Monthly Archives: February 2011
Every now and then comes a movie; minus the A listers, over ambitious producers, over rated directors and most importantly the baggage called “blockbuster” ! More often than not when given a chance they tend to take its viewers by surprise and word of mouth doing the trick eventually turning out to be a profitable product. Hopefully “Tanu Weds Manu” follows the same route. The reasons for my uncertainty is derived from 2 major factors. The ongoing cricket world cup and …hmm well lets come back to that later.
First off its a an exceptional treatment of a rather beaten to death story. Dorky (good) boy falls for smart ass (bad) girl. Dorky good boy’s character highlights are honesty, persistence and true emotion. Where as his counterpart smart ass girl is unmistakably inconsistent, rude, but obviously undergoes major change of heart by the final reel of the movie. This is the aspect of such productions where the writing dictates its fate. The ones that falter in it generally take the dark route to oblivion and the ones that rise above the others get tagged “sleeper hit”. If success parameter is a highway, TWM quite interestingly is the middle path over the divider, or so to speak. Some weak writing culminating to a weaker climax is the movie’s biggest downfall.
But like me if You tend to take a movie for what it is and if You are not expecting to see ground breaking cinema but have given it a chance, may it be for the case of a dinner date, the dull cricket matches on the telly or because there aren’t many good ones in the theatre anyways, the chances are YOU WILL LIKE it immensely. Just like I did. Madhavan sleep walks through the role as he’s lived with the good boy tag forever, and Kangna once again is drunk (taking a leaf out of her characters in “Gangster” n “Fashion”), with some excellent supporting cast led by ****drum rolls **** …. ****standing ovation*** Deepak Dobriyal playing the effervescent but real “Pappi”. Claiming he stole the majority of the show would be an understatement. He was that good. In the times of brainless and painful attempts of directors like Rohit Shetty and sometimes Priyadarshan, this role is a stand out achievement. If there were any doubts after his terrific portrayal of a henchmen to Langda Tyagi in VB’s “Omkara”, this should cement his place as one of the great character actors of contemporary hindi cinema. He should choose his future roles carefully lest he becomes the next Paresh Rawal or even worse Boman Irani. Age however is on his side but he should use it as an advantage rather than an excuse for making mistakes. Well now that I am done with Deepak (as his own personal career guide), Ejaz Khan playing Jassi is another lovable role of the movie. Jimmy Shergill sucked. Someone remind him changing last names don’t help anymore.
Above all of it, stands the soundtrack of the movie, which according to me is the year’s best yet (I know its only the 2nd month but do You know how many movies have released so far ???) This one has it all; a soulful romantic melody by Mohit, a couple of excellent foot tappers and some amazing supporting and background score. And if that aint enough, Asha Bhonsle’s “Kajra Mohabbat Wala” from yesteryears has a complete sequence picturised on it and I think Kangna was marvelous in it There is something completely unassuming about this girl and She invariably hits the right notes in this one. But sometimes a very poorly written character.
Well overall ; its an extremely enjoyable watch, considering You do not walk in expecting the world from it.
Vishal Bhardwaj for me is slowly but surely emerging as a brand in itself. A brand that provides me the much sought after respite from the so called art house and mainstream commercial fixtures, the width of the glaring gap of which is widening these days. “Omkara” I believe has been his most accomplished effort in terms of both production and storytelling perspectives. It’s common knowledge now that he excels in adaptations. Macbeth, Othello & Blue Umbrella (by the same author) can be cited as some brilliant examples. After venturing into original storytelling in the form of the s0-so “Kaminey” where I think he managed to exploit Shahid Kapur’s acting prowess the best so far, he lost more than he gained through the product. Which is why it’s a delight to have him back in his adaptive best.
First things first. “7 Khoon Maaf” just like all his earlier work, is an immensely ambitious project. Adapting a short story no less Ruskin Bond’s. Good news is that it impresses in reference to aspects we have not come to expect from a hindi movie. But then just like a beautiful winding road with surprise pot holes and speed bumps, the movie ends up with some glaring goof ups, eventually smashing into a concrete wall, so to speak. What “7KM” achieves in mood and stand out acting of a stellar cast led by Priyanka Chopra, it suffers from a let down of aesthetics. For more reasons than one this one is a movie of 2 halves. The first being one of the finest pieces of cinema and the second a huge letdown with the meekest of endings. It would be unfair to draw any comparisons with the book as I have not read the story yet. But going by reputation if “7KM” was a book, Ruskin Bond or Vishal Bhardwaj himself for that matter would not have attempted its adaptation into a screenplay.
The biggest positives of the movie however are Priyanka Chopra (her career’s best written and enacted role yet), Annu Kapoor, the song “Darlinggg” and some impressive cameos esp. by the man who played “Goonga”.
Some unimaginable low points were John Abraham’s impersonation of a kilt wearing Axl Rose or mostly an unbearable caricature of the same, inconsistency in Priyanka’s make up and overall look considering its a story that spreads over a long span of time, shabby editing esp. in its climax, and an oddly written role of the narrator.
In a nutshell, for me the movie would have been a masterclass if it was just “4 Khoon Maaf” instead of “7″ !!!
Recommended only if You’re looking for something hatke rather than pure substance. Barely 6 / 10
After an incredibly inexplicable wait, “Black Swan” finally saw the light of the day here in Malaysian theaters and I could not have missed it for the world. As a religion, I queued up infront of the Box Office, where I represented the first patron of the day and the theater barely 1/3rd filled, made it to the first show on a Saturday morning. With the large portion of the next 2 hours spent at the awe of what I experienced, I could finally sum up the pieces of my blown out mind as I sit to write this piece.
3 specific names associated with the premise meant; it tagged along itself the rather heavyweight of all downers some like to call “expectations”. French film giant Vincent Cassel, Natalie Portman and Darren Aaronofsky who most recently was celebrated for his violent yet heart breaking projection and Mickey Rourke’s comeback vehicle “The Wrestler”. Add to that 5 Oscar noms, 3 of which are for Best Leading Actress (Portman), Best Picture and Best Director and You have Yourself a list of sorts, that pretty much dictates to You why You should spend a well earned weekend morning inside the theaters.
Well the long anticipation that was often punctuated with unjustified hype finally ended with India (pipping hot favourites ???) taking on the host nation Bangladesh (the craziest fan following) yesterday. & Yes we did win it by a modest margin of 87 runs, considering a chase of 371.But we’ll take it anyhow. Some called it “revenge of 2007″ when we stepped on the banana skin opener and never managed to come back into the Caribbean’s long winding and boring edition of the same. The positives obviously were Sehwag’s murderous attitude scoring 175 with his Ranji team mate Kohli providing adequate support for his 100 (N.O.) and Munaf Patel who I think is arguably the best comeback kid in the team and enjoying his purple patch. As for Viru’s knock it was befitting his initial plans of playing a long innings in the tourny. Low-points or negatives would be Sreesanth’s spell (not for the first time) and the horrendous idea of using glaring highlights on Zaheer’s head (find me the one behind this please).
But for me the one factor that did not go down well even before a ball was bowled was the team selection. Keeping specialist spinners Chawla & Ashwin out by picking a 3rd seamer in Sreesanth who would not have made it to fixture if not for PK’s untimely injury, was baffling. Especially for the notoriously low n flat dust bowls like the one in Mirpur.
So moving forward with a convincing WIN in our pockets, such blasphemy of strategy should be avoided. We face England in Bangalore for the next with a 9 days (yawn….) gap in between. Hope Dhoni rests his brain n limbs well coz such audacious and glaring mistakes could mean staring down the barrel against mightier opponents !!!