Monday, April 27, 2009

"Dasvidaniya" (Language - Hindi) (2008) - Movie Review

The garish assortment of the current Bollywood films have numbed any movie goer to be uncontrollably happy for a calm film. Even if the calmness actually becomes a movie with bland characters never reaching its peak though showing hopes of it. And when the slowness has woken up, it begins hurrying to wrap up before it reaches a resolve. “Dasvidaniya” is a one man with “The Bucket List” which is again a sappy tutorial with no fun. There are patches of originality with wide gaps of nothing but inability to embrace the graveness of the death with a smile, not laughingly but with full of heart.

A text book definition simpleton Amar Kaul (Vinay Pathak) lives in the middle class caricature flats in the busy Mumbai. He is the silent destroyer of himself. His boss (Saurab Shukla) is always in the look out for another couple of hands to grow up so that he can plunge into his food is an epitome of the dreaded bosses and uses Amar as his work horse. With a mother (Sarita Joshi) buried in TV serials, this 37 year old lonely man has nothing but boredom in his life. Adding to this comes the film’s pet disease while reality’s worst of worst, Stomach Cancer. If anything needs to be said very concretely about in a Bollywood film then it is the relentless effort to establish a point by known facts, well Bollywood facts. If a character must and should die without any visible ailment, it has to be cancer. It is the single most forgivable fault any director can get by in the history of cinema.

Anyways, our man drenched in sorrow and pity deflowers his alcohol chastity to invoke his dual personality. He comes and kicks the lethargy in moving the ending life of Amar. Hence he formulates wishes as he goes by to fulfill before his time says enough of him. Vinay Pathak is perfect for this dull and slow moving Amar. His innocence which would win him sweet guy title with girls would only go till that. Amar’s crushes and loves end before it starts and begins as soon as it ends with the next woman coming right across him. His mundane chores of writing “Things to do” every morning has driven him to madness of being stuck in a day. In fact his cancer is the most lively thing ever happened to him. He gets a reason for being unreasonable. He leaves his job (gloriously embarrassing his boss), buys a new car, takes an abroad trip, visits friends and tries to reunite with his distant brother (Gaurav Gera).

Who is Amar? As I defined a simpleton right? Well that can be numerous billions of Amar’s in different forms in countless cultures with same routines of days. Yet there is an individuality in their similarity. Our Amar never gets out of his comfort zone even in his jump start to break his string of file filled work. A person like this gets to slice the shell of shyness and go out to enjoy his life. He does so and in an unexpected surprise from his friend Rajiv’s (Rajat Kapoor) wife (Suchitra Pillai) suspects his sudden arrival as a free help for his cancer treatment as they are both doctors. Hurt and let down, he gets out in an unknown land and develops a three day relationship with a sex worker (Manoyla Svitlana). What happens between them is a script scribbled unexplained band-aid. It is utterly unconvincing and a blatant laziness in not taking an effort to properly tell a story of this given up man in finding a love (and getting laid).

I might crib about the simplicity being the grandeur in the current Bollywood industry but the film actually rides on the laid back wave to sooth the story without stress most of the times. While that indeed helps, it becomes a loose cannon in getting complacent. “Dasvadinaya” not only suffers that but takes a good solid lunch and relaxes when there is so much demanded from it.

Director Shashant Shah takes the cue card proposal to his friend’s new wife from “Love Actually” into dumb charades in drenching rain to his child hood sweet heart (Neha Dhupia). Then he even uses the yellow paper from “The Bucket List” with a proper “Things to do” title at the top. In these unneeded plagiarism without which the film could have survived comfortably never summates to its emotions. Its central character has hard time becoming this individual for whom we begin to care not because of his illness rather for his character. In the very end of the film it comes a close touch to it. He sits on the balcony and tells his brother the reason for buying this particular property. He explains the hours he spent and the small details he got out of it which has completed his life. Unfortunately it seems too late for Amar and for us towards the film.

No comments: