Sunday, April 27, 2014

A little tribute to one of Bollywood's finest

KAJOL

Okay, this one is a bit of a stretch since there's over a billion people around the globe who are well aware of this fine actress's considerable talents. However, Kajol remains an example of the kinds of acting talent that lie outside English language (not to mention, Western) cine-sphere.

While Hollywood (and any heterosexual man with a pulse) swoons over her contemporary Aishwarya Rai, Kajol remains under the radar.

A pity, since Kajol's range and gravitas would give the Winslets and Streeps (yes!) a serious run for their money. 

One of the most talented actresses to emerge from Bollywood in the Nineties, Kajol is best known for her pairings with superstar Shahrukh Khan, and their collective chemistry is always a joy to behold (and really helps during the really, really long song-and-dance numbers).

While most Bollywood films are weighed down by sentiment and melodramatic plotting (not to mention 3 hour running times and 6-12 song-and-dance numbers...), Kajol is the rare talent that can bring a film back to some semblance of (movie) reality.

With decent comic timing and a penchant for the zany, she is also a pretty good comedienne, as shown by her performance in KUCH KUCH HOTA HAI (1998), in which she comes close to channelling the spirit of screwball queen Carol Lombard (another fine talent awaiting rediscovery!). 

A character actress blessed with a movie star's looks, Kajol has played everything from villainous femmes to romantic heroines (check out her award-winning work as a blind lover in 2006's FANAA). 

She's also rather unique in India for not constantly working (a trait generally unheard of in Bollywood), choosing to spend time with her family while choosing roles that will stretch her talents. 

Still only in her thirties, Kajol is an exciting talent who continues to grow and develop as one of the world's most popular and respected thespians. 

Am I smitten? Of course, but my personal endorsement aside, take a look and you'll soon be convinced that Kajol is the real deal.

Original post 6-8-2010