Sunday, January 11, 2009

The President is coming

A few days back, my favorite student form the Film Institute, Satchit Puranik, wrote to me saying I must watch

The President is Coming.

Since I knew that Satchit is into theater a lot, I presumed that he was talking about a play.
I saw him online and popped a question in the chat box.

When are you guys coming to Bangalore?

I don't know. No such plans right now.

Oh, I won't be able to see the President then.

Why? You cant go see a film on your own?

It's a film? I thought its a play.

It's a film, darling. Read the mail again.

Oh, Ok, ... It was a play, now its a film?

Yup. Do see it.

Sure I will. First day, first show.

Before I went for the show yesterday evening, I saw this video on popcorn and was quite exited at the thought of seeing a different kind of film. The video shows how stars torment directors and I was feeling sorry for Kunal, the director of the President.

And just before leaving the house, like an idiot I promised a review, and when I was coming home I was thinking, I will just delete the post, but I got a comment from Smita which said, 'Waiting' and now, well...

Actually, Satchit is more than just my favorite student. He has read my novel, and suggested that an Indo-European film can be made from it. Satchit is my hope that 'A Grasshopper's Pilgrimage', will one day hit the screen.

So you see, I cannot write a bad review in a film that he has acted. And he has done a good job. He is a 'social worker from Nagpur', my home town, he breaks out in Marathi (my mother tongue) time and again, he hits an asshole with his chappal, (so goes barefoot for a minute); Yes, I could almost identify with his character.

I even liked Konkana's role. She is a novelist. Who can beat a man and break his nose too. Which felt weird, but then, its a weird movie. It's funny alright, but even the laughter meditation we do in Yoga classes is not more than a full five minutes. A good comedy is always interspersed with enough action, songs, relief, breaks, and the really good ones even explain their jokes.

I mean, the only build up here is 'who will get to shake the President's hand?' I think I have been out of Ftii too long and my sensibilities are ruined by Hindi films. Or, like a good friend recently mentioned, I have become a 'spiritual junkie' and need to be inspired all the time.

What I am trying to say is that the film was good, so what if I don't have a taste for satire? Do see it if you like to see stupid people doing doing stupid things. But don't take your kids along, the jokes are too non-vegetarian for their subconscious minds.

Here is a video of the director and Satchit, arguing about film sensibilities. Followed by a funnier
bit about how an actor does not want the film to release because his parents think he works in a bank.

Now I wonder if these 'funnier than the film' promos have been scripted or they are genuinely impromptu.


Banno said...

Jabeen has edited the film, so wanted to see it. Am going to watch those funny promos tomorrow. And maybe the film day after.

Grasshopper said...

Let me know how you liked it. Jabeen has tried hard, but the theater hangover is very obvious.

Smita said...

Hmmm I so much wanted to see this one...and am sure I will :)

And amen to ur wish that a movie based on ur book is made :)

BTW I have booked the book :) it is releasing on 25th Jan na?

And thanks for writing this one even when u were in no mood to write on it.

Grasshopper said...

My book is released in Delhi, it will be out in the shops in other Indian cities by 20th or 21st of Jan. If you want a discount, order it online and get it by 25th.

Smita said...

Oh is it?

I have ordered at the book store in my office...