Wednesday, January 21, 2015

I like OMG better.

So finally I managed to catch the only remaining evening show of PK yesterday, at the local soon-to-shut-due-to-unpaid-rent mall, before it gets pulled down (the movie, not the mall) It was a spontaneous decision, and I missed the beginning. Anushka and Sushant were already prancing around Brussels.

The movie, as I already knew, was about questioning religion and rituals from a naive alien's perspective. But I had refrained from reading any details or reviews. 

I am guessing everyone has watched PK by now. And watched OMG too.

If you haven't, be warned there maybe spoilers ahead. 

"Clothes make the man. 
Naked men have little or no influence on society"
- M. Twain (Image Source: Google, the true GOD)
As opposed to Paresh Rawal's openly atheist and bellicose Kanjibhai, Aamir's PK was cute and questioning. Which is great... Especially the early part where he tries to figure out how this 'Gola' works. The dancing cars, the moment when he gets beaten up for adjusting the vendor's pajama, the God stickers on his cheeks, Sanjay Dutt's tharki analysis when PK starts talking Bhojpuri. All that had me chuckling. 

Then came the not-so-interesting bits. The questions became repetitive and so did Aamir's expressions (but 
hasn't that been the case since Lagaan when he started doing the class-monitor inspired roles? Fanaa, perhaps, 
being a notable exception). It became simplistic and predictable and lost the zing in the plot and characters. And did they really need to add a romantic angle for Aamir? 

OMG, on the other hand, had  formidable and complex character detailing. Mithun-da was menacing, to say the least.

"Aastha aur Shraddha ka nasha afeem ki tarah hai!"
The dialogue writer gets the credit, of course. But when Leeladhar Swami says it... brrrrrrr! It is a bone-chilling, 'goose-bumping' moment.

Saurabh Shukla was almost cuddlesome, in comparison. 

All that glitters is not god
( Image Source- Google, the true GOD) 
Neither movie is openly atheist. Both are agnostic at best. PK also talks of 2 Gods- one that created us, the other that we created. OMG has the Akshay Kumar 'incarnation' (or shall we call it intervention, for my lack of finding the appropriate word?). Both bring down the Godmen, the 'fear' of God and the rituals. Some of the dialogues are nearly identical too. (Especially about asking a father-like God for favours). 

But OMG, also handled the "What if?" questions. What if you really ran into God who asked you to stop believing in IT? Is it not ironical that an atheist Kanji meets God who asks him to NOT believe in him or get attached to worship? How can you 'unsee' what you have already seen? 

PK has all of Hirani's signatures-

  • Roguish, rebellious yet responsible youth,
  • Slightly strict yet eventually tender parents, 
  • People's movement and modern-day media (the doctors', nurses' and students' support to Munna for his exam preparations/ 'Radio Gandhigiri' in Lage raho, Munnabhai, the engineering students turning to obstetricians and the VIRUS generator(!), 'Wrong numbers'  in PK).
  • Heart-wrenching moment ( Zaheer's death/ the non-existence of Bapu/ Joy's death/ Bhaaya blown to smithereens at the railway station)
  • Softly hummable songs.

But OMG it is, for me this time. 

Maybe Hirani needs to get slightly more experimental going ahead? A dark comedy, perhaps? He is the people's story-teller. He has it in him to tackle dark comedies in India, without raising hackles.


 P.S. Had to include this pic that *my very own God*, GOOGLE presented me with. (This true God knows every living, breathing detail of my life, always gives me more than I ask for, and hasn't *ever* let me down!)


Itna sannataa kyun hai, Bhai?