BARADWAJ RANGAN: For the love of money

Why does most of our discussion about cinema centre primarily on box-office collections, especially if a big star is involved?

As I write this, Bollywood-oriented websites are screaming that Talaash has finally entered the 100-crore club, though this figure includes revenues from overseas. (The domestic total is a little under Rs. 85 cr.) At the time of release, the story was slightly different. The website boxofficecapsule.com mourned, rather ungrammatically, “Talaash collected rather good numbers over weekend and was expected to fetch good numbers on weekdays. But film dropped with every passing day and it was apparent that this time audience at large did not like the content of Aamir Khan’s latest offering.” Then came the clincher. “Film collected further 3.50 cr nett on Thursday and film has finished week one at 67 plus cr nett. Film has to collect 30 cr plus in 2nd week in order to reach 100 cr nett mark…” And the second week’s total was a mere Rs. 15.5 crore, which means that Talaash will not join the 100-crore club when only domestic receipts are totalled.

This has been the dominant mode of discourse around the film, apart from reviews and a stray opinion piece or two expressing indignation over Aamir Khan’s apparent endorsement of superstition. On the other hand, had Talaash been a Hollywood movie, these are some of the topics that would have risen around the film’s release, in newspapers, magazines and web sites: the best supernatural-suspense films of all time; 10 best cops with moustaches; the origins of rug-pulling in the movies; how spouses in the cinema deal with loss; the literary tradition of lonesome policemen; why hookers in cinema, with the exception of Julia Roberts in Pretty Woman, just cannot catch a break; 10 reasons Talaash would have sucked had there been a male in the director’s chair; Farhan Akhtar’s evolution as a dialogue-writer; from Dil Chahta Hai to Talaash, a look at the male-centric multiplex movie; and, this being awards season, why Talaash won’t win the Oscar for Best Actor.

In short, we’d have had a range of writing around the movie, from the super-serious to the ultra-silly. And I’m not even talking about the lengthy profiles and interviews, the comment pieces and the debates that would have appeared. But here, all we seem to do is bother about the box office. That’s not wrong. You can do serious reporting using facts and figures that make up the trade aspect of a film. But when all those reports converge around a single question, whether or not Talaash will enter the 100-crore club, it’s depressing — not just because we can’t seem to think of other things to write about and around the film, but because the 100-crore mark itself is meaningless with this sort of film, with restricted appeal. That such a moody and slow-paced film made Rs. 85 crore so far is in itself a smashing success story, without speculating if Aamir is still the top Khan.

What, for instance, would Talaash have earned had Salman or Shah Rukh starred in it, both stars with a more massy appeal? Besides, a look at the Wikipedia page of Bollywood’s 100-crore grosser reveals that most of them are masala movies (or variants thereof, like the sci-fi masala Ra.One, or the masala comedy Housefull 2). Jab Tak Hai Jaan, if not quite a masala movie, is very much from a proven genre, plus it came with the star power of Shah Rukh Khan and Katrina Kaif, and the names of Yash Chopra and A.R. Rahman. The only two films that seem surprising additions to this club are 3 Idiots and Barfi!, the former a “social comedy,” pumped full with messages, and the latter a whimsical dramedy. Had Aamir made Ghajini 2 and had that film not made 100 crore, then there would be something to talk about. Why put these pressures on Talaash?

But that, I suppose, is part of the baggage of being a star — even a star director, for that matter. A lot of the number crunching around Lincoln has revolved around the fact that Steven Spielberg has, after a long time, had a $100 million hit. (His last blockbuster was the pre-sold Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull; his last non-franchise, non-blockbuster film to hit that mark was Catch Me If You Can, a whole decade ago). You cannot completely do away with these expectations. But the difference is that there have been scores of other kinds of articles written about Lincoln, ranging from The Scoop: Why Lincoln Grew a Beard to How Steven Spielberg’s Lincoln Benefited from Crony Capitalism to The Eternal Reach: How Steven Spielberg’s Evolving Ideas Continue to Ignite Cinema. And all we have about Talaash is endless handwringing about a numerical benchmark. You’re probably going to tell me that our mainstream media doesn’t have space, any longer, for serious, analytical writing about cinema, but isn’t that why blogs were invented?

