Posts tagged aditi
By Taran Adarsh, October 8, 2010 – 08:29 IST
The highpoint of Hrishikesh Mukherjee’s movies was the simplicity with which he narrated the story of ordinary people. Soaked in humour with an undercurrent of emotions, the films made by Hrishi-da are fresh to this date, inspiring the present-day film-makers as well. DO DOONI CHAAR, directed by debutant Habib Faisal, could easily pass off as a Hrishikesh Mukherjee film. A simple plot involving simpletons and straight out of life situations makes this one an extremely watchable experience. The casting of Rishi and Neetu Kapoor in pivotal parts is, without doubt, the icing on the cake.
|BY BOLLYWOOD HUNGAMA.COM
Come to think of it, DO DOONI CHAAR is a complete contrast to what’s being made these days. It’s far from glossy, the setting is a middle class house in a tiny colony of Delhi, the characters are far from classy, the problems are very, very real and yes, there’s a message towards the final moments of the film. But it’s these factors that make DO DOONI CHAAR a notch above the commonplace. Most importantly, this film has soul, which most films lack these days.
Final word? The life of the ordinary is presented most extra-ordinarily here. DO DOONI CHAAR is a little gem that should not be missed!
Life can be tough for a man who teaches at a school for a living, lives in a tiny flat in Delhi and is coping with the double digit inflation rates and single digit increments in his salary. Add to that, a teenage daughter, a fast-track son and a wife who loves the good life. The life of the Duggals is passing by in simply taking care of the basics. Until one day, they decide to dream.
Their ticket to dreaming comes in the form of a wedding invitation. What follows is a journey of chaos, realizations, calculations, confrontations and bonding. This crazy Duggals will fight it out at home [and the neighborhood] for what they think is a ‘good buy’ for the family: a four-wheeler.
DO DOONI CHAAR works for a number of reasons, the prime reason being its tight and interesting script which abounds in real-life situations that have been presented with utmost conviction. Desperately wanting to possess a four-wheeler, the story unfolds beautifully and the characters, each of them, only enhance the impact. Even the individual stories of the two kids are wonderfully presented.
Any hiccups? No really, but the pre-climax tends to get unbelievable when the free for all takes place in a fast food joint and the chase that ensues. However, the conclusion carries a strong message, which registers a strong impact.
Habib Faisal is a director to watch. His writing is the highpoint and his handling of the subject is top notch. He has executed the light moments as well as subtle emotions amazingly well. The songs are smartly placed in the narrative, with the title track topping the list.
Rishi Kapoor is the lifeline of the film, he delivers a sparkling performance. The veteran has delivered incredible performances in the past and his work in DO DOONI CHAAR is at par with those terrific portrayals. Neetu Kapoor is admirable. A complete natural, she adds so much to a scene, which otherwise would’ve fallen flat had a lesser actor been cast in that role. More than anything else, it’s an experience watching this real-life jodi together after a hiatus. The two kids – Archit and Aditi – are excellent in their respective roles. Akhilendra Mishra is first-rate. Supriya Shukla is fantastic.
On the whole, DO DOONI CHAAR is a delight to watch. Just don’t miss this one!
Meena Iyer (MUMBAI MIRROR; October 03, 2010)
If you join the dots from S Shankar’s first film Gentleman (1993) to his latest Robot (2010) you’ll notice a common thread. For one, he has the finger on the pulse of the mainstream cinegoer. Plus, he knows how to embellish his work with gloss and grandeur at a scale still unimaginable by most filmmakers.
Real Indian palaces, heritage sights, Machu-Pichu, seven wonders of the world…he’s exploited them all long before Bollywood found their address.
But to grant the devil his due - his movies are not just special-effects ridden; there is a definite plot with a message. Also, the budgets get more phenomenal each time.
His first blockbuster Gentleman (1993) (with its iconic Chik paku raile number that introduced the world to Prabhu Deva’s dancing skills) brought a new style of filmmaking but his 90s protagonist is just a different avatar of Bollywood 70s phenomenon - Salim-Javed’s ‘angry young man’.
