''Did you have to say Bollywood? I hate that term!"
''Success and failure are just choices you make."
Highly meta film about the Mumbai film industry (don't call it Bollywood
!) from the perspective of everyone from struggling newbie actors to famous producers. A commercial failure, but it's on its way to becoming a cult film favorite. One thing is certain: this movie sure had a lot of cameos
Contains the following tropes:
- Absence Makes the Heart Go Yonder: While probably very fond of Sona, Vikram still doesn't waste any time hitting on Nikki when he's apart from his girlfriend.
- Acquired Situational Narcissism: Vikram was probably always a little narcissistic.
- Always Second Best: Sona always plays this characters in movies, much to her annoyance.
- Arc Words: See the second quote on the top of the page.
- A Lighter Shade of Grey: While not taking it to the extent of many other characters in this movie, Sona has done pretty sketchy things in order to make it in the industry.
- As Himself: Half of the "characters" in this film fulfill this trope.
- All Love Is Unrequited: Are there any happy couples in this film?
- All-Star Cast: There are approximately a dozen cameos a minute. This is an oddly rewarding experience if you're at all familiar with famous people in bollywood.
- Bittersweet Ending: Happiness doesn't always come from the expected sources.
- Bollywood Homely: Sona
- Casting Gag: "You're like a father to me, Rommy." - Ranbir Kapoor (playing himself) talking to Rommy Rolly, who was played by ... his real life father. Dur hur.
- Convicted by Public Opinion: Right before his first movie releases, Vikram endures a slew of bad PR. It's all true, and the movie is a hit because people go to see the movie out of curiosity.
- Crowning Moment Of Heart Warming: Yeh Zindagi Bhi is a five minute long love letter to the crew of bollywood films.
- Dawson Casting: Farhan Akhtar as a "26-year-old." He is very handsome, but... No.
- Designated Hero: Vikram. Subverted in that the movie plays with expectations that the male lead is the main character. The big reveal in the end is that Sona is the author backed role.
- Did Not Get the Girl: Apparently advice from Shah Rukh Khan can fail!
- Earn Your Happy Ending: Sona is happy and content at the end, but only after 1. sleeping with a director who refuses to actually secure her a role she wants 2. In turn being cheated on by her boyfriend 3. having all of these details broadcast throughout magazines and tabloids.
- Earworm: Baawre, baawre, baaaaaaaawre! *Shimmy shimmy shimmy*
- Ensemble Darkhorse: Who knew Hrithik Roshan could be that intentionally hilarious?
- Family-Unfriendly Aesop: Vikram becomes famous through extremely underhanded means, while Sona gains a moderate amount of success through less manipulative methods. Both are portrayed as essentially correct decision under their particular views of happiness and success.
- God Save Us from the Queen!: Neena Wallia. Though, like many characters in this movie, she is depicted with some sympathy.
- Heel Face Door Slam: Sona does an extremely mild version of this to Vikram when he asks for forgiveness. With good reason.
- Hey, It's That Guy!!: Boman Irani!
- Irony as She Is Cast: Farhan Akhtar, Konkona Sen Sharma and Hrihik Roshan are all star kids, and their characters would probably hate the actors that portray them. Likewise, Isha Sharvani (who plays the actress starring in Dil Ki Aag) has minimal industry connections.
- Jade-Colored Glasses: Sona, by the time Vikram arrives in Mumbai.
- Karma Houdini: It's up to the audience to decide whether Vikram is this.
- Know When to Fold 'Em: Ultimately, Sona goes this route.
- Little Miss Snarker: Sona.
''I said 'why not?'"
- Melodrama: The plot of Dil Ki Aag in general.
- Meta Guy: Zaffar pointing out the flaws in Ranjit's script.
- Minor Insult Meltdown: Vikram has one of these in the first half. Though his roommate was kind of being a jerkass.
- One-Scene Wonder: Anurag Kashyap (probably playing himself) trying to change the ending of Dil Ki Aag. In a movie full of memorable cameos, his still was one of the fan favorites.
- Second Act Break Up: Literally, given the way most bollywood films are structured around an intermission.
- Slave to PR: Pretty much all characters in this movie. Careers are made and destroyed based on publicity and connections.
- Sliding Scale of Idealism Versus Cynicism: All over the damn place.
- Subverted Trope: Many. Particularly in regard to what the audience expects from lead characters.
- They Look Just Like Everyone Else: Vikram is hot, which is a slight aversion, but that's not the point because many people trying to break into Bollywood are attractive in this film. He's able to rather cruelly manipulate pretty much everyone he meets in order to score the lead role in what proves to be a successful film. And no one, except probably Neena, expects a thing!
- Upper-Class Twit: Nikki Walia. Though she did have plans to be a vet.