November 18, 2007
Cast: Ranbir Kapoor, Sonam Kapoor, Salman Khan, Rani Mukherji, Zohra Sehgal.
How is it, that I watch a entire movie, and still prefer Salman's 10 minutes to Ranbir's 2 hours??? How is it that I prefer Rani's 1/2 hour to Sonam's 2 hours?
Lets try to analyze why, beginning with the story. We find Raj (Ranbir), a singer, comes to town, and meets Gulab (Rani) a prostitute- and they become friends. Keep in mind, the town, and for that matter the entire movie is a fairy-land-type set of peacock blues and greens- looks like Mr. Bhansali has been to the Venetian (a casino in Las Vegas, for those who have kept away from the western United States) too many times and under the influence, has coughed up its replica in his movie. That would have been fine, but it is BORING to see the same backdrops for 2 hours! If I wanted to do that, I'd go see a play! Whatever.
Raj meets Sakina (Ms Kapoor, who btw is NOT his sister- different Kapoors, for those of you (again), who are far removed from Bollywood movie family histories). He is in love- she is too: but with someone else. Sakina is waiting for Iman (Salman) to come back to her- he is out of town for a year, on some business we are told nothing about. Raj tries every trick in the book to attract Sakina (even kick-boxing exercises- weird) and she begins to give in- a little- when Iman comes back. he leaves with Sakina, Raj acts loopier than ever, end of story.
Dear Mr. Bhansali:
The casting for the movie was excellent, including (but not limited to):
1- You did well in getting Salman as Iman- his act of the ardent older lover is almost absurd in its ease- his gentle flirting with Sakina's grandmother is a splash of adorableness and humor- his romansing of Sakina is completely ethereal- he justifies himself as romance personified in the limited time provided to him ably and well.
2- Ms Mukherji is beautiful- the most elegant prostitute on the planet, I am certain. She is looking prettier than ever here, and you are to be congratulated for it. Her wit sparkles- mmm but hang on a minute- she, for at least me, manages to overshadow the heroine completely.
3- Zohra is a grandmother I would have liked to have- we need more Zohra in Bollywood! Thank you for recognizing this need.
But also, dear Mr. Bhansali:
1- Vegas casino replicas should not serve as movie sets for the entire duration of a film.
2- Kickboxing isn't a dance form. Ranbir just appears idiotic when he does that- makes me fear he wants to bop Sakina on the nose.
3- Please make sure you have a story before you make a movie. Filling a film with songs makes it a musical, but even musicals must have a more than a wafer-thin storyline to give them substance.
We thank you for your patience,
Apni East Indian Company
Aside: Ranbir's voice reminded me of Sanjay Dutt's. He also bears a slight facial likeness to Mr. Dutt from the late 70s-early 80s- did anyone else note that?