Posted in Bollywood, Comedy, Drama, Fiction, Inspirational, Reality Check

Dream Girl – Eye-catcher.

Ayushmann Khurrana actually did tell the audience to leave their brains at home before going for this one. It is that kind of an entertainer. It was quite a bold move, saying that aloud, but I did that and he was right. And no, it is not similar, but, it is way more interesting and funnier than Total Dhamaal.

It is Raaj Shaandilyaa‘s first directorial in films. Let me remind you that Raaj is responsible for direction and content writing for Sony TV’s hit show Comedy Circus. Well, until Kapil Sharma got out. Without a doubt, this film is going to be a hit. The timing and the quality of it’s comedic punches were on point. This is Shaandilyaa‘s specialty. Couldn’t have gone wrong.

The originality of the concept is what impressed me more than anything. In the story, some great stereotypes were broken. There was a tiny message too. It was also the brilliant character creation for this particular concept that caught my attention. I could sense a lot of satire too, coming from a mind behind the many Comedy Circus scripts. All the characters fit perfectly in the film. Although, I did get a vibe of Anees Bazmee during the flick, in terms of the plot and cinematography. Yes! It is way better than Mubarakan. Even though it was timed to 132 minutes, it felt like the film is going to take forever to end. This, indeed, was the biggest drawback.

Full marks to Khurrana (as Karam Singh/Pooja) and the supporting cast. Lovely performances by all. Especially, Annu Kapoor (as Jagjeet Singh), Rajesh Sharma (as W), Manjot Singh (as Smiley), Vijay Raaz (as Rajpal), debutante Raj Bhansali (as Toto) and Abhishek Banerjee (as Mahendar). Meet Bros give shipshape music. Plus, I am really happy that the trend of all eleven songs playing in the film with choreography is ending. Herein, there were two, which were obligatory. All in all, you should and must take your family or friends along with you to enjoy this one!

3.5/5

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Posted in Bollywood, Comedy, Drama, Fiction, Inspirational, Psychological, Reality Check, Romantic, Sports

Chhichhore – Entertainingly inspirational.

The writer and director of Dangal enters the ring again and this time without the ‘A’ factor. Could he (Nitesh Tiwari) actually do something as wondrous as his last directorial? Let’s find out.

First of all, full points to the casting director and the cast itself. Not only the the extremely talented Sushant Singh Rajput (as Anirudh “Anni” Pathak), Shraddha Kapoor (as Maya), Prateik Babbar (as Raggie) and Varun Sharma (as Gurmeet “Sexa” Singh Dhillon) gave great performances but the newbies and the lesser experienced Tahir Raj Bhasin (as Derek), Naveen Polishetty (as Acid), Tushar Pandey (as Sunder “Mummy” Saxena), Saharsh Kumar (as Bevda) and Mohammed Samad (as Raghav) too were exceptional.

The predictable plot inspires us with a message which is mostly directed towards the young students of India. Chhichhore is surprisingly funny. It gets serious when necessary. It generates hope. It has concentrated on a topic which has just been a tad part of a few films before. Nitesh Tiwari, Piyush Gupta and Nikhil Mehrotra, the screenplay writers, enhance this topic with grace and successfully keep it peppy at the same time.

The music by Pritam is not too bad. It doesn’t interfere in anyway in the film. Just graciously plays as a background score, adding the required emotion to it. Plus, the kind of reviews I have been hearing about last week’s Saaho, I surmise it is safe to say that this one’s a better watch.

3.5/5

Posted in Based On True Events, General, Inspirational, Non-Fiction

The Compliment.

People close to me know that I dislike praises. I might appreciate you, if I liked something you did, but I feel shy on receiving them. In the month of February, I attended a friend’s wedding with one of my close friends. We set our arrival dates to match together so that we land around the same time. It’s good to attend weddings because you not only get to bless the bride and groom, but you also get to meet new people and especially various kinds of elders.

My close friend (who I was staying with during the wedding and with whom I planned our itinerary) and I had already decided that we are going to perform at the bride’s Sangeet. Both of us were called ‘the guests from Dubai’ at the wedding. You don’t expect so many international invitees if it’s a local Indian wedding. The bride’s side were kind and were very happy to have us.

We had practiced a few times in Dubai and a couple of quick practices before the performances (because I was nervous). I dislike screwing it up. After watching and cheering for all other performances, the moment arrived.

We danced on the two numbers we had and as usual I forgot almost all the main steps but luckily I didn’t screw up completely because my dance partner knew them all. Hence, I wasn’t looking straight at the audience, well, most of the time.

The bride’s side had booked a beautiful villa/lodge, where all the small events and rituals would take place and it had a lot of rooms. So, most of the guests who had come from different states were living in it, including us. It didn’t take us time to get mixing with the relatives. Even though most of them were our parent’s age or even older. There were, however, a few of our age – who were the bride’s college or school mates.

