Sunday, January 25, 2009

I see the king’s fanny

Just finished seeing the toast of the season. Am of course, talking about 'Slumdog Millionaire’. The movie which supposedly has put India in the news…for all the right reasons and wrong.

Its raked up the Oscar nominations and of course critical feedback. So when I set down to watch it (on a  pirated download …same pinch to Shobha De) I was all set to hate it. Partly to be seen as ‘not part of the horde’ and partly because I expected it to suck. (Think The namesake, Welcome to Sajjanpur , Hey Ram! et al, of which our critics croaked in praise of).

I didn’t hate the movie. But I have got to say I got pretty close.

Let’s cast the supposed realism with which the director has depicted Bombay aside. Let us suppose that the movie did take place in an alternate universe.

A universe, where ‘slumdogsfrom the streets, and goons, and police wallahs and bhais speak in a ratio of 90:10 of English and Hindi just so that they can ‘look realistic.’

A universe where Indians suddenly dropped their counting systems and started using Millions, Billions etc. (But stick to 20 Million for the prize money. Why? because that’s 2 crore…)

A universe where people forget to be politically correct…even on live TV and jeer at a chai wallah. Much like the villian from B grade 90s potboilers where the villain took pride in his kameenapan.

Where KBC…i mean WWTBAM is telecast live….

Where the host of a show took personal interest in the possible gouging of money by a contestant. Maybe hosts in this universe put money from their own pocket and paid winners.

I could go on. But leaving all this aside, I just had one tiny problem with it. It was …a bit of a bore. Not very. But surely in parts. And the ending? [SPOILER ALERT!]

When the elder bro was tossing all the cash in the bathtub and shot the bhai after burying himself in it I was anticipating a humdinger of a plan to escape or something. Maybe I missed out some bit earlier where he said that was his lifelong dream or something…to be buried in cash i mean. But whatever, I lost it.

What really gets me is the @$$h0!es at the academy are so damn phony. The oscars have become (to quote my bro) a ‘bizarro’ Filmfare award. While Filmfare blindly selects the highest grosser as the best movie, these guys use box office gross as a measure to weed out movies. How else could you explain this PoS movie making  it but not The Dark Knight? hell! Taare Zameen Par deserved a nomination if this movie is the benchmark.

But if anyone deserves one, I hope ARR gets it. :-) Pity the movie didn’t have any ‘naach gaana’. The music is the best part

Thursday, January 01, 2009