Monday, 8 July 2013

Did Lootera loot my ears?

This blog is NOT about movie reviews. Hence please do not expect to read what to look out for in this film or how the songs influence the progress of it. This account is actually the wholesome experience I had while watching it. Its worth a share as I do not think Ill ever experience something like this again. After all some crucial lessons have been learnt.

Dont really know where to begin so I will start by telling you that two hours into the movie (it being two and a half hours long), I had a 'laugh fit'. Heard or experienced this ever? Basically its a condition where some trigger induces uncontrollable laughter and within minutes you so lose control over yourself that even when the trigger is long gone, you cant help but keep laughing! So I experienced this condition yesterday and I must warn you that it got so worse that I was hoping the movie doesn't end suddenly as the lights in the theater would embarrass me further. You can imagine how bad it was when I tell you that  the dupatta I was wearing (Yes! I was wearing one) was drenched with tears that were rolling out due to my incessant laugh!! So what the hell was so funny? The movie was certainly not. You must have all heard how 'intense' and 'picturesque' the movie is. No one must have told you yet that its funny! So why the hell was I laughing?

Well...largely because I am a little silly when it comes to digesting stupid things thrown at me. I am stubborn about NOT accepting them so I am known to give tough reactions to stupidity. Be it in a person or any damn thing that confronts me. So let me take you back to how it all began in the hall.

Most of you reading this watch your movies in multiplexes these days. Even I do. How many single screen halls remain in Delhi anyway? I have fond memories of watching our films in Paras or Sapna or Chanakya or Priya. But these days its a simple click and pay and park and watch era. However, Saurabh and I do watch some movies in this one single screen theater near our house that is still surviving the multi screen tsunami. The movies we like to watch here are usually the ones which have high mass appeal or the ones we hear are going housefuls. We actually still love the Balcony watching experience and we love to watch those rare flicks where the hall is FULL house. For instance we insisted in watching Dabangg in it as we knew the real fun of that flick will be with some hooting coming from the front stalls.

So there we were on a Sunday afternoon with Saurabh's Mom (who is a compulsive movie buff like us) at Vishal Cinemas.

To our delight, the hall was almost full. The seats were rickety, the crowd was mixed. So while we had people like us, we also had people who bring huge families to watch movies along with half their household articles as if they will never go back home. We settle in to our seats and as the screen is showing some Bomb disposal warnings and hysterically funny documentaries on 'Mere pati sharaab kab chorenge", we realise that people on the right of Saurabh and people just behind our backs will be the nuisance factors throughout the 3 hours. These are the down sides of such a Hall but usually this subsides as a 'good' movie picks up pace.

Yeah so now the movie begins. Some exotic locales emerge, a visibly healthy Sonakshi appears and some heart warming Father-daughter moments are served. I am the most emotionally charged fool among Saurabh and his Mom so I up my expectations that some heart wrenching cinema will touch me today. Then enters Ranveer Singh. Now before I share further, I must tell you that I absolutely adore Ranveer. I loved his energy in his first release and I have been following all his reality show appearances as I find him charming. So he appears on screen and apparently starts delivering dialogues. Now when you are watching a Movie in theater, do you bend forward to try and hear whats going on? Of course not! The Dolby surround ensures everyone hears the same sound. But I seemed to be getting lost in what Ranveer was saying! After about half an hour of his appearance I turned to my Mom in law to ask her what Ranveer just said. She looked at me in that darkness and said- "I couldnt hear!". We sat for another 10 minutes thinking maybe only we are stupid. But we soon  realized that everyone else he was talking to, we were able to hear! we just couldn't hear what the hell he was saying. I usually NEVER disturb Saurabh in movies so I kept sitting quietly sharing empty glances with Mamma as she looked equally lost. The movie moved slower than the tortoise in that old story but we kept sitting as most of it was shot outdoors. Every time Ranveer would appear, I would start rubbing my ears to at least catch one word of what he spoke. But hard luck. And in at least two such scenes the mobile phone of the guy sitting behind us rang and probably he was as bored as us, why else would he talk in normal pitch about his inability to pay the rent of his apartment this month as some "achanak kharcha" came and he had to also do some "dawa daaru" of his mother. When Interval happened I gave up on my attempts to hear the dialogues. Anyways by that time I had lost out on many a useful conversations between the lead pair. Little did we knew that the worse was about to come. All the scenes there after were shot in the dark. My already hassled Mom in law turned to me and said:

"What are they trying to show? That there was no electricity in the 50s?".

I soothed her discomfort by telling her: " This is aesthetic cinema. This is shot like this to add to the whole dramatic appeal."

 Poor thing sat back quiet. Just then a scene came where Divya Dutta, Ranveer and Sonakshi are in a room. A front stall guy started shouting loudly:

"Arre light to jala lo. Baatein baad main kar lena Ranveer Bhai. Light to jala lo"

My Mom in law who felt vindicated turned to me and said: "See even others are complaining. I wasn't wrong!"

So henceforth the struggle was not just in hearing. The challenge now was to even see with concentration!  We kept sitting as its rare that we walk out of movies. Usually we choose our movies with a gut feel and were sitting in this one as some friends had strongly recommended it the previous night. These days I always watch KRK's movie reviews on YouTube and I had warned Saurabh that its a "Maha" bore film. Anyways the movie kept changing scenes. All the Ranveer scenes were like blank spots for me as I wasn't making any efforts to see or hear him. Just then the "laugh trigger" happened. Some confrontation seemed to be ensuing between him and Sonakshi and he shouts- shouts for his standards. Because I usually talk in that pitch-

"SUNO. Meri baat SUNO".

As I heard the word SUNO I forgot the difference between the education levels of the front rowers in that hall and we the Balcony goers. I spoke up loudly, finally :

"Abey Sune kaise? Sunaai hi to nahi de raha!!!" (How do I listen? I just cannot hear anything)

Rest is history. I dont remember a scene after this. I started laughing due to the sheer audacity of Ranveer Singh to insist "SUNO". It was so ironical. As if he was talking to me! I had struggled for over two hours to SUNO him and here he was saying once again- SUNO!!

The movie ended. The ordeal ended. My MOM in law removed her glasses and wiped dirt from them. They had been put to some serious use today. However she missed hearing aids more!

Lessons learnt:

1) Believe KRK's reviews.
2) Make this post reach Ranveer somehow so he can be told that he honestly has a problem in being audible.
3) Our gut feel is right. Trust it!
4) Do not give up on single screen halls. They are the places a movie is judged by its true audience.
5) Being intense isnt the excuse for making boring cinema.

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