Ten years to Rock On: Movie Review!



When in love, the real voyage begins not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes (the person you choose to marry). The beginning of love is the will to let those we love be perfectly themselves and not twist them to fit our own image. If in loving them we do not love what they are, but only their potential likeness to ourselves, then we do not love them: we only love the reflection of ourselves we find in them.

Rock On is a story of a failed musician, Aditya, that has put his passion in the past in the quest of the good life of the city. He is married to Sakshi (Prachi Desai). He's a banker and makes potloads of money helping the rich get richer. 

As he tries to escape the past of forgoing a thriving music career that had fallen prey to manipulation, egos and inequality, he further dwindles into a volcano of despodency and obscurity. Not liking what you do for a profession is like a detour on the highway that initially tempts you but it can get to be stifling, costly and painful. 

The movie actually begins when Sakshi realizes that she is pregnant and that Aditya's misery needs to be resolved because you need to be happy and stable for you to take care of your child. 

She decides to revive that passion she can connect with him and make him a happier person. The disconnect isn't because he doesn't love her but because he was unable to create success out of his dream. He feels like he has failed himself so he has lost the capability of making anyone else happy. 

The flick then gets into a flashback when he was in this band. It consisted of four musicians that had drifted apart due to misunderstandings.

Years later, they are reunited because of Sakshi and their dreams by forgetting their woes and embark on a journey they had left incomplete. The movie flits between them as they are today, and then, and what went wrong. 

You've seen them before, you've been a fan of them in your teens and you keep playing their music back in your 30s, 40s and 50s because they're your go-to fix for sadness. That band consists of Aditya,  KD sits in inefficiently at his father's jewellery business; Joe clutches his guitar as a failed musician would -- and does pretty much nothing else anyway -- when his wife Debbie (Sahana Goswami) yells at him in a typical Anglo-Indian family. Only Rob has stuck with playing music, doing sessions for directors like Anu Malik (who puts in a cameo as himself).  

Two aspects that are highlighted in the movie are: 

Firstly, the story. Its brilliance personified. From the smooth transitions between past and present, to the suspense factor carried throughout, the writing does full justice to the story, all the while keeping you fully preoccupied. Its quite lambent in its humor and emotions yet very apt for the generation that has come of age and has a renewed sense of understanding of life. Its refreshingly new but its got all the cliches of those Archies comics you would read on those doltish flights. Great for nostalgia. 

Secondly, the portayls. The heart of a film exists in your ability to empathize with the characters. The protagonists in Rock On are full of flaws and many aren’t dwindling in those grey areas. Abhishek does a good job of covering the economic spectrum of people and their values. While Arjun is a poor musician (fisherman) that is unable to get out of the pangs of poverty, he's a dedicated husband and father. Then again Aditya is super-rich yet he is extremely disconnected from his wife. They come off as endearing, and the credit for that must go to the actors inhabiting those roles. The extremely talented Purab Kohli may be reduced to the "sidies" here and there, but he gives the film some of its nicest moments.


Lastly, Rock On's music is the silver lining on the cloud and all credit to Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy.  And it’s courageous on the part of the film’s makers that they went with Farhan’s vocals for the songs that are filmed on him. The USP of the film is that it doesn't try to be different. Accepting differences and working towards happiness is what being in love is about. What's so great about normal anyway?