The dirty things women do
While most Hollywood-inspired Bollywood films revolve around a wafer-thin plot and break box office records through star power and a chartbuster song, some take realism as a way of life and weave an intrinsic tale around it. Milan Luthria’s The Dirty Picture does neither. It is neither a realistic film focussing on the life of Silk Smitha nor an inspired film. It hogs around taking glimpses from the lives of celebrities including Marilyn Monroe and ends as if the film had nothing else to say. Of course, it didn’t have anything else to say. The film was all about the rise and fall of an exotic actress and that alone fits in the screen.
Can Vidya Balan act? She sure has the looks that was first noticed in Parineeta and then in Guru. Apart from Paa and the hysteric Ishqiya, was there any other film that saw her act? When you play an item dancer, sex appeal alone doesn’t help. You’ve got to be revolting and impulsive. Balan gets the impulsive part right as her dialogues are force-fed with expletives. Luthria has Balan cavorting around lush greens and a field of oranges exposing every part of her body. The guy seated next to me joked “this is a film that should be seen in 3D, not Ra.One!”
We also have Naseeruddin Shah who despite the dyed hair and makeup is easy to be spotted as an old man. We’ve had enough training spotting good old Rajnikanth, that aging cannot escape our eyes. For Shah, this is redemption of his youth. Did he desire to do a film with Smitha back in the eighties?
Tusshar Kapoor arrives as the actor who is least expected to act. All we want him to do is sit in a corner and admire Balan’s beauty. He does the same and often tends to his 80s-like moustache. Emraan Hashmi seems to be improving as an actor. His portrayal of artistic filmmaker Abraham is his best performance ever.
The naivety Balan brings onscreen hangs on to your mind like chewing gum stuck on a shoe. With actors taking the glam route thinking that’ll win them critical praise, I wonder how things are going to be with Bollywood’s glam dolls. Will they have to deglamourize to take the critical praise, or are they like everyone else giving a run for our money.
The Dirty Picture locks horns when it comes to feminine discrimination in cinema. This film believes that women like Silk Smitha chose to discriminate themselves for money, power and undaunted fame. The debate continues…