Directed by: Mohit Suri
Starring: Aditya Roy Kapoor, Shraddha Kapoor
Verdict: destroy every copy – horrible – bad – whatever – flawed but enjoyable - good – great – amazing
I still don´t get the massive appeal of Adiya Roy Kapoor among girls, but while he may have not gained another stan in me, Aashiqui 2 did managed to get a special entry into my „good Bollywood films of 2013“ book. It reminded me why 90s films, often flawed and far from perfect, are still ruling over hearts. It is not just about the technical aspects or acting, it is always about the story and the way it is told. Aashiqui 2 feels VERY 90s to me, and in a certain way reminded me of the first Aashiqui, even though it had nothing in common with it in terms of story, neither were there any references. I think it was the passionate love that just wants to exists, and also that the two leads are (were – till the film released) not well-known and not exactly great actors.
First Aashiqui was basically about jealousy on the professional level (where the boy couldn´t cope with the fact his girlfriend had a successful career – unlike him. Booo.) and judging by the first part of the film, I assumed it would be the same case for this one as well. A famous singer Rahul, who likes to see the bottom of the bottle, meets a beautiful, yet unsuccessful bar singer Aarohi. Taken by her voice and simplicity he decides that she should get a chance to become a superstar, and it doesn´t take him much to convince her to come to Mumbai. After few (later proven insignificant) blunders along the way Aarohi is the new sensation while Rahul himself is quickly fading away from the public mind and his career seems to have reached a dead end. Being jealous of a girlfriend would be in place, no?
It is not so though. We are not concerned about something as shallow and superficial. Love between the two protagonists has something not many movies can portray – purity. This is a love story that doesn´t waver. It stands strong. For better and for poorer. And not even death does them part, even though one of them stops breathing. In a way it reminds one of Rockstar (2011), which was even higher on emotion, passion and self-destruction, but the love in Rockstar has lot of selfishness to it. Aashiqui 2 love has none of it. It is a love of caring and sacrifice face to face in a fight with alcoholism.
However all these lovely (and painful) feelings I am having as I write come almost exclusive from the point in the story when Rahul for the first time fully admits he has a serious drinking problem and asks Aarohi to help him. That was the exact moment when I finally felt love between the characters, until then a lot spoken about but not shown in a manner that would move me. The film, for a long time, is actually rather boring. It is the last 40 or so minutes that arrive with emotions a viewer can really share.
Aditya Roy Kapoor is not a bad actor, and he does his job well, he however lacks screen presence for me, neither do I find him an eye-candy. Shraddha Kapoor, whom I previously loved in Luv Ka The End, is extremely lovely to look at, having a gentle grace of vintage actresses, sadly her dialogue delivery completely sucks (to the point I wonder if she was dubbed in LKTE) and is so monotonous it makes one cringe. She saves her performance by emoting with her eyes and face, but she will indeed have to work hard.
Since the first Aashiqui film was more about music than anything else, a lot was expected from this particular soundtrack. Does it deliver? Oh yes. All the songs are good, several deserve the label of beautiful. But ultimately on the music level the original film reminds to be way ahead of the sequel in terms or being memorable.