Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Man O Manmohan

O.K., I liked Chhalia, Amar Akhbhar Anthony's one for the ages, but this weekend I saw Coolie and my world will never be the same. "Late Desai" is a period unto itself, like pre-crash Dylan or the English Auden. Cultish and divisive (they're love-or-hate kind of affairs), Manmohan Desai's last three or four movies before his suicide chart the way to a self-awareness that's too gargantuan to be reduced to irony; too gleefully shambolic to suffer plot, except as an unrelenting pullulation of subplots; and escapist to the point of breaking off from any physics known or heretofore imagined to become its own cosmology. The absurd hits a temperature where movie set melts back into ritual, cameras almost an afterthought, cinema colors that move with people sometimes inside.

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