An Jo’s Talaash review


The first shot of TALAASH after the credits roll is like a portent to the world of dark intrigue that co-writers Reema Kagti (RK) and Zoya Akhtar (ZA) wish to suck us into; a world where the probable and improbable talk to us permeated through the moody atmospherics of a neon-lit Bombay. On one seemingly innocuous night, a howling street dog, and two junkies lost in their own world stare at the full moon vigorously attracting sea-waves while a car driving down over an acceptable speed limit swerves and crashes into the sea. From this nocturnal scene to the last scene which is set in broad daylight ashore a lake, the film and hence the lead’s life comes a full circle, with Aamir Khan’s (AK) cop-character of Surjan Singh finally coming to terms with the possible improbabilities of life within and outside his world.

When considered within the mainly non-experimental forts that the Hindi film industry’s major star-actors enjoy being ensconced in, that AK invests both artistically and economically in this dark world of a couple fighting their inner demons is quite a welcome irony. Surjan Singh is a police officer who is investigating the ‘accident’ of a film-star in the afore-mentioned car accident. Apart from his professional necessity of investigating the case, he also has to deal with the accidental drowning of his son in a lake for which he considers himself responsible to the fullest extent. While he turns an insomniac and immerses himself in investigating the film-star’s death as a coping mechanism, his wife Roshni (Rani Mukherjee (RM)) develops her own way of dealing with their son’s death by believing a neighbor Mrs. Frenny (Shernaz Patel, wonderfully quirky) who promises Roshni ‘weird’ ways of coming to terms with the death of her son. The film, then, is a manifestation of how two seemingly distinct narratives of the personal life of Surjan and his professional findings converge and finally lead to a catharsis for Surjan specifically.

It is this journey then that is the main take-away here and not necessarily the destination or even the ideas/sights that one meets at the destination. In fact, the revelation at the denouement might come across—relatively— a dampener when compared to the other movies (read Hollywood) that have tackled such a theme many times before. RK succeeds in leaving quite an impact when it comes to characterizations and the Bombay night-life atmospherics. The latter, mainly, gel quite seamlessly into the inner turmoil of the lead couple. Throughout, RK and ZA prep up the narrative with wonderfully etched characters that depict as much as they hide. As Devrath Kulkarni, Suraj’s subordinate, Raj Kumar Yadav is quite effective and so is the actress playing the escort Nirmala. But the one non-lead actor that stands as a wonderful humanization of Bombay’s slimy night life is Nawazuddin Siddiqui’s (NS) Tehmur. He terrifically portrays the dichotomy of being selfless when being selfish; while he doesn’t let his conscience speak when he lets the pimps drag his ‘anointed’ sister away, he does let the love of his life Nirmala walk away with moolah even at the cost of life. His introductory scene with Surjan is a hoot when he mentions he is a hunger-driven beggar by profession albeit carrying a mobile phone! His physical ailment of being a cripple never-ever overtakes his wide-eyed portrayal of a man desperate to get out of his forced environs and this fact speaks volumes for his talent. The thrust of the film, however, is laid on Kareena Kapoor’s (KK) character of Rosie, an escort who takes an interest in the film-star’s murder/accident case and keeps aiding Surjan with clues. As a golden-hearted escort, she is portrayed as someone quite oddly fitting in her environs. Her attire, make-up, and dialogue delivery are quite at odds with her forced profession and rightly so contextually. She comes across quite brightly-lit when compared to her co-workers’ dark environs. Aided by such ‘accoutrements,’ KK’s Rosie does an apt justice to the director/writer’s ‘vision’ of her. She shines especially in her nightly conversations with AK on the sea-shore to which he somehow keeps getting drawn to.

The camera is almost a character in the movie. RK’s Bombay is seedy, not dirty. And cinematographer Mohanan adeptly lenses the movie, making the neon-lit streets and the gently crashing waves talk as much as the characters. RK’s another accomplishment is the placement of songs. They are smartly fit in the right places. The picturisation of ‘Naa Tu Jaane’ and ‘Laakh Duniya Kahe’ are truly wondrous-fits in the narrative contextually. Encapsulating an escape sequence in a song is definitely an unexpected and wonderful achievement.

