Browsing All Posts filed under »Cinema: Hindi«

Shakespeare (plus Bollywood) Wallah

March 28, 2015

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Reflections on Shashi Kapoor, recipient of the Dadasaheb Phalke award for 2014. I’m not getting into the whole “does he deserve it?” debate, but the news about the Phalke filled me with a vague kind of happiness. There’s always been something wholesome, something nice about Shashi Kapoor. You probably remember the Friends episode that was […]

“NH10.”… An unsatisfying thriller with too much on its plate

March 14, 2015

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Spoilers ahead… When a smart, talented filmmaker takes on genre material, there’s often the tendency to inflate it, to make it mean something – and sometimes the material just buckles under this baggage. The visceral thrills, the purity, of the genre get blunted by the efforts to make things “classy.” Something like this happened when […]

Retracing a father’s footsteps

March 14, 2015

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Dissuaded by his father from joining the family shoe-trading business, Atul Sabharwal turned filmmaker. Now, in a documentary titled ‘In Their Shoes’, he looks at the shoe trade in Agra – how it began, and what it is today. After Aurangzeb, a big, fat mainstream movie for Yash Raj studios, what made you decide on […]

“Coffee Bloom”… A well-acted drama about how the past never leaves us

March 7, 2015

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Spoilers ahead… Dev Anand (Arjun Mathur) is a coffee expert in Bangalore, but his heart is probably in the Himalayas – he wants to get away from it all, become a sanyasi. He keeps listening to spiritual discourses on his earphones, and his only friend appears to be Sondha (the charming Ishwari Bose-Bhattacharya), a cheerful […]

“Dum Laga Ke Haisha”… An enchanting rom-com with a surprisingly dysfunctional core

March 2, 2015

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Spoilers ahead… Sharat Katariya likes to take familiar stories and set them in places you don’t expect. In his first feature, 10ml Love, he relocated A Midsummer Night’s Dream to modern-day Mumbai. In Dum Laga Ke Haisha, he transports the rom-com – a traditionally urbane genre – to Haridwar of the 1990s. The era is […]

“Ab Tak Chhappan 2.”… A needless sequel that feels like a relic from another age

February 27, 2015

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Spoilers ahead… News is just out that they’re planning a sequel to Blade Runner, which was released in 1982. So as belated follow-ups go, Ab Tak Chhappan 2 isn’t all that belated. Still, the decision to add another chapter to Shimit Amin’s 2004 film (this one is directed by Aejaz Gulab) is a curious one. […]

“Badlapur”… A stunning thriller about PTSD

February 27, 2015

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Spoilers ahead… The tag line for Sriram Raghavan’s new film Badlapur is “Don’t Miss The Beginning,” and we wonder, first, what’s so missable about it. Everything’s so… ordinary. We’re on this side of a street in Pune. At the other end, there’s a bank. There are a few passers-by. There’s the noise of traffic and […]

“Shamitabh”… Mostly good, madly inventive, and then there’s that ending

February 25, 2015

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Spoilers ahead… R Balki was put on earth for two reasons. One, to provide exciting projects for Ilayaraja and ensure that the maestro doesn’t languish in the south. Two, to provide exciting projects for Amitabh Bachchan and ensure that the superstar doesn’t languish in the shadow of his super-image. About the latter, first. When it […]

“MSG The Messenger of God”… You’re going to need God-given strength for this one

February 21, 2015

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Spoilers ahead… As I was stepping out of a screening of MSG: The Messenger of God – as opposed to, you know, MSG: Do You Really Need It In Your Kitchen? – a man who was in the audience came up and asked how I’d liked the movie. I’d have told him the truth, but […]

“Roy”… A very slow trudge to nowhere

February 20, 2015

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Spoilers ahead… If you wandered into a multiplex and wanted to locate the screen on which Roy is playing, just head towards the discreet coughing. That would be the audience, after two-and-a-half hours of incessant second-hand smoking. Kabir (Arjun Rampal), Roy (Ranbir Kapoor) and assorted supporting characters are rarely seen without a cigarette (or a […]

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