Being Cyrus, (2005)
Kamla lent me this film a while ago, and regrettable I’m only finding time now to write about it. She gave it to me, warning me that it’s not your typical Hindi film because, firstly, very little of it is actually in Hindi. Besides that, it has no naach-gaana, no romantic plotline, and characters you’d sooner find in an off-beat Hollywood or European film than in any sort of Indian movie. And all in half the running time of a typical Bollywood film!
Starring Saif Ali Khan, Naseeruddin Shah, Dimple Kapadia, Simone Singh, and Boman Irani, the story follows Cyrus (Khan) as he joins Dinshaw Sethna (Shah) as an assistant. Dinshaw’s wife, Katy (Kapadia), wants more than the laidback life of her pot-smoking husband, and uses Cyrus as a springboard into action. He becomes the catalyst in the downfall of an already dysfunctional family, which also includes the wealthy Farokh (Irani) and his much younger, meek wife (Singh). Nothing turns out according to plan, as people are not who they were made out to be.
Like Dinshaw, the film has a laidback quality that makes it hard to get into at first, but it doesn’t take long for it to evolve into a complex psychological drama with a dose of social commentary. I was particularly affected by the Sethna family’s treatment of their aging patriarch. Suffering from senility and confined to a cramped, dirty apartment with a restricted diet and broken things, despite his wealth, it was hard to feel compassionate for any character but him. This is not only a problem in
It’s easy to envision this film being made in