Movie Review : ABCD 2

ABCD 2: Too Much Dance, Too Much Glitz But Not Too much of Story

ABCD revived the genre of dance based movies in 2013, which gave Mithun and B Subhash success in the 80’s. It cemented Remo D’Souza as a sought after director and gave India its first answer to Hollywood’s movie “Step Up”…..

Remo takes the sequel ABCD 2 a step further where Vishnu Sir takes another task of training a group of underdogs from Nalasopara which includes Suresh (Varun Dhawan) a waiter, Vinnie (Shradha Kapoor) a hair stylist and a bunch of their motley gang to participate in the International Hip Hop contest in Las Vegas.

Well as claimed in the beginning Remo D’souza’s story is inspired by a true story of a dance group from Nalasopara called “Ficticious”. ABCD 2 ReviewScreenplay is by Tushar Hiranandani & Remo himself, which does not give that impact though the story is awe inspiring saga of bunch of nobodies who become somebody. The screenplay emphasizes more on the dances than on the story making it look like a Dance reality show. It lacks the emotional quotient. There are too many tracks one of Vishnu and his family, one of Suresh and his dancer mother, a dancer Vinod who has some ailment but none of these tracks make any sense in the overall scheme of things and it just remains just a track to increase the run time. The characters are not fleshed out properly not even of the 3 principal characters Vishnu, Suresh and Vinnie. Overall the ABCD 2 becomes an array of dance events and nothing more.

Dialogues by Mayur Puri, is funny in some sequences but for most part of it the dialogues does not give the required punch especially in the confrontation sequences or emotional sequences and the sequence falls flat.

One thing that stands out is the choreography and the well mounted dance sequences. Rather it is the dance sequences which are the hero of the movie. Everyone knows Remo’s fascination for Hip Hop and he utilizes his love for the dance form in this movie. Choreography by Remo & Terence Lewis is extremely well executed and shot. Especially the “Ganaraya” song in the pre climax, the usage of Ganesh mantras in a Hip Hop form was the best fusion I have seen in recent time. The love song “If you hold my hand” shot at the Grand Canyon is very well executed and the usage of the 3D format particularly for this song is very well utilized. The Climax song is very well choreographed but I just hope the song was also up to the mark.

Performance wise the movie takes does not boast of any stand out performance, Prabhu Deva as Vishnu Sir Looks disinterested all throughout the movie. Varun Dhawan as Suresh tries very hard but gives a very average performance; he actually falls flat in the emotional sequences. Shradha’s portrayal of Vinnie remains average as well. Lauren Gattlieb as Olive is good in Dance sequences but the same cannot be said about her acting skills. Puneet as the deaf & dumb dancer Vinod and Dharmesh as the dancer from Gujarat still stand out with their performances as compared to the rest of the dancers. Tisca Chopra is wasted in a miniscule role of Vishnu’s wife. Pooja Batra as the owner of an Indian Restaurant does not have much to do than smiling in all the frames. Overall the movie is very weak in performances.

Music by Sachin-Jigar is as peppy and melodious as it was for ABCD. Some of the songs like “Chunar” sung by Arijit Singh is a stand out and so is the “Ganaraya” song which basically mixes Indian classical ragas with foot tapping sounds.

Remo wins brownie points for the well executed and choreographed songs, but fails in creating an overall impact especially due to the lack of story and absence of any emotional quotient or should I say not so well executed emotional sequences. Somewhere the movie does not connect and remains as I said earlier an array of well mounted dance sequences….

For dance lovers the movie is a treat but rest it is just an average dance movie….It will go with 2 and a half stars….

Movie Rating: 2.5 out of 5 stars (2.5 / 5)

If you have not seen the trailer yet, click the link below

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Movie Review : Dil Dhadakne Do

Dil Dhadakne Do: Redefining the Indian Family

Family entertainers in Bollywood reminds you of two names Rajshri Productions and Sooraj Barjatya, where the large family sings, dances, laughs and cries together with their “Sanskar” intact.

Zoya Akhtar’s “Dil Dhadakne Do” redefines the Indian family or should I say the Indian High Society family. Portraying the Mehra’s, Zoya dissects the hypocrisy, the fakeness and the make believe world the so called high society families live in.

First_Look_Poster_of_Dil_Dhadakne_DoDDD is primarily a story of the Mehra family, a rich Punjabi family from Delhi which is headed by Kamal Mehra (Anil Kapoor) the father, Neelam Mehra (Shefali Shah) the mother, Ayesha Mehra/Sanga (Priyanka Chopra) the daughterand Kabir Mehra (Ranveer Singh) the youngest son and heir to the Mehra Empire, not to forget the cute Pluto Mehra (Aamir Khan’s voice) the dog, who is the narrator as well.

So the plot unravels in the luxury cruise where the Mehra’s are celebrating 30 years of Kamal & Neelam Mehra’s, Wedding Anniversary with their friends, or should I say so called friends. How the skeletons of the Mehra family comes out of the closet, the so called business deals in the name of family ties, the bitchiness of the high society crème del a crème wives and the merry go round of relationships constituents the premise of DDD.

Story & Screenplay written by Zoya Akhtar & Reema Kagti emphasizes the relations and their complexities, how we fake in front of the world and how an Image in the society is more important than the feelings and relationship. But the biggest flaw of the movie is its pace. In an attempt to make it realistic somewhere the writers compromised on the pace. Another issue with the script was that it focused on too many issues of the heart and the end result was that none of the issues made any impact. But some sequences are so impactful that it remains with us long after the movie is over like the confrontation scene of Sunny and Manav, the pre climax hospital scene between Kabir and Neelam and all the sequences when Pluto is narrating the story. The one relationship which becomes the highlight of DDD is the relationship of the sibling Ayesha & Kabir, all their sequences do not have too many dialogues but their expressions said it all. The principal characters of Kamal, Neelam, Ayesha and Kabir are very well written, especially Kabir’s character which starts being a not so confident guy to a guy who comes on his own, the transition is shown beautifully. The screen time of 170 mins is another flaw, which could have been edited at least by 30 mins. The biggest flaw was the climax which according to me was NOT well defined and concluded.

The dialogues written by Farhan Akhtar is witty and yet impactful. Javed Akhtar’s dialogue of Pluto gives that necessary impact which was required.

The best USP of the movie are the performances, starting with Anil Kapoor who plays Kamal Mehra, his portrayal as the dominating, egoistic control freak yet weak and vulnerable when alone, is spot on and Anil yet again proves his mettle as a performer. Ayesha played by Priyanka Chopra was the most difficult role of the movie, a strong headed individual yet being loyal to her parents was not an easy portrayal, but Priyanka does it brilliantly and convincingly. Ranveer Singh’s portrayal of Kabir is the highlight of the movie, his portrayal goes through various layers and Ranveer portrays it seamlessly. Rather for the first time Ranveer’s scenes wherein he does not have any dialogues yet he creates an impact with his expression, I think this is Ranveer’s second best portrayal after “Band Bajaa Baraat” . I have to mention Pluto the dog, he was so cute that he remains in with you even when the movie gets over, and Aamir Khan’s voice over enhances the impact. Shefali Shah as Neelam Mehra gives the most restrained performance and it works wonders and makes her stand out in the ensemble cast, I must say Shefali is the most under rated and under used actress of Bollywood. Anushka Sharma as Farah Ali is wasted and her character is not only brief but does not add too much, she is decent in whatever she is given but does not create any impact. Farhan Akhtar as Sunny is a guest appearance role, but every sequences he over shadows the rest in the frame, Farhan’s aura is impeccable and I think one of the best guest appearance role in recent time. Rest of the cast comprising of Divya Seth, Manoj Pahwa, Parmeet Sethi, Rahul Bose, Zarina Wahab, newcomer Ridhima Sud, Vikram Massey, Ayesha Raza, Vandana Sajnani, Dolly Matoo everybody did an excellent job and enhanced the overall impact of the movie.

Carlos Catalan’s cinematography remains the highlight of DDD as it was for Zoya’s previous movies “Luck By Chance” & “Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara”, all sequences across India, Turkey, France, Italy, Spain and Tunisia has been captured beautifully and takes the movie a few notches higher.

Costume design by Arjun Bhasin, as usual is classy yet understated and apt for each character. Neil Patel’s Production design captures the mood of the movie well. The editing by Anand Subaya and Manan Mehta was the weakest; I think the editing could have been crisp.

Music by Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy is not that great excluding the title song and Galla Goodiyan song which has been picturised by Bosco-Ceaser well, the other song which has been well choreographed is “Girls can Swing”.

Zoya Akhtar scores high on performances that she has extracted from the ensemble cast but unfortunately fails in creating a cohesive screenplay and fails miserably in concluding the movie. I would say DDD is Zoya’s weakest film till date.

I would say a huge opportunity lost with such a crackling star cast if the screenplay would have been good then it would have a classic for sure….I will go with 3 stars (One additional star for the performances)…

Movie Rating: 3 out of 5 stars (3 / 5)

Watch the trailer

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Movie Review: Tanu Weds Manu Returns

Tanu Weds Manu Returns: Kangana’s show all the way…

tanu-fullsize-story_032315071434Some movies go beyond their expectations due the brilliant performances by the cast, ”Tanu Weds Manu returns” is one such movie wherein the performances not only camouflages the overall flaws but raises the standard of the movie.

Himanshu Sharma’s story of “Tanu Weds Manu Returns” starts four year hence Tanu & Manu’s marriage when domestic problems crop up and they decide to part ways, the story takes a turn when Manu (Madhavan) meets Tanu’s look alike Kusum a.k.a Datto (Kangana Ranaut) and decides to marry her, do Tanu & Manu sort out their differences and re-unite or they part ways forms the crux of the story.

Himanshu Sharma keeps the spirit intact in the sequel as well which was the USP of the first part. The screenplay and story explores the couple’s life after marriage. The screenplay is quite fast and engaging other than a few sequences like Komal’s kidnapping which has no relevance to the main story line. Second half the pace becomes a bit slow due to too many songs. Himanshu scores high in conceptualizing and writing the character of Datto which becomes the major highlight as well as the USP of the movie. Rest of the characters is repeated from the sequel. The love story between Manu & Datto is captured with sensitivity and innocence. Himanshu showcases two type of outlook towards women in our society, one that of Tanu’s family who though being from a small town are open minded towards their daughter, and on other side Datto’s family who though Datto being a successful athlete are orthodox of her choice of life partner.

It is the dialogues which is the biggest highlight of the movie. It is in sync with the flavor of a small town and it is witty and gives you the laughs and makes the movie engaging. Rather the dialogues by Himanshu kind of overcome the flaws of the screenplay.

Performance wise the movie scores the highest and the shining star is Kangana’s portrayal of both Tanu and Kusum a.k.a Datto, her portrayal of Tanu as the bohemian free spirited is an extension from the first part but it the portrayal of Datto, the Haryanvi athlete from Delhi University steals your heart. Kangana’s body language to her get up to her dialect of Datto everything is so spot on that you sometimes feel that it is being portrayed by a different actor, another award winning performance by Kangana. Madhavan as Manu underplays himself and acts mostly by his eyes, which was the most endearing part. Deepak Dobriyal out did himself with this movie as Pappi, though in the first part he does show the spark but in the sequel he excels so much that he overshadows other actors in the frame at times, definitely an excellent portrayal. Jimmy Shergill as Raja Bhaiya again gives a restrained performance; he is one actor who has been underutilized by Bollywood. Rajesh Sharma as Datto’s brother has a brief and gives an impactful performance. Mohammed Zeeshan Ayyub as Chintu shines in his brief undefined role. Rest of the cast consisting of Swara Bhaskar, Ejaz Khan, Rajendra Gupta, Navni Parihar, K K Raina, Dipti Mishra do a brilliant job…

Music which was the highlight of the prequel, does not disappoint us in the sequel as well, the highlight being “Banno” by the newbie Tanisk & Vayu and “Ghani Bawri” sung by Jyoti Nooran and the “Old School Girl” rendered by Kalpana Gandharv brings a smile to your face.

Anand L Rai has been successful in keeping the basic ethos of the movie and extracting out some of the best performances by the cast, especially by Kangana Ranaut. Anand’s major highlight has been capturing the stories from small towns and characters as well which connects with the viewers well, and he does not disappoint us with “Tanu Weds Manu Returns”…
A MUST watch… I will go with 4 stars….

Movie Rating: 4 out of 5 stars (4 / 5)

Watch the trailer

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Official Trailer : Hamari Adhuri Kahani

Hamari_Adhuri_Kahani_First_Look_PosterWith “Hamari Adhuri Kahani” Mahesh Bhatt  again goes in autobiographical mode for this story. It is based on the love story of his mother Shirin Mohammad Ali, father Nanabhai Bhatt and his step mother. Whenever Mahesh Bhatt has created a story out of his life it has been a remarkable effort. Remember Arth, Janam, Zakhm and Woh Lamhe. Well we hope that “Hamari Adhuri Kahani” also creates the same impact as it did with the previous movies.

It has an impressive cast of Emraan Hashmi, Vidya Balan, Rajkummar Rao, Sara Khan, Madhurima Tuli & Amala Akkineni in a cameo.

Directed by Mohit Suri who is riding high with super success of Aashiqui 2 & Ek Villain, can this movie create a hat trick from him, well we have to wait and watch.

The USP of Vishesh Film’s has been their music, and this movie also has music as its USP with tunes by Jeet Ganguli, Mithoon & Ami Mishra

Produced By Mahesh Bhatt & Mukesh Bhatt and presented by Fox Star Studios, the movie releases on 12th June’15….