We would all, gather around every morning, for breakfast in the same hall downstairs. Eat and mingle together. The morning after the Sangeet happened, we were standing at the buffet and there was this uncle who has been an ex-military colonel, who I had had a good conversation with, during the previous breakfasts. We were all at the line of buffet and all the elders were already finished with their breakfasts long before us because we always were the late comers.

He stopped me, pulled me out of the queue gently, to tell me something. I was shocked at first, thinking what was going on. I was scared for a minute thinking what did I do wrong!?

Fortunately, it wasn’t something wrong that I did, it was something miraculous. It was not intended but I am REALLY glad that I could make a person feel that way. The uncle, who was from the bride’s side, obviously, was decent and elegant. He carried a great persona, yet, was a little old fashioned.

What he said, not only gave me goosebumps, but it also made me realize that not only money can buy happiness, even a compliment can and only a few words can make someone eternally happy.

His approximate words were, “Beta, what you did last night on the dance floor definitely entertained us. The joy you brought us from your spirit of dancing not only helped me be happier but it also made my health better at that point of time. Keep doing this. God bless you with all the happiness and good luck for your future endeavors.”

I was smiling, constantly. I was blushing. I went numb for a few seconds. My thank yous were sounding like whispers. I had goosebumps. I hadn’t felt this awestruck since maybe forever. I felt on top of the world.

Thus, I just wanted to share this with all my readers. Please never stop doing good things in life. You never know, you might unintentionally make someone’s day. Stay happy. Keep smiling, no matter what. And thank you for reading.

Posted in Black Comedy, Crime, Drama, Fiction, Mystery, Psychological, Suspense, Television, Thriller, TV

Dexter – Sensational

Who would have thought that an antagonist could actually be so intimidating that everybody start to love him. Well, the director and screen writer, James Manos Jr. surely kept this for the audience to decide. Sure, it is based on the novel, Darkly Dreaming Dexter by Jeff Lindsay, but Manos Jr. made sure it aired on television.

Episode 811

If we talk about the plot and the direction of a television series, I can assure you that this is one of the best you’ll ever see. Now, this was created in the time where technology hadn’t been so much of an aid to the screenplay, hence, it was the story and the cast, taking on the full responsibility of deciding whether or not it is going to be a hit.

Now, seeking through the blurry images in my mind, I remember I had read someone’s status on Facebook, praising about this Dexter show and as all the users usually swipe up the news feed ignoring most of the normal stuff, I also let this status pass on to view the next funny “meme”.

julie-benz-dexter-tv-series-2x04-stills-hq-01-1500

Who would have thought that many years later, I would actually end up watching the show and love it unconditionally. Although, I must warn you that it might not be for everyone. Especially for the psychologically weak people. No offense but it does categorize under psychological thriller and dark comedy alongside crime drama and mystery. Plus, it did create a few real time, heavily inspired murderers.

A big round of applause to the main, recurring [Michael. C. Hall (as Dexter Morgan) – who undoubtedly stole the show, Jennifer Carpenter (as Debra Morgan), Erik King (as James Doakes), Lauren Vélez (as Maria LaGuerta), David Zayas (as Angel Batista), Julie Benz (as Rita Bennett), James Remar (as Harry Morgan), C. S. Lee (as Vince Masuka), Desmond Harrington (as Joey Quinn), Geoff Pierson (as Thomas Matthews) and Aimee Garcia (as Jamie Batista)] and the guest cast for their mind-blowing performances.

I must praise the intriguing story and how successfully it maintained it’s quality throughout the eight seasons. It is ruthless. It is frightening. It is nail-biting. It is a cold-blooded suspense thriller. If you have the heart, I would recommend this one.

4.5/5

Posted in Bollywood, Crime, Drama, Fiction, Mystery, Psychological, Suspense, Television, Thriller, TV

Sacred Games 2 – A let down.

When you have set your standards so high, you have got to go higher! Not come slipping down. Also, you need to be really careful when you are unveiling a story of the past. It MUST be equal or higher in terms of generating inclination towards it. At least, I am not disappointed with the newly added cast [Ranvir Shorey (as Shahid Khan) and Kalki Koechlin (as Batya Abelman)] because they didn’t seem improper or out of place.

For those who also have seen Game Of Thrones, you’ll agree to my next few words. Khanna Guruji‘s (played by Pankaj Tripathi) and Daenerys Targaryen‘s (Mother Of The Dragons/Khaleesi) thinking is exactly the same. AND both of these revelations came to me as a shock, as it might have come to you too.

