Anurag Kashyap’s Bombay Velvet, specifically Anushka Sharma’s character, Rosie Noronha, is a tribute to Lorna Cordeiro, the Konkani jazz singer, who ruled Bombay’s club scene in the ’60s, crooning her way into many a heart at evenings at Venus. But Kashyap is not the only one to pay a cinematic homage to Lorna. Far from the hullabaloo and impassioned row elicited by Kashyap’s failed/flawed epic, a small, modest Konkani film also trains the camera (rather more acutely at that) on Lorna’s tumultuous life. Nachom-Ia Kumpasar (‘Let’s Dance To The Rhythm’) fictionalises her tragic love for the famous saxophonist, trumpet player and musician Chris Perry. The two may have got renamed Donna Pereira and Lawrence Vaz for this screen version, but to their fanatical fans, divided in their loyalty and sympathy for the duo, the real-reel connect is not too hard to spot.
It is impossible not to notice the similarities between the films. They are like parallel narratives in the same universe: the same period and setting—’60s Bombay—and, most of all, all that jazz for the soundtrack. But in its impact, the Rs 4 crore indie, clearly outdoes the Rs 100 crore biggie.