Movie Review: 3 Idiots

I’d personally like to thank Chetan Bhagat for the two sensible things he did since becoming ‘the popular guy’ in India amongst the youth. One, writing and converting his immensely popular novel ‘5 point someone’ into a movie script and then choosing (or rather getting chosen by) Rajkumar Hirani to direct 3 Idiots. For this movie is sure to become one of the greatest hits in recent times. This movie, although having a ‘bollywoodish’ touch to it, does strike a chord deep within. I so much remembered my two other favourite movies in recent times, Rock On and Guru while watching the movie. No, 3 Idiots doesn’t even have a slightest of resemblance with any of the two. But like the other two, it not only makes you think, it makes you act as well. I always believed that a movie should be a work of art. It should take you on a journey of your own, within you. 3 Idiots sufficiently manages to do that.

There is a difference between getting educated and becoming knowledgeable. A dialogue in the movie says, we should learn and study to become worthy and not to become successful. Success should automatically follow. And I believe, to be a knowledgeable person, some where within you need to have that rebellious attitude. An attitude that has a capacity to challenge the ‘as is’ and invent, innovate or evolve into some thing more, some thing new and some thing better. I remember during my engineering days, me and my classmate Sanjeev were struggling to get a paper presentation topic. There was a contest at IIT, Chennai and we HAD to get selected and participate. After many futile attempts at trying to learn the already presented brain heavy papers on structural engineering, we decided to do some thing on our own. We ended up presenting some thing that caught even the IITians unaware, a most economical way of building the stone columns in a marshy land. Although we didn’t win, it did receive a special mention in their record books (I suppose it is still there and has been researched by now). I cant explain the surprised look on the faces of our teachers back in our college when they learnt that two guys, one with average grades (Sanjeev) and one with non-mentionable grades (me) could do this. It was that rebellious attitude to do the difference that has carried me through all these years.

Anyway, coming back to the movie. 3 Idiots is loosely based on the novel by Chetan Bhagat, 5 Point Someone.  Loosely because the theme, the characters and the premise is the same but the story line has been altered a bit to suit the Bollywood audience (which is actually not so good). Unlike the novel, which revolves around 3 main characters, 3 Idiots revolves around 1 lead and 2 sub lead characters. Aamir Khan plays a guy called Rannchhoddas Shyamaldas Chanchad, a rich and brilliant guy, who has a central tailored role where as R. Madhavan and Sharman Joshi play Farhan Qureshi and Raju Rastogi respectively. They are all studying in Imperial College of Engineering a.k.a. IIT Delhi, headed by Dr. Viru Sahastrabuddhe (Boman Irani). The rest of the movie is about how Rannchhoddas or Ranchoo’s rebellious attitude and out of the box thinking often lands the three best friends in a soup, and as always, how every thing gets turned into a happy ending. After all, in the end ‘Aal Ij Well’. The story here bears a striking resemblance to Rajkumar Hirani’s earlier protagonist, Munnabhai MBBS. In fact, there are few sequences where you feel as if Raju has served the old wine in a new bottle. Ranchho’s altercations with the dean, his love angle with the dean’s daughter (Kareena), his overwhelming generosity, his out of the box solutions… every thing looks like ditto Munnabhai.

Coming to performances, except for the 3 Idiots and Boman Irani every one else has a short role to play, including Kareena. But all of them have done well, especially Chatur ‘Silencer’. They ensure that there is never a dull moment in the movie at all. Music by Shantanu Moitra is good. In fact ‘All is Well’ is topping the charts already. I’ll not be surprised if it has surpassed the popularity of ‘M bole to…’. If there is a healthy dose of funny moments and good songs, there are also some grey overtones where you almost feel for the characters. Raju has effectively tried to deal with the suicides and the excessive pressures of studies. The film in fact tries to give us a message, a message to follow your dreams and not some one’s expectations. It may not be strong enough to challenge the ‘Doctor ya Engineer’ typecast society and education system in India. But it sure asks questions… in fact plenty of them. Go and watch it for sure, even if you have the answers or not…

Ghajini: Peak a poop!