This is a relentless film when it comes to sticking to the theme. There are absolutely no light moments in the movie. It is a claustrophobic atmosphere replete with dark alleys of the human mind. Even the seemingly bright scenes—couple’s ‘happy’ memories with their kid—ultimately serve as a harsh precursor to the current depressive states of mind. Coming to the performances, AK’s Surjan strikingly comes across as a single-note depiction, but rightly so. He has an implosive guilt-ridden angst in him and that is all that he is supposed to be in the entire proceedings until his cathartic healing at the end. It is a nicely-etched, restrained performance from him. Even in scenes where he could be forgiven for breaking loose (scenes with the escort madam; with Shernaz Patel), there is an effective display of pulling back. RK as a deglamorized house-wife is quite effectively low-key in her portrayal of a grieving mother and house-wife.

That RK displays quite a rise—and innovation— in her craft-quotient in this sophomoric venture is evident in TALAASH. The scene where an insomniac AK keeps thinking of ‘what-could-have- been’ before his son dies or the way she shows the back-story with AK crying away and driving are wonderfully shot. She avoids many clichés that come with this genre. There is not a single moment where a ‘revelation’ is thrust at the audience aided by hammering back-ground or gimmicky photography. Dialogues, however, could have been more potent if it were the other way round – with Anurag Kashyap being the main dialogue-writer and Farhan Akhtar the ‘additional’ dialogue writer. In terms of editing, while the first-half is taut, the second half, for a very few minutes, does seem a little stretched.

If anything, this movie does again add testimony to the fact that Aamir Khan has a cinematic-knack for engrossing story-telling and scripts. It is difficult to imagine any other actor in mainstream Hindi film industry that takes on a dark noir as a sort of ‘come-back’ after a big-screen hiatus. (In fact, this movie is almost the equivalent of those Hollywood movies of this genre that have longer DVD-shelf life than box-office.) That he not only acted but also produced only underscores this fact. Whether or not the movie rakes in the moolah is arguably disputable, that it will go on to age quite healthily is almost a certainty. Unless something ‘A-final’ happens, that is.

P.S: Try to stay back till the end-credits roll-over.

About these ads

79 Responses to “An Jo’s Talaash review”

  1. This is a great read. You hit many of the right points. Hope to say something on the film myself so won’t respond in detail here. Loved the film. Saurabh brought this up elsewhere but there are definitely some interesting parallels with DMD here.

    • Thanks for posting this separately Satyam. Waiting eagerly for your take too. I might see new things that I missed..

    • myselfaamir Says:

      Waiting for your views with bated breath! As your acumen would bring out some facet which nobody gave a hoot to, so do not test our patience :)

    • Just read An Jo’s review , Great to read it. Thanks for sharing.

      On 1st day I watch ” Talaash “, I love the film, Awesome , Direction, Story, Screenplay, Music Great.
      Brilliant Performances from Aamir Khan, Kareena Kapoor,Rani Nawazuddin Siddiqu .Thanks to Reema Kagti & Zoya Akhtar and all team of movie Talaash. Truly love all songs of the film, Great lyrics.

      • I agree- Satyam, it’s been ages since you wrote a proper piece, looking forward to this. :-)

      • omg–its so nice to see an actual comment from xhobdo–wow
        Till now amy and me were thinking he/she is one of those autobots who keep putting the same post in chatrooms/forums
        eg “thank you satyam” comment
        agree with everyhting xhobdo :-)
        ps–anything in talaash u did NOT like…err

        • I did NOT think that Xhobdo was an autobot!! He seems like an extremely sweet person, only Alex would have such suspicions about him! :-P

          • @ xhobdo–i told u earlier–Amy really likes u —y u dont ‘respond’ to her–should i help out..
            Anyhow, in one of my upcoming spoofs,i may cast xhobdo in a cameo/cute role of a ‘toyboy’…hmm i will see

            btw satyam—wheres your ‘piece’
            i mean, the one on talaash…

          • will get to it at some point today or tonight.

