Kho Gaye Hum Kahan Review: Siddhant, Ananya, Adarsh Deliver A Fitting Year-End Reminder To Rediscover Your Lost Sense Of Purpose

Kho Gaye Hum Kahan Review: Siddhant, Ananya, Adarsh Deliver A Fitting Year-End Reminder To Rediscover Your Lost Sense Of Purpose

Currently streaming on Netflix, the movie is an ideal companion for days when you're contemplating and seeking answers from within

Vijayalakshmi NarayananUpdated: Tuesday, December 26, 2023, 04:05 PM IST
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Director: Arjun Varain Singh

Cast: Siddhant Chaturvedi, Ananya Panday, Adarsh Gourav, Kalki Koechlin, Anya Singh, Rohan Gurbaxani, Vijay Maurya, Divya Jagdale, Suchitra Pillai, Rahul Vohra, Kashyap Kapoor

Where: Streaming now on Netflix

Rating: 4 stars

Within moments of the movie starting, you'll likely sense that first-time director Arjun Varain Singh has been observing you throughout. It's the closest I can get to describing the profoundly personal and intimate experience of watching Kho Gaye Hum Kahan. The latest Netflix offering can be aptly described as a straightforward examination of our perpetual craving for validation, driven by our excessive reliance on social media and its many perils.

Ahana Singh (Ananya Panday), Imaad Ali (Siddhant Chaturvedi), and Neil Pereira (Adarsh Gourav) embody the Gen Z equivalent of Amar, Akbar and Anthony. Ahana, a dynamic executive in a digital agency, finds her self-esteem taking a beating when her boyfriend Rohan (Rohan Gurbaxani) unexpectedly ends their relationship. Neil, an uprising physical trainer, finds himself misled by his influencer client Lala (Anya Singh), who makes him believe that a genuine connection could exist between them. Imaad, an emerging stand-up comedian, harbors a fear of commitment and intimacy. However, he inevitably finds himself drawn towards Simran (Kalki Koechlin), an emotionally intelligent woman with clear priorities. Incapable of facing their truths, the trio paint individual facades both online and among their close circles, unaware of how will it consume them all.

Penned by Singh along with Zoya Akhtar and Reema Kagti, Kho Gaye Hum Kahan efficiently utilizes its 2-hour runtime to make its point without intending to force its messaging upon the audience. From searching for our purpose and value through the multiple times our phones vibrate, to the reflexive urge to check social media the moment we wake up, from adopting alternative identities to express our frustration to how we knowingly or unknowingly perpetuate negative offline behavior, the film packs in a lot without leaving an end untied. The assembled technical team seamlessly aligns with the narrative that the film aims to convey. Tanay Satam's cinematography and Sally White's production design introduces an abundance of colors during Instagram-worthy situations, while also skillfully employing darker and earthier shades to depict everyday realities. Notice how the club that the three friends frequent is called Hideaway. However, the film's greatest strength lies in Yash Sahai's dialogues, complemented by the stand-up pieces written by comedian Sapan Verma. The essence of these dialogues is similar to a comforting hug rather than boring sermons from an overbearing parent. Additionally, the film also slyly pokes fun at itself, even at Netflix. The narrative is further complimented with music by Ankur Tewari, OAFF, Savera, Lothika, Rashmeet Kaur, Yashraj, Karan Kanchan, Saba Azad and Achint Thakkar.

Kho Gaye Hum Kahan though, is strengthened by the impressive performances of its three charming leads. Siddhant allows Imaad to hide his pain behind a mischievous smile and philandering eyes. His performance is so controlled that I couldn't help but be deeply moved when he makes the ultimate revelation about himself in the climax. Ananya captures Ahana's essence in a way that resonates with any woman who, at some juncture in her life, has sought validation through the lenses of someone inconsequential. However, it's Adarsh's portrayal of Neil that hits like a punch in the gut. His struggle to overcome his circumstances and the desperate measures he takes to whitewash his reality will resonate as a stark and uncomfortable truth. Watch out for the moment where he feels seen when an influential personality acknowledges him.

Kho Gaye Hum Kahan comes just in time as a year-end reminder to disconnect from your phones, appreciate what you have, and prioritize friends over followers. The film also serves as a much-needed affirmation for days when you question your place in this world. Include it in your holiday watch list, and as you do so, try your luck in spotting one of our most loved influencers somewhere in the film.

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