Jagga Jasoos is a brave attempt to capture childhood fantasies and bind them into a musical. The story starts in India and then takes you halfway around the world to Africa.
The protagonist Jagga (Ranbir Kapoor) stammers while speaking, but can convey his thoughts easily when he breaks into a song. His weakness in speaking is made up by his interest in detective stories and his dexterity in solving mysteries that make him popular at school. Katrina plays the role of a reporter who always lands herself in trouble. In an earlier interview with a media network, the director Anurag Basu had said that the stammering of Jagga is inspired from his childhood friend and music director Pritam, who would stammer but could sing very clearly. Katrina’s character Shruti is inspired from the director’s own wife Tani, who, in his words, is a calamity generator.
The first half of the movie is edited very well and slowly but steadily builds up the narrative. Jagga’s 1st detective case is not very convincing but establishes his love for mysteries and adventures. The movie leads from one case to other, with each case titled like the adventures of Tintin. The second half of the movie takes us to Morocco with beautiful sunsets, giraffes and ostriches.
The visuals are stunning and hard work of director of photography Ravi Varman is visible throughout the movie. Some of the scenes in Morocco and Manipur are particularly noteworthy. Every frame of Jagga Jassos has been very well thought of.
Several scenes have been created with good visual but there are few faults like the animated plane shown towards the end carrying our protagonists back home. Some portions really seem to have been done in a hurry and reduce the overall charm of the movie.
The background score and the songs are placed at the right places . Jagga conveys his thoughts through singing, a characterisation that may have been done give the protagonist some hurdles in life and to give the movie a feel of a musical with some two liner songs which mostly are not memorable.The main songs in the movie are not really sung by the character on screen. One would feel that some portions could be edited off songs like ‘Khana Khake’ which, otherwise a very catchy number, feels a little stretched in the movie. The song ‘Galti se mistake’ drew claps and whistles from the audience. Pritam has also created some very beautiful numbers like ‘Mera gaon Jhumri Talaiya’ which is picturised very beautifully, just like it’s counterpart from the 2012 movie Barfi.
In fact, Jagga Jasoos in parts is reminiscent of the 2012 movie Barfi made by the same combination of Anurag Basu, Ranbir Kapoor, Pritam and Ravi Varman. That is when you begin to expect that may be Jagga Jassos is as beautiful a movie. While it does try and both the movies are equally entertaining to watch, somewhere down the line you would feel that Barfi had touched you in many more ways than Jagga is able to.
Jagga Jassos is delightful to watch. It is entertaining in parts, but some portions feel stretched and the story is lost. A few more rounds of editing would have done the movie some good. The script has given the movie some of its best scenes, yet it lacks the power to bind the story. The movie ends with cues to a probable sequel But you end up feeling that this movie could been so much better. Jagga Jasoos is not the regular high drama, brainless dance and song sequence that Bollywood has found a staple in. It is good quality cinema and that is what makes you yearn for more.
Watch Jasoos to bring out the child in you, for the great visuals and the amazing acting by Ranbir Kapoor.
CultureBowl Rating for Jagga Jasoos stands at 3.5.