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  1. #1
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    Mar 2008


    Exclamation Harman-Priyanka better watch out!!!

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    Harman-Priyanka better watch out!!!
    Harman Baweja better watch out. Real-life chemistry doesn't always render itself to an arresting alchemy on screen. So Priyanka Chopra's endearing moral and visible support means zilch unless they sizzle as strangers starting from scratch (going up to wow) in Love Story 2050.

    Harman has a lot to learn from Saif and Kareena. Why is the real-life pair so thanda in Tashan?

    More importantly what got into an actor as astute as Saif to slip into a secondary status in Tashan? Did he lose the plot? Or was his role edited?

    Oh stop it! I felt like bleeping out the blah every time I heard those stupid soundbytes on the channels berating Tashan for not delivering. Shouldn't there be laws against demolishing a film's reputation on the first day by people who could have a thousand reasons for not liking what they saw?

    The man with the frown could have got a broken seat or he could just be sulking because his wife took excessive interest in Akshay Kumar's muscles. Or the kid who called Tashan bakwas could be miffed because his popcorn spilt over while he was ogling at Kareena coming out of the water.

    So could we have less of these Tashan ticker-trashing? It’s taken a toll. Tashan, in spite of a dream cast, is showing signs of toppling over, adding to the growing feeling that this is one of the worst years for Bollywood at the box-office.

    It's easy to write off a film that takes the status quo and twists it into unrecognizable shapes. So much easier and safer to stick to the tried-and-tested route and to cast stars as stars… dazzling the audiences with their aura rather than any deeper gyan of the grit that goes into making a picture more than just a run-of-the-meal ticket.

    I feel some of Tashan's aura was peeled off by the release of Race a few weeks ago. The promos and posters with the stars walking with an aggressive machismo towards the camera as a rock beat pounded their heartbeat in ricocheting rhythms, were identical in both.

    Even the cast was similar. No Akshay Kumar and Kareena in Race, true. And that's like saying no twin towers in New York.

    Like Rakeysh Mehra's Rang De Basanti and Sanjay Bhansali's Saawariya, Tashan invents a new language of cinematic communication. It takes the formula and turns it inside-out and then lets the audience float into a state of suspended disbelief as the stars acquire capricious shapes in the skyline.

    While the ifs and buts of director Vijay Krishna Acharya's whimsical wacky kick-ass flick will continue to be debated what remains incontestable is that Akshay Kumar has completely overshadowed his co-star.

    And not surprisingly so. Akshay has the author-backed role into which he sinks his teeth with a relish and an understanding that leave no room for games of one-upmanship.

    What surprises me even more is how an actor of Saif's caliber (have you seen the dizzying level of his performance in Omkara, Eklavya and Tara Rum Pum?) could fall for the second-lead trap at this stage of his career when he has gone passed the Race-post to prove he's one of the biggies of Bollywood.

    Tashan takes Saif back to the days when he played Shashi Kapoor to Akshay Kumar's Amitabh Bachchan in films like Keemat, Arzoo and Main Khiladi Tu Anari.

    Not since the time when Dilip Kumar completely overshadowed Raj Kapoor in Mehboob Khan's Andaz and Akshaye Khanna took over the show from Sanjay Kapoor in Mohabbat have we seen such a clear and unambiguous result in the game of one-upmanship.

    And isn't it awfully ironical that Kareena shares far more crisp and compelling chemistry with Akshay Kumar than Saif in Tashan? This, after sharing thanda vibes with Akshay in Talaash and Bewafaa!

    Just goes to show celluloid compatibility has nothing to do with your personal rapport with your co-star. There're actors like Kajol, Kareena and Tabu who can generate on-screen excitement with even a lamp-post. - Subhash K Jha



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