http://www.thehindu.com/arts/cinema/for-the-love-of-money/article4225920.ece

Post Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.

generico de priligy cialis 20mg siparis viagra 25mg boots cialis 10 mg indonesia zoloft 50 mg reviews lisinopril hydrochlorothiazide 25 mg cipro 500mg paypal buy 4 dose zithromax glucophage generic zithromax 600mg i clomid 100mg 6days metformin hcl 250 mg prednisone 5mg fatigue buy zithromax 1000mg xenical buy online levitra 20 mg indicazioni doxycycline 100mg kittens cialis everyday generic nexium 10 mg costo generic viagra seized 200 mg generic cialis zithromax injection 500mg lexapro 20 mg snort viagra 10 mg cost cytotec 50 mg citalopram escitalopram 10 mg strattera 80 mg capsule 60 mg of lexapro levitra generic walgreens amoxil 250 mg 40 mg of lisinopril metformin 500mg sr erfahrung viagra online cialis 50mg suppliers lexapro 5 mg shaky viagra manufacturer online teva generic lexapro xenical comanda online viagra 25mg flashback viagra online 24 horas cialis 5 mg efectos lexapro generic 20mg synthroid abbott generic cialis 5 mg original cheap viagra singles nexium 10 mg prospect valtrex mail order 40 mg lisinopril dosage 5 mg lexapro anxiety 200 mg zoloft forum buy cheapest propecia lisinopril 2.5mg us cialis 50mg tablets cheap authentic cialis cialis 5 mg opiniones 25 mg zoloft depression site cheap viagra misoprostol cytotec online lisinopril 81 mg buy cheap cytotec augmentin 400mg viagra online indiano 2.5 mg of cialis generic cialis european viagra tesco online clomid 150mg progesterone walgreens generic lexapro lisinopril 40 mg lupi cialis film 20mg viagra 110 mg viagra generic viagra celebrex generic sale dosage amoxil 500 mg metformin 800mg generic viagra canada lasix 500 mg romania propranolol 40mg ansiedade zithromax buy australia propranolol nombre generico 25 mg zoloft works buying viagra pattaya 2011 legit generic viagra online levitra rx order brand zithromax celebrex generico viagra levitra online viagra generic japan clomid uk order propranolol dak 10 mg order propecia tablets augmentin 875 mg 125 mg cialis 50mg information take nexium 40 mg cheap viagra kina cytotec misoprostol online 5mg lexapro anxiety cialis tijuana 10mg doxycycline 100mg pimples propecia 1mg works lasix 40mg online zithromax 250 mg vidal prezzo viagra generico clomid tablets buy buy xenical 120 mg cialis lilly 20mg 200 mg propranolol cheapest metformin levitra 20 mg einnehmen augmentin 12h 875 mg cheap cialis china cheap viagra online xenical buy singapore hydrochlorothiazide 125 mg clomid 100mg walmart propecia cheap usa kamagra 100mg beipackzettel kamagra buy online lisinopril 40 mg prices generic viagra calgary bactrim f 400mg zoloft tic disorders qual viagra generico valtrex going generic doxycycline 100mg palu cheap 50 mg viagra lisinopril lupin 5 mg valtrex 1000mg generic lexapro coupon viagra generic chewable generic viagra 50mg clomid ile mg cialis 5 mg buying levitra generico chile garlic 1000 mg doxycycline amoxil 875 mg tablet cialis 5mg review diflucan 200 mg kapszula cheap viagra 150 mgs cialis generico roma generic lexapro mexico tabletas lexapro 10 mg augmentin 457 mg pret online glucophage about generic cialis taking 4 5 mg cialis nolvadex buy proviron doxycycline 150mg caverject 20 mg levitra 20 pret celebrex 100mg lasix 20 mg india drug lasix 40 mg norethisterone 5mg clomid cheapest brand levitra cialis cheap prices walgreens online cialis viagra freeonline opinioni bactrim 800 mg dose cialis 10mg potecy viagra 200mg cheapest buy augmentin zoloft 50 mg prospect buying zovirax online zithromax 600mg online zithromax buy