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Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Salaam Namaste bhaiyo or behano

I know a sappy romantic comedy is not everyone's cup o' tea but I'm am one of the few who do like those movies and last night I got a chance to watch Salaam Namaste and I gotta say it was a riot! Don't come out and flame me because you think the movie has a story that goes nowhere or that it is not making any point or that it is just plain not plain Indian to do what the characters do. The beauty of this movie is that it doesn't pretend to be any of those. Take the movie at face value and enjoy the acting. It is a chick-flick and that's what it'll be no matter how you change it.

What struck me the most was, to quote "effortless natural chemistry", between Saif Ali Khan and Preity Zinta. It is incredible. I mean another hit like this and they will I'm sure join the ranks of the best on screen pairs in Hindi cinema. It is their chemistry that drives this movie. This is an actor's movie and not a movie that can stand by its story. The story is rather mediocre and doesn't even pretend to be anything special. But it is the director's treatment of the story that is so gratifying. It never bogs down and it keeps the laughter and the story moving at a fair clip. I especially love that in a story that is so simple as this one. Anyway, getting back to the point I was making at smoldering onscreen chemistry between couples. I think these two have the kind of chemistry that is just so natural on screen. There are no pretensions and there is really no acting. It is all quite natural and it seems to me even professional. They just seem to have that intangible quality that is so important in an onscreen couple to drive the movie. This makes me wonder, who do you think form the best on screen couple? Here are a few of my picks:

  • Raj Kapoor - Nargis (Awaara, Barsaat, Shree 420)

  • Dilip Kumar - Madhubala (Mughal-e-Azam)

  • Amitabh Bachchan - Rekha (Silsila)

  • Aamir Khan - Julie Chawla (Qayamat Se Qayamat Tak)

  • Anil Kapoor - Madhuri Dixit (Beta)

  • Shah Rukh Khan - Kajol (Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge)

  • Saif Ali Khan - Preity Zinta (Kal Ho Naa Ho, Salaam Namaste)

Another observation from the movie. What is up with these debutant directors? They do a fantastic job in their first movie and then its all down hill from there. Happened with that guy from Dil Chahta Hai as well. They need to keep a level head with their success and they need to keep themselves sharp. They lose focus and their creativity just goes way down. I hope this guy is better than the others. I would like to see more from him.

Anyway, please do come by and nominate your favorite onscreen pair. I think without these two actors this movie would have been a bust. The movie drives forward only because of them and everything including the story is just there to support them. It is a fantastic example of an actor's movie and not a story-based movie. It is fascinating, hilarious and entertaining. I love it!


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