Movie Review: Baaghi

Baaghi: Nothing Rebellious about this Rebel

Baaghi Movie ReviewSabbir Khan introduced Tiger Shroff to Bollywood in an impressive “Heropanti” which may not be termed as a classic but it was entertaining and an ideal launch vehicle for a newcomer and giving due credit to Tiger Shroff he did not disappoint us. The same director actor duo comes up with “Baaghi”….hence the expectations are high…

“Baaghi” has slim story line of a rebel Ronny who is sent to Kerala by his dying father to Guruswamy (Grandmaster Shifuji Shaurya Bharadwaj) to be trained in martial arts of Kalaripayattu to discipline his life. On the way to Kerala Ronny meets Sia (Shradha Kapoor) and falls in love. Trouble starts when Raghav ( Sudheer Babu Posani), Guruswamy’s son also falls in love with Sia. Does Ronny get his love and gets tamed by Guruswamy is what the movie is all about….

Story & Screenplay written by Sanjeev Dutta is extremely clichéd and predictable to the core. The love story between the two principle characters which forms the very basis of the story is the weakest without any emotion or chemistry amongst the pair. The love story is filled with clichés and looks dated, and at times the love story is unintentionally funny, like rain being a catalyst to their love. After a point the love story becomes unbearable and the last thing you want to see is the love track. The characters written are extremely sketchy, like why Ronny is rebellious, or why Raghav who is the son of the Trainer Guruswamy becomes so notorious, or the character of Sia’s father who seems to be greedy is never explored properly. The training and action sequences are a direct lift from South Asian movies especially “The Raid”. Rather the training sequences are the only interesting facets of the script but unfortunately it is not explored. Another flaw in the screenplay is, that the sequences are left unfinished, like what happens pre interval or nobody does anything when Guruswamy dies, making no sense. Many characters are introduced but never explored like the child character Subbu who sounded like the child character of “Hatya”. The first half is actually boring and drags….The dialogues also sound very 90’s and dated which pulls down the screenplay yet more….Overall the writing is extremely weak and at the end “Baaghi”  neither is a love story nor a complete action packed movie…

Even the performances do not save the day… Tiger Shroff as Ronny looks like he is repeating his “Heropanti” act, but what worked for him in his debut movie falls flat for him in this movie. He seems extremely uncomfortable in romantic and emotional scenes and looks comfortable only in action sequences. Another flaw is his dialogue delivery which has a heavy English accent; he really needs to brush up his Hindi diction if he wants to survive. Shradha Kapoor as Sia again repeats her “Aashiqui 2”, “Ek Villain” and “ABCD 2” act of a chirpy and girl next door but unfortunately fails this time. I won’t say it was a bad act but then there was nothing new as well, would love to see Shradha in more sensitive roles like that of Arshia in “Haider”. There is absolutely no chemistry between the lead pair… Telegu actor Sudheer Babu who debuts in “Baaghi” as Raghav the antagonist, is the only performance worth watching in the movie, he justifies his menacing act with his portrayal, but it is the writing which pulls down his performance, hope Bollywood gives more chances to Sudheer Babu…Grandmaster Shifuji Shaurya Bharadwaj the commando trainer of the Indian Army makes his acting debut as Guruswamy in this movie, and he does complete justice to his character and his sequences are few of the worth watching sequences of the movie especially the training sequences but unfortunately the screenplay did not give too much scope to his character. Rest of the cast like Sunil Grover, Sanjay Mishra end up hamming instead of acting and are wasted….

Action is the biggest highlight of the movie; action directors Kecha Kammpakdee and Javed Ejaz choreograph the stunt sequence brilliantly and give an international feel, they exploited the core strength of Tiger Shroff to the fullest…

The Cinematography by Binod Pradhan is one of the highlights of the movie…he captures Kerala and Bangkok like a dream…he gives the dreamy hue in the Kerala sequences and gives the gritty feel while capturing the by lanes of Bangkok….

