Review of Latest Hindi Movies

Friday, April 18, 2014

Two (2) States - Review - Worth Watching!

It's been a long time since I have been anticipating a Hindi Movie. In fact, I had given up on Hindi movies this year as some very forgettable movies with weird names have been released to equally damning reviews. However, 2 States, breaks that trend and not surprisingly - I liked it. 

2 States works because it's unabashedly indian with a bit of western values thrown in. It's based on the popular novel by "2 States" by Chetan Bhagat. Giving full credit to the team who made this movie- they stayed true to the book and in my opinion, made a movie better than the book!!

Let me tell you what I loved. The setting, the clothes (especially Alia Bhatt's ). She has worn some lovely Kurtis and south Indian Sarees in the movie. I can see them becoming a rage. The red saree she wears at the end, during the marriage, is simply exquisite. Secondly, the narrative is easy and fluid. In fact the film flows and you don't notice the passage of time. No time is wasted. 

Third, the music is good. After a long time, some good decent music in a movie. The song Locha-se-Ulfat ho gaya is catchy. The background score works. 

Fourth, Arjun kapoor - He is a new comer; did come across a bit wooden, but I think he has great potential. He did a fine job and though it seemed that Alia Bhat would overshadow him (she did in a few scenes) but, he held on and marked his presence. Watch out for him. 

Finally Alia. Among the new actresses, she is has great potential and has done some good work already. She was in charge here - Of the relationship, of the movie. Great job!!. Ronit roy and Amrita Singh as Arjuns parents are good and so are Alia's parents - Revathi, Shiv Kumar as Ananya's parents also contribute effectively. 

The screenplay is good and flows. the direction is spot on (never a dull moment) and editing is tight. All what I expect of Karan Johar - and he delivers again.... 

You all know the story. I saw it in South India and certain dialogues like " All Madrasis are Black and Punjabis are loud and uncultured" could raise a stink.. but the audience lapped it up and CLAPPED and the end of the movie. haven't seen that in a while!!!

Finally, 2 States works because its about love and family. Ananya, though a Tamil Brahmin, eats meat and drinks, but still obeys her parents. Arjun kapoor - lives in dysfunctional household, but still yearns for his parents and gives them a chance- doesn't give up on them. I think thats what we want to watch and want. Loving Family, loving spouse and all of us embracing our differences to make things work.  Thats our India Today...

I would rate it 4 stars and recommend everyone to watch it. 

Rating -  ****  (heart says 1/2 more because I am a romantic at heart)

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Shaadi Ke Side Effects - As Bad as the movie's side effects!

Farhan Akhtar, Vidya Balan - The movie must be good, or rather, the movie should be good. So with great expectations, I ventured into the hall for a dekko. I must say, I made up for my lack of sleep last night!

Thats what happens to the most awaited rom-com of the year! Its like a ho-hum marriage between the movie and the audience. Well , getting back to the movie.

The movie starts on a promising note with a role play thrown in - Sid (farhan) picks up Trisha (Vidya) in a disk and in a few minutes, cannot keep their hands off each other. One thing leads to another and they both end up in a hotel room. But Big brother is watching (Hotel CCTV).!!! The security officer comes knocking and reprimands Sid for his actions, however, when Sid tells him that Trisha is his wife and this Role play was done to keep things spiced up in their marriage, the security officer becomes his fan and asks Sid for some relationship advice!!!! WTH.

Well, thereafter, the movie is a set of cliches. Guy cant grow up, the wife is the only responsible one and blah, blah. Along comes a baby and trisha goes bananas. From Sid centric to Baby centric (cute kid but the casting director got it wrong with this kid!!!).  Dads are depicted as either complete wimps or those Tiger Dads who will push and shove everyone in the kids party to get the goodies from the balloon... with the wife looking at him with adoring eyes. If the director wanted us to see the foolishness of all this, tongue in cheek, he did'nt succeed!!!!

So he goes to another "Perfect Dad"- Ram Kapoor for advice. Ram takes off a couple of days a month to a hotel for some me time, so that he can get back to being the perfect dad... and reduce the number of fights with his wife.  Trying to follow this, Sid takes off on a similar journey, succeeding at first but then, foolishly comes clean with his wife, who just shuts him out over this "Betrayal". God forbid if he had an affair!!! She would have donned Kali Mata avtaar and made blood her favourite drink!!!!

