Audience v/s Ladies v/s Ricky Bahl

What better way to (re) start blogging than writing a movie review? My blogging career started with a movie review. It (re)starts with a movie review again.


Hmmm, now lets focus on LRB. What can you expect from a movie full of ‘Sharmas’? (4 Sharmas- Anushka Sharma, Dipannita Sharma, Aditi Sharma and director Maneesh Sharma and one to-be Sharma… yeah I expect Ranveer to change his name).

Frankly I loved Parineeti Chopra’s character Dimple Chadhha. And this new girl has done full justice to her role. She ads some flavor to otherwise drab movie that revolves around one conman Ranveer (Ricky B) who has duped 15 females and is still at large. Invariably none of them ever complained to Police (god knows why). But some thing happens (apparently directed by Sharma No. 1 Maneesh) and 3 of the 15 con women come together to script an indelible con against the invincible eternal conman.

Enter Sharma No. 2, (Dipannita) a full of attitude corporate secy and the mastermind of the whole con, Sharma No. 3, (Aditi) a certain coy Saira Rashid from Lucknow and the effervescent Dimple Chadhha (Parineeti Chopra). The script the con, trace their target with some intelligent analysis and then decide to attack. But how? So enter Sharma No. 4, Anushka as Ishika Desai. They decide to use her as a pawn to kill the king con. Rest, as they say, will be history in no time.

Movie is interesting in the first half. But sadly it just skids through in the second as against other movies which tend to drag. The three ladies come out as a winner, not only in the movie but also as performers. They, I guess, have the meatiest role despite the movie focusing solely on Ranveer.

The impressionist Raveer Singh is pleasing to the eye. But if I may compare, his con acts are no match to Dhoom 2‘s Hritik. Other wise, he is growing pretty well. I can already see a ‘Shah Rukh Khan‘ in the making. ūüôā

Anushka, on the other hand, is pathetic. Not her fault though, the role is such. I wonder what made her accept it. Ranveer love os Maneesh’s surname? All in all, the movie is a one time watch if you like light movies and love Ranveer or Anushka. Otherwise Ghost Protocol releases tomorrow and there is Don 2 coming up as well. And they are worth the wait!


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If you haven’t watched Inception yet, you might as well want to just shut this browser, pack your wallet and rush to the nearest theatre. For this movie is not to be missed… AT ALL!

What is most precious to you? Your money? Your house? Your family? Your girlfriend? I think you are being too naive if you said yes to any of those options. For some one like me who writes stories, it is my thoughts. ūüôā

So what if some one stole your thoughts? Or worse, what if some one replaced them? Ha! That makes an interesting movie plot. Chris Nolan uses an¬†interesting¬†concept straight out of the¬†subconscious¬†mind theories to create a masterpiece. Inception is all about a job where Leonardo DiCaprio is asked to plant an idea in the mind of Robert Fischer Jr., heir of world’s largest oil company (played by Cillian Murphy). What¬†unfolds¬†is a sequence of dreams and inter¬†related¬†events, which I rather not describe here.

Go watch it for yourself. Indulge!

Badmaash Company

What a new hairstyle Shahid. Anushka, you have an amazing body and a great screen presence. Meiyang Chang and Vir Das, you guys have a great chemistry and complement the screen very well. Sadly there is nothing else to write about this movie. Pathetic songs, run of the mill, tried, tested and battered plot, far to predictable outcome and even more detectable end. There is nothing to review about it. So why am I writing about this movie at all? Is it because I have a policy of reviewing really bad or really good movies? Not really! Continue reading

Movie Review: 3 Idiots

I’d personally like to thank Chetan Bhagat for the two sensible things he did since becoming ‘the popular guy’ in India amongst the youth. One, writing and converting his¬†immensely popular novel ‘5 point someone’ into a movie script and then choosing (or rather getting chosen by) Rajkumar Hirani to direct 3 Idiots. For this movie is sure to become one of the greatest hits in recent times. This movie, although having a ‘bollywoodish’ touch to it, does strike a chord deep within. I so much remembered my two other¬†favourite¬†movies in recent times, Rock On and Guru while watching the movie. No, 3 Idiots doesn’t even have a slightest of resemblance with any of the two. But like the other two, it not only makes you think, it makes you act as well. I always believed that a movie should be a work of art. It should take you on a journey of your own, within you. 3 Idiots sufficiently manages to do that.

