Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Let's talk about ... Lara Dutta!

The "Let's talk about" series is typically one where I just get to ramble about my favourite actresses and actors for a post, and feature some lovely pictures of them to boot. But I can't quite honestly claim I consider Lara Dutta a favourite. Or do I?

The fact is, this former pagent queen is a consistent positive surprise in my books, but her filmography is filled with movies I just don't really want to watch. I first saw Lara in No Entry, which was the biggest hit of 2005 (yeah, bet you didn't remember that fact, did'ja?). The film itself is an absolutely unbearably unfunny Salman Khan comedy that also has Anil Kapoor and Fardeen Khan (remember him?) as two hapless husbands and one cheating playboy (can you guess who Salman plays?) in another one of those "oh ha ha isn't cheating-except-not-cheating hilarious?" genre comedies. Lara is a gross stereotype of a mistrusting wife of Anil's character, and yet she won me over.

Then there are films like Jhoom Barabar Jhoom which is fairly unpopular (depending on who you talk to), but which I absolutely loved her in! Chalo Dilli is a nice smaller film, too.

Billu Barber gave Lara a fair opportunity to showcase her acting alongside the always magnificent Irffan, and she was definitely good in it. (Overall the film is my favourite from Priyadarshan, the only Hindi film he seems to have actually put some thought and effort into.)

However, about 80% of her career seems to be special appearances or random big cast dumb comedies, or just horrendous flops like Blue and Zinda. I have to wonder, as I do with many actresses and actors who just can't seem to catch a break no matter how much I personally enjoy them on-screen, what gives? Is she just not an actress good enough to be seriously considered for more substantial roles? Is she unpopular in B-town? Or is she, now that she's married, just actively cutting down work to focus on raising a family? Does she just enjoy making big cast dumb comedies where she forms a mere fraction of the insanity?

I haven't got the slightest clue, but the point is, I like her. And I really wish she was in more things I actually wanted to watch. But if she's moving to family life (and seems to get replaced by younger actresses, because that's sadly the way the world works...), I of course respect that choice, but can't help but feel a little annoyed. Something about her choices in films makes me feel like she never got her fair due.


Filmi Girl said...

UGH! I loathe Lara Dutta...

In my opinion, she and Priyanka have the same god-awful non-acting skills that involve giggling and wearing smalls skirts in "comedy films" and then trying too hard in other films.

Filmbuff said...

Veracious - u right Lara Dutta never got her fair due in terms of roles. She is a good actress. There was a movie with Salman and govinda - forgetting the name where she is a smart single mom - she did quite well. She was good in Delhi Chalo too. She has talent but unfortunately that has never been utlised in the right way - hindi film industry does tend to either ignore or waste talent. I find Priyanka plastic and it is amazing she keeps getting these kind of roles where as Lara Dutta is ignored.

Mette said...

I also like Lara Dutta, especially from interviews and when she gets the right role, you can see that she's a wonderful actress (Billu, Chalo Dilli...).
My first movie with her was Kaal, so naturally I didn't really notice her before seeing her in some better roles.

Love these series, by the way!

veracious said...

FG - I hate PC but like Lara.. Like I said in the post, not sure why. She's always been likable to me. And gorgeous!

Filmbuff - Yeah, I wish Lara had deglammed for some really meaty drama role, or been cast by Vishal Bhardwaj to show her talent. I share your distaste for PC.. she's plastic to me, too.

Mette - Thanks! I enjoy blabbering about favourites, and also hearing how they're not everybody's favourites.. :)