance outside the usual Karan Johar/Khan segments from handful of countries settled as generation 1 migrants to USA.

    So mainstream America is out for Shahrukh Khan. If the goal then is to become a middle eastern icon because of his proclivity to utter My Name Is Khan, then well there are a couple problems with that also. Culturally, the mid-east is not particularly homogeneously understanding of Hindi nor liberal enough overall which cinema needs. Secondly, and more importantly, a Qatar or a Baharain or even Pakistan, they are not all that consequential compared to India economically, let alone the west. If they were, they would have had their own established film industries by now. India is ahead of them all. It is the world’s 2nd largest country by population and one of the major markets on earth, and will always be the dominant, determining market for Hindi films, with an economy that’s outperforming the global recession and even some western countries. In Mumbai, many multiplexes’ ticket rates are now about same as what US customers pay at US theaters. Ticket prices in even multiplexes like Indore, Madhya Pradesh and Kanpur are now substantial, except since Mumbai is quite saturated this is where the major theater economy growth will be coming in the years ahead. So if you keep your eye on the ball, the arrows are pointing towards the Hindi markets once more, and you can’t ignore the audiences’ sensibilities there.

    Following off from that, secondly, because of the increasing cloud around his ’support for Pakistanis like Sohail Tanvir’ politics, the middle India audiences are tuning Shahrukh Khan out. Especially middle class and mass screens Hindus (which were never particularly heavily in support of Shahrukh Khan cinema anyway). This is backed up by increasingly pedestrian TRPs when he is on television which is more dominated by this demographic. But bottomline is even at box office you can’t get to those top all India initials let alone top overall grossers if the Hindis don’t let you. It simply can’t be done. It can work the other way (ex. Gadar) but not in this direction.

    Finally his politics apart, the other big problem for Shahrukh Khan is now age, which is not on his side. He’s closer to 50 than 30. An entire new generation of audiences has entered the theaters to whom overseas locales are no big deal, are much more confident about India (last year’s big hits: 3I, Ajab Prem, Paa etc. all primarily set in India) and for whom Shahrukh Khan-Kajol movies like Kuch Kuch Hota Hai are themselves old, dated cinema.

    This happens to all stars and aspiring superstars at some point. And there is nothing to be done about that. New stars are here and will come who will look, fresher, quicker, and more in tune with the times than Khan. And it will strike to him that people don’t go to cinemas to watch khans. They go to cinema to get entertained. And accumulated hostilites from the Hindus, and accumulated wrinkles on the face, accumulated lack of speed brought on by the natural process of aging, tend to point to Shahrukh Khan’s declining fortunes in the coming years. Not unlike an Anil Kapoor after the early-90s, if he’s lucky.

    The days of staking claim to the #1 superstardom for Shah Rukh Khan have been gone for a few years now and are probably gone forever. The question is how long can he delay the inevitable and remain a star.

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