Dedh Ishqiya - Review
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There are seven stages of falling in love claims Dedh Ishqiya. Isn't it beautiful that the director is in love, the writer is in love, the cinematographer is in love, the producer is in love and of course, the actors are in love - with their art? They are almost at the sixth stage - obsession. Lovingly, balancing their act before they go any further towards the climax. And the beauty is they take you along with them, only leaving you behind once in a way.
With all its Urdu (I refuse to use any glorifying adjective for Urdu because it just doesn't do justice), poetry and poise, the one thing that strikes the most is its quirkiness. Who would've thought Urdu and quirk would blend so well together. A character who doesn't even have a scene in the film has a quirky dying wish.
The contrast doesn't stop here. You have a foul-mouthed Babban (Arshad Warsi), a loud-mouthed Muniya (Huma Qureshi) and wannabe poet (Vijay Raaz) even it out with their everyday speak. Further enhancing these opposites are the subtitles in English. At first annoying, but once the Urdu begins you are grateful for them.
And yet, the Urdu isn't completely out there. You can approximate what the not so known words mean from the context. Very likely, the writers took a conscious decision to dumb it down for us. A wise decision which balances between becoming too intelligent for its own good and over-explaining things. There are a couple of spots where they couldn't resist spoon-feeding though and it is jarring when it happens only because it departs from the otherwise painstakingly created regal tone of the film.
The rusty, dusty palette against the royal backdrop of a prince's palace is by itself enough to keep you engaged for a good part of the film. The music subtly stays in the background with some soulful lyrics to the songs. This works perfectly for the story that adds layer after layer to itself. I loved the subtle hints at homosexuality - both good and bad.
Then, each of the main characters has an angle of his/her own. The build-up to half-time is perfect for the twists that ensue later in the film. Interestingly, even if it is predictable you don't mind it, because it is still different from the norm. Similarly, the wit in the lines, even when predictable is done with words that you don't expect making it fresh.
Of course, it helps that you have a cast that insists on topping each other in terms of their charm, comic timing, dialogue delivery and poise as needed. Sure, you will find Madhuri Dixit a little less glamorous and vibrant than she was in her heyday. But the lady is aging gracefully. That beside the role does demand a plastic kind of poise that she carries off with elegance. And when she lets her hair down, she reminds you of her old self.
Naseeruddin Shah is lovable as the old fool in love, smitten by his latest "love of life". And yet he carries of the shade of gray believably. Arshad Warsi is of course, charming from the word go as a gullible idiot. Huma Qureshi has now mastered the art of being the woman who knows exactly what she wants. Vijay Raaz too is perfect as the villain who is as smitten as our protagonist. All of them - from Madhuri Dixit to Vijay Raaz need more roles like these. For our sakes more than theirs.
And for our sake too, if there is a Dhai Ishqiya, I am not sure if I want it to stay at this stage of love - a little less than six out of the full seven. A part of me wants the next installment to go all out and challenge us with zero spoon-feeding. A part of me wants it to stick to this balance. Why? Well, because the seventh stage is rather deadly.
- meeta, a part of the audience
- Violence: a couple fist fights.
- Language: a few abusive words (pleasant and poetic Urdu otherwise). The word "Sex" is used often.
- Nudity & Sexual content: A kiss and one scene implying two characters had sex.
- Concept: Love and betrayal.
- General Look and Feel: Rusty, dusty and yet glamorous.
Dedh Ishqiya - Movie Details
- Official Sites: Facebook Twitter YouTube Wikipedia IMDB
- Banner: Vishal Bhardwaj Pictures Pvt Ltd, Shemaroo Entertainment
- Producer: Vishal Bharadwaj, Raman Maroo
- Director: Abhishek Chaubey
- Lead Cast: Arshad Warsi, Naseeruddin Shah, Madhuri Dixit, Huma Qureshi, Vijay Raaz
- Supporting Cast: Shraddha Kapoor, Ravi Gosain, Bhuvan Arora, Manoj Pahwa
- Story: Darab Farooqui
- Screenplay: Vishal Bharadwaj, Pradyuman Kumar
- Cinematography: Setu
- Editor: Sreekar Prasad
- Background Score: Clinton Cerejo
- Action Choreography: Pradyuman Kumar
- Choreography: Pandit Birju Maharaj, Remo D'Souza
- Music Director: Vishal Bharadwaj
- Lyrics: Gulzar
- Costume Designer: Payal Saluja
- Facebook Page: Link
- Running time: 150 minutes
- Reviewer: meeta
- Language: Hindi
- Country: India
- Genres: Noir, Romance
Dedh Ishqiya - Trailer
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