Begum Jaan Movie Review: Of Women Behaving Badly

Partition and Prostitution are two plot devices that can ensure a hard hitting cinematic experience if handled with restraint, and end up making a mockery of human tragedy and resilience, if handled without finesse. Therefore, when the promos of Begum Jaan showed up, one ended up being intrigued. A tale set during the partition involving women of the night promised to be a tantalizing premise. And when it is a massive cast headed by Vidya Balan in a never before avatar, one does walk into the theatre with high expectations. So does Begum possess enough Jaan to hook the viewers?Continue reading “Begum Jaan Movie Review: Of Women Behaving Badly”

Veer-Zaara: The Star-Crossed Lovers

The movie begins with these magical word, penned by Javed Akhtar and  narrated by the maverick director Mr. Yash Chopra himself and creates the mood that stays till the end of the film- lyrical & nostalgic.
Continue reading “Veer-Zaara: The Star-Crossed Lovers”

Silsila- the unequal harmony


India is a country where people have worshipped everything that they detest in their real lives. The “Khap Panchayat” kills anyone who doesn’t marry according to the norms of his / her society. A duo that elopes to get married is considered outcast.
But when the lord of their myths kidnaps a woman from her wedding and marries her or manages to get his sister to abscond with his best friend, he is considered as the warrior of love and stories are woven around his valiant act of eloping. When a boy on the street whistles at a girl, he is called an eve-teaser; but when a lord picks at the belle of his village, he is considered ‘Saawariya’! “Krishna” is possibly one of the most worshipped gods in India. But if we look at his story closely, we would see that his life was anything monogamous; neither did he seem to profess a stringent belief on the same.Continue reading “Silsila- the unequal harmony”

Hum : Ek Hi Hai ‘TIGER’

HUM-PosterDuring the late 80’s , the Amitabh Bachchan mania had begun to decline with most of his films failing at the box office. Even films such as Jaadugar, Toofan etc  made  by his most trusted directors such as Prakash Mehra, Manmohan Desai were an embarrassment to Big B’s filmography. Much like his peers such as Dharamendra, Shatrughan Sinha , Amitabh also followed the trend and was a part of many a torturous flicks in the 80’s. Something that was definitely not suited for  the Big B.Continue reading “Hum : Ek Hi Hai ‘TIGER’”

RGV’s most underrated movies

RGV’s most underrated movies

1. Not a Love story

Audiences hated it, critics, even more, but when I watched it, I wasn’t bored; I wasn’t irked by the so called tastelessness, I wasn’t disappointed by the overall film either. Thinking of it, “Not a love story”, may have not explored what people were expecting. It wasn’t that brutal as well, but it wasn’t half as bad as Hindi cinema could possibly be, like the sheer absurdity that is thrown at us day after day, it was far more entertaining, realistic, stylish, thrilling and even slightly funny at times.

Of course this film was not without a couple of short-comings, to see Deepak Dobriyal dwelling in histrionics, Mahie Gill going over the top when she weeps is really awkward, background score literally attacks your eardrums and is almost every time out of the place (if you notice the background score instead of feeling it, then you know it is incorrectly overdone). Moreover, when you see a psychological film, the angst should seep deep inside somewhere and evil does take over, the way it is shot and cut hopping from one condition to another does distract some times.

Ultimately, a film trying to capture mistakes done, one after the other because of the passion or to become a star or out of sheer anguish or confusion or covering the previous mistakes committed, this doesn’t really succeed, but as far as a standalone film is concerned, saying that it isn’t entertaining or absurd is killing quite an interesting and brave film.

My Rating: ★★★

2. Naach

When I watched it, I didn’t read a lot of reviews; I wasn’t that a movie lover and I watched in a cinema hall, it released with 2 other (one passable and another awful) films, Aitraaz and Veer-Zaara (in that order), and I watched all of them one day after the other, as it was Diwali time. A couple of years ago, I watched it again, and I can’t tell you how gloriously, carefully and affectionately I feel this movie is crafted. Between one scene to another, as this film floats with (not that good as it deserved) music and (not as strange as it initially looks) choreography, the way Abhi (Abhishek Bachchan) sees Reva (Antara Mali) create sequences and falling for her, the way her ego avoids genuineness and chooses loneliness considering Abhi’s success, his ignorance. Rarely, I repeat, rarely emotions are captured with such finesse. Ram Gopal Varma has usually shown that he loves his characters, he loves the way they think and he loves the way they ignore to attract and he loves the way they fail to compromise and then compromise, and then art is true, when it can be felt. The complicated feelings, reflected by simple reactions, where they ignore the ones they think, are the only ones they can confide to and they want them but find someone else and that someone else is left confounded, and all this, shot so beautifully and acted so naturally that this film literally breezes through its, not-so-important, story. And then people say, all Ram Gopal Varma is concerned with is Antara Mali’s body, sigh.

My Rating: ★★★½

3. Nishabd

This film, in my opinion and terms, is an achievement for Hindi cinema, not because people think that the subject is brave, but it is an achievement for what it tries to capture, and those are, sentiments, pure, negligent and meticulous. When energy strikes something cold, liveliness is felt. For an old man whose feelings are long lost, all that remains are memories, which could be looked back, again and again.

As I said, Ram Gopal Varma has usually shown that he loves his characters, perhaps Nishabd is a shining example of that. Perhaps he loves those ones more who do smile but aren’t really happy deep inside. Inside they are lonely, they are afraid and they just hope that things will be fine, and they don’t. Nothing really will happen until there is a diametric change and that does happen, and to let it happen they don’t stop or run away but keep on going, until they realize that stupidity has happened and it is too late.

For an old man, retired to tea gardens, all that are pleasing is natural beauty and scenes that he captures on camera, passionately. One day, a visitor comes, a young, energetic, peppy, arrogant girl kid, nothing really happens then. But one day her playfulness gives him an idea to capture on camera, in those stationary, dull moments of life an old man finds life to be captured in its full form, so he does it and from there begins an emotional turmoil, leaving the old man confused and passionate at the same time.

As the above 2, this one is not a perfect film. It would be perfect, if it had ended as meticulously and gradually as it was previously. Barring the last 20-25 minutes of the film the whole film is sheer poetry. And as far as this film is concerned, it is so finely crafted that it tells me, a film-maker wannabe, what a good film really is, what cinema is capable of and slaps me hard in my face, when I think of making a film and then I think of this film, that shouts literally on my face, how shallow we are, in terms of taste in cinema and life over all.

My Rating: ★★★★