R Balki is always known for films which aren’t really too extravagant but which are alluring in their own way. Arjun Kapoor and Kareena Kapoor Khan starrer ‘Ki and Ka’ gave off the same vibe and what made it all the more appealing is the gender-related scenario that the film puts forward. With Kapoor and Kapoor Khan sharing screen space for the first time, a list of successes behind Balki and special appearances from Amitabh and Jaya Bachchan, the film was definitely one to watch out for.
When a well-known industrialist’s son Kabir (Kapoor) and career-oriented marketing manager Kia (Kapoor Khan) meet on an airplane, they get talking and eventually become friends. When both realise their aspirations meet – Kabir dreams of being a homemaker and Kia is against marriage because she feels it’ll sabotage her career – marriage seems to be the obvious next step. Will they be able to make it work and will society accept this unconventional relationship?
It has to be said that the concept of this Balki directorial is somewhat fresh. Nowhere previously has this kind of attempt at role-reversal been done in this way in Bollywood. As usual, Balki makes the story watchable and put real situations in the couple’s lives which result in them having to make decisions for the betterment of their relationship and for the roles they both play in their own individual lives which contribute to how they are with one another. Balki is definitely an expert at bringing a story across which isn’t “in your face” but which is endearing even to the cynics. As far an gender roles go, they most definitely fly out the window with this narrative, and there is much detail put into ensuring that the overall concept comes across when borne in the attitudes of the characters and society. The cameos from the Bachchans are a definite “stamp” on those attitudes with their sharing the screen one more time making for a great watch, as expected.
With Kabir and Kia being the main characters of the film and with not much of an ensemble cast to boast of, it has to be said that Kapoor and Kapoor Khan essay their respective roles well. Their chemistry is something that is a pluspoint which sometimes manages to hold the film together. However, it definitely should be said that there are places when the story isn’t quite strong enough to be as realistic as it could’ve been. This is something that lets the performances down a little, as does the physical side of the relationship which is shown. Perhaps the number of kissing and love-making scenes could have been kept to a minimum as there wasn’t any more convincing needed that the couple was indeed in a relationship in the complete form despite the gender roles being varied. This didn’t really contribute to the non-traditional story as maybe makers may have thought it might.
The soundtrack of the film fits in with the story in most places but isn’t so much one that will stick with the audiences for years to come. High Heels is probably the best of the bunch which is inspired by the tunes of UK’s Jaz Dhami and reworked for the film.
‘Ki and Ka’ has been touted as a film which is not meant to convey a social message. Instead what it does is perhaps make the audiences think about what going against conventions could achieve for an Indian society. Kapoor and Kapoor Khan give commendable performances but this film is unfortunately good for a one-time watch and audiences might struggle to keep their attention a second (or third) time round.
BizAsia Showbiz Rating: 3/5