We have been making films for close to a hundred years now and not before 2009 did any film bring us what it means to be a part of the dream world that is the Bollywood.
A film that could explain the nuances of film making, being a part of the failures and facing defeat, and if at all lucky, emerging out victorious. The journey from a struggling artist to a failure/star was never shown on television with such intelligence before. Luck By Chance changes that all. A film that is, well, about films! It makes being a part of the growth and progress in Hindi Film Industry quite relatable. As if one himself undergoes an act of enactment and finds all the speed breakers, zig zags and roadblocks towards the ultimate goal of stardom (if any).
The film shows a film school which is kind of set in a regional space. People who cannot crack the cream of NSDs and FTIIs but are still adamant in proving their worth to the little world they live in – justifying every bit of effort being put. We get to see Saurabh Shukla – as his fictional version, teaching Farhan among others, the delicacies of acting. The sweetness of this film is its ability to be as close to reality as possible. Shukla brings Mac Mohan to the fore and asks exactly what one expects him to do: deliver that famous dialogue from Sholay. Such is the beauty of this film that it doesn’t get lost in pretending and respecting a veteran. It instead makes us face the harsh truth of life in the film industry. That you can only be remembered for good for as long as you are relevant. If not, you just get obscured in the dust of other actors making their way through, delivering that single dialogue that made you what you are today. “Poore Pachhas Hajaar” he says with pain in his eyes while you couldn’t help but feel bad for the sorry state of the industry.
Another aspect that holds quite an importance when it comes to acting is Theatre. The film smartly makes sure to feed it to its audience that it is indeed Theatre that will “keep the actor in you alive”. Barely making it the sole driver on the protagonist’s journey towards being a Star though! That’s the reality too!
Nepotism vs Talent
Farhan is an outsider in the film and hence, the hardships he goes through is quite realistic. Producers (Ronnie Rolly, Rishi Kapoor, brilliant) want to cast known faces and it is not without sheer luck can an outsider dent his place in this overcrowded mess we call Bollywood. As the film progresses, Farhan manoeuvres shrewdly and with a pinch of luck, finds himself in the lead actor’s seat which was supposed to be done by Hritik Roshan (who plays Zafar Khan, a superstar).
The film stupendously replicates the false impression these big and new production houses make of keeping script (“property”) a top priority and casting as required. Once the ball drops, these so called execs suck faces and drag themselves towards the age old traditional ways of making films – relying on big names!
Rishi Kapoor begs, borrows and steals but fails to cast a “known” face in his film. Whats another masterpiece here is top actors making excuses and denying roles. This piece could not have been written had Zoya not been an integral part of the film fraternity. For she knows way too much of this industry’s reality.
Farhan’s breakthrough has an opposite force in the form of Konkana’s struggle. From delving deep to become a side actor in TV Serials and hoping to get a break in films, Konkana manages to fail, steer herself towards stability and finally reminisces those once upon a time star actresses who turn to television big time as an alternative.
Luck by Chance is a film that everyone likes. The sad part though remains the fact that only a few have had the honor of doing so. We need a film like Luck By Chance but don’t deserve it.