If you ever were under the impression that Western values were eroding our Bharatiya sanskriti, fear not. Bas Itna Sa Khwaab Hai proves that it is doing remarkably well.
Sadly, though, all Bas Itna Sa Khwaab Hai has going for it is its plot. Hackneyed though it may seem, it does ask the right questions that we, the supposed Gen-X Indians are faced with, compelling us to perhaps examine our existence a little more closely.
But an admirable plot is only a job half done; the other half being weaving that story into something that would vaguely classify itself as meaningful cinema.
Rookie director Goldie Behl, however, chooses to ignore the latter chapter in his Dummies' Guide to directing a film. For what could have been a decent flick otherwise crumbles before your very eyes.
Suraj Shrivastav (Abhishek Bachchan) is the ideal Indian son -- caring, respectful, virtuous. But, he “wants” more and is more determined than a mountain goat to make it to the top.
So he leaves beautiful Benares to study in beastly Bombay, hoping to be one day as important as his idol, India’s leading media tycoon Naved Ali (Jackie Shroff).
In the city of dreams, at lowly St Andrew’s College, Suraj (it was spelt during the course of the film once as Suraj and, at another time, Sooraj), meets the woman of his dreams Pooja (Rani Muhkerji).
Chori chori chupke chupke, if you will have it, Cupid creeps up on them. And soon enough, the two are in love.
Naved Ali, as chance would have it, is one of the more distinguished alumni that St Andrew’s has produced. And he returns to his alma mater to institute a scholarship to be awarded to the best all-rounder, which Suraj is most keen on winning.
But his fate depends on the outcome of a 100-metre race to be held on the annual sports day. Suraj can’t make it to the starting line as he’s busy fighting off hooligans to protect the life of a policeman and so must forgo the coveted prize.
Ali is aware of the fact that Suraj will do anything to get what he wants. And he offers Suraj all he’s ever wanted -- a penthouse appartment, a fancy car, a high profile portfolio, power and fame.
Naïve as he is, Suraj bites the bait. And before he knows it, he’s been reeled in hook, line and sinker. He realises his folly, though, and with Providence on his side, makes up for his misdeeds, confirming once again that hamara value system is still very much alive and kicking.
Abhishek, though born with a silver spoon in his mouth, was definitely born with two left legs. I don't think his dancing was supposed to make me laugh -- I’m sorry I couldn’t help myself.
But let’s not single him out -- the choreography left a lot to be desired.
So did the loud background score, the garish costumes and the gaudy set décor. For his sake I hope Shararat, will show 'em what Abhishek is made of.
Sushmita Sen (as Ali's righthand woman), and Jackie have well-characterised bits, which they carry off satisfactorily. Sush can add onscreen oomph like nobody but Marilyn Monroe could!
Rani, with kilos shed, looks divine. I wish I could use similar adjectives to describe her acting prowess.
The supporting cast with Smita Jayakar, Gulshan Grover, Raman Lamba, Suchitra Pillai, and some guy who plays Goan-pao Phillip, are surprisingly good.
Nevertheless, although BISKH aims at getting somewhere, it misses.
Too harsh, he’s being too harsh, you might say.
But I did walk into that theatre with a lot of expectations. Perhaps there’s where I went wrong. I expected too much. I apologise.
Dreaming big with Sush and Abhishek!
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