Back to the movies!!!

Saw Angels & Demons last Sunday. A movie at the theaters after a long hiatus ( >3 months). The movie in itself, turned out to be pretty average. Langdon and Ms.Vetra keep running frantically all around Rome while discussing intelligently about Bernini’s art and the other clues. That’s it for most of the movie. Going on common sense, such movies are supposed to have more action sequences or something visually appealing than the books they are adapted from. Surprisingly, the makers of this movie thought otherwise. A suspense thriller sans the action. Two positive points : One,AnD is way better than DaViC, but that isnt saying much,right? Two, Beautiful Rome and its architecture :) Anyways, I hope Tom Hanks will now go back to playing those delightful characters like we’ve seen him doing all these years.

But the big news is….its a treat for the movie buffs in the coming months! Lots of biggies lined up for India Release. Terminator Salvation, X-MEN Origins: Wolverine (actually both movies aren’t exactly setting the US box office on fire), Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs & Star Trek. I have almost zilch knowledge about the Star Trek series but the movie has got such great response (all time #88 in IMDB as of today & 95% on the tomatometer) I have to watch it after all. There’s also Up (Looks like The dudes at Pixar have got an Oscar Winner yet again ) and Tranformers 2 . Then,there’s the biggest of them all : Harry Potter & the Half Blood Prince . The movie has taken long in the making and it better be darn good. Phew, still quite a few movies left; but I’ll stop this here :P

Things don’t seem quite rosy on the Bollywood front what with the strike n all. Serves them both right: Producers, for giving us crappy movies most of the time and the multiplex owners for their exhorbitant prices :P. One movie which seems interesting is Vishal Bharadwaj’s Kaminey (the title sounds cool too :D)

Enjoy the pop-corn guys ;)

“Once Again I must ask too much of you,Harry…”

P.S: Morning show balcony ticket at Rex is just 60 bucks! Even on weekends!!!

The ‘Slumdog’ Debate

I had to stop my Kudremukha Travelogue Part 2 midway to write this post. I finally watched Slumdog Millionaire today, on the big screen.Most people have already seen the movie. So this is not a full-fledged review. And thank god I didn’t heed those numerous advices from people (Download it and watch it. Not worth watching in theatre. Its normal masala movie). But therein lies the movie’s strength. This movie is entertaining cinematic experience at its best. Yes, it is a masala entertainer.

‘Tu Mere Saath Daance Karegi Na…’

My idea of judging how great a movie is simple – images from the movies still come to your mind , you are humming the songs from the movie & you think about the characters from the movie long after you left the movie hall. There are such sequences galore in this movie. All the actors do their job very well – nice chemistry between the lead pair, the kid Jamal, a wicked Anil Kapoor’s superlative performance etc.And Rahman’s background score pitches in with perfect timing, everytime. All the little song sequences in the movie are highly entertaining.(Particularly O Saaya in the opening minutes, which sets the tone for the rest of the movie) And the movie as a whole is,to quote a cliche, a visual treat. Overall, loved it. All I can say is either be an intelligent movie goer and know what to expect from the movie and enjoy it or keep cribbing how you’ve know idea how this ‘average masala’ movie is garnering awards in bucketfuls all round the world.

‘Shut up! The Man With The Colt 45 says shut up!’

Now to the big debate. The ‘award worthiness’ of the movie and protests from obscure organizations about Indians being called slumdogs in the movie.By this time, it should be amply evident what kind of Indian movies win recognition in the West – the other side of the world where the Oscars are distributed. A peek into the past to look for the Indian movies that won oscar nominations will make the picture clear- Lagaan,Salaam Bombay,Mother India. My thinking is they see it as artistic cinema – this depiction of the underbelly of rural & slum-ridden India in all its pathos. For instance,even the first glimpse of Taj Mahal in the movie is shown with some filthy water body in the foreground (Or is it the Yamuna???). And when the movie has entertainment value with colorful Bollywood song-and-dance thrown in, its icing on the cake.And to extend this observation to another medium, consider another recent award-winning piece – The White Tiger by Aravind Adiga. Every sentence in the Man-Booker prize winning literary work drips with not-so-subtle hints about the malodorousness prevalent in the Indian society,veering towards plain yuckiness regularly in its 300-page story. Many people have the same opinion as Slumdog about this book too. The message should be clear by now.

