The Price of Being a Rockstar

Greatness comes with grief…


Rockstar has been my all time favourite. I have watched it so many times that if Imtyaz Ali contests a Global Rockstar Quiz, I’d beat him hands down. The movie has etched in my conscience like Paleolithic drawings on Al Tamira cave walls. ( Okay, I need to work on similes, I get that ) 
The first time I saw it, I was sitting between my parents, and the first scene was the song Aur Ho, where Ranbir Kapoor was, presumably, on viagra and his sole ambition in life was to suck all the lipgloss from Nargis’ lips. He strangely reminded me of Cell from Dragon Ball Z. 

A few scenes later, Ranbir Kapoor was coercing Nargis Fakri to hug him. 

I instantly switched to ABP News so that the atmosphere could be homely again. They were showing Saas Bahu aur Saazish, my mother’s favourite, and my father settled to reading the latest scam updates from the news tickers. 

 I decided Rockstar was an adult movie, and it should come with a statutory warning that it involves a character who wants to absorb epithelium from Heroine’s mouth. 

I was 13 back then. I’d never faced a heartbreak. I still watched Kitresu on Hungama. 

I saw the movie again when I was 16. Life was different at 16. I had loved and lost, so many times that I began to feel like a loser, who always gets to play hero’s sidekick’s sidekick in a movie and whose story doesn’t signify at all.
There’s a scene in the movie, the conversation between Khatana Bhai and Ranbir Kapoor, where Khatana Bhai says – Toote hue dil se hi sangeet nikalta hai, jab dil ki lagti hai na, tukde tukde hote hain, tab aati hai jhankaar. [ Music erupts from a broken heart. When your heart gets screwed and ravaged and ripped into pieces, then comes the clink. ]

Ranbir Kapoor, in the next scene, is clutching a Cinthol soap, staring at the posters of rockstars on his wall, and he realizes how agonising and traumatic the lives of those great artists had been. An epiphany strikes him. And me

A Broken Heart – I wrote in my Maths copy in big bold fonts. Then, I drew a heart cracked in half. I underlined the phrase several times and began dreaming of a tragic incident where my girlfriend dies of cancer or something and then I turn into this great author who’s signing 100,000 copies for Amazon preorders, a rolex around his left wrist. 

Only that I, like Ranbir Kapoor, didn’t  critically analyse the pros and cons of a tragedy. 

In the end, Ranbir Kapoor does become a rockstar, but the movie leaves a big question. The question of opportunity cost. 
It’s true that grief either makes you great, or sends you to your grave. Robert Frost suffered from constant heartwrenching tragedies all his life. Sylvia Plath committed suicide at 30. Oscar Wilde was labelled homosexual in Victorian Era. Fitzgerald never saw the success of The Great Gatsby. 

But, now, the ever burning question is – Is suffering worth the greatness? 

If you’re given a choice, what would you choose? 

Id rather sit in a cheap armchair, sipping  coffee and holding my girlfriend tight in my arms than brood alone in my imported rocking chair with the rolex around my left wrist. 

I want to be great, but I’d rather be a Noah. Because, for me, an Allie is too important to lose. 

4 thoughts on “The Price of Being a Rockstar

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