There is speculation that the new Yash Chopra romance, recently revealed to be titled Jab Tak Hai Jaan, is “loosely” based on End of the Affair. And that film, as anyone knows, is right on top of the pile when it comes to the "doomed romance" category.
Now the intensely brooding Ralph Fiennes combined with the fragility of Julianne Moore makes for a double pack of Kleenex movie.
But we are dealing with Chopra the Elder here – no mean hand in the doomed romance area. What can we expect from the Yashified End Of the Affair? Here are my confident predictions.
• SRK is a dashing lieutenant who is quick with the flowery poetry, as one is. Deftly rhyming zindagi with bandagi, not to mention jafa and wafa, he fights off warring hordes of a nameless “dushman."
• There will of course be the fiery and tempestuous meeting with "the one," the mandatory romantic song or songs in Switzerland, followed by reckless romantic declarations.
• Then there's our dashing hero’s courage on the frontline that results in the hero having his near death experience. Since the original was set against WW II, it would be a bit difficult to match that, but I am sure Chopra the Elder will manage.
• This is then followed by the heroine’s pact with the Almighty – let him live and I will walk away from him forever.
• I would also expect clever subterfuge at this point – the heroine cunningly tries the completely original “I will make Rahul think I am cheating on him” gag. Always a good bet, since the hero, whose brain has turned into bubble gum after singing those songs, is very easily convinced that his girlfriend (a girl who has invested considerably in Bollywood dance lessons for his sake) is two-timing him. Smiling bravely through her tears etc, she converts his everlasting pyaar into soul torturing nafrat.
• Separation is followed by the anxiety that goes with it . Maudlin song opportunities with at least 2 lines sung by Yash’s muse –Lata Didi.
• Katrina (Pooja/Kiran) gets married to an insipid sap whose role is to sacrifice his love in the end to the hero. Most likely SRK (Yes, yes, Rahul or Raj- why buck a trend?) will marry a suitably long-suffering Anushka Sharma (shades of Kabhi Kabhie anyone?).
• Cut to 10 years later. Since SRK is sick of London by now, my guess is the crew shifts to maybe Scotland. So an accidental meeting with the heroine, that familiar refrain and boom, we are back in business.
• Bring out the big guns – swelling music, tears, refrain, declarations of love, kick insipid sap in the face and…
• …the Almighty weighs in on the situation. Aforementioned pact must be honoured. Hence heroine is struck down with an illness that leaves her suitably pale and wan and swiftly dispatches her (but not before that last song).
• However, there must be a child lurking somewhere… and the story continues.
• Movie ends on a Love Never Dies motif…?
And there you have it - another beautiful, heartwarming Yash Chopra romance.