Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Dil Chatha Hai a Bollywood classic

I just finished my fourth viewing of this movie and each time I think I understand it a little bit better. It follows a classic Bollywood formula--young immature men have a lot of fun, go through a crisis and then mature.

It marks the directoral debut of Farhan Akhtar who also did some of the writing. He was part of winning team that included Aamir Khan, Saif Ali Khan, Ashkaye Khan, Preity Zinta, and Dimple Kapadia.

The first music/dance number struck me as one of the most aggressive macho scenes I have watched. All three male leads put a lot of energy into it. The music team of Shankar-Ehsaan_Loy are at the top of their game.  Going back to my youth I remember going to dances and watching others (a little bit myself) wanting to show how cool I was dancing.  In reality at the early stages I felt very awkward, then later more confident.

Although this is a serious romance movie which means somebody dies and there are broken hearts there is also a fascinating use of fantasy becoming reality. At one point Saif and his new girl friend are watching a movie and a first glance it seems like an old black and white classic, but when your eyes are better focussed you realize you are looking at the couple transposed to the screen. In the end of course this symbolizes their mutual recognition of their love. In the second half, really at a climactic moment another fantasy is brought to fruition. Without giving it away it involves an opera where Aamir's character is later asked who he visualized and he avoids answering. He is actually in shock, but at the end acknowledges his real love.

A central relationship that drives the movie is Akshaye Khanna and his older love interest played by Dimple Kapadia. Aamir doesn't take this relationship seriously and ends up breaking his long term relationship with Akshaye just as each leaves home. Preity Zinta and Aamir after initial difficulties become closer ironically in Australia, but there is a something unknown keeping them apart (in addition to Aamir's reluctance to get too involved).

The acting is very well done. There are many details that go into a successful movie and another one might be the cinematography which includes scenes in Goa and Australia.  Farhan Akhtar gets off to a very good start.

At the ending is a little touch that I totally missed on my first viewing. Watch for the re-appearence of a minor character.

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