Rockstar was the only Hindi movie I wanted to watch badly in 2011. And with much enthusiasm, despite reports of a sagging second half, I set out last weekend to watch it in Eros in Mumbai. Before anything else, it was a pleasure to not watch the movie in a multiplex – it’s been at least six years since I did so! The screen was huge. I was prepared to be blown away – with amazing visuals, and most of all, what I’d come for, Rahman’s music on dolby surround sound (which was surprisingly non-functional in the cinema, I think).

As for the movie – I’ll not talk about the script or the wooden doll Nargis Fakhri (why, Imtiaz Ali – she destroyed the very soul of the movie). To me, the movie did a brilliant job – thanks to Ali, a zillion times from the Rahman fan – bringing the god-awesome-brilliant-out-of-the-world songs to life on screen through Ranbir Kapoor. And is this the guy who was unbearable in Saanwariya all those years ago? Good lord, hasn’t he matured as an actor – this might very well be the break that he got hints of at Wake Up Sid. Thanks to him, the songs sprang to life, dripped with agony, pain, exuding promise, happiness, steeped in anguish, anger, oh-world-up-yours-ness. After watching Sakkarakatti, I realized how directors could mutilate songs on screen (remember the zombies in Chinamma Chilakamma) and make you relive horrific memories the next time you listen to them (it took me a few months to get over those images). Ali has simply made me cherish each song even more, feel the emotion in each song that Mohit Chauhan and Rahman create. After the movie, I became an even bigger fan of Kun Faaya Kun – the beautiful lights, the mosque, the haunting music on screen – love. At 3.15am, a few hours after watching the movie, I played it on the iPod on bed, lay with my eyes closed and – for the first time even though I’ve heard it before – moved to a different plane; one where Rahman’s voice felt as if they were ripples on water; the first bit on the harmonium with Javed Ali’s and Rahman’s voice felt like heaven; and when you realize how the divine sound awoke the music within JJ, Mohit Chauhan’s voice carries a meaning of its own.

And The Dichotomy of Fame – gave me a pleasant shock when I saw Shammi Kapoor playing the shehnai (yes, I could have made the link when he was introduced as a shehnai player) – but it became even more beautiful when Ranbir could so powerfully emote to show his anguish, pain and annoyance – and what, beautifully, brought out the best music in him. Aur Ho, a song I usually paid little attention, became a haunting portrayal of confusion, and knowing what those mysterious lines the lady sings are, makes it lovelier. Sadda Haq became powerful, and I was screaming with joy in the cinema hall. I love Sheher Mein even more, more deeply in love with Phir Se, and must seriously work on editing Tango for Taj my ringtone.

I’m so much more in love with the soundtrack that I don’t mind sitting through the movie again and enduring the pouting woman’s face, just to relive every song and watch Ranbir bring it to life. What more could a Rahman fan – and a true music lover – want?