Rangoon Movie Review: Bloody Hell of a Show

Vishal Bhardwaj! 2 words that are enough to grab the attention of anybody who possesses a deep, undying love for Bollywood, for he’s a film-maker whose brand of cinema may be rooted in a filmi duniya, but when he narrates a tale, it breaks almost every rule that Bollywood throws at it, right from the narrative, to the characters, to the music and almost everything else that he throws into his filmmaking process. After hitting a high note in his last outing, his adaptation of the Bard’s Hamlet, set in 90s Kashmir, the announcement of his next project being a period drama, set during the last days of the freedom struggle did create some buzz, and with him casting Saif and Shahid, 2 actors whose best performances have come under his direction, and the mercurial Kangna Ranaut, one might look forward to a spectacular cinematic experience. But is Rangoon the VB magnum opus that we’ve all been waiting for?Continue reading “Rangoon Movie Review: Bloody Hell of a Show”

Talvar Movie Review: Is it sharp enough?

This review comes in a bit late and by now most of you have figured out what the movie is based on. For those who haven’t been in touch with the digital world for the past week (like me), Talvar is based on the 2008 Noida “double murder” of Arushi Talwar and Hemraj ( Get the title now? So so subtle right ?. More on the title later). I had seen the promos of this films a while ago and to be frank they didn’t quite impress me. It seemed like one of those films whose whole purpose was to cash in on the hype. But back then I didn’t notice that it was written by Vishal Bhardwaj, for whom I have high regards. If that was not compelling enough, the movie has got some good reviews overall. So coming to the question that matters,is this Talvar sharp enough to make the cut ? Read on to find out.Continue reading “Talvar Movie Review: Is it sharp enough?”

Talvar Movie Review: Oh, What A Film!

I wanted to take some time out after watching Meghna Gulzar and Vishal Bharadwaj’s Talvar earlier today before I write about it, just to consolidate my thoughts. Now, we all are very well acquainted with the Aarushi Talwar double murder case of 2008 which is still ongoing. Her parents are still in jail and fighting for innocence largely due to a botched up crime scene and lack of factual evidence. If anyone has not heard about it, it is might as well suggested to take the subscription of latest newspaper daily with immediate effect, or alternately, just open your eyes and ears to the world. Continue reading “Talvar Movie Review: Oh, What A Film!”

Haider Movie Review: Love-ed

Sometimes it is so difficult to collect all the thoughts to write a review for a movie. What do I do then? I ask myself. Us Bhakts of Bhardwaj get swept away, most of the times, in blind faith. But the truth is, there is no way you can ignore the reality, as I learnt while I was talking to Sethu. The truth, in all of its probability is, that this Vishal Bhardwaj’s masterpiece…is not aberration free.  There are things in the plot that call for an unwelcome “what a coincidence.” There are things that call for an unwelcome “really?” moment. I mean how do you respond to a thing that’d happen – even in the context of the movie—but won’t because it’s a movie, based on a play — so there are events pending to happen? How do you respond to characters that exist because…well, it’s convenient for the storyteller? And no, I am not talking about Irrfan Khan’s Roohdaar (without trying to spoil anything.) There are coincidences, and character decisions — and yes they can happen, but! — But that jarred. Because it felt like some kind of an easy make-shift solution to drive the movie forward. That makes things look superficial. It takes away the gravity from a scenario otherwise really intense. It hinders seamless involvement.Continue reading “Haider Movie Review: Love-ed”

Haider (2014) Movie Review: The Return Of The Bard

Language : Hindi | Running Time : 162 Minutes | Director : Vishal Bhardwaj 

Irrfan Khan as Roohdhar, making a special appearance, dressed in white and sporting black goggles, walks onto the screen, mist clearing and I was reminded of a heroine walking into a hero’s life in our movies from the 80s. If not the same, the scene surely brings a similar effect on us. We are left gasping at the majestic beauty of the shot, the exhilarating bass and electric guitars of “Aao Na” announcing his presence. It is right there with some of the best intros I’ve seen in Indian cinema, because it elevates a simple intro into one filled with mystery and a desire to follow the man ourselves. It is something that draws whistles, claps and heightens our frenzy and Vishal Bhardwaj’s “Haider” will ask you the question, “To be or not to be” in every scene it throws at you.Continue reading “Haider (2014) Movie Review: The Return Of The Bard”

Haider: Trailer

Haider Poster 1After adapting William Shakespeare‘s Macbeth into Maqbool and Othello into Omkara , Vishal Bhardwaj is now ready with his third film under his Shakespeare trilogy, Haider which is based on Hamlet. Produced by Vishal and UTV, the film is written by Vishal himself and Basharat Peer. Based in Kashmir the film has an ensemble star cast comprising of Shahid Kapur, Shraddha Kapoor, Tabu, Kay Kay Menon, Irrfan Khan, Aamir Bashir, Kulbhushan Kharbanda, Ashish Vidyarthi etc. Of course the music is by Vishal while the lyrics are by Gulzar. Pankaj Kumar is the DOP and Aarif Sheikh the editor of the film.Continue reading “Haider: Trailer”

Nominations For the Best of Bollywood 2013!

Like most other years, 2013 too has been an eventful year for the Hindi film industry. And unlike other years, 2013 was also the 100th year for the Hindi film industry. However, the centenary wasn’t really a landmark in terms of quality; we didn’t have a watershed of extraordinary films. Yes, we had a few brilliant pieces of cinema but we also had a truckload of terrible movies. What has been most encouraging in this entire melee is the gradual acceptance and support rendered to smaller films. While we had Kiran Rao helping a “Ship of Theseus” to get a release, we had a Karan Johar taking “The Lunchbox” out to the masses. In this post, I enumerate my (completely) personal list of favourite films of 2013 and their different aspects. These are my nominations for the best of Bollywood in the year 2013. While I have considered six nominees for every category (most of which are non-technical), I have added one more as “Almost There”, whom / what I feel is good but not enough to be on the list. Would love to get your vote from the nominees or any additional candidate you feel like.Continue reading “Nominations For the Best of Bollywood 2013!”

Ship of Theseus: A Perspective

Ship of Theseus PosterThe Sydney Film Festival has been increasing in popularity over the last few years. In recent years, there have been numerous Indian movies, short movies and documentaries that have been showcased in the festival. I have been fortunate enough to see some fantastic movies before some others around the world get an opportunity to see them.Continue reading “Ship of Theseus: A Perspective”

Ship of Theseus: Official Trailer

Ship of Theseus PosterAfter charming viewers at various film festivals, both in India and overseas Anand Gandhi‘s critically acclaimed film-Ship of Theseus is finally getting a much deserved theatrical release in India. Thanks to the association of Kiran Rao who is now presenting the film, UTV will   be releasing the film on 19th July across cinemas in India.Continue reading “Ship of Theseus: Official Trailer”