Ishq Vishk Rebound review: This rebound romance is confused, frivolous and doesn’t give any closure | Bollywood - Hindustan Times

Ishq Vishk Rebound review: This rebound romance is confused, frivolous and doesn’t give any closure

Jun 21, 2024 02:51 PM IST

Ishq Vishk Rebound review: Is it better than Ishq Vishk. No! Is it bad? Not really! It’s an easy-breezy watch that’s fun but frivolous at the same time.

Ishq Vishk Rebound review: Love triangles and complicated love stories between friends-turned-lovers has been quite the popular trope in Bollywood. Kuch Kuch Hota Hai remains the OG. And then of course Ishq Visk followed in 2003 launching the charming Shahid Kapoor, who danced his way into audience’s hearts. (Also Read: Shenaz Treasury regrets not properly harnessing popularity from Ishq Vishk: ‘I fell in love, moved to Thailand')

Ishq Vishk Rebound review: The film has a lot of growing up to do.
Ishq Vishk Rebound review: The film has a lot of growing up to do.

Two decades later, we have its spiritual sequel, Ishq Vishk Rebound, and though it tries really hard to stay afloat, the film meanders more than you can handle. In fact, there’s a line in the film that says, ‘Clarity ka raasta confusion se guzarta hai’... I wish it could be said for the film’s storyline and climax. After so much confusions, complications and complexities that all the main characters go through, there’s barely any clarity that we as audiences can derive from it. Even as all the protagonists have seemingly got a closure, something feels amiss in this rebound romance.

Ishq Vishk Rebound meanders

The Gen Z romcom, or at least that’s what it wants us to believe, starts with three best friends — Raghav (Rohit Saraf), Sanya (Pashmina Roshan) and Sahir (Jibraan Khan), and to turn this trio into a foursome, Riya (Naila Grewal) joins at some point. As Raghav tells us that while he fell in love with books and writing scripts, Sanya and Sahir fall for each other. But what happens when the breakup happens, and Raghav ends up becoming the fall-back guy, who’s trapped between his besties, and accidently kisses his best friend’s ex-girlfriend? He is definitely a better friend than a lover as he risks his own relationship with Riya in a bid to help Sanya heal from her breakup. While Sahir is oblivious to this new blooming romance, Riya, too, just vanishes as the script no longer needed her, only to suddenly appear post interval.

Doesn't keep you engaged

At 106 minutes, Ishq Vishk rebound is one of the shortest films in the recent times, but even then it doesn’t engage you like you would want to be in a romcom. Dharmadhikari has co-written the story with four other writers — Dr. Vinay Chhawal, Vaishali Naik, Ketan Pedgaonkar and Akarsh Khurana, and perhaps that’s why at places you feel every writer has written each character. The patchy screenplay makes the storyline look disjointed at times, and you miss the flow. As for comedy, I can’t recall a single joke that left me laughing out loud. There might be a scene or two that are funny, but that’s about it.

For a Gen Z film, Ishq Vishk Rebound surprisingly doesn’t refresh the template, sticking to the same vocabulary with characters saying the same old, cliched lines. The story tries to show the confusions and indecisiveness that modern couples go though in their relationships, but keeps it very superficial. I would have liked if in today’s day and age, we are told why and how Sanya got over Sahir so soon and fell for Raghav? What I do like in the film is that despite being focused on the generation where a breakup means moving on and kissing another person in a matter of days, the film does enter slightly more mature territories. For instance, the portion where Raghav tells Sanya the importance of letting go of things and preferring conversations over confrontations.

The performances

Rohit Saraf as the ‘Chaddi buddy who is permanent kebab mein haddi’ holds the films entirely on his shoulders. He has his highs and lows, but doesn’t give you any chance to complain. He is quite a show stealer with his charming screen presence and swift dance moves. Pashmina Roshan gets the maximums screen time and honestly, after a point, you realise she doesn’t bring anything new to the table. While most of the attention is styling like a typical Bollywood starlet wearing bralettes in most of the scenes, I couldn’t look past her dialogue delivery and expressions that often reminded me of Kim Sharma in Mohabbatein.

For a debut act, she is decent, though there’s a lot of polishing that is required. Jibraan Khan makes you swoon with his chiseled abs and muscles, and even in the acting department, he impresses. Even with a limited screen time, he manages to shine and remind you of his K3G performance. Nailla, who I felt is the strongest when it comes to acting, was unfortunately forgotten for most part in the film. Her character arch is solid, and there is a sense of maturity and calmness she brings to her screen presence, yet we see her very less.

Appealing side stories

While the main characters in the film remain in focus — sometimes making a point and sometimes having the most pointless conversations — I really liked how to narrative weaves in the complex yet interesting backstories of their families. While Sanya admits to brushing off most of her problems under the carpet in the garb of her divorced parents, there comes a beautiful scene when after a breakup, she is sharing a glass of dark rum with her mother (Supriya Pilgaonkar) sitting on a bench and gazing at the moon.

In another household, Sahir gives-in to the pressure of his ex-army dad to win the Sword of Honour at the cadet camp, due to which he even let go of his relationship. Though at one point, he does confront his father and stop him from being unreasonable, that scene, felt, needed way more depth and impact. Meanwhile, Raghav has always seen his parents deeply in love with each other and playing funny games, and it’s only when he is accomplishing his dreams in life, he realises that all that is actually a part of some sort of couple’s therapy. In fact, these side stories look more appealing to me than the romance unfolding on screen.

In conclusion

Is Ishq Vishk Rebound better than Ishq Vishk. No! Is it bad? Not really! To simply put, it’s an easy-breezy watch that’s fun and frivolous at the same time. As Pashmina says to Rohit in one of the scenes, ‘Your characters are mature, but you still have a lot of growing up to do’. This is exactly what I’d like to tell the whole team of Ishq Vishk Rebound — your story is mature and intense, but there’s still a lot that can make it convincing and clearer.

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