Abhishek Chaubey’s directorial debut, Ishqiya has received rave reviews in the weeks since it’s release. Naturally I was keen on watching the movie, not just for the reviews, but because of the cast. With acting talents like Naseeruddin Shah, Arshad Warsi and Vidya Balan, the movie showed genuine promise. So I was very keen on catching this movie. To the extent that I was willing to watch the late show on a work day! Unfortunately, I am glad I didn’t!
With a star cast that is the who’s who of fine acting, Ishqiya had the potential to be one of the most critical successes of the new year. Instead, what you get is a steady momentum building up to nothing substantial.
What is perhaps the most disappointing, apart from other things, is the climax of the movie. I’m all for open endings in movies, but in Ishqiya it seems forced and doesn’t really add any value to the overall plot or storyline.
Even the stellar music, which has been doing the rounds of all music stations, doesn’t offer any respite. The funky number Ibn-E-Batuta is played as a background number as the opening credits roll. Seems like the music video we’ve been watching is either a teaser or was brutally chopped off on the editing table. However the other popular song, the soulful “Dil To Bachcha hai Ji” is beautifully rendered.
Credit should be given to the actors for their heartfelt rendition of the characters that they portray. The talent in the movie is apparent with each performer doing a bang-up job of staying true to their character. The wardrobe, language, locations and even the extra absolutely echo North-East India’s rural setting of the movie
The movie does have some good humor, such as the angle of the steel tycoon KK and his twisted love story. However these moments are too few and too far from each other.
The ONLY thing that left an impression on me was the passionate kissing scene between Arshad Warsi and Vidya Balan (yea, Naseeruddin doesn’t get the girl after all!). This is perhaps the most scintillating and long on screen “smooch” between lead actors in a Bollywood flick, well at least from what I recall.
What surprises me is that yet again the media has given undue praise for this flick and given it rave reviews in almost all leading newspapers. Ishqiya has been touted as the kind of movie Tarantino fans will adore. Perhaps they were referring to movies like the second volume of Kill Bill!