Fascinated with the extraordinary soundtrack to Life in a...Metro (Metro), I finally saw the film over the weekend. Few movies leave one this dumbfounded. In good and bad ways. I am usually very quick to offer my two cents on movies, but this one leaves me unsure. Maybe that was its purpose?
The problem with Metro is not that its characters lack character in the story. That is in fact the premise of the story, which works. The cast are excellent with individual performances - Irrfan Khan (remember Chocolate?), Sharman Joshi (Rang De Basanti, of course!), Shilpa Shetty, Kangana Ranaut (Gangster), Kay Kay Menon, Shiny Ahuja. The list goes on. Add to this a kick-butt soundtrack, and you have the makings of a great film.
Well, not quite, in this case. Or so I thought. The idea to have these sub-plots running in parallel is glorified at the end when people and stories connect. But the abruptness with which the stories end leaves one feeling that some of the characters and love affairs portrayed deserved better endings. Feel free to disagree, but Metro, for me, left a lot to be desired.
However, kudos for the soundtrack. Not as portrayed in the film. The soundtrack release, though, is fantastic, largely due to K.K. the singer. Alvida and O Meri Jaan have to be among the top 10 songs of the year for sure. Rocking to the soundtrack makes for perfect listening if you are in an urban setting and traveling afoot amid chaos that is the mark of a real metro. Trust me. It works :)
Classification: Rated R for plot. You do not want your kids around for this one.
Watch it if: want to see a classic example of an orchestra without a conductor.