Ronin Dhonin, Laughin Shaffin, Romancin Shomancin, Actionin Maxshunin, Dramain Shamain…
Imagine serious Samurais on Prozac. Everyone becomes melodramatic, demonstratively passionate, so much so that you hear the dialog as if it were written by Kader Khan!
As a Keanu Reeves fan, I will be the first one to admit that some things are illogical, and could drive your friends to disown you. If you admit to liking anything in 47 Ronin, the entire film-viewing fraternity might discard you in a looney bin and stomp you so you never come out.
However, I have a funny bone that helped me through this very-unlike-a-samurai-film samurai film.
We have proof (The Last Samurai) that Samurai films can turn a jumping-on-Oprah’s-couch boy into a serious, bearded, face-your-demons alone kind of guy. But this movie is so amazingly hilarious, it turns the most serious samurais into weeping, laughing, joking, confessing, demonstrative men. Imagine 47 of them singing, ‘Ye dosti’ a la Jai and Veeru of Sholay.
And Gabbar! Yes, there’s Gabbar here too, but he wants to marry Basanti…
Basanti is the dead overlord’s daughter who has grown up offering us a glimpse of a what could have been a Heathcliff and Catherine romance. But that track doesn’t really work out because Keanu aka Heathcliff is found out mid showcase battle. Damn! This Hindi film Karma shows up with Niyati to ruin everything. Shogun with a gold upside down rice bowl hat shames Catherine’s dad into killing himself. Basanti is taken away by Gabbar and Jai (our Keanu bhaiyya) and 46 Veerus are now banished into the forest because Gaaonwaale are too bechare to support them.
Rest becomes fun because you start hearing the dialog in Hindi. Here is a smattering:
‘Tum daayan ke peeche jaao, main Basanti ko bachata hoon’
‘Is dayan ke saare roop pehchaanta hoon main!’
‘Bachao mujhe Keanu! Is darinde se!’
‘Maine tumhe galat samjha! Mujhe maaf kar de dost! Tumhare saath ladne mein mujhs garv hai.’
Watch this movie at your own peril. If the Japanese cast explaining Japanese customs to other Japanese doesn’t amuse you, then the Japanese cast speaking Engrish just might make your day.
Poor Keanu. His love for martial arts drove him to make Man Of Tai Chi and now this. a movie that couldl drive anyone to Ronin dhonin. But I was saved by Hindi dubbed version that played in my head!