Rock on!

I recently watched “Rock on”. I know that its kinda late cos’ the movie released a year back or sumthin’, who cares. I got a good feedback from friends who listen to good music, so I wanted to see what all the fuss was about. Great storyline, script and acting. I think the movie is under-rated, but then, what would one expect anyway from a crowd feeding off ITEM NUMBERS and PHOREN DANCERS.

rock-on_1bThe movie starts with the Glory days of a band called MAGIC (Aptly named cos’ Arjun Rampal’s character creates magic with his hands, while Farhan Akhtar does the same with his voice!? I know!!). Then, reality kicks in with present day, each member busy with their own life, with a certain bad experience that left them crippled and broke the band apart.

Arjun, the lead guitarist, now runs a small music shop and performs at small gatherings. He has a kid now and is struggling to run his family with his wife, who was once a groupie of the band. Purab is an associate of some sort, not sure what. Anyways, Luke Kenny, the keyboardist and bassist, now makes jingles for commercials, with ANU MALIK, which he hates. Hehe.. And Farhan finally finished his MBA and now stuck in the corporate world, married to his job.

The reunion sowed its seeds when Purab happened to meet Farhans wife, who btw had no idea of her husband’s past, through a business deal involving her friend. She invited him and asked to get the gang along for Farhan’s Suprise B’day Party. And the REAL story begins.

The flashbacks were well thought-out. The reason for the break up was very real, the album contract, the record deal, the selling out of the band, the disagreement, the fight, the last words.. etc etc… It kinda reflects on the reason most bands break up, cos’ they eventually have to make a lot of compromises owing the record companies’ want to make the maximum profit. I think this is as real as any Bollywood flick would get. I think that budding musicians, at least in India where promotions are few and too far off, should watch this movie and see beyond the story. Because it is the simple disagreements that break bands apart, unmet promises, unfulfilled dreams and dying hopes. To really make it big in a country like India, and still be able to make the kind of music they want to make, THAT is a successful rock band.

I love music of any genre, but rock is ultimate because it stands against something and that is what makes it unique. I know our Local bands have a lot of talent, creativity and melody, Hell, I wouldn’t mind paying for their music if MP3s weren’t so damn convenient. Had it been the 90’s, I would’ve totally paid 45/- for a cassette. I just wish that with current advances in the internet and technology, we could use that to our advantage to showcase that potential to the world. If the NUMA-NUMA guy can get millions of viewers, why can’t our Rock-bands?


9 Responses to “Rock on!”

  1. August 14, 2009 at 1:51 pm

    Hmmm… sadly and embarrassingly…for one thing, I don’t understand Hindi very well, have the movie come with english sub-titles… if it does, I’d make it a point to watch… I dont know music well, I can’t sing but I do appreciate good music.. You made it (the movie) sound so interesting

  2. August 14, 2009 at 2:33 pm

    Let me add it to my list of movies-to-see which is already a mile long.

  3. August 14, 2009 at 6:50 pm

    Guess Rock On seems to be a pretty decent film…. so far This is Spinal Tap is my favourite band film. Like someone on the music blogosphere has said.. bands need to make money not from their music but because of their music… errr hope it makes sense..

    From personal experience a band i was in broke up because of the prize money [very2 little] for best original song which we got… We had to decide how to use it. Two wanted to buy beer with it and the rest of us who were hungry by the end of the show wanted food… beer members won coz it was their pad+gear we practiced/used…Our song was on the benefits of headbanging..

  4. 4 NotGood
    August 14, 2009 at 9:17 pm

    @Rita: English subtitles can be downloaded from the internet, although you need to have a divx format of the movie for the subs to work. Technical stuff apart, the movie has Hindi and English dialogues, simple enough for even me to understand! And since when did people stop watching Hindi movies just cos’ they don’t understand the language.. lolzz.. I remember the days we watched “Qayamat se..” “Maine Pyaar Kiya” etc without understanding a single word.. 😛 and don’t get me started on the Hindi Soaps..

    @Aduhi: No.. Dont add it to that list, add it to your Movies-to-see-first-from-my-list-of-movies-which-is-already-a-mile-long list! hehe

    @Blind: “Bands need to make money not from their music but because of their music..” hmm… makes exactly as much sense as a fish on wheels.. 😛 Great that you were in a band once, you must cherish the experience.. I’ve always dreamt of performing but never could muster enough courage.. 😛

  5. 5 makima
    August 18, 2009 at 11:28 am

    We regularly perform 2 of the songs at office events. I wonder who the real musicians are. I particularly like the drummer

  6. 6 NotGood
    August 19, 2009 at 12:07 am

    @Makima: I think Farhan Akhtar did his own vocals.. the director of the movie and son of the legendary Javed Akhtar. Maybe talent does run in the familia, what with his mom being Shabana Azmi and stuff.. Rather suprising he didn’t turn out to be a bum.. 😛 And Rampal does look like he actually played the guitar, that or he’s a really, really good actor.. but then, with technology nowadays, they’d make you believe anything!

  7. August 22, 2009 at 9:14 pm

    Hmm.. sounds interesting. Would love to watch it, with the subtitle of course :-). I cried several times watching “Kuch kuch hota hai”. Yup, you’re right. Waiting for the day when our Local artistes could get a chance to the outside world, and the day when we can have REAL concerts with good sound engineers. Come’on Musicians (@makima), do something!! We’ve got so many talented people out there. And why is our Film industry still zero? 😦

  8. 8 Makima
    August 24, 2009 at 12:55 pm

    Com’on Mimi, we played at the Zorock concert and you didn’t even show up.

    And oh, we played the Rock On song at Palace Grounds last saturday. There was hardly a crowd but you can’t deny we played at the same venue that Roger Waters, Bryan Adams, Joe Satriani, Mark Knopfler, Scorpions, Iron Maiden, Megadeth etc etc played 😀

  9. 9 NotGood
    August 25, 2009 at 12:19 am

    @Mi-ni-mi: Im surprised that off-beat movies such as these are not so popular back home, considering that fact that people even go to the length of translating lame Serials such as Kyunki saas.., Kasauti into the local language. Bollywood isn’t that bad now, its just that they still can’t break out of the stereotyped Hero-Heroine Love stories because majority of the audience demands it. Movies like Rock on, Page 3, etc are pretty much worth watching.

    @Makima: Zorock and Roger Waters, Bryan Adams, Joe Satriani, Mark Knopfler, Scorpions, Iron Maiden, Megadeth.. hmm.. Btw, whats it like performing at Palace Grounds? And who cares about the crowd, Rock is all about the music, or is it? hehe.

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