Music is another highlight of the movie….the top three songs would be “Cham Cham” composed by Meet Brothers and rendered beautifully by Monali Thakur, the love ballad “Sab Tera” composed by Amaal Mallik and rendered by Armaan Mallik & Shradha Kapoor and last being “Girl I Need You” another ballad by Meet Brothers and sung beautifully by Arijit Singh…

Sabbir Khan could not salvage the already weak script with his direction; rather Sabbir is extremely weak in emotional quotient which was evident in his previous movies “Kambakt Ishq” and “Heropanti”. Sabbir looks completely confused what he wanted to make, whether a love story or a martial arts action movie….and the confusion is quite evident in the narration…

“Baaghi” is extremely clichéd and Tiger Shroff’s second outing is a BIG disappointment…the end credits where they show the behind the scenes clippings were more entertaining than the whole movie… I will go with “One and a half stars”….

Movie Rating: (1.5 / 5)

Movie Review : Nil Battey Sannata

Nil Battey Sannata : Passed with distinction….

Some movies entertain you and you tend to forget them, but some movies are very simple but yet they  entertain you but also tend remain in your mind long after the movie gets over…”Nil Battey Sannata” is one such movie.

The story of “Nil Battey Sannata” captures the trials and tribulations of a mother who has high expectations and big dreams for her daughter. It also captures the strata of the society who need to earn on a daily basis to run their kitchens, our domestic help… Chanda (Swara Bhaskar) is one such domestic help in a small city of Agra who dreams to educate her daughter Apeksha a.k.a Apu (Ria Shukla) and has big dreams for her for which he works in two to three places in shifts in order to educate and give her daughter a different life so that her daughter does not end up becoming a domestic help….But her adolescent daughter lives a care free life devoid of any dreams and is a complete zero in maths… so Chanda’s main concern is to make her pass the 10th Board exam, whether Chanda is able to fulfil her dream of making her daughter pass the 10th Board exam is what the movie is all about…

In the last few reviews I have been emphasizing on the strength of a good script and screenplay and “Nil Battey Sannata” scores full marks for nil-battey-sannata-reviewthe same… The story by Nitesh Tiwari  & screenplay written by Nitesh Tiwari, Ashwiny Iyer Tiwari, Pranjal Choudhary & Neeraj Singh is the biggest highlight of the movie….The relationship of the mother & the daughter is so heart wrenching that you would identify the sweet & sour relationship that we share with our mothers… every single sequence between the mother and daughter is brilliant… another relationship well explored is Chanda’s relationship with Dr Diwan where she works as a domestic help, the bond and relationship between these two characters is believable. To be very frank every character has its special place in the movie whether it is the principal or Apu’s friends, every character is very well written and justifies their presence in the story. Well it may not be too much to say that the writing is one the best which I have come across after a long time, the last such script was of “Dum Laga Ke Haisha”…

The dialogues written by the same team of writers is another highlight of the movie. It complements the script to the fullest. The diction, the language every word is spot on and you cannot find any blemishes in the dialogues as well. Overall the writing is just brilliant…

After writing it is the performances that makes “Nil Battey Sannata” worth a watch…especially the performance of Swara Bhaskar who plays the main protagonist Chanda, a domestic help…Swara just becomes Chanda and I don’t think so there can be any bigger appreciation for her performance. She owns the character and never ever will you feel the Swara Bhaskar of “Tanu Weds Manu” or “Ranjhnaa” or “Prem Ratan Dhan Payo”…she is so natural and everything about her portrayal is just brilliant. Swara would definitely be the favourite contender for awards for this year. Next is debutant Ria Shukla who plays Chanda’s daughter Apu, she complements Swara’s performance with equal vigour and helps to create the right chemistry between the character of the mother and the daughter, definitely another brilliant performance. Ratna Pathak Shah as Dr Diwan, Chanda’s employer, is just amazing, the way she underplays the character becomes the beauty of portrayal and the chemistry of both the characters is full marks to Swara Bhaskar and Ratna Pathak Shah….Another brilliant performance is of Pankaj Tripathi who plays the Principal and the maths teacher of the school, Pankaj yet again proves his brilliance with his realistic portrayal, definitely a actor watch out for….rest of the cast also do a brilliant job….Sanjay Suri in a cameo is adorable….

