Finally I watched Bombay talkies, nearly half an year after the movie released. I had high hopes from the movie as this movie was made to celebrate the completion of 100 years of Indian cinema, also the more fascinating point being that it has four short stories directed by four maestro directors of Indian Cinema – Karan Johar, Dibakar Banerjee, Zoya Akhtar and Anurag Kashyap(My Fav). I won’t say that my hopes were not met, they were to some extent, but in the end I was craving for more. Craving for that extra icing on the cake, and that extra was satisfied with the title song pictured on the fabulous stars like Aamir Khan, Ranbir Kapoor, Kareena, Sridevi, Madhuri, Karishma, Vidya, Akshay, Imran, Shahrukh and many more…..
First story of this movie is titled “Ajeeb Dastan Hai Ye”, and is directed by Karan Johar. This story deals with homosexuality, and quite surprisingly very differently than Karan’s earlier attempt of “Dostaana”. Story is of a homosexual media intern Saquib, who is working for Rani Mukherji, married to News reader and analyzer Randeep Hooda. Problem arises when Saquib understood that the married couple is not so happily married and this is because the husband is gay. So, out of nowhere he makes a move on him (stupidly, in front of his whole news crew in the office), and got beaten up badly. Saquib again very stupidly went to Rani, and again in front of everyone at her office, announced that her husband has actually kissed him. So lame. Very mature Karan. Well, I really liked the part where saquib got into a fight with his father, slapping him continuously and shouting “I am not a eunuch, I am homosexual. And even if I would be a eunuch, there is nothing wrong with it. There is nothing wrong with me.” I didn’t liked the climax though, in the end it is shown that poor Randeep who was actually a confused soul (gay or straight, who am I?), got thrown out of his house, by the wifey, Rani. End is shown as it is liberating for Rani to finally know that it was not her fault in marriage, it’s his, the husband. And there goes the whole idea behind depicting homosexuality in a broad-minded way. It should have been the liberation of husband, who finally came to know what he actually wants and what he really is. Alas!
Another point which I should have pointed out in the beginning is that the above story does not seem to be related to Indian Cinema in any way. All the other stories have somewhat taken inspiration from the cinema. Moving on to the the next one.
This story “Star” is the most beautifully written. Directed by Dibakar Banerjee, this is the story of a failed star/actor played by Nawazuddin. He believes that if he is good in his work, then work will come to him. Thus, he is mostly without work, even though he proves in the end that he is good in his work. It was a surprise encounter of his mentor’s ghost that actually opens his eyes, and he came to know of the fact that it does not matter if you are good or bad in your work, what matters most is, passion. Passion in what you do. You could be good in acting, but unless you have the passion to leave everything, take risk and completely immerse yourself in acting, you can not achieve success. Realization come and he runs to his daughter and with that passion in the eyes, narrates his whole day to her. The day when he actually worked in a film with Ranbir Kapoor. He sleeps that night, peacefully. As if he has find his Nirvana.
Third story “Shiela Ki Jawani” directed by Zoya Akhtar, is of a little boy, who actually loves dressing up as girl, adores Katrina Kaif, and dances to the tune of “Shiela Ki Jawani”. His father, being a typical male, does not want his boy to go a girly way and impose football lessons on him. This story depicts that as a parent and as a society we are the one who have made differentiation between what a girl or boy can do, and what they are not allowed to do. A father can gift a doll to his daughter and ball to his son but not the other way. A teacher who is teaching classical dance to girls, does not want a boy to even look at the lessons. This is the same society we are living in, who then tell us to raise our daughters and boys as same. Most touching part was when the sister asks the boy, “Do you know, why papa was so angry at you?”. Boy replied “Maybe because I touched mamma’s makeup”. She replies “No, it’s because you were dressed as a girl”. And he said very innocently “Why? Is it bad to be a girl?”
Last story “Murabba”, directed by Anurag Kashyap, truly captures the essence of impact of Indian cinema in our lives. That larger than life image of film stars and the way we relate to them. A small town boy, Vijay goes to Mumbai to fulfill his father’s wish of eating a Murabba blessed by none other than “The Amitabh Bachchan”. This film also shows the honest and pure desire by which small towners still worship their cinema idols. Vijay struggles and try to work out any possible way to reach the mega star, he even try to bribe the security guard at Mr. Bachchan’s house. Finally, he did manage to give Murabba to him, actually persuade him to eat half of it before his eyes. Very innocent. Fun part was when his father tells him the true story behind his encounter with “The Dilip Kumar”. Lesson learn “Never put Murabba in Achaar’s jar”.
I did enjoyed all the stories, some more and some less but nevertheless I liked them. But, it was the end title song “Apna Bombay Takies” which takes your breath away. Phew!!!
Now, I am going to cook myself a good lunch, and there is no sharing when it comes to food. So, you better go and watch a movie 🙂
- Bombay Talkies: Winds of change (thehindu.com)
- Celebrating 100 years of Indian Cinema- Bombay Talkies (femmehavenn.wordpress.com)
- Bombay Talkies (2013) (iheart1080p.wordpress.com)
- LIFF Closing Night: Bombay Talkies (maahinandfilms.wordpress.com)
- Homosexuality in Bollywood films (dnaindia.com)