It is 1 o’clock at night. I have just returned from my first night show of a movie in a year because the world was hollering about Zindagi na Milege Dobaara since a week and I thought if I won’t catch it now, I would soon probably be gasping for air or something or be labelled an outcast and deported to Alaska.
But as I was returning I was also pondering over my exact feelings about the movie. Of course there was a feel good but then there is also a tad bit of disappointment somewhere. That was also introspected and I came up with my very own bullet list again:
1. We actually had centre seats 6, 7, 8 (my nephew had also gone with my beloved and me) but the stupid seat guy made us sit at 3, 4, 5 and then came a fat aunty ji, some ten minutes late in the movie with two gawky guys dangling by her sides, made us all stand and create a ruckus and probably got us cussed under the breath by those seated behind us and despite me asserting that she’s seated her big butt on our space, they eventually gobbled up our seats and we had to settle back on her corner ones. Not that I was cribbing about those seats before, beloved was-but then the aftermath conclusion is I hate being bullied into giving what is rightly mine for no rhyme or reason. So bad start and also a nudge to beloved to remind him the umpteenth time that it is great that he is so super accommodating and all but there are times in life when he has to give up the ‘chalta hain’ attitude that surfaces EVERY where. I tell him people are using him for his niceness and he only says ‘Chalo, kisse ke kaam to aa raha hoon!’ Grrrr-believe me, it is not so “awwww...” every time.
2. Facebook was screaming and reeking with praises of the flick and how it was changing lives-some scores of very flattering updates were about the movie. I remember a cute blogger friend also updating this as her status. “Those who liked Delhi Belly and not ZNMD are sick.”
I did not dislike it really but just to be sure, I took the thermometer into my mouth to check if I was-98.4 it says and along with that in asterisk, are the invisible words that only I can perceive- ‘You are over healthy, could you please do something about it?’
I guess over expectations nipped the outcome a bit. Lesson learnt also that one must watch movies that we look forward to before the reviews flow in because you might not read the movie buzz section in the newspaper or avoid the pompous critics on television giving their ratings but you can run, you deny but you can’t escape the reviewers on Fb-count me as one of them too.
Zindagi Na Milege Dobaara:
Firstly, why such an excruciatingly painful title Madam Zoya Akhtar? I mean agreed there have been worst-Kabhi Alvida Na Kehne, Kuch Kuch Hota Hain, Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam it’s now 1. 19 a.m. please forgive me for my tired memory and hence not coming up with more of such obnoxious names, I shall devote a post on this some other time to make up. But fortunately for those flicks the names kinda gelled well with the mouth. Zindagi-makes me just stop short at that...“Zindagi” for ZNMD is too weird an abbreviation and a very inconvenient for the lips.
Please don’t get me wrong here my friends- I have nothing against wholesome family entertainers-they’ve built our cinema on that. Look at The Johars and The Chopras achieving cult statuses by selling larger than life dreams. You come out hoping for a Raj to bump into or imagining flowers blooming at every encounter to turn it into love at first sight and then dance on well choreographed chartbuster numbers in Swiss locales, wearing heavily designed outfits at your sangeet. I never thought I’d be saying this but I now think-Isn’t it time we grew up?
I mean agreed ZNMD sounds such a fabulous proposition if it could really come true. If all men could go to Spain or even a poor old Singapore for bachelors party and then bump into beautiful scuba divers and have one night stands with good girls and with no strings attached! If we could meet up school friends after years and get together for such longish time as though nothing’s changed! If we could just dive into water or jump off a plane or run before a mad bull which I feel many do anyways in this part of Uttar Pradesh with rampant street animals making a go at your rear side at their whims and fancies and feel that we are living again. If only we could just as easily turn down marriage proposals without caring a damn about the feelings of those involved especially family and become Runaway Brides and grooms! Yes, we’d be kings of wishful thinking!