    • Waiting for ur piece. And as much as I liked the visuals of Talaash I will easily prefer Amit Roy’s work DmD over it. And how can one forget Midival Punditz by score

  2. glad this is a separate thread, excellent comprehensive review.

  3. Wonderful review An Jo :-)

    • Thanks Ami. Read your take through the ‘deconstruction’ angle. I couldn’t fathom it that way but definitely opened my mind….

  4. An Jo – this is THE best review I’ve read for T so far. Thnx a lot. Such an insightful review: “The picturisation of ‘Naa Tu Jaane’ and ‘Laakh Duniya Kahe’ are truly wondrous-fits in the narrative contextually. Encapsulating an escape sequence in a song is definitely an unexpected and wonderful achievement.” I am very glad that you felt the same way as I did. The song and music leaves a very powerful impact esp. while watching on the screen and in the scheme of the things going on in the film. I’ve forgotten the no. of times I’ve heard this song now. Here you go: 4th song: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Wo2I7G82zQ

  5. ” She shines especially in her nightly conversations with AK on the sea-shore to which he somehow keeps getting drawn to.” can’t agree more on this alongwith the other scene in the hotel room betn. the two – again a conversation – probably tendermost scenes of the movie? i loved them equally. Kareena shines while acting with aamir :-) she has a role which she would never forget in her life and she is getting all the praises for it – she deserves it

  6. “P.S: Try to stay back till the end-credits roll-over.”
    I did not, now you gotta tell me what I missed!

    • Nykavi: I don’t know if it would right to tell. But there is a brief scene after the end credits. And I did find it very effective. So for anyone who still hasn’t seen it, stay till the end..

      • ***SPOILER***

        Since everybody wants to know what happens after the end-credits, I am writing it out here…

        Though the road where the car crashes is straight as an arrow with no bumps, the police put up a sign-post..’ACCIDENT SPOT..DRIVE CAREFULLY”

        This, too me, is a stamp that the case goes into the annals of A-FINAL..just like Mulder and Scully’s umpteen X-files…

        ***SPOILER***

    • myselfaamir Says:

      An Jo, You have certainly written what i wanted to, but dearth of talent is something which made me realise the vitality of this rare art. Kudos for being so lucid without giving away any spoiler, a very insightful review.

      One thing i would like to mention is that i’m all for the special praise Nawazuddin is getting, but beyond a point it is getting trite as Aamir himself had played such characters with elan in his early career, ie Raakh, JJWS, Rangeela, Ghulam, 1947 Earth to post 2000 DCH, RDB, which were multi layered characters, so to make it seem like as some messiah like saviour sort of miracle has happened is either foolhardy or myopic or might be both in equal measure!!

      • The reason why I felt so impressed with NS performance is that I felt no ‘extra’ empathy or sympathy for his character because of his physical challenge. And that is where credit is due to him. He conveyed everything that he had to only with his expressions. No ‘stunt’ acting from him. To me, he came across as selfish a character as anyone in that world. Had he been a ‘normal’ person, maybe I wouldn’t have been that impressed with his over-all performance.

        Spoiler:

        Even in the chase sequence, you see how smartly he applies his brain and takes an aerial route to escape!! If it were any other ordinary film-maker or actor, you would have him running around and the henchmen catching him owing to his handicap.

        Spoiler end.

  7. Personally, didn’t find the film very satisfying. There were some moments I liked. The one great part in the film was the Timur chase and his handing over his money to his lady love. Sacrifice in love is always a beautiful emotion and there is genuine pathos in that scene there. But barring that, I just didn’t feel there was enough meat to this story to bite into. I don’t say it’s a bad film, just a bit too plain and underwhelming coming from Aamir. A good story needs a few interesting characters and I didn’t find that in Talaash.

