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Wake Up Sid: Serene Serendipity Tuesday, 6 October, 2009

Posted by ~uh~™ in Bollywood.
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

I know, I have developed a reputation of writing bad movie reviews. The interpretation can either mean reviews of bad movies or bad reviews of movies; depending on how much disgusted you are with my reviews.

The point is that, I find it much easier to write on bad Bollywood movies. I normally don’t write on movies I like. There are two prime reasons for it.

One- the movies I like are quite obscure, mostly non-bollywood, sometimes even non-hollywood, rare and unheard of [check this article], which restricts my readers putting any useful comment. I find, getting a paltry response and not adding any value (other than notifying handful cinephiles about the existence of such movies) is not enough motivation for me to write about them. However, I have the intention of writing about them in future.

Two- the other type of movies I like are already famous and have obtained a cult following. The reputation of those movies won’t change irrespective whether I write about them or not. Such movies are too popular and have been discussed to death in popular forums. Hence there’s little left to be discussed afresh. So there’s not enough motivation to write on them either.

That leaves me with a very rare occurrence- a new Bollywood movie which is also a Directoral debut, that I can’t resist writing about. Examples- Khosla Ka Ghosla (Dibakar Bannejee),Manorama 6 ft Under (Navdeep Singh), Taare Zameen Par (Aamir Khan), Barah Aana (Raja Menon), 99 (Krishna D K). I beleive a good debut deserves a good review.

Ranbir & Konkona- Serendipity and the City

Ranbir & Konkona- Serendipity and the City

I liked Wake Up Sid, the debut film of Director Ayan Mukherjee [writer and asst director of Swadesh and KANK]. Honestly, I kept my fingers crossed knowing it’s the first bonding between K-Jo and Yashraj, both I hate to the core for their overdose of romance, melodrama and uncommon nonsense.

The basic story of Wake Up Sid is an intelligent cocktail of the ingredients taken from the following successful movies, especially the ones by Farhan Akhtar

1. Jane Tu Ya Jane Na – Today’s youth culture, electronic lifestyle, hedonism and confusion between love and friendship.

2. Dil Chahta Hai– A today’s perspective of urbane and jovial youth, living for the present, escaping from the future

3. Lakshya– Dilemma of youth towards the right choice of career, life, ambition and it’s repercussions

4. Luck by Chance– Tale of struggle and aspiration of a newcomer in Mumbai.

5. Life in a Metro– Relationship and stress in a big city life.

Screen bonding- Truth and Togetherness

Screen bonding- Truth and Togetherness

As it should be well understood, nothing in this script is ‘new’ at all- a young boy, college friends, parties, rich self-made dad, a sweet mom semi-blind with affection, hedonistic lifestyle, carefree friendship, defocused future and love disguised as friendship. On the other part we have a new girl in town, confident and aspiring, looking for independence and a future in the big city. They meet, they live together and the rest is formula. Like most rom-coms, the script takes some liberty of over-romanticizing of the situation.

Yet, the movie is a superior from the bollywood bandwagon in lot of aspects. Unlike other bollywood potboilers, it’s not an over the top, melodramatic family drama soaked in bucketful of emotion and impossibilities. Rather it’s a sharp, soft, suave, elegant, practical, colorful, joyous presentation of humdrum life sequences which involves the audience with its not so unexpected twirls. It’s simple, feel good entertainment.

For a change, I would keep this one short and list out my reasons for liking the movie-

Exceptional direction by Ayan Mukherjee with a difficult combination of fresh faces and veteran actors like Anupam Kher and Supriya Pathak. Like most Bollywood movies, there’s a radical and distinct change in ambiance in first and second half in terms of pace and progress, which would have different appeal to different viewers depending on which generation s/he belongs to.

Ranbir Kapoor as Sid- natural son of a rich

Ranbir Kapoor as Sid- natural son of a rich

Ranbir Kapoor is outstanding in his roles, with his natural and high coolness quotient, expressive eyes and just the perfect body language. Konkona heavily reminded me of her role in Luck by Chance and Life in Metro, especially for the conversations on overhead tank scenes of the latter. She is brilliantly ordinary and poignant. I think, this would be one of her best role in commercial Hindi film and one of the best on screen chemistry after Irrfan Khan in Life in a Metro. Anupam Kher’s rock-steady performance as affluent but unconventionally responsible dad, complements Supriya Pathak’s projection as a lovable mom, trying to bond the pieces of mother–son relationship with her broken English. Rahul Khanna did much better than Bobby Deol (Dostana) and himself (Love Aaj Kaal) in similar roles. In other short roles Namit Das (Rishi) and Shikha Talsania (as Laxmi, is she daughter of Tiku Talsania btw ?) did wonderfully well, the sparkle in Namit’s eyes and friendship in Shikha’s heart is too bright to be missed. Kashmira Shaw does her bit believably. However, the eye candy girl Tanya’s (Kainaz Motiwala- weirdly fair and fresh) story ended abruptly. The Amit guy (Munir Kabani- facebook profile) of the Mumbai beat magazine was prominent with his intellectual-photographer get-up ( something like Prateek Babbar in Jaane Tu, who was also named Amit)