Last few months have been a relatively quite affair for the bollywood. Salman was robbed of a princely treatment when his (and Subhash Ghai’s) ‘Yuuvraaj’ bombed. Ironically, even the change in spelling as per some numerologist could not prevent it from sinking. There were talks that Shahrukh’s ‘Rab ne bana di jodi’ might provide some respite. But I hear that Aditya Chopra’s return to main stream direction has received only a luke warm response. The pundits had already written it off in the reviews, and I wisely stayed away.

ghajini_posterHmmm… this post isn’t about what the Bollywood is going through. Its about Ghajini and the hype! No wonder… its a trademark bollywood stuff. Whenever a movie featuring the Khans (Amir, Salman or Shahrukh… note the order) is due for release, we witness a hype of magnitudes larger than the turbulations of economies. Even Akshay has joined the fray with ‘Chandni Chowk to China.’ When it comes especially to Aamir, the hype has to surpass every thing else. Anyway, so what is Ghajini all about? Its a story of a millionaire man, played by Aamir, and his tryst with his destiny. Life is full circle for him till one day his girl friend gets raped and murdered. Unfortunately on the same day, he suffers brain damage and starts forgetting things. He tattoos the details of those who killed his girl friend in a bid to take revenge. The movie is all about his ordeal with the modes and cruelties of life.

Ghajini is actually a remake of a Kollywood movie (Starring Surya) made under the same name by A R Murugadoss, the same guy behind this movie as well. I’m sure Murugadoss was inspired from the Hollywood flick ‘Mememto’ by Christopher Nolan. I read the story of ‘Memento‘ and it seems he may have made only cosmetic changes. Should I be complaining? May be not. Ghajini was a big hit in Kollywood. The story too should suit the Indian audience well. And I have no doubts about Amir’s ability to carry the movie.

All in all, I think Ghajini should be a good package. I’m looking forward to tear it apart!    🙂

Jaane Tu Ya Jaane Na

Jaane tu ya jaane na is the ultimate story less time pass fun filled chirpy stupid movie of the year. Gosh, so many objectives. I actually couldn’t decide if I liked the movie or I didn’t. Same story… Jaanu main ya jaanu na! 🙂 lol

Well the movie opens with a sequence at the airport where 4 useless buggers decide to narrate a story to a wannabe girlfriend. A story about Rats aka Jai Singh Rathore and Meow aka Aditi Mahant. Jai and Aditi are best friends, they just can’t live without each other. (Remember Rahul and Anjali from Kuchh Kuchh Hota hai?) They sing together, they dance together, they go to college together, they eat together, they sleep… err no not together. They do every thing but don’t love each other. Because Jai is a completely spoilt Rajput, in other sense. He is extremely sweet, well mannered and a perfect mama’s boy next door unlike the rugged, macho rajputs. Aditi however hardly has any feminine traits. She believes in extremes, extreme love, extreme emotions, extreme anger… blah blah! Jai thinks he should go around with a very homely sweet girl whereas Aditi wants to marry a He-man.

So this is the plot of the movie. Nothing great, but well presented. Now enter Meghna, Jai’s new found love or what he thinks as love. Meghna brings lot of freshness to Jai’s life (And dullness to the movie. Manjari Phadnis is pathetic) He comes out of Aditi’s embraces to find a new direction, and a new friend. Aditi doesn’t complain though, but the pinch becomes obvious in her behavior. She doesn’t like Jai’s mingling around with his so called girl friend. So what next? Enter another character, Sushant Modi, Aditi’s ultimate macho man. Aditi gets up close with him, but never really so close. Still enough for Jai to realize what mistake he did. Aditi’s engagement to Sushant leaves Jai shattered. Say life can’t wait, and move on. Thats what it should have happened in real life. But wo ho… this is a bollywood movie. So another twist (a small one). Our macho man Sushant is not exactly gentle and respectful. His list of ex-girlfriends is taller than his height. An ‘I-am-the-boss’ kind of guy, he doesn’t go well with every one. Then after few more stupid things, the story ends on a happy note, typically bollywood ishtyle. Of course I’m not a idiot to tell you how.

The movie overall has a very young look and feel. Between the group of 6 stupid friends, there are some other characters like Aditi’s ultra cool parents, Jai’s mother and a dead but extremely proud father in a talking portrait (very well played by Ratna Pathak Shah and Nareeruddin Shah), Paresh Rawal as Inspector Waghmare, Arbaaz and Sohail Khan in a cameo role that add fizz to the otherwise mundane movie. The humor is very well directed, although there are no memorable lines you would normally expect from Abbas Tyrewala (the director). Imran Khan is extremely cute (legacy his uncle Aamir Khan) but might need some more acting lessons. He reminds me of Abhay Deol in Socha na tha. Spending too many years in Telagu films is showing on Genelia, she is very sweet until she opens her mouth. Others, especially Prateek Babbar as Aditi’s brother have done well to support the film. Of course, last but not the least, music by A.R. Rahman is very good too. Its refreshingly different than his usual genre.

As I said, overall the movie is fun filled. Watch it if you like to see a youth drama with lot of good humor, no villains and cute little people.