Review: When one wishes to adapt a novel into a full-length feature film, he has his task cut out. Reading a novel with a mediocre story is always more fascinating than watching it on the big screen for the reason that it allows you to unleash your imagination and interpret the characters and situations in a way you would like to. On the other hand, in a film there is policing of thoughts as you see only what the director shows you and the rest depends on how effectively he translates the story into a larger picture. It is here, exactly, where Abhishek Kapoor's Fitoor comes as a disappointment, not only because of the shopworn premise and lackadaisical screenplay which leave no room to emotionally invest in any of the characters, but also because clearly this isn't his cup of tea. No doubt, he offers an authentic portrayal of Kashmir and the mood of the film is set throughout thanks to the lucid photography and Kapoor's eye for detail, but it plods along tediously without finding its feet and it's never a good sign when you keep looking at the time waiting for the film to just finish.
The problem with period films nowadays is that in the process of beautifying the film, the makers tend to obviate the need for a good story. Frankly speaking, few have been able to establish a period drama as convincingly as Vikramaditya Motwane's Lootera, a masterpiece which skilfully and seamlessly combined art and writing. After his debut film Aryan, director Abhishek Kapoor grew with every film of his, ultimately touching the peak with the terrific Kai Po Che (which was also an adaptation of Chetan Bhagat's Three Mistakes of My Life). With Fitoor, things have pretty much taken a downturn for him. If you still manage to survive the excruciatingly slow first half, it is only because of Amit Trivedi's excellent soundtrack which captures the essence of the film so perfectly that you wish his evocative tunes played on and on without having to go through (or rather sleep through) the soulless, over-cooked dialogues between its characters.
It doesn't help either that none of the performances are truly affecting. Aditya Roy Kapoor brings a distinct charm to his character and Katrina Kaif dazzles in every outfit of hers, but sadly none of that makes us even remotely root for them. And when the usually dependable Tabu, too, has a tough time presenting herself on screen, you know there's something definitely wrong with the film.
I'm going with 2/5 for Fitoor. The fact that 55 lakh rupees were spent on Katrina Kaif's red hair goes to show how much Fitoor went into stylising the film than actually making it a better one.