Wednesday, April 30, 2008

From Camelot to Tashan

इस दश्त में एक शहर था, वो क्या हुआ, आवारगी...

Let the record show that the last movie the Vyases watched at Sangeet-as-we-know-it was Tashan.

It could’ve been better, but then I suppose it could’ve been worse. Silly movie. I can see why it angered so many reviewers. But then, there was Akshay Kumar, who manages sparking chemistry with most of his leading ladies and does so here with Kareena Kapoor, quite under the nose of her bulked-up beefy beau. Hee hee. Really, must Kareena Kapoor be so thin? Quite worrisome.

Anyway, so it ends. Sangeet 70 mm has been here for nearly four decades. Only across the street from my school St Ann’s, this was where we were taken to see Gandhi and Born Free. A cinema hall full of school girls in navy blue uniforms, chattering and laughing in excited anticipation. We watched Jungle Book here. There were others: first day shows, pushing through milling crowds, trying to inveigle tickets from the staff, or the tele-booking man; leisurely late night shows with the hall only half-filled, lounging in the best seats.

On May 1, the cinema closes down. The structure will be knocked down to make room for what else but a multiplex. We went a little sentimental, Shweta and I. Made it a point to buy the famous sandwiches one last time, said our goodbyes to the ticket-men, the canteen people and the parking gent. I have the ticket stubs and I think I’ll keep them.