There is a difference between getting educated and becoming knowledgeable. A dialogue in the movie says, we should learn and study to become worthy and not to become successful. Success should automatically follow. And I believe, to be a knowledgeable person, some where within you need to have that¬†rebellious attitude. An attitude that has a capacity to challenge the ‘as is’ and invent, innovate or evolve into some thing more, some thing new and some thing better. I remember during my engineering days, me and my classmate Sanjeev were struggling to get a paper presentation topic. There was a contest at IIT, Chennai and we HAD to get selected and participate. After many futile attempts at trying to learn the already presented brain heavy papers on structural engineering, we decided to do some thing on our own. We ended up presenting some thing that caught even the IITians¬†unaware, a most economical way of building the stone columns in a marshy land. Although we didn’t win, it did receive a special mention in their record books (I suppose it is still there and has been researched by now). I cant explain the surprised look on the faces of our teachers back in our college when they learnt that two guys, one with average grades (Sanjeev) and one with non-mentionable grades (me) could do this. It was that rebellious attitude to do the difference that has carried me through all these years.

Anyway, coming back to the movie. 3 Idiots is loosely based on the novel by Chetan Bhagat, 5 Point Someone. ¬†Loosely because the theme, the characters and the premise is the same but the story line has been altered a bit to suit the Bollywood audience (which is actually not so good). Unlike the novel, which revolves around 3 main characters, 3 Idiots revolves around 1 lead and 2 sub lead characters. Aamir Khan plays a guy called Rannchhoddas Shyamaldas Chanchad, a rich and¬†brilliant¬†guy, who has a central tailored role where as R. Madhavan and Sharman Joshi play Farhan Qureshi and Raju Rastogi respectively. They are all studying in Imperial College of Engineering a.k.a. IIT Delhi, headed by Dr. Viru Sahastrabuddhe (Boman Irani). The rest of the movie is about how Rannchhoddas or Ranchoo’s rebellious attitude and out of the box thinking often lands the three best friends in a soup, and as always, how every thing gets turned into a happy ending. After all, in the end ‘Aal Ij Well’. The story here bears a striking resemblance to Rajkumar Hirani’s earlier protagonist, Munnabhai MBBS. In fact, there are few sequences where you feel as if Raju has served the old wine in a new bottle. Ranchho’s altercations with the dean, his love angle with the dean’s daughter (Kareena), his overwhelming generosity, his out of the box solutions… every thing looks like ditto Munnabhai.

Coming to performances, except for the 3 Idiots and Boman Irani every one else has a short role to play, including Kareena. But all of them have done well, especially Chatur ‘Silencer’. They ensure that there is never a dull moment in the movie at all. Music by Shantanu Moitra is good. In fact ‘All is Well’ is topping the charts already. I’ll not be surprised if it has surpassed the popularity of ‘M bole to…’. If there is a healthy dose of funny moments and good songs, there are also some grey overtones where you almost feel for the characters. Raju has effectively tried to deal with the suicides and the excessive pressures of studies. The film in fact tries to give us a message, a message to follow your dreams and not some one’s¬†expectations. It may not be strong enough to challenge the ‘Doctor ya Engineer’¬†typecast society and education system in India. But it sure asks questions… in fact plenty of them. Go and watch it for sure, even if you have the answers or not…

The Review: Whats your Raashee?

whats-your-raasheeWatching the movie made me feel proud of my observation. My analysis of the Raashees is more accurate than what Ashutosh Gowarikar has shown. You dont agree? Read ¬†this –> Whats your Raashee, and then compare it with the movie.

Anyway, let us not spend too much time on the argument. Coming back to the movie, I guess you already know the story. Yogesh Bharatbhai Patel (Harman Baweja), an NRI from Chicago is called by his parents so that they can marry him. Yogesh’s family is actually going through a financial crisis. An astrologer tells them that the day Yogesh gets married, he is going to be super rich. That turns out to be true. How? Courtesy Yogesh’s maternal grand iven . But he has a wish. He will hand over every thing to Yogesh only on the day he gets married. So that is why the family wants to marry off Yogesh. While deciding on that, he bumps in to a book “Whats Your Raashee?” where he learns about the various sun signs. So he decides to meet a girl of each raashee so that he can try himself out with them and decide on whom to marry. Thats about it. The whole movie then revolves around Yogesh and his 12 prospective brides (12 beautiful Priyanka Chopras). Nice idea but sad execution.

