An Open Letter to Yash Raj & ilk…

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Posted on September 16th, 2007 in Features, Movies

Dear Yash Raj Camp and your ilk,

I write to you as an avid film-goer and Indian film fan. Having grown up with Bollywood I have the utmost fascination for this particular cinema. I love the songs. I love the dances. I even love the ridiculous set of rules self-imposed by the industry. However, in recent years, your films are becoming disappointing and ridiculous. I do not have, at present, the time to go into the details of every flawed film, so I will give you a general overview.

My first concern is your choice of designers. What in the world makes you return to Manish Malhotra? The man can’t dress himself in broad daylight, let alone actresses. Prime example of his disastrous ideas would be his work in Kabhi Alvida Na Kehna for Preity and Rani. Preity’s character is supposed to be a fashion editor, but she looks far more like a scruffy prostitute — please watch The Devil Wears Prada for inspiration. You will find that low neck tops and short skirts need to be classy instead of brassy.

Rani’s character is my other concern. For a woman who is supposed to be a low-profile teacher, the make-up and the clothes suggest otherwise. Her look during the end of the film was somewhat better, where she has little or no make-up and her hair is straight (which should have actually been worn in a pony tail). You even made the boys look bad. SRK’s ridiculous hair and choice of glasses work when he is at home. He is in a film. I understand that your world is glamorous and chiffon-clad for the most part, but let’s try and make it a little more realistic and well-suited for his actual character.

My second concern is the inconsistency in characters and storyline. In KANK there is a sequence when Maya gets all dramatic because she thinks her husband is having an affair. Then, when her husband points out that she got jealous and dramatic, she tells him she would have stopped, thought about it, and would have rationally questioned him. I think you contradicted yourself. You also did this with Dev’s character, who instead of being acerbic and sarcastic at his wife’s suggested affair, becomes a drama queen. People don’t behave out of character, randomly. I am all for melodrama. Hell I am the Queen of all that is Melodramatic, but I don’t believe anyone behaves out of character unless they are schizophrenic or suffer from multiple personality disorder.

Maya’s character also had OCD. As someone who has OCD, I assure you we do not behave the way Maya does. Well we may, but we aren’t quite so ridiculous about it. Because OCD for the most part is about control, cleanliness plays a huge role in it. We tend to consider make-up quite disgusting and a germ fest. We also could never be convinced to put our hand in a trash can, nor could we ever revert from our OCD ways. We can’t do that even on medication.

My third concern is the choice of choreographers. In Kabhi Khushi Kabhi Gham Kareena Kapoor looked like an idiot, courtesy of Manish Malhotra. To add to that, you hired some moron to do the choreography and Kareena just came across as overweight and incapable of dancing. (I’m not saying she isn’t a great dancer because she is better than most). You also seem to be a huge fan of using Farah Khan who is not only repetitive but downright untalented. Rock ‘n’ Roll Soniye was awful as was Where’s the Party Tonight – songs with such great potential, lost in the deep abyss of a talentless pool. Hire Hegde. He may have an attitude problem but he is talented.

My fourth concern is your obsession with the ‘white’ community. For some strange reason they end up becoming back up dancers, the source of many jokes, or incapable of understanding your culture. In K3G, you used words like ‘cookies’ to associate with the British, when in fact it is American. You also made fun of characters like Mrs. Sprightly and the nurse in KANK. I am going to explain this again: most British people aren’t like Americans, and if you are going to make fun of us or our culture, could you at least make fun of the right culture? NB: White people can’t dance to the nuances of Indian dancing for the most part, case-in-point JBJ’s title song — all the dancers looked very awkward. Please don’t do that again.

These are just some of the concerns I have. I would like to list more but as it stands, I don’t think you could make these changes. At least not in my lifetime.

Thanking you for your time.

Yours sincerely,

An avid film-goer who wishes to redeem Bollywood to the days of Dil To Pagal Hai

Kuch Toh Bolo!

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