This movie features what is surely one of cinema's top ten plots driven by bad, bad ideas. Many questions are raised, such as:
- how on earth does a Hindi film present a character married to saintly Rani Mukherji sleeping with a prostitute? A prostitute played with great glee by Preity Zinta, but still. The surrogate is a fine idea, but 1) be honest about it to everyone and 2) get the doctor's help in order to prevent years of under-the-surface seething, guilt, etc. If anyone knows how this movie was received in India, please let me know.
- why does Preity's item number dress look like a 1991 prom reject, and why is it paired with glitter moon boots?
- why does Salman wear a (p)leather shirt? Not jacket. Shirt. Around the collar of which is worn a tie.
- why does no one notice that Madhu, not Priya, is at the ceremony? And isn't it interesting how the effect of having a stiff shawl over your head makes you look like a Star Wars character?
- does chewing gum really make you look so cheap and young? I'll have to stop.
(Note: thet plot of this movie did actually bother me in some serious ways, but I kept telling myself "It's just a movie, and there is so much you don't understand about the expectations of and pressures on women in this culture," even when Priya says she is incomplete becuase she can't be a mother. Becuase otherwise I would have had to turn it off, and if it were a movie from my own culture, with its own wacked-out concepts about the roles and worth of women, I would have.)
Increasing exposure to Salman Khan has not demystified his appeal for me. I can see how maybe he is a pretty good dancer most of the time. But that's all I can say on his behalf.
And, despite my very positive memory of seeing it on the big screen in 1990, owing entirely to holding hands with Chris Lisak, the second of my seven crushes on boys named Chris, Pretty Woman does not merit any kind of remake, tribute, or similar. It's a bad, morally bankrupt story.