My rating – 3/5
2 States is a film that is stretched too long but still mostly entertaining in its own way.
The topic of ‘cultural diversity’ in India is kind of exotic to read in our history books but when two such culturally diverse families try to get along together for their children’s marriage sake – the outcome is so interesting (and so non-exotic) that one can write a book on it and then even make a film out of it.
No doubt the basic concept is amusingly predictable but the main USP of the film 2 states is its fresh lead-casting duo – Arjun Kapoor (Krish Malhotra – the Punjabi munda) and Alia Bhatt (Ananya Swaminathan – the Tamil chori).
Yes, both the actors have done a good job, especially Alia who being out of her comfort zone (as she plays the Tamil girl) still manages to give a very natural performance.
2 States is adopted from Chetan Bhagat’s autobiographical bestseller novel (of the same name) … … produced by Karan Johar and Sajid Nadiadwala … … powered by the music of Shankar Ehsaan Loy … … and of course beautifully shot by Binod Pradhan.
First time director Abhishek Varman has done a great job, he has kept it simple yet entertaining.
The first half of 2 States when Arjun and Alia meet up and fall for each other is very well shot – their onscreen chemistry is so crisp and fresh. They are projected as the young and courageous generation who kisses and have pre-marital sex with much ease – the ultimate romantic lovers who keep telling each other ‘I love you’. The anticipation of a perfect rom-com builds up.
But then the stereotype, over-the-top traditional parents join the party or rather spoil the party.
In one hand we have the inevitably caricatured Tamil parents (Revathy and Shivkumar) who doesn’t smile, doesn’t like furniture but only have an affinity for Carnatic music, coffee and Kanjeevaram.
On the other hand the loud Punjabi family who unapologetically supports the custom of taking dowry – the protective mom (Amrita Singh) who at times gets unnecessarily rude with her in-laws and of-course the drunk, ill-tempered father (who else but Ronit Roy) who doesn’t get along with anybody, especially with his son.
Though both the families are presented as educated and of a certain social class their illogical cultural barriers often seemed inappropriate and forceful. In the twenty-first century one should stretch the envelop of generation gap wisely to make it believable.
(I feel in the film ‘Vicky Donor’ such culture clash was shown in a more rational way but again the focus of that film was completely different from this one.)
Overall 2 States is a fun film to watch.
If you are a fan of either Arjun Kapoor or Alia Bhatt surely go for it. If not then also no harm in experiencing a pure Indian love story.