20 Comments

They Said What?! Bebo Is Sour Grapes, SRK Is Coffee Angel, KJo Is Talentless & The Barfi! Battles!!

They Said What?! #1: Take No. 92 In The On-Going PC-Bebo Frenemy War

Mwahahaha, it’s PC’s turn now bitchaaaaz!!!!

Let me paraphrase the sniping that went down in the last few days:

Bebo: Fashion? National Award? Psshhhh, whatever. Heroine is a bajillion times better. OBVIOUSLY. Coz I’m in it.

PC: Wassup Bebo? Jelllzzz that you got no national award, Ms. SOUR GRAPES? Lookatme I got a national award, an international single and loads of critical acclaim for Barfi! (national award #2 is on the waaaay).

Actually, she really said Sour Grapes.

You guys, you know what’s coming right? When Heroine hits, there’s gonna be all sorts of debates in both camps about whose performance was “braver” and more award-worthy,  Bebo’s in Heroine or PC’s in Barfi.

Team Bebo: Just coz you play autistic doesn’t make you a good actress.

Team PC: Please, Bebo couldn’t play Jhilmil even with a 1.5 crore costume budget.

Meanwhile, both Heroine and Barfi! have both been shortlisted for the OSCARS which is like all sorts of ROFLLMAOBAHAHAHAHAHAHA because

a) Madhur Bhandarkar at the Academy Awards (I rest my case)

and

b) Barfi‘s copied/lifted/inspired from so many Hollywood films the Oscar committee will be like “yawn, been there done that who can we sue?” (more on that below)

They Said What?! #2: Anubhav-SRK Coffee Bonding

Meanwhile if anyone was wondering about how things are going between Anubhav Sinha and SRK post Ra.One, they needn’t worry. Nothing says love like a coffee machine!

Once again I paraphrase some tweets:

SRK: Oh dude, sorry couldn’t make it to your company launch thingie but I shall show up with a Coffee Machine to make up for my tardiness!!

Anubhav Sinha: You are my Coffee Angel!!

Actually, he really said Coffee Angel.

They Said What?! #3: KJo-Basu Talent Wars

I mean….

Basu’s Reply: a BIG thank you from the bottom of my heart!! to say what you said needs courage,loads of love and a biiiiiig !! heart! hats off!!

Hehehe, okay so am I reading this wrong? Because to me it sounds like this:

KJo: I’m such a talentless hack.

Basu: Yes, yes you are, but it takes guts to say that dude, hats off!!!!

Hahahaha, poor Kjo.

But why is he forever walking around with an “I suck” cloud hanging over his head? Wasn’t Bhansali “the god of all filmmakers” just a few years ago? The only thing he ever seems to have any confidence in is his fashion sense which, hellooo girlfriend, totally ironic.

Anyway,  no need to feel so “limited, inferior and talentless” Karan because one man’s pom-pom is another man’s Chaplin. See? —–>

Barfi! Battles!! Film Snob Twit-rage!!!

I’m surprised it took this long for this outrage to hit twitter because there was so much in Barfi! that was inspired/ copied (homage, tribute blah blah) that I was a little taken aback that some hard-nosed critics were so gaga over it. I’m not much of a film snob at all so I didn’t take much issue with it (I mean, hello Dil Hai Ke Manta Nahin is one of my all time favorite movies and it’s COMPLETELY copied from It Happened One Night).

But when the corner of film-land that is populated by “Commercial Bollywood sucks all day all night” folk don’t have an issue with all the copying, I’m left scratching my head.

There are a couple posts – the initial and original one is here by Tanqeed, and MoiFightClub later picked up on that and did a post of their own comparing some of the lifted scenes. You can join the debate there if you wish but I’m gonna stay out of the snob-fire safe and sound here on my dehati-I-heart-Bollywood blog.

The issue isn’t that yet another Bollywood film has copied scenes from Hollywood (and accusations were flying left and right about how eventually every film is a copy of every other film) because of course, this is nothing new. For me the issue is that it’s been so highly praised for its “originality” and the “magical” quality of the direction.

As I said in my review, the magical frou-frou stuff didn’t work for me at all but the heart and substance of the story (the three characters), the striking performances that evoked the right emotions, and the love story was superbly crafted. Stylistically it was nothing innovative, just a re-creation. Inspired or copied, Barfi was just sliced and diced from various “magical” genre films that always seem to find favor with a certain group of critics simply because the style is more artsy fartsy.

As for whether it’s a legitimate “tribute” to Chaplin or Jeunet, I’d say there’s a huge difference between a tribute and a copy-paste job. To pick an example, RGV’s Sarkar was a cohesive tribute (Godfather) but with a distinctive RGV stamp, whereas there was hardly any original director’s voice in Barfi! other than “these are the films I love and here I have recreated them” (though credit has to be given to Basu for extracting such fine acting from all three leads).

