C grade releases dominate in March
One of the less hyped release of last week was Malamaal Weekly – Priyadarshan. In a nutshell, MALAMAAL WEEKLY isn’t great cinema. Nor is it a terrible letdown. It floats in between, a strictly average fare with the by-now-famous Priyadarshan touch visible sporadically and intermittently. With such huge collection of comic characters from Paresh Rawal, Om Puri, Ritesh Deshmukh, Rajpal Yadav, Shakti Kapoor to Asrani, the movie could have been made bit paceful and lively.
Last week’s another release was Jigyaasa. JIGYAASA makes an effort to present an inside view of the Hindi film industry, but the unfortunate part is, what comes across on screen makes you uncomfortable. And — most importantly — it paints a dark picture of the industry.
In the film, an aspiring actress sleeps with a topnotch producer to bag a film assignment, then a lady producer [lesbian] to bag another film, then with the film’s lead man, then offers a male companion to a gay activist cum organizer of a film award, then sleeps with a gangster, in between takes to drugs, then accuses an actor-director of sexual molestation and in the end, commits suicide.
JIGYAASA even takes potshots at several known names [it’s not difficult to guess the targets] and packs in incidents that we may’ve read in newspapers or watched clips on television news channels. Add to it a generous dose of sleaze and titillation and you’ve a film that bares the mechanism of the industry.
Sadly, the end result leaves a bad taste in your mouth. What could’ve been an exciting experience comes across as a tacky exercise that tarnishes the image of Bollywood.
Another release which went unnoticed last week was, Mr. 100% – The Real player. It?s based on male prostitutes/gigolos. With a rarely attempted concept on hand, the makers could?ve come up with a thought-provoking fare. Unfortunately, MR. 100% ? THE REAL PLAYER is all about titillation.
This week(17th March) it was same as last week, movies like Umar, Banana Brothers and some other C graders – unfortunately some makers and critics hype them as independent movies like in Hollywood.
Umar highlights the plight of senior citizens with parallel crime story. It not only looks at the atrocities committed by their kith and kin during their sunset years, but the story also has a crime angle running parallel. Unfortunately it stands nowhere near BAGHBAN, Avtar or Swarg which had similar theme.
The problem is, while the story of the senior citizens holds interest, the crime part doesn’t. If the emotional story of the three aged people [Kader Khan, Prem Chopra, Satish Kaushik] appears straight out of life/identifiable and moves you, the crime story fails to thrill you. It actually stands out like an island.
Banana Brothers is a comedy made in English with a dash of Punjabi and Gujarati, BANANA BROTHERS shows the difficulties faced by Indians who migrate to foreign land in search of money and success. The serious issue is dealt with humor this time. It is supposedly a light entertainer, but there are hardly any moments that tickle your funny bone. Besides, the pacing of the film is quite slow and the goings-on unfold at a sluggish pace. Ohh ya, stars were viz; Anupam Kher, Gushan Grover and Johny Lever.