Homi Adajania's "Cocktail" like the name promises is a heady mix of friendship, love and drama. The fact that Imtiaz Ali and Sajid Ali have written the script ensures that the concoction is strong enough to keep you entertained for the most part. However, the fun is slightly diluted by the pace of the second half.
Raja Sen in his review asks some very pertinent questions:
Why, Bollywood, why? Why this cold shower, this Vicky Christina Bar-Bar-Rona? Why must you promise a potent, heady concoction only to water it down with clichéd club soda, like a sadistic bartender? Why must the most modern aspect of a contemporary film be the clothes the actors wear? Why must characters, in a bid to prove how blasé they are, flip themselves the bird while trying on said clothes? And why -- oh lord why -- can't films be as efficiently short as heroines' skirts nowadays are?
While Taran Adarsh is not too impressed with the film post-interval, he points out the highlights:
First things first! COCKTAIL represents a mélange of three divergent characters: Saif is wacky and outrageous, Deepika is intense and wild and Diana is calm and undemanding. Whip and fluff up the three and the title seems completely justified. Also, the three characters experience a 'cocktail' of emotions: Love, lust, laughter and of course, all that comes with heart-break.
Homi Adajania, who made his directorial debut with BEING CYRUS, attempts a rom-com in COCKTAIL with effortless ease, handling a number of sequences with dexterity. Come to think of it, COCKTAIL is a complex film, which reflects the complexity and intricacies of human relationships. The highpoint of the film is the three sharply defined characters, besides, of course, the styling and visuals.
The premise is quite predictable but the writers manage to pack in enough modern-day relationship complications to make for a different take on love triangles. This film chooses contemporary storytelling making no compensations for conservative Indian sensibilities. While sometimes they manage to steer clear of "traditional Indian" clichés where good Indian girls never steal their best friend's boyfriend or where the married ones always go back to their errant husbands, at others it is as clichéd as it can get.
We have seen quite a few love triangles but is this film any different? Deepika's character has no problems having a relationship with "no strings unattached" but can Bollywood really handle complex relationships?
Rajeev Masand in his review says:
The film attempts to be mature about pre-marital sex and adult relationships, and one scene at a kitchen counter in which Gautam explains their predicament clearly is nicely done, without falling prey to melodrama. But Cocktail slips just as often into cliche...like when 'good girl' Meera acts as if she's tainted by real passion, or when she sacrifices her love for her best friend. It's the script that is to blame here, given that the film suffers from lazy, loopy writing. Everyone is trying too hard -- to be cool, hip, funny or convincing -- and as a result the film gives off the feeling that this generation is completely superficial, with no real emotions.
While most critics felt that Saif either looked too old to do the "serial flirt" part or has done the same act much better before, the other performances were impressive.
Anupama Chopra in her review said:
The writing is enhanced by the performances. The big surprise here is Deepika, who moves beyond her usual statuesque mannequin pose and gets into the skin of the emotionally raw and needy poor little rich girl. This is easily her best performance to date. Saif is an old hand at these sorts of roles but here he really ramps up the charm and even pulls off a scene that has him doing a Tom-Cruise-on-a-couch jump as he wears red lipstick and a negligee. Diana is saddled with the most colourless character but she infuses her role with a quiet poise and holds her own.
This cocktail is full of fizz.
Was this 'Cocktail' heady or did it lack fizz?
You can also connect with me on Twitter.