Monday, September 5, 2011

Yellow Boots? Ugh...

K.C. College ( phew! 6000 students in one smallish building near Churchgate Station - that is what I call space and time management!). That's where I spent my morning, addressing the bright, young first batch of the Media course, which offers a master's degree after two years. I found the kids very charged up and well informed. It was a pleasure interacting with them... and ha ha ha ... they got to hear a pretty candid account of what it's really like in this mad business. I hope I didn't disillusion those sweet idealists too much! Of course, they should go out there and change the world!!
This appeared in Bombay Times.... with due apologies to Nancy Sinatra!

These boots are made for walking….

I watched “….Yellow Boots,” and exited the multiplex with my brains scrambled! What the hell was it about? And pray, in what way did the colour of the boots have anything to do with the bizarre story, which went nowhere?There’s something mad and annoyingly self-indulgent about a certain set of self-declared arty, over-hyped,intellectualised film makers these days, who make films that seem to be specifically designed to befuddle ( and NOT in the ‘Inception’ way). Viewers who don’t ‘get it’ start suspecting their own sensibilities, others who claim they’ve ‘got it’ , come away feeling superior. But the truth of the matter is, not even the film maker ( in this case Anurag Kashyap) has actually ‘got’ anything.But again, this attempt is sweeeeet – it’s a besotted man’s ‘tofaa’ to his new wife (Kalki Koechlin), who has co-written the movie and is the girl in those damned boots! I heard a viewer comment, “This lady Kalki should change her name to Kinky! Man…. This movie is just so twisted and weird!” Perhaps , after the artistic success of Dev-D, Kalki has figured out her brand positioning in Bollywood – she gets to play all the kinky roles that mainstream heroines shun. She plays them convincingly, too. Her obsessive character in “…..Boots,” is in search of a missing father. While she looks for the guy, she works in a sleazy massage parlour and offers ‘hand jobs’ for an extra thousand bucks. Several transactions later, viewers start feeling queasy at the sight of all the discarded tissues in the waste bin. But ‘Ruth’ ( that rhymes with a certain unmentionable Hindi gaali), soldiers on ( she is on a mission, remember?) with what she euphemistically calls ‘handshakes’ or ‘happy endings’, till we hurtle towards the (anti)climax. In between, a whole bunch of caricatures with no relevance to the story, bob in and out of the film – a druggie boy friend, handcuffed to a window grill, who is forced to pee out of the window. And an adorable baddie Chittiappa from Karnataka (Gulshan Devaiya), who prefers his ‘handshake’ through a thick towel. But the real star of this kinky-indie, is Puja Sarup, the cell-phone addict who runs the seedy parlour. Despite all these obvious flaws, I still didn’t mind the 350 bucks I spent on this pointless tale about incest and child abuse. Kalki definitely has a future.Kinky is ‘in’.

The movie I am holding my breath for is ‘My Brother Ki Dulhan.’ Our ‘Kat on a Hit Tin Room’ has outdone her own Sheila in this role, going by the promos. Guns, guitars and roses coming up!
Jehangir Sabavala passed away as quietly and discreetly as he had lived.Elegant and refined even in death. I loved the story about Jehangir as a student, turning up at the J.J. School of Art in his stately car, with a personal valet carrying his paint brushes and palette! He sliced through the boring stereotype of an artist starving in an attic , clad in shabby clothes and sporting a scruffy beard. Sabavala was India’s cravat-wearing Dali. But unlike Dali, Jehangir’s precise, subdued paintings reflected his aristocratic approach to art as well as to life.They really don’t make them like him any more!


Goalady99 said...

Looks like rather you needed the yellow boots to get to the movie in this dripping rain. Love love love your "Jhoola" picture- specially the beautiful "satwik" expression on your face. i am sick and tired of seeing slutty expression on models these days. Saree must have beautiful in color.

glimpses said...

we women are kinky mam...why to blame that one girl alone

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*Aham* said...

Katrina is sweet, but over rated. she looks a little chavvanni kam to me.


i like some of anurag's films. he is genuine... but sometimes gets too obsessed with making things look dark and complex.

how can one forget the shock called no smoking. some films should come with a manual.

i wonder why this sudden obsession with the "C" word. and every other hindi film is filled with sexual contexts.

it is OTT...

there was a zamana, when many kids like me then, thought that if a blouse is thrown in the air by a man it is called "rape".
now we speak about hand jobs and all. reality film has become too real, i feel. i appreciate, but kabhi kabhi it doesnt get hajjam.

i want to go back to the days when i used to buy womens era and femina to read prescription and peal padamsee's home truths.
so much for titillation, if not knowledge.

i feel though we are getting "real"... and raw.. and getting the
"ahhh! this toh i have done" attitude... no wonder kink has found a new spunk.

I feel kalki is a great actress... and to grow, she needs to come free of her hubby jaans lap.

and what is this obsession about showing wife/girlfriend as a slutty savitri on anurag's films. he did the same in Dev D. I thought only Ketan Mehta had this obsession... (remember deepa sahi's maya memsab and darling yeh hai india)... so much hotness that they want to share with the whole world is it???

Kalki is beyond kinky... she needs the right break... with a role minus skin and sin...

Chintan said...

i totally dig kalki,i don't care if she plays kinki! women are indeed kinkier now.

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चंद्रमौलेश्वर प्रसाद said...

yellow boots or `My foot'... the brain is scrambled:)

May the soul of Jehangir Sabavala rest in peace.

Jyostna said...

Viewers who don’t ‘get it’ start suspecting their own sensibilities, others who claim they’ve ‘got it’ , come away feeling superior.

I love this line..this is how I feel sometimes esp when some celebrities keep posting innumerable praising tweets abt some non sense movies :P

venk@t said...

My Review on the film.

Shobhaa, i totally adore the way you write- so bold, expressive and so totally desi. Love your bollywood reviews the most. Rearely disagree with any

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x said...

I too was curious about how AK had apprehensions about working with Kalki and how he swore not to do so in future. But that is nice review there and echoes my thoughts exactly. Left out the dialogue that is about as coordinated as a drunk reggae band in himachal and quite a hoot when you realize that it covers plot gaps. People just talk to each other without reason.

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ktd said...

i like some of anurag's films. he is genuine... but sometimes gets too obsessed with making things look dark and complex
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