The movie could have been more intriguing. But sadly though, it fails to strike the chord at the right moments. The biggest flaw of the movie, I would say, is in its editing. Most of the time it feels like we are watching different movie clips, one at a time. Besides not all raashees have been given equal and proper weightage. I guess Ashutosh has some favourites and some not so favourites. So ones that he likes are shown very nicely. The Capricorn female, for example, is not given any footage at all. Libra woman are methodical and practical. But they are charming too, and they smile a lot! The Sagittarius female did not come up well at all. And the Piscean was shown to be too stupid. Having said that, some of the depiction are near perfect. A Gemini is as bubbly as Kajal Thakkar, a Virgo is as caring, simple and stubborn as Pooja Goradia, A cancer is as emotional as the Hansa Parekh and a Scorpio is as exciting, sexy and passionate as Nandini. Ashutosh has also made an attempt to address some issues such as dowry, child marriage, the hate for NRIs. They gel well with the movie.

Performance¬†wise, I guess every one plays their part well. Harman though could have done better. I couldn’t stop myself from imagining Saif Ali Khan in the role. Priyanka is SUPERB! No one else could have done better. She is the life and blood of the otherwise drab movie. Rest of the characters, including Darshan Jariwala as the marriage bureau chief and Yogesh’s uncle and Anjan Shrivastava as Bharatbhai Patel, Yogesh’s fatehr have done notably well.

All and all, the movie is just a one time watch. There are some scenes that are really¬†likeable. And there are some where you feel the movie is stretched far too long. One or two songs are good, but nothing much. “Jao na” especially is hummable. ¬†May be when the VCD is out, I might want to buy it and watch only select scenes. Ashu, you could have done better!


Frankly speaking, I was very skeptical to go and watch Kaminey. That is not because of the fact that swine flu is rampant around here. But purely because of the fear to be disproved. I like the film maker in Vishal Bhardwaj. I have watched all his movies from Maachis to Blue Umbrella and none of them only once. But all of the movies either were made to show cast a purpose or pure adaptation of world class stories (or should I say themes) in Maqbool and Omkara. I knew Kaminey is neither, none.

Another reason of my fear of disappointment was Shahid Kapoor and Priyanka Chopra. I like bothof them. I feel they are very talented and genuine actors. I didn’t want their film to flop. But eventually I went ahead and watched the movie.¬†Thank fully I was not disappointed. Kaminey is a very very generic story masterfully crafted into an intriuing piece of work. Although I think the comparison of Vishal to Quentin Tarantino or Ridley Scott is a bit hyped, primarily because Vishal Bhardwaj is a unique film maker. Matching Tarantino is a herculean task. I think Kaminey’s filming has a reminiscence of ‘The Departed’ by Martin Scorsese more than any one else. Anyway, Let us come to the movie now.

kamineyKaminey is a story of two siamise twins Guddu and Charlie (played by Shahid). Both have a speech defect. Guddu stammers where as Charlie pronunces ‘S’ as ‘F’. Charlie is a small time goon who bets on horses, manipulates and earns his daily bread. He has a dream to achieve, to be a big time booker one day. One day he gets double crossed by his own jockey. In a bid to revenge, he lands up in a 5 star hotel to bash the conspirator. But time turns the tide and while running away from the opposition gang, he gets embroiled in a drug smuglling controversy involving a don and the corrupt narcotics department of the Police.

Guddu on the other hand is a ‘guy next door’ who works with an NGO, loves a ‘marathi mulgi’ Sweety (Priyanka) and hates his brother for all his bad deeds. The story book affair turns soar when sweety gets pregnant. They can get married and live happily ever after, except that Sweety is a sister of a goon turned ‘Marathi wadi’ wannabe politician Bhope Bhau (Amole Gupte). Now Bhope Bhau surely doesn’t like this and when learning that Guddu is from UP, wants to finish him off.