The Official trailer gives us an impression of a movie with immense emotional content……let us see whether the viewers gives a Thumbs Up or Thumbs down to “Hamari Adhuri Kahani” on 12th June’15…

Movie Review : Bombay Velvet

Bombay Velvet: Nothing Jazzy about this Velvet

The much awaited Anurag Kashyap mega budget saga “Bombay Velvet” released this Friday. Looking at the track record of Anurag who breaks norms, the same was expected of “Bombay Velvet”. The movie was touted as the best neo noir movie of Bollywood.

But alas the bubble bust and “Bombay Velvet” based on the famous historian Gyan Prakash’s book “Bombay Fables” is just an ordinary movie which is high on the glamour quotient. The story captures the lives of two individuals Johnny (Ranbir Kapoor) and Rosie (Anushka Sharma) and their love story. Set in 1960’s Bombay it chronicles the events which actually made Bombay the Financial Capital of the country which it is today and how the lives changed for the people living in the city.

Screenplay written by Gyan Prakash & Anurag Kashyap and co-written by Vasan Bala & Thani oscillates from being a love story to being a Bombay Velvet Reviewmafia movie and the outcome is a complete chaos. The movie neither could justify being a love story nor being a mafia thriller. The flow of the screenplay is not smooth and looks as if the events were conceptualized in isolation and later put together. In a nutshell it lacks a story line and instead relies heavily on presentation and glamour. Too many characters without any proper graph are another issue with the writing. The second half is a drag and you just wait for the end to happen. Few sequences are stretched unnecessarily.

The dialogues are hardly impressive. It varies from being either serious to outright stupid making the plot more inconsistent.
It is the Production Design by Sonal Sawant which is the biggest highlight of the movie and actually overshadows other aspects. Every aspect is detailed and is flawless. The other highlight is the costume design by Niharika Khan. Every character’s costumes is detailed to the T, especially the costumes of Anushka during the Jazz performances are commendable. Another highlight which makes the movie a worth watch is the cinematography by Rajeev Ravi, he captures the Bombay of 60’s beautifully. Predominantly shot in Sepia tone, it complements the mood of the movie beautifully.

Editing by Prerna Saigal and Hollywood’s Thelma Schoonmaker is another flaw; it could have been more crisp and concise.
Amit Trivedi’s music is the most soothing factor of the movie. Amit’s jazz compositions will be remembered for a long time. Amiabh Bhattacharya’s lyrics go from being poetic to outright chessy what with words like “Dhadham Dhadham” in a song sequence meant to be sad sequence.

Performances by the ensemble cast make the movie bearable. Ranbir as Johnny the fickle minded, short tempered orphan does an earnest job, though I would not say this is his best performance but he tries very hard to overcome the short comings of the writing. Anushka as Rosie the jazz singer is a complete miscast. She lacked the oomph factor which was required for this role, though she brings the innocence but fails to create an overall impact. Karan Johar as the scheming and menacing Kaizad Khambatta does well in whatever was given to him, but looks visibly uncomfortable in the menacing acts. Kay Kay Menon though has a brief role of a detective, but he shines the most and overshadows others. The surprise package of the movie is Satyadeep Mishra as Chimman, Johnny’s best buddy. Satyadeep’s act is effortless and extremely impressive. Siddharth Basu as the Mayor struggles both in language and in performance. Manish Choudhary as Jimmy Mistry is impressive. Rest of the cast does a good job.

Anurag Kashyap ambition unfortunately did not match his vision, which resulted in “Bombay Velvet” being a wannabe mix of Martin Scorsesse and Quinton Tarrantino movie. Kashyap was not clear whether he wanted to make Broadway Musical or a Criminal Thriller or a quintessential love story, a huge disappointment by Anurag Kashyap. I will go with Two and a Half Stars…

Movie Rating: 2.5 out of 5 stars (2.5 / 5)

Movie Review : Piku

Piku: A “Mishti” Father Daughter relationship… Bong style

Shoojit Sircar right from his first film “Yahaan”(2005) has dabbled in distinct subjects which showcases our society in various forms. “Piku” looks at the father daughter relationship with a refreshing twist.

Juhi Chaturvedi after her impressive debut “Vicky Donor” comes up with a simple yet refreshing story of father daughter relationship. The Piku Movie Reviewplot is a simple tale of Father Bhaskor Banerjee (Amitabh Bachchan) a hypochondriac and his daughter Piku (Deepika Padukone). The story is essentially the bitter sweet of the father daughter relationship and going to one’s roots. The story does not have any conflicts nor any high voltage drama but still you fall in love with the movie and its characters.

Juhi compensates the wafer thin story with an engrossing screenplay of daily mundane father daughter squabbles and a road trip which changes the course of their respective lives. Every character has been written well whether it is the main lead or the domestic help Budhan. Every sequence is written with minutest details. The humor is subtle but it dominates the theme which is the most incredible quality of the screenplay. Where it fails albeit marginally is giving the story a conclusive end, rest it entertains and takes you back to the Hrishikesh Mukherjee and Basu Chatterjee genre of movies.

Dialogues it another big plus of the movie, Juhi Chaturvedi’s tongue and cheek dialogues complements the screenplay and takes the movie a notch higher.

Where the movie makes the biggest impact, it is its performances. Amitabh Bachchan as the quirky Bhashkor Banerjee is brilliant and is another feather in the superstar’s cap. To complement Amitabh’s act, Deepika as Piku gives a sterling performance by far her best till date. But it is Irrfan’s act as Rana Choudhary which steals the show, though a bit under played but Irrfan shines and how. Another highlight performance is Moushumi Chatterjee’s Chobi Mashi act, her free spirited performance makes you fall in love with the character, though it is a brief role. Other actors like Raghuvir Yadav, Jishu Sengupta, Balendra Singh, Swaroopa Ghosh give a good performance making it a worth watch.

Kamlajeet Negi’s camera work is simple yet captivating and complements the plot. Veera Kapur’s costumes are absolutely apt and done with minutest details.

Music by Anupam Roy flows with the narration and extremely soulful, though songs are at the back ground but helps in taking the plot further.

Shoojit Sircar again shows his mettle with “Piku” and yet again proves that to tell a good story you do not need a big canvas….
“Piku” is like a fresh air which rejuvenates and lingers in your memory long after it is over….A DEFINITE WATCH…I will go with Four & A Half Stars….

Movie Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars (4.5 / 5)

Movie Review: Gabbar Is Back

Gabbar Is Back: Old Bottle New Wine

Gabbar PosterWell as the name suggests “Gabbar Is Back” is your quintessential Bollywood action pot boiler albeit with a slight freshness in the presentation.

After the critically acclaimed “Baby”, Akshay Kumar is back playing what he is best at, an action hero who punches the goons, does somersaults and kicks in flying motion, in short our own Bollywood masala hero.

“Gabbar Is Back” is the remake of 2002 tamil hit “Ramanna” Directed & Written by A R Murugadoss. A R Murugadoss’s story does not have any new plot to offer, what with our lead Aditya (Akshay Kumar) plays soft hearted crusader who fights against corruption and punishes corrupt Govt. official with a pseudo name “Gabbar”.

The story & screenplay is extremely predictable, but there has been an effort with additional screenplay by Rajat Arora to make the screenplay more contemporary and to add flavor of Bollywood. A few sequences like hospital sequence or the initial kidnapping sequences makes the movie impactful in the first half but the freshness and nuance factor fades away in the second half. More cardboard characters are introduced including the arch typical villain Digvijay Patil (Suman Talwar). Especially the climax becomes too preachy.

Dialogues by Rajat Arora have nothing new to offer and sounds too pompous and extremely over the top.
It is the performance of Akshay Kumar as Aditya a.k.a “Gabbar” which binds the movie. Akshay is extremely comfortable playing the character and looks at ease which adds to the overall impact of the character. Shruti Hasan has a very brief role of a typical chirpy girl which she tries hard to make it look convincing and is successful to some extent. Suman Talwar as Digvijay Patil plays the arch typical villain with flaring nostrils and angry face, in nut shell nothing new. Jaideep Ahlawat as the CBI inspector Kuldeep Pahwa hams incessantly and literally shouts his dialogues. Sunil Grover as Sadhuram puts an honest effort and gives us a convincing performance. Not much to be said of the rest of the cast.

Krish ,the debutant director in Hindi films who is big name of Telugu movies, fails to do complete justice and the stale story & screenplay did not help as well. Where Krish scores is in the overall presentation which has a slight freshness….

The rest of the technical team does not impress too much….Even the production value is low considering the movie coming from Bhansali Productions which is known for its opulent production value…

If you are a diehard Akshay Kumar fan then you may like the movie, others please wait for the television premiere…I will go with Two & a Half Star….

Movie Rating: 2.5 out of 5 stars (2.5 / 5)

Official Trailer : ABCD 2

Remo D’Souza continues Vishnu Sir’s (Prabhu Deva) journey in ABCD 2, which is a step up on the first part ABCD in terms of scale and grandness…


This installment the cast comprises of Varun Dhawan & Shradha Kapoor playing the main lead as Suresh and Vinnie. Prabhu Deva repeats his act of Vishnu Sir and from the first part Dharmesh Yelande and Lauren Gottlieb are repeated along with Allu Arjun in cameo, Raghav Juyal and Prachi Shah…

Shot in US, Las Vegas and Mumbai the movie definitely looks sleek and the choreography as per the promo looks good…

Remo repeats his writing team from “ABCD”, Tushar Hiranandani writing the screenplay and dialogues by Mayur Puri….

Music again we have Sachin-Jigar scoring the music, this is their third association with Remo starting with  “FALTU” and  “ABCD” , now “ABCD 2”…expecting another foot taping music by Sachin-Jigar for this movie as well…

ABCD 2 is Produced by Disney and distributed by UTV Motion Pictures

Be ready for the Dance Musical Extravaganza from Remo D’Souza  on 19th June’15….

Till then enjoy the Official Trailer….

Official Trailer : Tanu Weds Manu Returns

After the surprise hit of “Tanu weds Manu” in 2011,  Anand L Rai and the makers decided to continue with couples journey in a sequel and hence “Tanu Weds Manu Returns” was conceptualized with Kangana Ranaut playing a double role of Tanu (Tanuja Trivedi ) from the first part and the Haryanvi athlete Kusum Sangwan with  Madhavan reprising his role as Manu Sharma again….tanu-fullsize-story_032315071434

Written by Himanshu Sharma the movie starts from where the first part ends and takes a look at Tanu & Manu’s life post marriage and the marriage issues that subsequently crop up.

Other than the main lead the rest of the cast comprises of Jimmy Shergil, Deepak Dobriyal, Swara Bhaskar, Ejaz Khan, Navni Parihar, Mohammed Zeeshan Ayub & Rajeev Gupta…

Music is being scored by Tanishk-Vayu Krsna again after the success of the music of first part….

Looking at the promo it seems Kangana will have another ace up her sleeve and Anand L Rai has another winner after the successful “Tanu Weds Manu” and “Ranjhanaa”…..

Produced by Anand L Rai & Kishore Lulla and presented under the banner of Eros International….the movie releases on May 22nd 2015…..


Official Trailer : Dil Dhadakne Do

Well “Dil Dhadakne Do” is the most awaited movie of the year 2015, thanks to the ensemble star cast of Anil Kapoor, Priyanka Chopra, Farhan Akhtar, Ranveer Singh, Anushka Sharma , Shefali shah & Rahul Bose….Phew isn’t it exciting well the original cast was more exciting what with Anil Kapoor, Ranbir Kapoor, Hrithik Roshan, Kareena Kapoor, Katrina Kaif and Madhuri Dixit…well things did not work out and excluding Anil Kapoor the entire cast was changed….


Zoya Akhtar after her critically acclaimed “Luck By Chance” and her successful road movie “Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara” comes up with her latest “Dil Dhadakne Do” a story on relationships.

The story written by Zoya Akhtar & Reema Kagti tells us the story of the dysfunctional Mehra family who plan to reconnect with each other on a cruise. The dialogues have been written by Farhan Akhtar so expect some witty dialogues and additional dialogues by Javed Akhtar promise the poetry as well…

Zoya repeats her favorite Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy for music, so expect another chart buster album from the trio

Produced by JungleePictures and Excel Entertainment, distributed by Eros International the movie releases on June 5th, 2015….

The official trailer looks quite promising and looks like Zoya has another winner…..

Movie Review : Byomkesh Bakshy

Detective Byomkesh Bakshy: Bollywood’s first well mounted detective flick

In Bollywood you do not have many detective flicks as compared to the regional cinema, especially Bengali wherein Feluda, Byomkesh Bakshy & Kaka Moni has been adapted for silver screen and detective flicks are quite common.

Dibakar Banerjee adapt the famous detective from Bengali literature Byomkesh Bakshy created by Sharadindu Bandhopadhyay and merges three Sharadindu Bandhopadhyay’s stories of Byomkesh Bakshy, Satyanweshi, Pother Kanta & Arthamanartham.

The movie creates the riveting story set in 1942 Calcutta in the midst of War. Byomkesh Bakshy (Sushant Singh Rajput) who is just out of Detective Byomkesh Bakshycollege and jobless is approached by Ajit Bandhopadhyay (Anand Tiwari) to help him find his missing father. Byomkesh agrees to help Ajit, and then starts a web of conspiracy and Byomkesh unravels a sinister plot of destroying Calcutta.

