Saturday, March 27, 2004

jaago: wake up and smell the funk

Manoj Bajpai is clearly in a catch-22 trap. Good roles won't get him the career he needs to continue to be in demand. Bad roles will give him an opportunity to rise above the material, but probably force him to compromise on quality. All for the visibility. Jaago is an example of the latter. Mehul Kumar returns to his tried-and-tested territory of cheap patriotic pontification mixed with generous doses of overacting, hamming and all the above in a Finnegan loop. MK makes a standard cameo (as Devang, the Aaj Tak TV newsreader), he ropes in KK Singh to give us volatile jingoistic screech-off-the-rooftops incendiary paragraphs, street-tinged metaphors and clichéd utterances. Sanjay Kapoor gets but 10 seconds of true meritorious acting (which, taken as a ratio of his total on-screen time so far in Bollywood, is close to 0). Raveena Tandon has tackled enough mainstream fodder for disbelief to take this one in her stride. Pratima Kazmi is wasted. The film embarasses and insults its sensitive premise (child rape) as it plods from one implausible situation to another. The contrivances make you sick. Even Bajpai's spirited turn is lost in the morass of likes like in me.n itanaa mar.d kaa zahar bhar de.nge ki saalo.n kaa ##blood group## hii ##change## ho jaayegaa. That last line comes from Puru Raj Kumar cameoing as Eliyaz Ansari. Other appearances include muted cuss words, Mushtaq Khan, Raju Shreshta (remember Master Raju?), and Manoj Joshi (who was last seen in Satta). Sameer Sen (of the Dilip Sen/Sameer Sen music director duo) provides the background drones and the ma.ntra chanting is vintage KK Singh material. Aah Manoj Bajpai, the crap I have to deal with to catch a performance of yours. Would someone give this talented man a chance please?

No comments:

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.