Quite like Amitabh Bachchan, Shankar’s hero has invariably been taking on the system, film after film. But where he leaves his contemporaries way behind is his technical wizardry. A fact just reiterated by his latest Robot (Endhiran, Tamil).
Comparisons to West
Two days after the release of the Rs 150 crore film, Kollywood’s Shankar is drawing comparisons to none other than James Cameron.
Both are August born; both spare no expense when it comes to their budgets and cinematic vision. And quite like Avatar, the highest worldwide grosser, Robot too has opened to a thunderous start.
The filmmaker himself remains remarkably modest about being “India’s Cameron quotient.” “Stop pulling my leg,’’ he says. “I don’t need any more spotlight on me than that is already there,” he laughs.
But with an enviable track record of seven of the biggest hits in Tamil cinema, Shankar is on the verge of rewriting history with his eight one. Trade sources confirm that Endhiran, has broken the record of the highest box office collections for a Tamil film - the film, they say, will cross the Rs 250 crore mark.
Decoding the director
So what’s Shankar all about? Born in a fairly affluent family in Kumbakonam, Tamil Nadu, he worked as a quality control supervisor till the movie bug bit him. On a telephone call he still introduces himself as, “Hi I’m Shankar, the director,’’ and when you incredulously ask him why he says that, he replies, “my films and I are twins, joined at the hip.’’
But while his on-screen heroes are the robust Robinhood-rascala amalgamation, Shankar himself is the anti-thesis. He’s more like a quiet mouse on set, rather than like a megalomaniac wielding the megaphone. And he lets his ADs have a field day liaising with Bollywood beauties and the crew.
But quiet demeanor apart, with his baseball cap and huge sun-shades, Shankar is the boss. He has worked with the legends of Tamil cinema - Kamal Haasan (Indian) and Rajnikanth (Sivaji-The Boss, Endhiran-Robot) but is neither in awe of his subject nor does he doesn’t brook any interference.
As he says, “Rajnikanth is the ultimate for any film-maker. His demi-God status aside, he’s the most obedient actor I’ve worked with. He doesn’t leave the set once he reports for work…and he still maintains a child-like curiosity about everything related to a film.’’
What makes him work
One of his assistant directors says the secret of his success lies in his engineering background - he goes about fixing each nut and bolt step by step while filmmaking. Robot was originally planned five years ago with Priety Zinta and Kamal Hasan.
The monies didn’t drop at that point. It was then revived with Shah Rukh Khan. Story goes when Shankar went to Orange County (with his wife, son, daughters Aditi and Aishwarya and team of writers) to give SRK a detailed narration, he had every colour scheme, every frame and other minute details worked out. SRK was visibly impressed but the deal fell through and the Rajni came on board.
He is also a tough cookie to please. A stickler for punctuality, years ago, when Manisha Koirala (Indian, Mudalvan) walked in just a few minutes late on a couple of occasions, he had turned shades of purple. And one has seen him lapse into complete silence after he and the Nepali actress had a slight altercation about a scene.
Of course all this doesn’t compromise his work relations. The next morning, he sorted the matter with Manisha and shooting progressed at a brisk pace.
A simple man
In personal life he’s a plain-dresser. Though he arrives in a high-end automobile (he earlier drove a Merc but after his association with SRK, switched to a BMW) he has no shenanigans attached to his name. He’s the kind of guy who has no hesitation to eat food at roadside joints, goes about his work-home-work routine and shuns parties save for the occasional awards function.
But his budgets are the opposite. Ask him about why his budgets always get more prominence than his reviews, and he says, “I don’t know the intention of the press when it highlights the budgets of movies. In my movies the money has always been well-spent. In Robot, the animatronics used is of the same calibre of The Jurassic Park, Terminator and Avatar. And since it was also done at the Stan Winston Studios in the US, the SFX cost huge money. I only put my money where my mouth is. Robot needed high-end technical effects. If Indian cinema had a wider release, then I would have spent at least half of what Avatar did on SFX. However, I’ve always believed in bringing in something new via technology in every film of mine. And it is because of the novelty element that my films have a repeat value.”
