Coco & Chavela: Two films that make you fall in love with Mexico

Art evokes empathy, it makes you more open and mindful of others. Cinema has done just that to me and a bit more. Cinema is my guide to the world. It is the lens through which I have come to know people from lands as varied as Japan, Chile and Iran.  Often, I have not just felt empathetic but also deeply fascinated by these people in movies who speak in a language foreign to me. The most recent film to give me the pleasure of this experience was the marvelous animated Pixar feature, Coco.Continue reading “Coco & Chavela: Two films that make you fall in love with Mexico”

Lady Bird Movie Review: Moving, bitter-sweet coming of age drama

Frances McDormand’s angry, grieving mother in McDonagh’s darkly comic, hard-hitting melodrama (Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri) was such a tour-de-force of a performance that I was sure she would walk away with most of the awards this year. But then I got around watching director Greta Gerwig’s solo-debut Lady Bird and I wasn’t so sure anymore.Continue reading “Lady Bird Movie Review: Moving, bitter-sweet coming of age drama”

Wonder Movie Review (2017): Too simplistic for its own good

In a scene in Wonder, the child protagonist Auggie (played by Jacob tremblay), who suffers from a facial deformity, is terribly hurt when he learns of his classmate Julian’s fake show of friendship. The reconciliation between the two millennials, though, doesn’t happen on the playground, but the apology and forgiving takes place in the virtual world of the game of Minecraft. It is a moment that beautifully captures how it is not just the real world in which kids today make friendships. More of such skillfulness and imagination would have made the film far more watchable as it goes on hammering its message of kindness throughout its runtime.Continue reading “Wonder Movie Review (2017): Too simplistic for its own good”

MAMI 2017 Report: Best films from 19th Mumbai Film Festival

Yes, it’s a month late, but i thought that the recommendations in here would come in handy for those who are attending upcoming film festivals like IFFI, IFFK and PIFF.

As usual, the MAMI organised Mumbai Film Festival this year, too, had a great line-up of films from across the globe. But their selection of Indian films (especially Marathi) left a lot to be desired. Apart from the films, any report cannot miss the fact that how well organised this year’s event was compared to previous years. There were no major technical issues with any screenings and even the much feared BookMyShow booking system worked smoothly.

I watched fewer films this year but that meant i didn’t waste time watching abjectly bad movies. Of course, the strategy also meant that i missed out on a few gems as well. So, these are the ones i would highly recommend:Continue reading “MAMI 2017 Report: Best films from 19th Mumbai Film Festival”

Kaasav Marathi Movie Review: Sensitive, nuanced take on depression

Sumitra Bhave & Sunil Sukhtankar – the conscience keepers of Marathi cinema and filmmakers par excellence – are back. If you are familiar with their exceptional body of work, you would know their approach to filmmaking – a pertinent social issue tackled cinematically with utmost sensitivity, grace and sincerity. Often Bhave’s screenplays layer the seemingly simple storyline with deep meanings with the help of metaphors. Their latest Kaasav (Turtle) also uses the same tropes to great effect.Continue reading “Kaasav Marathi Movie Review: Sensitive, nuanced take on depression”

Invisible Guest (Contratiempo) Spanish Movie Review: Fit For Bollywood Remake

The days of Bollywood filmmakers blatantly ripping off Hollywood thrillers are slowly fading away. The internet age has meant that their theft can be immediately caught. Though we still have few films that are quite heavily ‘inspired’, most filmmakers have begun to buy official rights of movies to remake them. Spanish thriller Invisible Guest’s rights have been bought by John Abraham to be remade into Hindi. Now, I happened to watch this Netflix movie and realised that John made a smart move as it is fit for a Bollywood remake. No, I don’t mean it as a compliment.Continue reading “Invisible Guest (Contratiempo) Spanish Movie Review: Fit For Bollywood Remake”

Muramba Movie Review: Finally, 2017 has a Marathi movie worth a visit to the theatres

‘Golden Period of Marathi Cinema’, ‘Marathi New Wave’ are some of the fancy labels that are attached to contemporary Marathi films by bloggers (including, yours truly) and other movie enthusiasts. But the reality couldn’t be farther from it. Yes, there have been few gems that have released every year, but that’s about it. The average quality of Marathi films that release in a year are as low as any other regional industry in the country. Alarmingly, nearly all of the Marathi movies that released in 2016 were declared as commercial duds.

Continue reading “Muramba Movie Review: Finally, 2017 has a Marathi movie worth a visit to the theatres”