    Aamir’s character just lacks a personality. His body language with arms crossed (there’s never ever a scene where he is running or shown physically exerting himself ) gives you a definite impression of intertia. This could also perhaps be because he’ s constantly getting work done from his subordinates. Unlike in say Sarfarosh, where he also was part of several chases, he doesn’t quite have the dynamism here. Take for example a film like Shaitan, where Rajeev Khandelwal had just a few scenes as a police inspector, but his act is so smouldering and intense, it literally makes the film worthwhile for that one character. A good indictor of how well a character has been etched is when you can imagine the person’s reaction in a certain situation. It was disappointing to see Aamir given such a lack-lustre role.

    As for the plot, what can one say. It is fairly good, but when you include the supernatural in your story, it kind of dilutes things, and then a suspense drama can effectively no longer make claims of being cerebral.

    Would I watch the film again? Probably no. As i said, the characters were just not exciting enough for me.
    2.5 from me.

    PS: btw, very nicely written review above, thought of course i didnt enjoy the film as mich as An Jo.

    PSS: The fillm, if it is lucky, will do above average business, and that’s not because it’s a dark, grim film or whatever. I said it earlier as well that if a film has to do well in this genre, it better be exceptional, and that Talaash is not. I’m all for Aamir doing a realistic, subtle film. But do a 1947 instead. Don’t approve laborious and unexciting subjects just because biwi likes them :-)

    • @ Sandyi you seemed to have watched Talaash with your preoccupied notions, that is why you are asking Aamir’s character to behave like what he did in Sarfarosh is ludicrous to say the least. Why ought Shekhawat had to run, show his virility, chase goons, why?? By your own logic, every policeman should be portrayed identically in each and every movie!! Here his story depicts his frailty as a human being who is unable to confront with the truth and running away from it to avoid the grim reality he is going through. So he is not one dimensional as he was in Sarfarosh, but his internal conflict and dilemma and his duties as a policeman and as a husband is keeping him fighting on myriad fronts simultaneously. And he portrays it with gravity and sincerity, which the role required of him.

    • I watched talaash on friday morning.I had a lots of expection from this movie. Bec it was aamir’s movie coming after long time and he was not only acting but producing also. And lot’s of buzz was there for it’s suspence. But after watching it I felt the movie was just ok. good only. It wasn’t awesome or very good for me. While watching the movie i was getting distracted by few dialoges which was not upto the mark, i was getting distracted due to it’s slow pace. After every scene i was thinking about it more and coming on my own conclusion about what could be the suspence will be. I guessed it correctly earlier also before it coming to disclose. I felt the movie has good acting from all actors specially i get impressed with kareena’s acting. Now one interesting thing i want to share with u i saw this movie again today and i had know everything about the movie, it’s suspence also. I thought before entering the hall that i could not watch it fully. But at the second watch i wasn’t distracted for a single minute, i was so involved in the movie how 2 and half hour gone i couldn’t understand. The story telling was so good that i wasn’t bored for a single minute in my second watch. This thing never happened with me for other movies when i watch it second time. Specially in the second watch i felt aamir and rani so much into their character. Aamir was so natural in his acting. It was a awesome feeling for me after watching it second time. This movie has repeat value even it is a suspence movie. Those who didn’t like the movie much in first view they can try for second view. The experience i got after second view is so good and unique i can’t tell. Many things i get to know well in the second watch. Why aamir said that his character has many layers now i understood it.

  8. @ ann–v nice piece–also u showed to some ‘professional’ reviewers how to convey the ‘essence/vibe’ wihtout giving away spoilers
    though have just scanned this –will read it after watching the film (if i can b4 it goes out of theatres @ my end)

    @ sandyi–brillian short note–this is what new u bring to the table
    The ability to disagree (against popular sentiment) with a genuine reason–not seen the film but can already see your point..
    “Aamir’s character just lacks a personality. His body language with arms crossed (there’s never ever a scene where he is running or shown physically exerting himself ) gives you a definite impression of intertia. This could also perhaps be because he’ s constantly getting work done from his subordinates”–hmm well, will hav to see the film to comment on that…

