Sunday, November 22, 2009

Videonama: The hidden language of 'Kurbaan Hua'

Regardless of the hoopla surrounding Kurbaan (and its good when a movie that tackles a multi-faceted subject evokes a lot of debate - no matter how ludicrous), I haven't seen it yet. But what I have been enjoying is the video for the song Kurbaan Hua.

For a film that deals with Muslim identity and conflict, it's flagship video is chock full of biblical imagery. Now you could tell me "Dude, all monotheistic religions are inter-derivative". To which I'd say "Dude, if I wanted a lesson, I'd go to school". It's much more fun looking at moving pictures instead.

This image conjures up visions of sin, punishment and the seeking of absolution. Why is it raining? Rain = time tested symbol for Outpouring of Emotion, usually sadness or regret.

A rose explodes into flames - which could mean many things: (a) A romance that went up in flames (b) A love that became the source of betrayal or (c) a new, really funky Food Network show with Rose Flambé recipes.

The unabomber look on Saif conjures up mystery and danger. Leaves swirling around represent an impending storm. Plus, it's all a buildup for an Ooh moment when Saif takes off the jacket and does his best to look sexy with his hair flying around.

A barking, rabid BLACK dog evokes the feeling of being hunted. Dog owners should unite and protest this kind of stuff if you ask me.

A woman dressed in tattered lace appears with kohl streaked eyes - which led me to believe that Kurbaan is about a woman who starts with the expectation of a good life that ends up horribly wrong.

A woman tries to escape her fashion choice. Since Vidya Balan is not in this movie, you have to believe there is another interpretation here. Let's try this: Fashion represents Life, you do the math.

Well, we all know what a circling vampire chick means. Wait, actually I don't! What DOES this add up to?

The story of Adam and Eve is well-documented in the Quran. Here Eve succumbs to temptation and Satan is a green (the color of envy, one of those deadly sins) slithering snake. Why are Adam and Even wearing glitter makeup on their faces and leaves in their hair? Its cinematic!

Easily the most awesome imagery in the song. A girl achieves a state of extreme yogic control and starts levitating while Saif frets underneath. Her passive expression and spreadeagled arms seem to represent crucifixion and a sense of being prosecuted while innocent.

Great balls of fire! One of my favorites. Actually its concentric rings of fire - but they'll do. Saif is in the middle. Saif is trapped! Or this is a movie about a circus - which we know it isn't (but that depends on your point of view)

You can watch the video for Kurbaan Hua on YouTube. Music by Salim-Sulaiman. Vocals by Vishal Dadlani. Hugely entertaining video, guys - congratulations!

Thanks to Dilli Ki Sardi for the link to the controversy surrounding the movie


musical said...

WHAT. A. POST! I watched the video AFTER i read this post, and i am glad i followed this sequence :). It made the whole experience even more entertaining :). I liked the vampire chick quite a lot :). Way better than Twilight stuff ;).

On a serious note, i like the music of Kurbaan, the entire album! Salim-Sulaiman are doing quite well! Any plans of interviewing them, Aspi? As for this song, Vishal's vocals are HOT! And Kareena's portrait in the backdrop was lovely, it was the only thing that brought out whatever Kurbaan/non-comic effect they were aiming for in the video.

Pitu said...

LOL crazy! The movie sucks big time by the way. 3 hrs of migraine-inducing crap.

Delhi should be called Dustpuri said...

Thanks Birather for yet again pricelss post.
movie sucks bad including storyline by KJo and bad acting by the Looser Oberoi !
Kareen might bag some award for obvious lobby of Dharma Productions , that may also get some reward for Rencil DeSilva.

Unknown said...

musical, I did try to interview Salim way back in the Rab Ne days. But the man gives me little bhav :(

Pitu and Dustpuri (gr8 Delhi commentary) - neither of you liked it huh? Is this a case of Bollywood making Hollywood movies for Indian audiences who don't watch Hollywood?

Deep said...

himesh missing from blog STOP need mann ka radio videonama STOP

Banno said...

Does he have enough hair for it to be flying around :)

haven't seen the film too.

Unknown said...

He's got a great hairstylist for sure :)

Mind Rush said...

Doktor Drift, You out do Freud right here! He said life was all about sex and death. Your analysis of the song is just that.
And Doktor Mind Rush wishes to add that spirituality is just a re-packaged combo of sex and death. Kurbaan Hua gives us this lesson visually.

Unknown said...

Mind Rush, I thought Freud said everything was about your mother. Which might finally explain that flying woman circling around Saif.

Joules said...

You are giving too much credit to the visualization. I think the director sat down and copied scenes from all his favorite music videos.

Unknown said...

Joules, often when I watch music vids done in Bollywood I get the feeling that the director just reused an existing set or sets from previous music videos.

This is probably just a cost effective way of doing things - use a previously used location and set, hire a team that knows how to do this kind of stuff, etc.

We are into reuse and recycle.

Anonymous said...

Once when poet Ted Hughes was given an award for some poetry he was surprised how readers praised stuff that he had not even done intentionally in the poem.
Bet those Kurbaan Hua guys are saying, "hell, we good! we did so much symbolism without knowing it!"

Pitu said...

No no, the movie's just super crappy is all.

Ace said...

Aspi, i have a feeling you got paid to do this post. i watched the video and it screams "CORNY" -- the colour black is overused, the song while trying to potray a dark sentiment fails because its got a hum to it that says, 'mere yaar ki shaadi hai' with a low tempo,trying to look cool while sad is over over done, and saif's face reads 'yaar mujhse zabardasti karwaya ke kaam'
... oh i could go on..

"you could say i am too critical and perhaps tending to be a perfectionist, I would say your standards are dropping low"

-in context of the movie that is, not your writing skills :)

Unknown said...

Ace, fair enough. But I'm not much of a critic - more of a fan who is easily entertained who writes about what entertains him. In any case, if I had truly been paid to write about this I would done a much better job :)

Ace said...

thanks for replying Aspiskov :)
well i wasnt really accusing you, i was trying to imply that maybe there was a 'sponsors motive' behind the post. i could be wrong. the reason im soo freaky with reviews is that from what ive heard/read, the so called critics in b'town are sellouts-most of them. again i could be wrong.

ps- nice writing skills
pss- love your fetish with rickshawalas :)

Unknown said...

Most critics in Btown aren't sell outs as much as they just aren't critics. In fact most writers in Btown are hardly writers at all - but they do have access to the stars or some degree through friends. Hence they become writers.

Actually I was hoping that the blogs would throw up a few good Bollywood reviewers outside the system. But that hasn't happened really.

Sunny Verma said...
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