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New York (2009) - Plot Summary Poster

(2009)

Plot

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Summaries

  • NEW YORK is a contemporary story of friendship set against the larger than life backdrop of a city often described as the centre of the world. Omar (Neil Nitin Mukesh) has gone abroad for the first time in his life and soon enough he begins to see and love America through the eyes of his American friends - Sam (John Abraham) and Maya (Katrina Kaif). It is the story of these three friends discovering a new world together. But one day the world around them changed - For most of us, larger events in the world are just headlines in the newspapers but these events can change our lives - forever. New York is one such story of 3 young friends whose beautiful lives are turned upside down by the larger event of 9/11 beyond their control. At this point enters Agent Roshan (Irrfan), an FBI undercover agent who sets the ball rolling for a series of tumultuous events that turn the lives of these friends into a dangerous and thrilling roller coaster ride. Innocence is lost forever.

  • It's story about three students studying at the New York State University whose lives are changed by 9/11 and its aftermath.


Spoilers

The synopsis below may give away important plot points.

Synopsis

  • New York begins in the United States in 2008, with the arrest by the FBI of Omar Aijaz (Neil Nitin Mukesh) after guns were found in the trunk of a taxi cab he owned. Omar, a young Muslim man originally from Delhi, is then taken into custody and interrogated by FBI Agent Roshan (Irrfan Khan) (also a Muslim man originally from South Asia who has been living in the United States for twenty years). Omar then discovers that he was set up by the FBI in order to force him to spy on a former college friend, Samir Sheikh (John Abraham), whom he hasn't seen in seven years and who the FBI believes is a terrorist. In the process, Omar discovers that Sam has married Maya (Katrina Kaif) (whom Omar had a crush on in university and another friend) and finds out that Samir and Maya have a young son, Danyal (Aidan Wagner).

    Roshan orders Omar to tell him everything he knows about Samir. The film then flashes back to September 1999, when Omar begins his studies at (the fictional) New York State University. He is befriended by his international student counselor Maya and learns that though she was born and raised in New York, she is fluent in Hindi because of her mother's interest in Bollywood films. Omar also meets Sam, another Indian American who is also Muslim and fluent in Hindi due to the fact that his father is a professor of Indian studies. Over the next two years, all three become inseparable friends and gradually Omar falls in love with Maya. When Omar realises that she loves Sam, however, he distances himself from them both. Their carefree days finally end with the onset of 9/11.

    After finishing his story, Omar agrees to help Roshan (rather reluctantly), if only to prove that both he and Sam are innocent. He reunites with Maya and Sam and stays in their house, all the while spying for the FBI. Omar learns that Maya is a civil rights activist who is helping one of Sam's employees, Zilgai (Nawazuddin Siddiqui) overcome his experience as a former 9/11 detainee. Zilgai was eventually released due to lack of evidence and has been having difficulty adjusting back to "normal" life.

    As time progresses, Omar feels satisfied that he can find nothing to warrant the FBI's suspicions and is ready to leave when a series of events forces him to reconsider. In the process, Omar learns from Sam that ten days after 9/11, Sam was arrested and detained for a period of nine months as a suspected terrorist, a charge which everyone, including the FBI and Roshan, now agree was incorrect. Though he was eventually released due to lack of evidence, the impact of being detained and tortured permanently changed Sam in ways which are difficult for those surrounding him to understand, leaving him with feelings of deep resentment towards the FBI. Omar thus finds that Sam ultimately resorted to plans for terrorism as a means of revenge.

    In addition, Maya is unable to help Zilgai resolve the trauma of being a detainee. After a routine traffic stop escalates and an NYPD police officer gives Maya a very rough full-body search, Zilgai becomes agitated. He drops Maya at her home and eventually kills the police officer the same night. After being declared a fugitive, Zilgai leads the police on a long chase ultimately ending in his suicide.

    The climax of the film rests upon the attempts of Maya, Omar, and Roshan to prevent Sam from committing an act of terrorism by telling him that if he perpetuates towards terrorism, others will suffer as he has. Finally convinced, Sam surrenders and aborts his attempt to bomb the FBI building. However, the moment he drops his cell-phone (which was originally intended as a detonator for the bomb) he is shot and killed by FBI snipers. The cell phone falls benign to the ground without activating anything. Maya, who was running toward Sam, is also killed by stray gunfire and Omar, bereft of speech, breaks down. He is later comforted by Roshan who tells him: "Jo ho gaya so ho gaya" (what has happened, has happened). Six months after these events, Omar has adopted Danyal, and Roshan has received a commendation for killing Sam. They confront and reconcile each other. The film ends with all three of them going out for pasta and a side note describing the after effects of 9/11.

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