This isn’t a review. No spoilers, I promise.If you are going to see this movie, there are a few things you should remember. It is 90-something minutes and there is no interval. The multiplexes can’t charge anything below Rs.100 for a new movie and you are bound to feel cheated if you paid that much, got in at 10:30 and out by 12 noon. So the screens will show you 25 minutes of trailers. And you sit there and you watch the trailers wondering why you paid for this (I was thinking I could’ve had a bath instead of rushing to Cinemax in my pajamas). Anyway, Dhobi Ghat draws first blood, if unintentionally: paid advertising gets a whole new meaning. I am happy that this film was made because it is very bold. It is not conventional. And by unconventional I don’t mean the usual Aamir-Khan-unconventional. It is beyond even that. As anyone who hasn’t been living under a rock knows by now, it is the story of four very different people in Bombay. The title has (mumbai diaries) in its name for a reason. These stories are not followed start through to finish. They are snatches of lives lived anonymously in the Big city. Thus, don’t expect a strict storyline; there is none. Two points to Dhobi Ghat. There were two pieces that immediately came to my mind when I started seeing the film. Altaf Tyrewala’s 2005 debut novel No God in Sight. The link leads to a review I did long back and it is uncanny how well parts of that review fit this movie. It has a similar premise and attempts to sketch Bombay without ever touching it directly. Second piece: Dibakar Banerjee’s 2010 film Love, Sex aur Dhokha for the rustic camera work that Dhobi Ghat opens with. Now, the issues: one of the four leads is badly cast and it shows. Her narration is protracted, unnatural and mundane. Coming in close at second is the other female lead who is only a shade better than the first. Prateik (should I call him Babbar?) does the best job for me. Aamir Khan is half here, half there. Minus one. The biggest concern maybe that most cinema halls/multiplexes don’t provide an atmosphere conducive to appreciating the movie. It is alternate, we’ve established that. So if people start laughing at beautifully composed black-&-white frames because the people in it are simple looking, non-glamorous hawkers it can get pissing off. Your average Joe comes to the cinema with his girl and neither of them are there for cinematic appreciation. He’s looking to drop wise-cracks to make her laugh. She’s (probably) there to humour him. So you get laughter where none is asked for. Kills it. Endgame: If you like parallel films, try and catch a late night show when the crowd is thinnest. I won’t call it genius, but it’s good to see such things being made. It’s a start. If you are in no rush wait for a good DVDrip (if you are into downloading) or buy the thing when it comes out. Get good headphones and watch at peace.