generic valtrex generic problems online viagra review bayer generic levitra controindicazioni xenical 120 mg india viagra online lisinopril 20 mg safe 40mg strattera erowid 2.5mg lisinopril online viagra generico foro buy viagra danmark buy cheap prednisone cheap price nexium celebrex cheaper alternative generic lexapro celexa lexapro 600 mg viagra 100 mg dosis lisinopril 20 mg beipackzettel generic metformin hcl cytotec online kaufen generic nexium tablets cipro uti online viagra nombre generico cialis 5 mg take mexico buy viagra buy viagra dc cialis 20 mg bottle propecia online cheap metformin online prescription viagra price buy viagra online shipping generic lexapro dose 50 mg zoloft libido cialis economico online metformin denk 500 mg 120 mg of prednisone priligy order online cialis 20 mg confezione pastillas metformin 500 mg lexapro generic side kamagra 100mg sildenafil levitra 20 mg generico zoloft dissociative disorder cheap viagra pharmacy buying cialis sydney buy cipro drug zoloft 0.25 mg lisinopril 20mg cialis 5 mg bph harga nexium 40mg online toronto cialis order levitra online doxycycline hyclate 100mg 500 trouver cialis 5mg diflucan kapsule 150mg cialis generico vipro cialis onlinefree cipro 500 mg sistit levitra 20 mg duration triamterene hydrochlorothiazide 50 25 mg buy cialis london lasix online buy reliable propecia online viagra kauf online propecia online forum farmaci generici levitra xenical 20mg amoxil susp 500 mg online viagra shops cialis 5mgm prices levitra 10mg erfahrungsberichte lexapro 10 mg afbouwen generico viagra yahoo price viagra 20mg kamagra 100 mg billig cheapest valtrex 500mg cialis 10 mg etkisi nexium in generic bestellen viagra online buy zithromax 1200 uso cialis 10 mg tablett viagra 100mg diflucan generic version buy viagra australia cipro 1a 500 mg buy viagra montreal nexium alternatives cheaper viagra price 100mg 600 mg diflucan prednisone 20mg. mayo viagra buyers india augmentin 500mg dosage zoloft 50 mg price buy nolvadex xt cialis 10mg generic metformin 500 mg tb24 online doctor xenical cheap cialis jelly 20 mg propranolol anxiety valtrex generic mylan cialis 2.5mg prices clomid 100 mg daily generic viagra phillipines mail order zoloft cialis 40mg cipla strattera 120 mg daily cialis 5mg two diflucan pill 100mg hydrochlorothiazide 25 mg canada erythromycin 250 mg dosing generic cipla viagra propranolol 10 mg indicaciones prednisone 50 mg po cialis generic cheapest viagra malaysia buy comprare cialis 20 mg buy generic glucophage lisinopril 2.5 mg tablets diflucan 150 mg kapsula buy cytotec misoprostol viagra generico germania cialis 2.5 mg canada cheapest cialis melbourne metformin dura 500 mg buying azithromycin zithromax 5 levitra 20 mg tablet viagra generico funciona nexium 20mg rezeptfrei prices online cialis 1500 mg wellbutrin toko viagra online nexium generics viagra online istanbul 25mg viagra pills lisinopril secubar 20 mg teva wellbutrin generic capsulas celebrex 200 mg order viagra mail generic of xenical lisinopril 5 mg dosage cheap wellbutrin online getting nexium cheap viagra online doctissimo nexium 40 mg kaina cost 40 mg nexium lexapro prescription online viagra buy alternative misoprostol cytotec buy buy generic clomid orlistat xenical 120 mg cytotec tab 200 mg erythromycin 500mg price buspar 600 mg overdose buy .99 generic viagra generic levitra good lisinopril smg prednisone ordering online metformin 500 mg bioequivalence buy cipro india zovirax 400 mg generic pfizer zoloft 50mg hydrochlorothiazide 12.5 mg tb dosierung viagra 50 mg buy zovirax 200 mg cialis free online citalopram lexapro mg levitra 20mg 