Aaja Nachle was so B-grade, says MF Husain | india | Hindustan Times
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Aaja Nachle was so B-grade, says MF Husain

He had booked an entire cinema hall for the special screening of his muse Madhuri Dixit's comeback movie, Aaja Nachle. But veteran artist MF Husain tells Khalid Mohamed that the film's production values are very B-grade.

india Updated: Dec 06, 2007 12:13 IST

Whatever the overall response to Aaja Nachle may have been, MF Husain who booked an entire cinema hall at the Lamcy Plaza in Dubai, sounded pretty upbeat after the screening - but only about Madhuri Dixit. She has made her comeback to the movies five years after Devdas and Hum Tumhare Hain Sanam.

Sparkling but lacklustre
Over the phone, he remarked that she was as sparkling as ever. On the downside, he emphasised that there were major problems with the film, "Its production values are very B-grade. Surely, they could have been enhanced. After seeing the film, I spoke to Madhuri about this. She said that it was because the theme is that of a middle class and because the story is set in a small town." <b1>

Husain feels that the film produced by the Yash Raj banner has let down the actress considerably: "I'm not talking of giving her more glamorous costumes or building bigger sets. I honestly feel the way she was shot was not fair. The camerawork was the weakest.. this is surprising considering the film has been directed by a cameraman (Anil Mehta).

"Also the film was directorially flat." The artist, who is a keen follower of international cinema, continues, "It's like this. Meryl Streep will shine in whichever film she acts. Marlon Brando had to just appear for a two-minute role and he would do chutti of everyone else. Even Satyajit Ray had acknowledged the power of stars' screen presence. Take Greta Garbo or Marilyn Monroe - you can forget their films but you can never forget them."

Without punctuation, Husain says, "If you ask me, Madhuri doesn't need any director or specially created characters.No one in the film industry has understood this about her That is why no classics have been made with her to date."

Quite upset with the production values of Aaja Nachle.., the artist repeats, "I really don't know why the film looks so shabby. Also what was all that choreography about? What did Vaibhavi Merchant do? I have no hesitation in saying that only Saroj Khan could have done justice to the choreography. And the music! Was that music?" As soon as the finale's Laila Majnu ballet sequence started, Husain couldn't help saying, "At that very moment, I knew yeh film to hawa mein gayee."

Up in smoke
The artist also says he doesn't have any problems if his forth right views are not liked by the film's producer. "I have to say what I feel," he affirms. At the film's special screening in Dubai, Husain had displayed six new canvases of Madhuri Dixit, which he did for the event Dubai's royal family was among those who attended the show. Meanwhile, Husain is in the midst of his magnum opus project - a series on the history of Indian cinema.