the hard-hitting realist movie maker is back. it is ironic that his movie lives in a dreamworld of his own making.
this is the guy who made ‘chandni bar’. which actually leaves you gasping at the brutality of life. then came ‘page 3’. which captured the very essence of the socialites. it appeared as though a new sense of film-making would soon eclipse an industry that revels in dreams. especially dreams with srk in them.
‘satta’, ‘corporate’, ‘traffic signal’ started a slippery slope, but he had set standards too high. the rot was setting in. still bearable, a sense of heart, of portrayal remained.
and now, ‘fashion’.
if nothing else, that long-winded intro would have given you a sense of what a madhur bhandarkar film has degenerated to.
there is a protagonist, who has also degenerated from being a victim, or maybe an observer (in his early films).. to a central character (in his current movies). there is a path to going up, a path to coming down. attempts at redemption. some kind of weird conclusion that shows how life goes on. some intermittent attempts at incorporating real-world events, and snarky commentary. and a few mandatory gay characters all over the place.
‘fashion’ manages to pull all the cliched set pieces from previous films, some soppy acting and production values, and deliver something that you stare at in disbelief 20 minutes into the movie. seriously, models are supposedly thin and generally are meant to exhibit some modicum of attractiveness. some of the supposedly female people cat-walking here look like men. catwalks of all sizes and arenas have bad lighting, lines running all over them. every single designer is gay. every single person talks with a thick bihari accent, yes, even those oh-so-gay designers. we have a conclusion that tries to be as filmy as it gets, in the process violating any possible thought process that you might conceive, no matter how insane or stupid you are.
but enough of general comments, we should focus on the ‘sow-stoppar’ (actual pronunciation): priyanka chopra. she goes from wearing jeans and minimal make-up, to jeans and lots of make-up. and cannot catwalk anymore (didn’t she used to be a model or something?). there are attempts to justify showcase the inevitable self-destructive tendencies of models.. or, something like it. she takes to smoking intermittently in a plausible manner, i am willing to grant that. before you know it, she is permanently sozzled, stoned, and surrounded by cig butts. impressive. she bitches about stuff and people because… because? she is supposed to! she’s gone from being a good middle-class girl (albeit stupid: contracts, affairs and sex have an equally shocking effect on her about 20 minutes after they should) to a snooty hoity-toity model. her a-class performance consists of staring blankly forward, laughing, pouting, and staring blankly forward. you feel a tad touched at the (expected) breakdown, her eyes have it – the despair, the feeling, the pathos. which goes away in 30 seconds flat as she rubs her eyes repeatedly in some weird symbolic way.
kangana ranawat is having a ball in bollywood. she gets to stay drunk, stoned and behave insane in all her movies.. which look like all she has been doing for a while. she appears intermittently, when madhur-ji gets bored of his hard-hitting female character who is decaying. she is also the worst offender on that ‘accent’ thing. ‘selebrayshans’ and ‘cungratulashans’ indeed. [and, as pointed out by uber-t, the series of ‘busturd’ expletives that she attempts to mouth, in one of the most laughable scenes in the movie. which exists for no other purpose than to further underline what an addict she is. which you are well-convinced of by then]. there are a couple of supporting characters, the names of whom i could not be bothered to remember (ha! i can be snarky too!) who try very earnestly. there are a bunch of the standard supportive characters, straight and otherwise.. which stand around talking hinglish and pouting about something or the other. when they are not being interrupted by a hideously grating techno-type soundtrack.
the question remains: why? why does warsha think this movie is halfway even close to good? why did she spend an hour arguing with me about the merits of the movie?
why? why? why?