Monday, October 20, 2003

main madhuri dixit banna chahti hoon

This film has its heart in the right place. I don't see mainstream success for it. The songs are purely situational, which means, unlike all the mainsteam incongruous hits, the soundtrack won't make much. There are performances in the film, instead of broad starry flourishes. There's a simple story, told honestly, very much in the vein of Hrishikesh Mukherjee. Full marks to Rajpal Yadav, Antara Mali, and Govind Namdeo. The story is evident: Chutki (Mali), who is a hit in her little village of Gajraulaa for being an excellent Madhuri Dixit clone, wants to become a heroine in Hindi films. Raajaaraam (Yadav) loves her, and offers her the pragmatic offer of marriage, since as her husband he can get her to Mumbai and help her make it big. There are the predictable hiccups, and the film thankfully maintains a decent balance between exposing the harshness of the film industry, underscoring the fact that there is still hope, and avoiding clichés. Benjamin Gilani makes a refreshing comeback cameo as Kapil Arya, a film director on the lookout for new faces (the dialogue in the sequences he is involved in are a welcome break from the kind of tacky hackneyed crap that people seem to dish out). There's a point in the film where Chutki makes a good splash in a music video for the remix of, you guessed it, a Madhuri "classic", dhak dhak karane lagaa. Springboarding off this, she gets a break as the heroine in a South production titled "Roshni: The Ray of Hope". Her co-stars turn out to be all clones: Junior Sachin Tendulkar (I didn't catch the name of the actor, but he does a fabulous, although brief, job), Junior Hrithik, Junior Saif, Junior Bachchan, Junior Dev Anand, Junior Dilip Kumar, Junior Shah Rukh Khan, Junior Sunny and Junior Johnny Lever (yep, you read that right!) (as well as a Junior Vinod Kambli). Chutki is miffed and says (not verbatim): "but they are all fakes. I cannot work with them". The irony of the secret of her "success" being her likeness to La Dixit does not go unnoticed, but merits from being unmentioned. Priceless.

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