The screenplay written by Dibakar Banerjee & Urmi Juvekar has many twists and keeps your mind guessing. Especially the first half the story flows smoothly with a high interval point. Where Dibakar loses the plot is in the second half where he tries to merge many plots and ends up confusing the viewers. Another issue with the narration is its pace, at many points the movie slows down in pace which should not have been the case, especially all the sequences of Byomkesh and the movie actress Angoori Devi. Still I must say Dibakar has been successful to a great extent in creating the tension and suspense which is the prime ingredient of any thriller.

Dialogues written by Dibakar Banerjee & Urmi Juvekar is realistic and the dialect has been kept keeping in mind the era the movie is based. Thank God that the movie does not show the Chinese and Japanese speaking in Hindi when they are speaking amongst them. Dibakar keeps it in Chinese and Japanese with English sub titles, I think he should have also added Hindi sub titles as well.
There are four major reasons which take the movie many notches high.

First being the performances. Honey Trehan the casting director has done a brilliant job of aptly casting actors who suit the role and have performed brilliantly. Starting with Sushant Singh Rajput who has the title role of Byomkesh Bakshy, he is completely in sync with the character, right from the looks to the language to the body language; every aspect has been researched and portrayed brilliantly by Sushant. I must say that Sushant is improving leaps and bounds with every movie. Swastika Mukherjee, an export from Bengali movies, debuts in Bollywood as Angoori Devi the movie actress, who brings the oomph factor in the movie. Swastika is Mata Hari personified and does a brilliant job of a seductress. Her looks, her way of speaking, her mysterious gait everything is spot on, she shines with her performance. One actor who steals the show is Neeraj Kabi who plays Dr. Anukul Guha, he is brilliant in every frame that he is in and steals the thunder from other actors in the frame, I must say a stellar performance. Anand Tiwari as Ajit, Byomkesh’s friend is another actor who shines with his excellent portrayal. Divya Menon who debuts as Stayawati in the movie, shows confidence and makes an impressive debut. The rest of the cast Meiyang Chang, Kaushik Ghosh, Takanori Kikuchi, Mark Bennington do a brilliant job.

Second being Nikos Andritsakis’s cinematography which captures 1940’s India and Calcutta with élan. Right from the by lanes of old Calcutta to the high profile clubs to the hustle bustle of the city; everything has been captured brilliantly and gives the movie a certain edge with its visuals.

Third being the production design by Vandana Kataria. She re-created 1940’s Calcutta with minutest details, right from the props to the trams to the vintage cars and even the billboards and ads in shops everything is well researched. You will not feel that it is a created movie set; it is so natural and realistic.

Fourth being the costume design by Manish Malhotra, Manoshi Nath & Rushi Sharma. The look of every character right from the clothes to the way they look everything is well researched and blends with the narration.

Dibakar Banerjee I must say does a decent job in creating the world of Byomkesh Bakshy to near perfection. A little bit of a tighter script would have made it a classic. For a movie which is a few notch lower than a classic with Three & a Half Star.

Movie Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars (3.5 / 5)

Watch the trailer : [su_posts id=”863″ posts_per_page=”1″ tax_operator=”0″ order=”desc”]

Official Trailer : Mr X

Mr XVikram Bhatt can be rechristened as the 3D director, off late all his movies have been in 3D format. But there is one exception for Mr X, Vikram Bhatt takes a break from the horror genre and tries his hand in Sci-Fi thriller genre.

Produced by Vishesh Films and written by Shagufta Rafiq, Mr X is the story of this righteous cop Raghuram Rathod played by Emraan Hashmi who gets frustrated by the law & order condition. He gets a potion of invisibility and he starts using it to teach the criminals a lesson.

The movie stars Emraan Hashmi in the lead with Amyra Dastur and Arunoday Singh.

Music has been a strong point of Vishesh Films, and this time as well they have not kept any stone unturned and signed their favorites Jeet Ganguli and Ankit Tiwari to score the music.

Cinematography by Pravin Bhatt the movie is looking quite sleek for a Vishesh Films banner film.

The promo reminds us of “Hollow Man” and the CGX is also done well which would be enhanced in 3D format. Well the fate of the movie will only be decided when it releases on 17th April’15….till then enjoy the Official Trailer….

Official Trailer : Piku

Piku is Shoojit Sircar’s next offering having an impressive ensemble cast of Amitabh Bachchan, Deepika Padukone, Irrfan Khan, Moushumi Chatterjee, Jeeshu Sengupta & Raghuvir Yadav…Piku Trailer

Written by Juhi Chaturvedi  (Vicky Donor fame)….Piku is a story of father daughter relationship, an eccentric father being played by Amitabh Bachchan and daughter “Piku” being played by Deepika Padukone. This is the second time that Amitabh and Deepika play father and daughter after “Aarakshan” (2011)….

Piku marks the Bollywood debut of Anupam Roy, a song writer and composer from Bengali cinema. Looking at his track record of Anupam we expect a good album…

Produced by MSM Motion Pictures (Sony Entertainment Television’s movie wing), Rising Sun Films (Founder Shoojit Sircar & Ronnie Lahiri) & Saraswati Entertainment Creations Ltd…and distributed by Yashraj Films….

Gauging by the trailer of “Piku” looks like an entertaining look at human bond and emotions….

Piku releases on 8th May’2015…..

Movie Review : Hunterr

Hunterr: A true Sex comedy of Bollywood which is not cheap or crass

Bollywood has been shying away from the genre of “Sex Comedy” for quite some time. Literally the first being “Grand Masti” in 2013, but it was crass and extremely irritating in the name of comedy.Hunterrr-Movie-Poster

But “Hunterr” tries to break the shackles of an arch typical Bollywood format of this genre and makes it more realistic and yet funny. Harsvardhan Kulkarni explores this genre through his Hunterr Mandar Pongshe (Gulshan Devaiah) who is a compulsive “Vasu” or in other words a person who has this compulsive urge to make love to any woman. The story explores Mandar’s journey right from his childhood when he first learnt of birds & bees to early thirties when he going to get married to Tripti (Radhika Apte). The story explores his escapades with women in his life and how his conscience awakes forms the rest of the story…..

Writer & Director Harshvardhan Kulkarni tries to make his debut as a director through a story and script which if not handled with care may derail and become crassly. But Harshvardhan successfully makes it realistic and refrains from being crassly with double meaning dialogues. The main issue is with the narration when the story switches from his childhood to his present day to a few months earlier which majorly disrupts the overall narration. Other issue of the movie is its climax which happens almost abruptly. The characters are very well written and all the female characters are shown as strong individuals who do not have any inhibitions to do what they want like the two main characters Tripti & Jyotsna.

The sequences are very realistic and a lot of people will actually identify with their adolescent days, especially men. The dialogues act as a beautiful wrapper on the script and does not sound crassly and double meaning. Rather the dialogues are very blunt and on your face.

Gulshan Devaiah as Mandar is so convincing that you may think that he is “Vaasu” in real life as well. Gulshan depicts the various ages of Mandar with élan, in short he is brilliant and the real spark of the movie. Radhika Apte as Tripti gives another power packed performance of a woman of today who knows and is aware for her needs. Sai Tamhankar portrays Jyotsna, Mandar’s neighbor with such brilliance that you sympathize with her at the end even after her having an extra marital affair with Mandar. Veera Saxena as Parul is the only weak portrayal in the movie but she somehow manages. In a brief role Rachel D’Souza as Shobha creates an impact. Other cast like Neena Kulkarni, Sagar Deshmukh, Suraj Jagan also give a stellar performances.

Music by Khamosh Shah is worth mentioning. The soundtrack has a lot of variety in genres, so you have “Hunter 303” in 80’s style disco mode sung by Bappi Lahiri which has become an instant hit, the romantic “Naina” & “Chori Chori” is equally hummable and the cherry on the cake is Altaf Raja rendered “Dil Lagana” which transports you to the 90’s. Overall the songs do not pose as hindrance but blends well with the narration.

Harshvardhan creates an impact with his debut, it is the narration which makes it less than brilliant. But I must say an impressive debut by Harshvardhan Kulkarni. I will go with 3 stars….

Movie Rating: 3 out of 5 stars (3 / 5)


Trailer : Bombay Velvet

Anurag Kashyap is ready with his most ambitious, first mega project “Bombay Velvet”, based on Gyan Prakash’s novel “Mumbai Fables”.

Set in the 1960’s Bombay (and not Mumbai) this neo noir Romantic thriller tells the love story of a boxer Johnny Balraj (played by Ranbir Bombay Velvet TrailerKapoor) and jazz singer Rosie (played by Anushka Sharma) who works for a club Bombay Velvet, run by media mughal Kaizad Khambatta (Played by Karan Johar).

There are too many firsts in the movie, this is Anurag Kashyap’s first mega budget movie, going by the looks in the promos it looks quite stylish for a Anurag Kashyap movie, Karan Johar debuts as an antagonist for the first time (it will be interesting to see how he pulls off), this is Ranbir Kapoor’s first dark movie, all in all “Bombay Velvet” is a much awaited movie of the year.

Produced by Fox Star Studios and Phantom this mega budget movie has music by Amit Trivedi and lyrics by Amitabh Bhattacharya.

Looking at the promo of “Bombay Velvet” the whole look of the movie has been inspired heavily by neo noir Hollywood movie “LA Confidential” and some shades of “Godfather”.

Whatever maybe the case “Bombay Velvet” is undoubtedly a movie to watch out for…..and your wait ends 15th May’15…..till then enjoy the promo…..

Movie Review : NH10

NH 10: Gritty, Gruesome & Edge of the seat Thriller

NH10 PosterWe are in 2015 but rural India still reels in the shadow of bygone tradition and beliefs.NCR is a true picture of such India. Gurgaon which houses the best of MNC’s , Malls and plush housing societies just beyond that prevails a India where Honor Killing is not considered a crime and looked upon with a lot of pride. Well the same is the case with other A & B grade cities of India which epitomizes modern India but beyond it is still the old India which is as backward in thoughts as it was ages ago.

Navdeep Singh with writer Sudip Sharma shows the real & stark face of rural India through the eyes of the couple Meera (Anushka Sharma) & Arjun (Neil Bhoopalam). The couple plan a weekend away from the hustle and bustle of the city are in for a shock when their weekend plan falls through as they are drawn into a fight with the local goons.

Sudip Sharma’s script is fast and racy and keeps the audience on the edge of the seat. It is definitely not for the faint hearted because the killings are on your face and make you cringe in your seat but Sudip with the pace, kind of makes up for the gruesomeness. Some sequences make you think whether women are really safe in modern India. The main characters are well written but it is the support cast which lacks the depth due to half baked character development by Sudip. You tend to wonder how are the characters related especially the accompanists of the main goon Satbir (Darshan Kumaar) as they are not fleshed out properly. Some characters are a bit of stereotype which somewhere mars the originality. For the climax Sudip and director Navdeep Singh keeps it open ended for the audience to decide without giving any judgment.

The dialogues are dipped in authenticity with the correct accent and language, and it is not preachy with melodrama.
NH10 goes several notches higher due to the brilliant performances by the ensemble cast. Starting with Anushka Sharma who plays Meera a creative director of an Ad Agency, epitomizing the modern day woman who is independent yet fierce fully protective about her family, was quite a difficult role both physically and mentally as she is there right from the first frame to the last frame but she does it with élan and gives a crackling performance, her best till date. Neil Bhoopalam who plays Arjun an IT professional who is so full of ego that he does not care of his wife and goes ahead to fight with the goons to satisfy his ego. Arjun is definitely a complex character which Neil portrays convincingly and brilliantly. The surprise package of NH10 is Darshan Kumaar who plays the main goon Satbir. After playing the supportive husband in “Mary Kom”, Satbir’s character is a complete opposite for Darshan, but he gives his 100% and it shows, right from the accent to the body language to the demeanor he gets it right to the minutest of details. Deepti Naval in cameo of Ammaji, as usual does not disappoint, yet she again proves what a great actress she is….Another actor Ravi Jhankal as Mamaji performs well, an actor who has been around for long but not given enough chances….

To make the proceedings of the movie more gritty Arvind Kannabiran’s cinematography played a crucial role by capturing the ruggedness of the country side realistically and making the correct divide between Gurgaon high rise and the Haryana country side. Action by Armin Sauer & Abdul Salaam Ansari is too realistic and at times gruesome but I must say effective because reality is not that rosy. But I felt the editing could have been crisper by Jabeen Merchant.

Naveen Singh after a fantastic “Manorama Six Feet Under” does impress with “NH10”, albeit falls prey to a few Bollywood stereotypes which takes away a bit of originality which was the USP of his previous movie. NH10 may not be another Manorama but it definitely is a brilliant effort by Navdeep Singh especially the performances which were A class…

I must say for Anushka Sharma who is just 7 movies old, becoming a producer and that to with such a hard hitting subject really needs guts and kudos to her for doing so…

I would go with 3 and a Half Stars….

Movie Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars (3.5 / 5)


Movie Review : Dum Laga Ke Haisha

Dum Laga Ke Haisha: Has the “Dum” of a complete Entertainer

Yash Raj Films have lately digressed from big budget blockbusters and concentrated on small budget movies with content like “Mardaani”, “Bewakoofian” and now “Dum Laga Ke Haisha”.

