Movie Review (2014)
Film: “Shaadi Ke Side Effects”
Cast: Farhan Akhtar, Vidya Balan, Vir Das, Ram Kapoor, Purab Kohli
Director: Saket Chaudhary

Rating:

Do marriages really have side effects? A lot of people are of the opinion that there are no side effects, as long as you keep love and trust in the relationship intact.

After attempting the charming and likeable PYAAR KE SIDE/EFFECTS [2006], which redefined love and romance between a young couple, director Saket Chaudhary attempts to focus on the relationship between a married couple in his new outing SHAADI KE SIDE/EFFECTS. Borrowing vignettes from real-life situations, SHAADI KE SIDE/EFFECTS -- much like his earlier attempt -- has an amusing and a spankingly new vibe to it. Add to it the sparkling on-screen chemistry between Farhan Akhtar and Vidya Balan and presto! A delectable outing is ready to be served.

Firstly, the premise. Sid [Farhan Akhtar] and Trisha [Vidya Balan] come to life in the sequel, now as husband and wife. Everything is fine till Trisha and Sid become proud parents. Trisha decides to give up her job, concentrating on the new-born, while Sid tries hard to balance his personal and professional life. When he realizes he can't cope up as an ideal husband, he decides to take tips from Trisha's brother-in-law [Ram Kapoor]...

SHAADI KE SIDE/EFFECTS is more about rediscovering your partner, post marriage. Given the nature of the subject, there looms the risk of the film veering into a serious zone, but Saket makes sure he peppers the plot with humor and amusing episodes, so much so that you never stop smiling even when the on-screen couple have their share of problems or get into a spat over trivial issues. The fact that Saket borrows from real-life instances makes it relatable and identifiable. The connect is tremendous, with the spectator often drawing parallels with his/her life.

Saket's script is no slave to any reference material and you absorb the goings-on like a sponge, without complaining. In fact, the flick offers ample 'tricks' to keep a relationship going in the present times, when ambition and stress can drive a wedge between partners. The first half is simply fantastic, loaded with humorous situations and witty, tongue-in-cheek dialogue, but the post-interval portions get dramatic, while a few episodes do seem a bit elongated. Case in point is the Vir Das track, which, though funny, could've been condensed for a better impact. Ditto for the penultimate portions, which seem stretched.

A rom-com essentially, Saket handles the light moments as well as the dramatic ones with dexterity. The soundtrack [Pritam] is melodious, with the composer belting out a few hummable tracks, especially 'Atyachaari' and the track that appears during the end credits.

The casting is distinguished and together, Farhan and Vidya get their characters spot-on. After delivering a bravura performance in BHAAG MILKHA BHAAG, Farhan reinvents himself yet again, impressing you with an absolutely natural act. The complex part -- a confused husband/new dad -- could've boomeranged had the actor not handled it with subtlety, but Farhan makes sure he doesn't go overboard at all. Post ZINDAGI NA MILEGI DOBARA, BHAAG MILKHA BHAAG and now SHAADI KE SIDE/EFFECTS, Farhan has evolved into one of the finest actors of his generation. Vidya impresses a great deal, having us in splits with her over-protective mom act. Having a natural flair for comedy, which was evident in her last release GHANCHAKKAR, Vidya glides into her part beautifully. At the same time, there are moments that make you realize her potential as an actress as she handles the dramatic sequences with gusto.

The supporting cast is most appropriate. Ram Kapoor is in top form. Watch out for the sequence towards the closing stages of the film. Vir Das is wonderful and makes the proceedings enjoyable towards the second half. Ila Arun is first-rate. Purab Kohli, Gautami Kapoor and Rati Agnihotri are perfect in their respective characters.

On the whole, SHAADI KE SIDE/EFFECTS is a delicious take on contemporary relationships. This one's relatable, heart-warming, amusing and thoroughly enjoyable!