There are lotsa twist and turns with a couple of funny moments thrown in, but overall , the story and screen play disappoint. I'M SORRY is the most popular dialogue in the movie, with all the husbands forever apologising. So according the the movie, the side effects are:-

1. I'M Sorry works in all cases, even if you have won the nobel prize!

2. Women change after Marriage and post childbirth, are completely unreasonable. Nothing that the guy does or say, will be correct. period.

3. If you work too hard to meet her expectations, she will crib you have no time for her, and if you spend time with her, she will crib that you have no money to meet her requirements!!!!

4. The modern woman cannot live without a maid...even if the hubby is willing to help!!!

5. Husbands and Fathers cannot even think of going back to a semblance of their old lives - Wives will not allow it!!!!

6. What ever happiness you give her is only fleeting- She will think of something which is your fault in making her happy !!!!! You can never make her happy!!!!!

The movie didn't work for me because what was portrayed was too cliched and ..lets face it, boriiiiiing. The subject had tremendous potential but sadly, it fell way short. Pyaar ke side effects was wayyy better and entertaining. Rahul Bose and Mallika Sherawat worked ,., but alas , Vidya and Farhan failed miserably to create that chemistry. I wouldn't be surprised if guys stop marrying after this movie!!!!

Should you watch it. Well, it depends. If you are an incurable romantic- go ahead, if you are a guy - definitely avoid. The single guys may be able to - Married guys - No chance :D

Rating :- **

Friday, January 17, 2014

Dedh Ishqiya - Must watch

Ishqiya was a brilliant all round movie with top class acting, gripping script and classy cinematography. A sequel would be challenging to make as sequels  are seldom better or even as good as the original. So with a sense of foreboding I landed up to watch Dedh Ishqiya one Saturday afternoon, only to be pleasantly surprised at the outcome :)
The casting in the movie is as great as the first one. Naseeruddin (Khalu) and Arshad (Babban) are arguably the most lovable Scoundrels on the screen today. Madhuri and Huma , most probably, a pairing no one saw coming do a fine job of adding a twist to the ending.. The rest play a great supporting cast (Vijay Raaz as Jaan Mohammed and Manoj Pahwa as Noor Mohammed Italvi...

The movie starts with Babban in trouble with his uncle and is about to be buried. His uncle treats him a reason to keep on living and allows his to escape from time to time. The two scoundrels are upto no good as usual and steal a necklace. However, the heist goes wrong and the two have to separate. Babban gives up Khalu as lost/dead. 

The movie revolves around a challenge thrown by Shahi Begum (aka Madhuri), who has proclaimed that she would marry any poet who can win her heart. Its an open challenge and many wannabe's who want to win her heart come to compete. One of the competitors is obviously Jaan Mohammed , the local goonda who wants to be a Nawab and is rich. The other is Khalujaan, who has been yearning for Shahi Begum for a long time.  The entire plot revolves around the shenanigans of this ensemble to win her heart. A word for Huma Qureshi - she plays  Madhuri's lady in waiting (a brazen hussy with no qualms!!) quite convincingly. She comes across as a sensual temptress of yore and is a welcome addition to the script. 

The script is good at the start and maintains the momentum, but somewhere towards the last 45 mins, it starts meandering and borders on the ridiculous. I agree with the writers who wanted to give a twist to the ending, but the manner in which it has been executed leaves the much to be desired. 

Acting is top class and makes the film engaging. Madhuri and Naseeruddin once again prove that good actors need not get sidelined to Mom-Dad roles when they age. They can play the lead comfortably and carry it off. 

The movie is slow placed and full of twists like the old historical drama's. The ending is unconventional and  is probably a first in Hindi movies. I would recommend people to watch it atleast once to develop a taste for a finely crafted movie unlike the wham-Bams like Dhoom 3 and chennai express that we are slowly getting accustomed to. 

Rating - *** 1/4

Friday, December 20, 2013

Dhoom 3 or Doom 3 !!! The reluctant review

The Dhoom series, so far, has been quite path breaking and interesting. This particular edition of Dhoom, clearly, breaks the momentum!!. 
Right off, at the start, the movie meanders, in trying to build up the background on the lead characters. In doing so, they manage to kill the pace and make it almost tedious. The narrative is slow and laborious (though Jackie Shroff in a cameo is impressive !). The pace picks up after the interval but is it it too late??