Dum-Laga-Ke-Haisha-MovieSome movies come like a whiff of freshness and bowl you over and bring a smile on your face, “Dum Laga Ke Haisha” is one such movie. Set in 1995 Haridwar it transports you to the world of 90’s aptly when Kumar Sanu was the nation’s favorite singer, so is Prem Prakash Tiwari (Ayushman Khurana) who is 10th fail but has a small business of selling cassettes in the by lane of Haridwar, who gets married to Sandhya (Bhumi Pednekar) on his father Chandrabhan Tiwari (Sanjay Mishra) insistence. The only problem is that Sandhya is double of Prem’s size which causes an embarrassment for Prem. How Prem and Sandhya come together and fall in love forms the rest of the story.

Sharat Kataria brings the freshness in the script and still keeps it realistic. Sharat beautifully sketches the main protagonist Prem & Sandhya well. Prem a guy who is good looking but low in confidence and esteem and completely under his father’s influence on the other hand Sandhya who is fat but has no qualms about her weight and is a confident girl. This is where Sharat successfully brings the freshness. Another aspect which stands out in the script is the well etched characters whether it is character of Prem’s father or his mother or his aunt. Some sequences stand out like the fight between Sandhya and Prem through songs of the 90’s. It is the second half which falls prey of a typical Bollywood format and loses its freshness to some extent.

The dialogues are realistic as well as hilarious which lifts the screenplay. Commendable is the way the dialect and the accent have been incorporated in the dialogues.

But what stands out and makes “Dum Laga Ke Haisha” a worth watch are its performances. Ayushman Khurana as Prem Prakash Tiwari is brilliant and gives a stellar performance after his debut “Vicky Donor”. Ayushman successfully captures the nuances of a low confident loser right from the accent to the body language which totally justifies his character of a small town. Debutant Bhumi Pednekar as Sandhya is crackling and shows a spark. Sanjay Mishra as Prem’s father shines and again shows his mettle as a fine actor. Other actors like Seema Pahwa, Alka Amin, Sheeba Chaddha and the rest of the cast do a brilliant job and make the movie worth a watch.

Other departments also impresses whether it is the cinematography by Manu Anand who captures Haridwar beautifully or Production Designer Meenal Agarwal who gets all the nuances right or Darshan Jalan’s Costume design which takes you back to the world of baggie pants and printed shirts.

Music by Anu Mallik is titillating from melodies of 90’s “Tu” and “Dard Karara” to the serene “Moh Moh Ke Dhaage” & “Sundar Susheel” or the sufi touch of “Dum Laga ke Haisha”, all the songs are worth a listen. Do not miss the last song in the credit “Dard Karara” choreographed by Chinni Prakash, which takes you to the days of 90’s when the songs had extras dressed in identical costumes and over the top steps.

Sharat Kataria tough his debut “10 ML Love” which went unnoticed, but he proves his point as a director with this movie and he impresses to a large extent.

Overall “Dum Laga ke Haisha” succeeds in the main purpose of entertaining and which makes you smile at the end… A movie worth of Four Stars….

Movie Rating: 4 out of 5 stars (4 / 5)

Movie Review : Badlapur

Badlapur: A lukewarm revenge drama

Shriram Raghvan’s fascination for dark thrillers is a known fact what with his previous movies Ek Hasina Thi & Jhonny Gaddar. He continues his fascination for the same with Badlapur.

The basic premise has many layers and Shriram Raghvan along with writer Arijit Biswas try to show the psychological side of revenge as to Badlapur Movie Reviewhow a Advertising Professional Raghav (Varun Dhawan) becomes psychotic after his wife Misha (Yami Gautam) and kid Robin get killed in a bank robbery and he plans to avenge the killers.

The basic message that Shriram wanted to portray was how revenge makes a normal human being act like an animal and in his rage he commits crimes which he does not want. This he portrayed through his two principal characters Liak (Nawazuddin Siddiqui) who commits the bank robbery and kills Raghav’s wife and kid and on the other side Raghav who in his madness to take revenge commits a crime which was not intended.

Every character in the movie is very well etched and very complex, but where the movie looses is its weak narration and slow pace. The 134 mins movie could have been trimmed at least by 15 to 20 mins to create more impact. Though the climax has a message but the overall narration does not create an impact. The first half shows promise and you expect some twist in the second half which unfortunately does not come and results in a half baked second half. I felt in some sequences the blood quotient was too stark than required.

It is the performances which is the biggest highlight of the movie, Varun Dhawan as Raghav tries to do a role which was different from his previous movies and succeeds to a large extent especially in sequences where he underplays his anger. The best performance is undoubtedly of Nawazuddin Siddiqui who plays the antagonist Liak with such perfection that he overshadows everybody in the frame. Huma Qureshi as the prostitute Jhimli gives another riveting performance. Yami Gautam as Misha has nothing much to do. Radhika Apte as Kanchan is good but could have been better, rather she looks quite jaded. Divya Dutta as Shobha the social worker has nothing much to do but still she shines in her brief role. Kumud Mishra, a brilliant actor but underrated by Bollywood shines in the role of the inspector who investigates the bank Robbery. Rest of the cast like Ashwini Kalsekar, Pratima Kazmi, Vinay Pathak do a brilliant job in their brief roles and makes the movie a worth watch.

Music by Sachin Jigar is melodious, especially Jeena Jeena & the rock Jee Karda. Anil Mehta’s brilliance shines through the magical cinematography which captures the suburbs well….

Shriram Raghavan gets the premise right but fails in making it an impactful narration which was the biggest flaw. The pace in the second half is so slow that you want the movie to end.

I will go with Two & a Half stars….

Movie Rating: 2.5 out of 5 stars (2.5 / 5)

Movie Review : Roy

Roy: No joy in this Roy

It is good to see that story telling in Bollywood is changing and film makers are trying different subjects and Roy Posterdifferent formats of storytelling. But being different does not mean that the entertainment quotient is missing or the pace needs to be slow.

Vikramjit Singh the debutant director and writer of Roy completely loose the plot in being different. Roy tells the story of hot shot film maker Kabir (Arjun Rampal) who is not only known for his successful movies but also for his Casanova ways and his link ups. While making his third movie he meets Ayesha (Jacqueline Fernandez) a British film maker while shooting his movie in Malaysia and falls in love. As a film maker he gets the writer’s block in scripting his movie which is based on a thief ROY (Ranbir Kapoor). Somewhere Kabir’s personal life starts reflecting in the script and what happens when Kabir gets entangled in the web of real life and his imaginary life of his movie forms the crux of the rest of the movie.

Vikramjit’s concept is different and very complex and trying such a movie in itself is a big task. But where Vikram jit fails as a writer is his inability to execute the idea both as a story and screenplay. The story had an inherent flaw of being completely abstract and the screenplay pulls down the movie further. The 147 min movie is extremely slow and does not pick up at all; being a thriller this is the biggest flaw. Secondly the audience keeps on expecting some twist but every time it disappoints and the climax completely falls flat. The movie fails in the genre that it belonged, a thriller.

The dialogues again written by Vikramjit and Hussain Dalal is good in some sequences and it does not makes any sense in some and sounds too preachy and completely out of sync.

Performance wise Arjun Rampal as Kabir does complete justice and his earnestness shows. Ranbir Kapoor looks extremely out of sync and completely disinterested in his portrayal of the thief Roy, in some sequences he looks visibly uncomfortable. I think this is one of the weakest performances of Ranbir Kapoor after Besharam, it was sad to see Ranbir not being upto the mark. The bright spot of the movie is Jacqueline Fernandez’s portrayal of both Ayesha as well as Tia. She looked extremely glamorous and shows a huge improvement as a performer. Shernaz Patel, Rajit Kapoor & Anupam Kher are wasted completely in insignificant roles and cameos. Rest of the cast hardly has anything to contribute.

Himman Dhamija’s cinematography is so mesmerizing and he has captured Malaysia so well that you would plan your next vacation at Malaysia. The next strong point of the movie is its music by Amaal Mallik, Meet Bros & Ankit Tiwari. The music is melodious and has been beautifully choreographed by Ahmed Khan.

As a film maker Vikramjit Singh presents the movie with enough gloss & glamour and style, but unfortunately only these elements do not make a Good movie. As a debut film Vikramjit had a fabulous cast and equally good technical team. Even Vikramjit’s overall concept was also fresh and new for Bollywood but he completely wastes this opportunity with a weak story and an extremely slow paced screenplay. I will go with 2 stars…

Movie Rating: 2 out of 5 stars (2 / 5)

Movie Review : Shamitabh

Shamitabh: A good concept but an average execution stops it from becoming a classic

R Balki’s movie has been different in concept and content right from his first film “Cheeni Kum” and then “Paa”. Balki is also responsible for presenting Amitabh is various avatars and with “Shamitabh” he continues with his endeavor with a new concept and again presenting Amitabh in a different avatar.

Written by Balki the concept of the movie is unique and tells us the story of a dumb actor Danish (Dhanush) who wants to make it big in Shamithah ReviewBollywood but his handicap of being dumb fails him every time till he meets Akshara (Akshara Hasan) who is an AD and who sees a potential in Danish and helps him medically to solve his problem of speech but even after the surgery they still have an issue of a voice for Danish. After an extensive search they come across Amitabh Sinha (Amitabh Bachchan) who is convinced by Akshara to become the voice of Danish and hence the Star “Shamitabh” is born, what happens after Danish becomes Shamitabh forms the rest of the movie.

The concept is new but the screenplay fails to justify the unique concept as the pace becomes slow in parts and some of the sequences look too convenient to take the movie ahead like the sequence of how Akshara & Danish discover Amitabh which looks too clichéd. The good part of the script is that the all the three protagonists Danish, Akshara & Amitabh are etched out well and some sequences especially between Dhanush and Amitabh Bachchan are the highlight of the movie. The main highlight of the script is the chemistry between the two protagonist Danish & Amitabh. The main flaw is the climax which looked quite hurried and the movie ends abruptly keeping many questions unanswered. Another flaw is that some sequences are stretched unnecessarily slowing the pace.

The performances are the highlight of the movie and makes it watchable. Amitabh Bachchan as Amitabh Sinha is good and it showed on screen that he enjoyed playing the role. Dhanush as the dumb actor Danish excels and rises above the script in his portrayal. The chemistry of Dhanush and Amitabh Bachchan is the highlight of the movie. Debutant Akshara Hasan is impressive but she needs to work on her diction and dialogue delivery. Rest of the cast is impressive.

P C Sreeram as usual is top notch. Music by Illaiyaraja sounds fresh though most of the songs are situational.
Balki with such a brilliant idea could have done wonders but he falls short in executing the idea on the silver screen. Rather at the end it seemed that Balki was confused on how to end the movie and it showed. I will go with 3 stars…

Movie Rating: 3 out of 5 stars (3 / 5)

Movie Review : Hawaizaada

Hawaizaada: A flight that never takes off

Biopics are in vogue in Bollywood and “Hawaizaada” is yet another biopic of the first man to fly in a 8 years before04-hawaizaada Wright Brothers did so, and he was an Indian.

“Hawaizaada” is the story of Shivkar Bapuji Talpade who built a flying machine and was the first man to fly in 1895.
Written by Vibhu Puri & Saurabh Bhave, the screenplay tells the story of Shivkar Bapuji Talpade (Ayushman Khurana) who with the help of his mentor Shastryji (Mithun Chakraborty) and through many struggle and tribulation is successful in making the first flying machine and also the first man to fly.

The plot is interesting but unfortunately the screenplay does not do justice to the plot. More than half of the first part is spent on establishing the love story between Shivkar and the nautch girl Sitara (Pallavi Sharda) but in vain. The love story fails miserably to connect and the nonexistent chemistry between the lead actors does not help either. Later part of the screenplay explores how Shivkar makes the flying machine but here again the lack of research for the subject makes it weak and too fairy tale. And too many songs do not help the pace either. The pace is extremely slow and the characters look too cardboard type with a lack of realism which is a must if we are dealing with a biopic or something from the history. The British characters look like caricatures. Some characters are unnecessary and does not make any sense to the overall plot.

The dialogues look too forced upon and does not gel with the time (1895). Even the dialect used is too inconsistent. The English dialogues sound amateurish and unintentionally funny.

Casting wise Ayushman Khurana as Shivkar Talpade is a miscast as he fails to bring that seriousness to the character and does not connect. In a nutshell Ayushman’s performance is quite ordinary. Pallavi Sharda as Sitara only increases the glamour quotient; otherwise she is the most misfit amongst all the characters. It is Mithun’s portrayal of Shastriji which is still up to the mark. But the real show stopper is the child artist Naman Jain as Narayan whose sincere performance is the highlight of the movie. Other actors like Jayant Kriplani, Lusheen Dubey are wasted.

The two major highlights of the movie are the Cinematography by Savita Singh and the production design by Subrata Chakraborty & Amit Ray. Savita Singh’s camera work creates the magic of the era with élan and every shot is like a portrait. Subrata Chakraboty and Amit Ray’s production design enhances the era. Every prop has been well researched and placed well.

Music by Rochak Kohli, Mangesh Dhakde, Ayushman Khurana & Guest Composer Vishal Bharadwaj is good and the instrumentation is as per the era shown. But too many songs reduce the impact and relevance in the plot.

Vibhu Puri’s direction is inconsistent; he neither has been successful in creating a good biopic neither a love story. The lack of research on the subject is quite blatantly visible.

Vibhu had everything going for him with a lavishly mounted movie and equally good set of actors but alas he fails to create the necessary impact. I would say an opportunity lost. I will go with 2 stars….

Movie Rating: 2 out of 5 stars (2 / 5)

Movie Review: Khamoshiyan

Khamoshiyan: A Silence which is below average & equally amateurish

khamoshiyan-poster2The Bhatts have created a successful model of making profit making movie propositions and “Khamoshiyan” is one such attempt of combining erotica with horror with melodious music, a formula they have mastered since “Raaz” (2001).

