The trick with mixing up genres is to make sure that the story contains the right mix of the conventional and the subversive. It’s always fascinating to see the supernatural element presented on screen out of the traditional genre of horror and even more interesting when comedic and romantic elements are added into the mix. Therefore, when the promos of Phillauri showed up, promising an amusing tale of a young groom haunted by the spirit of a feisty woman from a different era, one did wonder if Anushka Sharma has something new up her sleeve, or is Phillauri another case of old wine in a new bottle?Continue reading “Phillauri Movie Review: The High and the Spirits”
Directed by: Abhishek Chaubey; Written by: Sudip Sharma
Starring: Shahid Kapoor, Alia Bhatt, Kareena Kapoor, Diljit Dosanjh
Udta Punjab would go down as one of the most talked about movies from Bollywood even before it was actually screened, our own desi version of Passion of the Christ, if you will. So instead of delving on the entire saga from CBFC’s preposterous treatment of the film for so-called “profanities and mature content” (I didn’t know Udta Punjab was a pioneering film in this regard, but let’s stay politically correct, shall we) to the controversial leak at the time of release, let’s instead review the film itself for a change.Continue reading “Udta Punjab Movie Review: A Film That Flew for the Stars but got the Moon”
There is nothing quite as entertaining as a good controversy. And if this controversy involves Bollywood and the Government, you can be sure of the news channels having their fill of this TRP fodder until the movie finally releases (Or if it does, in most cases). Abhishek Chaubey, who made most viewers sit up and take notice with a crackling debut in Ishqiya, and followed it up with Dedh Ishqiya, a sequel that outshone the original, moves away from the badlands of Uttar Pradesh into the lush green fields of Punjab, and shows us the underbelly of the drug mafia that seems to have eaten away at the Punjabi youth and in the process, drives away in the opposite direction of the Yash Chopra school of filmmaking. But, is Udta Punjab a piece of mediocre cinema trying to stay in the limelight through a never-ending stream of controversies, or is it truly that subversive piece of mainstream cinema that has the censor board frothing at the mouth?Continue reading “Udta Punjab Movie Review: Flight Of the Phoenix”
So, who was scared/wary of Udta Punjab and its supposedly ‘damaging content’?
When I saw the film today, midst all the surround sound and fury, this question kept coming to my mind every now and then – like how ‘hurt’ keeps coming back to haunt fragile Indian sentiments. Because an hour into the film and you realize that it has nothing, absolutely nothing that can damage the reputation of Punjab or the dwellers of that state. More importantly, the film never ever glorifies substance abuse, it rather showcases horrors of addiction in such a naked, brutal manner that even an average cigarette smoker (cigarette that contains only tobacco and nothing else) would also be shaken.Continue reading “Udta Punjab Movie Review: The High of Coming Out of a Theater Feeling Low”
I grew up getting reasonably exposed to Punjabi Cinema thanks to the one & only Doordarshan. India’s National broadcaster in the 1980’s especially kept experimenting with content and television slots and movies-Hindi, regional and even International would keep figuring prominently across the same. Starved of any other options for entertainment in those days, kids like me then were more than addicted to Television. A particularly curious movie slot which remained for some time on Doordarshan was on Thursday evenings. This wasn’t a very popular slot and chances are that most people today may not even remember the same unlike that of the Saturday & Sunday evening slots for Hindi films or the Sunday afternoon slot for regional cinema, mostly comprising of award winning films. Incidentally years later after D.D had long withdrawn the Thursday evening movie slot; they went on to introduce a Tuesday afternoon slot as well. But let’s talk about all that some other day, as I must now tell you why I am talking about all this anyways.Continue reading “Punjab 1984 Movie Review: History Retold Dramatically, the Right Way Though”