The dark horse

The dark horse

Most actors need just one moment and one well-written line to show their mettle. I have just stumbled upon the trailer of ‘Kapoor and Sons’. Most...

Is Rishi Kapoor the surprise package of this decade?

Most actors need just one moment and one well-written line to show their mettle. I have just stumbled upon the trailer of ‘Kapoor and Sons’. Most people on social media have gushed about Rishi’s makeup.That is silly. Actors are aided by makeup. So coming back to the trailer, one moment and Rishi’s old man character delivers a razor sharp dialogue – “Teri mummy nahi hai?” Sidharth Malhotra’s laugh at that point sounds natural.

The other such moment of owing came in ‘Agneepath’ (2012), where a Rauf Lala simply walks to a kid Vijay and asks him why he never saw him before in this year and Vijay, oozing with attitude, replies –“Thaa nahi to dikhoonga kaisey?” You would think the audience will whistle, they did, but only when Rishi quickly added – “Oho, shaana hai!” The way Rishi’s Rauf Lala enjoys, even his defeat in a conversation makes you know that this man is pure designated evil.

But this trailer has made me left thinking that this actor is now making the biggest use of the new Indian Cinema. With an audience, which is willing to accept its actors and stars in different roles and images, Rishi is riding the wave big time. One can safely conclude that the only star from the 70s, who has now been able to add life to his box office longevity is Rishi Kapoor, the only other name is, of course, the biggest of them all, Amitabh Bachchan.

For a large part of the 70s and 80s, Rishi Kapoor never really got his due. He was also probably the first star right through the 70s and 80s who bucked the trend and continued with his real acting. Today realistic cinema is the “in thing”. It has not just come to the rescue of a bored audience from the two-three limited genre makers and it also offered us actors like Rishi in surprisingly delicious avatars.

The most noticeable was Rauf Lala. ‘Agneepath’ (2012) in my book is one of the most intelligent retellings of a classy cult movie. The director decided to chop off four bad guys from the original and put just one Rauf Lala to the audience and what a master stroke it turned out to be. Rauf Lala was a man proud of his own evil.

So brilliantly underlined in the moment when he knows he is down and dusted and yet when Hrithik’s Vijay calls him Abbu he immediately snarls at him and says “Mera naam Rauf Lala hai haramzaade, Rauf Lala.” He does not need mercy or forgiveness even in his last moment and wants to go down fighting.

Rauf Lala was proud of selling young girls to wild men as a restaurant owner would proudly serve biryani to his customers. Rauf Lala almost stole the show from both Vijay and Sanjay Dutt’s Kancha in the movie. It was a strong backing of the story that made Kancha look the bigger villain but Rauf Lala stole the catcalls and the audience love. He only underlined his capability for dark roles in Aurangzeb.

The second role with an impact came in ‘Jab Tak Hai Jaan’. With due respect to our greatest director ever, JTHJ in my book is Yash Chopra’s second most third class movie, had he not made ‘Parampara’. The only good thing about that one was Rishi Kapoor explaining his own philosophy of love to Katrina.

Now comes ‘Kapoor and Sons’, where Rishi’s expressions and classy dialogue delivery makes you look forward to another hopeful paisa vasool movie. I write paisa vasool only for the movie because Rishi, in his current form, will be more than the value of the ticket.

One day when critics and admirers will sum up this phenomenal actor’s career they might say that this man like a clever batsman in a one day game saved his best for the last, some might argue it was the trend of a certain kind of movies which came to his aid. Who cares about it! I am enjoying this show till it lasts!

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