Written by Mahesh Bhatt’s protégé Vikram Bhatt “Khamoshiyan” is a lame attempt in the horror genre, which basically is a three character story of Kabir (Ali Fazal) a fallen writer who wants regain his glory and hence he heads to Kashmir in search of a new plot for his story and ends up in a cottage run by a mysterious lady Meera (Sapna Pabbi). Meera has her husband Jaidev (Gurmeet Singh) who is bedridden. Their life changes with super natural happenings.

The story is too feeble and the screenplay is more feeble for a 122 minutes run. Vikram Bhatt tries the same old combination of erotica and horror but fails miserably. There are no scary moments and the erotic sequences are unnecessarily put in, to increase the oomph factor. The so called horror sequences are predictable and look amateurish. The main issue of the plot is that it oscillates between being a erotic love story and horror and fails in both.

The star cast primarily comprising of only 3 actors Ali Fazal, Gurmeet Singh & Sapna Pabbi and their performances are below average. Ali Fazal as Kabir looks completely confused all throughout the movie but is sincere in his attempt but the screenplay and underdeveloped character pulls him down. Debutant Sapna Pabbi who plays the mysterious Meera looks dazed and has a single expression of frown till the end, her dialect as well is below average, and she has to really work hard if she wants to continue in Bollywood. The worst among the three is TV actor turned bollywood actor Gurmeet Singh who was supposed to play the villain Jaidev and also give the scares as well but falls flats both in the portrayal as well as in the writing.

The only good thing to write about “Khamoshiyan” is its music by Jeet Ganguly, Naved Jaffar, Ankit Tiwari & Bobby Imran. Special mention of the title track composed by Jeet Ganguly and sung by Arijit Singh. The Cinematography by Nigam Bomzan captures South Africa shown as Kashmir quite well.

Debutant director Karan Darra fails to make an impact with his direction and the confused plot does not help either. In a nutshell “Khamoshiyan” is a half baked attempt which does not impress at all. I will go with One and a Half star…..

Movie Rating: 1.5 out of 5 stars (1.5 / 5)

Official Trailer : Detective Byomkesh Bakshy

Detective Byomkesh Bakshy- Synopsis

Yash Raj Films has lately tried to dabble in various genres and in their attempt to do something different they have
come up with the Bollywood adaptation of the fictional detective Byomkesh Bakshi created  & written by Sharadindu Bandopadhyay.


Named on the character itself “Detective Byomkesh Bakshy” is directed by Dibakar Banerjee. This would be Dibakar’s  first attempt in crime thriller. The adapted screenplay has been written by Dibakar himself along with Urmi Juvekar.

The story basically captures Byomkesh Bakshy’s first case that he undertakes as a detective. The story is based in 1943 Kolkata during World War II.

The lead role of Byomkesh Bakshy is being played by Sushant Singh Rajput. The rest of the cast includes Anand Tiwari, Bengali actress Swastika Mukherjee, Divya Menon, Neeraj Kabi, Miyang Chang & Aryann Bhowmik.

It is rumored that Swastika’s role was initially supposed to be done by Rani Mukherjee but since it had some bold scenes hence Rani refused.

It has music by Dibakar’s protégé Sneha Khanwalkar. It is being jointly produced by Aditya Chopra & Dibakar Banerjee.

Byomkesh Bakshi became famous as a television serial in 1993 which had Rajit Kapur playing the lead and KK Raina as his accomplice…

Whether the movie adaptation will be as successful as the television version…well for that we need to wait till 3rd April 2015…till then watch below the Official Trailer of the movie, which looks interesting and different….

Movie Review : Baby

Baby: Definitely not a Baby step but a giant leap in Espionage genre

Baby PosterThere are few movies which break the mould of your quintessential Bollywood movie and Neeraj Pandey has done it successfully with his previous movies “A Wednesday” & “Special 26”. With “Baby” he takes huge leap with a genre that has not been explored too often in Bollywood, the espionage genre.

“Baby” as a movie has a huge canvas spread across countries like Turkey (Istanbul), Nepal (Katmandu), Saudi (Abu Dhabi) and Story & Screenplay written by Neeraj Pandey himself, tells the story of a secret Intelligence cell “Baby” headed by Firoz Ali Khan (Danny Denzongpa) and with the help of his trusted lieutenant Ajay Singh Rajput (Akshay Kumar) he unveils a plot of terrorist attack on India planned by the international terrorist group headed by Maulana Mohammed Rehman (Rashid Naz).

The screenplay is gripping and fast paced with every sequence flowing smoothly to other. The characters are well defined and have a purpose in the story. The screenplay is patriotic without being preachy. The “Argo” style climax is nail biting. It keeps you at the edge of the seat throughout its run time of 159 minutes. Where it fails albeit in a small proportion is that it took the complete first half to set up the base and it is only in the second half when the real plot commences. The dialogues are smart and at the same time witty adding to the entertainment quotient.

There are very few films which boast of the fact that it was aptly cast, in “Baby” the biggest highlight is perfect casting done by Vicky Sidana. Akshay Kumar as Ajay Singh Rajput the leader of the mission fits the bill completely. His agility, his demeanor everything is spot on and this performance is one of his best performances as well. Danny Denzongpa as Firoz Ali Khan is brilliant as the head of secret service team. It was good to see Danny after a gap in a role which complements his persona and stature completely. Tapsi Pannu in a small role as Agent Priya Suryavanshi is impressive and creates an impact. Rana Dagubatti as Jai Singh Rathore is good but he does not get a chance to show his histrionics in a brief role. Anupam Kher as Shuklaji gives the necessary punch to the proceedings. Rashid Naz as Maulana the head of the terrorist group gives the necessary chill with his presence. Kay Kay Menon as Bilal shines in a brief role. Another cracker performance was of Sushant Singh as Wasim, he created an impact in a brief role. The rest of ensemble cast Madhurima Tuli, Jameel Khan, Murli Sharma, Mikal Zulfikar do a brilliant job.

Cinematography by Sudeep Chatterjee is another highlight of the movie; he has captured Istanbul, Abu Dhabi, Katmandu, Mumbai and Delhi to perfection. Background score by Sanjoy Chowdhury enhances the sequences and adds to the impact. Abbas Ali Moghul’s action is spot on especially the chase sequences, the action is realistic and without the unnecessary frills. Good Editing is one of the pre-requisite of a good thriller and Shree Narayan Sigh does not disappoint, every sequence blends easily to other. Sanjeev Ravade’s production design is realistic and blends with the narration beautifully. Costume design by Falguni Thakore again blends with the narration which is commendable. In a nutshell the technical team put a brilliant effort which enhances the movie watching experience.

“Baby” is another feather on Neeraj Pandey’s cap, making him a well sought out film maker and I feel Akshay Kumar should do more such movies which compliment his persona perfectly…

Kudos to team “Baby”, I will go with 4 stars….

Movie Rating: 4 out of 5 stars (4 / 5)

Official Trailer : Shamitabh

shamitabh-261214After their brilliant collaboration in “Cheeni Kum” (2007) & “Paa” (2009) R Balki and Amitabh Bachchan are back this year with “Shamitabh”….

Written & Directed by R Balki, not much has been revealed as far as the plot is concerned. But looking at the promos it seems it is a story of a yester year Super Star played by Amitabh Bachchan and a New Super Star of today played by Dhanush…

The movie has an interesting cast comprising of Amitabh Bachchan, Dhanush, Introducing Akshara Haasan (Kamal Haasan & Sarika’s daughter), Rekha, Abhinaya, Rukmini Vijayakumar & Rajiv Ravindranathan,, it also has cameos of lot of film makers like Rohit Shetty, Karan Johar, Mahesh Bhatt, Anurag Basu, Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra, Rajkumar Hirani, Gauri Shinde, Boney Kapoor, Javed Akhtar & Ekta Kapoor..

“Shamitabh” is being produced under the banner of Hope Productions, Amitabh Bachchan Corporation, Wunderbar Films, Balaji Motion Pictures and being presented by Eros International & MAD Entertainment Ltd.

Music is by Illaiyaraaja and cinematography by P C Sreeram….

Will the director actor combination of R Balki & Amitabh Bachchan re-create the magic…well we have to wait till 6th Feb’15 for the verdict…till then enjoy the Trailer

Official Trailer : Dolly Ki Doli

Sonam Kapoor is back with yet another light hearted comedy “Dolly Ki Doli” after her not so successful “Khoobsurat”….


Written By Umashankar  Singh and debutant director Abhishek Dogra, it tells the story of a con girl “Dolly” who gets married  and loots the house at night and flees…

Well premise sounds interesting with an impressive cast of Rajkummar Rao, Pulkit Samrat, Varun Sharma (Fukrey Fame) & Saif Ali Khan in a special appearance. Mallaika Arora Khan does yet another item number for her husband Arbaaz Khan’s production.

Produced by Arbaaz Khan, this is his first non Salman Khan starrer after Dabangg & Dabangg 2. Abhishek Dogra debuts as the director with this movie.

Music is by Khan’s regular Sajid-Wajid….

The movie releases on 23rd Jan’15…the trailer looks interesting only time will tell whether Arbaaz Khan will be third time lucky without his bade bhaiya Salman Khan….till then enjoy the Trailer….


Flashback : 25 Years Of Maine Pyar Kiya

The history of Bollywood cannot be complete without mentioning “Maine Pyar Kiya”, a movie which still is fresh in the minds of the people.

Released on 29th Dec’1989, it completed 25 years on 29th Dec 2014. Even after 25 years the dialogues of the movie, the songs everything is still remembered.


“Maine Pyar Kiya” was a launch pad for Sooraj Barjatya as a director, it re-introduced Salman Khan after his not so memorable debut in “Biwi Ho To Aisi”, it introduced Bhagyashree and whole lot of character actors like Reema Lagoo, Alok Nath, Rajiv Verma & Laxmikant Berde became household names and who became regulars in many other Rajshri Production.

The Story written by Sooraj Barjatya himself was a Love story of Prem & Suman, the typical rich boy falls in love with poor girl saga. But it was the fresh approach and it was the brilliant screenplay which stood out. The Dialogues were instant hit, till today people have not forgotten dialogues like “Dosti mein no Sorry, No Thank You” or “ Daam chukaoonga is Five Star Hotel Ka…” or “Prem Ek Ladka Ladki Dost nahin hote…”.

The Movie was released in limited theatres ( Only 29) on 29th Dec 1989 and each Theatre was  equipped with 4 Track Setreophonic Sound for the release which was a part of the agreement with Rajshri for exhibiting “Maine Pyar Kiya”. Later once the movie was declared a hit it was released in other theaters but with a clause that they had to update the Sound System to “4 Track Stereophonic Sound”.

“Maine Pyar Kiya” became a blockbuster hit and the biggest grosser of 1989. Till now it has earned over Rs 660 million till date.

It made Salman Khan & Bhagyashree super stars over night. But Salman Khan was not the original choice for the role of the lead Prem, Sooraj had signed actor Faraaz Khan Son of yesteryear villain Yusuf Khan. But just before the shooting could commence Faraaz was detected of Jaundice and the set was ready and Sooraj could not afford to wait and hence signed Salman Khan who was initially not too keen to do the movie but Sooraj Barjatya convinced him and eventually he agreed and rest as it is said is history.

The Music by Raam Laxman was also a vital contributor to the film’s success, till today the songs of “Maine Pyar Kiya “ is popular like “Dil Deewana”, “Aate Jaate”, “Mere Rang Mein”….Raam Laxman also won a Filmfare award for the movie. S P Balasubramaniam also won a Filmfare award for the song “Dil Deewana” and became the voice of Salman Khan for his future movies.

“Maine Pyar Kiya” won 7 Filmfare awards for the year 1989 making it the only Bollywood movie winning highest No. of Filmfare awards till “Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge “ won 11 Filmfare awards in 1995.

“Maine Pyar Kiya” was later dubbed in English by the name of “When Love Calls” which did extremely well in Guayana, Tobago and Trinidad. It was also dubbed in Telegu by the name of “Prema Paavuraalu” which ran for 25 weeks in Vishakapatnam.

“Maine Pyar Kiya” will always be in the hearts of an ardent Bollywood Lover like me and many more….thanks Sooraj Barjatya & Rajshri for giving us “Maine Pyar Kiya”…..

Flashback: 1000 Weeks of Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge

I still remember the day 20th Oct 1995 in a small town Jabalpur standing in queue for the tickets of the First Day First Show of “Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayege”. I had a friend for company whom I dragged to watch DDLJ as he was keener on Madhuri Dixit starrer “Yaraana” (also released on the same day) was sulking since “Yaraana” was showing in the adjacent theater. The poster was newly pasted and there was not too much of a crowd for 9:30 AM show. Who knew that this movie will make history….


It was a Shahrukh Khan- Kajol starrer who gave the successful Baazigar and Karan Arjun but as a pair there was nothing to write about then. It was a launch pad for Aditya Chopra, elder son of Yash Chopra and Yashraj Productions was celebrating 25 years with its release.

The movie started and I was transported to a different world of Raj & Simran and before I could realize the 186 mins got over. When I walked out of the theater I wanted scream to the world that this is the best love story ever made in Bollywood.

