The Killers – Movie Review


Interesting title… why? well cause it honestly doesn’t really depict what you think the film will turn out to be, but in the end, it to me felt almost like a title written in jest. The movie is about a whirlwind romance, where Katherine Heigel of Grey’s Anatomy fame (who I think quit television to come to act in rom-coms, which in retrospect must be earning her loaadz of money) meets the man of her dreams, Ashton Kutcher while vacationing with her parents in Nice, France.

Ashton Kutcher right from the beginning is seen as the quintessential spy – fast red sports car, perfectly sculpted body, sharp suit with  scuba diving skills useful in climbing aboard a ship and placing a bomb underneath a chopper .. you get the drift. Somehow I wasn’t very convinced of it… maybe because he isn’t a Spy-Spy but turns out to be a contract killer, which you find out fairly quickly. Somehow the whirlwhind romance, of meeting a girl in the same hotel, falling in love overnight and suddenly refusing to do your job, and getting ‘out of the game’ seemed to have taken less then the first ten minutes of the film. Edited well, but somehow I think it lost the essence of what it was… there wasn’t a spark that you saw, the love that you believed happened that fast… it seemed “scripted”…

Anyway that aside, you are taken into their sub-urban life when suddenly one day Kutcher is contacted by his ex-boss and all hell breaks loose! Suddenly everyone wants to kill him… in all this Katherine Heigel, his wife acts suprised, bemused, uses a gun, crashes into another car and is all – ‘I’m too normal, not exciting, humdrum life, too close to my parents” kind of person. The randomness of those who attack them is funny and at the end of it, the movie does have a lot of humour and fun moments… it won’t feel like anything new or something you haven’t seen happen before in a rom-com (think: whole nine yards) but it still worth a watch on your comp… I won’t recommend watching it in theatres, but yes, for those who love chick-flicks and like seeing it to numb your mind and just chill… this is a fun flick… plus who doesn’t mind looking at the cuteness that is Kutcher, Heigel – well sometimes I think she was better as Izzy

…. overall a good “girl-type” watch 🙂

Road, Movie

It’s amazing what a promo can do… it can make you think that what you will watch will be amazing… it can make you perceive the excitement involved, it may make you consider watching what the promo has to offer. One such promo is for Dev Benegal’s latest “Film Festival” churn out… Road, Movie.

It’s amazing what a promo can do… it can make you think that what you will watch will be amazing… it can make you perceive the excitement involved, it may make you consider watching what the promo has to offer. One such promo is for Road, Movie.

The highly anticipated movie, with the sar jo tera chakraye soundtrack according to the promo, was fast paced, with subtle humour and had a sense of visual alacrity and aesthetics not commonly seen in today’s cinema. If one were to regard this as a “Festival Film,” with festival implying catering to the film festival audiences, yes the film has its moments. But if you were to put this in the “Bollywood envelope” it fails miserably.

It does have it few moments, but it seems more for the Festival fraternity especially in a scene where you see the kid (Faisal) giving the customer (Abhay Deol) tea and saying, “tujhe kya lagam yeh starbucks hai?” (Did you think it was going to be Starbucks?) This dialogue in a film, where the country hasn’t even seen Starbucks, a term only the jet-setters or travelling community would know, does not make sense to the average Joe. The other more insane dialogue, which you think could have probably come from a Bingo commercial is the tel dialogue where Abhay offers the local water-lord tel and says that would make him a ‘real man’.

The film doesn’t live up to the promo. It seemed as if the promo’s intention was to entice. With its colours, a fantastic rendition of an old song, interspersed with the best moments of the film, it truly did its job, of bringing people into the theatre. But that’s where it ended. It could however not keep them in their seat, which is where the director truly disappointed.
One would think, that if given more time, the director could have probably managed a screenplay wherein which the story could have been shaped better along with characters having a hierarchy instead of all being middlemen, and no one clear character emerging as the archetypal hero or villain. Even if you keep aside the hierarchical nature of cinema, and think of the director of doing something new, the fact of the story not feeling complete cannot be ignored.

