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Movie Review - Ishqiya

Ishqiya - the film is as intriguing as its tiltle. Although this movie is directed by debutant Abhishek Chaubey, it has shades of Vishal Bharadwaj all over it. The experience starts even before the first scene flashes, for the Disclaimer (the thing which says "All characters in this movie.... blah... blah...) is in Hinglish, the way people speak it in UP.

Ishqiya takes you in the bad, gun-toting, caste-wars ridden world of the cow belt in no time. Our protagonists, Khalujaan (Naseeruddin Shah) and Babban (Arshad Warsi) take us on a Ibn-E-Batuta type journey. The little details in the movie are so beautifully captured that when the big road-side hoarding reads, "गोरखपुर विकास प्राधिकरण आपका स्वागत करता है", you feel you have really arrived in a world frozen in time with no bijli, paani or sadak. The choice of cuss-words is also unique with Chutiyam Sulphate slated to become the next buzz-word! To those who are wondering what Chutiyam Sulphate means, its derived from Copper Sulphate CuSO4. Somehow it became, ChuSO4, then Chutiyam Sulphate.

Krishna Verma (Vidya Balan) oozes sensuality. Her confidence is shown in the way she lets two complete strangers stay in her house and then uses them to achieve her ends. Naseeruddin Shah, as usual, gives a perofrmance to reckon with. His little efforts at romancing Krishna are so sweet, that when the song "Dil Toh Bachcha Hai Ji" comes up with him day-dreaming about Krishna, you feel a weird tingling in your stomach and a smile on your lips.

Arshad Warsi shows his rough side but ultimately falls for Krishna's charms. The fact that Abhishek Chaubey has managed to let a love-story bloom in the middle of the guns and killings, speaks volumes about the grip that he has over his craft. You can almost feel Khalujaan's pain and anger at Krishna, when he catches her with Babban in a comprimising position. What right he has over her that he feels so frustrated, the question is asked by Krishna and like Khalujaan even you cannot answer it.

The movie slightly lets you down at the end with too many things happening in too little time. It becomes too filmy to digest. But this is the only aberration in an otherwise flawless movie. Go watch it and let yourself be surprised.

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