Just watched Spiderman-3 in a ‘paid preview’ show at the Sahara Mall PVR in Gurgaon. There is something fundamentally ‘deflating’ about a ‘paid preview’. Now contrast this with Spiderman (1) which I had seen in a ‘real’ Thursday premiere show in Mumbai! (And where I got my 15 seconds of prime time presence on Star News — my sound bites being sandwiched between celebrity-speak and vox populi.)
A quick round up.
Extraordinary action and thrills — living up to the Spiderman 1 & 2 standards.
I had like a 100 deja vu moments. Read on… (Spoiler alert!)
Spiderman gets a split-personality. Dr. Jekyl (with the famous red and blue Spiderman vardi) and Mr. Spyde (who in black spandex is un-vardi. Oops I mean unworthy!)
The villain — actually one of the villains — a special-effects marvel, is of triple parentage. Wait that’s not part of the plot. What I mean is that he has the looks of The Hulk, physical composition of The Mummy and the size of Godzilla!
A bit of Abhimaan thrown in. Professional jealousy leading to (pre)marital discord. She resents his popularity.
She even resents him publicly kissing the ‘other girl’. She says, “How could you? That was OUR kiss.” That “OUR kiss” of course referring to the famous scene from the first movie where Spiderman hangs upside down while she pulls his mask down to do the needful. So it is not only in India that a public kiss (peck, whatever) between Richard Gere and Shilpa Shetty causes so much unrest! But notice that in America the emphasis is on getting the priorities right. Pull the mask sufficiently — to only expose the lips. Why bother with frivolities like look into the eyes and all that jazz(baat).
The American onlookers reaction to anyone who’s perched on some high-up spot (which happens a lot in Spiderman) reminded me of the “arrey bhai yeh suicide kya hota hai?” “jab angrez log martey hain toh usko suicide kehte hain” from Sholay when Dharmendra climbs onto the water tank!
A bit of Raj Kapoor’s Sangam — friends in love with the same girl. A bit of Qurbani (and 20,000 other movies) — one of the friends interrupting with his own torso, the trajectory of a projectile (bullet, knife, blades, poles etc.) aimed at the other friend! And as a befitting finale, dying in the lap of his friends after a refusing-to-let-go-off-footage-crunching dying speech!
A Ramu kaka benevolent equivalent who knows some khaandaan ka raaz that sorts out some misunderstanding. Ramu kaka, if only you had opened your mouth earlier — Spiderman-2 needn’t have been made!
One of the characters loses his memory and then regains it later — both transactions (losing and regaining) contributing to the plot! Vintage Hindi cinema, right?
A perennially angry man’s anger management routine being the cause for some comic moments. Munabhai MBBS anyone? A little bit of Lage Raho Munnabhai — with villains saying “apun ko tereko sorry bolne ka hai“! (I am not quoting, just capturing the sentiment!)
There’s a scene completely lifted from Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge (DDLJ). Remember the song ‘Ruk ja…‘? Here Shah Rukh is played by Spider Khan, oops, Spiderman. There we had a Simran — Kajol. Here we have a simmerin’ Kirsten Dunst. (Simmerin’, Simran sounds similar, right?) The song and dance begins with the hero unexpectedly displaying his nimble finger work on the piano keys. And the rest of the dance is to annoy/rile the heroine. I won’t be surprised if Farah Khan has actually ghost-choreographed this song! Actually I would be surprised. Else either Farah’s PR, or the Indian media (not much separating the two, right?) would have left no stone unturned in shoving this news down our throats! Remember how they went berserk after her Shakira tryst?
Again DDLJ — remember SRK talking to Simran’s mom in a simranizing tone, oops, sermonizing tone? “Meri maa ne mujhe sikhaaya thha. Zindagi mein do raste chun sakte ho. Ek aasaan. Ek mushkil. Blah. Blah” That is the gyaan from this movie too — we are what we choose to be!
I left the movie with a heavy sense of DDLJ vu!