To appreciate AK vs AK you have to be at least a decade old fan of Bollywood in the first place. Not to say that this film follows the template of any Bollywood movie ever. In fact it does just the opposite. It bends rules, crosses boundaries and blurs the line between reel and real.
The film starts off with the script vs star debate and finds its representation in a surprisingly apt actor-director duo. Anil and Anurag, united by initials and divided by opinions stand for two contrasting movie cultures and distinct periods of cinema( the pre and post twitter era). It goes on to make a commentary on the idea of stardom, the downside of fame, the colloquial understanding of ‘art’ vs ‘commercial’ cinema and addresses ever popular ‘nepotism’. All this done with sarcasm and satire. It is a troll by the industry, on the industry.
Everyone is playing an exaggerated versions of themselves. Constantly throwing digs at each other’s age, popularity, failures, etc. Their attacks are so personal and real, it is hard to believe that this is being filmed. The constant dizziness of the handheld camera is there to remind you that all this is a film inside a film.
Just when you think there is nothing new to say about Anil Kapoor’s acting prowess, here he is outdoing himself. You see how the character and the actor are up for anything you throw at them, just for the love and thrill of cinema. Kudos to Anurag Kashyap for his natural & brilliant screen presence despite standing next to a ball of energy. Special mention to Harshvardhan Kapoor who appears in a tiny but attention stealing performance.
There is only one person I can imagine to dare such a freaking experiment (and who is not already in the movie) and that has to be VIkramaditya Motwane.
AK vs AK acknowledges the absurdity of cinema with self – awareness and also stirs up the conscience of an audience that is unaware of its own mad fandom.
With all its layered nuances and subtle plays, it is fairly tight script that keeps you intrigued till the end.
Like it or hate it, but finding two AK’s who are diametrically opposite to their skin in cinema and bringing them together in a such a free-spirited concept in itself is worthy of a watch.
Going with 4/5 cutting for this one.