Konkona- a dash of fresh Bong sens

Konkona- a dash of fresh Bong sens

Shankar- Ehsan- Loy’s music with Javed Akhtar‘s lyric is trendy, catchy and groovy. The title track is a potential chartbuster, but I liked the softer ‘Jaisa hai koi Iktara Iktara’ composed by Amit Trivedi ( Aamir, Dev D) sung by Kavita Seth/ Amitabh Bhattacharyya. The song and visual combo of “Life is Crazy” is probably the most conventional one, yet enjoyable.

The details in the movie is well thought out, the continuity objects are used very well, like the red Lamy used by Konkona or the DSLR of Ranbir. The production quality, camerawork, locations and overall theme is artistically vibrant, urban and contemporary. The set design of the Mumbai Beat magazine office resembled more like a Artist’s studio! Some part of the movie reminds us about the fading romanticism of Bombay (Mumbai, for some sick touchy retard whose a*shole is bigger than his brains) which most of us have lost, in the run. It talks about loving it’s people to love a city.

The movie talks about one’s choice of passion over convention as career, in Sid’s case – Photography. I could connect with him when he realizes that he inherited his flair for photography from his dad, and gives his first pay check to him. That was one of the most emotional yet life like moment of the movie.

This movie would definitely connect strongly to the generation of the achieved Ram Mehras and the generation of the aimless Sids, yet for us who belong somewhere in between, who has lost something to gain something,  can pause to say ‘been there, done that’, before stepping into bigger responsibilities of life.

Overall, a clean cinema with abundant light humour, nominal drama about subtle sweet truths of life packed in a superior production design- a perfect treat for the family!

The Wake Up Team

The Wake Up Team



1. Ava - Tuesday, 6 October, 2009

Yeah I liked it too. A little predictable and cheesy at times, but still, a huge lot of fun.
~uh~™: Yeah, there was absolutely nothing new, but the presentation and performers made it a treat to watch !

2. Magik - Wednesday, 7 October, 2009

“son of a rich”

whammy bro! loved the post!!!
~uh~™: You never miss the bull’s eye 😉

3. Rofl Indian - Wednesday, 7 October, 2009

I am eagerly looking forward to seeing WUS, probably this weekend. I hope the movie stays on in multiplexes until that long.
~uh~™ : I guess it would, it’s doing well commercially. I also wanted to watch Wanted & Do Knot Disturb, but too many movies and no time to see 😦
Did i mention Inglorious Basterds ? 😦 😦

4. bittercharm - Wednesday, 7 October, 2009

as usual a very good review… not just from information prospective but as a piece of literature as well.. i like the word choice and content… the best thing about your work is that you make us see the point you making before you get to it. Although this line, though true, was a bit harsh.. (Mumbai, for some sick touchy retard whose a*shole is bigger than his brains) don’t you think so….
~uh~™ : Thanks for the sweet words, as always.
Regarding the sentence, I think I am being very polite- if I was given a free hand, i would have love to throw the retard to hungry pigs.

5. Abha - Wednesday, 7 October, 2009


beautiful review! and am sure gonna catch it real soon! 🙂

as for bittercharm – this is the exact sentiment for lot of people who have lived and loved the city. its hardly harsh or excessive! i would have loved to use stronger words! 🙂

~uh~™ : Thanks Abha, I will be dissappointed if you don’t like it 🙂
There’s a protest March on 10th Oct against victimizing creative freedom for grimy pre-poll political agenda.

6. Ms Taggart - Thursday, 8 October, 2009

Wish I could write a review as detailed as this… well, I was blinded by my love for Munir Kabani.. (Thanks for the FB profile, btw.. I am going to stalk him now!)

I liked this review for its detailed approach .. good one. And I am with your on each of the words written.
I however felt this was more like Lakshya, because of the main protagonist’s confusion on what to do in life, and his relationship with his parents. All said, this script however old has been handled in a different way.
I also felt that the chemistry is not as good between Konkana and Ranbir. She clearly looks and feels older to him, and so they dont look like the lovey dovey pair. She feels like a older sister to him.
I also felt that the movie got a bit predictable at the end. I’d have preferred if they let them both be friends and let her go for Rahul Khanna..