The happenings in 24 hrs from here on, the movie gathers unmatched speed. Charlie wants to sells the drugs so that he can start his bookie business. Bhope wants to kill Guddu and marry his sister to the builders son for party funds. Guddu wants Charlie to give the drugs to Bhope so that he gets his money for funding his election campaign and Guddu gets his girl. The narcotics department wants Charlie so that they can get hold of the drugs and deliver it to the Don ‘Tashi’. And Tashi wants to finish every one off, get the drugs, sell it to the Angolian gangster in exchange of the diamonds. Confused? He he… ¬†ūüôā

This is what makes Vishal Bhardwaj a master film maker. Excellent narration, brilliant camera angles and deft editing makes Kaminey a wonderful treat to watch. I heard lot of people saying the movie could have been little less violent. But I think to make a movie of this genre, it has to be raw. The dark surroundings, back ground score and the crisp dialogues makes it even more appealing. No point in singling out one actor as every one have performed par excellence. Shahid and Priyanka’s chemistry is great (I so much wish if she could have been a marathi mulgi in reality). And the Industry might have got a new baddie in Amole Gupte.

Overall I will give a 3 and half stars to the movie. And this rating is purely on the basis of the way the movie is made. Had there been a brilliant story/ theme (a.k.a. Omkara), I’d have given 5 stars easily. Go and watch once if you haven’t and if you can tolerate raw action.

Movie Review: Love Aaj Kal is WOW

I’m no fan of story book romantic ‘Love stories’. (Yes I write love stories myself. But I haven’t read any and have no plans either.) I dont like romantic movies too much, except the likes of DDLJ, Noting Hill and Serendipity. But I adored both ‘Socha na tha’ and ‘Jab we met’. That is what made me believe that Imtiyaz Ali is a brilliant film maker. And that is why I wanted to watch ‘Love Aaj Kal’ as soon as it was released. I wasn’t disappointed at all!

I think we as a generation are slowly getting more casual about the relationships we have with each other. Most of my friends (almost all of them) dont stay with their parents. They have left the house for either education, job, differences with parents or for the pure thrill of it. We are getting more ‘friend’ly with our connects. Love affairs are no strange to it. I remember the college days and the first love (infatuation). I dont think we spoke commitment. But we were less casual. Alas, the times have now changed. The casual ‘no frills’ relationship is probably taking center stage I guess. Anyway, let us talk about the movie now.

love-aaj-kal‘Love Aaj Kal’ makes an attempt to build a bridge between the two aspect, that is committed love versus casual love and bind them together. (The bridge, by the way, has been brilliantly used). We have certain Jai (played by Saif) who is a protagonist of casual relationships. He doesn’t know what commitment is, he doesn’t want to understand and he doesn’t think it is important. Of course he is not a Casanova. Just that he doesn’t want to get into a lovey dovey relationship and then go through the grinds of possessiveness, greed, jealousy and all. He is ambitious and his career is very much his only focus. Meera (Deepika) is a cute little (by no means height) girl who wants to work for restoration of historical sights in India. She is dating Saif, without actually being committed or being in love. Life is a ‘happy-go-lucky’ circus for them, without having to carry the excess baggage of a relationship.

2 years pass by and then it suddenly changes. Meera gets her big break and decides to shift to Delhi. They both decide that long distance affair is not going to work and they happily break off. They both find love (rather entertainment) some where else. But are still in touch, without knowing what have they lost… or are going to lose. The realisation comes soon to Meera when she is getting married to Vikram (Rahul Khanna). Of course eventually you know the end is happy!

The story looks very generic, except that it has been brilliantly made. The movie has a very sweet and soothing feeling to it. It has been very well interspersed with the ‘committed’ love story of the 60s (Rishi Kapoor playing Veer Singh). Deepika is very adorable and her chemistry with Saif is exceptional. I wish the difference in their heights should have been more than the difference in their ages. That is well complemented with the music and the costumes too. I think Imtiyaz Ali has done nothing wrong here. The dialogues, the angles, the script… all is great. In fact, I liked the 60s love story more than the one he essayed here.

Overall Love Aaj Kal is absolutely fresh and new age. I dont know if this is the new age relationship mantra. But this can be a new genre of film making for sure. ūüôā

Movie Review: Gulaal

Gulaal is raw. Gulaal is eccentric. Gulaal is charismatic and Gulaal is very effective.

With his genre of film making, Anurag Kashyap has garnered quite a few fans amongst all kinds of masses. I’m a guy who drives to a multiplex, eats at the malls and spends 500 bucks on movies over a weekend. On the other side of the road, there is a guy who travels in buses, survives on vada pav and watches movies in small theatres spending not more than 50 bucks. Gulaal is sure to strike both me and him.

