Ishq Review - A Shane Nigam Show All The Way
Anuraj Manohar's 'Ishq' is an intriguing thriller for how the drama is conceived into the story. The film literally has three to four major scenes with two extended sequences contributing to its major screentime. One, the act and other, the revenge! And with this, the film stretches out a interestingly executed ambient, thriller!
The film that gradually starts as an intimate love story creepily sweeps into a thriller drama when a stranger comes in the way. Anything more would spoil the show for the viewer given how everything about this movie is in its telling and gripping visual coldness.
One of the brilliant moves in the film is that it doesn't man up its protagonist into a hero but make him play it within his limits. He fears a lot, shivers a lot, trembles a lot yet doesn't fail to give back. Even when he settles his terms with the villain at the end.. he does it within his character traits and doesn't end up doing sketches or call for his gangs as we expect in a film of this kind.
Shane Nigam as Sasi, yet again put out a great show of what a versatile actor he is! Be it the helpless victim in the first half or the triggered man all set to take a revenge in the latter part, he delivers a high octane performance that sets you hooked to the screen.
Ann Sheetal as Vasudha plays her role to its fullest fears and strengths. We wish we know her a little better as much as we know him, given the extreme the character go towards the end. Shine Tom Chacko, plays Alwin, a creepy stranger who intrudes into the couple's life. The demon show he pulls off is brilliant. And so is, Jaffer Idukki, who plays his handman.
However, my favorite character in the film is that of Alwin's wife, Mariya, played by Leona Lishoy. It comes off as the only outsider to the story who gets to judge all that that has happened. The entire act where Sasi visits her at Alwin's very home is spine chillingly executed. The imagery of Sasi's face over a photo of Jesus.. revenge happening over big rioting drums of Easter.. the mood is a mayhem. Sasi leaves it upto Mariya to decide what to do any further.
The problem with the film is, the grey shade of the protagonist does gets overboard and cringy at places. (Given how at both the scenarios, women become the center or trump card of violence / abuse) Is it just about teaching him a lesson? And in that sense, how different is Sasi from Alwin? What is his stand as a (moral) man? We never get that!
I find it bit too much at one go with what Vasudha does at the end. I felt there was no need for that as I would have happily left on seeing them finally finding peace together. The director might have looked it out as a bang! But.. it never really hits you rather than as a mere closure shock value!
The film holds an applaud-worthy technical finesse with respect to the score and cinematography. The edit is powerful. The usage of sound design deserves a mention. With realistic performances and a tone & mood to hold it all together, Ishq is definitely a film you can't miss out in big screens!
Anuraj Manohar's thriller tale, 'Ishq' that comes with the tag line 'Not a love story' definitely isn't a normal one. The whooping twists and turns with Shane Nigam's terrific performance makes the film engaging, interesting and gets us constantly hooked!
Rating : 3/5