Not much of a fun ride…Why the youth doesn’t need more cinema like Karwaan!


“A doomed youth is romantic, but a doomed middle-age? Not so much.” These words, that I first heard in the Bradley Cooper classic – Burnt – never seemed truer when I left the hall after watching a lost cause that was Karwaan.

The film was not so much about a road trip than it was about being immature, irresponsible and being rebellious without a cause. The vague plot leaves you with a subtle sense of emptiness and fools you into thinking that you might have watched something very meaningful unfold right before your eyes. I got to give it to Akarsh Khurana (director) for pulling off that trick.

I don’t understand what is the obsession with the connection between youth and road trips? If the fascination with road trips was not enough, romanticizing the idea of parental pressure straying you off the path of your dreams has been done to death. The likes of Tamasha, Udaan, and 3 Idiots did it long before it was ‘cool’ to lament and blame your unconvincing inefficiencies on your parents who were just looking out for you! And this is what our protagonist Avinash (Dalquer Salmaan) realizes at the end of the movie (half of which he wasted in summoning the frustrating angry-man-look inspired by Shahid Kapoor in Jab We Met. Yes, it was that annoying.) It took me by surprise how unpredictable that was (sarcasm intended).

The poor guy did not realize what an amazing father he had untill he met a man whose father abused his mother and a girl who lost hers to cancer at a young age. Butoops! This realization dawns on him only when his father’s corpse is rotting in a strange woman’s shady hotel.The shady woman’s daughter is equally shady, and Mithila Palkar (portraying Tanya) is being, well, Mithila Palkar. Her character is a slap in the face of feminism. She receives the news of her grandmother’s death, who apparently she is very close to, goes to a party the same night, gets drunk to dust and in the morning, very conveniently forgets the fact that her granny has ceased to exist! When reminded by Avinash, she decides to mourn by drowning her sorrows with vodka again at the venue of a wedding that has just been called off. Moreover, the worst message you can give out through cinema is not practicing ‘safe sex.’ Especially in times like these when the masses are already struggling with the idea. Her character has been called out on not because she bought a pregnancy test, but because she did not exercise ‘precaution’. Living irresponsibly and asking not to be judged for it in the name of feminism is where this movie made a huge blunder. The screenwriter definitely needs to brush up on his terminology.

Irrfan Khan was amazing as usual but his role did not do him justice. He was more of a supporting actor that overpowered the protagonist and provided some comic relief, not because of the trying-too-hard punchlines, but because of his comic timing and dialogue delivery. The cinematography is beautifull and the montages of Ooty’s scenic beauty make your heart flutter.

This movie is going to be a huge breakthrough for Prateek Kuhad, a singer still underrated. His songs offer a soothing, almost transcendental, vibe to the movie and involve you in the mesmerizing journey of life; the lyrics making you question your own choices and forcing you to retrospect.

Our rating – 2/5

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Anuva Rana (Dept. of Philosophy, PU)



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