Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Goodbye, dear blog.

Dear reader,

I have moved my blog to wordpress (heartranjan.wordpress.com). Wordpress seemed to give me better options for my blog.

This blog has been so much to me. I've spent days when I did nothing all day, and just spent them reading blogs, and putting new ones up.

This blog was my only source of hope during depressing days and when I had doubts about myself.

But kya karein? End of the day, I'm a human being. Aur insaan bewafaa hota hai.

See you on my new blog.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Why Dhobi Ghat might not be a hit.

I was listening to some opinions on Dhobi Ghat, and I was intrigued.

"Chu**** picture hai, saala. Yeh Aamir Khan ko kya ho gaya hai?"

"3 idiots jaisi picture banana chahiye yaar. Is picture mein kya hai?"

"Apni biwi ke chakkar mein pagal ho gaya hai Aamir Khan".

And most of them haven't even watched the movie. I remember something that had happened during the release of Sanjay Leela Bhansali's 'Black'. The film was shot in black and white, and the dialogues were in English, and had no songs. Even though the film reeked of pseudo-intellectualism, and had a very insensitive portrayal of the treatment of the child, when people came out of the hall, they'd nod their heads, and say, "Kya picture hai, boss. Oscar milna chahiye."

Dhobi Ghat is shot in colour, has no zany camera angles, and the characters converse in normal language, generously giving out gaalis to each other. It's a subtle story, and hence, when the heroine is sad, it doesn't start to rain. And when the heroine is happy, she doesn't put her head out of the car and scream at passersby in joy. There is no 'climax' as such. It's a narrative of the four characters, and how many times do we look up at the sky and cry? Or fall in love when we see a girl dancing in the rain?

The problem with being brought up in a tradition of loud, song-and-dance filled portrayals in films, is that we 'expect' some things from a film. And now that there is a semblance of a new wave in Hindi films, we expect them to be 'artistic' or 'intelligent' I thought 'Oye Lucky, lucky oye' was an intelligently made movie, but no, it was a story of a thief, how can that be intelligent? An intelligent story is one in which there is a man dying of cancer and he has to finish his painting before his death, while hiding from his family members that he has cancer. That is intelligent!

We are obsessed with 'understanding' everything. When we see a painting, the first thing we try to do is to try to 'understand' what the artist is trying to say. So we look for hidden meanings, and symbolism, completely ignoring the fact that it could also be about the use of colours, the strokes, the composure. But these are simple, mundane things. There has to be a complex, heart-wrenching inner meaning, laden with allegorical references, and then we'll go, "Ah...kya picture hai, boss!"

When people did not understand 'Inception', they went to watch it again. But a slight confusion in 'Dhobi Ghaat' makes it a chu**** picture. That's because it's alright for an English movie to confuse us, but a Hindi picture should be swachh, crystal clear, and understood by all.

'Dhobi Ghat' is a simple, honest film. Trust me, even a ten year old can understand the story. There are no concealed meanings, and nothing is arty-farty about it. it is the story of four people in Mumbai, an artist, a dhobi, an America returned investment banker, and an artist, and how their lives meet over a few incidents. Watch it for the superb performances of Prateik Babbar Kriti Malhotra and Monica Dogra.

Instead of going by reviews and opinions of others, challenge your taste. Go watch the movie. You will love, or you will dislike it. But you will appreciate that there are people who are trying something different in Hindi cinema. So what if they get their husbands to finance it? I am sure the film would not have been made if Kiran Rao was married to Chunkey Pandey, and there is no harm in him producing the movie. Really.

Take a risk. There are hundreds of dhinchaak, masala films coming anyway.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

'Turning 30' is extremely shitty

If you saw the trailer, you would think it is a smart, urban movie that talks openly about issues like growing up, sex, and other things. It's got Gul Panag, who does not generally dance around the trees. You buy the ticket, and two minutes into the start of the movie, you realise you have been swindled.

Turning 30 has got 'Low budget' written all over it. Not that that is my grudge against it, but the film is shot so amateurishly, it seems like the final project of the 2010 Direction batch at FTII, Pune. Where do I begin?

Firstly, the film is shot in English, but has been dubbed in Hindi, which makes it look like one of those crappy Hannah Montana shows in Hindi. Add to that, extremely unoriginal writing in the form of the characters. There are the friends who shop, bitch, and apply make up. There is the mother that keeps nagging her daughter to get married. Then, there is the evil boss.

I seriously could not take more than 5 minutes of the movie and tuned out after that. I stood up, turned back to see the lighted, frustrated faces of another hundred guys, and then walked out for five minutes. When I came back into the hall, nothing seemed to have changed at all. It's that bad a movie.

The story of a woman who is approaching 30, has an advertising job in which her boss gives her hell, and a boyfriend who is facing pressure at home. The woman's life falls into pieces when the guy dumps her and her work life also gets screwed up.

Now, the problem with the film is that, while it is trying to show women in a progressive light, it fails miserably due to the plot. The woman is heartbroken when the man dumps her for a hot, young girl. She tries to seduce him when he comes home to pick up his stuff, and even asks him the very original question, "Why? Is she better in bed?" By this time, your brain has gone into snooze mood, and you seriously don't give a rat's ass if he takes out a gun and shoots the ceiling fan, and they both die, and meet in heaven.

Gul Panag, who is generally watchable, tries her best to hold her own, but the ship begins to sink because every other thing in the movie sucks. The other actors are all either cliched, or irritating. If you are with a partner and want to end the relationship, please take him/her with you to the movie. Once its over, say you loved the movie so much, you want to watch it again sometime soon.

You will not hear from that person again. Take that in writing.