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Lucia Lane, an English writer by way of the US, arrives in Bombay to watch the filming of one of her novels. She's nearing middle age, she's had several husbands, she's lonely and self-absorbed. Hari, a screenwriter, offers to show her around. She's interested only in the film's leading man, Vikram, younger than she, married, and building a career as a matinee idol. Lucia takes every opportunity to be near "V," making scenes in front of his wife, demanding his attentions. Hari is long-suffering, carrying Lucia's messages to V, helping her out when the affair gets out of hand. Meanwhile, V's career suffers, with unpleasant repercussions. Who will bring things to a halt? Written by
This 1970 movie starring the then Indian heart throb Shashi Kapoor, and his long time wife Jennifer Kendal, or Kapoor (billed with one or the other name in her films)is in a time warp. An early merchant-Ivory production, it shows how far this duo and their other usual collaborators have come. On another level, to see what Bombay looked like 30 years ago, compared to what it is today is a shocking experience in time travel. To see Shashi Kapoor as a slim youthful sex symbol today, when one has been seeing him in the 90s, say, in 'IN CUSTODY.' as an incredibly obese old dying man with now lightened hair, is also one of the most striking transformations of any former sex symbol in history. Marlon Brando resembles his former self much more than Kapoor, just to hint at the transformation. Another step back in time is to see Kapoor's long time wife (married from 1958 until her death from cancer in September 1984) in essence playing herself. Except for the refreshing, nostalgic look at Bombay, the other subjects this film features are best left alone, like the dead. What you will see is very depressing. And the entire theme of the movie, already weak in 1970, is completely irrelevant now. Spare yourself the pain. I only got through it because I didn't realize the youthful, healthy Kapoor was the monstrously looking creature he is today. And even when the utter bitchiness of the late Jennifer Kendal had me on the edge, I stuck it out through the rest of the film. But it is an experience I would not recommend.
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