I am just back after watching Ishqiya and am awash with its honesty and originality in all respects. It is not quite often that you find such original films from your usual Bollywood stables.
Ishqiya is a tale of how two ruffians, who are running away from a gang-lord, need to take shelter at a widow’s house and how this stay plays out. “Ishq” (love) is the overpowering emotion that runs throughout the film. All the three characters experience it in their own way, which is why the name.
The widow is played by Vidya Balan, in which we see a powerful female protagonist after a long time. She plays Krishna who knows her mind and speaks it too – cuss words and all. This, according to me, is Vidya’s coming of age movie, where she portrays a real woman, far removed from her earlier plastic glamdoll roles (Though I admit I have not yet watched Paa). I am sure she could be a formidable contender for the Best Actress award in 2010.
The other two protagonists are Naseer and Arshad Warsi. Now, what can one say about Naseer which has not been said before. An actor par excellence, he gets under the skin of his character so beautifully. Arshad Warsi is simply a delight to watch. His body language of a desi ruffian is flawless, complemented by some brilliant dialogues in regional accent. And their hilarious comedy is a treat.
It is a completely desi film set in the eastern UP with gun running and kidnapping industry forming the backdrop. And as I said earlier, the honesty of the film lies not only in the realistic backdrop but also the emotional interplay between the characters. There is none of that soft-lens romance but only raw emotion which flows throughout.
It is only the ending, which, I felt could have been more rounded off. But that is only a small hitch, which should not at all prevent you from watching this brilliant film from Abhishek Chaubey. Do go and enjoy it.