Anyway, I’d still say that overall, I enjoyed the film because it moved me, but the critical acclaim was definitely a bit over the top for what the film actually was.

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20 comments on “They Said What?! Bebo Is Sour Grapes, SRK Is Coffee Angel, KJo Is Talentless & The Barfi! Battles!!

  1. Haha! Seriously, heroine for Oscar, no way!
    Can’t comment about barfi cos I haven’t watched it yet.

    And, LOL, nice deciphering of the tweet that anurag tweeted to kjo. ;)

    • Lool its funny that you can comment on Heroine without having seen it.

      Shows how little people expect from this movie.

      • However great the movie may be, it won’t be worth sending to Oscars for sure :)
        I admire both Madhur and Kareena, but still, no.
        And no, expectations are sky-high, what with all the hype surrounding the movie!

  2. I can always trust you to give the most objective of objective opinions, get filmy. :) <3

  3. The chase scene has been “inspired” from Mani Ratnam .. just adding to the ongoing discussion abt the alleged plagiarism http://www.bollywoodlife.com/news-gossip/barfi-the-ultimate-tribute-to-mani-ratnam/
    I have a nagging feeling that many more scenes would be lifted including PC’s autistic act in parts… and tbh I am not disappointed .. I get cynical when someone all of a sudden shows brilliance in their work when there was nothing before !

    • ppj,

      yeah more and more scenes are coming out of the woodworks…I’m just glad that it’s giving the snobs a run for their money, I never thought it was original, but it was enjoyable and would’ve been better without all the homage sequences. The story had substance, he could’ve just told it straight without all the embellishments.

      • Yeah yeah ..its funny how they hailed it as a masterpiece and now that things are getting exposed , they seem to be saying its fine..LOL… way to bash mainstream cinema just coz its mainstream and looks obvious..this one looked soo hatke that sometimes I feel thts the only reason this one got praised soo much in the first place.. forgive my lashing out but I was damn irritated with all the critics reviews especially this time coz they seemed too good to be true and somewhere I did not agree with most of them completely. People who are calling its okay that its “inspired” are just validating their own judgement of the film instead of giving a total unbiased opinion!

  4. Wooohoo!! PC – Bebo Bitch Fest continues.. I think they should incorporate such cat fight sequences in Heroine too (and Bitchy Bebo tops all the polls on catfights)! Popcorn lao.. ;-)

    Not a fan of either, but IMO Kareena is the one who starts with all this. And the way she says is fun to watch. The way her eyes (nazar) change, that sly smile, head tilting, pouting, dumbness, fakeness, and everything just so perfect. ;-)

    As if her being No.1 & considering herself brave enough to do the role (which NO ONE else could have done in her position) was not enough, she starts with the ”No National Award” non sense. Bas, enough now. I just want Heroine to release soon, so that all this nonsense stops. :-|

    But then India will be plagued by her wedding. :-(

    And regarding Barfi, i’d say i liked the film; loved the performances, cinematography & music, thats it. All this plagiarism,etc lets just leave it there. It has become common now.

    • Rahul,

      Mwahaha, PC-Bebo war, this is just the beginning! And I suspect it’s never going to calm down any time soon. PC may have been relatively pc until now, but with all her recent success there’s no reason for her to back down. Plus you know Bebo is Takedown Queen so… *rubs hands together with glee* :p

      As for Barfi, yeah plagiarism was not my issue, but the misplaced acclaim was like hain??

  5. This is the first time since my hiatus that I wish I had been following the daily deluge of filmi news!!! WOW! After the “respectable” critics gushed over how original Barfi (*barf*) was to find out that like 90% of it was copied from other films…?

    BRB LOLING FOREVER.

    I like Basu well enough as a director but he himself needs to be given a story and he needs oversight – I think Kites was the perfect amount of Basu the director.

    • FG,

      Yaaaah!! This is total retribution time for you as I know you’ve been a Barfi-hater from the start. Have no idea what the “respectable” critics were on and how all of them failed to mention all the copy-lifts, even the most obvious one in the form of The Notebook! The over-gushing was totally uncalled for, it was more like they all just *reaallly wanted* to like the film simply because it was so different.

