While the clock ticked at 4, I realized that I needed to pack up soon in order to exit from office and watch one of the most anticipated films of the year – Aisha. In midst of all my packing up along with some Bollywood gossip discussions, one of my colleagues expressed, "Dude, it seems like a really fun film. You're definitely gonna enjoy it!" I kind of agreed then! A promo to a film is like a cover page to a book, a presentation of its actual base. Going by the promos of Aisha, one does expect a stylish, fun, young, fast and peppy film coming by their way, and I am no exception! Well, are you guys expecting the same? Are you'll looking out for another Dil Chahta Hai or Wake up Sid? If yes, then I can just say one thing… forget about it! Aisha may be stylish and young… but it can't be termed as fun or peppy from any perspective. In short – disappointing!
"It's my life. You have no right to interfere!" Recall the innumerable number of times we might have yelled or screeched out this statement either to our parents, siblings, spouses, friends or acquaintances. Yes, everyone's their own boss and no one likes to be controlled by any other individual. Well, if you think the same way, then you rather stay away from a 'social activist' named 'Aisha'.
Based on Jane Austen's classic Emma, Aisha is a simple story of a not-so-simple girl. Aisha has just one funda – everyone's business is her business! Caught in the Delhi upper class world with its own set of social rules, Aisha navigates her world with a great sense of style and even greater optimism. Aisha makes sure everyone dances to her tune, and so does best friend Pinky, small town girl Shefali, west Delhi boy Randhir and hunk Dhruv. But there's one person who doesn't, and on the contrary thinks Aisha really needs to mind her own business; that's Arjan Barman for you. For Aisha, her behavior is a kind of social service and for Arjan, it's simple interference!
So does Aisha always get her way out? Does she recognize the difference between help and intrusion? Does she ever get the message – Don't Be Cupid!? So well Aisha - the film is all about… as expected, Aisha!
The film rolls and you are welcomed into a completely different world – Aisha's world. The first half of the film has absolutely no story, it's basically a round of introductions to the characters and the story lying ahead. But that's not my complaint as the film is yet engrossing and entertaining. And that's what the audience wants from a film, isn't it?! The scenes may not be of the caliber to make you fall of your chair with laughter, but it shall definitely bring a smile to your face. Watch out for the scenes with Cyrus Sahukar, he's the best thing to have happened to Aisha. No doubt the pace of the film is slow but regardless, you're yet interested in Aisha's world and aren't bored 'yet'.
Post-Intermission – Stretchy
The sweetness is gone; the freshness is gone… the second half of the film in simple words gets, dull and boring! The pace of the film is even slower than the first half and you tend to wonder, 'was this the young and peppy film I was looking forward to?!' A complete let down! However, two scenes are worth mentioning, that of Amrita Puri's (Shefali) outburst and Abhay Deol proposing to his love, the credit of which goes completely to the respective actors.
Director – (Rajshree
Ojha) and Writer – (Devika Bhagat)
Aisha feels like a Hollywood product. The costumes, the sets, the execution, the scenes, it simply looks international! Definite thumbs up for that! Aisha also stays away from any typical Bollywoodish dramatic scenes. Every scene, irrespective of its impact, looks real and relatable, which is noteworthy. Also, Aisha has several characters to its list and it definitely isn't an easy job to present the depth and meaning of each character on screen with such clarity. Rajshree and Devika have done a fantastic job in that section, the audience is well aware about the persona of each character in matter of no time. However, one wonders what went wrong with the pace of the film. Only if they had concentrated on the same and pepped up the story a little bit, the film could have been a treat to watch!
Costume Designers (Pernia
Qureshi and Kunal Rawal) and Art Director (Shruti Gupte)
Aisha is all about style, style and style! They are the actual stars of Aisha! The outfits look fashionable, stylish and gorgeous. The sets look stunning. Every frame on screen was colorful and beautiful. No two opinions about it, their contribution to Aisha is in one word – 'immense'.
Sonam Kapoor - Aisha
She looks stylish, gorgeous and absolutely stunning. Only if that was enough! Evident by its title, the film is about 'Aisha' and her world. The film rests upon Sonam Kapoor's shoulders and that's a lot of responsibility to put upon a 3 film old actress. Well, Sonam definitely hasn't failed but she hasn't excelled as well. Not that the character requires any histrionics for its portrayal, so Sonam is quite compatible with her character and comfortable in her performance throughout the film. But in the scenes which require her to showcase some acting potential, she just doesn't click. Very rare does an actress get a women-oriented film centered on her character as an opportunity to showcase her mettle, Sonam did get that, but she hasn't utilized it to the most. She was supposed to be the soul of the film which sadly, she isn't!
Abhay Deol – Arjan
Why are only Ranbir Kapoor, Shahid Kapur and Imran Khan always spoken about as the young talented male actors we have in this industry? Well, Abhay Deol is an actor who definitely hasn't got his due yet. However, he has once again proved that he is equally competitive and one of the finest young talents the Hindi film industry comprises of. He has so little to do in the film, but he's yet fantastic! His presence simply lights up the screen and you instantly connect with him. In fact at times something inside you just wished the film was more about him than Sonam Kapoor, and that's because he's so natural and likeable that you wish to see more of him. If Aisha works even a little bit then Abhay is one of the major reasons. Hopefully we get to see more of him soon!
Cyrus Sahukar - Randhir
He plays a supporting role but is yet the best part about the film! Do I need to say more?! If you laugh in the film, it's only thanks to this talented performer. His character being of an innocently irritating guy is a tough one to pull off, but he portrays it with absolute ease. He may be a looser in the film but he's definitely a winner for the film!
Amrita Puri –
She's the best among all the girls, including Sonam Kapoor. Well, that's some hardcore talent entering into Bollywood. In fact, in particular scenes she even manages to overshadow the heroine of the film, Sonam Kapoor, one of them being her outburst scene with the actress. An absolute delight to watch!
Ira Dubey – Pinky
She does her part well. Her scenes with Cyrus are some of the best scenes in the film. The scope of the character she plays doesn't permit her to contribute much, but she then to leaves an impact with her effortless performance. A natural performer!
Arunoday Singh (Dhruv
Singh) and Lisa Haydon (Aarti) are
hardly there. They look extremely hot and desirable, and that's what they're
supposed to, but they fail to make an impact thanks to their limited screen timing
– easily forgettable!
M.K. Raina (Mr.
Kapoor – Aisha's father) is worth a mention, he adds up to the sweetness in whatever
little we see of him in the film.
So is it a YES or NO?
For girls who are interested in checking out the costumes, it's
a must watch! For the rest, I would suggest you rather be at home. Yes, it's
sweet in parts but the smile on your face doesn't fulfill your expectations. And
even Cyrus Sahukar, Abhay Deol and Amrita Puri who represent the best in the
film can't compensate for the same. Aisha is stylish but lacks substance. You
can afford giving it a miss but if you really have nothing to do, you rather
catch up on Once Upon A Time in Mumbaai, Inception, Tere Bin Laden or Udaan if
you haven't watched any of them yet and then maybe opt for Aisha! In my opinion, it's a strictly average
film. So I would conclude saying it's a 'NO' from me, you can easily wait for the DVD I suggest!
Rating - **
Reporter and Author: Rishitu Amarnani