It had a very different concept, the main lead Raj was hardly anything that the Bollywood Hero was. Raj was a failure, a loser and absolutely nothing that can be idolized. What clicked with the audience was that the characters were realtable. The magic of Raj & Simran was immortalized beautifully by Shahrukh Khan & Kajol making them the next hit Jodi of Bollywood. Later they gave blockbusters like “Kuch Kuch Hota Hai”, “Kabhi Khushi Kabhi Gham” & “My Name Is Khan”. People still wait for a movie with Shahrukh Khan & Kajol, a magic which still lasts.

Written by Aditya Chopra himself the screenplay had some extremely riveting sequences, who can forget the “Palat” sequence or the sequence between Farida Jalal and Kajol who played mother daughter wherein she explains to Simran how women need to sacrifice in this world ruled by men or the 10 minute rendition of Raj played by Shahrukh in front of Simran’s family in the climax as to why he cannot elope with her and above all the train sequence in the climax. These sequences are still so fresh in the minds as if it was yesterday. Aditya Chopra not only consolidated his position as a director but as a proficient writer as well with DDLJ. Later he made successful movies like “Mohabatein” & “Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi”. We are still waiting for his next venture.

DDLJ started the NRI brand of Bollywood movies and Shahrukh Khan became the favorite of the Indian Diaspora which is true even today. Karan Johar who also acted in the movie as Fonchi, Raj’s friend who later perfected the art of NRI designed movies with “Kuch Kuch Hota Hai” and “Kabhi Kushi kabhi Gham”.

DDLJ was the first few films to be mixed in Dolby Sound in India and was released in Dolby SR across India. The video rights of DDLJ were held back for a long time similar to how Rajshri Productions did for “Hum Aapke Hain Koun…”

DDLJ became the biggest grosser of 1995 and till 2014 it is the top 5 highest grosser of Bollywood with a total earning till date of Rs 1.22 billion worldwide. It is still running in Maratha Mandir, Mumbai for matinee show completing 1000 weeks and still has occupancy of 50%.

DDLJ won 10 Filmfare awards that year. DDLJ is one of the 3 Bollywood movies included in “1001 Movies You Must See Before You Die”, the other movies are “Mother India” & “Deewar”.

The music by Jatin Lalit still remains popular especially “Mehendi Lagake Rakhna” which is played in almost all Indian weddings till date.

DDLJ boosted the Europe tourism and travelling by Euro Rail is still considered an option for honey mooners.

1000 Weeks is just another milestone for DDLJ but it will remain in the hearts of Bollywood lovers and a classic which re-invented how love stories should be made in Bollywood…..

Official Trailer : Baby

After the successful “A Wednesday” & “Special 26” Writer Director Neeraj Pandey comes  with his new offering, Baby-movie-First-Lookanother Thriller “BABY”.

It has an ensemble cast of Akshay Kumar, Rana Daggubati (last seen in Dum Maro Dum), Taapsee Pannu, Anupam Kher, Madhurima Tuli, Kay Kay Menon, Sushant Singh (will be seen after a long time), Danny Denzongappa, Mikaal Zulfiqar (British Pakistani Actor) & Rasheed Naz (Pakistani Actor of Bol fame)

BABY tells the story of the a group of Officers headed by Ajay Singh Rajput who go on a mission to stop a major terrorist attack on the nation masterminded by a International Terrorist group.

It has music by MM Kreem & Meet Bros….

Baby is being produced by T-Series in association with Crouching Tiger, Friday Filmworks & Cape of Good Films

The official Trailer looks promising and looks like a complete action flick. Will Neeraj be third time lucky at the Box Office for that we have to wait till 23rd January 2015…when the movie opens in theatres…till then enjoy the Trailer…..


Movie Review: PK

PK: A Movie with its heart at the right place

Rajkumar Hirani right from his first movie “Munnabhai MBBS” to “3 Idiots” has always had a social message and asked questions about the prevalent current practices in the society. He does the same with PK wherein he questions our current religious beliefs and practices which was somewhere touched by “Oh My God”.PK_Theatrical_Poster

But Rajkumar Hirani presents the whole concept in a form of a satire through the eyes of an alien who lands in India and due to various circumstances questions the religion and religious beliefs prevalent in our society.

The screenplay by Rajkumar Hirani and Abhijat Joshi very humorously but strongly puts their point forward on Religion and its beliefs. Though the screenplay is not as cohesive as Rajkumar Hirani and Abhijat Joshi’s previous works but it definitely has a soul and has a lasting impact which forces you to ask the same question to yourself. The Story and Screenplay definitely touches the heart at the right place but does not become preachy and does it entertainingly.

The dialogues, written by Rajkumar Hirani himself along with Abhijat Joshi take the screenplay to a different level. The dialogues are witty, funny at the same time impactful wherever required.

Performance wise Aamir Khan as PK is the real life of the movie, he does not leave his character even for a single frame, Right from his dialect to his body language everything is par excellence. After watching the movie you will vouch that no other actor could have done this role as well as Aamir Khan, I would say another feather on his already overcrowded cap. Anushka Sharma as Jagat Janini a.k.a Jaggu gives a sparkling performance and complements Aamir’s act. Saurabh Shukla as Tapasvi the God man, also gives a brilliant performance, Saurabh has been an underrated actor in Bollywood. Sushant Singh Rajput in a cameo Sarfaraz also does a good job. Sanjay Dutt in a special appearance shines as Bhairav Singh. Boman Irani as Cherry Bajwa has a brief role but does complete justice to his character. The rest of the ensemble cast does a good job.

Music by Shantanu Moitra and Ajay-Atul are situational but Tinga Tinga rendered by Shreya Ghoshal and Char Kadam rendered by Shaan & Shreya Ghoshal and music by Shantanu Moitra are stand out. The cinematography by C. K. Muraleedharan is good and captures Rajasthan and Delhi well. It is the SFX which is not up to the mark, it could have been much better and looks amateurish. The Production Design by Acropolis is well done especially the Rajasthan sequence.

“PK” may not be Rajkumar Hirani’s best but it is definitely a movie made by heart and it does not go wrong.A definite watch I will go with 4 stars….

Movie Rating: 4 out of 5 stars (4 / 5)

Official Trailer : PK

Rajkumar Hirani is back with “PK”, the much awaited movie of 2014. Aamir Khan plays the title role of PK with anPk Trailer ensemble cast of Anushka Sharma, Sushant Singh Rajput, Boman Irani and Saurabh Shukla, Sanjay Dutt will be seen in a stellar role. “PK” is a satire on Indian superstitions and Goodman. The story is written by Abhijat Joshi and screenplay by Abhijat Joshi, Rajkumar Hirani, Aamir Khan and Sreerag Nambiar. Aamir as expected has worked every minute details of the character of Pk, it is said Aamir Khan used to eat 100 pans during the shooting of the movie. It is a combined effort of UTV, Vinod Chopra Films and Rajkumar Hirani Films  and produced by Sidharth Roy Kapur, Rajkumar Hirani and Vidhu Vinod Chopra. Rajkumar Hirani is launching his production house with PK. Music is by Shantanu Moitra and Ajay Atul. The movie releases on 19th Dec’14….



Movie Review : Happy New Year

Happy New Year: Too many & too much spoil the New Year

Big Star cast and big production value do not necessarily give you a GOOD movie; I guess Bollywood directors should realize this…

“Happy New Year” is another such opportunity, but somehow falls short in the overall narration…

Happy_New_Year_Poster_(2014_film) (1)Written by Farah Khan, Mayur Puri and Althea Kaushal “Happy New Year” is your Bollywood take on “Ocean’s Eleven” with the desi Bollywood tadka of Naach Gaana, Patriotism and over the top comic sequences. The story is of five losers headed by Charlie (Shahrukh Khan) who plan a heist to steal diamonds worth 300 crores , how they implement the plan and whether they are successful in the heist is what the movie is all about….

The story concept wise is brilliant but it is the screenplay which is full of loop holes and unnecessary sequences which do not add up to the overall movie experience. The first half drags, as it is solely spent to introduce the characters. The main issue in the narration is the emphasis on the Dance Competition and less screen time is spent in the planning of the heist. Though each character is defined excluding Charlie’s well, but later the main characteristics are sidelined like Jag (Sonu Sood) is supposed to be deaf by one ear but this is conveniently over looked in many sequences, such is the case with other characters as well. The chemistry between Charlie and Mohini (Deepika Padukone) is missing completely. The climax looks too convenient and a bit stretched. Another issue is the 179 mins of screen time which is way too long and it could have been 30 mins short.

The dialogues are more of a spoof of previous Shahrukh Khan Movies, and there is nothing original.The dialect of both Mohini and Nandu are inconsistent. Excluding a few sequences the comic sequences falls flat and is hardly humorous.

Shahrukh Khan performs earnestly even in silly sequences, but definitely it is not his best. Abhishek Bachchan as Nandu Bhide unfortunately is a badly written character which is more of a clown without much to do. Sonu Sood as Jag is good in showing his abs but unfortunately the same could not be said for his performance. Boman Irani repeats his quintessential Parsi act as Tammy, I feel he is being repetitive and should re-invent himself. Deepika Padukone as Mohini unfortunately has nothing much to do but she is good and lights up the screen. Vivaan Shah as the hacker Rohan shows promise but his character is too one dimensional for any histrionics. Jackie Shroff as the antagonist Charan Grover looks too haggard to be a suave businessman and his act does not impress too much. Rest of the cast is also average.

Cinematography by Manush Nandan is full of glitter and gives a glamorous look. Farah Khan and Geeta Kapoor’s choreography is pleasing especially “Manwa Laage” and “Main Lovely”.

Farah Khan had an excellent cast and a huge production house backing her and off course a superstar like Shahrukh Khan, but she completely wasted this opportunity with a mediocre script and a narration which is full of loopholes. I think Farah should have concentrated more on originality rather than on spoof of other Bollywood movies.

The movie is neither very bad neither very good, and has nothing new to offer, in a nutshell a very average attempt….I will go with 2 and Half stars….

Movie Rating: 2.5 out of 5 stars (2.5 / 5)

Official Trailer : The Shaukeens

“The Shaukeens” is a remake of Basu Chatterjee’s 1982 movie “Shaukeen” staring Ashok Kumar, A K Hangal, Utpal Dutt, Rati Agnihotri and Mithun Chakravorty in a cameo.

After the successful “Tere Bin Laden” this is Abhishek Sharma’s second directorial venture. It has the story adapted by Tigmanshu Dhulia and Sai Kabir and Screenplay by Tigmanshu Dhulia which like the original tells the story of three old men Lali, KD and Pinky who are friends and want to re-live their lives and have fun so they decide to go to Mauritius where they meet Ahana and all three of them try to woo her resulting in comic situations.

The ShaukeenThe movie stars Anupam Kher, Annu Kapoor, Piyush Mishra & Lisa Hayden. Akshay Kumar plays himself in a cameo and Rati Agnihotri who was the heroine of the original is in a special appearance.

A lot of musical chair happened for casting the female lead, the original choice was Nargis Fakhri but she gave preference to her Hollywood venture after which the movie was offered to Shradha Kapoor but things did not work out, ultimately Lisa Hayden was chosen for the female lead.

This movie re-unites three real life friends from NSD Anupam Kher, Annu Kapoor and Piyush Mishra. The cast is interesting and the promo looks like a sex comedy.

The movie has been produces by Ashwin Varde and Murad Khetani and the movie releases on 7th November 2014….

Bollywood Movies This Weekend : 10th Oct’ 14

Ekees Topon Ki Salaami



Ekees Topon Ki Salaami Tamanchey Jigariyaa
“Ekees Topon Ki Salaami” is the directorial debut of Indian Television’s successful Director Ravindra Gautam. He is the man behind Balaj’s successful TV series “Bade Aache Lagte Hain”, and many other serials like “Honge Juda Na Hum” and “Karam Apnaa Apnaa”.The movie has an ensemble star cast of Anupam Kher, Divyendu Sharma (Pyar Ka Panchnama Fame), Neha Dhupia, Aditi Sharma, Manu Rishi and Rajesh Sharma.It tells the story of a common man Purushottam Joshi, a Govt. employee who never got any appreciation all his life for his work. While dying he expresses his last wish of having “Ekees Topon Ki Salaami” on his funeral an ultimate respect given to top dignitaries. What his two son’s Subhash and Shekhar go through to fulfill their father’s last wish is what the movie is all about.The movie looks like a satire on the current condition of a common man with sufficient amount of humor and the plot is fresh.The movie has been produced by Anurradha Prasad and Abhinav Shukla and has music by Ram Sampath (Satyamev Jayate fame) “Tamanchey” is a action packed love story directed by debutant Director Navneet Behal and produced by Suryaveer Singh Bhullar…“Tamanchey” has a principal cast of Nikhil Dwivedi and Richa Chadha playing crooks Munna and Babu respectively who are on the run. How these crooks on the run fall in love against all odds is what the movie is all about….
The plot sounds a bit repetitive but the look and the narration of the movie is looking fresh. This is Richa Chadha’s first out and out commercial movie as a lead and Nikhil Dwivedi is seen after a long hiatus (his last movie was Hate Story)…It has a remixed version of the R D Burman hit song “Pyar mein Dil Pe” from Mahaan, the remixed version is sung by Bappi Lahiri. It has music by Krsna (Tanu Weds Manu Fame)
“Jigariyaa” is your quintessential love story introducing newcomers Harshavardhan Deo and Cherry Mardia and directed by Raj Purohit, who directed the not so successful “Sixteen” in 2013…The makers claim that the story is inspired by true events and is based in Agra and Mathura and tells the tale of love of Shambhu and Radha and their struggle to get love against family pressures. Sounds familiar, looking at the promos it looks like an old wine in a new bottle.The supporting cast includes Virender Saxena, K K Raina, Navni Parihar. The main highlight of the movie is the music by duo Agnel-Faizan and Raj-Prakash….it is melodious and breezy….

