Super Cassettes Industries Ltd. and Freeway Pictures’ Roy (UA) is the story of a thief and a filmmaker who makes a film on the life of the thief.
Kabir Grewal (Arjun Rampal) is a filmmaker who has been signed by producer Irani (Kaizaad Kotwal) but he just can’t think up a good script. Then, one day, he sees detective D.S. Wadia (Rajit Kapur) talking on television about a thief who stole expensive paintings. Kabir heads to Malaysia to make his film, without much of a story. In Malaysia, he meets filmmaker Ayesha Amir (Jacqueline Fernandez) who tells him about her encounter with the thief, Roy (Ranbir Kapoor).
Roy had met Ayesha, wooed her, had had an affair with her and one day disappeared after stealing a painting from her house. That painting was one-half of a painting which was already in the possession of the man (Barun Chanda) Roy worked for and he (Roy) had taken it upon himself to complete the painting by stealing the other half.
Ayesha, who has a brief affair with Casanova Kabir, tells him her entire story about her encounter with Roy, little knowing that Kabir was shooting her story on celluloid as his new film. Then, one day, Ayesha reads the script of Kabir’s under-production film and realises that Kabir has stolen her story. She wraps up her own shooting and returns home and completely disconnects from Kabir. Here, Kabir realises that he is deeply in love with her. He doesn’t even know the reason for Ayesha walking out of his life. He abandons his film project mid-way because Ayesha, who is the de facto writer of the film, has gone away without telling him the ending. Kabir can’t think of how to take his movie forward.
Kabir tries to establish contact with Ayesha but to no avail. He gets lucky when he finally meets her at a film festival and awards function for which he is a jury member and where her film, Malacca Diaries, wins her a prize. That is where Ayesha tells Kabir to stop trying to get her back into his life because she did not approve of him stealing her story.
Here, Roy also realises, he is madly in love with Ayesha. Meanwhile, Kabir and Roy meet and become friends.
Roy soon has a change of heart and he now wants both the paintings – the one he had stolen from Ayesha’s house and its other half. But his boss has already sold the two paintings to an art dealer (Asif Basra). Does Roy lay his hands on the two paintings? If so, how? And if he does get the paintings, what does he do to them? Is Kabir able to forget Ayesha or does he meet her again? Does Ayesha forgive Kabir? Does Kabir tell Ayesha that he loves her? Does Ayesha also love Kabir? Does Roy meet Ayesha again? Does Ayesha forgive Roy? Does Roy tell Ayesha that he loves her? Does Ayesha also love Roy? Does Ayesha go with Kabir or Roy or none of them?
Vikramjeet Singh has penned a story which is far from engaging or interesting. That it moves at a painfully slow pace and thereby tests the audience’s patience is just one of the many problems. The stories of Ayesha with Roy and of Ayesha with Kabir appear to be happening simultaneously, confusing the audience. Many among the viewers will not be able to comprehend that the time zones of the two stories are different and so are the places where they are unfolding.
Vikramjeet Singh’s screenplay is quite weird. Ayesha is shown to be an idiot who has affairs with two thieves – a thief of paintings and a thief of intellectual property. Kabir Grewal seems to be another idiot who can’t even complete a script, simply because the person whose story he has been stealing walks out on him without completing it. This means, Kabir completely lacks imagination which is why he abandons the project after shooting a good portion of it. Roy’s character is equally weird – there is no explanation given to the viewers about why he does what he does. Probably worse than all of the above is the point that neither the story of Ayesha and Roy nor the story of Ayesha and Kabir appears believable or even appealing enough. All the three characters are so sketchy that the viewers are unable to identify with any of them. Frankly, the feeling the viewer gets while watching the film is that each of the three principal characters is doing nothing and merely indulging in silly and stupid things as far as their romantic stories go. The audience’s sympathy goes to neither of the three characters – it doesn’t go to Kabir because he comes across as a loser; it doesn’t go to Roy because he is a thief without much else revealed about him; and it doesn’t go to Ayesha because she seems to be good at everything including filmmaking, yoga, painting, dancing but stupid enough to not realise that she is being used. Also, Ayesha oscillating between Kabir and Roy will prove to be a sore point with the audience because this hardly makes her appear as a morally right girl. Effectively, the film has two heroes – one is a loser, the other is a thief – and one heroine – who appears morally wrong.
The screenplay also looks one of complete convenience. Ayesha chancing upon Kabir’s script is just one case in point to indicate how very convenient the screenplay is. For, why would a director leave his script so callously for someone to pick up?
If the romance is far from heart-warming, the light moments are very few and even they are feeble. Emotions fail to touch the heart because the audience doesn’t connect with any of the three main characters. The ending is very confusing. Dialogues, penned by Vikramjeet Singh and Hussain Dalal, are extremely routine and commonplace.
Arjun Rampal tries to look sincere and dedicated but his lack of conviction in the script and in his characterisation is all too evident. Ranbir Kapoor is ordinary and he, too, seems to have simply acted for the sake of acting. He lends star value, of course, but the unsubstantive role he portrays is bound to greatly disappoint his fans. That he is not the hero of the drama will only agitate the audience. Jacqueline Fernandez is earnest but to no avail. She looks gorgeous. Shernaz Patel gives her cent per cent to the character she plays – a production head with Kabir Grewal. Anupam Kher has his moments as Kabir’s father. Barun Chanda is effective as Roy’s boss. Asif Basra makes his presence felt in a brief role as an art dealer. Rajit Kapur leaves a mark. Cyrus Broacha is good but his Hindi pronunciations and sense of gender are pathetic. Kaizaad Kotwal and Mandana (as Pia) provide fair support. Others do as required.
Vikramjeet Singh’s direction may be alright as far as the technicalities are concerned but his narrative skills are below the mark. He confuses the audience at several places and is not able to engage them or entertain them. Music (Ankit Tiwari, Meet Bros. Anjjan and Amaal Malik) is the best thing in the film. ‘Sooraj dooba hai’ (by Amaal Malik) is a surefire hit. ‘Tu hai ki nahi’ (by Ankit Tiwari) is also very appealing. All the other songs are also melodious. Lyrics (by Abhendra Kumar Upadhyay, Sandeep Nath and Kumaar) are weighty. Song picturisations (choreography by Ahmed Khan) are good but could’ve been better. Sanjoy Chowdhury’s background music seems heavily inspired by Hollywood films. It appeals at places. Himman Dhamija’s cinematography is nice. Locations are breathtaking. Sanjay Shekhar Shetty’s action and stunts are functional. Vintee Bansal’s production designing is alright. Dipika Kalra’s editing leaves something to be desired.
On the whole, Roy is a confused film which will confuse the audience more than it would entertain. Despite a hit music score, it will prove to be a flop fare at the box-office.