"I am not Zaffar Khan; Zaffar Khan is an icon, and I work for him."
This is said in half-jest, by Zaffar Khan, a superstar, played by Hrithik Roshan, who is definitely not the superstar that Zaffar Khan is meant to mock. The mocking undertones are, of course, in the eyes of the beholder on the look-out for a conspiracy. Thankfully, Luck By Chance compensates for this slight, sometime in the film.
How can one insult Hindi film heroes? It takes a lot to be a Hindi film hero. Unlike film heroines, who become so either because a) they are born to someone in the film industry or b) they work their charms i. e., sleeping with someone in the film industry, a guy has manage his luck by a) being born to someone in the film industry or b) working his charms, i. e., flirting with the heroine's superstar mum, who incidentally got there because her mum made her sleep with someone in the industry. There! Those were a lot of myths broken for you!
The plain-looking Sona (Konkona Sen Sharma) is a junior artiste struggling for a break, and fuels her dreams by getting used by a casting director. Enter Vikram Jaisingh (Farhan Akhtar), a fiery, smart theatre actor who comes to Mumbai, from Delhi, to become a film hero. Though slightly naive at first, Vikram finds his way around pretty soon. Oh, of course, Sona and Vikram are girlfriend and boyfriend now.
Good news comes for Vikram when Zaffar Khan (Hrithik Roshan), a reigning star, wriggles out of a big-budget film that is launching a star-daughter, Nikki (Isha Sharvani), whose mother is played by the ever-so-graceful Dimple Kapadia. Romy Rolly (Rishi Kapoor), the film's producer, whose son (Sanjay Kapoor) is directing the film, is hurt by Zaffar's insensitivity, and Nikki's mum is concerned about her daughter's debut.
Vikram is cast as hero, he has an affair with the heroine, gossip scandalizes the hero-heroine pair even before the film releases, hearts are broken, and after some heavy brooding and success' lessons spelt out (in what is possibly the best dialogue of the film, delivered by an extremely special person - sure, the film saves the best for the last!), things calm down.
Luck By Chance has a story which is one long string of insider jokes and cliched situations - with sneers at corporate production houses, doting mothers of heroines, bloated star-egos, rejected roles, atrocious script-writing - everything that is supposedly fun to watch because we're terribly curious about how Bollywood works and because we don't believe the rumours.
Definitely, hearts go aflutter and fingers get pointed to the screen whenever those stars make their special appearances, and that happens a million times in the film. And that's what you realize is your money's worth. And that's what you should also really settle for as your money's worth, unless you are a huge fan of Farhan Akhtar or Konkona Sen Sharma.
Which brings us to another problem - that of an image misfit. Both the lead actors are star-kids themselves (highly talented though they are), neither of them seemimgly cares much for mainstream cinema, and surely, neither of them is 'struggling'. And Akhtar, for all the effort he puts in to look like a person who wants to make it big as a 'hero', appears to be scorning the very character he plays. Konkona, of course, puts in a great performance.
Rishi Kapoor and Dimple Kapadia have major roles, and both are wonderful, while an over-the-top Juhi Chawla, who plays the role of Rolly's wife, shockingly messes up every scene she's in. Isha Sharvani, with another key role in the film, is equally shocking - what on earth is with her make-up? She sure didn't look like she was from earth, and that's not a compliment. The rest of the main cast is faultless, however, and like we mentioned, the one-cameo-per-15-minutes policy spices up things very well.
Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy come up with a great soundtrack, but very few songs. The camera loves all the faces that come in front of it, and everyone looks like a million bucks - mainly Dimple and Farhan Akhtar.
Luck By Chance is decent fare for those who are fascinated by Farhan Akhtar. And for those who are fascinated by John Abraham. Or Boman Irani. Or Akshaye Khanna. Or Vivek Oberoi. Alright, we'll stop there.