Sunday, June 3, 2012

"Don't Angry Me..." what a line!

I watched Rowdy Rathore ( very strange title - Rascalam Rathore would have been better), first day, third show. It was obvious from the title track itself that this was a Rassam-Western, 'Sholay'with a Telegu accent. But what a riot it was! Well... at least the hysterical first half. Post-interval, the movie just gave up and died... like the hundreds of extras, single-handedly demolished by two Akshays (all hail the return of the double role!). But wait - I swear just the sheer vulgarity of it all, was dazzling. From Sonakshi's Pussycat from Patna moves ( most of her close-ups are waist down), to Akshay's hilariously imbecile dialogues - "Don't angry me!" is my current favourite, Prabhudeva's directorial effort delivers egg-xactly what it promises - glamourised garbage. Did I mind the four hundred bucks (not counting the pop corn) I spent per ticket? Naaaah! I came away singing Chinta ta ta. BTW, the perfectly cast nutcase who played the evil rapist son of Bapji was pretty, damn good. Who is he??? Blogdosts - do let me know.

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I have had my standard Sunday afternoon pig out. Home made idlis, dosas, sambar, chutney. Strange. This is what we pounce on in a Bengali-Maharashtrian home. It is produced by two young ladies who work with us - one is from Kanpur, the other from Jharkhand. Imagine - no maach-mangsho, no shrikhand-puri or aamras-poli. Just a free , happy Republic of Food. Niccccceeeee....

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This appeared in Asian Age yesterday....

West Bengal’s M.C. oops, sorry,C.M. is a total rockstar! Last week she established her credentials as an entertainer par excellence, even managing at times to overshadow Bollywood Badshah, Shah Rukh Khan. This is no mean feat! Didi’s song -and-dance show at the historic Eden Gardens was so riveting, it hogged television time and wiped out any other news that sultry afternoon earlier this week. This was Didi’s personal ‘Poribartan’, and her fawning fans went gaga, demanding more and more of it. The “new,impoved’ Mamata Banerjee was seen in a ‘never before role’, as Bollywood publicists gush when a heroine raises the bar ( Vidya Balan in ‘Dirty Picture’). Here was the fierce Chief Minister, slayer of fire breathing Commie dragons, best ‘bondhu’ of Hillary Clinton, the TV guest who walks off shows, the woman who sees a Maoist, not a bright student questioning her in the studio,the persecuted soul who’s convinced the Venezuelans are plotting to kill her…but at the KKR ‘bhictory’ celebrations, how she dazzled! Didi was seen simpering and blushing while SRK hugged and kissed her in the presence of thousands. Strictly brotherly moves, of course. Phir bhi! Wow!

After that amazing and unexpected display of her softer, more feminine side, political pundits are left scratching their heads and wondering whether Didi’s uninhibited act, is likely to backfire… or will it earn her extra brownie points? Going by the rapturous support she received in her home state, it’s safe to say, her well-calculated move acted as an instant pick me up… a booster shot. It was like a thirsty man on a muggy afternoon in Kolkata, walking into the Tolly Club and sipping noisily from a tankard of well-chilled beer.Aaaah! What a feeling! The unwashed masses going without essentials in rural West Bengal, must have felt the same way when Didi danced with Bollywood’s biggest star. The image was positive and uplifting for the poorest of the poor supporters, mesmerized temporarily into believing “aal eez well”. After all, even the Governorsaab himself was being led by the hand by their Didi, and persuaded to join in the fun and games. As Bengali intellectuals from various factions conceded, albeit reluctantly, since there really is nothing else worth celebrating in Didi’s broke State, what’s wrong in some much-needed hoopla when a cricket team wins a Club tournament? KKR lifting the IPL trophy was just what the doctor ordered. At least for those few euphoric hours, it was possible for Didi’s supporters to forget their woes and laugh! Those of us who found these orchestrated shenanigans not just ludicrous, but entirely out of proportion, were hooted out and dismissed as ‘cynics’, ‘spoilsports’, worse. Self -styled analysts took pains to deconstruct the Bong psyche and explain to a skeptical nation that it is in the dna of Bengalis to celebrate exuberantly through song-and-dance, any excuse being good enough. Look at how Bengalis enjoy Durga Puja. Indeed,they have a point. But I find it hard to believe that these very same people did not see the celebration as a pretty cold blooded, image-fixing exercise that was more a political rally than a spontaneous gathering of cricket fans. At a time when Didi herself is reeling from various embarrassments and gaffes,along came a cricket trophy that was rather circuitously linked to Kolkata (via the name of the franchise). Bas! That was enough to lift spirits and forget everything else. A privately owned , affluent club had won this season’s tournament. No doubt it was a thrilling finish and an admirable victory. But for the State Government to get involved,made some observers ( yes, those humourless cynics!)wonder about the politics behind the mass celebrations.Apart from the obvious, perhaps annoying question( “Who paid for the party?”), remains a lingering doubt about the altruistic intentions behind the scale and manner involved. Was it not a clever way of pumping up Didi’s rapidly waning popularity?As a mighty show of strength, it must have convinced her largely illiterate and desperately poor cadres that Didi was still the Boss. Bigg Boss! Watching her in action on the field, she was at once a Sergeant Major, Traffic Controller, deejay and Security Incharge. As she firmly led the Governor by the hand and dragged him for the photo-op, it was pretty evident who was calling the shots. When she screamed instructions into a mike, you bet the cowering masses either took cover, or scampered off to do her bidding. This was Didi’s show, and she wanted everybody to know it.

