Wednesday, October 14, 2009

10 points on why one should repent on missing a gem of a film called Chintuji

1. I know so many of my friends and colleagues who keep repenting on the fact that they miss serials and features that Doordarshan used to air in late 80s. Their mood, their visuals, their characters - all of them were so near to life, so much so that we could touch them and associate with them untill the disastrous dragon in the name of "satellite television" came and engulfed our imagination and changed how we watch serials and soaps. Well, for all those people who miss the good ol doordarshan-like features, Chintuji is a must watch.

2. It is a delightful satire, although at times too good to believe, but i would rather go with "too good to believe" than with "too asinine to believe" - especially the way mainstream films, television and images are today.

3. Chintuji is about a writer-director in command, he spins an amazing fabric keeping in mind the way our celebrity-obsessed society and media behave. A small sub-plot also tries to tell about a recent terror attack which the Indian constitution or rather the right wing has completely misconstrued. Although the film could have done without it, but "chalo koi nai...". On second thoughts having read about the Afzal case, a little more indication on how the case has gone wrong would have been wonderful. But then this was already a sub-plot.

4. There is a beautiful moment that the director weaves in with the story - that of Raj Kapoor and his "Mera Naam Joker" days. Some of you may not relate with it, but i was brought up on a steady diet of Raj kapoor films & Shankar-Jaikishan songs and when that sequence in "Chintuji" came, i was overwhelmed. Truly it was a wonderful moment for a hindi film lover.

5. A filmmaker said: "film is all about little little details", which Chintuji is full of. Right in front of the director's onslaught is the film industry itself. He mocks and spoofs its own people, right from Junior Artists Association to tantrum-throwing actors. from the "age-old writer" to mentioning "bhatt saab" again and again. The results are hilarious.

6. An interesting thought of making a tribal song and in place of a particular language, there are words mentioning names of famous directors who gave us the "visual" language. From Copolla, De Sica, Kurosawa to De Palma, Bertolucci, Woody Allen and ending it with Satyajit Ray. Brilliant! No one did it till now and it was always on cards. It reminded me of Aamir Khan's "daulat ki Jung" where he mentions hindi film names to the tribal leader, much to his chagrin, but this song in Chintuji was much better.

7. Satyakam. Hrishikesh Mukherjee and Dharmendra - For more on this, watch the film.

8. Rishi Kapoor

9. Rishi Kapoor

10. Rishi Kapoor.

I am yet to watch Ranbir in Wake up Sid, But taking nothing away from the talented kid, i hope he watches this gem of a film of his father. What a year for Rishiji to reinvent himself. After playing Producer Rommi Rolly in one of this year's best film Luck by Chance, this is a wonderful performance. I hope the film and the performance get its due recognition.

For people passionate about cinema, Chintuji is a must watch. I am nowhere related to the film or its DVD manufacturer but the idea that someone who loves cinema has made a small good-intended piece of it, is thrilling.

© Copyrights 2009 All Rights Reserved. Hardik Mehta

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