Finally my 10 cents on Om Shanti Om

If this post reeks of staleness, please clench you noses to read on!

I had to spend these 10 cents on Om Shanti Om having already spent 500 bucks on the tickets.

Spare me the faux tributes to the 70s please!
That public memory is short, is an oft repeated cliché. But in India we manifest collective amnesia in epidemic proportions. This is best exemplified in the film promoters’ ‘tribute to 70s’ in pre-release interviews, previews, and post-release reviews. And our gullibility in accepting that at face-value and according it a premium by using the same in our respective private discussions.

What’s my problem with that?

That exactly the same set of descriptors were used for Main Hoon Na by the same set of people — film’s producers, media and us!

Don’t believe me?

Check out these motley excerpts from Main Hoon Na reviews in 2004!

Main Hoon Na is a fun film. It doesn’t preach. It doesn’t go by logic. It isn’t realistic. But it’s shamelessly entertaining. So if you are looking for 1970s-style entertainment, Main Hoon Na is what I recommend. Enjoy! [Rediff.com review]

****

Main Hoon Na is by no means a thought provoking film. And the best part is it doesn’t pretend to be either. It is Farah Khan’s tribute to the 70’s style of filmmaking, comprising of a silly but fun comedy track, lost and found siblings, dutiful sons, hammy villains, adult and teenage romances and racy music. [BBC review]

****

Main Hoon Naa is a beautiful homage to Bollywood masala and Manmohan Desai must be smiling from the skies. Farah Khan’s love for the movies is evident in every frame [...] Farah Khan has definitely borrowed bits and pieces of a dozen other soucres as inspiration – Panchamda, John Woo, Matrix, Manmohan Desai, Chopras, Johars to name a few. But they have definitely not been imitated or added for “extra effect” and in no way do they reflect a lack of creativity. It is her affection and adoration of these and other facets and genres of cinema as a medium of impacting the human condition that come through in Main Hoon Naa. [User review on IMDB.com]

****

Debutante director Farah Khan has paid a handsome tribute to everyone and everything related to movies like Hrishikesh Mukherjee, Nasir Hussain, RD Burman, Yash Chopra, Karan Johar, Sholay, Matrix , and the entire success formula of the 70s and 80s. She also spoofs the ma-ke-haath-ke-aloo parathe bit, dream sequences, Yash Chopra kinda romance (yeah, she pays a tribute to it and yet spoofs it) so on and so forth. Everything that was super successful twenty years ago finds its way in here. The result is full blast entertainment – the kind you expected from Manmohan Desai and Nasir Hussain . [User review on Mouthshut.com]

****

If Main Hoon Na reminds you of the commercial hit cinema of the 70s…well, that’s exactly what Farah Khan set out to achieve. It doesn’t preach. It doesn’t go by logic. But it’s an entertainer all the way, much like the Nasir Husain and Manmohan Desai’s masala potboilers of yore. [IndiaToday.com.au review]

Got it folks?

Just replace “Main Hoon Na” in the above snippets with”Om Shanti Om” and you could very well be reading stuff written in 2007!

Also I didn’t know that Punjabis in the 70s spoke with a Gujju accent! Why else would an Om Prakash Makhija insist on saying “Thenks” instead of “Thanks”.

Also, spare me this collective ‘awakening’ to spoofs please!
Messers Farah and Shah Rukh Khan have neither invented nor revived spoofs as an entertainment form. Not in Om Shanti Om at least**!

In Hollywood, spoofs on popular movies and characters is a genre by itself. Movies like Hotshots, Naked Gun, Austin Powers, and Scary Movie were so successful that their producers established a complete franchise with their sequels! Closer home, the late I.S. Johar would spoof popular actors of the times by producing movies with their lookalikes. Then there were B-grade movies like Ramgarh Ke Sholay (not to be confused with Ramgopal Varma’s :-p) Nagesh Kukoonoor’s Bollywood Calling was a more intelligently made spoof on the Bombay film industry.

However, in India the best spoofs on cinema have been made in its sibling medium — television. I have seen some of the craziest and irreverently fantastic spoofs on Fully Faltu on MTV, Ek Do Teen on Doordarshan (directed by Sachin), and The Great Indian Comedy Show on Star One. Look at this example below.

** For me the closest Shah Rukh Khan ever came to spoofing was when he played Devdas :-p

Shah Rukh finally gets an item number right!
After delivering cold turkeys in Kaal (title song) and Shakti (Ishq Kameena), Shah Rukh Khan finally delivers a winner with Dard-e-disco. Every bit the dude superstar. But any guesses why a miner’s helmet? A small step in the AB-been-there-SRK-done-that series — and it’s Kala Paththar this time? :-p

Look at the irony — poet lyricist Javed Akhtar writes ‘Dard-e-disco‘ , while music director Vishal wrote the lyrics for ‘Aankhon mein teri, ajab si adaayen hain‘.

The cutest ghost since Casper!
This is perhaps the toughest part for me. For the last so many years I have carried on a single-minded crusade against plastic-haters — the unthinking, uninformed, uneducated critics of the world’s most beautiful woman. How I have always maintained that Aishwarya Rai is so unbelievably beautiful that she borders on the abnormal! How I have debated that with such perfect looks it is criminal to expect her to act.

But after seeing Deepika in Om Shanti Om, especially the final scene where the ghost Shanti flashes a dimpled smile while a tear drop trickles down her cheek, all I can say is: bye bye Ms. Aishwarya Rai, may you find bliss in matrimony! There’s more to the world than your green eyes!

Anybody tell me which is Deepika Padukone’s next film?

12 thoughts on “Finally my 10 cents on Om Shanti Om

  1. I liked Om Shanti Om in parts…

    most parts actually..

    But I think it was still a bit overrated…Shah Rukh’s mind boggling publicity made it the biggest hit of the decade..

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