      As for Basu, I still haven’t seen Kites but personally I enjoyed Gangster the most, followed by Metro though I’m sure someone will let me know if those were copies of something too. :p

      • I don’t think any serious critic missed the references and the inspiration from other films. Quite a few of the respectable critics (Baradwaj Rangan, for one) actually pointed out those references, and none of the more serious, non-trade-analyst-y critics (Anupama, Raja Sen) praised it without reservations. Most of them seemed to say that the film was beautiful, had flaws, and was clearly inspired by several sources (most of them cottoned on to Chaplin; the Hollywood Reporter’s reviewer mentioned Jeunet). I don’t really take the reviews of Taran Adarsh and his ilk seriously, but, other than them, I don’t see any reviewer calling the film perfect and completely original. I think Baradwaj Rangan hit the nail on the head when he called it an Indian film for those who don’t watch European cinema, but, even as I was watching the film, the bits and gags that were from other films (and one can’t help but notice several of them since they’re from widely watched classics like Singin’ in the Rain) didn’t seem ripped off; they seemed like homage. And I loved the film just because it so effectively made me love it, and I suppose several of these critics felt the same way; the film is lovable and sincere, despite its flaws. I was hesitant to watch it, since I was wary of PC’s performance, but a friend in Australia strongly urged me to go. I went with friends who don’t watch too many Hindi films but who’ve seen many of the films Barfi! doffs its cap at, and they loved it too. And, judging by how its business is growing with word-of-mouth, people across the India and outside it are loving it and telling their friends to go.
        And I can’t help but Basu credit for his direction, because there was so much that was skillful and startling about the film apart from those “inspired” bits. The way he directed the actors, the way he made Bengal come alive, the way he managed to make everything in the film so deeply emotional without tipping over into maudlin-land, and his balanced hand in depicting period detail (without throwing it in the audience’s face).
        I just don’t think it’s fair to pre-judge a movie without having watched it. I am not an Akshay Kumar/OTT South masala fan, but that didn’t stop me from watching Rowdy Rathore and enjoying quite a few things about it. Getfilmy, I love that you went into the movie and were neither hating on it or pretending to be more charmed by it than you actually were. I think a lot of people were very charmed by it, though, no matter what source parts of it took inspiration from or paid homage to.

      • Also, the Kangna-Sharman storyline in Metro was inspired by the Billy Wilder classic, The Apartment. Just had to tell you. (LOVE that movie, though) ;)

        • Thanks Sal :)

          Of course the critics *mentioned* the references, they just didn’t get into how in-detail, shot by shot, frame by frame copied those homage scenes were. I feel that should’ve been a bit more problematic for them than it was, in view of all the gushing that was going on. It was the “all hail the next masterpiece” attitude and heaping SO much praise on Basu that was surprising (maybe not in their written reviews as much, but certainly on twitter) – I didn’t feel it was all that. Anupama did get a lot of heat for her review, which I agreed with.

          A lot of those homage sequences just got in the way of the story for me. Nonetheless, this isn’t to take away from a lot of stuff that was there to be appreciated – I mean Ranbir by himself was absolutely riveting and the cinematography was gorgeous, plus the emotions were spot on and I can never resist a good love story.

          As for pre-judging a film, it really is wrong on principle but I think even the best of us can’t help but bash a film that just rubs us the wrong way once in a while – I know I did it for Joker so…. *guilty* :/

  6. Thanks so much for an entertaining summary of news I otherwise wouldn’t care about. Except of course for KJo getting spnaked – that’s ALWAYS good to read about. Also, even though I still want to see it, nice to know that my initial “derivative” reaction to the very first Barfi trailer was right on the money.

    • Stuart,

      Oh you KJo-hater!! LOLz. ;)

      And yeah, the derivative reaction was right on the money. My feeling after the trailer was that Basu was paying homage to that oeuvre of filmmaking so it didn’t bother me as much, but I wasn’t expecting it to be literally copy-pasted into the film. Still, there’s a lot to make up for it – Ranbir and Ileana top my list of reasons to watch and the love story really is touching.

  7. Priyanka, Kareena, Karan – the many shades of passive aggressive bitchiness.

  8. GetFilmy, I agree with all your points. The difference between Hollywood reviews and Bollywood reviews reminds me of when Billu Barber (which I LOVED) got GOOD REVIEWS in the west, but was panned in India, both critically and commercially! I have actually blogged about this before too.

  9. i’m here in a hotel lobby, reading your blog. and yes i Lol’d because as soon as i read that tweet i knew that he threw some serious shade at K-jo. hilarious. I wont comment on Barfi because I havent SEEN IT.( i wish i could put that in bold) as for Kareena….the beat goes on. I was just saying to my husband, when are these Bolly girls gonna get it, your shelf life is limited, 40 is coming, at least stop with the shade throwing and give props where its due, its a grown woman thing i suppose. great post.

  10. These actresses need to take a page from Aishwarya’s life and start branding themselves instead of exchanging catty-remarks in the media. SMH.

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