Yes, you might have heard, it is slow until the episode five because it takes you through the audacious Ganesh Gaitonde‘s (played by Nawazuddin Siddiqui) second phase of life. Notwithstanding, the grade of the last episode just falls down the cliff. So, we waited all this while to watch three good episodes of Sacred Games 2? Unbelievably, the makers have left the show hanging, ending it with another suspense which makes it seem like there will be a third season.

I definitely don’t blame any of the cast because they gave exceedingly exceptional performances. All of them! The direction couldn’t be any better (by Neeraj Ghaywan and Anurag Kashyap). The plot or the screenplay (by Dhruv Narang, Pooja Tolani, Nihit Bhave and Varun Grover) is what I am heavily concerned about. It is just went below the expectation.

2/5

Posted in Action, Adventure, Comedy, Drama, Fiction, Hollywood, SciFi, Superhero, Technology

Spider-Man: Far From Home – My restrained views.

It is so difficult to write about Marvel films without letting out a spoiler. Especially in the second installment of this franchise.

It is a fun film. As usual. Since it gives you a very teenage kind of feeling, everything is really advanced, rapid and modern. I loved Chris McKenna and Eric Sommers‘s script, having just the right amount of everything. The story put through is obviously the next chapter, post Avengers: End Game and explains casually, how Peter Parker is affected, after the sad demise of Tony Stark (Iron Man).

The direction (by Jon Watts – who also directed the first part) is great. The technological/graphical parts of the film [which is most of the film] will impress you. A lot. It is really mind blowing what all you can create by just putting green screens everywhere around the actors and letting a computer do it’s part. Undoubtedly, the graphic and/or VFX (visual effects) designers do most of it.

One thing I couldn’t understand is that how Mary Jane’s (MJ) character has completely taken a turn from what we had witnessed in the Tobey Maguire‘s Spider-Man series. Herein, MJ (played by Zendaya) is completely obsessed with Peter Parker [and weirdly stalks him too] since the first part, Spider-Man: Homecoming. It was a complete different scenario in Sam Raimi‘s directed Spider-Man franchise.

It is rejuvenating to have a new character, Jake Gyllenhaal (as Mysterio) who actually enhanced the film. He is truly a brilliant actor. Sober, yet effective. The twists and turns in this sequel, along with great suspenseful moments will keep surprising you every now and then. The comedy portion is a little less, however present, compared to other Marvel films.

Everything has changed, ever since the brilliant Tom Holland (as Peter Parker/Spider-Man) has taken over. The costumes, the actors, the names, the villains. For the most basic examples, Aunt May/May Parker’s character is now played by the sizzling Marisa Tomei or Peter Parker has a best friend, Ned Leeds (played by Jacob Batalon). Beginning from 2002, what Spider-Man (played by Tobey Maguire) used to be and what it is now. How the characters revolving around him have altered. How Spider-Man got involved with Avengers. The inclusion of Tony Stark/Iron Man in his life. I have accepted it. It’s great. Yet, deep down somewhere in my heart, I will always miss Tobey Maguire. What he created on the screen was something else. Unspeakable. Magic.

4/5

Posted in Based On True Events, Bollywood, Crime, Drama

Super 30 – The unexpected comeback.

After Bang Bang!, he said he isn’t interested in a remake. Then he took more than two and a half years to appear in a film. As a fan, I almost gave up until I saw the poster of Super 30.

Hrithik Roshan has beaten all odds and mastered himself in dance and acting since the last two decades. He occasionally sings as well. And he did his homework on the local Uttar Pradesh accent before this film. But I don’t know whether it is his luck or his personal life which is really affecting him because he is yet to choose a game-changing script.

The topic chosen in this film is interesting and one cannot complain about the lead and supporting actors because including Roshan, the newbies and the veterans, Mrunal Thakur, Virendra Saxena, Pankaj Tripathi, Aditya Shrivastava, Nandish Singh and Vijay Varma (and Amit Sadh with a cameo) have given their best, BUT, the flick is so stretched that a moviegoer will feel agitated at some point. The script (Sanjeev Dutta) could have been sharpened a little more.

Look, it is set to give a good inspiration. It is based on a real person with the same name as the lead character’s and his life-changing mission. There are good moments in the film too. Some of the scenes are even hitting the right chord of emotion by providing a reality check.

At the same time, the graph of this film isn’t constant or continuously rocketing, it is going like a heartbeat. Wavering. I am guessing Vikas Bahl‘s (director) stars were in the right position only at the time of Queen (2014). Even the music (AjayAtul) is okay. The track Basanti No Dance is composed, choreographed and performed well. It was also great to hear Udit Narayan again, in a proper song (Jugraafiya) and not a remodel.

This motion picture made me realise how and why a poor person takes time to respond to a person superior in terms of caste, cash, creed or color, if confronted. It’s sad. Super 30 is shown to the world from the poor person’s perception. Slowly.

3.5/5