If one of the functions of cinema is to give the viewer food for thought, then it has to be said London Dreams is one hell of a thought-provoking film. It makes you think and wonder; in fact, it makes you wonder a lot.
You wonder whose idea it was to murder Milos Forman’s classic Amadeus (1984) so brutally in the first place and why. Especially since Bollywood had already done it before, and well enough too, with Shakalaka Boom Boom (2007).
You are puzzled as to the central casting of a couple of men in their 40s playing 20 somethings and doing idiotic things on screen. The scenes of Salman Khan in the aircraft and at Heathrow Airport just leave you speechless.
You wonder if you’ve seen such a criminal waste of time, effort and so much money on something so mediocre recently. Actually yes, Kambakkth Ishq?
You are astonished at the total lack of knowledge of the Punjabi underground musical scenario in UK. In fact, everything to do with music, the backbone of the story, is dealt with ever so weakly.
You rack your memory to see if you’ve seen a second half of a Hindi film derail so badly.
You are confused whether you are watching a film of the 1970s or a contemporary one when you see sequences like the young Ajay Devgnn being able to afford going to music school in UK by playing his flute on the streets of London.
You wonder if any time was spent on the story, screenplay or dialogue or was it put together as rapidly as the formation and rise of the London Dreams band?
You seriously question the fact how not having sex and whipping oneself to cleanse oneself of one’s (dirty) thoughts and deeds is a sign of being totally focused on your dream.
You are gobsmacked trying to figure out how they filled Salman Khan’s body with various drugs (including marijuana!) to make him an addict of the highest order who has to go for rehab in so short a time.
You are dumb-struck as to how a performer can give a speech like the inane one that Devgn gives at Wembly in front of 90,000 people.
You are unable to comprehend how amateurish the Ajay Devgn character is in his means and methods of getting Salman Khan out of his way.
You wonder why Ajay Devgn’s voiceovers tell you nothing more than what you’ve already seen and have no additional insight into his mind whatsoever.
You are astounded that if Asin has come to Bollywood to be wasted in films like this, then isn’t she better off ruling it in Kollywood where she came from?
You think in a musical film like this and with Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy at the helm, the music would be far, far better. Just putting a Punjabi beat to words doesn’t make for a hit song.
You wonder why Sejal Shah strives so hard to give the film a polish it didn’t deserve especially in some of the concert sequences.
And finally, you are surprised how you managed to sit through the entire film in the first place and cannot help but wonder just how much lower can Hindi cinema stoop. It’s scary!
Hindi, Drama, Color