For someone touted to be the next showman after Raj Kapoor, Subhash Guy seems to be trying way too hard if ‘Kisna’ is any show of effort, cinema and frustration.
Reproduced below is the complete screenplay along with character sketches, as found from Guy’s scribbling pad.
Kisna (title role):
Kisna MUST play the flute cuz he’s called Kisna, write a song somewhere in the film cuz he’s the warrior poet and also do a sword fight cuz a sword looks really cool on the posters and publicity material. Remember Braveheart? Remember Asoka? Exactly!
Reason for casting: Random Bollywood belief No.786: Vivek Oberoi, with unkempt beard/stubble, can act. Not that it is required.
Guy’s Note: Give him hair longer than he had in Company, it will cover half his face and his acting skills, of course.
Suderman’s take: Vivek Oberoi’s best role after ‘Company’ (hang on and read the whole sentence) was in a village called Devanapattinam where he built huts for the Tsunami affected. In Kisna, he’s just doing the lead role, which even Keanu Reeves could have done. Period.
A white heroine, who would show her bare back at least thrice in the movie and do a Mandakini in Ram Teri Ganga Maili, Censor Board obliging. But no, our Censors didn’t. So does she at least feature in a Kiss? Na!
Reason for casting: Firang actress won’t have a problem going topless. Plus, International feel and flavour.
Guy’s Note: Things to do before I die: Tender firang actress who’s not even half my age. Tick.
Suderman’s take: Awaiting Director’s cut DVD to see if it was really worth casting her.
Reason for casting: Half-Tarzan-Half-Yoga-Full-Circus-hanging-from-a-tree routine.
Guy’s Note: Things to do before I die: Indian Lady Tarzan with flexible body. Tick.
Suderman’s take: Subhash, Man! You are one lucky Guy!
After 30 minutes of a build-up and showing the little triangle involving little Kisna and little Katherine and the making of Little Lady Tarzan. Some great camerawork and one awesome Udit Narayan number later, make Amrish Puri bump off Katherine’s father and send Kisna to her rescue. Insert: Sharvani doing Half-Tarzan-Half-Yoga-Full-Circus-hanging-from-a-tree routine.
The rest of the movie, make Kisna and Katherine on the run, as they escape Amrish Puri (who interestingly died, probably after watching rushes of this movie) evil Prince Harming and communal riots during Partition, thanks to Umrao Jaan wannabe (a fantastic Sush) and good Indian Samaritans Om Puri, Hrishita Bhat and Vivek Mushran. Insert: Sharvani doing Half-Tarzan-Half-Yoga-Full-Circus-hanging-from-a-tree routine.
After three struggling hours, Kisna fulfils his karm (protecting Katherine and getting up, close and personal with the babe after she takes a dip in the Ganga, Mandakini style) and dharm (getting married to Sharvani in between her doing Half-Tarzan-Half-Yoga-Full-Circus-hanging-from-a-tree routine). And the movie comes back to Aaj Tak and the old hag who wishes she (were) Rose from Titanic. (Thank you again Guy, for not repeating the Mandakini act with the firang!)
*Suderman flips through Guy’s scribbling pad curiously and finds it finally: Things to do before I die: Old Firang Hag*
Pass. One viewing itself felt like suicide. A Re-view? Go find another idiot.