Friday, September 30, 2011

#209: Chargesheet

I have been told from reliable sources that there is a reason why Dev Anand is making one crap movie after another. It is because he loves his movies and his last wish is to die on a movie set. He doesn't have any other passion, vice or muse in life except to continue writing, directing and producing movies. So while watching this egregiously bad movie, I played that conversation over and over again in my head to understand the lengths to which people go for the love of movies.

I have been brought up on the Saturday afternoon and Sunday shows on DD1 and DD2 at a time when movies like Guide, Jewel Thief, Hum Dono, Kashmir Ki Kali, Professor, Prince, Jhuk Gaya Aasmaan, Suraj were staple diet on weekends. And if you too went through that indoctrination, someone like a Dev Anand would rank very high in your estimation. So it is indeed disheartening to see him being reduced to a pale shadow of himself on-screen and struggling to make his presence felt. And it is upsetting at some level to see a hero being so idiotic in his approach, that what he is doing now threatens to obliterate all those good memories of childhood- Johnny Mera Naam and countless other what-nots.

The stylish flick of the head of the past is no more than a weak imitation of the statement it used to be. What's worse is that Dev Anand's script is so ridiculous, it can make a nursery rhyme seem like a masterpiece and the filming so awful, I wouldn't mind putting money on a theory that either the DOP or Dev Anand himself must've been blind while filming some of the scenes. And some of those new actors that he has taken give you that horrible stinking feeling. Its inexplicable how stupid they are. But what's remarkable is that he still has actors like Naseeruddin Shah, Jackie Shroff and Yashpal Sharma playing key roles in the movie (although what Milind Gunaji was doing in the movie is anybody's guess). Naseeruddin Shah has in fact gone on record saying that the only reason why he did this movie is because he wants to give something back to the man who gave him so many moments of joy when Naseer was growing up.

There's a time in every bad movie that it becomes hilarious. Chargesheet is so bad, it doesn't even reach that level. But then there is one scene that is fatally funny which is that of Home Minister Narayan played by Amar Singh (yes the SP politician) listening to two simultaneous conversations over phone- his one ear listening to what Dev Anand is saying and his other ear focussed on what a cop is saying. The piece de resistance here is the Bharatnatyam that Amar Singh's eyes do depending on what is said being said over the phone. If that scene doesn't crack you up, nothing on planet Earth ever will. This one scene has serious potential to be ranked alongside a dying Ashok Kumar's patriotic march by his bedside in Clerk.

Overall, I know I am not telling you anything that you wouldn't already have guessed about Chargesheet but the only thing I can add is that you ought to run far far away from which ever screen Chargesheet is playing in.
Even if they put you in jail for doing so !

Rating: .5/10

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