Jan 25th was slated to be the battle of the stars- Shahrukh and Hrithik battling it out with Raees and Kaabil respectively. The swords were all out with both the parties battling it out with their PR machinery. Some even called it as a mentor-pupil battle. And it mattered for both the stars as their previous movies were almost a washout (Fan and Mohenjo Daro).Continue reading “Raees vs Kaabil: Clash of the Titans?”
Guddu Rangeela is a prominent singer in Bhojpuri music industry, famous or rather infamous for his songs that are laced with sexual innuendos and crass lyrics. Subhash Kapoor’s film Guddu Rangeela, on the contrary, opens with an absolutely riveting ‘modern devotional song’- Mata Ka Email. While many may not be familiar with the Bhojpuri singer Guddu Rangeela, but the irony of the film, with that same notorious name, starting with a hilarious devotional song will not be lost on someone from Bihar. Sadly, despite a funny start and a reasonably exciting mid-point, Subhash Kapoor’s film squanders its potential in a dreary, lost second half.Continue reading “Guddu Rangeela Review: High on Promise, Low on Delivery”
I was quite happy when I got an opportunity to watch Anurag Kashyap’s Ugly late last year. Post the screening at Cannes earlier in the year (2013) the feedback I had received about the film was not all that great. But then I heard that the film had been re-edited, something which I felt could be a positive move for the film. I have not seen the initial version, but the revised cut which I saw impressed me immensely and I was sure that it would be one of the best Hindi films of the year. Unfortunately Ugly did not make it to theatres in 2013 but I was sure that irrespective of when the theatrical release happens, my feeling about the film would remain the same. Now that I have re-visited the film I am delighted to say that my intuition has come right. Ugly worked for me earlier and it worked for me even now, more on that in a while.Continue reading “Ugly (2014) Movie Review: Dark, Intense and Relevant, Very Relevant”
Finally the wait is over as Anurag Kashyap’s Ugly is going to be released on 26th of December. Considering that the release was announced with just 2 weeks in hand, this is a brave move indeed on behalf of Anurag and the producers and it would be interesting to wait and watch for the result.Continue reading “Anurag Kashyap’s “Ugly”: New Trailer”
Chetan Bhagat is a strange phenomenon. He inspires both fierce loyalty and venomous disdain, at once hailed as the savior of Indian English literature and as having brought about its bastardization. Then again, leaders of revolutions, be they literary or political, are always polarizing figures. You can’t get 5 people to agree on whether James Joyce was a genius or a raving lunatic. As for Bhagat’s literary ability, after having read his books, I am more inclined to believe his detractors, who usually demolish him in far crisper and polished language, than is commonly used by Bhagat’s avowed fanbase, who revert to a kind of pidgin Hinglish lingua franca pioneered by Bhagat and his many imitators. But Bhagat’s own forceful affirmation of a kind of homespun anti-intellectualism is what makes such assessment of his literary worth meaningless; you cannot judge him on criteria he does not aspire to fulfill. You might as well just enjoy what he does have to offer.
What is obvious is that while he does lack a sense of history or literary flourish or even unobvious insight, his undeniable appeal lies in his proud championing of the average Indian Joe, or Jai, if you will. His characters have the ring of authenticity, reflecting the hopes and aspirations of India’s burgeoning young middle classes, an often contradictory, mercurial, infuriating and yet inspiring demographic. And this emphasis on story over style is what makes him such an excellent candidate for adaptation to Bollywood’s glitzy screen – Bombay’s purveyors of dreams have enough tashan for the both of them.
Indian author Chetan Bhagat now writes books so that they can be converted into films. Yes, he has written his two latest books, 2 States and Revolution 2020 for the same purpose. As a novel, 2 States could be one of his better works, though I am not sure if it would still be any ruminating literature. Nevertheless, Bhagat does write engaging tales, rather simplistically, and they are able to engage a wide range of readers across the nation. It is no jaw dropping surprise then that they are made into movies. The first promo of the film 2 States was snazzy but thanda. The song promos were released right after and the music overcame the initial setback with much vim. Past few weeks, the buzz about the film has increased transcendentally and the film seems ready for a huge weekend. At some point in its promotional campaign, I could feel that it did not matter anymore if the film was good or not?