    “The fillm, if it is lucky, will do above average business, and that’s not because it’s a dark, grim film or whatever. I said it earlier as well that if a film has to do well in this genre, it better be exceptional, and that Talaash is not. I’m all for Aamir doing a realistic, subtle film. But do a 1947 instead.”–try telling this to some here lol

    “Don’t approve laborious and unexciting subjects just because biwi likes them”–ya caught ya there…
    that explains your antipathy to dhobi ghaat/kiran rao, atleast partially..Could sense it from your dhobi ghaat view yesterday though i can be wrong (partially)
    Cmon, what hav u got against poor nerdy quiet noncontroversial Kiran Rao :-)

  9. Fantastic review An and ur 1st para is absolutely killer.

    I remember when Kahani had released some here had been calling it the new Citizen Kane. Some of them must be sore now since Talaash is a much better film (though I liked Kahaani a lot)

    Btw I thought Sudhir Mishra’s Calcutta Mail explored the Kolkata underbelly much before Kahaani. And his Iss Raat Ki Subah Nahi is on of the best in the genre imo

    • LOL! Kahaani recieved MUCH stronger critical reviews across the board- and the WOM for the film was more unanimously positive as well. Talaash will obviously make more money, but Kahaani was easily the better-liked film. Also, even if one is a fan of a film, there is no reason to put down another film in a similar genre or to feel ‘sore’ if a film from that genre does well- especially when both happen to be good films, trying to create a ‘competition’ between both films is not really necessary. In any case, Kahaani was a small-budget, female-centric thriller and Talaash is a dark drama starring Aamir Khan and Kareena Kapoor- it isn’t really fair to compare them.

      • kahaani was more liked across the board because it was more ‘likeable’ and less dark. same goes for other smaller but good successes this year (barfi, omg); these films are more accessible.
        although genres of these two (which is why flaws of one are more digestible than that of the other) are slightly different, saying one liked this better than that is hardly an issue, i don’t see it as a put-down (unless i am missing some vibes here). i myself liked talaash a lot more despite its flaw. i actually remember saurabh defending kahaani’s climax when i epxressed my disaaponitment with it here few months ago.
        a divisive film can be as if not more interesting than a more consensus generating one. and nobody is denying kahaani’s or vidya’s achievement in taking a small film to a big finish. in fact, that was the reason a lot of people i know who didn’t like it as much kept it to low level grumblings (myself included) because you don’t want to take that credit from the under dog.

        • Saying that you liked one film better than the other is pefectly fine, but I don’t see any reason to ‘pit’ these films against each other and to say that fans of Kahaani must be ‘sore’ because Talaash is ‘much better’. I don’t think that anybody is that petty that they would grudge a film for being better than another film that they had previously lavished praise upon.

          Also I’m not saying that Kahaani is a better film (although I personally prefer it) than Talaash simply because it gained greater appreciation- I’m saying that there is no need for fans of Kahaani to be ‘sore’ because the majority opinion is that Kahaani was a much better film anyway.

          Anyway, I’m not saying that Suarabh is denying Vidya’s achievment- that’s Alex’s comment, not mine.

        • “because you don’t want to take that credit from the under dog”
          why do u bring a dog into everything, anya
          hahah joking–i know u love your pet dog…. :-)
          ps–shoo cute–anya with her cute doggy..oh that was offtopic…

          • BTW- I’m not trying to attack Saurabh or anything- I know that he did not make that comment with any agenda to pull down Vidya or to put Aamir on a pedestal. I just thought that his statement that Kahaani fans would be sore was unnecessary, that’s all. Like I said, both films are the rare sincere, creditable efforts in Bollywood, and in genres that Bollywood is usually very inept at- most sensible movie fans would welcome such films, and not get sore that there is more than one good film in a similar genre in the same year.

