Netflix India has garnered a reputation for churning out one after another boring series and films, I am sure that their recent original film, Class Of ’83 can firmly get a place in the walk of shame. And with this being the of the third collaboration of Netflix with Red Chilies Entertainment after Bard of Blood and Betaal, should lead them to introspect on the quality of their output. Or may be there is an aim to get the audience to unsubscribe from Netflix, if that is the aim they are on their path.Continue reading “Class of ’83 Movie Review: A Misfired Shot!”
Oh, those faces!
Those familiar faces we have seen numerous times as we revisit the movie classics and hits from yesteryear. Faces that are very much part of the movies that we grew up with. Many of them without whom those iconic scenes are never complete. And yet unfortunately, many of them remain faces with their names still unknown to many.Continue reading “Kaamyaab (2020) Movie Review: When the lights go off!”
BADLA is one of those words that has a duality about it. In Hindi, it can mean ‘revenge’ as well as ‘change’. And in Sujoy Ghosh’s latest thriller, he manages to incorporate both types of Badla into the sweet mix as he brings together the talents of Taapsee Pannu and the evergreen legend Amitabh Bachchan and place them in a room together to create the intended sparks and magic.
Ghosh, thanks to the Kahaani series, has become a trusted name to the ‘thriller’ genre. And therefore the producers (Red Chillies and Azure Entertainment) have got things easy when you have a name like Ghosh to associate with your thriller, an official remake of a 2016 Spanish thriller The Invisible Guest. The first major change Ghosh does here is the gender-swap on his principal characters from the Spanish original.
Though I haven’t seen the original, it does not take much to predict the final outcome of things. If you pay attention to the details, you can sniff it out right away. And that is not because the character of Badal keeps reminding you of it. But because the structure is such that the main portions are set within a confined room, involving just the two major characters. So you know the surprise also has to spring in from this setting. But Ghosh smartly manages to throw in enough curveballs to keep one guessing till the very end, and even throw offtrack every now and then.
The case: A crime in a hotel room in Glasgow. A man murdered, while a woman is found in the same room, next to the body. No signs or possibilities of any entry or exit with no presence of a third person.
The prime suspect is the woman of course, who happens to be Naina (Taapsee) , a highly successful businesswoman who was having an extra marital affair with the deceased. With all evidences pointing to Naina, an expert lawyer Badal Gupta has been roped in as a last minute ditch effort to save the client who stands to lose it all personally and professionally.
Badal, who has the reputation of never having lost a case, is determined to win this too before retiring professionally. However to do so, he needs to get to the bottom of the whole story and for which he drops into Naina’s flat where she is under house-arrest to dig up the whole truth of the stories and events around her case. In the three hour conversation that follows, Badal hopes to get Naina to reveal it all, right to the minutest of details that could prove vital to the case.
As we dive in, the audience also discovers how the disappearance of a young man turns also relevant to this whole case. As more questions and answers are poured out, we realise that there is more to what meets the eyes (Naina) and that one needs to look beyond the clouds (Badal) to reach the other side to all this surrounding mystery to the deaths as we navigate through the various versions coughed up.
Somewhere in the middle of these discussions, the lawyer throws up an observation about his edgy client. That of there being two types of clients – one that thinks that they are smarter , and the one that genuinely is. And what he deduces about Naina holds true for the movie too. Here the makers do ‘think’ that they are smarter, but the truth unfortunately isn’t so.
Acting wise roping in the PINK duo was a smart choice even though they are repeating the lawyer-client act, but with more varied shades. Yet , despite the fabulous artists that they are, and despite carrying the entire thing on their shoulders, they fail to bring in that extra zing that could make their respective roles truly memorable and a stand-out.
Tony Luke, here had a much more impactful outing than the roles I have seen him earlier in his Malayalam films. Amrita Singh emerges the surprise package and gets a meaty role to sink her teeth into, despite her limited screen time. Manav Paul puts in an extended cameo or sorts, while British actor Tanveer Ghani stood out rather oddly amidst all these.
Cinematographer Avik Mukhopadhyay manages to capture the cold, brooding winters of Glasgow hauntingly well, whenever the narration escapes from the confines of the flat.
The screenplay keeps twisting and turning things occasionally on its head, keeping the audience very much engaged. Also, the screening where I watched it, thankfully came without an interval, which also helped immensely in keeping the audience on tenterhooks right throughout.