The movie has been produced by Raju Chadha and Vinod Bachchan (Tanu Weds Manu & Zilla Ghaziabad fame)…

Official Trailer : Ungli

Ungli_2Dharma Productions new offering “Ungli” is something completely different from their usual Candy Floss love stories and Rom com…

Directed by Rensil D’Silva, it tells us the story of a group of five who rebel against corruption and start a group called Ungli, whose main motto is exposing the corrupt and teaching them a lesson…

Rensil D’Silva has earlier directed “Kurbaan” in 2009 for Dharma Productions which bombed at the box office.

The ensemble cast comprises of Sanjay Dutt, Emraan Hashmi, Kangana Ranaut, Randeep Hooda, Neil Bhoopalan, Angad Bedi, Neha Dhupia & Arunoday Singh. I must say quite an interesting cast…

The movie was initially scheduled to release last year but the movie got delayed due to Sanjay Dutt’s arrest and later Karan Johar thought of introducing songs which was not there in the original script. Shradha Kapoor is doing an item number in this movie.

The promo is looking promising. The movie releases on 28th Nov 2014…let’s see whether Rensil gets a hit with this one….


Movie Review : Bang Bang

Bang Bang: All about glitz and glamour but no content

Bang Bang“Bang Bang” is Sidharth Anand’s first foray into action, a departure from his rom coms like “Salaam Namaste”, “Bachna Aai Haseeno”, “Tara Ra Rum Pum” and “Anjana Anjani”.

Officially it is the remake of Tom Cruise’s not so impressive “Knight & Day”. “Bang Bang” has a wafer thin story by Patrick O Neil about Rajveer Singh (Hrithik Roshan) a thief who steals the Kohinoor diamond from London, falls in love with a dumb damsel Harleen (Katrina Kaif) and is in search of international terrorist Omar Zafar (Danny), why, when and how is what the movie is all about…

Screenplay by Sujoy Ghosh and Suresh Nair is equally unimpressive. The central character is almost like a super hero, I think the writers created an alter ego of Krish with Rajveer Nanda who jumps, leaps, uses state of art gadgets, shows his well sculpted body and kisses his damsel with passion, he is too perfect to be believable. The plot or should I say chaos is just a collage of some action sequences, car chases in international locations and songs in beautiful locations like Greece, nothing more than that. I did not expect such a half baked plot from Sujoy, it had a premise of a sleek spy thriller but the screenplay just does not pick up. Even the love story does not strike a chord, it only has some kissing sequences, and songs which pop up from nowhere. Half hour into the movie and you can predict the narration.

Dialogues by Abbas Tyrewala is amateurish and too mundane with desh bhakti punch lines like the 80’s, even the dialogues could not salvage the bland script.

Performance wise Hrithik Roshan sleep walks through his portrayal and it felt that it was an extension of his previous character Krish. Katrina Kaif with her forced innocent act as Harleen Sahani the bank receptionist is irritating and she end up being an arm candy and only needs to look good. Danny has a hackneyed villainous character of Omar Zafar who is a quintessential bollywood villain, but his presence makes an impact. Pawan Malhotra is wasted as Intelligence Officer Dilawar, as his character is poorly written and half backed. Deepti Naval, Kanwaljit Singh, Jimmy shergill and Vikram Gokhale are wasted in insignificant cameos. Javed Jaffery as Hamid Gul has nothing much to do. In short a good ensemble cast is wasted in a half baked story.

The best aspect of the movie is its action by Parvez Shaikh, it is sleek and well choreographed. Choreography by Bosco Ceaser & Ahmed Khan is done well, especially the song “Tu Meri” song which showcased Hrithik’s brilliant moves. Music by Vishal Shekhar is foot tapping and breezy, apt for the kind of subject, even the background score by Salim-Sulaiman is good. Another highlight of the movie is the cinematography by Vikas Sivaraman and Sunil Patel which added the glitz and style to the narration.

Sidharth Anand had everything going for him in this movie, superstar Hrithik Roshan and the beautiful Katrina Kaif, Fox star as the producer did not spare any expense in making “Bang Bang” a grand cinematic experience, but it is opportunity lost due to weak and half baked script. Even Sidharth’s direction is inconsistent, he concentrated more on style and glitz and less on the content and eventually the movie falls flat.

A plot which could have been a good spy thriller, but fails miserably, I will go with 2 stars….

Movie Rating: 2 out of 5 stars (2 / 5)

Movie Review : Haider

Haider: A Complex subject handled with care….

Vishal Bharadwaj completes his trilogy with William Shakespear’s adaptation of “Hamlet”, earlier he made” Maqbool”, an adaptation of Macbeth and “Omkara”, an adaptation of Othello.Haider_2014_POSTER

“Hamlet” was a difficult subject to adapt but Vishal Bharadwaj in association with Basharat Meer has adapted it beautifully. Vishal’s “Hamlet” or “Haider” is set in Kashmir, year 1995, and it tells the story of Haider’s (Shahid Kapoor) search for his missing father Dr Hilal Meer (Narendra Jha)who was captured by the army.

“Hamlet” had many layers to its premise and Vishal has tried to stick to the premise and interwoven those layers with élan. Each character right from Haider (Prince Hamlet) to the two Salmans (Courtiers Rosencrantz and Guildenstern) who play Haider’s childhood friends who spy on Haider to the Gravediggers has been etched well. Vishal has been true to the play and the writing is so strong that you feel the pain and ethos of Haider. Haider’s relationship with his mother Gazala (Queen Gertrude) has been portrayed with sensitivity and all the sequences between them are the highlight of the movie. It is Gazala’s character which is the best written character in the movie, it is mysterious and unpredictable till the end. It is the second half when the narration slips a bit and slows down the pace; even the climax seems a bit overstretched. It is the 162 mins run time which is a drawback; it could have been 15 mins shorter. Dialogues by Vishal Bharadwaj is witty and at the same time with a lot of depth.

Performances by the ensemble cast are the biggest highlight of the movie. Shahid Kapoor as Haider is one of his best performances till date and you can feel the pain and anguish. In some sequences he surpasses all expectations especially the sequence at Lal Chowk, it tapped his versatility as an actor, he proves that only he could have played Prince Hamlet which is the most complex character in English literature. Tabu as Haider’s mother Gazala is the best performance of the movie; she is brilliant and does justice to Vishal’s writing and vision of Queen Gertrude. Kay Kay Menon as Khurram (Claudius), Haider’s uncle proves again that he is an actor to watch out for; he is the most underutilized actor of Bollywood. Narendra Jha as Haider’s Father (King Hamlet) Hilal Meer is the surprise element of the movie. He does an excellent job considering the strong actors in the cast, still he shines. Lalit Parimoo another brilliant but underutilized actor plays Parvez Lone (Polonius), the army chief of Kashmir, and his portrayal of this conniving character who loves his daughter is another highlight performance of the movie. His portrayal is underplayed aptly and that is the beauty of his performance. Irfan Khan (The Ghost) as Roohdar the Pakistani militant is a cameo but his portrayal makes it a memorable character of the movie. Shradha Kapoor as Arshi (Ophelia) Haider’s love interest is good but her performance gets lost due to some brilliant performances by the rest of the cast. The two Salmans (Courtiers Rosencrantz and Guildenstern) Haider’s childhood friends played by Sumit Kaul & Rajat Bhagat give you the comic relief but are the weakest characters written in this movie. Kulbhushan Kharbanda in a cameo as Gazala’s father-in-law was a delight.

Shot entirely in Kashmir and it has been captured beautifully on celluloid by Pankaj Kumar. Dolly Ahluwalia again creates her impact through her costumes which were well researched and developed. Production Design by Subrata Chakraborthy & Amit Ray again was one of the best aspects of Haider. Music another forte of this movie by Vishal Bharadwaj in haunting, especially the Kashmiri folk inspired Bismil and the sensitive Jhelum sung by Vishal himself.

Vishal Bharadwaj again proves that he is a sensitive film maker and good with complex subjects. He succeeds in extracting some of the best performances of this year from his cast. The length and the overstretched climax make “Haider” a few notches short from being a classic.

This is definitely not an entertainer but if you want to watch a good sensitive movie (which is rare) go for it, I will go with 4 stars….a definite watch…

Movie Rating: 4 out of 5 stars (4 / 5)

Official Trailer : Kill Dil

YRF and Shaad Ali come together again after their not so successful “Jhoom Barabar Jhoom” (2007). The movie has an interesting ensemble cast of Govinda, Ranveer Singh, Ali Zafar and Parineeti Chopra. Govinda plays the role of a antagonist and both Ranveer Singh & Ali Zafar play assasins.

The official trailer gives a feel of a Bollywood version of a Quinton Tarantino movie; interestingly the title of the movie has also been inspired by Quinton Taratino’s movie Kill Bill. Shaad Ali for the first time is trying a movie in action genre, his previous movies have been romantic frothy movies like Saathiya, Bunty Aur Babli and Jhoom Barabar Jhoom.

Music is by Shankar Ehsaan Loy and lyrics by Gulzar, can they re-create the magic of Bunty Aur Babli and Jhoom Barabar Jhoom, well we have to wait and watch.

The movie releases on 14th Nov’14……

Movie Review : Daawat-E-Ishq

Daawat-E-Ishq: A undercooked story with tangy tadka of good performance

For the last few movies YRF has painstakingly tried to break the mould of the quintessential YRF movieDaawat
format and gone ahead in making movies which are based in smaller towns and stories which are more
realistic and says the stories of the common man.

“Daawat-E-Ishq” is on the similar lines with Habib Faisal, YRF’s in- house writer director. Habib’s
previous movies like “Do Dooni Chaar” and “Ishaqzaade” explores the middle class and the small town
sensibilities with élan. In “Daawat-E-Ishq” he tries it again with a social message on dowry and Section
498 (A) which is law against people who take dowry.

Story and screenplay by Habib himself in association with Jyoti Kapoor explores the story of Gulrez Qadir
(Parineeti Chopra) a sales girl in a shoe store and her father Abdul Qadir (Anupam Kher). Abdul’s attempt
to get his daughter married fails every time due to the dowry demand from the prospective groom’s.
Completely disillusioned the father daughter duo take up an unusual route to solve their issue and go to
Lucknow where they meet Tariq Haider, owner of the famous Haidiri Kebab Restaurant in Lucknow. What
culminates between these three is the crux of the rest of the story.

The weakness of the script is the beginning and the climax. The narration in the beginning takes time to
build up till the action shifts to Lucknow and the climax looks too hurried without any emotional quotient
or depth. Habib tries to keep the narration simple but it becomes too simple at times. The con acts in the
movie looks a bit too farfetched. The main attraction of the script are its three principal characters
Gulrez, Tariq and Gulrez’s father Abdul, these characters have been written with full conviction but the
other characters are neglected as more screen time is given to the principal chracters and the outcome is a
half baked story with some beautiful moments.

The dialogues again by Habib himself are witty and comic and he gets the dialects of both Hyderabad and
Lucknow spot on. Elahe Hiptoola’s contribution to the Hyderabadi accent cannot be ignored.

It is the performances by the principal cast which lifts the movie. Parineeti Chopra as Gulrez yet again
gives a sparkling performance especially her Hyderabadi dialect is so convincing. Aditya Roy Kapur was a
surprise packet for me; his portrayal of Tariq Haider is brilliant; right from his body language to his
dialect everything is spot on. Anupam Kher strikes back again with his portrayal of Gulrez’s meek and not
so confident father Abdul Qadir, watching Anupam after “Special 26” in his elements was a treat. Television
actor Karan Wahi debuts in this movie but is least impressive. Rests of the cast do not have much to do in
this movie.

Himam Dhanija’s cinematography is good and captures the by lanes of Hyderabad and Lucknow well. Production
design by Mukund Gupta is well done which complements the narration.

Music by Sajid Wajid is just a wee bit more than average, the title song and Mannat are the two
compositions which stand out, but unfortunately the filming of both the songs are average.

Habib could have made it better with some strong writing but he misses the plot. An attempt which is half
baked, I will go with 3 stars…

Movie Rating: 3 out of 5 stars (3 / 5)

Movie Review : Khoobsurat 2014

Khoobsurat: A Beautifully gift wrapped Bland Story

Khoobsurat_Poster_2“Khoobsurat” is the first Offering of Disney in India in association with Anil Kapoor Productions. The producers claimed that it was the remake of Hrishikesh Mukerjee’s 1980’s classic of the same name.

So a fantastic script and a reputed banner which is famous worldwide for making fairy tale romances, you expect a beautiful fairy tale saga. But alas that did not happen. The original story of D.N Mukherjee is adapted and contemporized by Indira Bisht. The story shifts from an upper middle class set up as per the original to a Royal Family of Sambhalpur. The Queen Nirmala Devi is a strict disciplinarian and no nonsense woman whose life is like a time table and she expects the same from her son Vikram Rathod (Fawad Khan), her daughter and her husband the King of Sambhalpur (Aamir Raza Hussain). Things become topsy turvy for them when Dr Milli Chakravorty (Sonam Kapoor) a physiotherapist enters their life.

The screenplay by Indira Bisht lacks the soul which was the main attraction of the original; instead what we get is a run down version of the original. One of the flaw is the pace, it is too lethargic and slow. Secondly the love story between the Prince and Milli just does not pick up. Thirdly most of the characters look unreal and cardboard like. The only good thing about the screenplay is the interactions of Milli with her mother Manju on Skype. In a nutshell till the end the script does not pick up and lacks depth.
Dialogues by Juhi Chaturvedi make the narration a bit interesting with some witty and funny dialogues but even she could not salvage a weak script.

