LIFE

Poor content

JULIE (Hindi)

BEAUTIFUL MIND... bold profession. That is the punchline of Deepak Shivdasani's film on the life of a girl in the oldest profession. Bare body, ugly film, they might have added. Here comes a film that makes your worst nightmares come true. And makes you wonder, why, just why, does Bollywood insist on making films at all, if this is all it can offer in the name of entertainment.

Here is a film with the "story" of a girl who starts sleeping with every man she comes across after being jilted in love by one of the species. The fellow, the man she was in love with, had asked her to sleep with a prospective business partner. She also finds time and opportunity to open more than her body to a millionaire, who looks never to have broken into a sweat along the way.

Interested? Well, if you are still game and insist on succumbing to temptation, keep your eyes and ears open for Neha Dhupia, who seems to have forgotten her clothes in the wardrobe and left her brains in the deep freeze. Clad in tops, the kind that won't always suffice for men's handkerchiefs, and minis that can be swapped for those colourful undies a men's inner garments company has taken to advertising with real zest, she has a figure that can do with some trimming.

By the way, she also possesses acting skills that can do with a quick visit for a capsule course to the friendly neighbourhood acting school. If acting is not her cup of tea, she has a voice that needs a make-over.

The director realised as much and opted to have her voice dubbed. Pity, he forgot there should not be that jarring discrepancy between Dhupia's lips and the artist's voluble ones.

The whole film suffers from lopsided priorities. It hurtles from one clich� to another — we have Goa and liquor, Mumbai and high-society pimps and men with a glad eye, and Delhi peopled by politicians — and hurts the cause of women in the unfortunate profession. It is just the kind of film that should goad the right-thinking individuals into action. Even if Shivdasani has done it under the licence of artistic freedom, it is a case poor in content, and probably poorer in intent.

Must you watch it? Well, if you do, do look out for Priyanshu as the lover boy trying valiantly to save a sinking ship. He is not great, but in a film so roundly despicable even mediocrity is a virtue.

Ziya Us Salam

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