Much to my resentment, I had to download and watch Dear Zindagi. I wouldn’t even try to review the film because watching a pirated version on a 13 inch computer screen could not have done it any justice at all. Through blurry images and unclear acoustics I could make out the brilliant performance Alia Bhatt was delivering and the cool charisma that Shah Rukh Khan –Jehangir Khan in the film – brought to screen. I could also see that Kunal Kapoor looked very hot as the fiery Raghuvendra. And of course, the emotional dilemma of being a disoriented young girl with commitment issues stemming from a dysfunctional childhood did come across effectively. What planted a big, warm smile however, was Ali Zafar.
Here’s what you need to know about Ali Zafar’s role in Dear Zindagi…
1. Ali makes an entry after the interval and is one of the three men in Kaira’s life. His entry would undoubtedly have let off whistles and cheers in the cinema, had the film released here.
2. He’s a natural because Rumi, his character, is as close to Ali Zafar as a character can get. He’s a Goan singer, a free and Bohemian spirit who sings by the beach to serenade the waves and the tourists gathered around rugged bonfires. He loves the attention he gets and is obsessive about his music while being a bit of a flirt and charmer. Yep, sounds just like Ali Zafar.
3. He DOES kiss Alia Bhatt in the film – that is what flirty, charming characters do, after all. But whether it’s a kiss ala Emran Hashmi or a peck of pucker is what you’ll have to watch and find out.
4. He is part of the furniture in Kaira’s life, Kaira being Alia Bhatt. By part of the furniture I mean ‘chair’ to be exact. Kaira is advised, by her therapist, that it’s only natural to sit in several chairs before deciding which one suits her best. Chairs being metaphors for men, Rumi – therefore – is part of the furniture.
5. I could have sworn that Ali Zafar had sung ‘Tu Hi Hai’ himself, even though the credits stated otherwise and listed Arijit Singh on playback. It turns out that I was right. Ali did sing his own songs in the film and he was replaced by Singh on the CD, probably due to political reasons.