Review - Bollywood First Day First Show: Ishaqzaade

Rashmi Daryanani , 11 May 2012
Ishaqzaade review
Ishaqzaade (photo credit | Yash Raj Films)

Ishaqzaade is the story of Parma (Arjun Kapoor) and Zoya (Parineeti Chopra), two spirited, headstrong people who are fueled by their passion for victory and their hatred for each other. But when two people who were made to hate each other somehow manage to fall in love along the way, what are the consequences?

Ishaqzaade has garnered a lot of interest, mostly because of the lead pair. Does this film live up to its hype? Read our Pros and Cons list to find out.

Pros:

Ishaqzaade
Ishaqzaade (photo credit | Filmfare)

(+) The lead pair. Arjun fits the role perfectly looks-wise, and pulls off the crass boy very well, especially in small nuances. However, it is undoubtedly Parineeti who steals the show. She manages to be both fiery and the girl-next-door at the same time. An absolute find; in fact I can’t gush enough about how great I thought she was. Cannot wait to see more from her; she’s definitely here to stay.

(+) Great characterization, at least pre-interval. I love when story-writers take time to flesh out their characters, and Habib Faisal does just that. Zoya is a strong female character who happily trades in a pair of jhoomkas for a gun, and won’t take crap from just anyone. Parma is crass, and you genuinely hate him for portions of the film. I love when you get a chance to actually hate the lead character – it shows thought has been put in to give them a real personality – and I thoroughly disliked Parma as a person.

Ishaqzaade
Ishaqzaade (photo credit | moviethread.com)

(+) The ‘feel’ of the film. Props to Habib Faisal for not glamorizing the film – I enjoyed the rustic, raw feel we get from the small town setting. Coupled with the characters’ rough attitudes and their coarse dialogue, this grit made the film seem fresh despite a fairly typical storyline.

(+) The music. Lovely compositions by Amit Trivedi that fit each of the film’s different moods. I also love how Pareshaan was picturized.

Cons:

Ishaqzaade
Ishaqzaade (photo credit | Yash Raj Films)

(-) The story post-interval. Just as the interval came on, I thought I had an idea where this film would go. The second half completely surprised me, and though that’s usually a good thing, it wasn’t this time. I didn’t like the direction they took the story at all – they had everything set up for a completely fresh handling of this tried-and-tested subject, but instead they went down the usually dramatic, Bollywood route. Very disappointing.

(-) The issue between the lead pair is too easily resolved. Basically, it hurt the feminist in me. Like I mentioned above, I loved Zoya’s characterization as the complete anti damsel-in-distress, the girl who’d probably do more saving than being saved. So when certain developments in the story emotionally wounded Zoya, I expected her to lash out (“hell hath no fury like a woman scorned” and all). Except she seems to cave too easily, and I couldn’t understand why she was responding to the situation the way she did, considering the strong character development early on.

Verdict:

Ishaqzaade
Ishaqzaade (photo credit | vmusicline.blogspot.com)

I know having more points on the ‘Pros’ list should mean that I’d give the film a resounding thumbs-up, but the issue is that the problems on the ‘Cons’ list are huge. When the interval came on, I thought that we could have a winner – but the post-interval portion of the film disappointed. It’s a missed opportunity for the film, but thankfully not for the lead pair – they easily prove that they definitely have it in them to make it big in Bollywood, especially Parineeti. If I were you, I’d watch this film for her alone.

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