This is why I love the johar chopra itsallaboutlovingyourfamily brigade. Their ability to completely distort relations till you have no clue what being real means. Honestly, watching a skilled contortionist wouldn’t be half as thrilling. For those of you who have seen stepmom and cried, you can watch this and guffaw. Kajol as the ever suffering divorced mom of three kids is someone I couldn’t summon a shred of sympathy for. What a bizarre character! Stepmom was about dispelling the myth of a wicked stepmom and replacing her with a genuine person. But it never attempted to suggest that the ex-wife and girlfriend should now dance atop tables and find bonhomie! But then I guess from Bollywood’s POV, isme drama kidhar hai? Nobody is SACRIFICING anything!! A mother dying and leaving her three kids whom she has spent her life caring for is scarcely something that will arouse paroxysms of weepiness in the saas-bahu watching auntyjis. Still, Bollywood wanted to make this out-of-cultural-context movie by “tweaking” it to Indian tastes. Instead they just mauled it completely.
So the Husband, on hearing of his wife’s terminal disease, promptly dumps his girlfriend whom he is said to be in love with, to come and live with his wife. Offering support by being there is so bland you see. The girlfriend is one step ahead in this sacrifice ka imtihaan, and she smugly tells him – “Agar main tumhari jagah hoti toh main bhi aise hi karti”. Checkmate. The wife, not to be outdone, suggests that while she has her children’s past, her children’s future now lies with the girlfriend. When the girlfriend says that she is not the “mom-type”, the all-knowing motherindia pooh-poohs her dismissively saying every woman just is. Na ri Na ri …………….but who cares. This is pop-corn fun at its best.
The extraordinary situation is a first for Hindi cinema surely. Now that is what a situational comedy really means. If the audience did not seem so stunned (I think a lot of them were weeping and only very few were chuckling naughtily at the wrong places), I would have clapped and ceetee maaroed and thrown coins at the screen when all those tears were rolling down all those stereotype character’s faces. You have all the johar chopra accessories – pretty houses (pogen pohl kitchen FYI), very pretty clothes, scenic surroundings. Aur kya chahiye? There is comedy, there is rona dhona, there is a fashion show. Total family entertainment.
And really, you must pay special attention to the Jailhouse rock version that kajol sings. Hello ji let’s dance. Welcome to panjuland!
Banana Yoshimoto - Goodbye Tsugumi
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