Chaahat Ek Nasha... (2005)
Jai Prakash - Director / Anand Raj Anand - Music
Praveen Bharadwaj - Lyrics / Running time: 2 hours 29 minutes
It has been far too long since we had a full-length article here at Army of Monkeys featuring the lovely Ms. Manisha Koirala. Yes, I am about to defend my favorite actress for what's about to be displayed. Manisha has a somewhat colorful and varied track record. She's been in some of the best Indian movies I've ever seen, and has also played a part in some of the worst. I thought 1942 - A Love Story was riveting. Lajja had some very good points to make, and it made me think a lot. I also enjoyed Akele Hum, Akele Tum, despite it being a remake of the American film, Kramer vs. Kramer. She is a good actress. She just needs a better agent, since she was also a star of Jaani Dushman, as well as what we're about to see.
Chaahat Ek Nasha (loosely translated: "desire is an addiction," or so I'm told) is certainly nowhere near as bad as Jaani Dushman, but it still is not much of a showcase for Ms. Koirala's skills. Every article I've seen about this film mentions that it is in some way inspired by the American pop stars Madonna and Britney Spears. I guess I can see what they're talking about, but if I hadn't heard that prior to watching this, I would not have picked up on it on my own. This is more of a look at the music business, as seen from the eyes of a few of its key players. Oh, and a little bit of a warning, there is some harsh language in the subtitles of this one (on Page 14), so just a heads-up.
There are a few repeat performers here, so let's see who we've got.
As mentioned a moment ago, Manisha Koirala is with us today. She's made several appearances here at Army of Monkeys. We've seen her in 1942: A Love Story (short), Agni Sakshi, Gupt, Jaani Dushman, and Lajja (short). I've rambled a bit about her already, so I'll just move along to the next one!
Also joining us is Sharad Kapoor, another Jaani Dushman veteran, where he played the ill-fated Victor (killed by a tire!). He also played a villain in Yeh Hai Jalwa, as the sleazy and double-dealing Vishal. He does break his streak of playing characters with names starting with "V," so don't go calling him typecast.
Last but not least is Shehal Dabhi, who was last seen as the Self-Proclaimed Handsome Rickshaw Driver in Mast. He's got a larger role this time, and messier hair.
A final special mention goes to my good friend Samita, who helped out with some of my proofreading! Shukriya, Didi!
For this outing, we have on the roster:
|Mallika Arora (Manisha Koirala) - Once a huge pop star, she is now in the waning days of her fame. She's also a little too fond of the bottle, if you get my drift.|
|Rashmi Jetli (Preeti Jhangiani) - One of Mallika's biggest fans with aspirations of fame. She seems to be pretty good-natured and not the least bit malicious.|
|Rahul Kapoor (Aryan Vaid) - The lover and producer of Mallika. He may be called a bit fickle, but he's got his reasons.|
|Jaidev (Sharad Kapoor) - He's a mentally unbalanced bodyguard, working for Mallika. To say that he lacks judgment in the use of violence would be an understatement.|
|Manmohan Rangeela (Sayaji Shinde) - One of the partners involved in Mallika and Rashmi's careers. He seems to be a fairly nice guy.|
|Dr. Sanjeev (Govind Namdev) - Stern Father Figure for our film. He's concerned about Rashmi's future, but is willing to let her pursue her dreams. For a while, anyway.|
|Liza - One of Mallika's assistants. She's all into Jaidev, but he's got his eyes on someone else. Undaunted, she's a bit on the aggressive side when pleading her case.|
|Chandan Benarsi (Shehal Dabhi) - He's also a composer, and will be happy to tell you - at great length - about his fusion of rock and pop, that he calls "shock music." Lucky for us, we don't get to hear any.|
The ending fight is a masterpiece of stunt work and combat choreography. I'll bet Bobby Deol just wishes he got to do this one.