Monthly Archives: December 2011
In all fairness Don 2 didn’t generate as much pre release hype as its 2006 predecessor which was a remake of the 70′s Amitabh Bachchan’s stardom vehicle. A couple of twists at the end of the remake meant a sequel was in the cards and here we are with Don 2. A Christmas release aimed at raking tons of money for the producers and distributors alike. Here’s my take on the movie.
THE GOOD : Farhan Akhtar the writer, has out done himself with the principal story by keeping the turn of events believable without compromising with the surprise and oomph factor. Its a task easier criticized than accomplished. Some of the combat action sequences are tastefully choreographed, which is a far cry from the what we have come to expect thanks largely to a handful of non visionary directors who still make potboilers aimed largely at the masses and very successfully so. Over all the general action of the movie is definitely a huge positive. The 3rd act of the story and the pulsating climax makes it one of the better action thrillers to have come out of Bollywood recently. Nawab Shah the actor and his role. Although a few more lines added could have brought the house down. The dialogues were fresh and apt that complimented the mood, sometimes elevating it to higher grounds. Shahrukh although not restrained by any means has been made to cut down on a few histrionics which makes the title role not only consistent but bearable. Priyanka looked good with some great moments (esp. an action sequence that I really liked).
THE BAD : The end of the 1st act and the entire 2nd act of the narration in total are not cohesive and that takes away browny points from Farhan Akhtar, the director’s score sheet. The soundtrack is very poor and there is no 2 ways about that. Lackluster honestly just doesnt cut it. Then comes Om Puri’s character. With proceedings of a feverish pace, his role looked forced and odd without any contribution to the eventual product. This is also considering the stature of the artist and the potential he brings along. Lara Dutta’s role didnt have anything to do. Hopefully there is something in store in the 3rd edition and hence the continuity as She is a replacement of Isha Kopikar’s (cannot stand that girl) role.
THE SO SO : I can only imagine the title song was left in the screenplay keeping the “aam-junta” in mind, who will just not accept a song-less Shahrukh Khan starrer. My gripe however is that, it tends to put brakes on an already slow moving narrative of the 1st half. SRK as projected – the deadly DON, looked odd for lip synching (a 1st ever). Could have been used as an apt background score making subtle entries at various junctures instead. Boman Irani and Kunaal Kapoor are both effective.
Overall in Don 2, the makers invested plenty of effort into its prospective strengths and did not go all out to become a path breaker by focussing on areas that may or may not have mattered at the end of the day . The story was given precedence over senseless action sequences of cars being blown out of no where. Which by the way is a recent Bollywood fad. That I think is the biggest plus point of this holiday release. Add to that fervour, a tasty climax that gives away the prospect of a 2rd sequel to the original story. If handled well (which I trust and expect Farhan to do), it could very well be the original DON trilogy for keeps.
FINAL WORD : Recommended. 4/5
Enjoy the trailer :
Apart from the hard bouncy wickets, a boisterous lager induced crowd, its also the beginning of Summer in Australia. So in an attempt to get acclimatised to such starkly different conditions, some members of the Indian test squad reached the shores down under, a couple of days back. The contingent comprising of Sachin Tendulkar, Rahul Dravid, VVS Laxman, Ishant Sharma, Umesh Yadav, Wriddhiman Saha and Pragyan Ojha feature in this fan captured video as they come out of the arrival hall of the Melbourne Airport. The MCG as its customary, will host the first test of the series which is famously referred to as “The Boxing Day Test”.
For the spectators in the ground a 100,000 of them and the millions around the globe that follow the sport, this is an event that is anticipated and followed very closely. The fact that India are the visitors this time only adds on to that festive fervour. Expect to see a sea of Santa hats and if there is one piece of living room Christmas decor You fancy on Yourself, there is likelihood that You may catch someone adorning it on the telly. In all fairness its a sight to see and having witnessed it for decades waking up in the wee hours of cold boxing day mornings in India, I hope someday I will experience it first hand.
I plan to follow every ball of the series and have some serious plans in reference to that. But for now, the images that are flooding my mind dates back to some 10 – 15 years back where I’d be the first in the family to wake up in the morning, all wrapped in woolens and lousy socks grabbing a hot beverage, giving in to hysteria of a wild capacity crowd enjoying a warm sunny summer morning some 7000 kms away, on the telly. The MCG incidentally is the not most sporting of wickets, but the feverish hysteria surrounding the match is always one of the most anticipated events of the year. Be sure to subscribe to it, if You’re in Malaysia (see I need to pay for such necessities).
All the best to India for the match and the series. Here is the link for all the info about the series.
(More serious posts covering the series to follow, under Cricket)
Video Courtesy : http://www.cricketcountry.com
Even to a generation that only thrives on wafer thin novels and swears by 15 second commercials, Dev Anand’s a name synonymous to agelessness. Its almost unbelievable that he is no more, having passed away on the 4th of December 2011, in London. He was 88 and most likely died in his sleep. My earliest memory of the man called “The Adonis Of Indian Cinema”, was a B&W poster I spotted in an Archies Gallery in my home town. I didn’t quite believe the picture was from the 50′s nor could imagine Indian men could look so good. Well some of his work that I have watched since speaks out aloud that he was far more, beyond a pretty face. As such, “C.I.D.” , “Hum Dono”, “Guide“, “Jewel Thief”, Johny Mera Naam” & “Hare Rama Hare Krishna” stand out from a body of extensive work that lasted 6 decades. Yeah 6 decades.
Among a hoard of tributes from a wide spectrum of dignitaries, his nephew’s the award winning film maker Shekhar Kapur’s was an apt summary when he said “Dev Anand lived and died at his own terms. He was working one minute. Sat down and smiled. And was gone the next. So much 2 learn”.
The message rings true, more so because of the times we belong to. A mediocre piece of art can meet with thunderous acceptance through the likes of YouTube, making someone an overnight sensation awarding celebrity status and hence the possibility of coming across another one like Dev Saab is a far fetched dream not likely to be realised until perhaps another lifetime.
I leave You with a note, lip synced by the maestro himself that goes something like “Main Zindagi Ka Saath Nibhata Chala Gaya, Har Phikr Ko Dhoowein Mein Udata Chala Gaya…” (I live my life being loyal to it, blowing every worry in the smoke into the thin air…) May You be the lesson Dev Saab. You will be sorely missed