Sunday, February 7, 2010

Tale of 2 recent Hindi movies featuring geeks: "3 idiots" & "Pyaar impossible!"

Two most recent movies I saw both feature geeks in prominent roles . But what a contrast!

"3 idiots" (@imdb) was a delight, in spite of "minor" flaws like director's fetish with toilet scenes, actors who're too old to be convincing undergraduate students, & a tendency to preach. Hero is an uber-cool tech student - a sort of John Galt (but without Galt's social agenda or anger at society). He can cook up all sort of gadgets at a moment's notice! Presentation felt quite a bit like "Munnabhai, MBBS" (@imdb) - just move the locale from a medical college to tech college, & hero from a goon in love to a real geek.

"Pyaar impossible!" (@imdb) was a complete bore, in spite of Priyanka Chopra. Hero is a very shy geek who's written (alone!) a PC operating system that can run software written for any popular operating system like Windows, Mac, even cell phones! Never mind the technical or patent issues. A crook posing as investor then steals his product - only installer, no sources - & sells it to a Singapore based company; never mind how he stole it (& at a moment's notice) from hero's notebook that probably didn't have installer, & how he managed to convince someone to sell it without access to source (they obviously didn't want any custom tweaks)! Then the crook goes after hero's girl. Of course, hero trumps eventually, by proving his ownership of product in an utterly unconvincing presentation. But these are side tracks - hero spends most of his time playing servant cum babysitter in his love's home, because he doesn't have guts to really talk to her.

Something that puzzles me: the recent trend in giving English names to Hindi movies, even the ones that have very Indian settings, like "3 idiots". These names cannot be helping locally. Do they make the movie easier to sell overseas?

Related: Hindi fiction.