Thursday, March 30, 2006

Inside Man's Chaiyya Chaiyya sandwich

Now that's what I call music!

Spike Lee's bank robbery movie Inside Man grabs your attention right from frame 1 (in fact, right from the time the Universal Studio's logo comes on) by playing A.R. Rahman's Chaiyya Chaiyya (from Dil Se) over its
opening credits! Sadly, this is not complemented by Clive Owen and Jodie Foster dancing on top of a train, though no one's complaining especially since the song is played once again for the closing credits! Even better is the fact that in both cases the song is played in full with only some minor remixing thrown in.

The movie itself is full of surprises like that, not generated by the plot but rather with sharp and incredibly witty exchanges of dialogue between the major characters or the Players, as Lee likes to call them. It is quite reminiscent of Dog Day Afternoon in that this is one heist movie that should be classified as character-driven, rather than plot-driven which, while we are it, is riddled with holes. No single person in this story is a one-dimensional cardboard cutout, a plot-device, the typical Hollywood stereotype; each one seems real, with his own backstory and personality, all of it captured very efficiently in the dialogue. This is one special movie!


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