10 years of Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara; Some Letters Filled With Gratitude

Some movies become classic when they come of age, but some are meant to be right from their onset. Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara or ZNMD, as we call it, is one of those.

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Disclaimer: This is not an article. This is a thank you note.

There are movies that stand the test of time. Movies that were ahead of their times. Movies that make you wonder what some years from now would be. Movies that bring out the true experience of cinema. Movies that take you on a journey. Movies that hold power, the magic to teleport you into a world you never want to leave.

One such movie celebrates its tenth anniversary today, on July 15th, 2021. Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara. Ten years? Yes. We already feel old.

It’s been ten years since the Zoya Akhtar Directed movie starring Abhay Deol, Hrithik Roshan, Farhan Akhtar, Kalki Koechlin, and Katrina Kaif came out in 2011. This movie was bound to be a classic the day it came out. With its impeccable cinematography, a whole pack music album, great dialogues, a simple story, and a travel guide to Spain, this movie is precisely the one you go back to on a gloomy day. It single-handedly holds the power to lift your mood any day.

This is a thank you note. So here it goes:

Dear Kabir Dewan,

Thank you for teaching us what it takes to keep your friends thick. Thank you for being the sweet, caring, funny guy who is not just a side character with no background story. Thank you for teaching us that it’s okay to give in in life and know when to stop. Thank you for initiating the trip to Spain and urging us to let go of our fears in all the ways we can.

Dear Arjun Saluja,

Thank you for teaching us that it’s not wrong to be ambitious and earn a life we always wanted to live. But thank you more for teaching us that it’s never too late to change, that it’s okay to let good people teach you great things. Thank you for teaching us what it means to be really sorry. Thank you for telling us what it really means to conquer our fears. Thank you for not canceling the trip.

Dear Farhan Qureshi,

Thank you for being the casual, messy, artistic guy with deep thoughts yet an easy-going and fun personality. Thank you for making us realize that sometimes it’s okay to be casual and just throw things out of the window (not your friend’s phone). Thank you for all the PJs. Thank you for teaching us that family is much more than just blood. Thank you from all the writers that our words need to see the light of the day.

Dear Laila,

Thank you for being a girl who runs her world, a girl who is her own boss, and a girl who only does things she loves. Thank you for making us love the deep blues and the high skies. Thank you for teaching us how important it is to be alive in the present, in the now, at the moment. Thank you for being what all girls should be, independent and carefree.

Dear Natasha,

Thank you for teaching us what we should mostly not do. But thank you for teaching us that in a career-oriented world, it’s okay to invest time in your family and relationship but not give all in. Thank you for teaching us that it is absolutely fine to let go of a person no matter how much you love them because you understand that sometimes two very good people don’t always belong. Thank you for introducing us to ‘Rock Chick’ but, most importantly, keeping events on the reload while driving.

Lastly, thank you ZNMD for being a movie we can still go back to, ten years later and feel good. Thank you for:

“Dilon mein tum apni betabiyan leke chal rahe ho. 

Toh zinda ho tum! 

Nazar mein khwaabon ki bijliyan leke chal rahe ho 

Toh zinda ho tum!

Hawa ke jhonkon ke jaise aazad rehna seekho 

Tum ek dariya ke jaise, leharon mein behna seekho 

Har ek lamhe se tum milo khole apni baahein 

Har ek pal ek naya samaa dekhiye

Jo apni aankhon mein hairaniyan leke chal rahe ho 

Toh zinda ho tum! 

Dilon mein tum apni betabiyan leke chal rahe ho 

Toh zinda ho tum!”

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