Sunday, April 16, 2006

I really want to like Govinda, but, so far, no dice: Chalo Ishq Ladaaye

Well-intentioned cheese is usually right up my alley. But yet I can't quite come to terms with Govinda. I don't get him. I read that he's a great dancer, but I'm not sure I've seen it for myself - there's a scene in this movie, for example, when he and Rani seem to be trying to see how slowly they can do that thing you do with your arms if you're in a conga line but not holding the waist of the person in front of you. "Tujko Hi Dulhan," spangled with red, orange, and gold, stood out for me as the kind of scene I look to Bollywood for because so much of the other dancing was the two of them trying to do exactly the same movements at exactly the same time in lackluster settings. Govinda is fine, but he's got nothing on any of the people named in the dance discussion we had a few posts back. Anyway, I don't really have anything against Govinda, but I don't have anything for him, either.

This was one of those movies that looks a lot older than it really is. I spent a good half hour weighing recent-ish fashions against the Bollywood costume wrinkle in the space-time continuum and came up with 2000. But no, 2002. That's what Govinda does to movies.

Anyway. I've never seen Throw Momma from the Train or Strangers on a Train, so instead I'll give my usual list of unconnected points.

  • In the world of filmi reality, Puppu is found delightful for behavior of someone who should be arrested with all due speed
  • imdb didn't list where this was filmed, and I'm fascinated by some of the architecture - along the river, the street where Puppu tells his rollerblading girlfriend to get back on the train, the complex where the bad cop explains his evil plot - all of these were gorgeous and I want to add them to my list of places to visit someday. And they're an interesting contrast to most of the shots of San Francisco, which are utterly unremarkable. If you're going to bother to teleport to California, choose more wisely.
  • A remarkably restrained Johny Lever, whose only annoyingness was his lines, so not even his fault!
  • Govinda and Zohra Seghal prepping to take down the baddies with their fake karate sounds struck me as a quintessential Bollywood moment - so ridiculous it went way beyond ridiculous to some other enjoyable place but then came right back again
  • Govinda's repeated stick-twirling
  • The motionless crowd watching the opening scenes of "Masti Masti," I presume filmed somewhere in California? Either these are Californians jaded by seeing film shoots wherever they go, or their minds have been blown by Govinda in pleather and Rani in Spice Girl boots.
  • My ability to catch film titles is improving, as I got a lot more of them in the dialogue here than I did last time I watched MPKDH.
  • Sunil Shetty leading a slow clap! What could be better than that!

3 comments:

Totally Basmatic said...

I'm surprised you didn't mention Zohra Seghal showing up on a motorchycle with guns. I don't know if that's better than Sunil Shetty leading a slow clap, though.

Obi Wan said...

I am really amazed at your knack of finding such 'gems'. If you want to watch the real Govinda, pls get your hands on any or all of the following: Hero No.1, Coolie No.1, Haseena Maan Jayegi, Jodi No.1...

Raja Pakistani said...

Aishwarya to act with Will Smith:

http://www.hindustantimes.com/news/5967_1676897,001600060015.htm