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Tamasha …….A dull show

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Among the various genres of movies are psycho thriller and romance. Tamasha is a combination of these two and can be called a psycho-romance. The title of the film sounds like a 1980s B grade movie and does not quite go with the film, though. Like in most of his films, here too, the director, Imtiaz Ali, counts a lot on scenic locations. He has shot the romantic parts of the film in the Mediterranean island of Corsica.

Imtiaz probably watched something like Roman Holiday before he sat down to write the film. It starts in a similar fashion, with a meeting between Ranbir Kapoor, a mid-level executive and Deepika Padukone, a tea estate tycoon. Both know that this is a temporary encounter and agree not to reveal their real names or backgrounds to each other. They also decided on not having a physical relation or body contact!

Both explore the beautiful island and sing and dance with the local performers. Ranbir has been fond of listening to stories since his childhood—myths, legends and folk—anything. He then loves to act out the characters. He introduces himself as Don who is on the radar of the police from 12 countries. In a song he sings with Deepika, he mimics late Dev Anand. That is his idea of fun in his life.

The holiday comes to an end and both have fallen in love but decide to stick to their agreement. However, Deepika, when she is leaving Ranbir while he is still sleeping, can’t resist her urges and gets into his bed.

Back in India, Deepika has taken over the tea company in Kolkata from her father while Ranbir joins his dull job in Delhi. He is sincere and hardworking in his otherwise dull life. Deepika is on a visit to Delhi in connection with her business where she learns that Ranbir frequents a restaurant and decides to meet up with him. They meet and the romance resumes. Ranbir thinks it is time to pop the question and, amid a get-together with a handful of friends, he proposes to Deepika with a ring planted on a cake.

Deepika then realizes that this is not the Ranbir she fell in love with. The Ranbir she knew in Corsica was a fun loving, happy-go-lucky man. The one she knows now in India is a dull man with a set routine with no excitement in life. He is not ambitious, does his job routinely, also meets up with her every evening, they spend time together and that is that. She does not think this is the man and this is the kind of life she wants to get into. They part. But Ranbir takes it hard. From here on, Deepika vanishes from the scene and it is all about Ranbir. He goes berserk, acts rude with people around and, finally, also misbehaves with his boss.

Ranbir is now jobless for some months and decides to go spend some time with his parents. There is no peace here. All his life, Ranbir’s decisions had been made by his father, Javed Sheikh, because of who Ranbir’s life became what it was—mundane. Javed is upset to know about Ranbir losing his job. As is his wont, Javed starts lecturing Ranbir again leading to him walking out. Ranbir goes in search of the old man from whom he listened to stories as a child and asks him to compete his own love story which is stuck halfway. In the process, he gleans enlightenment that his story would be what he wanted it to be.

Ranbir sheds his act of being a disciplined, mid-level white-collar worker. He takes to his real self, in dressing, behavior as well as likes and dislikes. He is now custom made for Deepika.

Tamasha starts off by confusing the viewer. The film makes one think the couple has known each other for ages but are only putting on an act though, actually, this is their first meeting as Deepika has lost her bag with money and passport. Nobody seems to know English in Corsica and nobody would allow her to make a phone call either. Ranbir, the lone other Indian on the scene is there to help her. The romance then takes a backseat as the footage dwells on Ranbir’s troubled dual life and that makes for a boring viewing. Direction is below par with many contradiction and glitches. The film is overloaded with songs of which Matargashti… , Agar tum saath ho… and Andheri raat mein appeal. Dialogue is routine. Cinematography is pleasing. Editing is slack.

The film has few characters, depending mostly on Ranbir and Deepika. While Ranbir has a limited range but most footage to which he can’t do justice. Deepika is vibrant and gives a good account of herself. Sadly, the chemistry the duo shared is missing here. Javed Sheikh has about three scenes and the only time he has to perform is when he has to get up from his chair.

Tamasha is poor show.

Producer: Sajid Nadiadwala.

Director: Imtiaz Ali.

Cast: Ranbir Kapoor, Deepika, Imtiaz Sheikh. 

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