"Ooo la la...Ooo la la...Tu hai meri fantasy..." the song started and the entire theatre went crazy with whistles & claps. Never has a film managed to evoke such emotions from a bunch of critics; it was really like watching them put aside their thinking hats and simply enjoying the moments. Milan Luthria's The Dirty Picture which assured to bring back the bygone era of the 80s, did so with such a promise that re-living those olden, golden days of dancing around the trees, healthy heroines and smart, witty dialogues is sure to put a smile on everyone's faces.
Promotions, controversies, controversial promotions, court cases, bans and criticism... Overcoming all these hurdles The Dirty Picture has finally released. Skin show, sleaze and a biopic of sorts (which is apparently just inspired and not based on) on the life of the southern siren Silk Smitha, The Dirty Picture is much more than just Dirty.
Sleaze, Sex symbol and Silk... You can say all these three in one breathe; you can criticize as much as you want, but Silk is indifferent. Hailing from a poor, traditional family and dreaming big to become an actress one day, Reshma (Vidya Balan) runs away from her home a day before her marriage and lands in the city of glamour- Madras which has been beckoning her for long. A very pretty, girl next door, with no extra-ordinary looks (she actually does look beautiful don't know why no one is ready to cast her) she tries to take the straight road, "Magar ghee agar seedhi ungli se na nikle toh ungli tedhi karni padte hai..." (Meaning: when things don't work your way, you change your way to make them work for you) and that is exactly what she does. One chance to do a sleazy dance number and she jumps at the opportunity. Director Abraham (Emran Hasmi) is traumatised that such a song is added to his "sensible" film and he makes sure that the song is removed from the movie. The movie goes flop so Selvaganesh (Rajesh Sharma), his mentor cum producer cum director, decides to re-launch the film with the song in it. Obviously, the film becomes a hit. But till this happens, Reshma has lost all hope and is packing her bags to head back home. But Selvaganesh takes her under his wings and turns gold from dust. Reshma is reborn (not in the literal Ekta Kapoor style, but symbolically) as Silk and thus starts her journey.
Silk becomes an overnight sensation but not without some "help". Her very first opportunity as an actress comes with a big surprise for her- she is cast opposite the southern superstar Surya (Naseeruddin Shah), who also happens to be her heart-throb. Soon things start heating up between Surya and Silk and Silk becomes Surya's permanent night-time fixation. But Silk is mistaken by this lust, for love and finally her bubble breaks.
Here onwards starts the downfall of the star. Heart-broken Silk finds a shadow of her dear Suryakant in his real brother- Ramakant (Tusshar Kapoor) and this is touted as a budding romance (read: lust) by the media. But Ramakant also turns out to be a hypocrite and abandons her. Suddenly Silk is jolted back to reality and realises that she has gone too far and now she has no one to call her own. Who will want to be associated with such a woman? Well, Abraham does (he is secretly singing- I hate you, like I love you...). He suddenly falls in love with her and confesses his feelings to this distressed damsel.
A shock, an act out of desperation and finally- THE END of a diva who changed the way heroines were portrayed in the movies.
Vidya Balan and Naseeruddin Shah deserve a standing ovation for their shocking yet, brilliant performances. They are so apt in their roles and so comfortable with what they do that it is impossible to imagine anyone else to play their parts. Vidya Balan is FAT and still so HOT which only reinstates that size-zero is a complete flop. There is a sequence which shows Silk & Shakeela (another hot southern siren who was the reason why Silk went out of action) in a face-off and even there Vidya Balan stands out and looks extremely voluptuous, yet graceful. Tusshar Kapoor is childish and he still can't act. His dialogues are so cheesy as if he himself has written them. Emraan Hashmi is just about alright. He has good dialogues but neither does he have much scope nor does he utilise his space to the fullest.
The plus points about the movie are definitely the performances, beautiful picturisation, "Ooo la la..." and the dialogues. Everyone except Tusshar Kapoor has excellent, witty dialogues but after a point even they sound over-the-top. Not each person can be so smart and witty right? After a while it simply feels as if they are trying too hard to impress with their dialogues. The story is straightforward and extremely predictable. The movie is so unnecessarily stretched that you want it to end and end soon. In the first part of the first half, the movie is fun to watch and you enjoy each moment with the "nakka mukka" playing in the background but then the movie just drops. Again after the interval, the movie picks up for a while but it again spirals downwards. Madhur Bhandarkar's Fashion was a movie which showed the rise & the subsequent fall of a starlet. The Dirty Picture also attempts the same but you hardly feel any sympathy towards Silk and the film doesn't reach you.
The Dirty Picture is brilliant in parts; it has strong star-cast, excellent performances... It makes you nostalgic and for those who don't know how the films were in those olden days, this proves to be a fantastic insight. But The Dirty Picture fails to reach, touch and make you feel for Silk, the star who came, shone, conquered and went into oblivion. But it deserves one watch at least, something that I don’t need to tell anyone.