Movie Review: Welcome Back

Welcome Back: Slap Stick & Brainless comedy is BACK

Statutory Warning: While watching “Welcome Back” please keep your brains aside….Welcome Back Poster

Anees Bazmi is back with the sequel of his 2007 hit “Welcome” and his genre of comedy which is completely over the top, chaotic and off course lack of story….

“Welcome Back” starts again with Uday Bhai (Nana Patekar) and Majnu Bhai (Anil Kapoor) who again fall for the same girl Chandni (Ankita Shrivastava) but they need to get their sister Ranjana (Shruti Hasan) married to a decent guy, but the problem is she is in love with Ajju Bhai (John Abraham) who is Dr Ghungru’s (Paresh Rawal) son. Confused??? Don’t be because there is no cohesive story….

Story (or lack of it) is by Anees Bazmi & Rajeev Kaul and the screenplay is credited to a list of writers Anees Bazmi, Rajeev Kaul, Rajan Aggarwal & Praful Parekh, still the screenplay is inconsistent and looks like various situations have been first written and then all of them have been collectively put to make a screenplay. The emphasis is on Slapstick comedy and bizzare situations in an attempt to make us laugh. To give credit to the writers some of the sequences do make you laugh but then such sequences are limited. The sequences between Uday Bhai and Majnu Bhai are the only once which are worth a laugh rest all is trash in the name of comedy. Rather after certain point of time the sequences are monotonous. The climax is the most bizarre that I have seen for a long time. Overall a very sub standard writing….

The Dialogues by Raaj Shaandilyaa compliments the slap stick comedy theme of the screenplay but is quite irritating as well. The best dialogues are when Uday and Majnu interact…

It is the performances which are the saving grace to some extent. Nana Patekar as Uday Shetty is the best amongst the cast, his straight face portrayal will make you laugh and some of the so called comic moments have been provided by Nana Patekar. Anil Kapoor as Majnu also does complete justice to the character and the combination of both Nana & Anil Kapoor as Uday Bhai & Majnu Bhai is the highlight of the movie as it was in the previous part “Welcome”. John Abraham as Ajju Bhai a.k.a Ajay is a complete misfit, though he tries hard to be the rowdy gangster but fails miserably with only one expression all throughout the movie, honestly speaking John should stop trying comic roles as he is a Disaster, he should stick to action films which suits his physique and his frown face. Paresh Rawal again reprises is his earlier role of Dr Ghungru and he keeps his character exactly the same as it was in the previous movie. Nasseruddin Shah as Wanted Bhai brings some stability to the chaos and proves his mettle yet again by performing well, even though the writing was faulty, in short rising above the writing, a true performer. The girls Dimple Kapadia is utterly wasted as Maharani, Shruti Hasan as Ranjana is there only to look good and newcomer Ankita Shrivastava as Chandni was only there to look sexy and with skimpiest and garish dresses and even more garish make up. Shiney Ahuja as Honey looks confused as if he has landed on the sets by mistake. As for the rest of the cast the less said the better. Frankly speaking I missed Akshay Kumar tremendously….

Though a whole list of music composers have been credited for the music namely Anu Mallik, Meet Bros Anjjan, Yo Yo Honey Singh, Siddhant Madhav & Mika Singh, but unfortunately none of the compositions are worth while…rather some of the songs are outright cheap and so is the choreography by Ganesh Acharya…

Anees Bazmi  seems to be still stuck to his early 2000 formula of slap stick comedy which looks dated today and even if this movie works in the box office, still I think Anees Bazmi should rethink about the kind of script he writes and the kind of movie he makes if he wants to continue making movies in these times.

There is no problem of slap stick but only if it has a cohesive script, which was nonexistent in “Welcome Back”….

I will go with Two & a Half Stars… One additional star for Nana Patekar, Anil Kapoor & Nasseruddin Shah

Movie Rating: (2.5 / 5)

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 / 5)

Watch the trailer

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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….

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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…..