The movie is not only slow, but its visuals after a while, especially those of the road seem monotonous and almost forced. There is a charm to aesthetics, but it only remains if it is used in modest quantities. To simply put it, I would have rather left this movie on the road, then called it a movie in a hall. The only saving grace, its 95 minutes and in the end, you can hear the song played in the promos before leaving the theatre.

Interesting fact: Faisal has previously worked in a final film made by four students of MCRC, Jamia Millia Islamia titled ‘Boot Polish’. Dev Benegal was the adviser at the time the film’s proposals were being discussed by the students who directed it.

Delhi 6

This is not a movie review, just a few things I thought of when I saw the movie.

  1. Yeh dilli hai mere yaar, Bas ishq mohabbat pyaar….Iske baye taraf bhi dil hai …Iske daye taraf bhi dil hai… the songs were remarkable.
  2. Extraordinarily talented  ensemble cast- Abhishek Bachchan, Sonam Kapoor, Waheeda Rahman , Rishi Kapoor Om Puri, Atul Kulkarni & Divya Dutta
  3. Movie is about the People & Place, not Plot or Story.
  4. Loved the dance-song-routine on the rooftop – Ghenda phool. Abhishek was at his hip-hop best.
  5. Longest ever Motorola Advertisement. Even when he is having an out-of-body experience & meets Amitabh in heaven, he is thinking about his Moto-Rocker.
  6. Chandini-Chowk ka khana, jalebi , parantha…
  7. Surfing channels was an interesting take on today’s India- were we have going to the moon & invisible kala Bandar both as breaking news on the same day.
  8. Sonam kapoor, is beautiful, should have been given more air time and trendier clothes. She does do the college thing of changing in the metro station’s loo but when she goes for the Indian Idol audition finally, she is wearing a salwar-kamiz.  Not that she was looking bad, but just a thought.
  9. It’s no RDB but it’s not bad, a one-time watch for sure.
  10. Love Delhi.

Dev D review

Dev D

Dev D is the latest incarnation of the epic Devdas by Saratchandra Chattopadhyay. The idea of the movie might be from the book but the implementation is anything but.

My first thought on Dev D – What a weird name for a movie ! What an eccentric song (emotional attyachaar) ! What a bizarre promo ! And finally what a strange but totally entertaining movie !

Dev (Abhay Deol) is the son of a rich industrialist from Punjab who is packed off to London for higher studies. Paro (Mahi) is the daughter of a manager in Dev’s father’s factory and is a good friend of Dev. The movie begins with a quick characterization of the hot and fiery Paro and the spoilt brat that Dev is.

The conversations between Dev and Paro and Dev and his dad, who he liked to call by his name ( Sattu) are absolutely hilarious.

A refreshing change from the rest of the bollywood adaptations of the novel, Dev D narrates the same story in REAL situations. The screenplay is smooth, no lecture bazzi happening and no long-drunk-falling apart-dialogues.

Anurag Kashyap takes the basic structure of Sarat Chandra Chatterjee’s original story, but updates it to today’s time and issues, making the characters’ actions and motivations something that a lot of the viewers can relate to.

I loved the fact that names of the characters just fall into place, amazingly imaginative. The minute ‘Chunni’ introduces himself, one can’t help but smile. Wearing his goggles to see who is calling when the phone rings was an LOL moment for sure.

The songs felt like, what-the-hell-is-happening, but in a couple of seconds you are drawn into it and you come out of the hall humming ‘em. Contradictions-Confusion-Craziness all-in-all interesting.

Times of India gave the movie 5 stars, saying that Dev D is indeed a coming-of-age film. I agree.

Unlike the last couple of movies I’ve seen recently, this one keeps the viewer engaged. It doesn’t bore you with song and dance routines, or thinks that the audience is dumb or assumes that logical reasoning is outside the scope of the viewers mental ability. CC2C, Gajni & RNBDJ may have been blockbusters, but this one deserves the awards.

