Shehzada Review: Kartik Aaryan & Kriti Sanon build an empire on foundation of entertainment & family values


Film: Shehzada
Cast: Kartik Aaryan, Kriti Sanon, Paresh Rawal, Manisha Koirala, Ronit Roy, Rajpal Yadav, Ankur Rathee, Sunny Hinduja
Director: Rohit Dhawan
Rating: 3.5 moons

A prince is often looked up as someone born with a silver spoon in his mouth. But when a prince is born into poverty, the scenario changes drastically. Such a story is explored in Rohit Dhawan’s latest directorial titled Shehzada. The massy entertainer is headlined by Kartik Aaryan, Kriti Sanon with Paresh Rawal, Ronit Roy, Manisha Koirala, Sunny Hinduja and Ankur Rathee in supporting roles. 
Shehzada begins with Valmiki (Paresh Rawal) celebrating the birth of his son. However, things go haywire when the child of Randeep Jindal (Ronit Roy), a wealthy businessman, is stillborn. With the help of a nurse, he sacrifices his son and accepts the prince of Jindals as his child. As destiny had it, the stillborn child breathes. Bantu (Kartik Aaryan), born with a buri kismat as Valmiki says, grows up to become a charming lawyer working under Samara (Kriti Sanon), a feisty, independent lawyer, who becomes the sunshine of his life and adds value to it. Shehzada revolves around Bantu and the journey of discovering his real identity and reuniting with his family. 

Shehzada, as promised, rides high on entertainment. Based on Allu Arjun’s Ala Vaikunthapurramaloo, the film is made with a recipe combining ingredients of humour, romance, family values, drama and action. It has everything that makes a perfect cinematic escapism. Shehzada’s strongest pillar is its commercial quotient. There’s no compromise there. Director Rohit Dhawan senses the pulse of the audience who are signing up for a Kartik Aaryan-Kriti Sanon entertainer. Bringing back the essence of seeti-maaro films prevalent in the 80s and 90s. Despite unnecessary songs that tend to throw you out of the story, the flow of the narrative remains constant and smooth. The journey from Bantu being unaware of his identity to the desi-style revelation is engaging. 
Rohit has adapted Ala Vaikunthapurramaloo in the most engaging and witty way. The one-liners and puns made at nepotism and socio-economical scenarios are bound to leave you in splits. For any film to hold attention, the antagonist has to be at par with the protagonist. Shehzada hits the bull’s-eye. Though the antagonist doesn’t enjoy equal screen space as the hero, it is still balanced. The biggest disappointment in Shehzada is the placement of songs. They are good as standalone tracks but don’t fit perfectly into the setting. The music has a crescendo that goes perfectly with the story and action taking place on the screen. 

Known for his lover-boy image, Kartik kicks the ball out of the park just as smoothly as he bashes goons. His energy elevates Shehzada into becoming a massy commercial potboiler. The actor’s swag is unmatched and it reflects on screen. He carries the film strongly on his shoulders. Paresh Rawal as Valmiki is brilliant. Be it comic timing or a menacing act, he is simply a scene stealer. He’s a master of acting and Shehzada is yet another testament. 
Kriti Sanon is effortless as Samara. She’s confident and matches Kartik’s energy. She adds sunshine to the film like Samara does to Bantu’s life. Ronit Roy is the calm in the storm. He is fantastic as always. Sachin Khedekar is loveable too. Manisha Koirala is limited but does her job well. Rajpal Yadav is fabulous in a special appearance. Ankur Rathee is hilarious and manages to shine. Sunny Hinduja pulls off a menacing act effortlessly. His evil gaze is frightening. One cannot miss his brilliant screen presence. 

Shehzada delivers what it promises – unfiltered entertainment for 2 hours and 25 minutes. Allow the magic of cinema to conquer logic and physics.

PeepingMoon gives Shehzada 3.5 Moons