Saturday 3 April 2010

Ishqiya [2010]

In the trend set by the likes of Maqbool and Omkara, Ishqiya is an Indian-curry version of the Western and Noirs. The fact that the movie’s director Abhishek Chaubey had assisted Vishal Bharadwaj (who in turn acted as the movie’s producer) prior to getting the nod to helm Ishqiya, was apparent in terms of the movie’s feel and content. However that doesn’t mean Chaubey is just another wannabe filmmaker blindly imitating his guru, and fortunately for us viewers, that too was clearly evident as to how the film managed to diverge from, say, Omkara. Set in the rural, crime-ridden badlands of Bihar and Uttar Pradesh, two rogues, the romantic Khalujaan and his sleazy testosterone-driven nephew Babban (played memorably by Naseeruddin Shah and Arshad Warsi, respectively), find themselves on the run from their boss, and take refuge in a mansion owned by Krishna, a seductive, voluptuous and foul-mouthed widow – a rustic femme fatale if you will (Vidya Balan is pitch-perfect in the most audacious role of her career). Khalujaan starts wooing Krishna in the old-fashioned way, while Babban straightaway goes about trying to bed her; meanwhile both are glibly unaware that the mysterious dame has carefully-laid plans of her own. The breezy script, the saucy content, the darkly comic settings, and the complete lack of any pretence, all added up to make the movie a thoroughly entertaining ride.

Director: Abhishek Chaubey
Genre: Thriller/Black Comedy/Action/Neo-Noir
Language: Hindi
Country: India

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