It is the performances by the ensemble cast that keeps the interest level to some extent. Ratna Pathak Shah as Rani Nirmala Devi, a role which was enacted by her mother Dina Pathak in the original, gives a good performance. Kirron Kher as Manju Chakrovorty, Milli’s mother gives a crackling performance and is the highlight of the movie; she makes you laugh and keeps the interest intact. Aamir Raza Hussain as the King does a decent job but his character falls flat because of the weak writing. Fawad Khan the heartthrob of Pakistan who debuts in this movie and plays the Prince, Vikram Singh Rathod, does a good job and shows the spark albeit in his case as well the writing pulls down his performance, but his charm does the job. Now the main character Dr Milli Chakravorty played by Sonam Kapoor is the most inconsistent performance of the movie, in some sequences she goes overboard in her goofy acts, and after some time you are tired. I do not blame her completely but the script pulls her down as well. I think she was a miss cast as Dr Milli Chakravorty.

Shashanka Ghosh after an impressive “Waisa Bhi Hota Hai Part II” and the quirky over the top movie “QuiK Gun Murugan” gives us an unimpressive remake of “Khoobsurat”. I think he went overboard in making this movie into a fairy tale but lost the plot in the bargain.

Sneha Khanwalkar’s music is different but I thought that it did not gel with the concept of the movie; the music should have been frothier for such a movie. Production Design by Shruti Gupte is good and gives a fairy tale touch to the narration. Costumes by Uma Biju, Karuna Laungani and Raghavendra Rathore is spot on, especially Raghvendra Rathore’s designs for the royal family.

Only if a look of a movie was enough for a interesting watch but unfortunately you need a tight script to make the narration interesting, and “Khoobsurat” lacks an interesting script I will go with 2 and a Half stars (Half additional for Kirron Kher’s performance)…..

Movie Review : Finding Fanny

Finding Fanny: A quirky tale with a Soul

Homi Adajania is back after his commercial mainstream outing in “Cocktail” to what he does best, tell another Finding Fannyquirky tale of dysfunctional individuals which he convincingly told with his debut “Being Cyrus”.

“Finding Fanny” let me warn is not your run of the mill movie, it is abstract in its narration but the soul is at the right place.

Homi Adajania adapts Kersi Khambata’s story again after “Being Cyrus”. “Finding Fanny” primarily tells the story of five individuals Angie (Deepika Padukone), her mother-in-law Rosie (Dimple Kapadia), her naïve affable friend Ferdie (Naseeruddin Shah), her mother-in-law’s admirer Don Pedro (Pankaj Kapur) and her brooding secret lover Savio Da Gama (Arjun Kapoor). Based in a small village of Goa Pocolim, the story unfolds when these five principle characters take a road trip to find Ferdie’s love, whom  he confessed love 46 years back Stefanie Fernandes a.k.a “Fanny” (Anjali Patil). How each character comes to his own and discovers themselves is what the story is all about.

The story premise by Kersi Khambata is wafer thin but it is the screenplay which accentuates the narration. It is the situations that make the story funny; each character is defined well with their set of eccentricities and insecurities. Kersi has done a brilliant job in defining the characters well. But I felt the proceeding goes from quirky to awry as the movie comes to an end. The climax could have been written better. But overall the pace never dips and at the end you have a smile. Well as I said earlier this is not your conventional film so do not expect the obvious.

The Dialogues written by Kersi and Homi is the highlight of the movie which complements the narration and lifts the scenes. They are brilliantly written with subtle humor but the impact is hilarious.

It is the performances by the ensemble cast which is a major highlight and the reason why the movie is a delight to watch. Homi undoubtedly had an enviable cast. Naseeruddin Shah as Ferdie, the emotional affable post master is brilliant. Naseer underplays his character,he has modulated his voice and his body language to portray Ferdie and the outcome is just mind-blowing.  Pankaj Kapur who plays the eccentric lusty painter Don Pedro, he again proves his brilliance with this portrayal. Although amongst the five characters, Don Pedro’s character is wafer thin as far as the writing goes but Pankaj Kapur with his portrayal takes the character to the zenith. It was delight to watch both the thespians in one frame. Dimple Kapadia as Rosie is brilliant and gives one of her best performances; she captures the nuances of Rosie’s character well. Deepika Padukone again gives a good performance with Angie, Homi extracts another cracker performance after her Veronica act in “Cocktail”. Arjun Kapoor as Savio, the brooding loser and lover shows his range as an actor.

Anil Mehta’s cinematography is so breathtaking that after watching the movie you want to take a trip to Goa. He captures the old Goa so well, something which has not been highlighted well after “Trikaal”. Goa‘s beauty lies beyond the beaches as well and Anil has captured it brilliantly.

Costumes by Anaita Shroff Adajania are so well done that it actually blends with the narration and does not look out of place. Production Design by Manisha Khandelwal is another highlight, every detail is painstakingly executed. The last highlight being the Music by Mathias Duplessy especially the backgrounds score, it just transports you to another world.

Homi Adajania breaks the conventional norms of film making and tries to create an Indian “Little Miss Sunshine”; well he partially succeeds as well. The movie’s unconventional take makes it for niche audience and it may not find takers in the masses. I will go with Four Stars….

Movie Rating: 4 out of 5 stars (4 / 5)

Movie Review : Creature 3D

Creature 3D: This Fear has No Face

Creature 3DJust like Ramsays in the 80’s and early 90’s were the pioneers in the horror genre, similarly Vikram Bhatt is creating his niche in this genre, well now with technology like VFX and 3D Format.

But after watching “Creature” I felt that Vikram Bhatt has not really grown after his major hit in this genre “Raaz” in 2001. The tag line of the movie says “Fear has a New Face”, well unfortunately Vikram offers nothing new to accentuate the fear other than the VFX created monster.

“Creature” tells the story of Ahana (Bipasha Basu) who purchases a property in a hill station Glendale in Himachal and starts a Boutique hotel. Things go awfully awry when her guests start getting attacked by a monster or Bhramha Rakshash. How the damsel in distress fights against the monster forms the crux of the story.

Story by Vikram Bhatt himself and screenplay by him and Sukhmani Sadana has nothing new. It is clichéd and the first half takes enough time to build up, with sub plots of Ahana’s father and his suicide and the not so happening love story of Ahana and Kunal (Imran Abbas) which basically wastes a lot of screen time in songs and the mythological twist of Bhramha Rakshah almost kills the movie and what we get is a half baked VFX driven bland script. Some sequences in the movie instead of making your jump from the seat, makes you laugh. Overall the writing has immense flaws and too dated.

The dialogues by Girish Dhamija is so outdated that you feel you are watching a movie from the 90’s, some dialogues are unintentionally funny like when the Kunal tells Ahana referring to bank officials as vultures, Ahana replies she is not dead yet.

The narration by Vikram Bhatt is sluggish and looks dated and in many sequences you are reminded of “Raaz”, Vikram Bhatt’s blockbuster of 2001 which was 13 years back. I think Vikram needs to re-invent his style.

Performances by the cast also do not help. Bipasha Basu who plays Ahana has a perpetual frown on her face throughout the movie and looks confused. Bipasha repeats her “Raaz” act again but she forgot that “Raaz” was 13 years back and times have changed, overall she gives a below average performance. Debutant Pakistani actor Imran Abbas as Kunal is least impressive and has only one expression for all the scenes whether it was Romantic, Sad or Fearful. Mukul Dev as Professor Sadana sleep walks through his portrayal, cannot blame him as the character was written half baked. Rests of the cast are equally unimpressive.

Music by Mithoon has no soul and the choreography by Raju Khan is extremely mediocre. It is only the VFX generated monster which looks like a amalgamation of Hollywood creatures from Aliens, Predator and Jurrassic Park, is impressive.

“Creature” could have been India’s answer to “Predator”, but alas the outcome is too bland and mediocre, even the 3D format could not salvage a weak script and sluggish narration. I will go with “One & a Half Star”….

Synopsis of Bollywood Movies This Weekend : 12th Sept’ 14

Finding Fanny

Creature 3D

Finding Fanny Creature 3D
“Finding Fanny” is director Homi Adajania’s next and looking at the promos it feels that Homi is back to his form of “Being Cyrus” mould. The movie has an impressive ensemble cast of Nasseruddin Shah, Pankaj Kapoor, Dimple Kapadia, Deepika Padukone and Arjun Kapoor.

The story revolves around five dysfunctional characters of Fredie, Rosie, Don Pedro, Angie and Savio who take a road trip to find Fredie’s love Stefanie Fernandes whom Fredie had confessed his love 46 years ago through a letter which never reached Stefanie.

The movie is being produced by Dinesh Vijan and presented by Fox Star Studios. Performances by the principal cast would be the sole highlight of the movie. The movie is a bilingual in English and Hindi and releases tomorrow 12th Sept’14.

“Creature” is a monster sci-fi thriller directed by Vikram Bhatt staring Bipasha Basu, Pakistani actor Imran Abbas Naqvi & Mukul Dev as the principal cast.

The story happens when Ahana decides to buy a property in a secluded hill and converts it into a hotel, problem starts when the guests gets attacked by a mysterious creature and are killed. Ahana decides to fight the evil.

Presented by T-Series and produced by Bhushan Kumar and Kishan Kumar the movie has music by Mithoon and Tony Kakkar. In accentuate the horror quotient the movie is being presented in 3D.

It looks like a quintessential Vikram Bhatt horror movie which he has mastered all these years, and Bipasha seems to have a meaty role after a not so important role in “Humshakals”. The main focus would be on the VFX as well. Let us see whether this movie would be the India’s answer to “Predator”. The movie release tomorrow 12th Sept’14.

Movie Review : Mary Kom

Mary Kom: An Inspiring story with a Sincere Effort

Many times when you watch a movie especially a biopic which has an inspiring story you may overlook the flaws and technicalities, such was my experience with “Mary Kom”.

Debutant Director Omung Kumar brings life the story of Boxing Champion “Mary Kom”. The story & screenplay of Saiwyn Qadras charts the Mary Kom Reviewjourney of a daughter of a simple farmer Mangte Chungneijang from Manipur to becoming the 5 times World Champion MC Mary Kom or Magnificent Mary as she is called.

Saiwyn’s screenplay is shaky in the beginning but concludes on a high note. The first half looks more like a collage of incidents in Mary Kom’s life put on celluloid with no cohesiveness in the narration and everything is shown in a hurry which does not have any emotional connect, but in the second half the movie takes a 360 degree turn in the narration and shows us Mary Kom’s comeback after becoming a mother. The second half the narration shows a lot of depth and emotions which are depicted well concluding the movie to a high octane dramatic end. Though a lot of people will find the climax a bit dramatic but the bottom-line is at the end it strikes the right cord and you come out being proud of Mary Kom and her achievements. The other flaw in the script is that it does not delve deep in the other character’s storyline.

The dialogues by Ramendra Vashishtha and Karan Singh Rathore is good but quite inconsistent in the getting the language and the dialect right. Though the dialogues has a few Manipuri words being used but sometimes the dialect and language of the principal cast look a bit out of place especially Mary Kom’s character.

Omung Kumar’s direction is sincere and honest and it comes through in the narration especially in the second half. The one flaw in Omung’s direction is his hurried narration; he should have paid more heed to the characterization of other principal characters other than Mary Kom’s. Though being Omung’s first film as a director and choosing a biopic as a subject really needs a lot of conviction, and he shows the spark as a director.

Performance wise it is definitely Priyanka Chopra all the way. She is sincere in her portrayal as a boxer Mary Kom, her whole transformation from a glam doll to a boxer physically right from the body language to the way she talks is to be seen to believe. Frankly I had my reservations about Priyanka portraying the role but she has really surprised me with her portrayal. Another stand out performance is of Darshan Kumaar who plays Onler Kom, Mary’s husband the real pillar of strength in the boxer’s life. Darshan ‘s underplaying the portrayal gives the needed depth required, an actor to watch out for. Sunil Thapa as Mary’s coach does a good job.

I have to mention the makeup artist Subhash Shinde who really did a marvelous job of Priyanka’s transformation to Mary Kom, minute details like skin pigmentation etc has been taken care of. The production design by Omung’s wife Vanita Omung Kumar is realistic and convincing. Stunts by Parvez Shaikh and boxing choreography by Robert Miller bring the required authenticity and thrills in the boxing sequences.

Although it is not a “Million Dollar Baby”, but it is definitely an applauding attempt which is worth a watch, I will go with Three and a Half Stars…..

Movie Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars (3.5 / 5)

Trivia : Bollywood Influence on West

“Don’t Phunk with My Heart” by The Black Eyed Peas was inspired by Bollywood Songs

It is not always that Bollywood gets inspired by the West, but sometimes West also gets inspired by Bollywood like “Don’t Phunk with My Heart” the 2005 Grammy Award winning song by the band “The Black Eyed Peas’ was inspired by two Bollywood songs, the beginning note is inspired from the song “Ye Mera Dil Pyar Ka Deewana” from Amitabh Bachchan’s Don (1978) and the rest of the song is inspired by the song “Ae Naujawan Hain Sab” from Feroz Khan directed and acted Apradh (1972), coincidentally both the songs had music by Kalyanji Anandji, sung by Asha Bhonsle and both the songs were picturized on Helen.