After a six week hiatus & figuring out why I have more <randomstringofletters>@outlook.com blog followers than Donald Trump has typos in his tweets I am back!
I may have been slacking with writing reviews but rest assured I was on the top of my game watching movies! Let me start with the best:
Raazi, a beautiful play on word, signifying a young girls’ willingness to marry an unknown man, join an unknown family, call a rival country her new ‘home’ and her willingness to put all on the line to become a spy for her motherland. A deep bow of respect for real life Sehmat whose heart beat for more than just her own wellbeing.
Alia Bhatt is putting nepotism claims to rest with yet another talent-filled portrayal of the protagonist. What a nice contrast to pelvic thrusting, half-clad, dunked in a pot of make up heroins! Mind you, this wasn’t an easy character to play. It was equal parts grief and determination, confidence and sub-ordinance, hope and despair, courage and fear. Yet she brought each of these to life without flinching an eye.
Vicky Kaushal was a true surprise. How handsomely he slipped into a Pakistani army man’s, a son’s, a brother’s and a husband’s character. Ouuff! It’s not the first time I am asking and also not the last: “Where do they make men like these anymore??” Accomplished yet humble, not sappily romantic yet loving and caring in ways that don’t need words…
The direction was powerful, subtle and had just the perfect amount of patriotism, pride and clever.
Bonus: If Dilbaro doesn’t get you crying at “Babul ki Duayein Leti Ja” levels go get your eyes or your heart checked! (10/10)
Same story. I lost the draft that I wrote on the plane but in this case it was actually regretful. I watched this movie with very little expectations knowing that Hrithik Roshan mostly acts like a five year old in the body of a very – umm, handsome – adult. But buckle your seats because Hritik Roshan takes you on a surprising ride with his outstanding acting in Kaabil. Even more so because acting to be blind is likely more difficult when you can actually see.
Sanjay Gupta crafted very likable characters for Hrithik and Yami. They were underdogs to begin with but there was an ease in their personalities that instantly drew me to them. As the story unfolds they meet with an evil fate and their world turns upside down. It becomes a story of revenge in absence of justice by law.
Some of the dialogues stuck with me as they were unexpected and quite thoughtful, delivered flawlessly by our hotter-than-legally-allowed protagonist and a very skilled Ronit Roy, who is one of the finest underrated actors Bollywood has.
Yami, too, fit her role of a delicate girl full of grace and positivity well. She looked particularly gorgeous as a simple bride.
Glad to see Indian cinema bringing awareness to differently abled people even if in ways that are uniquely Bollywood. (8/10)
I know I am massively late reviewing this one. It’s been two weeks since its release. I watched this one just a few days after it came out with my family and wrote the review on my plane ride back to California. However, I lost the darn draft, which is actually far less consequential than losing one’s brain like what seems to be happening to King Khan these days. The last movie of his I could tolerate – besides Dear Zindagi in which he had a cameo role – probably saw the light of day in 2006. Movie after movie after movie he is cheating his massive fan following out of their entertainment budgets.
I saw Raees at home in a comfy home theatre, with incredible sound and the perfect back lighting so I can’t even blame the crowds and tiring experience of standing in a line to get into the theatre for the bad taste this movie left in my mouth. Other than Nawazuddin Siddiqui’s stellar acting – as expected – Raees has absolutely nothing to offer. I slept through at least a third of it and, no, I was not jet-lagged when I saw it. Apparently, I was not the only one. My sister, who went to a theatre to see this (!) and normally is never in agreement with my tastes also slept through it.
Mahira Khan, who acted extraordinarily well in Pakistani TV serials was just a controversy stirrer for the publicity of this movie. No role, no sense, no acting.
SRK, you seem to be a smart guy with LOTS of money. Maybe put it to use somewhere else? (2/10)
Sigh! When will actors become actors and adapt to the characters they are supposed to play instead of producers and directors catering the entire movie to the “star” they are casting? Yet another movie that was made for Amitabh Bachchan (remember Shamitabh?) instead of focusing on a strong plot and characters to then fit the appropriate actors to play them. The entire movie felt a bit forced and I left the theatre scratching my head and wondering if AB was a good or a bad guy. Unfortunate waste of great actors like Amitabh Bachchan and Farhan Akhtar. (5/10)
Take Kramer from Seinfeld, put him through a cuteyfication machine and on the other end it will spit out Johnny from Bombay Velvet. I have a feeling Anurag Kashyap sat down each evening with a glass of whiskey, and then two and then three because the story he piecemealed got progressively worse. Hat tip to Ranbir Kapoor for getting really bad movies but acting out his characters so well. Anushka and Raveena’s dresses and make-up are to drool for. If I could flick a wand we’d all be in the 50s now wearing breathtaking dresses and glamorous make-up and hair. (3/10)
You will likely be more familiar with the popular songs of this movie than the movie itself. A one time watch carrying an important social message about corruption and how change has to happen from the bottom. Easier said than done. Akshay Kumar, as usual, delivers a solid performance. Shruti Hassan on the other hand needs to learn how to act and get some better roles for herself. (6/10)
Vishal Bhardwaj you have done the undoable. Not sure about Shakespeare but you have made a lot of dead people turn in their graves with your gory and violent “at this point in my career I can do what the heck I want” movie. God knows (pun intended) why so many characters, including the two that were supposed to look like Salman Khan, looked like Jesus. Awkward use of poetry and songs. The only thing this movie has going is powerhouse acting by the leads. (3/10)