Cinematography by Gavemic U Ary blends brilliantly with the narration and the beauty is how simply Agra and it’s by lanes having been captured….

The next highlight is the production design by Laxmi Kaluskar, which is so brilliant that you would never feel that it is a movie set….and the another highlight is its costume design by Sachin Lovalekar, the costumes builds the characters and Sachin does a brilliant job in getting the looks of the characters just right…

Will have to mention casting director Mukesh Chabra, who gets the casting, right….

At last and definitely not the least, the director Ashwiny Iyer Tiwari, first kudos to her for choosing such a topic and second executing such a brilliant script, co-written by her, in a simple yet beautiful way. Ashwiny gets the chemistry of the characters bang on and she gets the emotional quotient just right without any melodrama. Will definitely watch out for Ashwiny’s next….

“Nil Battey Sannata”, is simple yet will pull your heart strings and will make you laugh and cry and at the end will put a smile on your face…will go with FOUR stars….

Movie Rating: (4 / 5)

Official Trailer: Udta Punjab

udta-punjab-official-trailer“Udta Punjab” as the name suggests is based in Punjab and deals with a serious issue of drugs amongst the youth of Punjab….

Directed by Abhishek Chaubey whose earlier movies Ishqiya, Dedh Ishqiya was based in UP and was more of a love story, takes up a serious issue for this movie….

The movie primarily captures the lives of four characters played by Shahid Kapoor who plays Punjabi pop star Tommy Singh, Kareena Kapoor Khan who plays Dr. Preet Sahani, Alia Bhatt who plays Kumari Pinky a labour from Jharkhand and Diljit Dosanjh who plays Sartaj Singh a Police Inspector. Diljit who is a super star in Punjabi films debuts in Bollywood with “Udta Punjab”. Satish Kaushik also plays an important role in the movie…

Music has been scored by Amit Trivedi and lyrics by Varun Grover….

The movie has been produced by Balaji Motion Pictures & Phantom Films…

The trailer clearly shows each actor has done a role which they have not tried before and the premise looks interesting, whether this movie which looks and feels different would be appreciated by our audience, well we have to wait till 17th June 2016 when the movie releases. Till then enjoy the Official Trailer…

Movie Review: Fan

FAN: The Jabra FAN shines over SRK

Fan Movie ReviewFor the last few years after “Chak De”, Shahrukh just could not get it right, though his movies did 100 crores but somewhere the actor Shahrukh was camouflaged by the STAR Shahrukh Khan….

Good News is “FAN” brings back the ACTOR Shahrukh Khan on silver screen with the portrayal of Gaurav Chandana who is a BIG fan of Aryan Khanna (Shahrukh Khan) and has a striking resemblance to Aryan. Gaurav is famous amongst his West Delhi locality as the Junior Aryan Khanna. He wins a competition in a local fare and plans to visit Aryan Khanna in Mumbai on Aryan’s birthday and gift the trophy that he has won. But things go out of hand for him in Mumbai and Gaurav finds himself in the receiving end of Aryan Khanna and to his shock his matinee idol refuses to acknowledge Gaurav as his Fan. Dejected Gaurav returns to Delhi but with a vengeance in his heart to teach Aryan Khanna a lesson….is Gaurav able to take revenge from Aryan Khanna is what the movie is all about….

Story & Screenplay by Habib Faisal starts off on a realistic ground and the first half sticks to realism, it is in the second half that the movie takes a complete U turn from Realistic cinema to typical Bollywood masala. The second half is full of glitches and flaws like everybody mistaking Gaurav as Aryan, including Aryan’s guards and wife, whereas in the first half  Gaurav was differentiable, or how did Gaurav end up in London or Aryan a super star taking up on himself to teach Gaurav a lesson looked too farfetched, especially after a realistic start. Another problem with the movie is its screen time of 143 minutes; it could have been easily 30 minutes short. But it is the characterization which stands out in the writing, off course Gaurav’s character is the best written character but even the support characters are also written well, which is Habib Faisal’s forte. The middle class ethos is portrayed brilliantly by Habib Faisal. Another thing where Habib Faisal scores is getting the true feelings of a hard core FAN in his writing. Some sequences do touch your heart and remains with you even after the movie is over, especially the last few scenes in the climax.

