I watched Namastey London yesterday and expected it to be one of those fluffy mediocre movies made for an NRI audience. I watched it only because I’ll watch almost any Bollywood film and went in with low expectations, especially because I haven’t enjoyed Katrina Kaif’s acting so far. Now I have to say something I never thought I’d say: I love Katrina Kaif. There, I said it! I could maybe chalk this bold statement up to me spending another cold lonely winter night in Minnesota, thus being more vulnerable to Bollywood’s spell, but nahin! Dosto, I would say the same thing if I were watching this movie with a wonderful boyfriend at an outdoor movie festival on a beautiful summer night. Do you understand NOW what a bold, bold statement that is? She drew me in immediately, and I liked her through the entire movie, she could do no wrong. This is one of the things I love about Bollywood, I will just fall in love with the stars in one movie, and will do it with stars I had no idea I’d like, ones who I detested in other movies; like Kaif in Sarkar, Maine Pyaar Kyun Kiya and Partner. It happened to me with Karisma Kapoor in Dil To Pagal Hai. It happened to me in with Kareena Kapoor in Omkara, and it’s happened with others. Most of the stars have me from the first time I see them, but I like it even more when I didn’t like them and suddenly switch my opinion. So how thrilling to shock myself by say things like, “I love Katrina Kaif!” I love to prove myself wrong! I remember seeing Partner with Nandini, and thought Kaif was so stiff and looked so vacant. Then Nandini explained that Kaif needed her lines dubbed by someone else for the film as she didn’t have command of the language. Nandini said this gave her hope that she herself could then even be a Bollywood star if Hindi fluency wasn’t a requirement. Me too! I’ve heard about the Katrina/Akshay chemistry, and now I truly understand it after seeing Namastey London. I love how Kumar checks her out in these scenes, like a gentleman predator:
Sure it was a light movie, but I was pleasantly surprised with Katrina’s character.
Kaif successfully captures that Jazz loves the independence that living in England has provided her, yet she loves her Hindustani roots.
Ahh! Back home taking in the Ganga! I mean I have to hand it to her, she looks really in love with her mother India here.
She even gets to share some serious Bollywood pearls of wisdom:
I especially liked the stupid one dimensional portrayal of the Britishers all (except for Charlie Brown’s father) being shallow bigots. They even have bad teeth! These Britishers said great lines like:
At BFC, we’re always looking for chances to break into Bollywood, and here’s another example of how it could be done. How fun it would be to play a dastardly racist! I’ve put it out there Bollywood, now come and find me! I dare you! Nandini, are you in? And one final thing, the movie also included the brutally handsome Upen Patel. Here he’s warned by his father (Javed Sheikh) and the picture of Mecca on the wall, not to shack up with a girl:
Look at him tell off his fiancee’s racist parents here:
I’ll tell you what’s a crime and what’s unacceptable, that Patel is so stunning! It sets the standard just too high for most humans. And now that I look more closely, I see Avril Lavigne is playing the role of his girlfriend. Now here’s a bit more about the movie.
Namastey London (Hindi: नमस्तेलंदन, Urdu: لندنNamaste Landan) is a Bollywood film directed by Vipul Amrutlal Shah and set in London, England, United Kingdom. Akshay Kumar, Katrina Kaif, Nina Wadia, Upen Patel and Rishi Kapoorstar in the film. Jasmeet “Jazz” Malhotra (Katrina Kaif) is an Indian girl, brought up lovingly by her father Manmohan Malhotra (Rishi Kapoor). Jazz loves everything that is British – something her father, a very Indian man with very Indian values, does not approve of. And he’s not alone. Parvez Khan (Javed Sheikh), Manmohan’s best friend, has a son, Imran Khan (Upen Patel), who also embraces Western culture. In fact, he lives with his British girlfriend, something Parvez simply cannot tolerate. Jazz is forced to marry a local from India: Arjun Singh (Akshay Kumar), Punjabi farmer. When the couple come back to London, it turns out that they are not married under British law due to Jazz’s deception to her father. Arjun Singh is crushed to find this out. Furthermore he realises that his beautiful bride still intends to marry her British boyfriend, thus being forced to watch as Jazz flirts with another man. However, Arjun won’t give up without a fight and sets out to make his wife fall in love with him. (wikipedia)
From Namastey London, “Rafta Rafta” by RDB (Rhythm Dhol Bass) and Himesh Reshammiya, lyrics by Javed Akhtar: