Jab Tak Hai Jaan (JTHJ) puts across the point that true love takes its own sweet time to bear fruition and that the lovers have to hang in there with patience. This point is apt for the movie and the audience too, as it is a long movie spread across three hours which requires a lot of patience from the viewers.
Samar Anand (Shahrukh) is the main protagonist and we are shown two stages of his life. His 20s are spent in London as a struggler doing all kinds of jobs to earn some money. He meets the uptight and pious Meera (Katrina) and she turns out to be the girl of his dreams. Love blossoms between the two but she is a woman who stands by her vows and prayers even if it means putting her love on the back burner.
Later in his 30s, Samar comes across as a daredevil bomb diffusing expert in the Army and he earns the nickname “The man who cannot die” due to his impeccable record at diffusing more than 100 dangerous bombs (These scenes have been borrowed from the Oscar winning “The Hurt Locker”). He encounters Akira Rai (Anushka Sharma), an aspiring documentary film maker who dreams of getting into the Discovery channel in London, through her documentary on Samar’s exploits. She also slowly falls for Samar’s intense charm.
With two beautiful women in his life, does Samar finally find his true love and does he stop flirting with danger in the Army and start living his life with his dream partner? Watch JTHJ to find out.
The movie owes whatever it is, to some stunning work by cinematographer Anil Mehta and A.R. Rahman’s melodious soundtrack. London and Ladakh have been captured in all their pristine beauty and the movie is a colorful treat with brilliant production values. Each frame is picture perfect.
Rahman’s songs are chartbusters already with Challa, Saans, Heer leading the way. His BGM score isn’t extra-ordinary though. Editor Namrata Rao could have made the movie more taut and crisp. Sitting for close to three hours is a task indeed.
Katrina Kaif dances like a dream in the Ishq Shava number and also in the preceding percussions track. She has improved as an actor and is adequate in the emotional scenes as well. Her beauty needs no further elucidation.
Anushka Sharma plays another of her typical chirpy and bubbly characters. Her intro swimsuit scene seemed to be a forced inclusion in the movie. The youngster is a natural and she nails it, be it the serious scenes or the lighter moments. She is in fact the trump card among all the star performers.
Shahrukh Khan is back in home territory playing the intense and charming romantic. He is at ease as expected and endears. His stubble works wonders and makes him look even more charming. The layers of makeup show, though.
Among the support cast, Sarika, Rishi Kapoor, Neetu Singh and Shahrukh’s London friend make a mark in the scenes that they appear in. It is refreshing to see Sarika in particular, after a long hiatus.
The movie also has a lovely end credits tribute to the late Yash Chopra and this sequence makes one emotional thanks to the melodious ‘Jab Tak Hai Jaan’ title track that plays along.
Even though the snail’s pace, the length of the movie and the melodrama count among the movie’s blips, the A-grade performances from the lead cast, the mellifluous music and the stunning locales make the movie watching experience a worthwhile one on the whole.
Verdict: An intense ‘old school’ romance that rides on its timeless music and dreamy visuals