‘Jannat’ an interesting mix of love, cricket, crime (Film Review)

May 17th, 2008 - 4:51 pm ICT by admin  

By Subhash K. Jha
Film: “Jannat”; Cast: Emran Hashmi, Sonal Chauhan, Samir Kochar, Javed Shaikh, Vishal Malhotra; Director: Kunal Deshmukh; Ratings: *** More, more, more…The motto of motorised materialism seems to have overtaken contemporary life. Everyone wants the good things in life in the shortest time possible. The acquisitive spirit has seldom been defined with such economy of storytelling as in “Jannat”.

Not surprisingly, a lot of Mahesh Bhatt’s latest exposition on the excesses of materialism is shot in shopping malls, expensive restaurants and posh stadiums where money flows like unadulterated honey. And when our hero sees the love of his life staring at a diamond ring he walks into the showroom and breaks the display window.

Get what you want by force and forget those homilies that papa preached at the dinner table about the virtues of honesty. “Honest money means hard work and little reward,” says a wry character in “Jannat”. He’s obviously not read Ayn Rand.

Sanjay Masoom’s scathing dialogues scamper across the film’s lush skyline to create a language of wannabes who would stop at nothing to get that new villa on the Gold Coast.

Let’s then applaud one more moral fable from Bhatt’s sensible stable.

“Jannat” tells us to waste not, want ‘nought’…By all means covet the zeroes on that pay cheque. But don’t forget that if you run after the zeroes your life ends up in the zero zone.

Forty years ago in Hrishikesh Mukherjee’s “Satyakam” Dharmendra had refused to succumb to all the temptations of materialism that were strewn in his path to salvation. Lying dying of cancer, he’s asked by his wife: “Finally what do you have to say about your life of integrity?”

“I’ve lived,” Dharmendra says at the end of “Satyakam”.

Can Emran Hashmi (playing the small-time wheeler dealer who turns into a cricket match-fixer, criminal and moral transgressor) turn around before his gruesome death to say he has lived?

Yes, Arjun (Emran) has loved. At heart “Jannat” is a dark tragic love story. While the girl’s innocence and the man’s corruptible countenance resembles “Kalyug”, the whole dilemma of the beloved being instrumental in destroying the criminal hero echoes “Gangster”.

Both “Kalyug” and “Gangster” were superior in content and treatment. Debutant director Kunal Deshmukh cannot escape the clich

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