The name Ki & Ka of the film is derived from LadKA and LadKI. The film tells a very relevant and thought provoking story in the most awkward manner conceivable. Yes! There were a few scenes which were really cringe worthy but sans that, I have to admit that the film had its heart in the right place. There were some major issues with the narrative and I will gradually arrive at those points. But what cannot be denied is the spirited attempt that this film takes at pointing a finger or two at the gender bias in this nation and the subjugation that comes with it. The film earnestly holds aloft all the hypocrisies and narrow mindedness that we have learned to accept as “destiny of women” for so long and that happens to be the biggest plus about this film.
The story revolves around Kabir (Arjun Kapoor) and Kia (Kareena Kappor Khan). While Kabir is a son of a multi-millionaire and is an IIM-B topper, Kia is a hotshot Marketing Manager at a top brand. They meet during a flight and their acquaintance quickly turns in a short but quirky romance which results in a marriage. Kia believes that Kabir is the perfect man for her as he insists on being a house husband instead of having a high flying career and thus avoid all the issues that comes with the man being a man and the woman having to put up with his way of life. Here Kabir decides to take up the household chores while his wife pursues her dreams. The problem starts when the wife also starts depicting the same traits that the men are refuted for. What happens next forms the crux of the narrative.
The film’s narrative is breezy. It does hold on to your attention till the very end and you hope at every nook and corner that something substantial will happen. There are in fact three jolts in their relation but unfortunately none of the three will make you nervous. The biggest problem with the story is that post the marriage it stagnates. There isn’t much happening and whatever issues crop up are easily negated. This makes a “daily soap” out of the film and sans an affecting climax and any major hula baloo it disappoints you in the end where you think that you sat through a two hour long lecture on gender equality without even being entertained. Even though the narrative is interesting and it holds your attention, it never really entertains you. It’s like a commentary on the life of two individuals essayed out without much of a fuss.
The film does have its share of cringe worthy moments. I hated the part involving the Mangal Sutra. That was totally unnecessary and un-called-for. Every time Kia breaks out on Kabir, she abuses him with such ferocity and hatred that you are forced to think were her heart lies. That makes a real dick out of her character and makes her less likeable. The fact that Kabir takes it all lying down is even more atrocious. We know how well women met out swift justice for abuse these days. They are no longer the ones to take it lying down and in that era such an interpretation of women in guise of a man was not exactly likeable. However the film does well to point out the very fact that it’s not about the man or woman but about the fact that who earns and how he/she wants to be at the centre of the limelight. That’s exactly what’s wrong with every marriage that comes under fire for the said reason. A truly great point raised.
Arjun is as good as he can be. However in the emotional sequences he feels very fake. He is at home when he is allowed to play the suave dude and woo “Ki”. Kareena Kapoor Khan suffers not so much for her acting as for the way her character is written. “Ki” in this film is not meant to be too likeable towards the end and in achieving that she is supremely successful. Rajit Kapur is Kabir’s father. He is great and everytime he comes on screen I just wished that his act would go on and on. But he has a smallish role. Swaroop Sampat plays Kia’s mother. She is equally charming. She is not only integral to the film but also works as the beacon that shows Kia the right way to go. Loved her act.
Overall, Ki & Ka is a relevant film which was handled poorly. It needed some more shocks and twists and turns. It’s too plain and simpleton to make an impact. Even though it could be what you call very close to reality but it does let you down on the entertainment quotient quite a bit. That’s also the reason why it might not be taken seriously. Also the film is unnecessarily awkward at many junctures that it could have easily avoided. A good opportunity missed.