Rowdy Ram….Gopal Varma should stop apologizing. Department ain’t bad.

Thumbs down for all the critics who panned it. I should know better by now and not listening to critics. Is it because I am watching Bollywood movies from a Western perspective, or because I am weird, but I LOVED Department!

It’s a  department from your typical  good-cop bad-cop, corrupt politician, or in this case, gangster-turned-politician,  feuding-dons-narrative. Partly because the camera angles force you out of your comfort zone and turn everything upside down in unison with the characters who switch continuously in their loyalties.  At the end you are visually and mentally puzzled and can’t tell right from wrong anymore yourself. As the characters keep emphasizing, only situations keep fluctuating in terms of right or wrong. Illegally legal or legally illegal?   Unfortunately there is a component of a disturbingly wishful thinking  here, why not create a system that allows us to kill off all the bad guys without giving them legal recourse, in a Gestapo death squad fashion. It also shows you how complicated it could get.

I usually fall asleep during these kind of movies, but Department had me up and interested in the progression of the story from the first to the last moment. Big B as Sarjerao and Sanjay Dutt, as police officer Mahadev, were just marvelous to watch in action, how they can bring to life complex characters with such ease. I also enoyed Rana Daggubati’s performance in his transformation from good, brave and honest cop to kiss my derriere.

Ram Gopal Varma was lucky Sunny Leone pulled out.  Nathalia Kaur was sensationally hot. She was ON FIRE! an erupting volcano of sensuality. junglee wild. Her item number was breath-taking.  The other songs fell flat. Even though I enjoyed watching Amitabh swinging his leg…:-)

Abhimanyu Singh as  DK and Madhu Shalini as Naseer were miscast.  Naseer wasn’t sociopathic enough.  Kalki Koechlin would have been a better choice for that role.

Vijay Raaz as Sawatya, the don who keeps losing clout, was an asset.  some memorable camera shots and light.

I loved the queer cinematography, the exaggerations of the fight scenes. It all added up to be wildly entertaining. from foot fetish to tea-cup fetishism, the unbalanced and shaky camera. I thought it was all very original. I truly enjoyed the movie. And I BET cinematographers will use those ideas and maybe integrate them with more finesse perhaps, but they should take notice and integrate some of these concepts in movies of this genre.

Bombay theater in Flushing had actually a fairly nice showing. Of course 99% were men. I was surprised after these terrible reviews to see anybody show up.

I  have one dumb question though for those bravehearts, who actually watched the movie:  I don’t know if it  might have been lost in translation or set up intentionally, but Who was  Mohammed Gauri in all of this. Did I miss the most important point or could this have been

A tool for setting up a possible sequel?


When police officer Mahadev Bhosale (Sanjay Dutt) is asked by his bosses to form a hit squad to take on the Mumbai underworld, he recruits Shiv Narayan (Rana Daggubati), an honest and brave police officer who had been suspended for an encounter killing.

Together, Mahadev, Shiv and others in the ‘Department’ take on Sawatya’s (Vijay Raaz) gang. Sawatya, in spite of many exhortations by his number two, D.K. (Abhimanyu Shekhar Singh), and D.K.’s feisty girlfriend, Naseer (Madhu Shalini), does not hit back at the police.

There is another rival gang, lead by one Mohammad Gauri.

There is also the gangster-turned-minister, Sarjerao Gaikwad (Amitabh Bachchan), who takes Shiv under his wing after Shiv saves his life at a public rally. Mahadev warns Shiv that Sarjerao is just using him. After a certain turn of events, it is exposed that Mahadev is actually working for Mohammad Gauri and is, at the ganglord’s behest, finishing off Sawatya’s gang.

While Shiv declines to be a part of Mahadev’s corrupt world, and Mahadev agrees to let him be, things start falling apart between the mentor and the apprentice when Shiv starts taking on a sub-gang formed by D.K., under Mahadev’s protection.



A lot of people hated it, some liked it, me for example. Unfortunately it did very poorly at the box office. Sorry, RGV. not only did it cost you professional friendships, but it looks like it’s going to be a huge financial loss. For the time being.

I can imagine though that people will warm up to it eventually. The performances were really good and it was a hell of a funny movie. :-)


MUMBAI: As reported by, amongst major films, Ram Gopal Varma’s ‘Department’ had replaced Venus’ ‘Tezz’, as the lowest opener of 2012 with first day collections of approximately Rs 25 million ( Rs 2.5 crore) net.

The first week collections showed no improvement. For a film opening in more than 1500 screens, ‘Department’ has seen the lowest first week collections. The total first week collections are in the range of Rs 115 million (Rs 11.50 crore) net.

Making matters worse, the second week has begun on an extremely poor note. On the 8th day, there has been a fall in collections of close to 95%.



Department ( in my heart ) for Big B

I wouldn’t be  half that excited about Department (where, I am sure, blood will flow abundantly) if it wasn’t for seeing Amitabh Bachchan again on screen, very much alive and hopping. After his health scare I am grateful for every movie we  get with him. He is still the heart and soul of Bollywood. He is living what he is preaching in his movies. He is a role model and I love him.


As it often is the case with living legends like Amitabh, his true worth and what he means to the industry and India at large will only be fully understood and recognized when the day nears, godforbid, that he will leave the stage. so I make it a point for myself to fully appreciate him now!

The film stars besides Amitabh Bachchan, Sanjay Dutt and Rana Daggubati in lead roles. Directed by Ram Gopal Varma