Ever since we have left Mumbai, the number of movies we have been able to watch is on a decline. Here, one needs to plan days in advance to catch a movie since all the good theaters run full all the time! As a consequence I guess, theaters don’t have the variable pricing option – whether one sits in the front row or the last, whether one sees an early morning show (by which I mean 10.30) or a prime time show, all tickets have standard rates – the only saving grace being its lower than the Mumbai prime time rate.
Having adjusted to the idiosyncrasies of this place, we managed to catch a number of new movies in the past few weeks. Just our luck that they happen to be the worst that the industry has churned out in the year.
On the goodwill of Milan Luthria’s ‘Once upon a time in Mumbai’ we went for ‘Once upon a time in Mumbai Dobara’, despite reviews which compared watching the movie to getting a root canal. I didn’t have much hope from Imran Khan but Akshay Kumar was such a disappointment! His dialogue delivery felt like he was being tortured to make him speak. The movie did have a decent storyline, however the characters lacked the depth that would make the audience connect with them. Add to it the mediocre soundtrack and the movie left one without making any perceptible impact. Considering that ‘Dirty Picture’ Milan Lutrhria’s previous blockbuster movie also left me with a feeling that there was a lot more they could do in terms of the story, Milan Luthria is definitely in my blacklist of directors.
Then there was “Chennai Express”. Hubby wanted to see it since it was a Rohit Shetty film and I wanted to know what all the furore was about. From the reviews we were prepared for a bad storyline and a bad music score, but what did pleasantly surprise me was the cinematography. Lovely arial shots of the train passing through Indian hinterland, of the waterfalls – most likely shot in Karnataka Western Ghats than anywhere in TN, of verdant valleys with sprawling lakes and of the ocean and bridge at Rameshwaram. Deepika of course managed to charm – lovely in her get up and effortlessly playing her character. The makers of the film did make some great decisions – the star cast and a successful director would automatically ensure a good run for the film. Plus releasing it during the holiday season when the only other option for viewers was OUATIM2, added to the movie raking in the moolah. However, despite a blockbuster hit the script was weak, skillfully take apart by vigil idiot here, and therefore Rohit Shetty is blacklisted for now. Keeping in mind his potential though I hope that there will be better stuff coming in future and the blacklist will be temporary.
And last but not the least ‘Zanjeer’ (Remake)! In the trailers Ram Charan impressed me with his attitude and it seemed like he was capable enough to take on Amitabh Bachan’s ‘angry young man’ act, and despite bad reviews, I thought they have a good script – how bad can it be ! Apoorva Lakhia went out of his way to prove to me just how bad it could be!! From using ‘raghupati raghava raja ram’ as the background score for the hero’s entry to the selection of Mahi Gill to play the infamous “Mona Darling”, everything about the movie wants me to yell “Why???! Why would you want to do that ??!!” The actors, Ram Charan, Prakash Raj, Sanjay Dutt, and Atul Kulkarni do try to do justice to their roles – they are just not given an opportunity. Dialogues picked up from the original do not sit well in the current context. The hero is not brooding enough or angry enough – seems well adjusted unless he’s hitting somebody. Sanjay Dutt looks great as Sher Khan, but lackluster dialogues leave his character without any real background or context. All the creative license that the director has taken with the original script fails to create a comprehensive plot. Why would an NRI girl fall in love with an ACP when they have nothing in common? What benefit did Jaydev’s investigations have in helping the hero or the plot? Tardy editing adds to the woes – one can see actors tripping over their feet while getting out of vehicles, identify wooden partitions set up for the sole purpose of being shown splintering when the goons are thrown against it, hear the dialogues of random talk that could be muted or cut, see side actors making grimaces irrelevant to context. I just want to get a memory purge, so that I forget that I ever saw this movie. Apoorva Lakhia -definitely blacklisted – for even wanting to put his hands on such a great script, on top of it displaying a complete lack of reverence to it, and mis-utilizing such great acting resources available.
I need to get myself some “Sudh Desi Romance” to get over this debacle. Missed it last week due to lack of tickets. Need to rectify my error this week 😀