Thanks to the hugely successful Student of the Year (2012), the audience already knows the kind of liberties that the makers of the franchise had taken. So, when you walk in to watch Student of the Year 2, you are neither shocked nor surprised by the surreal Dehradun-based Saint Teresa’s College that looks straight off a Hollywood flick, and is the premise of the film’s story. Even the shenanigans that happen on the campus with the super-elite crowd of the have-it-all hardly raise a brow this time around. So, the focus then is entirely on this new batch of students – Tiger Shroff, Tara Sutaria and Ananya Panday and their new teacher, director Punit D Malhotra, who producer Karan Johar has now passed the baton to for this year. And how do they score? Well, read on to find out…
What Student of the Year 2 is all about? Take dollops of Student of the Year and add a slight dash of Jo Jeeta Wohi Sikandar and there you have Student of the Year 2. Rohan (Tiger) the sports champ of Mussoorie-based Pishorilal Chamandas College has only one dream and that is to win his childhood love – Mridula (Tara). So, when she gets an admission to the most elite Saint Teresa College, Rohan too plans to join the college even though it’s easily leagues above what his middle-class family can afford. However, he does succeed in securing an admission through the sports quota.
It’s clear from the start that Mridula aka Mia is clearly embarrassed by Rohan’s middle-class background. Meanwhile, Rohan has a run-in with the college trustee’s bratty daughter Shreya (Ananya) who doesn’t leave any opportunity to run him down. However, on the other hand, he unknowingly befriends her brother Manav Singh Randhawa (Aditya Seal) who is the pride of their college and the reigning ‘Student of the Year’ champion having won the trophy twice in a row.
But this friendship is short-lived as the two soon turn fierce competitors when Manav gets romantically involved with Mia. Heart-broken, Rohan joins back his earlier college, Pishorilal and decides to not only win the Dignity Cup in the upcoming inter-collegiate three-day tournament that will have Kabaddi as the grand finale, but also win the Student of the Year trophy. In this, he is supported by his college team-mates, who literally come in all shapes and sizes.
During this, Shreya too starts developing feelings for Rohan. So, does he reciprocate? And does the underdog and his team succeed in overcoming all odds to win the much-coveted trophies? Well, that is what the film is all about!
Yay: Tiger is by now known for his superb action sequences and killer dance moves. Well, he doesn’t disappoint here either and the director Punit Malhotra exploits Tiger’s talents to the max too. His fans are treated to elaborate dances and his crazy-action moves. He scores a ten on ten there. He still does leave some scope for improvement in the acting department though. Tara is impressive as a debutante.
However, it’s Ananya who steals the show. A complete natural, she does remind you of ex-student Alia Bhatt. The girl carries her attitude on the sleeve, dances like a pro and even impresses in the few emotional scenes. Her chemistry with Tiger will keep you hooked. But it’s Tiger’s equation with Aditya – who proves to be a formidable opponent – that will have you rooting for the most. The cold currents between the two reach superb crescendos. And you see yourself looking forward to these two in a face-off, as much as you wait for Ananya share cute moments with Tiger.
The competitions between Aditya and Tiger are highly engaging, especially the Kabaddi matches. The supporting cast does a good job, especially Tiger’s college gang, the Pishoris, including Abhishek Bajaj, as well as coach Kuljeet (Manoj Pahwa) and principal (Ayesha Raza). Sameer Soni, Rajesh Kumar, Manasi Joshi Roy, Chetan Pandit and Gul Panag also do a good job in their brief roles.
The special appearance by Will Smith will have you cheering, as will Alia Bhatt’s song. The film’s characters are well-etched and we especially like the backstory of Ananya’s character. While the film is predictable all through, the way the director has handled the story keeps you engrossed. The music also keeps you engaged. The grandiosity is not played up as much and that’s a relief really. The nail-biting finish, though expected keeps you on the edge-of-the-seat.
Nay: There are many shortcuts and jumps that don’t do justice to the storyline. Like what made Tara change her mind about Tiger mid-way of the film is not explained. Ananya’s sudden turn-over too is not well-played out. Everything seems to have a convenient ending and the struggles seem too easy after a point. The predictability is the dampener. Also barring a few dialogues in the second half, none of them really make an impact. The stereotyping of characters is something the makers need to grow out of.
CineBlitz Verdict: The movie is a fun watch for sure. Entertaining and engrossing, the film has enough light moments to keep you smiling. It’s a light-hearted popcorn film that you wouldn’t mind watching with your family. Overall, we’d say, the students pass with flying colours and it’s a thumbs-up from us.