I normally don’t watch Karan Johar movies.
A few years ago, probably after K3G, I came to the conclusion that sugar-coated homilies which alternated with glycerine-histronishowers, are really not my fare of choice- I prefer something a little more pungent. So Karan Johar extravaganzas got relegated to the watch-the-version-on-cable-if-you-are-masochistically-inclined category of movies.
Yesterday however, I made an exception and went to watch “Wake up Sid”. Why?
Because I was in the mood for a movie and the choice was between – Wake up and Do Knot Disturb (KJo marginally beats the race – and well, one can at least be assured of some picturesque locales). And partly because the SIL’s husband had raved and gushed about the movie – and more specifically Bombay (Mind you, he might have spent all of twelve days in Bombay, he doesn’t know Hindi, and he has never stayed in India). So I thought it behoved me, as a dyed-in-the-wool Bombay snob (can one say the B-word??) to see what the fuss was all about.
Let me put a caveat now. The following is NOT a review – but is rather a random compilation of thoughts which were crossing my mind as I watched it. For those of you who don’t know, it is supposed to be the so-called coming-of-age movie. Bade baap ka bigda beta suddenly discovers his calling due to the love of a good (sic) woman blah blah blah.
Frankly, the movie left me cold.
I couldn’t bring myself to whip up much sympathy with the rather parasitic Sid or any empathy for his lack-of-focus, what I shall do with my life existentialistic angst unlike say, a Lakshya. In the latter, one actually relieves the same growing pains of cluelessness, lack of ambition or what have you. This what-next malaise was one which did plague my generation at least (not sure that its equally relevant to kids today who seem to be hugely goal-oriented.) Lakshya captured that beautifully – and the build up to the climax (replete with all the self-loathing and contempt) and the subsequent hope-affirming transition resonated with a lot of clueless folks. In Sid, this metamorphosis from the irresponsible lazy caterpillar to the butterfly is just far too glib.
I don’t think there was anything particularly wrong with Ranbir – but I thought that, to use a very apposite Konkani saying “he lacked a little salt”. It was mostly a pretty face, acting the role –NOT a good actor living the role. Could be inexperience, could be genes.
Konkona of course, I find hugely annoying in principle – so I can barely be a unbiased reviewer. ’Cept for looking old enough to be his aunt (see I am not saying Ma. Hmpf) , and coming across as quite a sanctimonious so-and-so. Also, after Luck by chance, Life in a Metro, Page 3 – isn’t she getting a tad predictable?
What did amuse me however was how quickly and conveniently both the protagonists discover a) their calling b) and get fame-glory-money in their calling without having to go through the pains and grind of us lesser mortals for people in the corporate world to even realize we exist (I KNOW it’s a movie – but seriously, the really pat way in which the whole thing was handled, trivialized almost, was amateur).
Having said all this, I really wouldn’t mind LIVING in a KJo movie- this fantastic dream-world, where life is all spun candy, and lucky breaks just happen, where chotu makes your morning tea , and the only work you really have to do is be in love.