Let’s not mince words. Jacqueline Fernandez is a very beautiful girl with a gorgeous figure. But dammit, she is no Madhuri Dixit! When Ms Dixit danced, the world stood still, and not just to stare but also to wonder as to how such graceful movements could flow out of such diminutive limbs. Ek Do teen in Tezaab is the ultimate iconic ‘item’ number . It oozes the elixir of enchantment, the mojo of masti.
Cut to Jacqueline Fernandez’s version in Baaghi 2. She is dressed like Madhuri was in the original song, though the costume, as expected, is a lot skimpier. But that’s about it. There is none of Madhuri’s bridled come-hither-ness in Jacqueline’s all-out act of seduction. Alarmingly, the new version of Ek do teen has added a whistle to the dancer’s treasure-trove of titillation. It sounds disturbingly like a clarion call for the male gaze to fall lustfully on the dancer. The choreography and the male chorus line-up are brutally blatant in displaying the primeval instinct. While the original Madhuri song was a covert invitation duction, this is an all-out red carpet welcome to a mating game.
This is perhaps the millennial Ek do teen. Raunchy robust and glamorised to a brimming point. The dancer comes on stage, slips off the jacket on top of her skimpy dancing outfit (the outfit changes at least three times in the 2-minute video) and launches into a convulsive jig. Ek do teen as per choreographer Ganesh Acharya, looks too eager to please, too committed to renewing the seductive promise that Madhuri’s Mohini in Tezaab made to a generation of open-mouthed drooling admirers 30 years ago. But the moves do not have Madhuri’s fluid grace. The actress has been quoted as saying, “We are honestly here as big fans of their (Madhuri and Saroj Khan’s) work and more than anything, this is honestly a tribute to the amazing, iconic number that they gave to us. For me as an actress, this is such an honour and a lot of my actress friends were like, ‘we are so jealous that you are doing ‘Ek do teen’. So for any girl, this would be a dream song to do.”
Sure, an honour for any 7-year old wannabe dancing-Dixit jiving for her father’s friends at a birthday party. No dancer-actress would seriously try to do Madhubala’s Mohe panghat pe or Sridevi’s Hawa hawaai unless it’s Deepika Padukone doing a derivative homage to the former in Bajirao Mastani or Vidya Balan just freaking out with her friends to the sound of the latter.
But a replica of Ek do teen? Can’t be serious!