Student Of The Year is a Dharma Productions venture, directed by Karan Johar himself. The film was much awaited and popular among the youth who is also the target audience of this film.
The story of “SOTY” revolves around a school St. Teresa managed by Dean Yogender Vashisht (Rishi Kapoor), where students are divided into 2 groups- “The Tata” and “The Bata” groups so to say the rich kids who get in on monetary basis and the students who get admission on the basis of their merit and scholarships.
It is a story about a few students – their lives, friendships, relationships, etc. Rohan Nanda (Varun Dhawan) who is the younger son of a leading business tycoon is a rich spoilt brat, he is the stud who all girls die for, captain of the football team, he is a twisted character, too proud of his money and name, believes there is no one who is good enough to compete with him and takes much pride in it. He is dating the “hot-shot” popular rich girl Shanaya Singhania (Alia Bhatt) who loves him a lot but is tired of his flirtatious nature.
Everything was going as it was until a new boy enters- Abhimanyu Singh (Sidharth Malhotra) who is a small town middle class boy who comes to this monstrous school on scholarship. he is an orphan and lives with his uncle and aunt and loves his grandmother the most . He is a highly ambitious boy for whom sky’s the limit. At first he doesn’t get along with Rohan and also gets into a war of words with him but after a small incident the two hit it off and become best of friends. Abhimanyu admires Ashok Nanda who is Rohan’s father. Mr. Nanda disapproves of his son and thinks he is good for nothing as he doesn’t want to join the business and wants to pursuit music instead but is in awe of Abhimanyu for his ambition and for Abhimanyu’s admiration towards him. They all go to Thailand for Rohan’s brother’s wedding and there Abhimanyu and Shanaya come closer as friends thanks to their mission of getting Rohan back on track and stop his flirting which is even successful but leaves Abhimanyu developing feelings for Shanaya.
Dean Vashisht announces that the Student Of The Year Competition is open where students will be judged on over all skills of IQ Dance talent and Sports. Abhimanyu loses his grandmother and is heartbroken when Shanaya comforts him and realizes that she too may have feelings for him. The Student of The Year competition begins. Who will win the cup and who will win Shanaya’s heart, will the competition create a divide between the two friends?
SOTY is a story of 2 best friends and their journey. Their journey through life, what love does to them, how the competition defines and redefines their friendship. It is a story which the youth will relate to- friendship, love, ambition, competition, parental pressures; Student Of The Year has it all! It’s a very “GOOD LOOKING” movie, the visuals are fantastic, filled with peppy songs and beautiful costumes. It gives the industry 3 new faces and all 3 are great in their first film. The first half is fantastic with loads of laughter and fun moments but second half is comparatively weak.
Varun Dhawan as Rohan makes his debut in Bollywood. He is fantastic as the Good Looking school stud, rich boy with the “swag” and the “killer attitude” but a “softie” and generous person by heart. His timing and dialogue delivery is extremely good and in a few scenes he is fantastic. He is very camera friendly and is a delight to watch on screen. He stands out in the film and proves that he is here to stay.
Sidharth Malhotra as Abhimanyu does a good job as the over ambitious small town boy who wants to achieve everything. He is a self made boy and is proud about himself. He is like the conventional hindi film hero-life without parents, ambition and struggle. he does well but tends to be weak in a few scenes.
Alia Bhatt as Shanaya is pretty, she’s the girl all boys on the campus desire, she loves her brands and her boyfriend but craves love. She is pretty and sweet with lots of young zest and freshness.
Karan Johar as always has paid a lot of attention to the look of the film, from beautiful foreign-looking locations to the look of the characters- fabulous costumes and accessories and sports cars,etc. this is the first time he is working with new comers and does fairly well in directing new talent, though there are a few flaws in the movie especially in the second half few scenes are weak and scripting seems loose.
The dialogues are exceptionally good. The music by Vishal-Shekhar is phenomenal with lots of groovy numbers. It is a complete album with songs for every occasion. The tunes and lyrics of all songs are fantastic and makes you want to hear the album over and over again.
All in all SOTY is your sweet entertainer for the weekend and will connect with the youth though it may not be appreciated by the elder generations. Its a good looking movie with a very real concept.
Sidharth Malhotra – Abhimanyu Singh
Varun Dhawan – Rohan Nanda
Alia Bhatt – Shanaya Singhania
Rishi Kapoor – Dean Yogendra Vasisht
Kayoze Irani – Sudo
Manasi Rachh – Shruti
Sahil Anand – Jeet
Ronit Roy – Sports Coach
Ram Kapoor – Mr. Nanda
Sana Saeed – Tanya
Farida Jalal – Abhimanyu’s Grandmother
Sushma Seth – Dean Yogendra Vasisht’s Mother
Akshay Anand – Abhimanyu’s Paternal Uncle