Sunday, September 21, 2014

Khoobsurat - indeed!

Khoobsurat - indeed!

There are few words which convey absolutely the same meaning universally. No matter which language you speak if you could get their translation, localized to your own dialect right they would evoke similar emotions cutting across such man made barriers. 'Khoobsurat' indeed is first among such equals. We might not get overtly ecstatic on hearing this mundane word which might lack any of literary aristocracy but one must be in complete disarray if s/he doesn't get a more than barely noticeable contortion between his or her lips and a twinkle in eyes on observing some khoobsurat phenomenon around.

This weekend's reincarnation of the Bollywood's way of portraying civilization's khoobsurati was a mighty and bold adventure for it ran the risk of being labelled its worthy predecessor's illegitimate child. Ah! I am referring to the obvious recollection any one could have i.e., of the Hrishi Da's sumptuous original offering in 1980 (and not the 1999 version which at the best could find its mention in film journals' footnotes) which my generation first relished few years after it coming to life thanks to the omnipresent (and omnipotent as well) Doordarshan. Then of course we didn't mind helping ourselves with its extra servings as and when we were presented with them.

Circa 2014. This is the age of even the older generation using Skype to connect with their folks in the hinterlands of Rajasthan. The nostalgic Lambretta makes way for the convertible BMW. But the thoughts and traditions of the royalty still remain firmly itched to the colonial times. It requires the chutzpah of the careless physio to disturb the equilibrium and challenge the cohesive strength of "goontha hua aata"!

This is a feel good delicacy all through its 130 minutes of running time. There never is a dull moment and for all its over the top characterization where everyone is sort of competing with each other, treading in a risque mode of eventually rendered marginalized in the process they all are surprisingly believable! That's the result of a heady concoction of a tight screenplay and restrained (read mature) performances of the leading protagonists.

Nobody could have essayed the "devil may care" role better than the bubbly Sonam. She is vivacious and doesn't think twice before speaking her mind (and heart) out. Her raw energy is well complemented by the suave Prince charming played by the import from across the border, Fawad and what a debut he has made! Kirron Kher has copyrighted the Punjabi mother's role over the last decade and Ratna Pathak Shah, with her snobbery adds tadka to this delectable curry.

Soft & peppy music keeps sprinkling itself (without any interruption in the smooth flow of the narrative) like chilli flakes on the even otherwise tempting cheese pizza. And make no mistake. It's a pizza that could be shared by all the family members while superseding individual choices yet not compromising on the normally elusive after taste that stays with you for a long while.

For its extremely universal acceptability potential it gets a perfect ten on the REndex. Just go for it even if you haven't hit a nearby screen in ages. I bet you won't curse me. If you do so, I accept the eventuality of public ridicule in advance.

(C) Rits Original