Sunday, December 04, 2011

The Dirty Picture

It is commonly believed that heroine (read women) oriented films are never a guarantee for success, especially in Bollywood.  But here is one movie that is out there to prove us all wrong.  'Dirty Picture' is a look back at the 1980's when plus-sized heroines as well as dance-girls posed as sex-sirens on the screen ensured a movies success.  The southern Starlet Silk Smitha was an undisputed queen of this crowd and this movie was a good  attempt at focusing on her life and times . 

Pic Courtesy : Chitramala.in

Dirty Picture is a semi-biography of sorts about this actress who used her oomph and sexuality to good measure, leaving men panting, and marking her presence in tamil movies as an instant guarantee for cash registers ringing. Vidya Balan, who is otherwise known for her non-conformist and clean image, plays the role of Reshma or just 'Silk' to good effect in this thought provoking film.  At these times, when her peers are running after size-zero, Vidya Balan is gutsy enough to add 12 Kilos to and flaunt it too.

The Story

The story follows Reshma (Vidya Balan), a run-away bride, landing herself in a Movie set asking for a role . She is turned off from the sets for being ugly and un-glamorous.  She is resolute to make it big  and continues her struggle until she gets a role as a female dancer complete with pouting lips and revealing attire.  The raunchy song becomes an instant success, and thus was born 'Silk'. Through out her life, many men fill in her days only to cause distress and those include her childhood idol Suryakant (Nasiruddin Shah), RamaKant (Tussar Kapoor) who is the brother of Suryakant.  Ramakant genuinely loves Silk and wants to marry her, but his parents are embarrassed by her wild ways.  Abraham(Emraan Hashmi), is another person who enters Silk's later life and it is Abraham who stays till her end helping her mother to cremate her dead body in the finale.  

The story basically is about Reshma(Silk), from being a make-up girl to her rise to stardom, and ultimately to her tragic death by swallowing sleeping pills.  It is the story of a woman, who had a care-free attitude, and lived her life without thinking twice (sample this dialogue where Silk says : "ज़िन्दगी  एक  बार  मिलती  हे, तो  दो  बार  क्यूँ  सोचना ?).  Dirty Picture is also about the portrayal of women as objects of 'Entertainment' and how  women start accepting this as a way of life.  Silk ultimately had to succumb to the society's bad-mouthing and exploitative nature.  

Dirty Picture is basically a tight rope-walk between the sensual silk and her life as an exploited woman.  The movie Shows her short-lived rise to fame as also the contradiction of her as the object of male fantasy and her quest for love, only to find infidelity and unfaithfulness from the men she love. This catalysis  her fall from 'grace' and leads her towards loneliness and ultimately to suicide.  The film reeks of the apparent hypocrisy that exist in the society as a whole.  She is crestfallen by this duplicity of being revered by the people whom she feeds with her sexuality, but the very same people, wearing a mask of bogusness, is ever ready to put a question mark on her character.    

My Take

All in all, the movie is pure entertainment, intertwined with humour (not at all crass) and mimicry of the old times.  Vidya Balan literally lives the character and does full justice to the role of Silk and carries the film from start to finish.  Having given the job of playing a sex-siren, Vidya Balan carries it wonderfully, and never makes her character look vulgar on screen.  Instead she oozes sensuality. Nasiruddhin Shah is wonderful as the ageing superstar and having given the brief to mimic a certain style of acting which was prevelant at that time, he does it with aplomb.  Emraan Hashmi and Tussar Kapoor play their part well and this is just another instance where Emraan shows us that he can act and very well indeed.  Anju Mahendroo's cameo as the Fashion Journalist is worth mentioning.  Just like the 'lady-in-the-lead', Dialogues are hard-hitting and is another attraction.  The music is over-hyped and is an average fare. The good thing about the movie is that it is never judgmental anywhere about the life of Silk.   

The movie is surely worth a watch, just for Vidya Balan's performance and will be a trend-setter of sorts, hoping that, this will inspire more movie-makers to try and experiment with women-oriented subjects.    That would indeed be a real turn-around for Bollywood.

...Prasanth Menon

Tags & Links : Vidya Balan, Nasiruddhin Shah, Emraan Hashmi, Dirty Picture at ImdbMilan Luthria

18 comments:

Shruti Sharma said...

haven't seen a better movie recently............Indian cinema and audiences have really matured.........just one observation, I may be wrong though.....failed to understand y menfolk are so critical about the movie so much, where on the other hand all the women are wholeheartedly appreciating the movie........wht is the reason could u please answer me.

Shaan Menon said...

I think the reason is pretty simple.. Men love to see their women in a particular way.. they keep the vamp on one side of the road..and the girl next door on the other side.. ! Vidya Balan.. crossed the road.. thats why a whole lot of men felt disappointed... with her bare all act..

...so on the lighter side.. you mean to say..? am i the minority of men.. who actually liked the movie...???

Shruti Sharma said...

Prashaanth Menon thx it is indeed a well framed reply and satisfying enough.and i must say u r an honest person rather an honest man to admit that the movie is gud and to give all the credit to vidhya rather than playing safe and passing petty comments about the movie like the majority of men do

Shaan Menon said...

Shruti Sharma Thanks..!

Purba Ray said...

I personally felt Vidya Balan's otherwise flawless performance was marred by her sophisticated diction. Wasn't Silk supposed to be a semi-literate, village girl?

And the second half of the movie was in dire need of editing.

Overall a bold movie and Vidya is on her way to become Bollywood's next superstar!

Shaan Menon said...

@ Purba mmm...probably.. nice observation though...! I think Vidya is already a superstar.. just sample her performance in Ishqiya... and her role as Jessica Lal's sister.. have taken her places... !

Sindhu Nair said...

very informative.....will see the movie.

Shaan Menon said...

Sindhu Nair Thanks...and after seeing the movie.. dont miss letting me know how it is....!

Anamika Nagpal said...

nice review!

Shaan Menon said...

@Anamika Thanks...!

Praseeth said...

nice review...only thing which surprised me is that you actually said that Emraan Hashmi can act!

Shaan Menon said...

@Praseeth Moothedath He can...! He looks natural... watch 'Jannat' or 'Once upon a Time in Mumbai'....

Praseeth Moothedath By the way, did you see the movie...? and what you say now..about Emraan Hashmi's performance..?

Praseeth said...

Prashaanth Menon Cant believe you are saying this... u call this acting !!! u were the one who once told that Mammootty and Mohanlal are not good actors, and they copy manerisms from Al Pacino...And now, u say that Emran Hashmi can act...GOD... its high time u visited a doctor...

Praseeth said...

Prashaanth Menon no i havent seen the movie

Bobby Abraham Mathew said...

great review - will see.

Shaan Menon said...

@Bobby Thanks Bobby.... for the feedback..! it really matters.. and yeah, you should not miss the movie...!

Shaan Menon said...

@Shruti Sharma, Also the reason why women loved the movie, is perhaps, because, women felt sympathetic to 'Silk' who was lusted by men, but castigated her the next moment. There was a question mark on her character. This apparent duplicity of the men-dominated society resonated on women...!

K Singh said...

The Dirty Picture was a super duper hit film and the role of Vidya Balan on the film is very hot and spicy, as she is playing the role of Silk SMita

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