Gulaal is a story of a young innocent Rajput Dilip Singh (portrayed by Raj Singh Choudhary) who enrolls for a course in law and gets embroiled into the dirty world of student politics. The movie is set in the backdrop of a fight for separate Rajputana region and how the student elections are used as a stage to launch the fight against perceived injustice by government of India. Dilip falls victim to a brutal ragging by some of his college mates. He finds a friend in Rannanjay Singh, an estranged heir of the royal family of Rajpur. But hings turn out to be sour when the ragging leader Jadwal (brilliant portrayal by Deepak Dobriyal) decides to turn the heat up on them. They are helped by the ‘Banaa’ or the unofficial senapati of the Rajputanas, Duki (Kay Kay Menon). Rannanjay decides to contest elections for the General Secy of university, but is murdered because of an old family feud and Dilip is draggged in. What unfolds is a story of love, lost families, betrayl, friendship and old rivalries for the coveted post of Banaa. The movie climax looks to be a derivative of¬† ‘The Departed’.

All in all, Gulaal impresses mainly because of its raw portrayal of the Rajputana movement and the life in a college campus, especially regarding elections. Kay Kay Menon is argualbly the best in the lot. But without doubt, debutans Ayesha Menon and Raj Singh Choudhary, Deepak Dobriyal and Piyush Mishra have crafted splendid unforgetful performances. Gulaal may not be a movie for masses, especially the Shah Rukh Khan fans. But it surely scripts brilliantly for the ones who enjoy hard core cinema in the raw format. Hail Anurag Kashyap! After Black Friday, No Smoking and Dev.D here comes another stunner from the acclaimed director. Go for it!

Kashmir Ki Kali

kashmir_ki_kaliMy movie reviews have decided to go down the wide memory lane now. Since there were no good or really bad movies released lately, the regular review post on my blog was searching for inspiration. Thankfully UTV fulfilled that drought by airing the Sharmila Tagore, Shammi Kapoor starer ‘Kashmir Ki Kali’.

Frankly speaking, I’m no one to review a film of this stature. KKL is an eternal love story. Set in the back drop of the lovely Srinagar, It is a story about a rich guy trying to woo a poor girl with his charm and demeanor. Rajiv (Shammi Kapoor) accidentally meets Champa (Sharmila Tagore) en route to Srinagar. He falls in love with her. They meet again later and the lovely cute love story begins to flourish. They indeed have opposition in Champa’s blind father (Dinu) who is a debtor to Mohan (Pran). Although the movie has its own share of twists and turns, it floors you with its refreshing beauty and subtlety. Sharmila Tagore is at her sweetest best. When this film was shot, she was just 17! She absolutely packs the punch with her stunningly beautiful yet sublimely sexy portrayal of Champa. Although not her first, but it was indeed her first hit movie. Shammi Kapoor exudes the right energy and charm very much required for this role. Their on screen chemistry of the couple is commendable. Hats off to the directing legend Shakti Samantha for making this movie.

What adds to the already beautiful movie is the soothing music and deft choreography. O. P. Nayyar is without doubt one of the greatest music directors we have ever had. He created the magic when we hardly had any technology in India. The songs like ‘Deewana hua badal’, ‘Isharon Isharon mein’, ‘Taarif karun kya uski’, ‘Kisi na kisi’, ‘Subhan Allah’ all are brilliant.

If you haven’t seen the movie, watch it today. Had I been a film maker, I would have immediately made my mind to re-create the magic of Kashmir ki Kali. It is wonderfully sweet!

Smash Hit! Whats that?

I was reading this in the news papers today, in Times of India. Actually in the most useless section of thepaper, the bombay times. (I normally read it only for the cartoons, horoscope, sale offers and movie shows). They said ‘Raaz… the mystery continues is the first smash hit of 2009. As far as I remember, there are two reasons for me to believe this is a hoax. One, the movie was released only last week. So it cant be a smash hit within seven days. Two, its release clashed with ‘Slumdog Millionaire.’ So so hardly any body went to watch it. So…

I have nothing against Raaz. I’m just wondering how do film makers decide the movies are hit or a flop. I remember makers of Singh is King claiming it to be a smash hit whereas the records suggest it was just an average coomedy flick. Even Himesh claimed Karzzzz to be a superhit whereas I have a proof of empty theatres (I have a picture) to show no one came to watch him even on the second day of its release. Chandni Chowk to China claimed it collected 45 crores in the first week. I’m not sure if Nikhil Advani meant money or eggs and chappals. The latter is more likely.

The list is endless but the question still remains unanswered. Can any one tell me what exactly is a smash hit and what are the basis of ratings?