Saturday, January 17, 2009

A tribute to Bollywood

Now that I have your attention, let me tell you the truth - this is not a tribute to Bollywood. It's actually the opposite, a 'dis-tribute' to Bollywood as I would like to call it, for lack of a better word or more precisely, my lack of knowledge of one.

Bollywood has been seeking inspiration from Hollywood since eras long gone by. Stunts have been inspired, dialogues have been inspired, entire scenes have been inspired, names have been inspired (remember Fight Club: Members Only) and most frequently, entire movies have been inspired. 

Here's the Bollywood-Hollywood relationship from a different take. What if some of the Hollywood movies were made in Hindi with their names translated literally? Well, here's what we would get:
  • The GodFather - Bhagwan Papa
  • Psycho - Paagal
  • Rear Window - Peeche ki Khidki
  • The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King - Anguthi ka bhagwan: Raja waapas aa raha hain
  • One flew over the cuckoo's nest - Ek Koyal ke ghosla ke upar se ud gaya
The list could have gone on and on. In fact, all of what I had to do was open up the IMDB Top 250 movie list and one in every 7 movies made it to the list. As for the other 6, some of them were too long (Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb), som too short (Wall-E), some Chinese movies, some I couldn't understand how to interpret (The Departed) and some which you wouldn't have understood after I used the Hindi word as suggested by Word AnyWhere (Google's first result for English to Hindi translator).

And if you think the above list is funny, the actual names given to the Hollywood movies when dubbed in Hindi are no less. The best example of this that I can remember is Tomb Raider becoming Sherni No. 1. And Slumdog Millionaire becomes Slumdog Crorepati - what about the Slumdog part of things? I know it's a little difficult to translate that but then how about coming up with an entirely different name for it as is the norm? How about "Jamal ka Kamaal"? (For those who haven't seen the movie, Jamal is the name of the lead character in the movie)

Before I round up the post, let me do some justice to the title of the post. And how? Let's re-vist the legendary "Gandhiji ki dhoti mein" game. This game is a part of growing up of every Indian guy, and the girls who happen to be around them while the game is being played. For those of you who don't know about the game and think of me as a sick, perverted and repulsive bastard, well the game is exactly what you think it is - Think of a Bollywood movie name and then prefix "Gandhiji ki dhoti mein" to that and say it aloud. After years of playing the game as a teenager and loving Bollywood for it, here's revisiting the best of it as a 20-something:
  • Kaante
  • Hungama
  • Sholay
  • Zanjeer
  • Ram Gopal Varma ki Aag
  • Andaaz Apna Apna
  • Golmaal
  • Main Hoon Na
  • Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi
  • Heroes
  • Dhoom
  • Aaja Nachle
  • Bhool Bhulaiya
  • Darna Zaroori Hai
  • Halla Bol
  • Jab We Met
  • Mere Baap Pehle Aap
  • No Smoking
  • Shoot on Sight
  • Ugly aur Pagli
  • Phoonk
  • Mere Do Anmol Ratan
Gandhiji ki dhoti mein Bend It Like Beckham, anyone?

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