Phillauri first. A fun song! We get to see more of Anushka young and in love in the past, and we get to see some happy wedding celebrations in the “present”. My favorite part is how the two eras are edited together. Which I hope they are able to capture in the finished film in some way, but I’m not sure if they can. This is such a modern song, it really wouldn’t make sense for the “past” scenes. It only works like this, if they are kind of tired in thematically, but that’s it.
The Anaarkali of Aarah trailer, this is the one that really really surprised me! Based on the look of the poster, it seemed like a fun sort of village comedy with a little bit of a message to it maybe. But from the trailer, HOO BOY! Looks like a total social message movie, very realistic, very gritty and hard to watch. So, I’m probably not going to see it. I didn’t even see Pink until it had been out for weeks and as a confirmed “important” film!
What I find really interesting about this is the marketing of it. The inter-titles of the trailer, and the poster they put together, that is selling it as this big glitzy fun kind of film. And then the actual scenes we see are more Peepli Live than Humpty Sharma.
In his autobiography, Karan talks about how Kaal taught him to trust his instincts, not just as a director, but as a marketer. He knew the film would flop as soon as he saw the rushes, and he knew the only way to save their investment was to throw on a couple of songs and start promoting them in heavy rotation. I don’t know if Dharma is officially involved in this film, it isn’t listed in the credits of the trailer. But I feel the touch of Karan, or some other marketing genius, in how it is being promoted.
If this really is a story about a powerful politician raping a dancing girl, and her fighting through the courts to get him punished, even if it means more abuse, being put in jail herself, etc. etc., then promoting it as a big fun film is kind of brilliant! Of course, the audience might be a little mad about the bait and switch after they buy the tickets, but hey, anything that gets them to see it!
And you know, I just thought of the one thing that might make me see it! No subtitles on the trailer, but I think there might have been some comments or references tying this “Anarkali” into the famous legendary one. The idea that maybe all powerful Prince Salim wasn’t such a great guy for seducing and destroying the life of a powerless dancing girl. I know that one shot of her cowering against the brick wall of a cell, that had definite “Beqas Pe Karam Kijiye” vibes.