Just when I had given up hope of Tere Bin Laden releasing in Singapore, it did! And here are my random thoughts after watching it. I'll try my best not to have too many spoilers in case you have yet to watch it.
Image courtesy http://vrfranks.com
- First, brilliant brilliant casting, especially Pradhuman Singh who plays Noora/Osama. Director Abhishek Sharma had real vision to imagine that this guy could pull off such a convincing Osama! I especially loved the way he said, "Aande" and "Kukkad". You could really feel his deep and sincere love for his aande and his kukkad.
- Ali Zafar, who plays Ali, is absolutely great. He acted so well I did not believe google when it told me that he's a superstar singer in Pakistan! He's got the right blend of Shahid's good looks and Sharman's bechara-ness, which make him perfect for this role.
- The story is, of course, completely fresh, and not something every director would approach without fearing the ramnifications. But Abhishek Sharma makes it work and how. I wonder if being the writer of the movie you're directing helps to put on celluloid exactly what you envisioned in your mind when you were writing.
- I loved the fact that there was no unnecessary romantic angle in the movie in spite of the good-looking lead actor. I was a little worried that they would have something between him and Zoya, but they really surprised me very pleasantly when the subtle romantic track turned out to be between Zoya and... oh well, you gotta watch the movie!
- I am a little surprised that the US let this through but Pakistan banned it.
- The scene with the truck reminded me of my Pakistan trip. Though they shot most of the movie in India, I was thrilled to see that they had got hold of an authentic Pakistani truck for these scenes.
- There were only about two songs, and one of them goes something like, "He's a gudd-looking ullu da paththa." Now normally, I hate songs that mix Hindi and English, but this song is so apt and catchy, it really sticks in your head. Viv and I were singing it as we walked back from the theatre to the bus stop! (Viv corrected me when I sang, "He's a good-looking ullu da paththa" and said it's actually "gudd-looking" instead. Point taken.)
- The flow of the movie is brilliant -- how Ali meets each of the characters who partner him in the scam is done very naturally and help to develop the story. Why they would agree to be part of the fiasco is also very believable, and not to mention funny, especially the RJ's reason.
- The movie is hilarious -- laugh-out-loud from start to finish. It is a spoof but not the annoying kind. The screenplay makes it really work. It experiments with all levels from humour -- from the very subtle (watch out for the umbrella that wouldn't close -- it comes back!) to slapstick (the scene involving Sikandar and the grenade).
- In spite of being a comedy, the movie has its hard-hitting message all right. Cue the scene at the coffee machine.
- The problem with most Bollywood movies that start out being very funny is that after the interval, the fun dies and the melodrama starts, leading to an extremely lame end. It's like two movies from completely different genres were sewn along the interval. Not with Tere Bin Laden though. The movie actually gets funnier as it progresses (yeah I know it's hard to believe!) and it has a great ending.
- The dialogue is utterly witty. Almost every scene has a classic line. You'll really need to watch it again to fully catch each line. I can safely say that this is in the top 5 list of the funniest movies I have ever watched.
- I wonder if Osama himself watched it, and how he reacted.
- I can't wait for the DVD.