September 19, 2006



Generally, I don't argue with people who ask what's so good about Satya. I have come to accept that one either likes Ram Gopal Verma style or hates it. One cannot be convinced to like that kind of movies, with possible exception of Rangeela. But, I am sure, there will be no two opinions about his latest movie Shiva. It is downright bad and that view is unanimous. Bad news travels faster than light and, somehow, I was one of very few who happened to miss the news. The movie hall of 300 had just 20-odd people, who also had missed that news. So, what's wrong with the new Shiva? Well, a quick answer - pretty much everything.

This is a story of an honest cop (Mohit Ahlawat) who has taken the job of cleaning up the "system" which consists of gangsters, politicians, gangster-turned-politician and police. In the first 15-20 minutes, I could sense Ardha Satya set in 2006. Alas.. a girl (Nisha Kothari) enters in the life of this newbie cop and his quest for "doing the job" loses fizz. He is spending more time impressing her with bravado (totally hero-ishtyle) of "vardi", bashing the goondas, etc.

When RGV's movie starts with disclaimer "All characters are fictional...", you are treated with a meticulously crafted real-life character(s) in the movie (Think Company, Sarkar). Sure, there is one here. But, RGV spends so much time in details of that character that he loses the big picture - the story. The spineless story, if I we accept there exits one, is full of cliches. Dialogues are not as catchy as they were in earlier gangsta flicks. In the name of action, you see our hero beating 20 goons with one hand (The girl is clung to the other hand. All the time.) and a nail (or was it a chisel?) drilled in the head. Music score by "Maestro" Ilayaraaja tends to be loud as if it is trying to make up lack of some emotions in the movie. The songs are as pleasant as large potholes on a tattered road. On acting front, only Ahlawat, Upendra Limaye(the cop from Page 3) as Bappu and Dilip Prabhavalkar, in a tiny role, are impressive. Nisha Kothari may well be on her way out of Bollywood.

This movie is the glaring evidence that RGV is running out of ideas. Sarkar was inspired by Godfather. And his forthcoming movies Nishabd, Sarkar 2 and Sholay are clearly rip-offs of existing work. What's wrong with you, RGV?

RGV once said in an interview that he has posters of his flop movies plastered in the office (Daud, anyone?). Shiva deserves the largest space on that wall.

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