Last week, I joined a throng of movie-goers to watch Guru after frantically arranging tickets to it. Yes frantically, because in Bangalore, there are hardly any theatres, fewer still that play Hindi movies, lesser in number that deliver and none that deliver to my office. Anyway, I went in and saw one of the most-awaited movies of 2007. And it was worth it. Guru is a fabulous movie that in the finest of cinematic tradition draws you in even while your saner self is enumerating its flaws.
Anyone who doesn’t like the movie is welcome to not like it but say it is because of Abhishek and I will object. I remember being extremely skeptical of this actor way back when he debuted in Refugee and boy am I eating my words! Intense, playful, romantic, tongue-tied or delivering a sales pitch – this guy is incredible. In Guru, Abhishek delivers a stellar performance that puts him (I would say) in Aamir’s league. My favorite scene is especially when he convinces Aishwariya’s father to let them marry – the way he appeals to both the man’s business sense and emotional side to win her hand is brilliant.
The rest of the cast unfortunately pales in comparison. None of the supporting actors are given anything to work with so when I say Aishwariya is adequate, it is because she is given little and what she is given, she manages with aplomb. Madhavan and Vidya Balan are frankly unnecessary and I experienced instant boredom whenever they came on the screen. Mithun is a revelation - however, I would have liked to see more of a struggle between his conscience and his heart. Even the story of Abhishek’s rise is left to songs and allusions to relate.
Guru is essentially about Abhishek and while one may not want to spend as much as I did (an obscene 225 bucks for the 4th row from the screen) to see it, one should see the movie.
Barely two days later, the much awaited announcement of marriage between Guru’s stars – Abhishek and Aishwariya - was made, to the surprise of no-one except perhaps the two concerned. Suffice to say, I believe Abhiwariya will be the sole topic of conversation for the next month and beyond. TV channels, newspapers, water coolers and canteen will abound with opinions on how he/she could have done much better, it won't last, when are they actually getting hitched, whether a 3-yr age difference matters, whether Ash looked better in her shaadi ka joda or in Cannes and if Abhishek should shave his beard for the ceremony. And no prizes for guessing who will be gleefully watching!