          • chill amy—weve ensured everyone has now accepted your point.about kahani/talaash …
            btw i saw skyfall yesterday–hav u seen it, amy?
            or SLP…

      • Ami I was never hinting at u in my comment but if u can recall many here were using ridiculous hyperboles while praising Kahaani. And as i said before i liked Kahaani a lot and saw it twice in the theatre

        • I know Saurabh, I didn’t take the comment personally or think that you were trying to pull Vidya down. As for the hyperbole, if I recall correctly there was only one person who compared it to Hitchcock, and that was OG, but even she admits to watching and enjoying Talaash despite her well-known hatred for Aamir. Like I said earlier, I think that most people who comment on this blog are lovers of cinema, and they would never grudge a film for being good, regardless of whatever other biases they might have.

  10. i TOTALLY support Amy in this perverse attempt here
    of some( like usual suspects like rogue rajen!!) to put down Kahani and try to prop up talaash as some manoj shyamlans next level genre film taking bollywood to a new level stuff
    and trying to muffle all oppostion like oldgold !!

    “Kahaani recieved MUCH stronger critical reviews across the board- and the WOM for the film was more unanimously positive as well. Talaash will obviously make more money, but Kahaani was easily the better-liked film. Also, even if one is a fan of a film, there is no reason to put down another film in a similar genre or to feel ‘sore’ if a film from that genre does well”
    well said amy -
    in my opinion–Vidyas achievement in taking that hero-less small film from obscurity into a critical and commerical success bugger than whatever talaash should do (with some of the biggest stars /production availalable)

    • Dude I am sure Ami requires ur help in keeping perverts like me and Rajen Sir in check. And why attack me in such a covert fashion, u should let it go

      “prop up talaash as some manoj shyamlans next level genre film taking bollywood to a new level stuff
      and trying to muffle all oppostion like oldgold !!”- u might have forgotten but when Kahaani had released many here ( not Ami )were actually hailing it like it was a Hitchcock masterpiece. Also some were claiming how Aamir and the Talaash team were apparently scare of Balan and Kahaani. That pissed me off.

      • I agree Saurabh. Vidya kare to rasleela. Aamir kare to character Dheela. Many Vidya lovers are taking it personally.

        • “Many Vidya lovers are taking it personally.” Which Vidya lovers?! There are hardly any Vidya Balan fans on this blog (especially since Di doesn’t comment much here any more) and I haven’t seen a single ‘Vidya lover’ bring up Kahaani over here after Talaash was released!

          Once someone has seen both films it becomes obvious that there isn’t much point in comparing them, and that they can both co-exist peacefully. It’s not the fault of ‘Vidya Lovers’ if the media creates stupid rumours (like they always do, with every Khan film) that Aamir is postponing the film because of Kahaani.

          And if certain Aamir haters use Vidya as an excuse to attack him, that’s hardly the fault of Vidya or her fans!

          • Just finished watching Talaash. In terms of pure acting, ignoring all else, Aamir wears one single expression thru’ out the film almost like a mask. For me VB is only true actor today in BW. Her performance within performance, in Kahaani, the pain, the whole ‘act’ was many layered, nuanced, superb on all counts. I would take VB over ‘actor’ A.K anyday! On that note, I have been watching a whole lot of Parambrata’s bangla movies and I think he should do more hindi movies ;-)

          • “n terms of pure acting, ignoring all else, Aamir wears one single expression thru’ out the film almost like a mask” – this is the statement of the day :-) can u tell pl. which is that one single expression ?????

      • i was talking on the basis of yesterdays rants of rogue rajen elsewhere–cant bother to trace…about talaash/kahaani
        Havent read any of your comments on this till now–so not sure how u got in —-and yeah do remember u infact recommending that kahani is worth watching.
        so it wasnt for u –relax

        ps–who is this “belle” who scared poor oldgold away…
        suspense is in the air :-)

    • It is always a god idea to read carefuly before misrepresenting anybody’s position. Never said anything bad/derogatory about Kahaani.Only said it is a different film and there is no valid comparision with Talash. Which is exactly what sane people like Ami are saying. I guess some lessons to overcome dyslexia are in order and you need to fit those inbetween your sessions with psychiatrist!

