Why did Amol Palekar choose to turn this short fantastic folktale into a rather longish full-fledged movie with Shah Rukh Khan, Rani Mukherjee and Amitabh Bachchan?
Not that I did not like the movie but I am not sure if one would actually like to pay to watch this movie. It’s a perfect film to watch on TV in between surfing channels or on the DVD so that you could fast forward the songs.
But sitting through the whole film requires just a little patience. If you already love the songs, then you might actually enjoy the movie. Or it does not make sense to sit and watch this rather long and slow movie which entertains, only if you are in the mood for watching offbeat cinema.
I believe that this movie needed more elements to make it engaging.
The film could have taken cinematic liberties to exploit the potential of the fantasy genre. Though Shah Rukh Khan plays a ghost, we really don’t know much about what ghosts cannot do in the film. Are there more such ghosts in the village? We don’t exactly know. All we know is that he’s a ghost who has fallen in love with the lonely bride whose husband has left her alone, as he goes away on business for five years the day after their wedding.
Since he’s a ghost, SRK is able to do pretty much everything from becoming whoever he wants to producing gold coins out of thin air to bringing rain overnight to the desert state to to making his guys win a camel race to getting Lachchi (Rani) pregnant with a baby (!). If everything’s possible and nothing is impossible, there is hardly any conflict or a serious crisis for a ghost. Which is why the film does not really haunt you. It would have been interesting to give the ghost a few limitations and bring these into play as the plot unfolds. It would have been interesting to add more ghost characters to add to the drama or comedy or at least add a sub-plot or two. The only other two ghosts in the movie are puppets who don’t seem to have any other power apart from narrating the tale. Which makes me curious about the world of ghosts and I learn absolutely nothing about them in the film but for the fact that they can do anything they want. At will!
Palekar probably found the tale interesting cuz of its core idea: a women’s conscious decision to choose who she wants to be with, after her newly wed husbands leaves home on business. But this like most of Shyamalan films does not really merit a feature length film. A short or a telefilm with lesser actors could have served the purpose too.
Cinematographer Ravi K Chandran does a damn good job yet again playing with red and orange shades to contrast with the yellow desert scapes of Rajasthan. SRK continues to play himself and seems to have ghost directed the romantic scenes. Rani Mukherjee is ravishing as usual and wears the sexiest cholis ever!
Watch it if you have the time and patience. You might actually like it.
On the whole, a decent effort. But not worth the time it takes to unfold. Personally, I kinda liked it.
Generally folktales are told to the children and has been passed on from generations. They are not complicated and they are not supposed to be. Its a bold attempt by amol palekar to make a movie which is simple by adding no frizz.
Ofcourse its not worth watching in a theatre.
You are right. But folktales dont have a feature length potential unless u wanna add something more to it..
amol palekar added songs. i wish he added more fun to it!
junk of a movie even though I watched it in my house fwd’ing all the songs as u aptly mentioned. To top it all, watching it, after knowing its been nomiated as India’s entry for Oscars, over the superbly done, words-fail-me BLACK was worse than a 3rd degree torture. Each time I watched this movie, the words the film board (or who-the F-ever) said that Paheli was chosen for the Indian values, made me want to puke on all of them. A women conciously commits adultery (ghost or no ghost) being called a projection of Indian values and tradition, was horrendous to say the least. Before I forget, the ghost making Lachchi pregnant with a baby (Oh-horrors-Indeed) did scare the S*** out of me. All in all a worthy crap to be missed, not to mention, this useless film stole a very realistic chance for an Indian movie to grab an Oscar.
WHAT THE EFF!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
This movie is a direct lift from an award-winning Kannada flick “Nagamandala” starring Prakash Raj… directed by TN Nagabharana!
The makers of Paheli didn’t even have the courage to give credit to the original..
When’s bollywood gonna stop stealing so cheaply?!
“This movie is a direct lift from an award-winning Kannada flick “Nagamandala” starring Prakash Raj… directed by TN Nagabharana!
The makers of Paheli didn’t even have the courage to give credit to the original..”
It is based on Vijaydan Detha’s story “duvidha”..
The filmmakers have given plenty of credit to the “original” story. Perhaps “T N Bhagabharana” should have given credit to Detha..so you would know who wrote it.
and bollywood is not a person..
and Amol Palekar is largely an independent filmmaker, not to be put in the league of bollywood directors.