Sunday, July 26, 2015

Masaan - The movie that you shouldn't miss for anything

Masaan is Neeraj Ghaywan's first full length film as a director.  Set in Banaras, the movie follows 2 stories that converge at a later stage. Richa Chadda as Devi Pathak, and Sanjay Mishra as Vidyadhar Pathak (Richa's father), are convincing in their roles and their struggle and acting feels real.
Vicky Kaushal as Deepak Chaudhary, and Shweta Tripathi as Shaalu, are the other half of the story. Masaan has the right amount of every element that makes a perfect film - love, society, sexual encounter, relationships, death. The film wonderfully explores love and relationships in small-town in modern India. The constant struggle faced by people who want to explore their lives and be free of the burden of the society and its rules.
The dialogues, the music and the locations blend in a perfect way to create a cinematic experience that will leave you with lots of emotions. It will make you smile, it will make you cry, it will make you feel the pain and suffering of the actors and their characters. (Song) Mann Kasturi Re by Indian Ocean is a soulful composition.
Avinash Arun, Cinematographer of this film is the Director of Killa (Marathi film), and deserves the credit for the amazing camera work and portraying Banaras and the banks of river Ganga in a picturesque way. Neeraj Ghaywan's hardwork has really paid-off in a big way. To take a risk of making a movie where the actors are in a complete de-glamourized way is a big achievement in itself.
Massan, being an Indo-French co-production got a Cannes showing before it was released in India and that also added to the much hype around the film. It also won 2 awards at the said film festival. Masaan will leave you with emotions and thoughts that will shape your thinking of the society and encourage you to take a deeper look at the happenings in the country.
This film is not to be missed for anything and truly, it is not your average cinema to be ignored.

Saturday, July 25, 2015

Ant-Man - A typical Marvel superhero movie but...

A guy who thinks he knows everything but his wife along with their daughter has left him for a better man who happens to be a cop. The guy who calls himself a cat burglar but gets caught by the police for stealing and when he's out of prison he doesn't have a job, or a home, almost no money and stays at his friend's apartment suddenly happens to find a (superhero) suit as he's the chosen one to save the world.
This film has lots of references to other films. Some of the dialogues seem unoriginal and at time boring. But what's good about Ant-Man is Paul Rudd's and Michael Douglas' acting. (Don't remember the last film I saw which had Paul Rudd in it but this one might just be the one which gives him more films.) Michael Peña brings in the comedy to this one and is funny.
Peyton Reed has done a good job with this one; especially the two scenes where the characters discuss about the job they got to do. Ant-Man has received a Marvel superhero film treatment but still at times you will feel the lack of it. But this may be the case similar to Captain America: The First Avenger and it can get better in the next one. Or maybe not. We'll have to wait for that.
We know what Marvel is trying to do with the entire portfolio of superhero comics and movies under its umbrella and in the process will hit some lows (this film is not that but given the expectations it will feel like one). At 2 hours, Ant-Man feels like a tiny bit stretched couple of times. But overall, good fun to watch as a standalone superhero movie.
I suggest you watch the end of Avengers: Age of Ultron and Captain America: The Winter Soldier before watching this one.
Also wait till the End and the end End (after the credits are over) to get a sense of what you can expect from the next film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe series.

Sunday, July 19, 2015

Bajrangi Bhaijaan - Sense + Salman

Before I start, let me tell you that this review is not for Bhai fans.
So here it goes...

It's not like Salman hasn't done movies that have sense and logic but it's also not like all his movies have sense and logic. Bajrangi Bhaijaan is a bit of both sense & logic (a bit more because it's a Kabir Khan film) and nonsense & no logic.
Let's talk about acting first.
Harshaali Malhotra's character was like "Bin Kahe Bahut Kuch Keh Gaya". Even without the dialogues her character spoke so much about the scenes and about her capabilities as a child actor. She deserves all the attention. Nawazuddin Siddiqui once again proves why he is what he is today. Brilliant acting as always. Kareena Kapoor doesn't have much screen time but isn't boring when she is on screen. Salman Khan - for many will be a surprise package but not for those who have watched Jai Ho. He's definitely improved, changed, and that's visible clearly.
Now on to the dialogues, lyrics, and story.
I'm not going to list all the names of people because that'll make this post too long but everyone associated with the departments mentioned above have done the best they could have to keep the dialogues, lyrics, and story somewhat relevant to today's times.
Now on to Direction.
Kabir Khan yet again delivers a different kind of film with Salman Khan. Nicely shot at wonderful locations in Rajasthan and Kashmir.
I know there are many who don't like Salman and his films and this film will not change your perception about him on a great scale. But I suggest you watch the film for the world we can never have because of politics and politicians. And also watch it for Harshaali Malhotra who definitely is the star of the movie. I liked Bajrangi Bhaijaan and yes I have become a bit more of a Salman fan now.

Sunday, July 12, 2015

Baahubali - The epic larger than life movie you need to watch

(Firstly, have to thank my friends Pranita Mithbaonkar and Bhavesh Sharma for motivating me to watch this movie. If it wasn't for them I would have missed it and this review wouldn't have happened.)

S. S. Rajamouli hats-off.
If you don't follow Telugu cinema then you will not know about S. S. Rajamouli. I haven't seen any of his movies but the first movie of his that I heard about was Magadheera and the next movie which made him more prominent (in Bollywood) was Eega (better known as Makkhi in Hindi). There have only been 2 dubbed movies that I have watched in theatres and this one (Baahubali) has been the most expensive of the two for me.
Getting back to Baahubali, the scale at which this movie has been made is just unbelievable for an Indian movie. The set pieces, the locations, the characterization, the action were all just brilliant. You have to watch it to believe how Indian cinema has come a long way in churning out movies that want to compete with Hollywood. Enthiran (Robot) and Ra. One had set some highs in terms of the CGI being used in movies, but this movie has set the bar higher. And only someone from the south could have taken the risk of making such a movie.
The 1st half of the 1st half was ok (a few good stunts) but towards the end of 1st half is where the movie picks up pace. The 2nd half is where the most CGI has been used. It's a two part movie and like most movies which are made in parts, this too has something in the end that will leave you thinking and definitely buy tickets for the next part. It will be a lie to say that this movie is not inspired by other period dramas (movies and tv shows).
The risk has paid off. The last 45 minutes of the movie are worth spending the money on. One thing you will notice is that everyone who has worked on the movie have really worked for making it a success. The actors, and the director have done a brilliant job. Go watch it and don't miss it for anything.

Minions - Cute, fun, yellow little capsule kind of things

Minions is not as bad as everyone is saying it is. If you have kids, take them to watch this. Trust me they'll love (and the kid inside you too). But I advice you, it's a bit UA certified material, (not that the kids aren't subjected to worse things in real life but still). So if you loved Despicable Me then you must watch this origin / prequel / spin-off story and take your kids too but with a bit of responsibility.
The story has bits and pieces taken from other movies, so no surprises there. The dialogues are fun but again a lot has been inspired by other movies. But as a whole the movie is hilarious for most part. I know why the critics gave it low ratings but that doesn't mean the movie is bad. Featuring voices from Pierre Coffin to Sandra Bullock to Jon Hamm to even Michael Keaton, and others, the movie will definitely tickle your funny bone. But it will only be the kids who'll have a good laugh.