I Me Aur Main: A contemporary love triangle

MUMBAI: I Me Aur Main (English for I Me & Myself) is a traditional theme of a love triangle made to look contemporary. A man is always known to be selfish and full of him and this film just names him so while going on to amplify his traits.

Producers: Shrishti Behl Arya, Goldie Behl.
Director: Kapil Sharma. 
Cast: John Abraham, Prachi Desai, Chitrangada Singh, Raima Sen, Mini Mathur, Sameer Soni, Sheena Shahabadi, Errol Peter Marks, Sameer Soni.

John Abraham is a totally one way street who is brought up to believe that he is the best, the world is his slave and that every woman would crave for him. Abraham has been bedding Chitrangada Singh for three years but is not ready to accept the relationship on a permanent basis. He dodges all her attempts to talk about marriage or for her to meet his parents. His selfishness reflects in the fact that since he consumes no milk and even has his coffee black, he refuses to pay the milkman when Singh‘s hands are full with other work.

Abraham has been a bully since childhood and his mother, Zarina Wahab, has only made it worse. He likes to shadow box in front of the mirror with his self-boosting chant, ‘I am the best, I am the best‘. His girlfriend of three years, Singh, has been docile and too much in love with him to pose any kind of challenge until one fine day he reneges on his promise to take her to Pune to meet his parents. She throws him out bag and baggage.

Abraham, ego hurt, shifts into a rented apartment unaware that he has left Singh pregnant. His next door neighbour is Prachi Desai, an independent and lively girl who is least impressed by this ‘I am the best‘ neighbour of hers. She soon starts cutting him down to size. To add to his discomfort, he has a new boss, Raima Sen, hired by his music company with more pay which only indicates Abraham has been found lacking in his work. She makes him look smaller at every opportunity she gets so that he knows who the boss is around there. Abraham soon takes a fancy to Desai. He is not alone in that. His mother, Wahab, who has come to stay with him, has also grown fond of her. Abraham has a sister who sees through her brother‘s vanity. Being a friend of Singh and being responsible for introducing both, she tries in vain to tell Abraham about Singh‘s pregnancy with his child.

Around this time, Abraham begins to realise things don‘t always work his way. Desai rebuffs his advances to get physical. At office, his boss sacks him because he wants to launch a new girl singer she does not think worth the effort. Abraham decides to launch her on his own at the goading of Desai and even before the launch event can start he is told about Singh‘s labour pains. And, in a stroke of scriptwriter‘s pen, he realises in one scene what he did not during previous 100 minutes of the film: that he needs to own up to fatherhood and to be by Singh‘s side.

Being a contemporary love triangle, Singh has outgrown Abraham and her love for him no longer exists. She is an independent woman with a good career and decides to play single mother. Abraham can now continue romancing Desai.

The script is half-baked and the direction gets little chance to shine. Considering the subject, music is not up to mark and even Naa jaane kahan se aayeehai, a remixed version of the Laxmikant-Pyarelal hit number from Chaalbaaz (1989) has been mucked up. John Abraham is okay. Singh is good while Desai shines. Mini Mathur, Raima Sen, Sameer Soni and Zarina Wahab support well.

I Me Aur Mein lacks appeal for youth, its target audience.

The Attacks Of 26/11: RGV‘s take on the Mumbai Attacks fails to please

Producer: Parag Sanghvi.
Director: Ram Gopal Varma.
Cast: Nana Patekar, Sanjeev Jaiswal, Farzad Jehani, Atul Kulkarni.

There is a dearth of ideas because there is no lure for good writers in the film industry. While some opt to remake foreign film, others remake South Indian films, and many have decided to remake old hits and even flops which they think they can better. Ram Gopal Varma decided to base a film on the 26 November 2008, attacks on Mumbai by Pakistani terrorists who killed innocent people with a hail of bullets and grenades. This is either an adventurous or a foolhardy idea, no in-between. Varma covers the initial shootings at the Taj, the Leopold Café and the CST Station.

The film is based on the book, Kasab: The Face Of 26/11 by Rommel Rodrigues. The very idea of making this film defies logic since there is nothing that the film can show that TV news channels did not show live over a period of three days while the attacks lasted.

The chain of events in the film starts from the cross-terrorists taking over the fishing craft Kuber, slaying its crewmembers and entering Mumbai through Colaba koliwada. It hurriedly documents the attacks on The Leopold Café, Taj, Cama Hospital and CST station (replaced here by Mumbai Central main line hall, probably, due to denial of permissions to shoot at CST). For some reason, it completely skips the attack on the The Trident and Nariman House. Thereafter, it proceeds to show the attempt to escape by Kasab and a partner and the capture of Kasab by the police.

That done, the film then resorts to showing what transpired between Kasab and the then joint commissioner of police, played by Nana Patekar; the sermons on Islam meted out by Patekar to Kasab who takes to sobbing. This is not the image of Kasab people have in mind. He is shown to be a wayward youth misguided by his handlers in the name of religion and jihad.

This account could well be hearsay as none of it is on public domain and of no solace to the viewers who saw the three day ordeal of Mumbaites during the attacks or to the families of victims.

The story is not worth making into a film and Varma only makes it worse with his shoddy handling. He even includes a scene or two from Jalianwala Baug massacre from the film Gandhi and adds an instrumental version of Gandhiji‘s favourite bhajan, Raghupati Raghav Raja Ram… at the end! The photography is poor. Nana Patekar‘s inquest by a committee is boring with none of the members showing a sign of expression. Sanjeev Jaiswal as Kasab is bad.

The making of The Attacks Of 26/11is not an adventure, it is pure foolhardiness.

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