Dialogues by Habib Faisal and Sharat Kataria brings the Delhi lingo back and blends with the narration, the words, the pronunciations everything is just apt. It won’t be wrong to say that the dialogues of the movie took the screenplay to a different level….

But what actually makes the movie shine is the performance of Shahrukh Khan, his portrayal of Gaurav Chandana is just brilliant and reminds you of the Shahrukh Khan of “Kabhi Haan Kabhi Naa” or “Darr” put together but with a difference, what with him playing a 20 year old at the age of 50 and the complete Delhi mannerism which he nailed with Gaurav. Definitely Shahrukh will be the toast of the awards season for this year. Shahrukh as Aryan gives a restrained performance of cocky headed star, but it is Gaurav’s portrayal which overshadows the entire cast. Deepika Amin as Gaurav’s mother and Yogendra Tikku as Gaurav’s father complement Gaurav’s character beautifully, especially Deepika Amin, good to see that she is getting her due at last. Debutant Shriya Pilgaonkar (Actor Sachin’s daughter) as Neha, Gaurav’s friend is impressive and extremely natural though she has very less screen time, definitely an actress to watch out for. Sayani Gupta as Aryan’s PA, though a small part does complete justice to the character, though her role in the film did not justify her calibre for sure. Debutant Walusha D’Souza as Bela Aryan’s wife, is natural and does a good job, never will you feel that this is her first screen outing, she holds on to her own even in front of the stalwart like Shahrukh Khan. Rest of the supporting cast also do a good job….

Manu Anand’s cinematography gives the extra edge to the movie, whether it is the Delhi by lanes or the beautiful locations of London or Croatia, Manu captures it with brilliance, especially the chase sequences….

Well one of the flaws of the movie is its editing by Namrata Rao, being a thriller it could have been much more crisper but unfortunately some places the movie dips and fails to be a complete thriller…

I give full credit to Maneesh Sharma the director, for digging out the actor Shahrukh Khan for “FAN”. Maneesh successfully brings out the ethos of a FAN brilliantly. Well not to mention his forte in capturing the middle class Delhi brilliantly. Just one complaint Maneesh just looses it a bit in the second half, but extracts brilliant performances from the cast, especially Shahrukh Khan….But I still feel “Band Baja Baraat” as his best till date…

“FAN” is a Shahrukh Khan show all the way, and he does not disappoint with his earnest performance after a long time….I will go with Three and a Half Stars….
Movie Rating: (3.5 / 5)

Azhar: Official Trailer

“Azhar”, is a film based on the Indian cricketer Mohammad Azharruddin. The movie chronicles the cricketer’s journey from being a no one to a renowned cricketer and his controversial life like the famous betting case against him, or his love life with Bollywood actress Sangeeta Bijlani whom he married later or his infamous link up with Jwala Gutta….Azhar Official Trailer

Tony D’Souza, the famous novelist debuts as a director in Bollywood with “Azhar”….

Emraan Hashmi plays the titular role of “Azhar”, for which he almost took a break from other movie assignments to concentrate and prepare for the role of a cricketer. The other cast includes Prachi Desai, Nargis Fakhri, Huma Qureshi, Lara Dutta, Kunal Roy Kapoor, Gautam Gulati, Rajesh Sharma & Manjot Singh…

Written by Rajat Arora the movie expects to explore many facets of the controversial cricketer’s life…

The music has been scored by Pritam & Amaal Mallik…

“Azhar” has been produced by Balaji Motion Pictures, Sony Pictures Networks & Indiana Films Ltd and releases on 13th May 2016….till then enjoy the Official trailer of the movie which provides us the glimpse of what “Azhar” is all about…

Ki and Ka: Movie Review

Ki & Ka: Has the Spice but still remains bland…

Ki_and_Ka_Movie_ReviewBeing different is R Balki’s forte, and “Ki & Ka” is no different. It tells us of role reversal of genders in Indian Society. Abroad house husbands are quite common, but not in India, hence a movie on house husband is a novel idea for India….

