Jul 31 2015

Drishyam- Movie Review


Drishyam excels in many ways such as performances, cinematography and styling and will keep you gripped during most parts, giving special credits to Ajay Devgn and Tabu but falls short of a tighter screenplay that could have made the movie more thrilling.

Rating– 3/5


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Oct 2 2014

Haider- Movie Review


haider-posterYou know its a Vishal Bhardwaj film when you walk out of the theatre with a heavy heart. Haider is not your typical Bollywood flick and Shahid Kapoor is far from being the ‘Chocolate Boy’ in this powerful film. Here’s my review.

Plot in Short– Inspired by Shakespeare’s Hamlet, Haider, the film tells the story of Haider (Shahid Kapoor), a poet who returns to his home after several years only to find that his father is missing, his house is burnt and his mother is having an affair with his uncle. Something’s fishy and Haider does not plan to let it be.

The Good– The adaptation has been brilliantly executed. To have Kashmir as the backdrop of the film only made it more interesting. Vishal Bhardwaj has played his cards well and made a masterpiece of a film. Superb screenplay written by him along with Basharrat Peer. I actually made an effort to read the credits online once I got home because making such a powerful film like this, rich in content is not common. Each character has been given life, making the viewer completely engrossed in watching the film from beginning to end no matter how long it is. The cinematographer Pankaj Kumar has captured beautiful moments on camera, making Kashmir look splendid in its most raw form. The most amazing part about Haider is the stunning performances by each and every actor. Award winning performances especially by Tabu, Kay Kay Menon and Shahid Kapoor. Its films like these and a director like Vishal Bhardwaj that bring out the best in these actors. I can easily say that this is Shahid Kapoor’s and Shraddha Kapoor’s best film yet. The music and background score which is intense too goes very well with the theme of the film. The song ‘Bismil’ has been choreographed very well and is well composed. I also really really liked the song ‘Aao na’. I couldn’t imagine anyone but Vishal Dadlani singing it!

The Not-so-good–  There’s not much I didn’t like in this movie apart from the fact that it is slightly long and a bit disconnected in a few parts but I guess that’s the beauty of it.

Verdict– Get blown! Haider must be watched for its performances, direction, story, music, Kashmir, cinematography, background score and almost everything else. I loved it!

Rating– 4.5/5

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Jan 10 2014

Dedh Ishqiya- Movie Review


dedh-ishqiya-movie-posterDedh Ishqiya is not just about Madhuri Dixit if that’s your reason to go watch it. It’s a multi-starrer film that’s quite an entertainment package! Here’s more on what makes Dedh Ishqiya a must watch movie this January!

Begum Para (Madhuri Dixit Nene) from Mahmudabad lost her Nawab husband and is looking to get married again. In order to find the perfect partner, she hosts Nawabs from various places to recite poetry and win her over. Khalujaan (Naseeruddin Shah) who is actually a thief poses as the Nawab of Chandpur in order to win her over and in turn falls in love with her. His partner in crime Babban (Arshad Warsi) falls in love with Begum’s friend and confidante Muniya (Huma Qureshi) who is planning to have Begum Para kidnapped. Will love conquer all?

So Abhishek Chaubey has directed Dedh Ishqiya which is the second film in the Ishqiya franchise. Darab Farooqui, the writer has paid special attention to the story this time. I wouldn’t want to compare it to Ishqiya but this one is more likeable. There’s free flowing Urdu, poetry, gorgeous clothes worn by both Madhuri and Huma, beautiful havelis they’ve shot at and in general just more classy. Ishqiya had this rustic, raw feel to it which was nice too but I liked this better. The screenplay is smooth and well written. There’s a certain charm in the humour and you would be entertained throughout. Mr. Chaubey knows his craft and does full justice to his characters in the film.

The cinematography isn’t breathtaking but it makes the film look rich and beautiful.

The music by Vishal Bhardwaj is alright. I thought the choreography of the songs is superb especially Madhuri’s solo number choreographed by Pandit Birju Maharaj. There aren’t any songs I specifically liked otherwise but they go well with the theme of the film.

Madhuri Dixit Nene at her age looks fantastic! She’s beauty inside out and is an effortless actor. There’s a huge amount of grace in her that comes across in her performance too. Naseeruddin Shah is a brilliant actor as we all know and in Dedh Ishqiya he really does look and acts like a Nawab. The way he speaks Urdu, well, not many can speak with such flair. There’s an unsaid chemistry between both Madhuri and Naseeruddin and that has a lot to do with their acting skills. Arshad Warsi deserves to do more movies simply because he is talented and it shows on screen. Huma Qureshi has barely acted in a few films but makes an impact with her confidence and strong screen presence. Vijay Raaz as Jaan Mohammad is a delight to watch.

I’d definitely recommend Dedh Ishqiya because it’s different, charming and entertaining at the same time. Also because watching Madhuri Dixit Nene on screen after so many years is a treat!

Rating– 3.5/5

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Apr 19 2013

Ek Thi Daayan- Movie Review


Ek thi daayan posterHorror movies are not everyone’s cup of tea; but for me they’re just another genre of entertainment. I hadn’t seen a single trailer of the film but knowing the cast made me want to watch it. Konkona Sen Sharma, Emraan Hashmi, Kalki Koechlin and Huma Qureshi are actors who wouldn’t work together otherwise and I just had to see what made them come together, especially for a horror film! Here’s my review.

