In Gulshan Nanda’s Hindi novel – Sisakate Saaz (on which Hindi movie ‘Mehbooba’ was made in 1976 starring Rajesh Khanna and Hema Malini in lead roles), the singer hero, Prakash tells the heroine (she is also a singer), Ratna -‘Aapki Aawaaz Mein Kashish Hai Lekin Dard Ki Kamee Hai’ (your voice is fascinating but it’s deficient in conveying pain). The maker of the movie under review, i.e., Rockstar (2011) has picked up this message only. There are many such examples pertaining to the genius artists whose heartbreaks led them to stardom (by refinement of their talent). I remember the example of a teenager, Saahir who, after getting his heart broken through the discard of a girl, went on to become one of the greatest Shaayars (Urdu poets) and the world knows him as Saahir Ludhiyanvi. But can it happen to anybody and everybody ? I have also been suffering from heartache for years since the day the love of my life went away from me, have I been able to become a star in the art-world then ? If heartbreak makes a star, then all the bathroom-singers and casual writers of India should go on to become stars.
Ranbir Kapoor has done exceedingly well despite his confused and underdeveloped character. In fact, he can be one strong reason to watch this movie. Nargis Fakhri has also tried her level best but she seems to be miscast in the role. Among others, Kumud Mishra as Khataana is a character whose appearance on the screen provides some relief moments to the overburdened (with heavy and confusing narrative) spectators. Late Shammi Kapoor, in his last screen performance, has left his mark in the role of an esteemed clarinet player.
There is a lot of noise about A.R. Rehman’s music in this movie. It’s good and according to the mood of the movie but it’s by no means great. The song in the climax of the movie – Naadaan Parinde is good but if somebody has listened to the old songs like Itna Na Mujhse Tu Pyar Badha (Chhaya – 1961) and Ankhiyon Ko Rehne Do Ankhiyon Ke Aaspaas (Bobby – 1973), he / she can see the shadows of these and some other old songs in that. In fact, more than Rehman’s music, it’s the lyrics of Irshad Kamil which are praiseworthy.
Cinematographer has done a marvellous job. Right from the locales of Delhi to the beauty of Prague and certain other Indian and foreign locations, the complete movie is a treat to watch. It’s an eye-soothing experience, no doubt.
Imtiaz Ali has tried to be realistic in portrayal of several scenes in the movie but the basic trouble is that he has chosen an unrealistic story with unreal principal characters. His is a gigantic effort in developing the narration but he could not infuse life into the bulk of it. Hence it’s good but does not appeal. And therefore, unlike his earlier ventures, it does not have a repeat value. Nobody may like to watch it again.
In my review of Kaagaz Ke Phool (1959), I had termed that movie as an imperfect one whose imperfection itself led to greatness. Imtiaz Ali has also made an imperfect movie but unlike the former, it’s by no means great. But then, who can claim to be perfect in this world ? Let’s appreciate Imtiaz Ali’s excessive creativity which has, unfortunately (for him as well as for us), crossed the limits of sanity.
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