2 tablets diflucan 150 mg dosierung buy 20 mg lexapro kegunaan nexium 40 mg generic line viagra zithromax cheap net buy propecia without cialis rezeptfrei 20mg genuine generic viagra medco order cialis cialis 20mg cpr4 green cialis 20mg bula cialis 5 mg viagra 50 100 mg liquid viagra online cipro 500 mg po glucophage xr 750mg temoignage cialis 20mg augmentin 750mg buy original cialis lasix 12.5 mg dogs propecia online vendita buy lasix aventis clomid buy visa generic levitra article viagra cheap prices generic 10mg cialis augmentin 4000 mg day cialis 36 hr mg augmentin 642.9 mg nexium 40 mg prix doxycycline 200mg bid lisinopril hctz 25 mg 20 mg cialis safe generic cialis gelly sildenafil 100 mg viagra generic cialis ed levitra 20 mgs viagra online canadiain cialis 20 mg ebay cutting cialis 20 mg metformin buying cialis online italy viagra 100 mg etkileri augmentin syrup 457mg doxycycline online 40mg lexapro 20 mg depression propecia generic results cheapest viagra australia cialis, 20 mg, 120 prednisone 5mg liquid kamagra 200 mg dose cialis online lily viagra 25mg prix valtrex generic effectiveness propranolol hcl 10mg propecia generic uk levitra viagra online orodispersible levitra buy order augmentin online buy doxycycline inj. viagra alternative online 400mg viagra overdose prednisone 7.5 mg daily generic diflucan walgreens periactin 8mg generic strattera online wellbutrin 75 mg dose viagra generico 24 ore wellbutrin 600 mg day buying nolvadex cc viagra 100mg pakistan 125mg of viagra cialis 20 mg yorum cialis generico dosis viagra online dublin synthroid cheap price cialis online fiable strattera dosage 60 mg cipro antibiotic 500 mg generic propecia shedding generique levitra 20mg nexium 40mg pdf 5 mg of cialis zoloft 25 mg posologie generic zoloft forum buying nolvadex pct viagra generic brazil viagra online opiniones harga doxycycline 100mg order cytotec online thuoc propranolol 10mg clomid buy generic zithromax 250mg svenska cialis mg c80 generic viagra busts doxycycline 500 mg tablet generic viagra patent cialis usp 25 mg par generic wellbutrin order generic wellbutrin cialis 5mg generic buy viagra scarborough augmentin pret 500 mg order viagra usa prednisone 50 mg alcohol generico de cipro cheap zithromax pills prednisone 20 mg color 800 mg viagra gold levitra generics24 generic cialis softtabs viagra generic rx 40 mg lasix iv online viagra liquid strattera 60 mg bestellen prednisone 10mg canada ic propranolol 60 mg augmentin 500 mg dawkowanie buy levitra 10 pills bactrim 80 400 mg tablets 450 mg wellbutrin xl doxycycline 500mg paypal diflucan generic walgreens cialis buy johannesburg cialis 5mg 14 szt 1000 mg metformin cheap viagra pompharmacy cipla cialis 40mg propranolol non generic prednisone 10mg pills buy nolvadex sustanon viagra 100mg australia prednisone 14 yo 75mg cialis 10mg bula generic viagra norge generic 50mg cialis lisinopril 10 mg bijwerkingen buy perfo viagra propecia tablets 0.2mg cheapest levitra vardenafil buy viagra 1 cialis 2,5mg bestellen buying cialis safely cialis generico timo kamagra online safe clomid tem generico zovirax tabletas 400mg weaning 20 mg prednisone cerco viagra generico buy cialis near 32901 cialis 20 mg description cheap kamagra eu viagra online italia zoloft online brand cheap viagra generic lexapro forum zoloft over 200 mg cipro generic dosage kamagra one 100mg hydrochlorothiazide tab 25 mg tetracycline 250 mg dosage 6generic propecia alternative doxycycline dci 100 mg reichen 50 mg viagra clomid generic 50mg doxycycline hyclate 75mg zoloft drowsiness 25mg cialis generic 40 mg. cipro 30mg cialis 5mg prostatectomie