None of the girls seem promising as far as acting is concerned. Not to forget, the unnecessary skin show, cringe-worthy dialogues and not-so-good music, which made the ride even more exhausting. In fact, there were times when I asked myself: why did Bhandarkar make this film in the first place?
As a filmmaker, Madhur Bhandarkar is known for making hard-hitting, realistic movies and has tasted success with this genre of cinema. Whether it was Tabu-starrer Chandni Bar or Priyanka Chopra-starrer Fashion, Bhandarkar not only impressed the audience with his films but has also won National Awards for the same. After delivering hits like Page 3 and Corporate, Madhur Bhandarkar, undoubtedly, managed to carve his own niche in the industry. While incorporating ‘realism’ in his films has worked wonders for the talented director, it’s time for Bhandarkar to stop repeating his own tried-and-tested formula. Because his last directorial venture Heroine starring Kareena Kapoor Khan didn’t pack a solid punch at the box office and the fate of his latest offering Calendar Girls isn’t going to be any different.
The film is about five beauties who hail from different parts of India and have been chosen for a prestigious annual calendar shoot. The film starts with the introduction of the calendar girls as they come from different backgrounds. Post the glamorous calendar shoot, the girls become famous and obviously their lives are no longer the same. While Nandita Menon (Akansha Puri) gets married into a royal family, Mayuri Chauhan (Ruhi Singh) tries her luck in Bollywood. Thanks to her social media skills, she even manages to get herself noticed big time.
On the other hand, Nazneen (Avani Modi) finds herself in trouble because of her background, despite all the fame. She plays a Pakistani in the film and the clichéd religious aspect comes into the picture in her case. Sharon Pinto (Kyra Dutt) goes on to become a TV anchor for an entertainment show. But within a few months she is informed about her transfer to Delhi so that she can do ‘serious’ journalism. Well, this is exactly when you feel like thanking Mr Bhandarkar for enlightening us about journalism. As for Paroma Ghosh (Satarupa Pyne), she gets embroiled in a match-fixing controversy. And, then she is approached for a reality show so that she can change her image. Now how predictable is that?
Suhel Seth and Rohit Roy also star in the film but they hardly have any screen time. Since the former’s character is based on liquor baron Vijay Mallya, it would have been interesting had Bhandarkar explored his role more. But sadly that’s not the case. Rohit Roy once again plays a photographer and he is just about okay with whatever he does.
Story wise, Bhandarkar’s Calendar Girls isn’t like a revelation. There were instances when the film reminded me of Page 3 and Fashion, which again, were about the glamour world. Apart from the predictable and boring storyline, what’s even more disappointing is the fact that hardly any performance in the film is praiseworthy. None of the girls seem promising as far as acting is concerned. Not to forget, the unnecessary skin show, cringe-worthy dialogues and not-so-good music, which made the ride even more exhausting. In fact, there were times when I asked myself: why did Bhandarkar make this film in the first place?
But hold on, the torture just doesn't end here. If all of this wasn’t enough, there is a cameo in the film by Bhandarkar himself, which is even worse. Guess the filmmaker decided to make an appearance in the film just so he could hear good things about himself and his films at least in reel life. In a way that’s good for Bhandarkar, because after Calendar Girls no one is going to talk good things about him in real life for a very long time.
Film: Calendar Girls
Director: Madhur Bhandarkar
Cast: Ruhi Singh, Satarupa Pyne, Akanksha Puri, Kyra Dutt, Avani Modi, Suhel Seth and Rohit Roy