Sara Ali Khan and Kartik Aaryan in a still from Love Aaj Kal.

Director Imtiaz Ali’s Love Aaj Kal, starring Kartik Aaryan and Sara Ali Khan, has made approximately Rs 12 crore on its first day of release at the box office, despite poor reviews. The filmmaker is coming off Jab Harry Met Sejal, considered his biggest critical and commercial failure. This is Kartik’s highest opening yet, ahead of the Rs 9.1 crore figure posted by Pati Patni Aur Woh.

According to Box Office India, Love Aaj Kal performed exceedingly well thanks to Valentine’s Day. The report speculates that on a regular day, the film would probably have opened to Rs 8.5 crore. Box Office India predicts that the film will likely not gain over the weekend.

Imtiaz, the report suggests, has a poor track record of having long legs at the box office. With the exception of Jab We Met, his films rarely sustain momentum after week one. Love Aaj Kal did well in multiplex chains, according to the report.

The film’s opening falls in line with expectations. “It is an Imtiaz Ali film based on relationships. It is releasing on Valentine’s Day and targets the youth in metro cities. They have planned it in such a manner that it will coincide with the mood of the nation. Cinema in driven by the youth, they celebrate this day with their friends and close ones. Despite not being a holiday, the business jumps by around 15-20 % on Valentine’s Day as the youth want to indulge in leisure activities and going for a movie is on the top of their list. It will have a combined effect as the film is youthful and has been promoted well,” trade analyst Girish Johar had told Hindustan Times.

Critics, meanwhile, weren’t as enthusiastic about the film, with many complaining about Imtiaz’s lack of understanding of his characters, and comparing it unfavourably to the original film, starring Saif Ali Khan and Deepika Padukone.

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