Film Review: Rock On 2
Date: November 11 2016
Director: Shujaat Saudagar
Cast: Farhan Akhtar, Shraddha Kapoor, Arjun Rampal, Purab Kohli, Shashank Arora
Rating: 3 stars
In the year 2008 Excel produced Rock On that had the country jiving to Shankar Ehsan Loy’s music. It told the story of four likeminded friends Joe – Adi – Rob and KD who come together to form their own band and create magic! Then like it happens in all relationships, conflict led to separation of friends until Adi’s wife brings them together again. There is some resistance and awkward moments but not for long.
Eight years later Rock On 2 brings back some old and some new characters. A few years older and wiser Joe/ Arjun Rampal, wife/ Shahana Goswami, Adi/ Farhan Akhtar, wife/ Prachi Desai and KD/ Purab Kohli are still friends and as passionate about music but have different callings.
Now guitarist Joe is the owner of a prosperous music company often spotted as celebrity host on reality shows, KD is still a practicing music engineer and Adi, the lead singer of Magik Band has retired to a life of farming in Meghalaya.
Rock On was about conflict in friendship and also about struggle for success, Rock On 2 addresses demons from the past, about coping with stardom that comes after success.
Both have music from Shankar Ehsaan Loy and are written by Pubali Chaudhari and Abhishek Kapoor but the impact is not the same.
The sequel has too many past and present stories scattered within the narrative. It is unconvincing that Farhan Akhtar should live away from the family in a remote place. The fire at Meghalaya is exaggerated and also the emotional involvement of Adi’s friends in the crisis. The first half is bombarded with information, is too slow and too grim. The film is about music and the first song appears only 30 after minutes.
What works about the film is the second half, the climax and the performances – Farhan, Shradha , Arjun, Purab, Shashank and a special mention of new face Priyanshu Painyuli who stays with you long after the film is over.
Rock On 2 will try your patience initially but you will eventually come out of the theater smiling.
Bhawanaa Somaaya/ @bhawanasomaaya