      • Good idea

      • Well I suppose Talaash is more like Kahaani than it is like ZNMD! The problem here is that many folks decided that Kahaani would be a cudgel with which they would hit Talaash and so this whole comparison has been overblown. It’s perfectly fine to like Kahaani more (though I personally liked Talaash a whole lot more) but that’s different from engaging constantly in this cynical comparison (for those who are doing so) as if Kahaani is the very first film of its kind in Bombay history and Talaash is the second!

  11. P.S: Try to stay back till the end-credits roll-over.

    Could you please explain that? I left after the movie got over, thinking why did they have to mirror their ending from THAT and THAT movie… Can you please tell me what after the end-credits roll over with a SPOILER warning,,

  12. Missing OG.

  13. 2 many reviews, 2 many opinions, 2 many comments, 2 many.

    This film is not Socrates or Plato.

  14. Except for the first song during the opening credits, all the other songs though good, dragged the movie. Our film makers just cant do without songs even for this type of movie. I prefer to watch a movie of this genre without songs. Some non intrusive background music would have helped.

    • Agreed. And that is why I loved the fact that Kanoon was songless.

    • I disagree as i felt songs blended with the narrative with out slackening the pace of the movie nor intruding unjustly. I, for one, felt songs took the story forward with their apt placing and very subtle and meaningful lyrics adding zing in the movie.

  15. Very engaging read and agree with a lot here.Nice job, An Jo

  16. @ anya–interesting link there
    But then rachel saltz’s role is not to serve as an actual ‘reviewer’ as such for the prospective bollywood viewer but as a tick-box/nod acknowledgement to their presence.
    Obviously if anyone takes any viewing decision based on her reviews on bollywood–well…
    “So why does the Old Gray Lady (as the Times is nicknamed) even publish Bollywood reviews, perhaps other than to somewhat acknowledge that a small part of its readers are brown desi immigrants, mostly educated and some rather well-off? “–agree

    btw –it seems i will need an appointment/checkup with a shrink soon…as some1 suggested….–perhaps u can give me a personalised package… :-)

  17. Was just thinking why the film left me feeling so dissatisfied. Probably because there are too many strands here demanding you to invest emotional attention. Somewhere in the middle of the movie, I wondered if it wouldn’t have been a better idea to simply have an Arth like drama, and the delicious prospect of Aamir in an extra marital affair. I mean, it’s not often you get this kind of dream star cast. But even that strand has no future in this film because the hero has no plausible reason to leave his wife.
    Then the film demands your attention to the sub plot involving Timur and his own little love story. Another strand is about the red light denizens and through Kareena and the other girl, there’s a social angle about the callous treatment of sex workers.
    Then there the two major strands – one, a couple trying to come to grips with the loss of their child, and of course the main case involving the accident itself.
    The problem for me was that none of these strands came together for me in an emotionally wholesome manner. They seemed to me different themes brought together clumsily into one. Which is why I kept thinking each of these strands could be different films. Like the Timur sequence would fit wonderfully in an Anurag Kashyap or RGV film. The Kareena angle could well belong to any average horror flick.
    Also because you as an audience are expected to invest in so many strands, you are diverted and confused about where your sympathies should lie. That’s never a good way to script a film. Also, the link between the two main strands are so forced, that it does not bring the big catharsis with Aamir’s crying scene.
    There were some very effective moments in this film – i loved the sequences with Aamir- Rani and Kareena-Aamir, but i just didnt think much of this story as a whole. As parts, they are very effective, as one film, it almost seems trite.

    • sandy, u have stopped liking aamir for the reasons best known to u and SRK ;-) that is the only reason u didn’t like the film :-)

      • I suspected this when I read her review for JTHJ and unwarranted reference to AK.

        • Where’s sandyi’s piece on JTHJ –would like to read it…
          “Also because you as an audience are expected to invest in so many strands, you are diverted and confused about where your sympathies should lie. That’s never a good way to script a film. Also, the link between the two main strands are so forced, that it does not bring the big catharsis with Aamir’s crying scene”
          This is called an educational passage… Thanx

    • Thankfully, I could also eat popcorn and drink soda at the same time!

