Mocking the Khans of Bollywood

Cineswami takes a dig at Shahrukh, Aamir, Salman and Saif Ali Khan and also Sanjay Dutt, while telling us about Gestures, a new silent film in Kannada and also actor Priya Anand’s entry in Aishwarya R Dhanush’s new film

Director Sairam Shanthakumar has rolled cameras on Gestures, ostensibly a Kannada film but in reality a silent film in 99 languages. Confused? Not to worry, Cineswami is at hand to explain all. The leads of the film are Dhruva Sharma and Spoorthi. Both actors are speech and hearing impaired and the film will therefore be played out in sign language with all the songs also being only in instrumental rather than vocal versions. Thought bubbles will pop up around the leads, reflecting what they are thinking at any given moment and these, being customisable, will be in 99 different languages.

As a nation, we are often cruel to the unfortunate souls who cannot hear or speak and we don’t pause to think the distress the many instances of casual cruelty can cause. Also, we feel the need to classify and pigeonhole. For example, look at how that that great shining example of a silent film, Pushpaka Vimana, was classified at the 1988 National Awards. It won the ‘award for the best film providing popular and wholesome entertainment’ and the citation in parentheses next to the film’s title had the word Kannada. Now, like Gestures, the film was shot entirely in Bangalore, but read slowly if you’re losing me here, it was a SILENT film. The director Singeetham Srinivasa Rao had directed films in all the south Indian languages, the male lead Kamal Haasan had acted in the same languages, besides Hindi and Bengali and ditto minus the Bengali for leading lady Amala. The villain Tinnu Anand was a successful director of Hindi films and had acted in Tamil and Hindi films. So there was no call to classify the film as Kannada.

Meanwhile, Priya Anand has joined the cast of Aishwarya R Dhanush’s Vai Raja Vai. Anand has tasted success and failure in equal measure. Her winning turn in English Vinglish was counterbalanced by the disastrous Rangrezz and in Tamil, the dire 180 was evened out by the delightful Ethir Neechal. Her hero in Vai Raja Vai is Gautham Karhik who is no stranger to failure having debuted with the flop Kadal, though he personally won favourable notices. With Kadal, Mani Ratnam proved again that just his name alone is not enough to open a film just as Aishwarya found out with 3 that just being Rajinikanth’s daughter does not guarantee success.

As we cannot end without taking potshots at the Khans, here goes.

Saif Ali Khan (yes, we are elevating him to senior level for the purposes of this discussion) + zombie = good and reflection of real life.

Salman Khan – why are you changing the title of Mental when it is so accurate and resonates with reality?

Shahrukh Khan – why don’t you take Yusuf Pathan’s place in KKR and send him to act in Chennai Express? Surely better for all concerned?

Aamir Khan – why do you regularly appear in drag? Is there something you want to tell us?

And though he is not a Khan we beseech the apex court to give Sanjay Dutt more time – in jail.