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Movie Review: Fashion

Date: 10/30/2008
The reason why FASHION works is because Madhur Bhandarkar brings alive everything you've read in newspapers or watched on TV as an outsider, to the big screen.

Fahion PriyankaFashion begins in Chandigarh, where aspiring model Meghna Mathur (Priyanka Chopra) expresses her wish to go to Mumbai and pursue her dream of becoming a supermodel. While her dad (Raj Babbar) outrightly denies her permission, her mom (Kiran Juneja) is supportive. Against her dad's wishes, Meghna leaves her house with dreams in her eyes to strike it big in the modeling world. But it is not a path of roses for her. She experiences some major difficulties in her initial days in Mumbai auditioning various times but getting rejected. But she gets a good helping hand with an old acquaintance, Rohit (Ashwin Mushran) an aspiring gay designer who assists big shot gay designer Rahul Arora (Sameer Soni). She keeps bumping into another struggling model, Maanav (Arjan) while making the rounds of modeling agencies for auditions.

She visits Rahul's fashion show where she comes face-to-face with reality of the major people in the industry. She is mocked by the show choreographer Christine and is advised to visit hot-shot photographer Kartik (Rohit Roy) for her portfolio. To pay Kartik's high fee she attends functions and even shoots for a lingerie advertisement, all the while being mentored by another smalltime model Janet (Mugdha Godse). Meghna becomes good friends with Maanav and even starts sharing his apartment after she faces accommodation problems. Meanwhile Meghna continues to strive, modeling for various designers as a side-by, all the while, aspiring to be as successful as supermodel Shonali Gujral (Kangana Ranaut). Meghna gets noticed by a top official Anisha Roy (Kitu Gidwani) of a major modeling agency Panache who brings her to her boss, Abhijit Sarin’s (Arbaaz Khan) notice. Abhijit gets impressed by her ambitious nature and go getter attitude. Panache’s face is Shonali but though very successful, her drug abuse starts becoming a problem for her and subsequently for Panache. Abhijit decides to terminate Shonali’s contract and ropes in Meghna to replace Shonali as Panache's new face.

Meghna becomes an overnight success and is everywhere – right from being the showstopper at the biggest fashion shows in town to fashion magazine covers to print ads to TV commercials. The overnight success spoils Meghna and the budding love relationship between her and Manav also comes to an abrupt end. Meanwhile, Janet, an old time acquaintance of Rahul, grabs an opportunity of being his show-stopper. Rahul gets worried as his mother becomes increasingly doubting his sexual orientation and asks Janet to marry him though he tells that his relation with his boyfriend will only be compromised to some extent. Shonali, on other hand, gets a wordrobe malfunction at an event and her career comes to an end. Her drug abuse gets worse and she lands up at a rehab centre. Meanwhile, Meghna gets pregnant with Abhijit's child and reluctantly has an abortion due to the conditions in the contract earlier added by Abhijit himself. She tells about their relation to Abhijit's wife and Abhijit terminates Meghna contract with Panache.

Angered Meghna too resorts to alcohol to relieve herself. She gets into a verbal fight with Janet and on the same night attends a rave party where under influence of cocaine, she unknowingly ends up in bed with a black male escort. Later when she comes to her senses she feels guilty of her act and leaves Mumbai forever to return to her parents in Chandigarh.

fashionBroken and depressed Meghna lives in Chandigarh for more than an year but she has lost all taste for life. Her problem is that she has lost he self-confidence, encouraged by her father, she goes back to Mumbai. There she again befriends Janet and models for Rohit's show. However, she freezes on stage and gets negative reviews from the whole industry and media. She visits Manav to ask forgiveness and gets to new that he is engaged. Shonali is shown on TV as a highly disturbed alcoholic on the streets. Meghna brings her to home and takes it as a challenge to rehabilitate Shonali. She also gets an offer from Rahul to be his show-stopper but refuses only to accept it later when Shonali encourages her. One day before the show Shonali goes missing from Meghna's home. Just before Meghna was to walk on ramp, she gets a call from the police that Shonali has been found dead apparently by a drug overdose. Meghna becomes frigid with sadness and unable to walk the ramp. But she overcomes her grief to walk on the ramp. Thereafter, she is shown broken down to tears onstage in front of the media.

Her career takes a new flight again and she achieves a new pinnacle of success. The movie ends with Meghna shown walking the ramp in Paris. Priyanka Chopra and Kangana Ranaut do commendable jobs. Priyanka’s emotions on her face loot your hearts. She is brilliant and a classy actress. Kangana leaves no stone unturned with her heart-hitting performance. Mughda Godse is truly the wonderful discovery of this year. Kitu Gidwani, Samir Soni, Raj Babbar and Harsh Chaya in a role of gay designer impress the most.

On the whole, Fashion is a classy venture with innovative subject, brilliant performances and superb direction.


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