At a time when Bollywood was wrapped in Karan Johar's warm family dramas, Sunny Deol's energetic dialogues and J P Dutta's patriotic film, Indian cinema's Men In White, Abbas-Mustan came up with an ice-breaker film in which Everything Is Planned. Titled Ajnabee, we are sure that kids of the '90s are not ajnabee (stranger) to this coolest yet wacky thriller. The film, a product of Abbas-Mustan's school of filmmaking, marked the acting debut of Bipasha Basu, who starred with Akshay Kumar, Bobby Deol and Kareena Kapoor Khan.
Delivering unadulterated entertainment with every single watch, Ajnabee gained a cult status over the years for adding an additional dimension to Bollywood crime thrillers. Though Ajnabee is far from the best thriller in Indian cinema, it introduced us to Akshay Kumar, the villain, who made the concept of wife-swapping popular with his sinister smile and fingers swinging towards each other. Before solving problems of the society, we saw the superstar lay a perfect yet trippy trap for the innocent 'Lord' Bobby Deol.
On September 21, Ajnabee completed 20 and two decades later, it remains to be one of the most popular films, particularly for hilarious memes. It was deliciously savoured then and now. For those who have committed the sin of not watching Ajnabee, here's a quick recap: Ajnabee revolves around a newly married couple from India- Raj (Bobby) and Priya (Kareena). After marriage, they relocate to Switzerland and become friends with another Indian couple- Vikram (Akshay) and Sonia (Bipasha). In this world of Abbas-Mustan, Everything Is Planned and so is Vikram's plan of wife-swapping. The innocent Raj falls prey to mastermind Vikram's and Sonia's vicious schemes. Priya, the doting wife, is confident that her husband is not guilty. As the mystery unravels, one gets to know that the story, for the audience in the early 2000s, was pretty much advanced (reason, inclusion of net banking in a couple of scenes).
Ajnabee had many jaw-dropping twists and turns that filmmakers before Abbas-Mustan could have never thought of. Adding a dash of oomph, the director duo made the seductive Bipasha play the piano in the most uncommon way ever. Imperfectly delicious, wasn't it? Oh, how can we even miss those bizarre lyrics of catchy songs?
Clearly, for Abbas-Mustan, entertainment was of an utmost priority than logic. They lived up to the expectations of the audience and how. While Ajnabee had an overdramatic story, the lyrics of songs were simply incomprehensible. So bad, so good. How can we even forget the song Kaun main? Haan tum. Bas tum? Offo! By the way, do you remember, Kasam Se Teri Aankhen Aaiya Re Aaiyaa? 20 years of Ajnabee, revisit toh banta hai!
The cruise sequence in which the cast travels from Switzerland to Singapore can never be recreated. One of the reasons is Bipasha and Akshay's chartbuster song Mehbooba Mehbooba. Indeed, it was a well-shot number that is still a hit at parties.
Illogical, bizarre yet delicious, hilarious and cinematic experience, there cannot be another Ajnabee. Agreed?