Monday, July 4, 2011
Go, Bhuddah, Go!!!
I am always fascinated by how swiftly quirky new brands establish themselves in a crowded market and rapidly acquire cult status. Like SNOG and DESIGUAL. I walked into both not knowing what to expect. Snog in London lived up to its reputation ... and I loved the low calorie dahi with great toppings. About the other fashion brand ( Desigual) which I got to explore in Barcelona, I didn't quite get why it's such a rage.Last week it was all over the press for its unusual offer - it urged shoppers to arrive at the store clad in their undies... and walk out with two free outfits for any one they buy. There were long queues outside their stores across Europe with hot bods in sexy lingerie waiting to get in. What an idea, Sirji!
This appeared in Bombay Times today...
Agreed. Conceded. It’s a generational thing.We reveal our age via the movies \ music we respond to… the lingo we use…. the clothes we wear… even the food we eat. I watched this week’s two biggies back-to-back, and even the fact that I picked ‘Buddhah’ over ‘Delhi Belly’ to watch first, instantly gave away my vintage and preferences. My gut feeling says ‘Buddhah’ will make pretty good money down the line, only because ‘Buddhah’ is a ‘clean’ film. ‘DB’ is filthy! Filthy, as in gross. I loathe toilet humour, and if there are countless scenes in a movie that show an overweight man sitting on the world’s dirtiest potties with a bad case of the loosies – complete with farts galore – sorry, but it doesn’t work for me. Though, watching the movie at a packed multiplex, I did notice people ( mainly men) falling out of their seats with laughter each time the talented Roy Boy literally spilled out his guts – noisily and disgustingly. Since most of the gags in the movie are built around excreta (yuck!)… I was glad I’d skipped lunch or I would have thrown up in the theatre. I simply don’t have the stomach for such errr…. crap.
There was nothing wrong with the ‘foul language’ freely used by all the protagonists in ‘DB’ – it was in sync with the characters and their worlds. In any case the ‘F-word’ in its myriad translations and variations shocks noone these days. The other more graphic desi abuses are equally commonplace … that includes the hit number ‘Bhaag D.K.Bose’ , which is chart-bustingly brilliant. But as movies go, ‘DB’ is a lot of fun when it isn’t filthy. And the performances of the ensemble cast are nuanced enough to strike the right chord with the target audience. But ‘DB’ is no ‘Dev D’. It simply does not make the cut as a breakthrough movie for anybody who has watched umpteen international films of this genre. It’s no ‘Hangover’. It’s smart, cute and peppy. Period. And if there are two performances that stand out, those belong to Vijay Raaz as the super- cool gangster to whom shit does happen. And Poorna Jagannathan who fakes an on screen orgasm better than Meg Ryan in ‘When Harry Met Sally’. As for Imran’s much discussed hard-on – it was ummmm…. convincing!
‘BHTB’ is a full-on ‘70’s film – old-fashioned in concept and execution. And that is its USP and charm. Of course, it features the Big B paying homage to himself – I thought that was the whole idea. That he does so with a sense of irony by adopting a self-deprecatory, throwaway style, makes the effort less nauseating. Spoofing your old iconic self without reducing it to a farce, requires enormous skill, a sense of perspective and high intelligence. Here, I am assuming Amitabh Bachchan undertook the title role with this very idea in mind. If so, hats off! In a spectacular career spanning forty years, it takes guts to affectionately mock your younger self and still come out on top. There is no logic in ‘BHTB’ , just as there is none in ‘DB’. But when Amitabh breaks into a medley of his most memorable songs (“Go,Meera, Go”), there is nobody in the audience who doesn’t sing and dance along – even kids as old as Bachchan’s own grand children. Yes, his clothes are disastrous and give the impression the brand is called ‘El Cheapo’. And poor Raveena Tandon’s embarrassing ‘comeback’ makes one wonder whether the talented actress was in fact paying some sort of a twisted tribute to veteran vamp Bindu. Despite all the above, ‘BTHB’ establishes one thing unambiguously – there’s no pro like an old pro. Amitabh is still the best.