Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Bollywood's 100 Crore Club


Meet 9- year- 0ld Nolan. Have you seen a handsomer boy.... a more calm and beautiful one? I haven't! Not for the longest time. Nolan was in Pune last week to celebrate his 'Munjha'( thread ceremony). Going by his tranquil, Buddha -like expression, he really understood the significance of the ceremony and enjoyed himself. Take a bow, parents ( Nolan's mother is one of our Blogdosts), grand-parents and sister....

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This appeared in Bombay Times today....

Bollywood’s 100 Crore Club

Bollywood’s latest obsession with movies that gross 100 crores in record breaking time, is both amusing and somewhat alarming. It has given birth to a brand new caste system in which the film industry is neatly divided into those who belong to the elite club and those that don’t. The latest entrant is ‘Ek Tha Tiger’, a movie riddled with so many absurdities, it’s pointless to list them. Not that it matters. It has crossed the magic number and who cares about anything else? The Box Office is king. And nobody argues with that. The problem is not with mass entertainers like Ek Tha Tiger raking in the big bucks, it is with the less than enthusiastic response to the real gems that fail to make this kind of insane money. Also, because of this 100 crore divide, movie makers have started to judge talent and success using this single yardstick and scoff at those who disagree. The 100 crorewallas really don’t care a damn what anybody thinks of their films. Most have taken to mocking movie critics who don’t gush over these crazily successful blockbusters. I have read interviews in which producers / directors sneer, “Who cares for critics?We pay zero attention to reviews and reviewers… we only look at the box office returns.” In such a complacent environment, there is no room for healthy debate, which is a pity. Given the profile of movie goers, there is ample space for all sorts of films… as the modest success of several indies has convincingly established. But so long as we only measure success using the 100 crore benchmark,we will be stuck with movies like ‘Ek Tha Tiger’ or ‘Bol Bachchan’ , which are fun,but certainly not brilliant on any level. Tiger is not Chulbul Pandey, and Ek Tha is not a patch on Dabbang. But its stupendous commercial success will be thrown in the face of anybody who displays a less than ecstatic response to the movie . The pressures on any ambitious film maker now is to aim for that 100 crore target – that’s it. And stars who have been a part of this 100 crore phenomenon are suddenly throwing attitude and jacking up their fees. Even if their performances have been lousy… and their roles, idiotic.

I watched Gangs of Wasseypur-2 inside a half empty hall at a multiplex. This was on a Saturday night. A few hours earlier, Mumbai had been ravaged by rioting mobs, and the atmosphere at the multiplex was tense. I attributed the thin attendance to the fear factor. There was a red alert in the city, and I had been advised by concerned friends to stay home. As the movie unfolded, I started to get goose bumps – the violence on the big screen was as grisly as the one Mumbai had endured a couple of hours earlier. An eerie case of life imitating art – or the other way around? I was totally riveted from the opening scene itself and found it difficult to breathe normally. Every aspect of the movie was powerfully dealt with – from the characterisation, dialogues, costumes, cinematography, music ( Oh! What music!) to the gory dance of death during the climax. Despite the bloodbaths that splatter across the screen at regular intervals, there was no gratuitous violence… and that’s preciselywhat made the film so chillingly real. As for Nawazuddin Siddiqui’s Faisal Khan , it is one screen role that will go on to define the genre. Much like Bhiku Mhatre or Langda Tyagi. Zeeshan Quadri as ‘Definite’ is an amazing find, and will go places really fast. But it is Huma Quereshi’s raw sexuality that sets the movie on fire. Huma makes most of our Bollywood’s 100 crore ladies look like insipid , sexless nannies. She is earthy, voluptuous and effortlessly gobbles up the screen. By any standards, GoW-2 is superb cinema. A must watch just to observe how seamlessly one gets drawn into the most terrible tale of revenge and retribution. But will it ever crack that 100 crore Club? Naah. And that ‘crime’ will be held against it while a pretty shallow Ek Tha… will keep the industry folks rocking till the next monster hit comes along at Diwali. If great movies were only about great destinations, would we need the ‘Discovery Channel’?

29 comments:

Unknown said...

