Browsing All Posts filed under »Cinema«

Pretty pictures

October 22, 2016


On the great shallow pleasures of gawking at beautiful people on screen, and the problems when they pretend they’re otherwise. When the minute-and-a-half teaser for Karan Johar’s upcoming Ae Dil Hai Mushkil was released in August, I froze at the thirty-second mark, the point where Aishwarya Rai Bachchan, in a salmon-pink coat, turns to the […]

Analysis, critical!

October 8, 2016


Social media may not have killed the film critic, but it has definitely changed the business of film criticism. In a panel discussion at the Indywood Film Carnival, held in Hyderabad last week, I was asked about the impact of social media on critics. It wasn’t the first time I’ve been asked this question. It […]

Fact? Or rah-rah fiction?

October 6, 2016


The problem with the recently released biopic of Mahendra Singh Dhoni is the problem with many biopics of the famous: the flaws make way for fawning. MS Dhoni – The Untold Story is a terrifically entertaining sports saga, but is it a biopic, a “biographical picture”? On the evidence of dictionary definitions, it probably qualifies. […]

Movies, memories and everything in between

September 24, 2016


Watching old films on the big screen is a form of travelling through time. Why don’t we have revival theatres? The US has them. Among the coming attractions at the Texas Theatre in Dallas is a screening of The Fly, to commemorate its 30th anniversary. The point isn’t that the film can be seen on […]

Cinema, society, chicken, egg

July 6, 2016


We need to rigorously study the impact of cinema on society before blaming films for every shocking headline. At least for a while, the case that shocked Chennai played out like a Tamil movie. A dark-skinned boy (Ramkumar) from a small town set eyes on a fair-skinned, upper-class girl (Swathi). He fell in love. He […]

Broad Reflections #4: Is it really that short a route from Kodambakkam to Nungambakkam?

July 3, 2016


Following the grisly Swathi/Ramkumar case, just wanted to open a discussion about Tamil cinema’s depiction of stalking and the actions of this particular deranged individual. One part of me says that there are millions who watch these films and a mere handful who are inspired to do these things, so the problem lies not with the […]

Old is cold?

April 16, 2016


‘The Jungle Book’, like ‘The Revenant’, is a showcase for new technology that’s making it increasingly difficult to watch older films. Let’s begin with a quiz. You just have to name the film. It features an attack by a grizzly bear. The victim is a Caucasian man making a living in an unforgiving, inhospitable, bitterly […]

Coming soon, and not just to theatres

November 7, 2015


Baradwaj Rangan reports on a film market at the Mumbai Film Festival, which hopes to help directors like Vetri Maaran target the screens on your laptops and smartphones. On the second day of the Jio MAMI Mumbai Film Festival, the producer Guneet Monga (The Lunchbox, Gangs of Wasseypur, Shaitan) screened a two-minute trailer of her […]

I hate the idea that a critic is ‘reliable’…

October 31, 2015


Baradwaj Rangan catches up with Peter Bradshaw, The Guardian’s chief film critic, who was at the Mumbai Film Festival mentoring future critics.  Do you think reviews are a kind of consumer report, or are they an art form? They’re certainly not a consumer report. I can’t say whether or not you will like a film. […]

Rickshaw rides in an aviation age

October 3, 2015


Watching avant-garde theatre in South Korea. A little confounding. A little boring. And yet, exhilarating. The Asia Cultural Center Theater in Gwangju, South Korea, was inaugurated recently, with a three-week-long festival from September 4 to 21. The centre – it’s enormous – aims to establish itself as the hub of Asian contemporary performing arts, and […]