ROCKSTAR – Movie Review
Posted by FATEMA H.KAGALWALA on November 11, 2011 | 3 Comment
PRODUCER – Dhillin Mehta
DIRECTOR – Imtiaz Ali
WRITER – Imtiaz Ali
CAST – Ranbir Kapoor, Nargis Fakhri
MUSIC – A R Rahman
Immortal love on the wings of musical passions was what Rockstar aiming to be. Undying, soul-stirring, intense love, that sees no right or wrong neither boundaries. Jordan and Heer, from different backgrounds, different worlds find themselves immersed in this kind of love. Stuff that legends are made of.
But Jordan is no average Joe. He is an unaware lad caught in the soul of an artist. He loves music and creates it like fulfilling a helpless need. In a very Om Prakash-Amitabh Bachchan moment right out of Sharaabi, his mentor tells him his songs do not have depth because he hasn’t felt pain. In one of the rare cute moments of the film Jordan aka Janardhan Jakhar sets out to fall in love so that his heart can break and out of that pain he can create deep music. He chooses Heer, a beautiful Kashmiri girl labelled ‘heartbreaker’.
First-time animosity turns into a solid friendship turns into first pangs of love turns into a consummate saga of love. A much-wanted musical sensation now, Jordan confessedly doesn’t want music anymore. All he wants is his sweetheart Heer, who is married now.
Back and forth, the film rocks in telling us the passionate love story. Imtiaz Ali, writer-director takes us through the journey in a stilted screenplay that merely reveals plot-points through montages and pathos through the fabulous but very ill-fitted songs.
The effort to create poetry onscreen is palpable. The frames are lovely (Anil Mehta, typically top class again), Ranbir Kapoor is passionately unpin-downable and Nargis Fakhri is beautiful in an other-worldly way. Their love is of soulmates and twin flames and the film weaves itself around their inseparability. Unfortunately, meandering, and cut like a patchwork quilt, the film refuses to help us engage with the fiery love or its helpless victims. The non-linear narrative seems like an experiment that didn’t quite work out.
There is stirring passion in the film, but by the time it appears, the film has already meandered too much to sustain interest. There is no mellifluousness of longing and magnetic love in the background of Jordan’s unpredictability and violence. His angst is expressed beautifully by the songs, composed by A R Rahman, living musical genius for a long time to come. But these songs do not sync with the story or its movements. Theirs is one world and the film’s is quite another. In contrast with the phenomenal range of the songs Rahman keeps the background music rather minimal which works to the overall advantage.
The patchiness continues right till the end with a startlingly unsteady editing by otherwise very dependable Aarti Bajaj. You never settle in, sigh or let one out. The minute you try to, you are jerked off into another direction, to listen to some other heartbeat of the lovers that really doesn’t connect or stir enough, just because it isn’t played well enough.
Amongst the melee of discordant love and creativity gone awry shines a consummate performer-Ranbir Kapoor. He fills every frame with honest, involved and impassioned character that stuns beyond the inefficacy of the film to truly move. If not for him and Rahman, the film could have turned out almost missable.
The film swings in a Bollywood la la land where authenticity meets dream world in a make-shift manner. Rockstar takes this convenience even farther. So if Jordan’s middle-class world is painted with warm detail, Heer’s is prototyped. The fact that it is full of non-actors doesn’t help much. Every actor except the talented Shernaz Patel performs with an artistry that swings from deadpan to over-done in crazy oscillation. Nargis Fakhri’s complete lack of histrionic ability and accented diction damage the film strongly, which otherwise could have been a soul-stirring love story even if flawed.
The film begins and ends with a quote by the Sufi poet Rumi about love being above and beyond the worldly rules of right and wrong. Wish some experiments were too. Then it wouldn’t hurt that an experiment with so much talent associated went so badly wrong.