Review: Student Of The Year
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Cast: Sidharth Malhotra, Varun Dhawan, Alia Bhatt, Rishi Kapoor, Ram Kapoor, Ronit Roy, Farida Jalal
Director: Karan Johar
Indian Express Rating:**
I have a bone to pick with Karan Johar, who invites us once again, to witness a bunch of young students do their thing. Not because this is yet another impossibly swish 'school' which bears little resemblance to the posh-est educational institutions we have in the country : after the seismic shock of that first Riverdale-high-school-clone in 'Kuch Kuch Hota Hai', anything was possible. Not because we are asked to believe that these beautifully-toned, manicured, polished, perfectly-attired creatures are 'students' in their final year of school: a KJo film will faint at the thought of scruffiness, where even a muddy dab on a sweatshirt after a strenuous game of football appears artfully daubed. And so what if they don't look as youthful as they ought, as long as they are good-looking, right?
Nope, none of the above. It's more to do with the fact that the film appears to have to have been cobbled together from several of the director's own films, and from other poor, underdog student acing super-rich, super-brat progenies of wealthy parents. So when you see `sports-scholarship-holder' Abhimanyu Singh (Malhotra) squaring up to bad-boy Rohan Nanda (Dhawan, David's son) and the top-to-toe designer-clad Shanaya Singhania (Bhatt, Mahesh's daughter), you know exactly what you are in for. What you don't expect is that the in-between stuff will have quite such a seen-it-so-what's-new quality.
St Teresa's is the tony, high-nosed school in Dehradun where Abhimanyu, Rohan (cutely called Ro, of course) and Shanaya and their friends are busy preparing to finish school and win the coveted top prize. The 'student of the year' concept is the brainchild of the school's openly gay dean (Rishi) who has the hots of the hearty, buff coach (Roy). This results in several episodes of dean-lusting-after-coach which get old very soon, and everything goes into a loop with best friends learning to cope with competition and winning and losing.
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