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CHANDIGARH KARE AASHIQUI - A casual yet important film, wrongly promoted as a Comedy. (Review by Bobby Sing)

10 Dec, 2021 | Movie Reviews / 2021 Releases

Once again, coming up with a subject Ayushmann Khurrana is known for, Chandigarh Kare Aashiqui is both an important and a casual, careless film at the same time. It’s important as it finds the courage to conceive a rare, mainstream star-studded film on such a not much-talked-about subject. And careless as it purposefully exploits the premise in a light comic manner, promoting as a comedy, yet again relying on Punjabi music and backdrop, blindly sticking to the latest formula of Hindi cinema.

Frankly, it seems the writers, directors, and production houses in Mumbai have lost the guts to make a dedicated Hindi film and cannot even think of making their projects without any forced reference of Punjab, Punjabi, the language, and songs borrowed from the repertoire of worldwide hit Punjabi songs. (This time they even add Hindi subtitles when the local Punjabi lingo is used in its dialogues.) 

Keeping the title-discussion for the later part of the review, Chandigarh Kare Aashiqui begins well, focusing on the entertainment and glamour quotient as a fresh, breezy film exploring a novel theme. Briskly progressing towards its core twist, the declaration of Vaani Kapoor being a trans-woman comes fast (which is no more a secret for the public) and the narrative soon turns into an intense emotional journey with regular comic touches thrown at intervals.

It’s from here onwards that the film strictly starts operating on a superficial level with many contradictions and an unclear presentation in terms of society and the families dealing with the unexpected issue. Particularly, the characters of the two sisters and the father remain the most absurdly written characters, just to raise some laughter in a cheap manner. Moreover, the supporting cast is just okay and the way, the writers come up with their quick solutions is quite unconvincing in a typical filmy manner. Also, the climax yet again tries something highly cliché and routine, finding an easy, predictable path to end it all.

On the other hand, despite being a casual take on the issue, the film certainly deserves to be seen for Vaani instead of Ayushmann. Personally, I found nothing different in Ayushmann’s performance moving ahead of his earlier films, other than the amazing hard work on his body. A Chandigarh boy in real life, Ayushmann plays it well but probably for the first time, he falls short of the female lead in his film. 

In clear words, Chandigarh Kare Aashiqui entirely belongs to Vaani, who not only needs to be praised for accepting such a risky, unconventional role but also is worthy of big applause for playing it brilliantly taking a big leap forward from anything she has done to date. She looks stunning, is simply a revelation and the entire film largely works because of her much more than Ayushmann.

Another merit of the project is its glossy, colourful look and a few catchy numbers (Sachin-Jigar) that again borrow a lot from Punjabi language and music. And that brings me back to the title of the film, which has been questionably credited as the brainchild of either the director Abhishek Kapoor or Ayushmann in a few online articles.

No doubt Ayushmann must have been aware of it and might have suggested the same, but the title, in reality, has been taken from one of the most famous, cult songs of Punjabi music with the opening verse as “Chandigarh Kare Aashiqui, Munda Jattan Da Jalandharon Aake”. Originally sung by the veteran artist Hardeep Singh in the late 80s-early 90s era of Doordarshan, the song again got famous after a few years, when Jassi Sidhu (then B-21 group) released its remixed track in the UK. As added information, the UK music albums used to reach the Indian market unofficially till the early 2000s. And we officially released Jassi Sidhu’s first album in India titled “Ishq Wich Jogi” at Nupur Audio (with all new songs) around 2003, when I was working with the company as an artist/creative consultant.
Sidhu later also released more versions of the cult track in different albums released by another company. Originally composed by Varinder Bachchan and penned by Madan Jalandhari, the song remains the representative track featuring Chandigarh in its opening verse, later inspiring many more similar songs in the last two decades. The film soundtrack also features a version sung by Jassi Sidhu, which ironically became more famous than the original sung by Hardeep Singh.
Coming back to the movie, though Chandigarh Kare Aashiqui is a bold and important film that begins a conversation on a lesser talked about issue, it still remains a forceful attempt intentionally exploiting the crucial theme as a comedy. Following a bland, one-note kind of story progression, it unarguably deserves to be seen for Vaani Kapoor alone but the film is not a comedy as wrongly projected by its trailer. So, you might get disappointed if you are expecting it to be a laugh-riot. 
On the whole, it’s a significant, path-breaking film that misses the opportunity of becoming a milestone cinema. Hence, watch it as a must (not recommended with the family), but with limited expectations, to be honest.
Rating : 3 / 5
(Released in Theaters)

Tags : CHANDIGARH KARE AASHIQUI Review by Bobby Sing at bobbytalkscinema.com, New Hindi Movies Reviews by Bobby Sing, New Bollywood Films Reviews by Bobby Sing, Hindi path-breaking films, Rare Hindi film on Transgender.
10 Dec 2021 / Comments ( 4 )

Good review. Thank you

Bobby Sing

Thanks for visiting and writing in Poornima.


After a long time enjoyed the music... Keda ye attraction reminded me of Gangs of Wasseypur songs.

and yes rightly said...Casual yet Important subject... But i feel even if its promoted as comic totally justified from there point of view...the important thing comes out as shock for the viewers as film progresses...and then towards end we are left to decide weather the film succeeded to clear our doubts and thinking.

Bobby Sing

Thanks for sharing your views Mustafa.
Keep Visiting and Writing in.

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