Friday, July 3, 2009

Nothing playing at a theatre near you.

Come Friday, I no longer wait for what Bollywood has to display. I know, it will be something utterly insipid, foolish and totally worthless. I know what Bollywood's a) art house classics are, I know what b) wholesome entertaining films are, I know what c) romantic comedies are, and I of course know what d) not-trying-to-fit-in films are.

And I am so done. So done with Bollywood and its promises. Week after week after week, Bollywood has failed us. No, I am no great movie buff, nor do I always appreciate and recognize cinematic brilliance, yet looking forward to good, watchable movies aren't much to ask for.

A little repeat is no biggie, I admit. But, you can't give me love, betrayal, adultery, period dramas and the underworld, again and again and again. You just can not. Why can't there be a movie on the Mumbai during rains, the political scene, the Nandigram episode, the 26/11, gay rights, the IPL, the North – South divide (just having an Ayyo Swami and an Oye Puttar in the script doesn't count), the state of north-east students in Delhi, etcetera.

Hollywood has its good share of absolute trash too, I agree. But at least they have some variety in that trash. They try, they fail. That's respectable. What Bollywood does, isn't.

Is it a case of they don't know better? Unlikely, given the stuff they talk about in interviews. They come across as intelligent, witty people, deeply influenced by the best in their craft, and trying to get better. Hell, even Fardeen Khan talked sense. In one of his earlier interviews, he spoke at length about Martin Scorsese's Goodfellas and Roman Polanski's Chinatown and how he is greatly influenced by that sort of a storytelling. Then why a Prem Agan? I know, I know it's like saying if I can go on and on about the Marlboro Man, I can create one. No, I can not. But wouldn't I try... Prem Agan isn't a try.

Shah Rukh Khan's interviews are pure magic. His films aren't. The point is why doesn't he try, he could, with that kind of money, he could try anything. But he chooses not to. No, don't you blame them. They are just out there, doing their job, making great money while they are at it. You and I are to be blamed. I am guilty of watching Om Shanti Om and Swariyaan on a single day, for the lack of something better to do. I feel terrible about having watched Bachna e Hasino. What was I thinking? After which, I swore to never watch a Chopra or a Johar again. It's been almost a year, I've managed to stay off it. I should have watched Dilli 6 though, reviews weren't too good, but what the heck, the guy is getting out of the clutter. I will watch most of Anurag Kashyap too. And guess Imtyaz Ali too, we don't have anything against love do we... it's about how you show us love.

We are so used to this mall-movie-eat out weekends, that we are ready to settle for just about anything. Any movie would do. And that's exactly why they get away with churning out any kind and any amount of trash. This has to stop.

While there are countless so much more serious issues to think about, we could do our part. Perhaps, all it would take is to find something 'else' to do during the weekends.

Let us do something about it. Because you and I are responsible for the art we put in the world and in that multiplex too.


  1. why Bollywood sucks would require some very serious analysis - like a PhD thesis ... but its possible that the stakes have become too high, and the supply side too concentrated for anybody to experiment - so a very select group of people control the industry - they know what works and don't want to/can't experiment because learning a new variant is time consuming and resource intensive, and doing it has high risk ... also the cost of experimenting has increased because the baseline cost of making a Hindi movie has increased - its almost mandatory to have foreign locales and expensive cinematography, and the number of competent actors has decreased because the whole thing has been pure trash for a while .. this reduces the possibility that a bright newbie might come up with a brilliant screen play that involves nothing but a bunch of super actors talking in a room.. but meanwhile we can watch movies on DVD, and not go to multiplexes

  2. C'mon! Not this weekend! :) Your nearest multiplex has ICE AGE 3...!

  3. However, Bollywood continues to be a let down.

  4. Ritz...ur so right...Bollywood sucks big time...and what sucks more is that we go on accepting mindless crap from them, day after day after day...I can't decide whom to gun's loaded!

  5. We, as a race, are under attack. Not from racial perverts or hostile neighbors. We are under attack from a potent social virus called degenerative intelligence, spreading rapidly through mass media. Bollywood alone is not to be blamed. Our TV channels, radio, print... everything is selling this crap. And we, as a race, are accepting this crap with open arms. At this pace, it wont be long before I will have to put up a "Jutt is Studd" sticker on the back of my car to avoid unwanted attention.