Review Marathi

Ashi Hi Ashiqui review: Sachin Pilgaonkar directs Abhinay Berde, Hemal Ingle in emotionally appealing film

Release Date: 01 Mar 2019 / Rated: U/A / 02hr 13min

Read in: Marathi

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Keyur Seta

If some portions were taken care of smartly, Ashi Hi Ashiqui would have been just a little more enjoyable.

Sachin Pilgaonkar directed a number of entertainers starring the late actor Laxmikant Berde in the 1980s and 1990s. Ashi Hi Banwa Banwi (1988) was one of the comedies that left you in splits. The Sachin-Laxmikant days of yore come flashing back while watching Pilgaonkar's latest rom-com Ashi Hi Ashiqui, which incidentally stars the late actor’s son Abhinay Berde.

This is not to say that Abhinay’s abhinay [acting] is like his father’s style. While Laxmikant was a over-the-top comedy specialist, the son is typical hero material. It is the fast-paced events in Ashi Hi Ashiqui with not much room for logical thinking that bring back memories of Laxmikant films.

We have Swayam (Abhinay Berde) and Amarja (Hemal Ingle) meeting for the first time at a party. They get talking and Swayam reveals that he likes Mona, a girl in his college. The police raid the party and circumstances force Swayam to spend the night at Amarja’s place in her bedroom. He runs away the next morning without Amarja’s parents even getting the whiff of it.

The above events might be difficult to accept at face value, but they are presented in an entertaining manner, so you go with the flow.

Abhinay displayed his talent in Satish Rajwade’s Ti Sadhya Kay Karte (2017) in which he played the younger version of Ankush Chaudhari. But in Ashi Hi Ashiqui he has shown that he also possesses the charm and enthusiasm needed for a main lead. Ingle, who makes her debut, is not just a pretty face. Their chemistry in the film is memorable.

Romantic comedies usually have a set template. A guy and girl meet. They fall in love, but an obstacle crops up. Finally, all is well in the end and they live happily ever after. There have been countless Hindi films following the same pattern.

Ashi Hi Ashiqui appears like just another rom-com. Few portions are also shot in Switzerland [the first Marathi film to be shot in the European country]. So, when Swayam and Amarja fall in love and their respective parents also give their approval to their alliance, you feel you know where the film is heading now and just wait for the conflict point to arrive.

The narrative, however, surprises you with an emotional twist out of nowhere and follows it with another in the end. The second one comes as a jolt, but in a good way as you wouldn’t have expected the film to turn out to be an emotional ride, especially after watching the trailers. It forces you to revisit some post-interval incidents all over again as you move out of the theatre feeling deeply for the couple.

Unfortunately, everything is not hunky dory in Ashi Hi Ashiqui, like its enjoyable title track sung by Sonu Nigam, who has sung all songs in the film. The film has a dry run in the middle where you wait for something major to take place, but nothing happens. A lot of time is taken to take the twist in the tale to its rightful, yet surprising conclusion.

A bucket list is used as a filler to ensure that the film runs for over two hours. Of all the antics the characters undertake, robbing a jewellery showroom is not only unnecessary, but devoid of any sense.

If these portions were taken care of smartly, Ashi Hi Ashiqui would have been just a little more enjoyable.


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