Expectations are indeed humongous from any musical offering from the music wizard, A.R. Rahman, as the maestro has set very high standards for himself. His hallmark of brilliance was last visible in the album of Yash Chopra's swan-song JAB TAK HAI JAAN. The music of EROS's Aanand L. Rai directed (of TANU WEDS MANU fame) RAANJHANAA, which introduces the 'Kolaveri Di' star Dhanush (to the Hindi audience), is set against the backdrop of the pious city of 'ghats' Banaras, and promises to be a classic. This time though lyricist Irshad Kamil is the chosen one and Gulzar Sahab will certainly be missed. So we get down to business and check the 'Oscar Rahman' music of the film.
title track is a superb fusion of Hindustani classical and western symphony and is rendered by Sukhwinder and Shiraz Uppal. The song underlines the strong feelings of the lead protagonists brilliantly with excellent words penned by Irshad Kamil.
The neo nightingale Shreya Ghoshal's endearing vocals is accompanied by Meenal Jain, Amwesha Datta Gupta in chorus. Rahman's alluring semi-classical melody and of course, the scintillating '
sitar', flute and 'tabla' jugalbnadi are the highlights of 'Banarasiya'
. Irshad Kamil's lyrics too are in sync and add to the earthy folk flavor of the song. A musical treat indeed!CHECK OUT: RAANJHANAA Movie Review
Finally the number that has been the center of attention ever since its first teaser, 'Tum Tak'
, an excellent love ballad that has so many shades that it is difficult to classify. At times it's the simple raga based melody that hooks, then it's the traditional 'qawwali' form that attracts, then the 'bhajan'
part takes over, and of course the semi-classical notes are just exceptional and only the wizard himself could have created a track like that. Javed Ali excels and Pooja Av and Keerti Sagathia support well.
Rahman has done this time and again with aplomb and he does it yet again with 'Piya Milenge'
, a sufi-classical 'tasawwuf'
song (where the beloved is akin to god) is converted to fit into the situation, keeping in mind the 'Ganga-Jamuni'
sanskriti/ tahzeeb of Banaras. Kamil's lyrics which infuse divinity with love, are the icing on the cake. Sung superbly by trusted aide, Sukhwinder (no one else could have justice to this) and is given company by KMMC Sufi Ensemble and Rahman himself who comes in briefly and together they carve out a timeless classic.
Set in Benaras, Rai quickly establishes the credentials of the two families and the other pivotal characters. Apart from Swara Bhaskar who is quietly making a mark of her own, Mohammed Zeeshan Ayub as Murari, Kundan's friend, breaks through with a cracker of a performance. There's also Vipin Sharma who is sparingly used but whose fleeting moments on screen leave a lasting impression. It's moments like these that make RAANJHANAA a delight. Rai has understood well the use of characters, in order not to make them overbearing.
This is Sonam Kapoor's breakthrough moment. Her TEZAAB. The genius was always there within (read AN OPEN LETTER TO SONAM KAPOOR
). All she needed was one big moment and it has come in the form of Zoya. She came close in MAUSAM, but only just. Finally, she stands tall with a role that oscillates from being shy and in love to cold and ruthless. She handles the swing with equal aplomb. You don't know whether to hate Zoya or love her. CHECK OUT: Dhanush's screen mom Urmila loves RAANJHANAA climax!
RAANJHANAA is not a love triangle; it handles the emotions of four young lovers. And what draws you to it is the opening dialogue as Kundan goes into flashback. There's something in the simplicity in his voice and his diction. His parting dialogue too, is practical and full of love. It will tear you apart. ''Mood nahin hai,'' he says with that same love even though he has been 'stabbed in the back'. Listen to the entire sentiment.
As you leave the theatre, you feel that 'Titanic' emotion.