  18. satyam, u r summoned to put ur views in next 60 min or else u will be boycotted from this blog :-)

    • AamirsFan Says:

      yeah for real…awaiting his review…GF’s…and qalandar’s…Satyam bhai has really liked the movie (reading from the comments he has made).

  19. “On one seemingly innocuous night, a howling street dog, and two junkies lost in their own world stare at the full moon vigorously attracting sea-waves “-

    Was it just me or did anyone else think that this superbly executed opening scene seemed to come out of a graphic-novel. Kagti effectively portrayed the City Of Dreams as the quintessential Sin City of modern civilization

    • It portrayed the dark things to unfold. An apt beginning.There is subtle humour thrown in from the beginning. Who is pinki who predicted?
      And the mumbaiyya hindi like off hogaya.

  20. TALAASH is a movie that deals with paranormal which goes against my rational grain. I was wondering why I still was completely with the film in the movie hall and was thinking about it, for some time, even outside it. Perhaps it is the exploration into the psyche of its characters and thereby into human psyche at large which intrigued me.
    When we are confronted with a difficult situation, our inability to face reality, as it were, we move into areas that are otherwise, prohibited. The movement into these areas is with an anticipation and search, talaash, of comfort. We can take recourse of paranormal but as we have abdicated our rationality, in the process, we confound the problem. Or we may have indulge in some act that delivers instant gratification but through means that is classified as “immoral” and suffer guilt. We may be obliged at the end despite this there is some hidden force that goads us into the forbidden territory.
    Most of the characters are complex personalities and exhibit “shades of grey”. Black ones have polka white spots and vice versa. Most films have a penchant to put its characters in brackets of black and white. That’s why we have heroes and villains, instead of just actors, in films. In reality we never see such a polarised psyche. Here is pimp who gets his beloved out of that very business through which he makes his living by making ruthless compromises. Or another one who desperately wants to get of the filth of a brothel. This can be possible by a ransom for which he can take someone’s life. Yet he is able to part with his booty, with ease, to his ladylove.
    Circumstances influence our psyche which is constantly interacting with world. And as the world is in a flux so accept a constant psyche is an error. Also when we judge someone we fail take this into consideration. Here was a wife who was confident of her husband’s fidelity and therefore was able to lend certain leverage to her better half‘s loyalty, as she knew he was going through a rough patch.
    Laws of morality and ethics are extremely complex. Even the underworld has its own set of laws and defines right and wrong within its paradigm. So here was a hooker who wanted to salvage her self-respect and get closure, by bringing to book, those who left her in a lurch, as if she was “dirt”. So she uses a police officer to avenge her death so that she can die peacefully
    The movie was technical brilliant on most accounts. Have not seen any movie with such finesse, of late, albeit Dipakar’s Shanghai. Camera captures Mumbai’s underbelly beautifully but its ability to get the feel of brothels and RLD is exceptionally remarkable. The best in the industry were delegated the task and they delivered it well.

  21. Agree–a nice semi-spritual take on talaash Arapanam
    Something(s) distracted me during my viewing besides Aamirs all-pervasive brooding presence
    Aamir engulfed me and vice versa(though his performance/role wasnt uniformly good and had weak points)–
    I dIdnt notice /care for lots of these other connotations, i admit
    Also–
    “Here was a wife who was confident of her husband’s fidelity and therefore was able to lend certain leverage to her better half‘s loyalty, as she knew he was going through a rough patch.”
    Yeah it was noteworthy that Rani was so ‘permissive’ ..

    “Laws of morality and ethics are extremely complex. Even the underworld has its own set of laws and defines right and wrong within its paradigm. So here was a hooker who wanted to salvage her self-respect and get closure, by bringing to book, those who left her in a lurch, as if she was “dirt”. So she uses a police officer to avenge her death so that she can die peacefully”
    ahaa–well written..

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s