Just back from OSO, the much touted blockbuster featuring SRK. Of course, I went more on the reputation of Farah Khan whose “Main hoon na” I enjoyed tremendously. I’m a sucker for serious cinema, and have fought with guys over “entertainment” vs “meaning”. No prizes for guessing which side of the debate I am on, generally. Still, I liked Main Hoon Na.
Farah Khan, above all, has lived up to my expectations. This is an absolutely delicious movies, with an overload of masala, and total disdain for subtlety.
There is lot that has been written about the movie, so I’ll not bother reviewing it again, but if anyone is really looking for a review that I think expresses what I felt about the movie, here it is (who thought something like this will come from PFC?).
In the interval, I was thinking about another movie which has turned its gaze onto Bollywood: Ketan Mehta’s “Oh Darling Yeh Hai India”. Ketan Mehta is a very talented director, and he has tried to laugh at the excesses of Bollywood, by creating a story that’s a pukka Bollywood masala. But, here lies the difference. Ketan Mehta didn’t believe in Bollywood. Farah Khan, on the other hand, has made fun of all and sundry, in OSO, and yet, Bollywood walks out as a winner — an unabashed school of film-making, of dream-making rather, that has its own aesthetics. Where Farah succeeds, and where Ketan failed miserably, despite being a much better director, is in this “acceptance” of Bollywood on its own terms.
Love it or hate it, but watch it. I’m no SRK fan, quite the opposite, but if there was one role that was ever written for him, its this one. And for all his shortcomings, energy was never his problem. This is a movie that cannot be given stars, because there is no story to speak of, nothing to take away, nothing to rant and rave about. But all said and done, Farah has done what she set out to do. Hats off to her for that alone.
And last, but not the least, Deepika Paducone. She has looked gorgeous. I cannot remember any other debut in recent times, that can come close. Of course, she didn’t have to act (no one had to act, with the exception of Shreyas Talpade, who has an amazing potential). But she has looked just stunning, and carried herself with the poise that is surprising for someone who’s just entering the arena.
Don’t watch the movie if you’ve a your own concepts of what “good cinema” should be and should not be. This is not about good cinema. This is about philmigiri. This is a tribute to an era when the silver screen was silver. Only tributes are rarely this frivolous. But then, this is Farah Khan we’re talking about. I, for one, absolutely loved it.
[PS: I’ve completely abandoned my claim to being a connoisseur]