Jab Imtiaz Ali Should Have Killed Sejal

Pop Culture

Jab Imtiaz Ali Should Have Killed Sejal

Illustration: Sushant Ahire/Arré


can imagine how the story of Jab Harry Met Sejal must have started out. Let’s make a film about a young girl’s naivety and fresh innocence crashing into an older man’s world-weariness and do our manic-pixie-dream-girl thing while we’re at it. But somehow, a couple of years later, the film that came out veered so dangerously off course that it fell straight into the heart of all of Europe’s travel clichés.

Jab Harry Met Sejal, the much-touted release of the ever-wistful Imtiaz Ali, is a Europe tourism film, masquerading as the story of what happens when a young girl’s aspirational urban sluttiness aka her capability of being “laayak” crashes into the sexual disinterest of a man old enough to be her father.