Shekhar @ Stalefresh says it was a bold & well thought of movie; most my friends are of the same opinion. But I’m sure this is the opinion of a certain segment of people. If this was a report I was working on I’d say – ‘Teens & Young Adults, living in urban areas, adventurous and outgoing are the key segments’. Some movies are not made to please everyone, but to shock a few.

My verdict – Thums up  (With vodka please 😉

Review: President is coming

The President Is Coming – 8 Hands , 2 Birds, 1 Bush

President is Coming

THE PRESIDENT IS COMING follows the likes of Khosla ka Ghosla, Bheja Fry and many other films of their ilk? It does seem like a script of a play and also flow the same way; I’d say that it is at least making an attempt in that direction. Low Budget, mainly shot in one room, outstanding cast, witty script & totally entertaining.

The Plot: George W. Bush, President of the United States is visiting India & in addition to the many diplomatic and political things on the agenda, he has thought of a rather unique event- a meeting with one of the young faces responsible for shaping “The New India”. A PR firm has thus been hired to shortlist an Indian below 30 years of age to shake the President’s hand. In a contest inspired by Survivor & Big Brother, 6 contestants are to fight it out in a talent contest to be the ONE to shake hands with the most powerful man in the World.

An out-n-out comedy, the movie is directed by the debutante Kunal Roy Kapoor and carries a star cast ranging from Konkona Sen Sharma, Shernaz Patel, Ira Dubey, Vivek Gomber, Satchit Puranik, Namit Das, Anand Tiwari to Shivani Tanksale. ‘President Is Coming’ is laced with an intelligent script that pours light on the social issues like male chauvinism, gay relations, homosexuality and brain drain and still makes you LOL.

Konkona Sen Sharma plays a novelist, who thinks that she is an ideal contestant because she is a booker prize winner (being manipulative also help). There are other contestants, which include a software engineer from Bangalore, IIMA pass out social activist, Gujju Stock broker, a Page 3 socialite with an MMS scandal history and an American-born-confused-desi accent trainer from Gurgaon. Watch the movie to know who actually shook hands with Bush!

The film has been made in English, hence catering to a niche segment. The publicity is mainly depended on Word of Mouth (I’m doing my bit). I enjoyed the humor, the mud sling, and the humor on region, profession, social status, Language, marital status & obviously G.W Bush J.

My verdict: its sarcastic humor will appeal to only a select section of the audience; the masala-glossy-yashraj-types may find it a bit drab.

Review: Ghajini

GHAJINI

Revenge is what I want to take for the 3.5 hrs of complete torture I had to go through while watching Ghajini.

For once the problem was not with the script. The idea and the story were good; it had (supposedly) a great cast with Aamir in the lead. The movie had a big budget and two good looking women … So, what went wrong?

Firstly, it was way too long. I mean three & a half hours…

Secondly, I wanna understand – Why those songs were shoved in the middle. Have a music album or background music or something else!!!

Then there was the new comer so to speak (She has done a version of the same movie in the south and dubbed for another version so this was her third attempt at the same thing). Don’t wanna comment about her acting skills, but don’t you thing she moved way too much. I mean can’t a person be normal.

Did I mention the bakwas songs? Well! They are worth mentioning again. The songs standalone are good no doubt. AR Rehman is still awesome. It is just that they were not required & made the movie extra long. Aamir’s six-pack … Oh Sorry! eight-pack did not need so much airtime. “We get it Aamir you worked your assoff to beat SRK, but we really don’t care”. The songs were just a ‘look-at-me-I-am –aamir-the- muscle-uncle’ the girls just came & went with a blink of an eye.

Lastly, I have to mention Jia Khan’s Wanna-be-Dr-activist-confused-idiot Item number at college annual day. So-out-a-place.

Ghajini movie is a must watch for an Aamir Khan Fan cause he’s all you’ll get to see.

Let me end by saying that this movie is nothing like the movie “Memento”. Do watch Momento so that at least you enjoy the genius behind the real script/movie.

