Thursday, December 29, 2005

Venal Cinema's Second Coming

Management professors generally dot their year-end recollections with technical jargon which only an incestuous circle of trainees and consultants can relish in the true sense of the term. Think about it, how many of us would be really interested in reading about Digital Rights Management or Venture Capital funding when we'd rather cozy up with a Daisy Miller (my current read, thanks to Azar Nafisi) and a hot cuppa coffee?

But trust our Indian gurus to spring delightful surprises. IIM-A professor T.T. Ram Mohan writes in the Economic Times on that one event in the year gone by that jolted his imagination. No, it's not SAP, neither is it Internet management or global supply chains. Heck, it's not even Peter Drucker's death.

It is...hold your breath...Madhur Bhandarkar's scathing critique of glamour and glitz, the seedy Page 3.

While the professor is quite besotted with the film's premise, it did nothing to stir my fantasy. Bhandarkar has picked up the trash of tinseltown and assembled it into 3 hours of unabashed rigmarole. There is no sensitivity or directorial coherence; just a long and hard look at a way of life whose purportedly charmed member Bhandarkar himself is (thanks very much, Pretti Jaiin). You can't possibly describe this voyeuristic hotch-potch as cinema. Bhandarkar agrees, but he prefers calling it a docu-drama. Whatever!

Up next, the second in the trilogy (he is sounding oh-so-much like Deepa Mehta now) Corporate.

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