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Thursday, March 3, 2011

Adventures in Bollywood

What I'm watching right this very minute:

(via Wikipedia)

Chandni Chowk to China


(Hindi: चाँदनी चौक टू चाईना, Chinese: 從印度到中國/从印度到中国) is a Hindi film which released on 16 January 2009. It is directed by Nikhil Advani and stars Akshay Kumar and Deepika Padukone in the lead roles, with Hindi cinema veteran Mithun Chakraborty and Hong Kong action cinema veteran Gordon Liu among the co-stars. In addition to being shot in China, many parts of the film were shot in Bangkok, Thailand,[3][4] although some of the China scenes were shot in sets in the Shanghai Film Studio.[4]
Distributed in the U.S. and co-produced by Warner Bros., it is the third Bollywood movie made and distributed in partnership with a major Hollywood studio, following Sony's Saawariya (2007) and Walt Disney Pictures' animated feature Roadside Romeo (2008).[5] It is Warner Bros. Pictures' first Hindi film.[4]



Plot

Sidhu (Akshay Kumar) is a lowly vegetable cutter at a roadside food stall in the Chandni Chowk section of Delhi. He longs to escape his dreary existence and looks for shortcuts with astrologers, tarot card readers, and fake fakirs, refusing to believe in himself despite his foster father Dada's (Mithun Chakraborty) best efforts. When two strangers from China claim him as a reincarnation of a war hero in the past and take him to China, Sidhu, thanks to devious translations by his con-man buddy Chopstick (Ranvir Shorey), believes he will be taken to an exotic land and feted as a hero. In actuality, the Chinese men want him to rid their Chinese village of the vicious smuggler Hojo (Gordon Liu).
Sidhu blissfully sets forth to China with Chopstick. Along the way he meets Sakhi (Deepika Padukone), the Indian-Chinese spokesmodel known as Ms. Tele Shoppers Media, or Ms. TSM, who is travelling to the land of her birth and of her presumed-dead [who is still alive] father and her twin sister, Suzy. Suzy, also known as the femme fatale Meow Meow, works for Hojo, not knowing Hojo tried to kill her father. Sidhu, through a series of lucky coincidences, initially manages to sidestep being beaten brutally up by Hojo, but Hojo eventually catches up with him and exposes him as the buffoon he really is. Hojo kills Dada, and a disgraced Sidhu, left for dead himself, vows revenge. He encounters an amnesiac vagrant who turns out to be former Police Chief Chiang (Roger Yuan), the father of Sakhi and Suzy. Chiang recovers his memory, with his Kung Fu skills still intact. Sidhu wishes to learn cosmo Kung Fu. Chiang takes Sidhu on as his apprentice, and after months of training, Sidhu decides to kill Hojo.
Hojo tells a lie to Meow Meow that Chiang killed her father. When Hojo meets up with Sidhu, Meow Meow hugs Chiang and stabs him in the back with a knife. Sidhu attacks Meow Meow, but Sakhi stops him. Meow Meow was shocked and figured out that Hojo lied to her. Meow Meow betrays Hojo and helps her father. They watch Sidhu battle Hojo. When Sidhu almost loses, his dada appears and tells him not to worship a potato and Chiang tells him to use the skill that is special to him. His specialty was chopping vegetables and cooking which helped him beat Hojo brutally in the end. In the end, Sidhu gains Sakhi's love.



The songs and costumes are beautiful, but with a 2hr 30min run-time, I have to wonder if I'm going to make it.

What profound and insightful message is being conveyed...that it must take over two hours? I mean, "Adventures in Babysitting," one of Elizabeth Shue's (alright, let's face her only) finest films chronicles five people's crazy night in the big city in under two hours. There's car chases, a Thor character, a blues bar, a stolen car ring, a black dude, a fancy yuppie party, a frat party, a fancy french restaurant, a break-up, a make-up, and a lip-synching musical interlude...in under two hours.

"Adventures in Babysitting," may be the greatest movie of all time.


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