Well, these are very different! And yet, the same, both are all about “young people growing up in modern India”, that theme that movies and internet think pieces love to explore.
I’m gonna start with Rajshri, because I have more to say about them. They just dropped the trailer for their new movie. They had a movie in 2016, and Prem Ratan Dhan Payo in 2015, so they aren’t exactly stagnating. But they tend not to have big BIG releases that often, ones that are promoted enough to make it to the corner of twitter where I live. This feels, so far, like an attempt at a big film, one that will get some notice.
And the biggest thing about it so far is the clean break from the “family” image. I am a little proud of myself, when the trailer started and I saw that it was about friends, I thought “aha! Because friends are like family at that age, so it really is still a family movie!” And then that turned out to be the tagline.
Anyway, I like it! It feels refreshingly different so far. Even just the costumes, they aren’t the over the top international branded unrealistically skin tight look of Student of the Year, but also not the extremely old-fashioned look of Sui Dhaaga. More in between. Same with the rest of the styling, good basic looks, not something that would obviously take 2 hours of gel and make-up every morning.
If that’s what the story as a whole feels like, I’m gonna love it. I don’t need another fantasy of traditional India with arranged marriages and young men and women who don’t even talk to each other. And I also don’t need another fantasy of urban India where everyone meets in clubs and has casual sex and whatever. But give me a nice story about college friendship that turns to love, and that I can get behind.
What do you think?
Oh, and there’s also the Gully Boy song. Sung by Ranveer, which, okay??? India has such a long tradition of playback singing and I really don’t see why they couldn’t let the person who wrote the song, sing the song. I suppose it’s a cool promotional touch, and I am sure Ranveer loved doing it. And he can do the whole Western thing and talk about how he got under the skin of the character by learning to rap and whatever. But I would still rather have the person who wrote the song and imagined how it would be delivered and usually performs his own writing, sing the song.
Of course, I am also terribly prejudiced against Gully Boy since the first trailer so I am just hating on everything right now. You watch, it’s gonna come out and I’m gonna love it and retroactively change my opinion on everything.