Review

2014 Movies Platter : A Review !


2014 Year is about to end, and the movie platter served though had a vast spread but lacked quality as compared to previous year. There were massy event-films like “Happy New Year” “Singham 2” and “Ek Villain” like Gol-Gappas – Tangy, Tingy and yet leave you hungry. And then there were crassy repent-films like “Action Jackson” “Humshakals” and “Entertainment”, which were like rotten  shit for stray-dogs. And there were those too like “Kick”, “Shaadi Ke Side-Effects” and “Bang-Bang” with promising appearances. Though when being tasted, were insipid !
Yet there were very few sumptuous finger-licking dishes with lingering tastes, as if served in Michelin-star restaurants! In no particular order, here are my top 5 favorite movies of the year 2014 :
– “Highway”
– “Queen”
– “Haider”
– “PK”
– “Hawa Hawai”

There were other few like “Dedh Ishqiya”, “Hasee to Phasee”, “Mary Kom”, “Mardaani”and “Bobby Jasoos”, who just missed being part of the above esteemed list.

There were few others like “Ankhon Dekhi”, “Lakshmi”, “Jal”, “Manjunath” and “Finding Fanny” which I wanted to taste, but couldn’t due to full-stomach (read budget constraints 😉).

Overall, I was happy to see Indian Cinema taking another leap with more women-oriented movies being released and faring better both at box-office and with critics.

In the end, if I have to chose One “Movie of the Year” at a gun-point, I would place my bets on “Queen” ! I just wish, many more such films are made.

If you have a different set of list, do comment and share your views. Till then, Bon Apetite !

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More Than Meets The Eye – Taare Zameen Par…


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Till now, everyone must have watched “Taare Zameen Par”. Was it not a great experience!!! Actually I am short of words to describe the movie’s excellence. I watched it on the very first day although my exams were just 4 days away. I always felt that the movie was not about only Dyslexia but more about child labor. The movie was more about parent’s expectations from a child, and the cruel competitive world.
The movie made me cry a lot. But the unusual part of it is, whenever I see the movie again, I feel like crying every-time. As if I am helpless and couldn’t help “Ishaan”! As if, I am disgusted by the God’s decision! As if, it is my story! As if, it is the story of every child around us! As if many Ishaans are around us,asking for help! As if every child is in the making of Ishaan. And as far as I have got the review of the movie, almost everyone cried while watching the movie. Are we all helpless?
So shouldn’t we take a step ahead, and make difference through our deeds. Can’t we take a day off and visit a NGO to spend some time with children suffering with problems like mental retardation, autism, dyslexia etc.? Or can’t we stop spending our money on McDonald’s and KFC’s and donate that money to such organizations? Or the simplest thing we can do is, to make sure that no more Ishaan are created. Make sure when we will have our children, we will let them live there childhood.
Think upon it! Do it yourself, in your own way. But atleast we should do something, so that the next time, a movie like Taare Zameen Par releases, we will not cry !!!

Highway – An Emotional Odyssey !


Leave all your prejudices at home, instill a little empathy, and watch “Highway”. I am sure it would turn out to be, one of the most soul-stirring movie experiences you may had in recent times. At least I had the heart-wrenching experience, for sure.

“Highway” is a picturesque travelogue of an urbane glitterati young-girl and an earthy haryanvi lawless-man. Midst their journey, both see through each other’s troubled pasts, and find eternal happiness in each other.

Alia Bhatt’s performance is exceptional, to say the least. She has surprised many through her acting skills in “Highway” and does certainly deserve a nomination this year. Both Alia Bhatt and Randeep Hooda lived their well-etched characters to the bone. Rahman’s music transposes the emotional expedition to the hilt. Yet again proves that he is still remains the best in the business.

A realistic cinema, few laughs, many smiles and dozens of tear-jerking scenes!

This is by far, Imtiaz Ali’s best work.

A must watch!

Gravity : A Heavenly Experience !


Usual movie goer’s expectation from a film is “Entertainment Entertainment Entertainment” ! Meanwhile, if the same movie depicts a social message as well, that’s the icing on the cake. But what if, a movie goes beyond this and ends up as an “Experience” ! “Gravity” surely is a must have experience in one’s life !

Extremely engaging and well crafted “Gravity”, with merely 2 actors and a slim storyline, creates a never-before cinematic experience of life in space.
Its biggest strengths are in its exceptional cinematography, thrilling screenplay, witty dialogues, and legendary performances ! Its brilliant background score further enhances the celestial experience manifolds.

