Friday, December 26, 2014

Ugly


Why is this movie named "Ugly"? Right from the first scene where Rahul carelessly has a shouting match with his wife in front of his kid to the last scene (since it will be a huge spoiler, I'm not going to enunciate it here), Ugly is a journey into the seedy underbelly of human emotions. And it's ugly.


Ugly is the story of  Kali's kidnapping and the subsequent efforts of her biological father Rahul (a struggling actor) and her foster father Shoumik (a policeman in the upper echelons of the heirarchy) to find her. Not a chrismassy tale by a long shot. But Kashyap has never been one for the conventional. If you want the yule-tide spirit, Kashyap has certainly not obliged. But what he's given is a gripping tale. A story of how each peron's individual agenda plays havoc. 

Every character in the movie has an agenda and unresolved issues. Rahul has ambitions of being an actor and is bitter at his spate of failures in providing for his family. Shalini wants love and affection. Chaitanya wants money but is in for the long haul. Rakhee wants a quick buck and is willing to sleep around to get it. Shalini's brother wants Shoumik's pull and influence. Every character has motives that are pulling them in opposite directions. And every character has insecurities and fears that force him or her to behave in a certain way. The consequence . . . ? 

Everybody loses sight of Kali in the bargain. Shoumik (though shown as an efficient cop) let's his prejudices blind him to small details of the investigation. Rahul (though a doting father) lets his friend guide him down the wrong path. Shalini (though a decent lady) let's her want of affection affect her judgement. At the end of the movie you come out shell-shocked. The magnitude of human follies leaves you numbed. The consequence of individual insecurities leaves you distraught. At the very end of "Body of LIes", Ed Hoffman leave Roger Ferris with a parting shot, "Nobody's innocent in this shit, Ferris". In "V for Vendetta", V gives the public something to think about in his address to them after blowing up the Old Bailey, "Truth be told, if you're looking for the guilty, you need only look into a mirror". These two statements sum up the movie. 

Dark. Somber. Real. That's Kashyap for you. He has made you think with every movie that he's made. Ugly messes with your head. It's a story of you and me. We all have our insecurities, our fears and our prejudices. And the consequences of these are frightening to consider. The sum total of all of our weaknesses is humongous; and more often than not has disastrous consequences.