Slumdog Millionaire is now a frontrunnner for the Oscars. So lets root for it. I sure hope Rahman wins an Oscar (yeah yeah, I know he’s given much better movies in the past.Now stop whining :P)

‘It is written’

Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi – Movie Review

Making the most of holidays, I went to see RNBDJ first day morning show. First the sad part – the storyline which has been doing rounds on the internet is almost correct. So no need to repeat the story line . Here’s the review…

The movie starts out on a slow pace,introducing a simpleton SRK and his wife-by-accident, with bits of subtle humor thrown in. It picks pace once the other dashing,outrageously-over-the-top Punjabi Jat SRK enters(must say SRK looks old in this role too).For the first two hours movie goes on with a few funny & entertaining sequences, some good songs (a nice parody with special appearances from.. no prices for guessing :P) keeping the audience occupied. Then Mr.Director tells the characters in the movie there has to be some serious story also so that all kinds of audience are covered.(After all, this movie has been made to recover all the losses of Yash Raj productions in the last year or so :P). But there is only 45 minutes left of the movie.The characters now don’t know what they are upto and get totally confused about their morality, their common sense etc & consequently the director loses track of his characters and the screenplay goes for a toss for that important half-hour or so. When there is 15 minutes to the movie, the director tells the characters “All of you are good Indian people.So be so. No justification required for anything”. Finally everyone is good and the Rab Da Banaya hua Jodi live happily ever after…

Everyone knew it will be too much to expect Adi Chopra to revive the magic of DDLJ with this movie. Even Mohabbatein had some great sequences ( with SRK & the Big B) . But no magic to be seen here except for a couple of good sequences here and there(Esp check out the brilliant sequence just before the interval). Nothing much to remember the movie by. And even though I am an SRK fan, I can safely say this review is unbiased because the actor has done well to fit into the characters and play them as they are. But one sure misses the usual SRK with all his usual hamming,charisma & theatrics which we expect to see in this kind of a movie.Nothing special about the newcomer Anushka sharma.She just passes muse.

I will say go,watch the movie once and enjoy the good parts. The bad parts are not so bad,so they can be easily forgotten after the movie is over :)

2 movies in a day!!!

For a big time movie buff, this is pretty late but still…….The honor goes to Fashion & Quantum Of Solace. The other way round??? Nah.

As much as its difficult to digest, QoS sucked, if not big time. Fashion as expected, was passable & predictable. Ok watch. I just went because everyone was going(Yeah, that happens all the time.More on that in a coming-shortly post).There is so much of Priyanka Chopra in the movie I can safely say I have become allergic to her after watching the movie. Anyways,I wanna crib about QoS & I’ll precisely do that. I am not a 007 fan as such, but some or the other way I have ended up watching the last 5 Bond movies at the theatre. And wasn’t really impressed with any of them. I even found the highly acclaimed Casino Royale only watchable. Coming back to QoS, there isn’t much plot in the movie as much as there is chaotic action . Also all the action sequences had a sense of dejavu (been there,seen that you know) about them. And the movie is totally stripped off all the famous 007 elements – the theme music, the witty one-liners, the suaveness, the Bond-James-Bond line, the ‘ROMANCE’!!! I mean, I agree the few movies before Casino… had descended into formula & were kinda kitsch, but with this one they have yo-yo ed to the other extreme. Hope the people involved get smarter for Bond 23. Only one question – Mr.Bond, WHY SO SERIOUS??? (Hey this quote has made it to both my posts :P). And one request to the makers- Bring the lovely ladies back to the show!!!

So,what was I saying? Yeah yeah, 2 movies in a single day. 3 in a day? Some other time, sure.

P.S : Most reviewers have actually praised the action sequences in QoS and the movie has got good reviews overall. I know its difficult, but don’t get too biased by the review here.Go see it,at your own risk though ;)