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Monday, January 29, 2007

Salaam-e-formula

Salaam-e-ishq boldly goes very almost all of Bollywood has gone before: too many songs, too little logic, melodramatic dialogue and a pretense at originality.

The movie weaves 6 tales, all loosely connected to each other in the manner of Love Actually, where each story centers around the theme of love and each has a problem that needs resolution. Now let's sit back and take wild guesses at what these problems would be: married man has affair - of course yes! woman has accident and gets amnesia - Bingo! Yuppie thinks marriage is a prison - Right on! Intercaste marriage? - er no, but we are close coz there's an inter-race marriage issue now! Well, you get my drift...

Director Nikhil Advani clearly has had enough of the new generation of Hindi movies that have come out recently. So he's gone all out in using the old formula of success: take a star cast (a whopping 11 big names), add naach gaana (6 useless tunes and only 1 good cover number from Shankar Ehsaan Loy), and don't bother with the details despite ample time to go beyond superficiality - the movie is more than 3.5 hours long! And finally, give a happy ending - in this case, 5 happy endings and also a "happy ending" of the massage parlor variety if you get my drift.

The tragedy is that Advani has failed to learn from his muse Love Actually what good editing is all about. Honestly, he could have trashed all those useless songs, removed quite a few of the melodramatic scenes that serve no purpose in the story ('papa, please I beg you, show your hatred towards my wife!', etc) and left the movie a few notches higher and me much happier in the bargain.

On the bright side, the cast has acted well, and is quite good looking too.* John Abraham provides many topless and barely covered torso scenes, but for some unfathomable reason he indulges in a lot of baywatch-style running. Salman is looking better and slimmer and less bald. But I wish he'd lost the accent along with the puffiness. Priyanka is as sexy and stylish as ever as an item-girl.

More importantly, There are certainly quite a few laughable moments. Akshaye Khanna and Govinda create some good scenes. Sohail Khan has a role bordering on gross and manages it with aplomb in the few minutes he gets on screen. Only John Abraham keeps on weeping along with Vidya Balan and drinks a lot of glycerine in the bargain. Yes I said 'drinks' glycerine, coz he keeps on kissing the woman's tears in a manner that the director must have found romantic, but personally I find rather yucky.

Verdict: wait for DVD. Movie is timpeass if you keep the remote control's forward button in hand. Certainly better than chhup chhup ke, golmaal, 36 Chinatown and other monstrosities that I've subjected myself to recently.

*cast: John Abraham/Vidya Balan, Sohail Khan/Isha Koppikar, Anil Kapoor/Juhi Chawla, Govinda/ Shannon, Akshaye Khanna/Ayesha Takia, Salman Khan/Priyanka Chopra


4 comments:

Chakpak - Salaam e Ishq, Eklavya Gallery said...

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Quicksilver! said...

Nice pic!:)))

Tohou Lidia said...

I've only heard one of the songs which is "salaam e ishq" but i actually had it on repeat for quite a while! It looks like one of those movies i'll just see because of the cast and the fact everyone else is seeing it! I'm so glad John Abraham wasn't paired with Priyanka Chopra though... it would have been too much gorgeousness for me! By the way, your picture is really pretty! -Amy