Review of Fashion … and … when will it finish

So … I just finished seeing the movie Fashion and I have only one thing to say to Madhur Bhandarkar … that was one loooonnnggg movie dude ! Oh and I also think it was a very boring movie.

I mean I get the idea of realistic cinema and and all that and I’d probably have been fine if this movie had gotten over in about 1-1/2 hours instead of the 2-1/2 hours it took, but the whole look and concept of Fashion just didn’t work for me.

The movie is about a small town girl who comes to the big city to become a model. Her struggling days, her success, the arrogance and her downfall have all been depicted convincingly. Priyanka’s role is pretty good and her acting commendable, and that is just about the only thing that I liked about the movie.

I just feel that the movie took a long time in getting the message across and that made it slow and almost tortuous. I don’t remember seeing a movie, in the recent past, which I wish would have ended sooner.

Another thing which doesn’t work for me is that Madhur’s movies for some reason look like they’ve all been made on second hand reels which he found while lurking in the back alleys of the entertainment industry.

And no by second hand reels, I don’t mean that the concept is old. Kudos to Madhur for daring to make a film which actually shows the reality of the industry like it is. But, he could have atleast used better lighting ! Or a better camera-man !

Well, I agree that I don’t understand the movie biz very well and how expensive it is to make movies … but I really wish I hadn’t paid so much money to see this movie.

Oh, btw, Madhur … taking a dig at real life and packaging it in a movie is not realistic cinema. Show us something we haven’t seen. I mean we’ve all seen the gay fashion designers and their socialite trophy wives and the drug addict models … ‘Nuff said !

Dostana Review … and … Apple product placement

I saw Dostana last Saturday and kinda liked the movie. I mean I have no idea that John Abraham had so many fans in Bangalore. I mean fans of the male kind ! The kind who would whistle looking at John coming out of the Miami Ocean in his Undies … a ‘La Ursula Andress. Well, not really, but you get the drift !

Anyway, the movie was fun and mostly harmless clean comedy. I know some people were disappointed with the movie because … you know … they actually thought that Abhishek Bachhan and John Abraham would be playing a couple in the movie !

So, anyway the movie is about two random guys who are looking for a place to stay in Miami and end up being interested in the same apartment. The hitch is that the apartment is only for girls and so the duo decide to act as a couple and the rest, as they say, is history 🙂 Well, not really, but you know how these things go … I’m not supposed to spoil the fun and all that jazz.

All in all, I’d say its a nice and fun movie … Oh wait .. I already said that. Well, go watch the movie then.

The other thing that I wanted to talk about is product placement in movies. Specifically, Apple product placement. And when does it really start to get irritating.

I mean, I’m all for the producers making an extra buck by making the actors pose with nice and sexy gadgets, but there definitely has to be a limit to this. Or if there isn’t … a limit should be set soon … like now !

The makers of Dostana must have really got a nice bundle from Apple for promoting Macbooks, iPods, and iPhones in the movie. The movie features all those gadgets in multiple scenes and in places where they were absoltely avoidable. In fact, Karan Johar went a step ahead and started with promoting Apple products outside the movie too by gifting John a (new shiny white) Macbook on a chat show he was hosting for, of course, promoting the movie.

The Boy Who Left Home to find out about the Shiver

The Boy Who Left Home to find out about the Shiver

How many times have you watched FRIENDS, Star Trek, DDLJ or your wedding video. Ever wondered why there are these things that we go back to again and again. The logical reason is that either they are entertaining every time you watch them OR there are some memories associated with them that you RE-LIVE each and every time you watch those videos.

Well, I have one of those awesome memories about watching “The Boy Who Left Home To Find Out About The Shivers”. Based on a not-so-well-known tale from the Brothers Grimm, this is the tale of a boy who has never known fear. Every year, from the time I was 8 till 11, when my cousins and I would gang up together during summer holidays at my grandparents’ house, this was our number one choice to watch. It was pretty spooky & the castle scenes scared the heck out of me when I was little, but were a lot of fun.

Recently I watched the video again and it was fun to look back at what I found scary then ;).

This is one childhood memory of mine I will always cherish.