“I think it’s wrong to talk about my movie budgets constantly. There is an equal amount of blood and sweat invested in the effort. The film took two years to make and we had a huge foreign crew involved. Every member of my unit and the foreign crew has worked so hard on this film that the money pales in comparison to the effort put in.’’
The journey ahead
Fair enough, but one wonders whether it is personal angst that is responsible for the Robinhood characters he writes. Says Shankar, “I’m a common man. And I’m fully aware of what is happening around me. As a journalist you have a pen that you use to highlight injustice. As a director, I have another medium to do exactly the same.’’
But the films he patronises are vastly different from the ones he makes. A self-confessed Mani Ratnam admirer, the other three films that have left an indelible mark on him are Ashutosh Gowarikar’s Lagaan, Farhan Akhtar’s Dil Chahta Hai and Raj Kumar Hirani’s 3 Idiots. “When I’m in between scripts the only things I make time for are watching movies,” he says.
And though his movies leave gadget freaks gasping, he’s technologically challenged in real life. “All the technology is reserved for my films. I don’t even know what hidden features my cell-phone has,’’ he laughs.
As he gets into his vehicle to visit the local Chennai theatres for reactions, he adds, “People want to know what I’m making next. I usually have some idea stashed away in my head for my next film even before the earlier one has wrapped.
In 17 years I have directed 10 films. I guess I have been prolific. But, this time around I want to wait for the hangover of Robot to subside. What I really need at this point is to splash some water on my face, clear my head and go for a long drive and feel the breeze blow.’’
|(L) A still from Boys (R) Aparichit|
|(L) Sivaji-The boss (R) Robot|
• Would you prefer to be sexy rather than the girl-next-door?
Yes, of course. But right now I am very comfortable in my space. I love the work I get and I’m not in a hurry to grow up. Aditi in Jaane Tu… was aggressive; my character in Chance pe Dance (CPD) is milder, calmer and has a sweet, feminine side. Yet both characters are girls-next-door.
But wouldn’t you like to play a sex bomb?
I don’t know whether I can, it depends on the script. It is something I haven’t thought about. I’d rather be spunky than sexy. I like being schoolgirl sexy, like the ‘naughty’ sexy.
• Given a chance to hit on your co-star, who would it be – Shahid, Harman or John?
You can’t expect me to choose. And now that CPD is releasing, it has to be Shahid. (laughs)
• Have you ever made the first move in a relationship?
No, never. I would never do that. I would probably smile, but I would never make the first move on a guy for sure.
• Has a girl ever made a pass at you?
No, never! (laughs)
• When did you start working? Your first salary?
I was 15, and I got it for my first ad. I earned around Rs 10, 000.
• And your first screen test?
It was an advertisement with Mr Bachchan. I tested for it at five in the evening and got selected at 10 the same night. And the next thing I knew, I was doing it. Yippie.
• Tell us some dance moves you like.
I like the signature move of the song Papapa (CPD), because I think it is something that everyone can do. I love what Shahid has done in Pump it up. I think he has really, really rocked. For me dancing is going mad, letting down your hair and having a blast.
• How about salsa and jive?
Oh, I would love to do salsa. I am Christian, so I have done a lot of jiving and I love the co-ordinated lifts, but you need a terrific partner to do it.
• Your last chance to admit whether you’re single or not
Ya, ya, ya! I am single
• And ready to mingle?
I find that extremely cheesy, but I am single.
• If you could date a Hollywood actor, who would it be?
My all-time favourite star is Tom Cruise, but I would choose Brad Pitt for a date.
• Do you update yourself about fashion and read about the latest trends?
I do. But for me it is more like a jeans and tee or shorts and tee. I love white shrits and denims. I love very simple normal stuff, but if I have to make an effort, definitely I would consult people and talk to them.
• Have you ever had a wardrobe malfunction?
No. I am quite particular. I like everything fixed up and proper.
|Pic: Satish malavade|