The Times of India recently informed of a study that revealed that romance novels lead to unstable mental health for women making them either over-the-top expectant or wanton to materialize such as they read, in their own mundane lives. So I guess it is time we told the movie makers to stop messing with our heads and please don’t give us larger than life ideas that seldom see the daylight. I mean till we craved for houses and families like Kabhi Khushi Kabhi Ghum it was alright-please don’t make us yearn for a life like what you show here! On a personal note perhaps I am also a bit bitter because I have always wanted to live like that-be on the move, new experiences around every corner-may be this mad post is just a response to the ‘sour grapes’ syndrome of the fox who is tempted by the grapes on the vine and then raises a snooty nose in disdain when it realises that they are beyond its reach.
Then I am also pondering that maybe it is the small city deficiency syndrome-may be life is such in metros of Delhi, Mumbai and the likes. But then we also have friends in these places that are equally stuck up in the grinds of the everyday earning of bread and butter that I suppose they strive to be served in gold plates adorned with precious diamonds, for their work schedules are so maddening that enjoying what they are reaping is postponed till some other time. Enough is never enough!
The movie-ZNMD was less of a movie and more of an experience, a journey you made with them. Of course I laughed and smiled and ogled at the three gorgeous and sexiest men in the Indian film industry and wanted to be Laila at many points yes, the smooch point topping the list. But then I also felt it all was too beyond our reach. I mean what could possibly have been the outcome of life for the trio after such a road trip-back to the grind or can they afford to party like that forever? How can you keep living Zindagi when zindagi makes 101 demands out of you to slog to survive? We all love holidays, we all love to be free without responsibilities, do things that make ME happy at the end of the day and period. But is it really possible? To just be with no strings attached?
It’s not that people like those don’t exist who live up their lives-they do, but their number is too miniscule to want everyone to be and behave like them. Possibly like a rare ‘Salman’-who gives up his obligations to an unborn child and his unwed mother for he never really grew up to want to grow up? And then also-do Hrithik, Farhan and Abhay really look as though they were out of college just four years back? Despite all their hotness, please! There were many shades of Dil Chahta Hai and The Hangover there and also some other movies which I could not put my finger on. I loved Farhan’s recital of poetry, loved the Senorita song and ached to be buried in the tomatoes too. And as far as the lip lock was concerned-we’ve seen Hrithik do better- remembering here the Dhoom kiss with Aishwarya that was oh-so-awesome!
On the other hand was Delhi Belly, which I thoroughly enjoyed. Again male bonding formed the crux with three guys as the protagonists. I read many reviews condemning the toilet humour and offensive language yet there was a novelty attached to it. The unique blend of English and Hindi that did not look artificial or put on in anyway-no songs, no intervals, no pretence, no dreams-just shit happening as it really does happen in actuality sometimes. There were genuinely moments when I laughed my head off my seat.
Despite all my aversions to crassness in real life, if you ask me which is closer home to me-I’d say there are more chances of me finding myself in trouble with the mafia and hear the worst of F and all the rest of the alphabet words than finding myself with a sexy finance man, who’d be ready to give up his job to go away with me to Morocco and the likes and sing Senorita there for the rest of our lives. I know what you are thinking-is ke liye tereko Katrina types hona padega-but then even hypothetically it is a weird possibility. I also know that you are going to tell me ‘It is just a movie-itna sochte nahi hain’-but you know, one of those days when a movie makes you-THINK!
After having blah-blahed about it all for three pages and still having you hear, let me also say this-our opinions of movies are formed not just by the content and merit of the movie itself but what frame of mind we are in when we venture to dekho them. I remember a couple friend and us went once to see this suspense thriller by the actor who played Meheer No. 2 in the television serial ‘Kyonki Saas bhi kabhi Bahu thi’ and laughed our guts out at the ham scenes and blatant and obnoxious over acting and omg-dialogues that were dissected and imitated-it remains one of my most enjoyable movie experiences ever! I don’t know what made me write a movie review for I generally don’t. Just that ZNMD makes you wanna be free and when you can’t, you wanna tell the world it is an impractical and bad idea! ;-)