Volumes of pages can be written about movie’s realistic photography, with high attention to detail and astounding artistic perfection, powered by 3D pleasure. But rather writing more about it, I would say, “See it, to believe it” !

Beyond its magical photography, Gravity also weaves in an emotional spatial journey of a mother, an astronaut and a friend, all in one. Amidst all the unforseen, ongoing and untamable problems in life, Gravity enlightens us with a message of “Undying Hope” ! Once the movie ends, though teary eyed, you feel more powerful to face crests and troughs of life !

It would surely be remembered as landmark movie in the history of cinema. Special kudos to the director and the cinematography team.

Don’t miss this one for sure ! Copy that !

The Best 10 ! Ending August Fever


2013 has taken the Bollywood’s 2012’s “Variety’s Mantel” ahead, with exciting movies across genres. Big budgeted movies like “Yeh Jawani Hai Deewani” and “Chennai Express” garnered huge collections, breaking several records. On the other hand, movies like “Ghanchakkar” and “OUTIMD” came out duds.

To start with, I would concede the fact, as I was unable to watch few acclaimed movies, which could have made it to my list. These were – Ship of Theseus, Lootera, Aurangzeb, Saheb Biwi or Gangster 2, David and Vishwaroopam.

2/3rds of the year has passed by, and here is my list of the “Best 10” (not in particular order) till end of August.

1) Bhaag Milkha Bhaag
2) Madras Cafe
3) Special 26
4) Kai Po Chhe
5) ABCD : Any Body Can Dance
6) Raanjhanna
7) Jolly LLB
8) D-Day
9) Chashme Baddoor
10) Table No. 21

Special mention for “Bombay Talkies”, an ensemble of short stories, was outstanding, but only in parts !

The rest of the year, is awaiting some big releases, which includes Satyagraha, Shuddh Desi Romance, JohnDay, The Lunch Box, Besharam, Boss, Krrish 3 and Dhoom 3 etc.

Does my list matches with yours ?  Do share your feedback !

Madras Cafe : A Milestone in Indian Cinema


Madras Cafe is engaging political thriller and a must watch for all Indians to refurbish their dented history ! This movie, stitched through series of real life events, wrapped in fiction, will go down in history as one of the classics.

It may not be everyone’s cup of tea (pun intended), as it is an intelligent and a no-nonsense thriller. Though we all are broadly aware of the history, yet Shoojit Sircar manages to create an edge of the seat thriller racing towards the pulsating and the tear-jerking climax.

Being an Indian “Argo”, Madras Cafe emerges out to be highly detailed and a well scripted affair. And thankfully, unlike his predecessors from “Ek Tha Tiger” and “Agent Vinod”, this RAW agent (although his attempts end up in a failed mission) is filmed realistically !

Kudos to John Abraham (grand salute for producing this one) & Siddarth Basu for their roles, Shantanu Moitra for his background score and Kamaljeet Negi for his excellent cinematography.

And above all, a big round of applause for Shoojit Sircar again, for his extremely well researched content and brilliant direction. Post Vicky Donor, you have taken a leap by attempting this rare genre successfully. You are in a different league now!

Finest, Fascinating and Pathbreaking !

An open letter to Shobha De’s views on Raanjhana !


Hi Shobha ji,

Your desperate attempt to bring spotlight to your not-so-read film reviews has worked. Several pro and anti tweets on your article in Mumbai Mirror, itched me to read your article in detail.

The article clearly suggests that you know very little about India, and especially about hinterlands of India. Sitting in Mumbai, when a Socialite comments on India, it sounds so wannabe. It reminds me of a dialogue from a movie “Bas itna sa khwab hai” in which Abhishek Bachchan is asked about his village, and he proudly says, that he is from Banaras, which is a City. And the Mumbaikars respond – “Mumbai ke bahar sab Gaaon !”

Well, as far as Raanjhanna goes, the movie depicts how life functions in hinterlands of India, and not about how it should be. Also, considering your urbane backdrop, you weren’t the target segment of the movie, to comment on it.

Raanjhanna is about true love muscled up by caste creed religion politics and social stigmas,including education and societal status. Movie talks about Dhanush’s love banaras style, and also Abhay Deol and Sonam’s love in metro style. So let not allow ourselves to comment so pragmatically on anybody’s cultural and educational background.

Although I would agree with your review about sluggish second half of the movie. But as you would also agree on Dhanush’s super acting, brilliant screenplay and Rehman’s score.