While I could give thumbs up to the staging and the way the cards are played out, the same cannot be said about the problematic “reveal”. It also brings me back to the loopholes that the lawyer bring about how characters develop new skills as necessary as the story goes forward. I do realise that the ending is very much from the original version itself. But then again, the original did not have someone as unique and iconic as Amitabh Bachchan in their cast, did they?
In the world of thrills, this is decent enough even though the pay-off might not be one that had me floored like, say a Kahaani. This is a decent enough thriller from Ghosh that ticks the right boxes, and rides on the talents of its lead actors.
Rating : 3 / 5
Cast: Amitabh Bachchan, Taapsee Pannu, Amrita Singh, Tony Luke, Manav Kaul, Tanveer Ghani
Directed by Sujoy Ghosh
Adapted screenplay by Sujoy Ghosh/ Raj Vasant
There’s a moment, bang in the middle of Jab Harry Met Sejal, when one of the titular characters remarks snidely “This is silly, we need to get out of here”, and you end up thinking to yourself, what if the same had been said by Aditya to Geet (Jab We Met) or Tara to Ved (Tamasha), the seeming voices of reason asking a dreamer to change course, to not fly too close to the sun, to stop sprinting and take a breath. When the promos of JHMS first showed up, it seemed like yet another Imtiaz Ali tale of two strangers in a strange land, but when the two strangers happen to be Shahrukh Khan and Anushka Sharma, can the magic of Jab We Met, the soulfulness of Highway and the pathos of Tamasha be captured again on celluloid?Continue reading “Jab Harry Met Sejal Movie Review: Tab Head Met Wall!”
There is always a certain amount of anticipation that comes with watching an acclaimed director’s follow up to an acclaimed debut feature. When the promos for Gauri Shinde’s debut, English Vinglish first showed up highlighting the return of Sridevi to the big screen, one did approach the film with trepidation as most comeback efforts in Bollywood have displayed a tendency to either be dead on arrival, or crash and burn, Madhuri Dixit’s Aaja Nachle and the Big B’s Mrityudaata coming to mind.Continue reading “Dear Zindagi Movie Review: Talking Heads”
Farah Khan’s latest venture, Happy New Year, is out in theaters this weekend. And even if you are a plonked outcast lying in some run down part of any city in India, or a swanky tycoon flying around the world for business, you would have come across the obnoxiously omnipresent promotional wave of HNY. Much thanks to Farah’s unapologetic muse and the producer of the film, Shah Rukh Khan, and his army of men who have made sure that HNY becomes a household name, even before its release. The first promo did not create the waves SRK or Farah may have expected it to and neither did the subsequent songs, clumsily painting a lopsided picture of HNY. However, this did not stop their team to serenade all our senses with overdoses of publicity for HNY, so much so that it cooked a pretty smashing buzz for the film, whether good or bad, right before its release. Post Tees Maar Khan, has Farah been able to resurrect herself?Continue reading “Happy New Year Movie Review: Nonsense Done Right”
This movie was fun. Guys, wait. Before you start throwing oranges, and bananas, and eggs at me, let me brief it up. I did not like its occasionally serious use of clichés. I did not like its sappy melodrama, and I did not, for the life of me, liked a good part of the song and dance sequences. Parts of them were quite a spectacle, sure, but mostly songs and dances in a movie requiring dance sequences were bland and, unnecessary, at most, and hindering, at-least.Continue reading “Happy New Year Movie Review: Steal-Deal”
That all eyes have been focusing on Farah Khan’s Happy New Year is no exaggeration by any standard. After all be it her back to back successes with Main Hoon Na and Om Shanti Om, both with Shah Rukh Khan, her first failure in the form of Tees Maar Khan, her subsequent fall out and later patch up with SRK, Farah and her movies have always been in the news. Needless to say it was but natural that people would be curious to know if Happy New Year could bring Farah Khan back to form and if her combination with SRK would turn out to be successful once again. And going by all the buzz right from the release of the first look posters, to the teaser, songs and the trailer, there was no doubt that Happy New Year (or HNY from hereon) would be closely scrutinized as the team geared up for a grand Diwali release.Continue reading “Happy New Year Movie Review: Get Ready for the Party Folks”
Now this is one unique combination. Shah Rukh Khan teams up with director Rohit Shetty for Chennai Express. After receiving much flak for the portrayal of South Indians in Ra. One, Chennai Express seems like a full fledged potboiler owing it’s roots to a variety of South Indian potboilers.Continue reading “Chennai Express : Official Trailer”