Ok, the good part. Action sequences are great and well shot. No expense has been spared. The motorcycles are far more capable than even Batman's car!!!.  Aamir's acting is excellent as usual, but I felt it to be a bit mechanical. There was no emotiona connect between  him and the audience. Katrina looks fab and thats just about it. The motorcycles have more screen time than her!! 

The bad part!! Where do I start? The story is weak and what is even weaker is the thrill of the robbery is missing. I mean, there are three  robberies, but we are only shown action sequences post the robberies!!! How does the robbery take place, the planning etc are all missing. The movie seems to be an excuse for displaying chases with a storyline thrown in between. Abhishek and Uday Chopra are bland and repetitive. 

There are too many loose ends and many things that dont make sense. Less said the better. 

The so called twist is also quite obvious. Though the movie picks up pace and shows promise post the interval, it leaves us unfulfilled. Definitely Aamir's worst movie ever.  Considering the fact that I caught a 10 min nap and still picked up the story line without a problem....

Definitely a miss. See Dhoom 2. Its far better and tighter. This one is a definite miss, even if you want to see only Aamir. 

Rating : - **  (I'm being generous!!)

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Goliyon ki Rasleela - RamLeela - Vibrant Gujarat !!!

What hype has been created around this movie!! First, the music created a flutter with its folksy-fusion feel and energy, then the promotions with Ranveer and Deepika, literally scorching the telly with their chemistry and finally, the audience reaction post the release. Now a days, I just hear Ram-Leela (Krissh and the other movies seem to have disappeared from discussions. 

Coming back to the movie, this is a Either-you-hate-it or You-Love-it movie. You know its surreal, but it still captivates you. You know its illlogical, but you still want to sit through it. You will find over 47 minutes of songs in the movie and compare it with chayyageet but you will still sit through it. The movie is compulsive, obsessive and fatally grand. 

Sanjay Leela Bhansali has painted a canvas of Gujarat - Vibrant Gujarat (Modi inspired???) , with a riot of colours, music and explosive emotions. A violent gujarat seems almost a paradox, but love and violence are shown to go hand in hand. As the credits bring out - This movie is SLB's version of Romeo and Juliet - by Shakespeare and believe me, it captures the essence, the comedy, the tragedy of the original. The emotions are unrestricted in their intensity, be it hate, love or sadness.

The backdrop of the film is in the Rann of Kutch and the life of two warring clans - Sanedo's and Rajri's. Sanedo's are rich, Rajri's are poor. They both deal in arms - in fact, guns and bullets are sold in the open along with potatoes and bread. The enmity between the clans dates back over 500 years. 
Ram - Ranveer Singh- the son of the head of the Rajri clan - runs a porn parlour and other such businesses and leela-Deepika is the daughter of the head of the Sanedo Clan - Supriya Pathak . The story revolves around how they meet, fall in love and overcome obstacles.. but as this is an adaptation of Romeo and Juliet , you know how this ends. We all wait for the HOW????

Herein in lies the movies weakness. Amidst the grandeur, the photography and music, the script meanders, it flounders and finally comes to life in the endgame, but fails to please as it been left too late. The twist is brilliant, but I only wish it had come near the interval. Too many songs take away the urgency and intensity of the movie and make the audience believe that the director wanted a long movie, so he stretched it. A shorter, snappier movie would have made this movie a brilliant one. 

The lead pair are brilliant - Deepika is effortlessly sexy and confident, Ranveer is the Alpha Male with a soft side and together they make a potent combination. The unabashed sexual chemistry portrayed between Deepika and Ranveer is a refreshing change from the subtle and muted scenes we are used to... :) 

The songs are beautifully composed, but there are far too many of them - too much of a good thing is also bad!!! The best song is "Nagada Sang Dhol" as its a visual treat and the start of the endgame. The picturisation is a visual delight with the Sanedo's in Red and white and Ranveer in Blue. I just loved the contrast, the mood the song portrays... here's a look

Ram Leela could've been the first  movie I would have given five stars to, but the script and editing have let it down - But please watch this movie on a large screen, and get immersed in it. Leave logic aside and soak in the emotions the lead pair go through. Feel the excitement, the pounding heartbeats and remember the first time you fell in love, that feeling of never wanting to let her/him go, to spend every waking moment in his/her arms, the wretched feeling of separation, the sinking feeling when you both fought, the tears, the joy.. 
The "leela" that SLB tried create didn't quite work out to be perfect... but  hey.. just do it..

Rating : ***1/2