January 5th, 2009

The world and I


This weekend I saw Oye Lucky! Lucky Oye! At home, on DVD.
I wish I had watched it in the theatre like Chankaya. The movie is the only Guy Ritchie equivalent for Indian cinema. (And thats some accolade.)
The movie drips Delhi. Nothing but Delhi. And whether you like the city or not - you will remember it by this movie in all its charm. Its grisly feel, its underhand manners, the politics, the warmth, the laconic attitude and the accent. Right from the Mercedes to the Maruti 800's from the wall-to-wall buildings of Old Delhi to the stand alone rock-walled structures of South Delhi Elites, from stage shows for truckers to Discos and...the brilliant, brilliant, brilliant dialogues.
Who cares where the money is coming from as long as its coming in, right? OLLO signifies just that. The Man-with-the-silver-tongue walks away with anything, repeat anything just to live the dream he has seen others live.
His milestones are set higher and higher, just like anyone else with huge ambition - and he can only steal them. He has no loving family of his own and so his house has stolen photographs. The only real thing is what he says, and his girlfriend. At some level, the story is sad. But the fast pace, the excellent dialogues and their delivery, and the charm of the movie sweep you away. The director Dibakar Banerjee does not waste a single moment narrating what a picture can do and tells whole sequences in photographs, borrowing well from Run Lola Run and of course, the famous Guy R flicks Snatch and LS & 2 B

The name of the chrackter (character) could not have been more Delhi, and instances like:
Old sick woman in other room- 'Kaun?'
Lucky the thief - 'Main Lucky Chaiji'
Chaiji - Oh, Lucky! kaise ho beta?
Lucky - bas badiya chaiji, aap kaise hain? dawai kha li na?
Chaiji- haan beta, bas chal raha hai
*lucky walks off with TV and a car*
Chaiji - Lucky? kaun lucky?

The panache, the readiness with which Lucky responds and the way in which other characters reply - it makes the movie one of its kind in Bollywood. I'm delighted it was made. The movie has a heartbeat, it has Pace and it has character...and, Style. No one is an actor in it. The movie rolls them all into itself.

If you have ever stepped in Delhi and met even an Auto Driver, I recommend OLLO to you.
Im watching it again. OLLO was a healthy dose of nostalgia combined with a charming, heart touching no-story.

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