Vidya Balan has drummed up a delectable performance in ISHQIYA. She's the widow whose life has suddenly exploded from its shell; a lover; a woman who misses those 'tender' moments and one who is out to exact revenge. A bundle of contradictions who has a deadly secret up her sleeve. You can't help but fall in love with her character, Krishna Verma, delivered with intense finesse.
Arshad Warsi is back in the 'circuit' with his powerhouse performance as Babban. A goon, with lust in his eyes who realizes what it is to be in love when he meets Krishna. He also learns the meaning of betrayal when Krishna trains the gun on him. A performance delivered with the accuracy of a lunatic.
Naseeruddin Shah as Khalujaan puts life in the character of a pure romantic caught in the cesspool of crime. His careful romancing of Krishna is a pure delight. He draws you to his plight with his reaction when he learns his nephew, Babban, has already scored with her.
So, who's the one Krishna truly loves. Or does she love at all? She's this mysterious woman around whom the movie is cleverly woven.
The movie begins with a bang opening with tender moments between Krishna and her husband who is a terror in his village. Verma is an ace at kidnapping business tycoons in Gorakhpur and demanding ransom. She wants him to surrender. He loves his clan more than he loves his wife. There's a blast in their home and she is widowed. Or is she?
Khalujaan and Babban are two thieves working for Mushtaq, a don with a soft heart but a tough exterior. At first instance, you fall in love with these two characters with their quirky traits. They loot their boss and are on the run. They land in Gorakhpur to seek shelter in the house of Verma, their old friend. Instead, they meet his wife Krishna. Here is where the cat and mouse game begins. Khalujaan is fond of Krishna and she even responds, but Babban, has other plans where Krishna is concerned.
Producer, music director, screenplay and dialogues are all credited to Vishal Bharadwaj while Abhishek Chaubey is the first-time director. But there is no mistaking the distinct Bhardwaj impression on the presentation. The dialogues are witty, corny and peppy and at times even bounce over your head. This because the film has stayed true to its rustic setting in the interiors of Uttar Pradesh. The screenplay is just perfect with every object positioned in the right place. What's interesting is that the camera never misses even one expression from the characters in the frame to any given situation.
Bhardwaj has scored a hit with 'Dil To Bachcha Hain Ji'.
Every scene is a delight and Vidya has proved once again that she will not shy from locking lips if the script demands. And the demand of the script here was huge. Her lip lock with Arshad Warsi is pure, animal passion. It captures the mood of the moment. Just like the lip lock with Madhavan in GURU, which was full of warmth. From GURU to ISHQIYA there have been many lip locks, but I guess Vidya is second to none.
Every actor delivers and everyone involved in the making of this movie deserves credit. Adil Husain as Krishna's husband and Master Alok Kumar as Nandu, deserve special mention.