Friday, April 06, 2007

Delhi Heights

This is a movie where, in corporate parlance, the product fails to meet expectations or deliver on the concept. The idea was nice – show a modern society, the type which are increasingly dotting the landscape of NCR, show the lives of a few of its inhabitants and how they interconnect (that actually still does happen in Delhi / Gurgaon / Noida, unlike in Mumbai where you can live for 10 years without really knowing your neighbours).

However, the execution was flat, marred by a weak script and very ordinary acting. The jokes didn’t really make you laugh that loud, in some cases not even chuckle. There were too many stereotypes (the jovial sikh, the flirty advertising guy etc), too many predictable events (a Punjabi wedding, senti speeches) and nothing much really happens in the movie – the whole movie was basically one storm in a teacup after another. They touch on some very valid issues which most working couples will appreciate but then fail to tackle them / depict them realistically and end up resorting to ‘filmi’ dialogue, the “mujhe maaf kardo (sob sob…)” or even the “bas, mujhe ek mauka aur do” type, which is followed yet again by the (sob, sob !). Also, there are some movies where the supporting cast look natural, fit into their characters and it almost seems like you are watching everyone being who they really are (as in Omkara, for example). And there are some, like Delhi Heights, where every supporting cast member looks like he’s posing for the camera, is playing a prescribed part….

Jimmy Sheirgill – check out the extra ‘i’ in the name, I’m all ‘i’s for him now (sorry – couldn’t resist…) – plays the same old sensitive, good boy role (in Punjabi we say ‘biba munda’) that he’s played in all his successful movies so far (Munnabhai, Hum Tum etc). Its boring now, he needs to do something different, add a new dimension. Neha Dhupia was good – not excellent but good, maybe even very good – seriously, there is an actress in her behind that cleavage. Om Puri tried to do the best he could – there could possibly be two or three other honourable mentions but nothing really that stood out. Rabbi’s music was also a disappointment overall – one very nice song (tere bin, o soniya) but the others were quite forced and also, its true not just for this movie, but have Bollywood directors given up in general on trying to make the playback singers voice match the actors voice who are depicted doing the actual singing ?

It could have been so much better. In its current shape though, it was like drinking champagne without bubbles or a very flat beer. And trust me, neither is a very attractive proposition…

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