Tamasha is a 2015 Indian romantic comedy drama film written and directed by Imtiaz Ali and produced by Sajid Nadiadwala under his banner, Nadiadwala Grandson Entertainment. It features Ranbir Kapoor and Deepika Padukone in lead roles. The film score and soundtrack album were composed by A. R. Rahman, while lyrics for the songs were written by Irshad Kamil.
The film opens with Ved (Ranbir Kapoor) and Tara's (Deepika Padukone) monotonous back stories as people in the corporate world.[clarification needed] A flashback shows, as a child in Shimla, Ved is fascinated by the stories narrated by a road side story teller (Piyush Mishra) who keeps mixing up his characters.
The film moves to real time where Tara meets adult Ved, while both are holidaying in Corsica. They come up with an amusing verbal pact to keep their real identities undisclosed. They explore the island together. They pretend to be "Don" and "Mona Darling" and talk in filmy dialogues. When she realizes she is falling in love with Ved, Tara decides to leave Corsica despite the romantic friendship with him. The story flashes back to young Ved who questions the story-teller about the reason for happy times ending quickly and notices each story has a sad episode in it.
Tara returns to Kolkata, India. Tara's father (played by Nikhil Bhagat) hands over his tea business to Tara, she expands it by starting a line of tea boutiques, taking the company ahead. She is off to Delhi for work and four years have passed. One day, Tara surprisingly meets Ved, who is now a product manager. They reveal their original identities. They plan for a date at a Japanese restaurant. She expects him to talk like the days in Corsica but Ved talks about business. She calls Ved up home to be intimate. Ved leaves for his home and next morning Ved wakes up on time, completes the morning chores, wipes the car, ignores the transgender on the way, lets a female colleague into the lift—all this happens on his way to the office. He fixes a plan for meeting Tara again in the evening. Each morning to evening, similar incidents repeat monotonously. On Ved's birthday, he proposes to Tara but she is unhappy with the real-life Ved. She declines the proposal. Ved leaves for his home by an auto-rickshaw. The driver (played by Ishteyak Khan) narrates how his dreams of becoming a singer were crushed. Ved breaks down and his residual mental disorder is triggered.
An exacerbated Ved due to his Borderline personality disorder ends up upsetting his boss with nonsensical presentation in a business meeting. Ved begs Tara to come back to his life. She indirectly informs him she is fixated in Ved's divergent personality from Corsica, not the matured Ved who lives by societal conventions. Later Tara expresses her realization of hurting him and apologizes. Frustrated Ved leaves. Next day, Ved continues his office routine with a change, gives a diamond ring to the transgender and he gets evicted from his workplace for his continuous mindless behaviors.
Ved comes back to Shimla and reveals he was jobless and wandering for six months. After a tussle with his father, Ved gains introspection from a reflection in the mirror, he realizes that to complete his own story, he needs to meet the old story-teller. The old story-teller criticizes Ved's irrationality, and confronts him to complete his own story. This opens Ved's eyes. Ved narrates his life story to his family members. Moved by this, his father forgives him for leaving engineering and lets Ved pursue his life as he wishes.
Ved returns to Delhi and takes the diamond ring returned to him by the affectionate transgender. Tara, after finishing a business meeting at Oracle in Tokyo, heads for refreshment where she finds a note titled "Don Returns". Perplexed about Ved's presence, she moves around the office campus and Ved draws her attention with the "Don" personality from Corsica. The film goes into a flashback and shows scenes from Shimla of a free spirited-young Ved, a college going Ved and an adult Ved. The film returns to present day (first scene of the film) where Ved and Tara complete the process of putting up an elaborated skit on stage (in continuation of the opening scene of the film) a spectacle which depicts of their own life story.
The film opened with mixed to positive reviews, with ravishing response over the performance of both Ranbir and Deepika as well as their on-screen chemistry, however they criticised over the story, screenplay and the unsatisfactory togetherness of the plot. Critic Mehul of Deccan Chronicle awarded 4 stars (out of 5) and stated, "Imtiaz Ali, in this film, creates a different world and makes you believe in it till the last shot of the film." Ananya Bhattacharya of India Today gave the film 3.5 stars (out of 5), writing, "In all, Tamasha is vintage wine. There are inhibitions that keep you from falling head-over-heels in love with the film the first time you watch it. Once done away with the initial hesitation, Tamasha is an experience." For The Times of India, critic Priya Gupta said, "The route Tamasha takes is long-winded and plain boring at times." She gave the film 3 stars (out of 5). Pallavi Patra of Zee News gave the film 3.5 stars (out of 5) claimed, " A clear picture of how twisted your life can get under the painful currents of life. All said and done, the clear winners in this 'drama' are the protagonists, more than the story itself."
For The Huffington Post, critic Supratik Chatterjee writes, "Tamasha is, in many ways, a culmination of the recurring themes in Ali’s filmography. It is tonally messier than his last film, Highway, but more emotionally satisfying than Rockstar and brings together elements from many of his films in a pleasing-enough manner." Writing for CNN-IBN, film critic Rajeev Masand called Tamasha an uneven film that oscillates between inventive and indulgent, never quite striking a consistent tone. He criticized the script but praised the performances of Kapoor and Padukone. He gave the film 2.5 stars (out of 5).Critic based at Bollywood Hungama gave the film 2 stars (out of 5) and wrote, "On the whole, Tamasha comes across as a colossal disappointment in spite of towering performances and chemistry between the lead stars." In his review for NDTV, Saibal Chatterjee gave stars (2.5 out of 5) writes, "Tamasha is at best a one-time watch because of the sparkle the leads lend to it. It could have been so much more."
Surabhi Redkar of Koimoi pointed out, "Tamasha is different but not perfect. Ranbir Kapoor and Deepika Padukone deliver fine performances." However, she awarded the film 2.5 stars (out of 5). Critic Shubhra Gupta of The Indian Express reviewed in positive stating, "Deepika is luminous, and she is much more sure-footed in her part. Even though Ranbir gets more space, Tara is drawn with welcome depth." However, she gave the film 2 stars (out of 5). Critic Subhash K. Jha for Firstpost stated, "This is a film that doesn’t entirely succeed in its endeavour to decode the heart's enigmatic excursions. But the journey is fascinating and admirable, though not entirely fulfilling." Critic Anupama Chopra, in her review to Hindustan Times writes, "Tamasha starts to feel indulgent and predictable. The writing also gets lazy — Imtiaz settles for stereotypes and simplistic resolutions."
In her review for The Hindu, critic Namrata Joshi called the film 'ponderous and protracted' Rachit Gupta of Filmfare mentioned, " Ironically, it has a story that tries to ward off mediocrity in everyday life, and yet the film only manages to evoke mixed reactions. Satya Kandala who gives the film 3 (out of 5 stars) in his review, stated " Tamasha fall short of true greatness is Ali's indulgence with the characters and situations, which at times makes the film look like it is trying too hard and a little too kitschy." However, the film received a rating of 7.2/10 on IMDb.