Well, the show is over. We have a brand new, bona fide World Champion in Vishwanath Anand. Putin himself has crowned him King of the Chess board. This is Anand’s fifth win. Mamata has got into the act again and demanded a Bharat Ratna for Anand. But I doubt she’s going to follow that up with a big bash for him in Kolkata. Perhaps, encouraged by Didi’s showmanship, will the equally formidable J.Jayalalithaa pull out the stops and line up elephants for Anand’s victory parade? This just may become the new political game in town – felicitating our few international sports stars. Not a bad plan, when you think of it. There is a fuzzy ‘feel good’ factor involved. And with the poor rupee’s disastrous showing, politicians are desperately looking around for excuses to distract the electorate. It’s a good thing at least some Indians are on a winning streak in something! Or else we would be forced to confront real issues, with zero solutions. Then what?

No point asking Manmohanji. Even his dentist has advised him to keep his mouth shut!

16 comments:

Life Unordinary said...

Lucky you..what a nice medley of food they must serve up!

Unknown said...

Ms.De, I love your columns, but please don't bow to the Rascalam craze - seriously, we south Indians have NEVER heard of or used a word called Rascala, leaven alone Rascalam.

Not sure why SRK came up with that silly term which was even more silly-ly lapped up by north Indians. We say a lot of other stuff like StuPpid, that iDdiot, blaDdy fool or thiruttu RaAscal meaning that chor rascal) with extra enunciation on some consonants, but "Rascala" and "Rascalam", I can vouch for is absolute greek and spanish to us as much as it is to you

My journey said...

Yeah starting of first half was little boring but they made up in the last. "Khiladi ko bhool gaye kya" was also good :)

Coming down to Mamata di, I dont what she intends to do. Every time so sad incidents happens she attributes them to Left party or bash on media people. How can it be a "Poribortan" in Bengal if the club is owned by Mumbai film star guided by Delhi boy and have players from all over the world?

Tsomo85 said...

lol. I love when people reveal their true color! It's just matter of time. Certainly Rawdy Rathore is one of them. After all it's played by playboy Akhi and Patna girl Sonakshi!

7c275280-ae25-11e1-a05d-000bcdca4d7a said...

Ms. De,

I would be glad if you can read this and highlight this to certain stupid brainless RS of bollywood!

http://hotklixblog.com/sonam-kapoor-calls-katrina-kaif-shameless/

eeswar said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
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Website and Printing Solutions said...

I saw the original south Indian version of Rowdy Rathore on Colors few days back. It was too loud so i couldn't muster the guts to see Akshay's Rowdy Rathore. But i might give it a second thought after reading your article.
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lawyer delhi said...

I like the line" Don't angry me"
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thespecsandthecity said...

"Even his dentist has advised him to keep his mouth shut!"-That clinched it for me!Brilliant!

Jyostna said...

I wish u spelled TELUGU right(NOT TELEGU)

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