Monday, 12 January 2009

Ghajini: lost opportunity

Take a look at the ingredients: a weird case of short term memory loss, a dedicated actor who’s chiseled himself for this role, and pretty good direction – one would have expected so much more from Ghajini.

Of course I am biased by Memento, and I’m glad that Ghajini wasn’t a copy. But the story could’ve been made so much more complex and thrilling. Instead, they chose a fairly simple story line in which no serious complications arise out of Sanjay’s anterograde amnesia. He seems to have a system that works fairly well: except when his enemies ruin it for him. And then it follows the traditional good-guy-gets-rid-of-bad-guy.

Well, here’s the thing about Sanjay’s condition. He could have felt the rage of losing his girlfriend every 15 minutes, or whenever he saw himself in the mirror. But there’s only one scene which shows that, but it’s for the benefit of advancing the story – it doesn’t add much to Sanjay’s character. Why didn’t the director repeat that scene a few times, so that the character’s condition could be more ingrained in the viewer’s head?

Why doesn't the movie explore Sanjay's psyche, and have him narrate the thoughts that are running in his head? The man would be under such tremendous confusion trying to figure out what’s happening around him – why not unleash that confusion on to the audience?

Why does the story, instead of making it bigger with the endless possibilities of anterograde amnesia, choose to talk about the courtship between a millionaire and an aspiring model? Couldn’t all that material have been saved for a different yuppy movie?

I’m glad I watched Ghajini, and I did like the movie. But I guess I had my hopes up way too high.