Kal Ho Na Ho
Director: Nikhil Advani; Screenplay: Karan Johar; Music Director: Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy
The film, set in New York City, encompasses the lives of Naina (Preity Zinta), Rohit (Saif Ali Khan) and Aman (Shahrukh Khan); whereby, representing an ode to the celebration of life. Life is rather cold and melancholic for Naina, as a result of her father’s suicide, and she’s reserved to an introverted lifestyle dealing with her family’s needs. In addition to the constant quarrels spawned by her half-Punjabi, half-Catholic household, she looks after two younger siblings and helps her mother (Jaya Bachchan) manage their financial troubles. Upon Aman’s arrival in their neighbourhood, where his vibrant and jovial personality induces the community candour, the family and Naina’s fortunes take a turn. Through certain platonic moments, both begin to fall in love with each other; however, the reality of his incurable heart disease leads him to create a series of strategic efforts to bring Rohit and her closer. Though, the movie ends with his eventual demise, his plan to make Naina happy is successful. The film is a prime example of Bollywood’s Romantic-Drama genre.
The lauded trio of Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy, Kal Ho Na Ho’s music directors, provided a diminutive soundtrack (by Indian film standards) of only six songs – the last of which is an extended instrumental that repeats the title track’s melody. As is typical of the aforementioned group’s portfolio, the songs comprise of layered instruments (and rhythms) rooted from Indian as well as Western sources. Similarly, the album in its entirety represents a diverse set of songs that range from peppy disco tunes, to those that aim to evoke emotion. The musical arrangement is a consistent theme in the tracks, as they often begin with a stripped down (not many layers) affair that plays out the chorus’s melody. The film’s first song (‘Kal Ho Na Ho’, title track) is not only rehashed in a sad version later, but its central...
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