Movie Review : Ishaqzaade
Saturday, May 12, 2012 11:56:48 AM (IST)
Rajesh Kumar Singh, Bollywood Trade Editorial
Is someone thinking of making a film on the legendary queen of Jhansi? Parineeti Chopra fits the bill. She is beautiful, confident, and an acting powerhouse. You like seeing that lively ‘desi chehra’ and thankfully the cameraman and the director of the film had the sense to let us have a good look at her expressive face in its naturalness, sans heavy makeup, and showy hairstyle. She knows how to live a role. The girl almost carries the film on her shoulders, with very few false notes. She does everything in the film from firing guns to making love and delivering as nuanced a performance as the script of the film could permit.
ISHAQZAADE is a fantastically filmy love story, a tragedy, set in a non-existent UP town. Two warring political clans, the Qureshis and the Chauhans, fight an electoral battle of political supremacy in the town. The only daughter of Qureshi, the reigning MLA seeking reelection, Zoya (Parineeti Chopra), is a feisty and fiery heroine of the film. The grandson of Chauhan patriarch, Parma (Arjun Kapoor), is a daredevil and mercurial goon with an Abhishek Bachchan smile.
Zoya and Arjun have been at loggerheads since childhood following their family rivalry. In an encounter during the electioneering in the local college, Zoya slaps Arjun as he insults her father by peeing at his poster. The Hindu boy develops a liking for the Muslim girl. And the years of ‘jhgada’ is replaced by intense love, with some interesting yet familiar twists and turns that finally lead to a major showdown and a joint action by both the clans to eliminate their renegade progenies.
There are four remarkable things about this film that are real, natural, and of some cinematic significance. Its heroine Parineeti Chopra, its photography, its locations, and its love-making scenes. They make the film worth a watch. Everything else about it is as unreal and plastic as any Yash Raj film can be - from its screenplay to the poor caricature of small town clan-rivalry, and an overdose of ultra-dramatized and glamorized gangland ‘thain thain pistolbaazi' of Bollywood kind.
The film suffers from the ancient and chronic Yash Raj debility of post-interval muck up. It has happened in almost all the films of the banner in the past few years. Here is another point. ISHAQZAADE is not a ‘fasana’ in the old mold to satisfy your urge to relive nostalgia. The claim in the film’s poster publicity is bogus.
It is shot on actual locations with minimal post-production processing. Hats off to the DOP and the director for sticking to the essentials of film-making. It is a welcome departure from the reigning trend. The Digital Intermediate (DI) art has had a devastating impact on Indian cinema, and has compounded its mediocrity.
The film has all the ingredients, yet it is a missed opportunity. The writers and director have failed to explore possibilities in its classic premise. They have missed the essential dramatic and cinematic details, and have treated the story in a cavalier fashion. The comedy ends in a sudden tragedy. It should not have happened since they had everything available on their platter. The idea of two doomed and desperate lovers trying to survive somehow, while being hounded by the world, could have been developed so much better. The climax of the film is anti-climactic and a huge let down.
We give four stars to the film. One for its photography and camera work, one for its locations, one for its love-making scenes, and one for Parineeti Chopra.
Rating - 4/5
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