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Friday, July 31, 2015

Drishyam: Visuals may be deceptive.

Drishyam, a Bollywood adaptation of a blockbuster Malayalam movie, is a story of Vijay Salgaonkar (Ajay Devgn) who runs a cable business, his wife, Anu (Ishita Dutta) and two daughters.


The family gets embroiled in a murder when the son of the Inspector General is killed while attempting to blackmail them. It is now upto Vijay to protect all the members from the cops. 

The IG is played by Tabu and Rajat Kapoor is the helpless father. 

The first half of the movie lacks pace, but the impetus is provided by Tabu in the latter half. Though the audience is kept interested throughout the film by director, Nishikant Kamat, the mystery element and the thrills are lacking. Ajay Devgn and Tabu usually come up with power packed performances, but here their roles are quite restrained. Except for a few guffaws, humor and music is non existent. 

This two and a half hour potboiler lacks steam to get the audience to the theaters. 

Rating: 2.5

Saturday, July 25, 2015

Masaan: Quality cinema

Masaan, a colloquial word in Banaras for a cremation ground, follows four characters whose lives are connected by the Ganga. Vicky Kaushal, Richa Chadda, Shweta Tripathi, Sanjay Mishra and Pankaj Tripathi lead the cast. 

The plot revolves around two stories that run parallel along the banks of the Ganges. 
1⃣A sexual escapade in a dingy hotel room goes wrong when the couple is caught in the act by the cops. A tragedy follows, which affects the lives of all the people involved in the mess. 

2⃣A young couple, fresh in love, court around irrespective of their caste status, till tragedy strikes. 

The film is all about how one copes with these personal tragedies, fights with one's own demons and moves on in life. 

A storyline which is simple at heart, without the fancy locales, lacking the routine Bollywood masala, but highly endearing. 
Richa Chadda as the damsel in distress is very convincing. Sanjai Mishra, as the father who has to undergo all the duress because of his daughters misdeeds comes up with a superlative performance. He sure is a highly underrated actor. Vicky Kaushal and Shweta Tripathi as the love birds strike us with their innocence. 
The film however belongs to the debutant director, Neeraj Ghaywan who left his job as an Engineer with MBA to pursue his passion in film direction. The sequences, where the urchins dive in the river to fish out coins and when the male protagonist breaks down in front of his friends, are crisply directed. 

The background score that takes you across Sangam lingers on. 

It was surprising to see a foreigner couple at the theater for this movie, but the English subtitles and the response this film generated at Cannes probably explained it. 

Accolades coming from Mrs Shabana Azmi, the queen of non mainstream cinema says it all. 

Recommended audience: Couples. 

Friday, July 17, 2015

Bajrangi Bhaijaan: Don't think anybody would miss.

Come Eid, come Salman. This has become  the norm since the last few years. Unchallenged till date, our Bhaijaan has almost always ruled the Box Office. Eid 2016, however promises to be a different game with the Badshaah  threatening to tread into Salman's territory. 

Pawan Kumar Chaturvedi fondly called Bajrangi, as his name suggests is a true Hanuman devotee. He happens to stumble upon a 6 year old mute girl who seems to have separated from her parents and is unable to trace back her residence. His love, Rasika, is his motivation to help the girl reunite with her parents in Pakistan. 
Once Pawan decides that he has to take her across the border, there is no stopping him. Chand Nawaz, a media reporter,  is his only support in the foreign country. Will our Bhai succeed in his mission? 
Pawan Kumar as played by our Sallu endears straight away to our hearts. He doesn't get to showcase his Salmanisms here but he gets us high on the emotional quotient. His lady love played by Kareena Kapoor Khan has a significant role in the first half of the movie but is replaced by  Nawazzuddin Siddiqui, the reporter in the second half. 
Harshaali Malhotra, as the Pakistani girl is superb. 
The music is good for a few numbers including the "Selfie le le" and the Adnan Sami song. 
The script has numerous flaws but all said and done, a year is not complete without watching a Salman starrer. 

Just go for it!!