R Balki tells us the story of Kia and Kabir. Kia (Kareena Kapoor) is a high flying marketing manager who meets Kabir (Arjun Kapoor) son of a reputed builder, in a flight and subsequently they fall in love and get married..But they were a different couple, where Kabir took the responsibility of taking care of the household chores and Kia took the responsibility of being the bread earner. The movie chronicles whether the love of Kia (Ki) and Kabir (Ka) remain intact in a role reversal of sorts in a society where a “Man” is supposed to be the bread earner and the “Woman” to be the support for the “Man”…

Story & Screenplay by R Balki has a new age feel, and depicts the characters accordingly whether it is Kia’s character of a high flying corporate executive who is ambitious and a go getter or Kabir who is today’s youth who does not have any qualms of adapting to the responsibilities of a house maker or Kia’s mothers character a modern day woman who is comfortable of his daughter being an ambitious go getter and her son-in-law being the house maker. Though the characters are extremely well etched but where the writing fails is its screenplay, Balki fails to create an interesting premise for these extremely strong characters. The screenplay is flat throughout the movie not peaking even once. Rather the screenplay looks like a collaborations of incidents in the couple’s life and their tiffs which does not add any meat to the screenplay. There is not a single scene which stands out from cinematic stand point. Overall the screenplay pulls down the film, and the concept loses its inherent novelty….

It is the dialogue which tries pull up the screenplay a bit through its witty and extremely realistic lingo. The dialogues are believable and blend well with the modern theme…especially all the dialogues pertaining to gender equality and relationship sound extremely natural and realistic, something which today’s viewers would connect to…

The biggest highlight of the movie is its crackling performances by the ensemble cast. Starting with Kareena Kapoor who plays the ever ambitious Kia, well it is good to see a remarkable performance from her after a long time. Kareena again proves her mettle with her portrayal of Kia; she keeps the complexity of the character subtle which brings the freshness in her performance. Arjun Kapoor as Kabir is the scene stellar; his portrayal is effortless and makes the character endearing and lovable through his performance. Arjun shows that he can portray a sensitive character even with his rugged look. But one thing that stands out is the apt chemistry of Kareena Kapoor and Arjun Kapoor, I just hope that someone should repeat the pair in a matured love story. It was a delight to see Swaroop Sampat after a long hiatus, and mind you she does not disappoint at all, rather she adds the panache to the movie. Swaroop Sampat’s performance is effortless and brings the necessary balance between the two principal characters beautifully; I hope film makers should cast her more often now. Rajit Kapoor as the Kabir’s businessman father has a small role but he shines with his portrayal of high handed businessman who disapproves his son’s approach to life. The cameo by Amitabh Bachchan & Jaya Bachchan is the biggest highlight of the movie, the banter between Jaya and Amitabh was cute, especially Amitabh’s sulking act won our hearts over. Rest of the support cast does not disappoint as well…

P C Sreeram yet again gives us brilliant cinematic visuals through his excellent camera work. Though with this movie which was shot substantially indoors the cinematographer had absolutely no scope to show his talent, but not with P C, he captures the love and chemistry with absolute élan…

Production Design by Rupin Suchak is innovative, especially the flat of the couple which looks like a railway station….something different from the usual home settings….

Music has never been a strong point in Balki’s movies, so is “Ki & Ka”…. Other than “High Heels” which is the revamped version of Yo Yo Honey Singh’s runaway hit and to some extent “Ji Hazoori” by Mithoon, other tracks are easily forgettable…

Just having a good concept does not suffice for a Good movie but it needs to be backed by a equally brilliant writing which unfortunately is the biggest flaw in R Balki’s screenplay, which is flat throughout the movie…But where Balki scores his getting some brilliant performances from the lead pair and other cast, something which he has been doing brilliantly in his previous movies as well. But Balki’s writing which was brilliant in “Cheeni Kum” and “Paa” was unfortunately seen missing in “Shamitabh” and in “Ki & Ka”, but knowing Balki we are sure he will bounce back with an excellent story again… till then give me “Paa” or “Cheeni Kum” anyday….

For its novel idea and brilliant performances I will give “Ki & Ka”….3 stars…

Movie Rating: (3 / 5)