A certain breed of film-makers in Bollywood believe in making films solely because it has a good story to tell, a couple of lessons to teach and some social messages to pass. Nagesh Kukunoor would be a proud member of that club and he sure would be satisfied when he has to look around at the kind of movies being made. If Iqbal talked about a deaf and mute boy chasing his dreams to be a apart of Indian cricket squad, Dor brought together two women from different backgrounds and how they emotionally come to each other’s rescue. Sure he has had his share of mistakes but then who does not make mistakes.
Aashayein, although had weak promos, was something I had decided to watch when I first saw the teaser on television. The reason being Kukunoor‘s storytelling and secondly the name of the film. Aashayein translates to hopes and the movie provides loads of it. The film opens with Rahul (John) shown betting on a India vs. New Zealand match putting all of his chick Nafisa‘s (Sonal) savings on the line. This is where we are introduced to his addiction to smoking. A big win and a couple of celebrations later we come to know that Rahul is suffering from cancer that arises due to smoking and has just three months to live. Not being able to bear the fact that his girlfriend has to suffer due to his condition, Rahul packs off to this particular hospice where people basically spend the last moments of their life.
Here Rahul meets other important characters of the film, who have their own problems and issues and the only common thing in all their lives is the fact that they are all dying. Padma (Anaitha) is a seventeen year old girl who is full of hatred and wants to experience love. Parthasarthi (Girish Karnad) is another resident who has lost his voice due to throat cancer and a veteran natural actor that Girish is, he pulls off his role without effort.
Farida Jalal plays the part of an HIV positive woman named Madhu and it is through her character that Kukunoor wishes to clear certain wrong notions to do with AIDS. Govinda (Ashwin Chitale) is a kid who becomes a spiritual savior for Rahul and adds more dimension to his motionless life. The screen is rekindled everytime Rahul interacts with any of these characters who share the hospice with him.
A simple movie like Aashayein that does not boast of a big budget, has lesser known actors, and isn’t noisy is always walloped and rated less by the brainless critics. By the way these are the same critics who chose to praise a trash like My Name is Khan. Anyway, Aashayein is an uncomplicated film and does not bore you. Watch it for its lively moments and make sure you catch the movie before it is forced to leave the theatres. And that is going to happen soon as it has already been declared a flop.
Rating : 3.5/5