Rock On 2 starts off the period of sequels that is about to continue for the next month. It was a curious decision by the makers to bankroll this sequel considering the first part wasn’t highly profitable and neither does it have a cult status as such. People who saw it, liked it and then forgot about it. The promos of the sequel haven’t helped the matters either as nothing about this movie has caught on. Can it surprise then? Let’s see.
Story: After the first movie ended, the band Magik have once again drifted apart. Adi (Farhan Akhtar) now lives in Meghalaya and has a cooperative farming thingy to help the farmers there. Joe (Arjun Rampal) lives in Mumbai and judges a reality show. KD (Purab Kohli) makes jingles and hopes to bring together the band once again. When tragedy strikes in Meghalaya, Adi comes back to Mumbai. The band comes together again with two new members – Jia and Uday (Shraddha Kapoor and Shashank Arora). But they all have demons which they want to conquer. Are they able to do it?
Screenplay and Direction: Shujaat Saudagar takes over the duty of direction from Abhishek Kapoor and badly fumbles in his attempt. The music which was so omnipresent in the original becomes a bystander in the sequel as the main characters come to terms with their own fallacies. Also, Farhan Akhtar’s character becomes the de facto lead of the movie whereas the original was a completely ensemble movie. Rock On 2 is slow, it stutters and it takes time to get into its own but it ends things on a good note and does not end up as a total wildfire.
One department in which Rock On 2 does better than the original movie is in the department of cinematography. Marc Koninckx shoots the scenic beauty of Meghalaya with great care and portrays the vivid beauty of the north east. The production design and costume design is good too. The concert scenes are not as organic as they were in the first part. This is in part due to the comparatively weak music. Rock On had a fantastic soundtrack and Rock On 2 has a below average soundtrack with no songs ending up as bonafide chartbusters.
Acting: Unfortunately the two actors who do the best work in Rock On 2, Shraddha Kapoor and Shashank Arora, have the least to do in the movie. Shraddha channels her Aashiqui 2 and Ek Villain roles and brings a mature subtlety to this part. Shashank Arora who was amazing in Titli and Brahman Naman continues his form and ends up becoming the Indian Pete Davidson. Farhan Akhtar is good, but there’s a sameness which has crept up in his acting recently. Arjun Rampal won a National award for Rock On and in this movie he shows that he has improved by leaps and bounds as a performer and as an actor. Purab Kohli is decent, Prachi Desai doesn’t have a lot to do, and Shahana Goswami is almost forced out of the sequel inspite of the fact that she was a true revelation in the first movie.
Conclusion: If you were expecting Rock On 2 to maintain the same essence of Rock On, then you should brace yourself for a few changes. The music here takes a backseat and the movie becomes a story about Farhan’s character rather than an entertaining ensemble movie. It takes a lot of time to set up the main story and get to its point, but the climax prevents this staid sequel from becoming a complete letdown. You can watch it for yourself and judge, or you can save your notes.
- Beautiful cinematography of Meghalaya
- Shraddha Kapoor and Shashank Arora
- The production design is top notch
- The below average soundtrack
- The chemistry of the ensemble cast goes cold
- Film takes long to find itself
- It is slow and stutters
- The concert scenes are not as organic as they were in Rock On