I’ve nothing against sex comedies. Hrishikesh Mukherjee’s Sabse Bada Sukh, Abhinay Deo’s Delhi Belly or from abroad A Midsummer Night’s Sex Comedy and Porky’s were genuinely stylish, funny and sexy.
Great Grand Masti is none of the above. Peering into deep cleavages and watching table elevate from the pressure of an erect penis were smut jokes that ended with the smartphone. Miraculously the kahan-farce-gaye-yaar presentation’s three male leads Riteish Deshmukh, Vivek Oberoi and Aftab Shivdasani continue to be associated with the puerile and hopelessly outdated series.
Aftab unabashedly tells me it’s because of the temptation of a Rs. 100-crore film. I’ve shocking news for Aftab. When he plays the piano with his supposedly erect penis (we are not shown the hideous sight, thank God for Pahlaj Nihalani) no one at the show that I attended laughed. They were busy figuring out how any self-respecting piano can take this phallic insult. Not even adolescent boys who probably watch porn on the internet when their parents are not home would laugh at something so tacky.
I can understand Aftab’s desperation to be on camera. He is almost out of work and a sex comedy seems the right remedy for a run-down career.
But Riteish Deshmukh? He’s doing reasonably well for himself, though not as a leading man. But yes, he’s doing fine as a second lead. More importantly he comes from a distinguished political family in Maharashtra. Does it look decent for him to be tugging angrily at a man’s penis while speaking to his screen wife on the phone? Or to be putting his mouth close to Aftab’s anus to such out snake poison?
Maybe Riteish genuinely believes in the power of the sex comedy to make a certain section of audiences-for whom khud khushi does not mean suicide-happy.
When I asked Riteish what impelled him to do something so sleazy and downright obnoxious as Great Grand Masti Riteish didn’t reply.
Vivek Oberoi who has done outstanding films in the past like Company, Sathiya, Omkara, Shootout At Lokhandwala and Rakta Charitra and whose name is associated with serious philanthropy in real life did defend himself against the indefensible.
When I asked him what made him do Great Grand Masti, Vivek replied, “A film is a film….it’s just that…some of them translate into something greater, like a movement or an idea, but the bulk of them are just meant to serve as entertainment….and cater to a cross sections!”
Vivek then cleverly reminded me of my own trysts with the tawdry. “A senior journalist with deep cinematic understanding and knowledge of music, art and culture….sometimes does pure fluff pieces that people will consume and forget in moments or days. But also chooses, every once in a while, to write deeper work that remains etched in memory! That’s the closest parallel I can draw.”
Then came Vivek’s well-aimed pot-shots at those like me who condemn him for attempting such a cheesy sex comedy. “Would I want my kids to see Great Grand Masti when they grow up? I hope to be able to raise them open-minded and non-judgmental!”
I certainly hope Vivek returns to his metier, namely dark intense dramas that question the ethics of a democracy that fosters injustice. The closest Great Grand Masti gets to defining the cult of injustice is when Vivek’s screen-wife secretly does the karva chauth vrat for him while openly pulling him up for his roving eye.
The wives forgive their promiscuous slutty husbands. We forgive you, Vivek- Aftab- Riteish. We know it’s a success-driven industry and you haven’t seen a success in some time. But this is not what audiences want. This is not what you should bend your rules of self-discipline to do. It’s such a waste of time.