I saw the trailers of Dhobi Ghat when I last visited the theatre for Yamla Pagla Deewana. From the trailers it looked like this would be a movie with substance, keeping those expectations I planned for Dhobi Ghat on Saturday and this time to get tickets with good seating was bit tough, I had no other option only to watch the movie in the front rows.
Dhobi Ghat is narration of story between Arun, Shai, Munna, Yasmin and Mumbai. Dhobi Ghat is a movie which tries to portray the lifestyle and sentiments of the Mumbaikars.
This movie also carries an undercurrent on how Indians are more interested in others life take it from Yasmin who shoots other neighbor households and her bai in camera and later Arun who instead of throwing those personal cassettes watches them.
As a debutant director, Kiran Rao who took such a complex subject as her first film managed it very well, it was all realistic, but the screen play was bit complex there were almost three stories which were running side by side. This kind of screen play is often seen in television serials but not in movies. The whole movie was of One hour and forty minutes and most of the times I was checking my watch. For people like me who would like to see movies for entertainment would not like this one.
Aamir khan (Arun) did a splendid job in the film barring few sequences where he speaks English bit fast than expected.
Munna (Prateik Babbar) a dhobi, rat killer and who also aspires to be an actor, he was the second most important character of the film. His acting was something which needs to be worked upon but the emotions he delivered when his cousin was killed and at the end of the movie were remarkable.
Shai (Monica Dogra) who played the role of an America return investment banker who managed to get grant to study on various classes of the society in India. Her character demanded her as an ultra modern girl which she did well.
Yasmin (Kirti Malhotra) this is the character which touched me the most and I would not disclose much about the character. All I can say is she did full justice to the role offered to her.
There is one character of an old lady who never speaks to anyone; I don’t know why it was kept in the film only the director might know about it.
On the whole the there is not much to speak about the technical departments as it had no songs no good background score and most of the scenes were short in chawl or nearby streets. To me it looked like a deliberate attempt for Oscars.
I have been to Mumbai but was not able to relate the lifestyle which is actually there and to what it was shown in the movie. It remembered me the old joke where a teacher asks her rich student to write essay on poor child. Means you cannot have a dhobi who can sit with a high society girl and accompany her for a drink and also who dresses lavishly, in fact common man would not have such clothes which the Dhobi in the film was wearing.
I like stories which require deep thought only if the movie tries to narrate it in a simpler way. As she (Kiran Rao) mentioned that this movie is not for everyone was correct. It is definitely not for me, it is for those high society art loving people who can actually intercept the story of dhobi ghat.