I know for most of us 100 crore is a big figure, which we will never be able to earn in 1 life time but let me give another perspective. I would say Gangs Of Wassepur(GOW) outperformed Ek tha tigers. AB PUCHO KAISAY ?
Cost of making any Sallu movie 150 cr, box office collection 180 cr return on investment (ROI) 120% on the other hand cost of making GOW 17cr box office collection 55cr ROI 300+ % I am ready to bet Sallu bhai will never be able to outperform GOW in his life time in one movie except hum aapke hain kaun. The quality cinema can never be outperformed so sit back and enjoy, by the way I am yet to see GOW II and ready to bet it will be great as expected. Jitendra Wankhede (Please correct me if I am wrong)

Kohl_lined said...

u are quite true here. there are many a stars whose films reach the 100 crore bench mark because of their already famous good will. mumbaiboss.com has given such a sarcastic review of the film, do read it sometime.
cheers!
kunj
kohllined.blogspot.in

pepguru said...

100% BANG ON. I watched both movies on their respective first days and GOW 2 had a far more responsive audience while Ek tha tiger had this numbing silence in the non action parts.

A Frivolous Analyser said...

Since you have mentioned about thread ceremony, there is a sacred word said during the thread ceremony in the ear of the child. I have linked this ritual to the voice of our MOTHERLAND. I Invite you to read the complete post which was also published by DNA Around the Blog section. I request your comment as well. Thanks
The link to the post : http://theshittanalysis.blogspot.in/2012/08/tryst-with-destiny-forgotten-promises.html

Raghav said...

from what a few friends and I looked like in our 'upanayana' and what we are now, maybe i should say looks are really deceiving ;)

snehal said...

Excellent point made. I watched Ek tha Tiger. It is a good commercial film but is not great like 3 idiots. Still the movie has managed to gross 100 crores which is absurd!
It happens only in India!!

Suresh Mandan said...

There were no other movies released during the release of ETT.Without competition, 100 crore is not a big thing.

Tsomo85 said...

Clean kid, me loveshing! Adorable. What's "Ek Tha Tiger"? Just playing! Thank god that I don't watch films any more, exceptional for *blue moon* though! Watched way too many in my teen, both Hollywood & Bollywood. Totally agree with you on movie business now days!

Theyoginme said...

What a great picture of Nolan. Congrats Kiran. I wish I could have made it.

Theyoginme said...

What a great picture of Nolan. Congrats Kiran. I wish I could have made it.

Deepti Sur said...

one actor who really pisses me off is ajay devgan . he has become a bachan chamcha these days.. so much for that 100 crore mark !!

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Divya Virmani said...

Hi Ms De, I read this article on TOI and agree with you. It's only box office which decides if this movie is good or not... And it seems like all loser movies are making ridiculous money. Can you imagine how rich these Khan's are? Gosh, only if they do just a lil for their country...really! (Aamir Khan is the only Khan who seems to be helping our country with both hands)

divyavirmani.blogspot.com

anuj singh sodha said...
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anuj singh sodha said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
anuj singh sodha said...

Nawazuddin siddiqui is great like Mountain

Sayali Askulkar said...

True..... We have found a brillant actor .... Nawazuddin siddiqui....... I am keen to watch his performance in Mountain Man

shahid paul said...

Well Said Ms De , Nawazuddin Siddiqui is one of the finest Actor in the World... He is doing a great job ....

shahid paul said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
bhaan singh said...

You Said True Shobha ji....he is not just a fine actor, after watching Gangs of Wasseypur 2 I am trying to figure out wht to call His ART,, Right now I dnt have words to define the experience of watching u Nawaz Sir!

bhaan singh said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
aalya khan said...

Gangs of Wasseypur 2 is a Classic Movie after watching this, i am in love with the Faizal Khan (Nawazuddin Siddiqui) . i cant say more ........ Bass

K.B. Randhawa said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
K.B. Randhawa said...

Ms Aalya Khan, what about your boyfriend............
but yes Nawazuddin Siddiqui is simply Brillent

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now movies easily reach 100 crore mark within a weeks time
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Vishal Singh said...

Here is an insider’s perspective into Bollywood’s ultimate benchmark – ‘The 100 Crore Movie.’
You can bust open the myth here: http://homegrown.co.in/the-myth-of-the-100-crore-film/

Aditya said...

Amazing Post
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