There was really no earthly reason for me to drag myself off to see `Dirty Politics’, espcially on Holi, because the last time K C Bokadia did something worth looking at was more years back than I can remember.
But then I whizzed past all my pals splashing `gulal’, dodging several enthusiastic kids and their coloured water filled balloons, to see just how many shades Mallika Sherawat has left. This was the actor who sizzled her way up the Bollywood ladder, left to hang out with Jackie Chan, and then headed out to potential Hollywood blockbusters. Last seen, the hot Indian export was being a sorry serpent. And then the lady vanished.
She’s re-appeared as Anokhi Devi ( shades of Bhanwari Devi?) from Rajasthan. A not-very educated dancing girl ( helpfully called ‘nachaniya’ ) whose lush charms take her from the stage where she dances, twirling her `ghagra’, to the political arena where she makes men swing to her tune.
There was a time Ms Sherawat showed she had the potential to move past bimbette-dom. ‘Dirty Politics’, however, is not the film where she fulfills it. She flounces about in her `ghagras’, letting the camera peep up. More flesh is on display, when Om Puri, playing the Dirty Old Man to the hilt, has many chances to have at her.
We see ankles, legs, bosom, back, all bare. Puri hams it up and makes the most of his lecher, pawing away happily. The spectators include a clueless Naseer. Ditto Anupam Kher. Ostensibly this is a film which is supposed to put the spotlight on how politics is the preserve of perverts and goons ( Jackie Shroff as a kohl-eyed bad guy muttering threats is hilarious, and just one of the unintentionally funny elements), and how men in power prey upon women.
No such luck. What we get is the kind of film which should have been deep-sixed before it was thought of. And dialogues that had me guffawing helplessly because there was nothing else I could do. Puri, bending over Sherwat : you know how a tiger attacks? ( Oh the poor man, I felt for him). Sherawat, biting his ear : ‘kaat khaaongi’.
And then Sherawat is made to pull out the ‘ch…’ word from her arsenal and yell it out, when she is not crossing her legs, seated on a throne, Sharon Stone-style. And here I thought ‘gaalis’ were being excised left, right and centre.
This is it, kiddies. Me, I’m off to grab the left-over `gujiyas’ and ‘thandai’.
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