Do directors turn dumb, film after film? Imtiaz Ali certainly does, and how! To say the least, Ali’s latest Tamasha is crap and prompts a bunch of expletives to sneak out of my lips as I rush out of the cinema hall in utter disappointment.
If his Jab We Met was a soothing entertainer, the later ones that came in quick succession, ranged from mediocre to nauseating. And now Ali has reached a stage where I’m forced to believe that this man has completely lost it.
As far as locations go, Ali packed his bags and actors to Corsica – of all places – to trigger a no-holds-barred fling between two people in an alien land. The justification comes in the form of the leading lady’s fascination for the Asterix comic that had the two Gaulish superheroes on a Corsican jaunt (Oh My!). Asterix and Obelix would have been forced to call this bunch of Indians ultimately crazy if they would ever have come across Ali’s wasteful idea.
Okay, Corsica is fun. But then, Ali’s Don and Mona Darling are no more than just moaning morons who spent a few days in each other’s company mimicking the screen dons, talking coitus (of course with the beeps), and laughing and singing just for the hang of it. [Was it Dev Anand that Ranbir Kapoor was trying to mimic? Dev Anand wasn’t actor par excellence, but if it’s Dev Anand that Ranbir had in mind while hopping around and mouthing those dialogues, let me tell you, this Ranbir kid would take a lifetime perfecting Dev’s art.]
After the splendid days of fun in Corsica, the scene shifts to good old India and the whole Tamasha goes for a spin. The hero we see here is a straitjacketed office-goer who makes sure he is not just boss’ kid, but also papa’s boy. Devoid of fun flings, life moves on tightly held by a neck-tie and the usual hollow good mornings and non-committal ‘Yes Sir’ chants. But then, the lovelorn Laila doesn’t want her Majnu to be so stiff and schedule-driven. What Corsica gave her is what she craves in India. Will Don be able to replicate the boisterous fun bag he used to be in Corsica?
Ali waves his twisted imagination here. Lo and behold, the kid who never grew up starts missing his bachpan, and that too all of a sudden. The blazing fast revisit to Don happens once he realizes his childhood was lost somewhere by the way side, and he is grateful enough to prostrate before the dame who brought him back to ‘life’. Lame narrative, Ali!
Tamasha is the depths that Imtiaz Ali could hurl himself into. Once he fell, he didn’t quite stay put. He kept plumbing the depths, making us wish for the end credits to roll even before half time.
Even as one tries to remember what Tamasha on screen was, questions keep popping up. For instance, how did this hero dude end up in Corsica (at least for a few days) when he isn’t someone who (forget seeking a French holiday) wouldn’t dare ask his boss anything other than just nod to his stupid comments? Two, what were those twisted age-old love stories playing in the background trying to tell us? Questions are many.
As I try to forget the nightmare, let me wish Ali saner thoughts as he prepares for his next outing. And let me tell you, dearest Ali, my hard earned money and precious time on a Sunday afternoon spent on such stupid Tamasha is not a joke!
* Rating 1/5