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Bhatinda-based school-going Arjun wants to follow in his much-maligned grand-father's footsteps and attain fame at the Wembley Stadium much to the chagrin of his father. After the latter's passing, he re-locates to live in Britain with his paternal uncle, and when admonished about his career, runs away. Years later Arjun will attempt to gain fame along with two associates, Zoheb and Wasim, and his sweetheart, Priya. He returns to Bhatinda and asks his childhood slacker and trouble-maker friend, Manjeet Khosla, to also join his band - a decision that will not only cost him his popularity, his career and dreams, but also his love.Written by
London Dreams is all about the aspiration, dreams, achievement and a few people who pursue the same. The story revolves around passion, music, friendship, aggression and the best part is it's closeness to reality with out eroding cinematic pleasure Arjun's (Ajay Devgan) dream was to perform in Wembley Stadium, London where his grand father failed to perform. He was always struck with obstructions while moving ahead with his ambition. But, music was his life and hence achieving his dream is equivalent to fight for his life. What ever be the obstacles – be it bonds of relation or anything remained only as obstacles for him. His life revolves around achievement of his dream and he parked all other priorities till when he achieved his end. Passion transforming to obsession! Manjit (Salman) was not clear about his goal in life but he always exhibited unstinted affection towards his friend. He could sing but he was happy to perform "Band Party" in Bhatinda. He is loud; happy go lucky, naïve and innocent – the typical Punjabi Villager.
Arjun and Manjit complimented each other during childhood and destiny brought Arjun to London where he struggled to achieve his dream. His dream gave shape to the Band "London Dreams" – Arjun being the lead vocal, composer and lyricist got ample support from Priya (Asin) the Iyer girl who was forced to learn Bhart Natyam but wanted to perform Western Dance and Pakistani instrument players Zoheb and Wasim (Ran Vijay Singh and Aditya Kapoor).
Arjun was so calculative in his move and could vouch Manjitto be a part of his dream which he obliged gracefully. Together they started their journey to fulfill the dream! All of them complimented each other in the best manner – they crossed each and every milestone! Wembley is not a distant dream ---- But when you are about to achieve your dream, you will be exposed with new challenges! Life is all about sailing through that rough terrain! Rarely people reach the shore and everything comes with a price! The journey from dream to reality is all about the plot of London Dreams.
As a writer Vipul Amrit Shah created a niche where in he present poignant stories with maudlin appeal. RHTDM was not a trend setter but still provided some insight towards this craft. As a Director also, he handled similar topics in Namastey London and Waqt. Of course, he is handling a theme with music as the main theme with some lead star cast and direction becomes a precarious balancing act. Vipul did achieve this end to a great extent! The passion and aggression of Arjun, the bucolic charm of Manjit, transition of frames from rustic Punjab to London, ensemble earthy humor and emotional upsurge – as per Bollywood standards, he did an excellent job.
Casting is quite important in Indian Market. Long back, Aamir and Shahrukh was about to be casted for this project and finally we have Salman and Ajay! Salman always comes up with surprises! He disappoints to the core with a movie and will ensure a dramatic return. After promising "Wanted", due to family obligations he surprised us with MAMK! Again, he came back as an excellent charmer. It won't be an exaggeration if I say that he eclipsed rest of the star cast! Having Ajay Devgan, one of the finest actors in Bollywood, achieving this end is not an easy task. True, there are no flaws with Ajay but alas, he did similar roles (Not a musician) before. Also, somehow I find it a bit odd that Ajay performing as a rock star. Might be the character of Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam still lingers. But all in all, we should appreciate Ajay to accept a role like this that might bag audience sympathy to the other character. Rest of the cast including Asin, Om Puri etc. was good in their job with essential and limited screen presence.
There is no better choice that Shankar – Ehsaan – Loy to compose music. It is quite natural to compare songs with that of Rock on (which is not advisable). Music might become popular over repeated hearing but with out any doubt it suits the theme even though not enough to be included as the music that might create euphoria among audience across the globe as depicted in the movie.
Sejal Shah the man behind camera did magic! Especially the starry night in Bhatinda, lighting during the music performance requires excellent hand behind the camera.
Suresh Nair the man behind screen play almost became an expert in handling music related themes (Jhankar Beats, Namastey London). He ensured to eliminate redundancy factor even though I could draw parallel with the central theme of Malayalam Movie "Bharatam".
All in all – as per Bollywood standards, London Dreams is an excellent watch. Element of melodrama towards the end of the movie was slightly larger than life.
All in all – it is a movie with out any malice. You can watch with family and friends.
Salman 10/10 Ajay 8/10 Asin 7/10 Music 9/10 Movie 10/10
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