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Gourmet films: have they started making their appearance

Enkayaar, Bollywood Trade News Network
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View Cheeni Kum Movie StillsIt would be one of the most apparent paradoxes for the country like India, which is one of the biggest foodie countries in the world, and having diversified cuisine whose list still continue to be updated, to find that there are hardly any films that could be counted as a film which has gourmet as a binding theme. CHEENI KUM has sort of broken that trend, a trend that was started by Shah Rukh Khan Starrer DUPLICATE and taken to a new height by SALAAM NAMASTE. Can then one call SALAAM NAMASTE and CHEENI KUM as the films that talk about the cuisine and glorious tradition of dietary habits of the country?

Not really. Both for SALAAM NAMASTE as also for CHEENI KUM the characters which are associated with gourmet are the characters that are seeped in the western nuances, and do not seem to convey the bon-homie associated with the Indian traditions. Were one to really scratch the surface of the barrel to find out the gourmet films, and then the effort would not yield many results, as there are only two films that could partially score on this count, they being BAWARCHI and HERO NO.1. Then the list gets exhausted.

Food as an item of tradition has been portrayed more in the sense of creation of funny tickle i.e. it is used as the trigger point to create a comic scene. The famous scene in BOMBAY TO GOA where the fat kid of Mukri whenever he sees a food being laid out generates, laughter for one or two times, but after that it becomes repetitive. It had happened in NASEEB where cake was used as a prop to generate comedy. In fact cake has been used as an invariable tool for comedy props from the Black & White era of Indian films. But a film based on Indian food tradition, which is marketed, as one of the USPs the world over still has to make a mark. Till the time Asit Sen was alive, he used to get a scene or the other, which had an association with a food item in one form or the other, but it was more in the comical sense than anything else.

When this scenario is contrasted with the films being made the world over, there is a feeling of ennui. A CHOCOLAT that was made in French and English was able to evoke the passion associated with a gourmet. Even the films made in all the major languages of the world continue to tap this category to evoke the traditions of the country.

Download Salaam Namaste WallpapersWith each of the states of the country having such a diversified cuisines, opportunities are present in plenty to tap this potential as the story line. Madhuri Dixit was probably the only star in the recent times, who was associated with two songs associated with gourmet, one being ‘Batata Wada’ and other being ‘Ek Rasgulla Kahin Phat Gayo Re’. It was the same that happened with Shah Rukh where he also sang, ‘Wah Ji Wah’ in DUPLICATE. It is altogether a different matter that songs after consuming bhang and paan are there in plenty. But for a country, where the sheer rumor of a bullet being greased with tallow of pig or cow could instigate, it indeed is surprising how cuisine and the gourmet traditions do not form a part of its oeuvre. May be, once R.Balakrishnan has shown the way with CHEENI KUM somebody else would take the cudgel and shoot a full fledged film based on dietary and culinary traditions.

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