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Brian de Palma!
April 24, 2012 12:37 PM   Subscribe

At the end of your Bollywood comedy you have an item song that's supposed to be a tribal song with gibberish lyrics, so why not just list film directors' names? Cue, The Akira Kurosawa song
posted by fearfulsymmetry (25 comments total) 24 users marked this as a favorite

 
the history of the item song is fascinating, it reminds me of the conventions of Golden Era Hollywood weepies, whose primary audience where housewives and shopgirls, which would always find a way to shoe horn in a fashion show or some such.
posted by The Whelk at 12:47 PM on April 24, 2012 [2 favorites]


"Item song: blahblah... but is presented to showcase beautiful dancing women in very revealing clothes... blahblah." Well, certainly can't accuse them of failing to deliver what it says on the poster. Considering that a kiss is (or maybe was) tabu in Bollywood movies, it never ceases to amaze me just how much shimmying, shaking, here-let-me-wrap-my-leg-around-your-groin, high-kicking stuff -- and how few clothes -- they're able to get away with. (Not that there's anything wrong with that.)
posted by Mike D at 12:55 PM on April 24, 2012 [1 favorite]


So should I start saying VIT-tori-OH dee-see-CAH? I'd like that.
posted by jwhite1979 at 12:56 PM on April 24, 2012


...and how few clothes...

Keep in mind that the Indian subcontinent is walking distance from the Earth's sun.
posted by griphus at 12:59 PM on April 24, 2012 [12 favorites]


No Satyajit Ray? I wonder if he's a bigger figure overseas then in his native land.
posted by cazoo at 1:21 PM on April 24, 2012


That was awesome. Also, if you just watched movies made by the name-dropped directors, you'd do pretty well for yourself. entertainment-wise.
posted by oddman at 1:22 PM on April 24, 2012


No Satyajit Ray?

He is mentioned.
posted by You Should See the Other Guy at 1:23 PM on April 24, 2012


2:29 specifically.
posted by You Should See the Other Guy at 1:24 PM on April 24, 2012 [1 favorite]


cazoo: ahem.
posted by Silky Slim at 1:24 PM on April 24, 2012


Or... What YSSTOG said.
posted by Silky Slim at 1:25 PM on April 24, 2012


See also.
posted by Silky Slim at 1:28 PM on April 24, 2012


I hear these:

Tarantino
Mizoguchi
Wilder
Capra
Bertolucci
Peckinpah
Visconti
Oshima
Kurosawa
Wilder
Hitchock
Wajda
Mizoguchi
De Palma
De Sica
Oshima
Lumet
Leone
Truffaut
Satijayit Ray
Woody Allen
(can't make out who's next)
Milos Forman
Godard
posted by You Should See the Other Guy at 1:35 PM on April 24, 2012


An item song, you say?
posted by item at 1:36 PM on April 24, 2012 [4 favorites]


If only I was on 2nd Avenue.
posted by pianomover at 1:36 PM on April 24, 2012



2:29 specifically.


Oh good grief. I've been pronouncing his name wrong for years.
posted by cazoo at 2:02 PM on April 24, 2012


Bertolucci, Bertolucci... Lumet! Lumet!

...is now on repeat in my head. I love this.
posted by longsleeves at 2:09 PM on April 24, 2012


I'm so happy Lumet is on this list.
posted by Bunny Ultramod at 4:00 PM on April 24, 2012


The "supposed" link has the lyrics.
posted by Casuistry at 4:48 PM on April 24, 2012


Oh good grief. I've been pronouncing his name wrong for years.

They (along with most non-Bengalis) mispronounce Ray's name as well.
posted by junebug at 5:16 PM on April 24, 2012


Clearly, they were trying to fit in exotic, non-desi sounding names to create this Mediterranean-isque gibberish language, so it's perfectly okay to not include Indian names in. That they somehow fitted in Satyajit Ray as well is quite... nice. Also, the guy is supposed to be a simulacrum of a cliched tribal; so I'd give a pass on mispronouncing his name.

Well, certainly can't accuse them of failing to deliver what it says on the poster. Considering that a kiss is (or maybe was) tabu in Bollywood movies, it never ceases to amaze me just how much shimmying, shaking, here-let-me-wrap-my-leg-around-your-groin, high-kicking stuff -- and how few clothes -- they're able to get away with.

Item-numbers can and have become controversial at various points, so it's not as if they get a free pass or anything. It's easier to push the envelope gradually in a song-and-dance routine than with abrupt kiss scenes.

The other thing you have to understand: showing kisses is generally considered taboo not because they're considered risque, but because they're personal.
posted by the cydonian at 8:45 PM on April 24, 2012 [1 favorite]


This is hysterical! In searching for more information ( since this film is about Rishi Kapoor playing Rishi Kapoor, son of Bollywood legend, Raj Kapoor), I came across this blog post, which also describes the many ways in which the film makes reference to the Kapoors' own film history. I can only imagine how hard it must have been for them to not crack up while performing the song. :)
posted by bardophile at 9:05 AM on April 25, 2012 [1 favorite]


You Should See The Other Guy, there's lyrics listed in the "supposed" link. You only seemed to have missed Ozu.
posted by IAmBroom at 11:47 AM on April 25, 2012


and Coppola, Coppola!
posted by newpotato at 3:43 PM on April 25, 2012


Okay, this is great.
posted by rmd1023 at 4:10 PM on April 25, 2012


I came across this blog post, which also describes the many ways in which the film makes reference to the Kapoors' own film history. I can only imagine how hard it must have been for them to not crack up while performing the song. :)

Yup, Jai Arjun Singh is gold. Hands down one of the best writers on Bollywood out there. Glad he wrote about this movie and that you've shared his piece; adds quite a bit of a context to the entire thing. :)
posted by the cydonian at 8:46 PM on April 25, 2012


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