Aa Ab Laut Chalen
Puja Miri Yajnik
“Aa Ab Laut Chalen” is a Hindi Romantic drama released in 1999, directed by Rishi Kapoor. It was produced by Rajiv Kapoor, Randhir Kapoor and Rishi Kapoor and starred Rajesh Khanna, Akshaye Khanna, Aishwarya Rai and others. The story centres around Rohan (Akshaye Khanna), a dynamic and energetic young man who arrives from India to make his fortune in New York. There are touching conversations between his worried mother (Moushumi Chatterjee) and him, which I thought was a nice, natural touch. Rohan has many adventures, and finds himself making a helpful friend who takes him under his wing. He starts driving a taxi and on one drive meets Pooja (Aishwarya Rai). There is also the wealthy, glamorous Loveleen who he spends time with.
The film is sensitively directed by the legendary Rishi Kapoor. In fact, this is his only directorial venture. He is able to portray the lifestyle of many Indians when they leave their homes and begin setting up a new life in the US. The affections that develop between Rohan and his two friends is very believable. Pooja falls in love with this charming young man, who is thinking of the wealthy Loveleen as a way of moving forward in his life. Her vulnerabilities are very realistic as she has to give up her hopes for Rohan. She takes up a job in the house of a wealthy Indian. Enter Rajesh Khanna.
The film is a very authentic portrayal of the NRI lifestyle at the time. The performances of Akshaye Khanna and Aishwarya Rai are good, and they are able to build their characters. For me this film is more about the environment they face and the lifestyle they lead- for instance there is an interesting party scene in which there is a dandiya based song and dance, which is very well done with lots of emotions going around as two very different girls aim for the same guy. Some viewers may find it a little long in parts, but overall, it is a pleasant family film and worth a watch.
Disclaimer: The above review solely illustrates the views of the writer.