January 14, 2007

 

Guru : So near yet so far

With Guru, Mani Ratnam comes very close to create a path-breaking cinema. But, his lack of will power and strong desire to stay politically correct prevents him from making a great cinema. Guru ends up being just good cinema and a lost opportunity.

The ambitious Guru has flexible ethical standards when it comes achieving his dream. So flexible, that he marries a girl just because with dowry money he can set up business. I wish Mani Ratnam could use so many gray shades to paint the character of Guru. (There is a ton of material in the archives of Indian Express he could have used.) To compensate ethically questionable behaviour, he makes Guru look more human by adding characters like Meenu and Mota Bhai in the movie. The final self-righteous monologue by Guru in front of the judiciary commission has populism written on it all over. Worse, there are negative undertones of allusions to a business group survived the madness of bureaucracy, license raj and socialism without deviating from high ethical standards. Mani Ratnam need not be so apologetic about misdeeds of the man who was ahead of the time.

Things that work for movie? Abhishek Bachchan, breathtaking setup of 60s and 70s, the characters who play small yet noticeable role.

Finally, all my happiness of listening to Rehman's music came to a naught when images were associated with them. Now, when the songs are played my mind thinks about the the picturization instead of the poetry of Gulzar saab.

I keep wondering Ram Gopal Verma or Anuraag Kashyap could have done this movie.

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