Also, Ranbir’s DSLR – I am not familiar with Nikon’s DSLR models, but thought that its a semi-DSLR, more because he would not change his lens for any of the shots.. all the sea shots, street ones, Konkana’s were shot with the same lens.. atleast what is attached to the camera.. 🙂
~uh~™ : Thanks for the reading the review with care and the detailed analytical comment.
I disagree on the chemistry part though.
The fact that the pair looks imbalanced was the very reason for my liking them. It’s practical and non-filmy and shows that two people can still fall in love, even they look ‘mismatched’ with an age difference.
That’s how it happens in real life.
Konkona had a dominating sisterly character. Don’t you think in every relationship one person dominates the other, from time to time and in different situations ? Else every pair would have been ‘Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi’….lol

DSLR- If he had a 35-70 kinda zoom lens there’s little need to change the lens for taking regular pictures, it’s the aperture and shutter speed that need to be adjusted. You need macro/ telephoto for taking specialized pics for objects too close or too far respectively. The model looked like a D-90 but am not sure.

I hope Munir would thank me for my help :p

Ms Taggart - Saturday, 10 October, 2009

For the chemistry part, I say I agree with what you said. I also liked the fact that they showed that different people can fall in love. I also liked the angle of the older woman-younger man relationship. But I still didnt feel sizzling chemistry there, but then again, I am sure that was not the idea behind their relationship.

As for the lens, I work with a semi-DSLR dabbling with the bokey shots and aperture modes and only saw an amateur photographer change his lens. 🙂
~uh~™ : See, you have got the gist nicely 🙂

7. Whatsinaname - Thursday, 8 October, 2009

cool review! That last snap is very nice. The whole team seems to be in fun mood.
You seem to be in awe totally. a lot many are. Good to know Ranbir can act. I feel he suits these kind of roles of a modern spoilt youth. Konkona should maybe try for different roles now or else she will get typecast like Rahul Khanna. Anyway, a different kind of movie is always welcome.
Good review from you and I do feel I like your bashing-up reviews 😉 Maybe I am sadistic 😦
~uh~™ : Each and every participants fun while doing the movie is visible in the movie, or at least it appeared thus to me. The team was definitely wonderful and had a gala time !
I am in awe would be a overstatement, but happy, yes ! Especially after buffalo shit like DBH.

Konkona is not exactly a conventional bollywood heroine. She comes with a lineage of meaningful cinema.
She has done different roles in unpopular projects/ bengali films which are great in my view. Have you seen her debut Ek Je Aachhe Kanya ? Have you seen Amu (Hindi film) ? I am sure you haven’t. Have you seen 15 Park Avenue (Bengali) ? Mixed Doubles ? Dil Kabaddi ? The problem is we audience try to typecast artists without seeing all the works of them.
I loved her mother and I love her too !
If you are sadistic, then I am sick or what ?

8. Ms Taggart - Thursday, 8 October, 2009

And oh yes.. I am no Mumbaikar, but I wish it stayed Bombay. And I wish it was Calcutta and Bangalore.
The recent in the name changing business is the change of the name of a district in AP – Cuddapah after the late CM – YSR. I think its preposterous, and is being done to please a certain set of people.. the next in line would be re-naming states and languages may be.. sigh!!!
~uh~™ : Changing name is fine with me. What’s not is humiliating others through an assumed position of moral judge. I feel it’s is unconstitutional, foolish and vindictive. They are no less than internal terrorists.

Ms Taggart - Saturday, 10 October, 2009

Agree. I heard KJ had to apologize for using the word Bombay in the movie! How weird!!!

9. naren - Thursday, 8 October, 2009

Loved the review. I’m going to HAVE to watch the movie anyway (force majuere – the missus is dragging me)
~uh~™ : Hope you have a good time. Btw, do you stay @ Malad ?

10. doctoratlarge - Saturday, 10 October, 2009

Very good review indeed. Though I must say that the movie seems to be another of the ‘look good, feel good, everything is well with the world and always will be and love conquers all’ ilk. These movies are good time-passers, but one does not take anything out of them. That, however, does not detract in any way from your well written review.
(I’m gonna have to watch the movie anyway for the same reason as naren above).
~uh~™ : True, but it’s a feel good movie, hope you’ll like it too !

11. Lynn - Sunday, 11 October, 2009

awe…i want to read your blog but the posts are so long…you know i have the attention span of a 2 yr old- look! a butterfly!!!
~uh~™ : 🙂

12. alok - Thursday, 15 October, 2009

kyaa baat hai dada ke theater mein next change nahi aya ? do week se ek hi picture lagee hai…….bhayee humne tikas liyaa friday ke naye show ka change karo abb 😛
~uh~™ : Problem is the net access, too much restriction everywhere 😦
I think i’ll join the ‘Dead Blogger’s Society’ soon.

13. doctoratlarge - Monday, 19 October, 2009

To what lands of fancy has the elephant flown away? Eagerly awaiting your return.
~uh~™ : Sad state of affair, as I said to alok- count me as a Dead Blogger….

14. alok - Tuesday, 20 October, 2009

meraa udtaa haathi aayega….meraa udtaa haathee waapus aayega ….rakhee/ karan arjun style hope 😀

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20. pooja rai - Thursday, 20 August, 2015

Such movies are too popular and have been discussed to death in popular forums. Hence there’s little left to be discussed afresh. So there’s not enough motivation to write on them either.

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