Movie review : The Dirty Picture

After many glamorous promotions, a few controversies and a lengthy wait, Dirty Picture has finally hit all the leading theatres across the country.

My friends and I planned a long time back to go and watch the movie as soon as the examination got over,  but the daily news updates regarding the movie, the promos, the dashing Vidya Balan in her all new Avatar , the gossips about the film being based on the life of yesteryear South Indian sex bomb Silk Smitha and the various controversies surrounding the film made the film all the more irresistible and finally that day came when as per our plan, all of us went to watch the much awaited movie of the year  – The Dirty Picture .

Despite constant refusals by the film producer, Ms. Ekta Kapoor regarding the film being based on the rise and fall from stardom of the South Indian actress Silk Smitha, I would say the film at large seemed a biography of her life. Released worldwide on December 2 ,2011 ,which incidentally was Silk Smitha’s birth anniversary , in three languages Hindi, Tamil and Telugu with Vidya Balan, Emraan Haasmi, Naseerudin Shah and Tushar Kapoor in lead roles the film grossed a total of about INR50 crore  in India in addition to the multi billion dollars it gained overseas In the first week of its release. It is declared a super hit by Box Office India and also a  women-oriented film to have the biggest opening ever  in the history of Indian Cinema.

Well there are many factors in my opinion, which contributed to the overall success of the film besides the fantastic storyline, which is based on the life and struggle of a young  girl, Reshma, characterized by Vidya Balan, who belongs to humble background but dreams big in life and runs to Chennai, then called Madras to realize her dreams of becoming an actress. She is very much aware of her booming sensuality and is ready to do anything to accomplish success. Stars favour her to the extent that from a mere back-up dancer she moves up to the rank of a hot sizzling lead actress in the 80’s, popularly called by her screen name Silk and well known for flaunting her voluptuous figure with lot of male fans drooling over her.

Such was her charm that theatres used to fill up only to watch her and empty as soon as her sequence used to finish, hardly bothered about the heroic deeds of the male-leads. Everything that had the name of Silk on it got sold like anything in a time when a female actress getting precedence over male leads was considered next to impossible. Her films were deemed vulgur , crass and cheap but her name shines paying no attention to the naysayers whatsoever.

The main players in Silk’s life were a film director, Abraham played by Emraan Haasmi who despises her, a veteran but chauvinistic superstar Suryakant who craves her, played remarkably well by Naseerudin Shah  and his rather not so famous younger brother Ramakant who likes her played ably by Tushar Kapoor. How these characters affect and channelize the flow of her life is the essence of the whole story.

Well as I mentioned before there were many factors contributing to the success of the film besides the storyline and as the film says it “It is entertainment”, which was provided by the superb and courageous performance of the lead actress Vidya Balan. This film has portrayed Vidya Balan in a very different light, quite contrary to the characters that she has played till date and I must say that the lady deserves all the appreciation. She managed the role brilliantly. From a typical traditional Indian women of Parineeta, to a young bubbly radio jockey of Munnabhai MBBS, a responsible mother of a mentally and physically retarded child in Paa, a scheming clever and cunning woman who plays shrewdly with two men simultaneously in Ishqiya to where she reached today- a role of a sex bomb in The dirty picture, Vidya Balan has completed a full circle. In my opinion, no other heroine in the Indian film industry could have portrayed the role better than Vidya Balan. She was the only one made for the role and she delivered it quite well with all the grace that was needed mixing it up with spice, a few steamy hot and bold scenes here and there and at times showcasing  the right set of sentiments and emotions.

No need to mention about the veteran actor Naseerudin Shah. He is as good as the character he plays – Suryakanth. He knows what is required out of him and he delivers it perfectly. For a change Emraan Haasmi’s usual roles that he had played till date of a serial kisser and a passionate lover were taken away from him by  Vidya Balan and Balan hogs all the limelight. But Haasmi portrays his newly defined role quite well. Tushar Kapoor sketches the character of Ramakanth in a credible manner as well.

Right from the song sequences, to the sets, sound, cinematography, costumes, language, locations, music and the lyrics  in the film are reminiscent of the era of 80’s . A special mention to the song- Ooh Lala.

The second half of the film was a bit slow paced, unlike the first half, which was a thrilling ride. The dance sequence where the young girl Shakeela interacts face to face with Vidya could have been casted in a better manner. The later half depicts Silk’s career downfall. Silk could not face the reality when she is cruelly ousted from the business by the very loyal audience that loved her, shaped her and applauded her. She tries to escape the reality of her doomed career with alcohol and arrogance, which only pace up her downfall even further.

At the end you actually fall in love with the character of Silk who from outside seems very courageous least bothered about what the world thinks about her but from inside she is discouragingly weak, needs someone who actually understands her and genuinely cares about her. Her destiny, which takes her to a real high from a filthy low only to get her back to a place, which is even worse than what it was before.

To wrap up, everything from direction to screenplay was in tune with the film sequence. I would totally disagree to the fact raised by many that sex is the prime ingredient, which helped in selling the movie. Infact its Vidya Balan who sells the picture!

Rating 4.5/5

Padmavathy Dhillon