Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Inkaar (Khanna-o-rama Day 3)

After the heavy nature of my past two Khanna-o-rama posts, I'm going to lighten things up a bit by discussing Inkaar, which is a total celebration of some excellent 1970s masala frosting.

It contains (in no particular order):

* Sharp suits
* Now hilariously outmoded technology
* Amjad Khan
* Money isn’t everything
* Helen’s butt
* Kurosawa Akira
* Vinod Khanna kicking ass and taking names

Based in large part on the narrative of Kurosawa Akira’s
Tengoku to Jigoku (英語で High and Low), Inkaar is the story of a would-be industrial tycoon whose plans at industrial tycooning are foiled when the money he borrows for a massive buyout of his company is required instead to pay for the ransom of his driver’s son, accidentally kidnapped by a bad guy.

Inkaar ditches the subtleties of Tengoku to Jigoku with its carefully balanced story and character arcs fluctuating between heaven and hell and instead uses the scenario of the kidnapping to create a rocking Vinod Khanna police drama with heavy doses of 1970s style moralizing on the evilness of money. The transformation actually works quite well and the masala sledgehammer is satisfyingly employed.

We open with upstanding citizen and businessman Haridas Chaudhary not wanting to compromise on the quality of the shoes his company sells. He has a scheme to wrest control of the company back from his money-grubbing associates who are more interested in profit than in selling quality merchandise.

While this scheme is in motion, Haridas returns home to his wife, sister, and young son where an anniversary party is in full swing – with special guest Rajesh Roshan, who sings a song dedicated to family values. Haridas is set up as the ideal father and husband and businessman and employer which makes it an effective shock to see how he reacts to the kidnapping. The driver’s son is Haridas’s son best friend and two even dress alike, Haridas appears to have retained some feelings of solidarity with his lower class origins – emphasis on appears.

As I was expecting since the shoe company opening, the switcheroo happens with the sons and Haridas, who had been willing to shell out big bucks for his own son is suddenly not so eager to pay out for poor Bansi, whose only fault – as Haridas’s wife points out – is to be born to a poor family.

What will happen to poor Bansi!

Yup, Vinod Khanna aka CID Officer Amarnath "Amar" Gill is called in to both TCB regarding the kidnapping and deliver an effective guilt trip to Haridas to get him to pay up.

And, of course, the real fun of the film is watching CID Officer Amar go head-to-head with the kidnapper.

Who could it be?

“You must have recognized me,” says the mysterious kidnapper. And, indeed, since Amjad Khan was announced in the credits, I do know who the villain is but the director – Raj Sippy – teases us with the reveal. We get pretty far in before Amjad ambles up in all his beefy glory.

He’s certainly no match for the snazzy CID Officer Amar and his crack team of technicians.

And that is pretty much all there is to
Inkaar - a showdown between Vinod and Amjad set against the moralistic background of the fall of the tycoon. I don’t want to say too much more for fear of giving the story away and the capers are certainly a selling point here.

But before I wrap this up, it is worth mentioning that Helen has a delightful item number in the same gritty feel that permeates the rest of the film.

I’d also like to point out that certain directors in certain
Ram Balram’s made only two or so years after this cast her as Zeenat Aman’s mother. *chee!*

And since this is Vinod Khanna Appreication Week, I can’t let the opportunity go by to praise his amazing masculine performance in the scene where he rescues Bansi (Oh, you knew he would – that is NOT a spoiler) and snuggles him in a such a way that my ovaries exploded in a perfect example of apply the Tracy Morgan quote about “somebody gonna get pregnant.”

Don’t say I didn’t warn you.


Beth said...

Vinod...with button-up shirt unbuttoned...and tie loose...P@(* U#PRO:WKLEJFM*@_!!!!THUDFAINT. Must see. Even apart from that, it sounds awesome!

Also, kya wording! I hate it when my attempts at industrial tycooning are foiled when the money I borrows for a massive buyout are diverted to paying off a ransom for a kidnapped child I don't even have. Man.

indiequill said...

I LOVE this movie! And yes, this is the movie I automatically think of when I think, "Vinod Khanna is hot". Which is often.

But what really ratchets this movie up for me is that this is probably my fave Amjad Khan role. Gabbar might be iconic but with his one liners and his OTT-ness, I wasn't really shaking in my boots. But I felt the shivers everytime Amjad spoke in this movie. Brr.

Filmi Girl said...

@beth I have a feeling you would enjoy this one - I have a buttload of screencaps of Vinod in various levels of smokingness (hot to uber hot) and I think I'll post them ALL either tomorrow or Friday...

Filmi Girl said...

@indiequill And don't you love the dramatic POV shots of Amjad? Plus the sound effects whenever he enters a scene...!!

ajnabi said...

Good thing my ovaries are of no use to me any more, or I'd have some 'splaining to do after all that HAWTNESS. LOL (Although, TBH, that first screencap is disturbingly reminiscent of Chevy Chase. I think it's the tie.) And speaking of hot, my goodness! Helen! That outfit! Nobody's maa!

Ness said...

I know it's Khanna week(s) and all, but you had me at "hilariously outmoded technology". I'm a SUCKER for that shizz.

Rum said...

OOOOOOOOO Kurosawa retread plus Hot Stuff Khanna is sooo up my alley! Though Toshiro and Vinod cant fight over the hotness factor in my head!

veracious said...

Suit suit suit.

Oh there's a story to this? ;)

Note from Filmi Girl:

I love Bollywood - and all the ridiculous things that happen in Bollywood - but it doesn't mean that I can't occasionally make fun of various celebrities and films.

If you don't like my sense of humor, please just move on by - Trolls are not appreciated and nasty comments will be deleted.

xoxo Filmi Girl
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