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Popular online column The Vigil Idiot gets booked

What: Bollywood gives us a lot to love, hate and laugh about. It’s the latter two that ‘stick-figure professional’ Sahil Rizwan loves to write and draw about.

Rizwan’s take on the popular power of attorney ruse used in Shahrukh Khan’s thriller hit, Baazigar. Pics courtesy/Sahil Rizwan & Harpercollins

Rizwan’s take on the popular power of attorney ruse used in Shahrukh Khan’s thriller hit, Baazigar. Pics courtesy/Sahil Rizwan & Harpercollins

Rizwan became an Internet hit with his column, The Vigil Idiot, where he reviewed films through the mode of stick figures. Rizwan has now compiled 42 reviews of some of the most ridiculous films of the 1990s for his book, 42 Lessons I Learnt From Bollywood.

An honest doctor takes his love for his profession a bit too far in Mr Bechara
An honest doctor takes his love for his profession a bit too far in Mr Bechara

How: As usual, Rizwan manages to raise quite a few guffaws by making a mockery of films such as Biwi no 1, Mr Bechara, and a few cult films such as Kuch Kuch Hota Hai and Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge.

An angelic Rani Mukerji guides her 8-year-old daughter to find a mother in Kuch Kuch Hota Hai
An angelic Rani Mukerji guides her 8-year-old daughter to find a mother in Kuch Kuch Hota Hai

So accurate are his reviews that we actually had to go back to the films to get ourselves to believe that those plots were for real. Each review is followed by a ‘lesson’. One such gem: ‘Sometimes, even your pets can be smarter than the adults around you. If you live in a Bollywood movie, however, they’re ALWAYS popular’ for Hum Aapke Hai Koun...!

One of India’s most popular love stories, Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge’s fallacy
One of India’s most popular love stories, Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge’s fallacy

Our favourite bits are the introductions to each film, where Rizwan connects ’90s school-era souvenirs such as Tazos, China ink pens and MTV to why a film is bad. Though some reviews seem rushed, the book manages to continue our love for Rizwan’s size-minus figures; we hope he creates another gem for films from the 2000s.

Where: 42 Lessons I Learnt From Bollywood, Sahil Rizwan, HarperCollins, 599. Available at leading bookstores.

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