Emraan Hashmi plays Bobo the magician who is in love with Huma Qureshi and has adopted a son with her. During one of his tricks, he gets hallucinations of his little kid sister who had died (when she was young) crying for help. He freaks out and meets his psychiatrist who hypnotizes him and takes him to his past life to find out what’s making Bobo see strange things. He goes back to when he was eleven years old and finds out that there was a ‘daayan’ who  pretty much messed things up back then for him. Now that he’s old enough and understands what happened back then, he understands that ‘Daayan ki saari shakti uski choti mein hi band rehti hai’ and that’s when he decides to end all the drama!

When you watch the film, you will realize that the story in the film is different as compared to other horror films. There are no tantriks or priests to make the ghost go away. So yes, the story works to a large extent except for the ending which is really stupid. The last twenty minutes were so bad that it would make you wonder if there was a separate writer just for writing such a dumb climax. The director Kannan Iyer has done a decent job otherwise as he keeps the pace going and doesn’t bore you. Cinematographer Saurabh Goswami has avoided the typical creepy angles like the one RGV loves and thankfully that works in the favour of this film. The lighting is lovely. The good thing is that the background score is not the only reason for you being scared in the film. You wont be that scared also, don’t worry!

Coming to the performances… Emraan Hashmi has acted better in the past. In Ek Thi Daayan, he’s ok and looks dull and worn out in most scenes. A little more effort could’ve helped him perform better. Huma Qureshi was a surprise package! She not only looks good in the film but also acts well. She’s convincing throughout. Konkona Sen Sharma has always acted well and there’s no doubt that in this film too, she’s done a great job! Kalki Koechlin barely has anything to do. She’s so-so. The child actors acted decently well.

The music by Vishal Bhardwaj doesn’t do much. In fact, the songs in the film slow down the pace a bit.

Ek Thi Daayan is not that good and not that bad. Just about ok. Watch it for Konkana Sen Sharma, Huma Qureshi and a slightly different horror concept.

Rating– 2.5/5


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Jan 11 2013

Matru Ki Bijlee Ka Mandola- Movie Review


matru-ki-bijlee-ka-mandola posterWhat a strange movie title! Is the movie as strange or stranger? You’re just about to find out.

So, Matru (Imran Khan) stays in a village called Mandola where he works as a driver for a rich industrialist called Harry Mandola (Pankaj Kapur) who wants to demolish the farmers’ crops and make money by building malls, hotels, buildings, etc. Chaudhari Devi (Shabana Azmi) is a corrupt politician who wants her son Baadal (Arya Babbar) to Mandola’s beautiful daughter Bijlee (Anushka Sharma). Then of course, there are adventures and misadventures in this comedy drama.

Vishal Bhardwaj’s films are always a little heavy and dark. MKBKM is slightly different with the kind of humour there is in it though. It’s boring in parts and very funny in some. The village setting is rustic and real along with the styling of all the characters. Each one is unique in their own way including Gulabo (Gulabi Bhains). Good camera work and interesting story telling style.

Coming to the performances… Imran Khan was ok. He didn’t have that much to do in the film. Anushka Sharma was good. Pankaj Kapur and Shabana Azmi were the stars of the film. Arya Babbar played the character very well and was fun to watch.

The music by Vishal Bhardwaj is different but not that great. Luckily there were just 2 or 3 songs in the movie.

Matru Ki Bijlee Ka Mandola is a crack film that might be a little difficult to digest but the after -taste is not that bad. So-so.

Rating– 2.5/5

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Feb 18 2011

7 Khoon Maaf- Movie Review


Darrrrrling! I just had to watch this movie and I’m so glad I did! Some of you might wonder why and some of you just think I like every movie that comes out! Ummm…the latter ones, you just don’t know me at all!

So the movie is based on a novel called Susanna’s Seven Husbands by Ruskin Bond. Priyanka Chopra, the woman in question marries and then kills 7 men (actually 6) due to different reasons.

In one word, to me it was interesting. Movies like this are not made often. Vishal Bhardwaj has taken up a great concept and tried his level best to make something different and intriguing. I like movies that make you think after they’re over. This one did that for me. Questions like ‘Why didn’t she just divorce them instead of kill?’, ‘How did she get away with all the murders?’, ‘The men, or even her didn’t have families?’ etc.  The climax of the film also left many questions unanswered in my head. For me, that’s a win!

Ok coming to the other things. Priyanka Chopra looks lovely in the first half of the film but who the hell did her make up in the second half?! She looks bad and for the first time I think she looks really ugly! Her make-up artist screwed up big time!  I also thought she didn’t have much acting to do. The male actors hardly had a role since it was about Susanna but I think they all contributed well to all the stories in the movie. The music is superb! I love all the tracks. I also really liked the way they did up the main house. Very good art direction!

Yes, it does have its shortcomings and it’s not a movie everyone can handle, but 7 Khoon Maaf was good according to me and I enjoyed the experience.

Rating– 3/5

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