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.

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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

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

Article 15 – The underdog.

A film that urges you to think on your outlook on things. A plot that will make you wonder, how is the country, with the second largest population in the world, working with disobeying one of the biggest rules of the Indian Constitution.

I love it when unusual and unspoken topics come out in the open to gain exposure. Anubhav Sinha, brings us another one of his master stories covering one of the biggest topics in India and probably in the world too, discrimination.

Article 15 speaks about the law of the same name in the constitution of India. It is a tale which describes the immense measures of filth which are used against people who are considered of a lower caste.

It is based on a couple of true incidents in India from the years 2014 and 2016. The way it has been portrayed by Sinha (writer and director), Gaurav Solanki (writer) and Ewan Mulligan (cinematography) is worth watching in the theater, at least once. A great combination of crime, drama and thriller genres along with a remarkable background score makes sure that the chill in your spine remains for a long time. There is hardly any musical videos displayed because of the intense script. Not that it was needed.

Some say that Ayushman Khurrana is always being overrated. But I’d say that he is doing what most big stars deny doing because of their “reputation”. He is working hard and it shows. In this one too, in fact, obviously in conjunction with a few incredible performers, Kumud Mishra, Manoj Pahwa, Isha Talwar, Sayani Gupta, Mohammed Zeeshan Ayyub, Akash Dhabhade, Ashish Verma, Veen and Ronjini Chakraborty.

4/5

Posted in Based On True Events, Biographical, Biopic, Bollywood, Crime, Drama, Political

PM Narendra Modi – Watch it as an INDIAN.

Hope the people who petitioned to postpone the release of this film are happy now. Now that he is actually elected to serve for another five years. They thought a film would contribute in getting him more votes.

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Throwing light to the film, the best part about it, without any second thought, is Vivek Oberoi. I, along with many others, was really incredulous about him playing the biggest and the most important role of his career. The trailer, too, seemed cheesy and even the look and getup of Oberoi wasn’t convincing. Plus, the release got cancelled, I had assumed earlier. But it was just postponed.

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I will remind you again, that I am not speaking or praising this film because of my personal political views. I hate to admit that as a film, it felt incomplete. A lot of melodrama and emotion was added, going in favor of the Indian Prime Minister. On my brother’s good observation, PM Narendra Modi just pointed out the goods of the person of interest. His life’s story is averagely conceptualized by Sandeep Ssingh who wrote the screenplay. However, the direction could have been better. Omung Kumar‘s (director) best creation till date has been Sarbjit of 2016.

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Music department is bold enough to try Gujrati rap as background score. Withal, the tracks made for this are mediocre.

Alike all other political films made this year, this one too, is made just for awareness. For the audience who still aren’t aware of the man’s history. A lot of false stories have been given clarity to, through this film. Initially, Paresh Rawal was to depict the character of the Prime Minister Of India, which the whole world, including myself, felt would have been apt. Mainly because, his face structure better matched than of Vivek‘s. A.K.A lesser facial make-up and silicon. His accent would have been very much similar. Oh and he is good friends with the PM.

I am assuming, because he had to play his character from his younger days until today, they needed someone younger. And maybe because daddy made a few calls. That being said, let’s get to the verdict. The motion picture would have done wonders, if the direction was given more attention to. If the story would have been more pragmatic. Plus, alongside Vivek Oberoi giving full justice to his character, surprisingly, he is backed up by a few great old hats, Manoj Joshi, Boman Irani, Zareena Wahab, Yatin Kareykar and Prashant Narayanan. A bit of comedy is garnished on top because of the distinctive characters in the Indian National Congress.

3/5

Posted in Based On True Events, Bollywood, Crime, Drama, Romantic, Television, Thriller

Mirzapur – Who’s the KING?

It is so difficult to find such raw television shows today, where the plot is so strong. Hearing the fact that it might actually be true, makes me wonder what is happening within this state in India. Is it all about political gains and the rule of the local mafia in Uttar Pradesh?

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The show received mixed reviews and out of which mostly were negative, pointing out the disapproval of the story and direction by many analysts. Just clearing out this that I, being a part of the vast TV watching audience, state that it is to our benefit. While most critics called it a rip off of the kind of genre of stories Anurag Kashyap likes to make, I would say that it is to our advantage that we are getting more variety to watch on the internet! It’s ideology might be similar to as of Kashyap‘s but the base of the plot, it’s cast and it’s turning point of the story and the creation is quite distinctive. Breathtaking, too.

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Mirzapur has it’s own swag and nature of impressing the audience. The fact that season two is already under production proves that not all viewers within India or out of India have disliked the theme and the style of this web series. It has a great, an almost perfect cast which blends in and shows it’s importance in it, quite magnificently. I would love to shower praises to the cast, Pankaj Tripathi, Vikrant Massey, Ali Fazal, Amit Sial, Divyendu Sharma, Rajesh Tailang, Sheeba Chaddha, Shweta Tripathi, Shriya Pilgaonkar, Rasika Dughal, Kulbushan Kharbanda, Abhishek Banerjee, Shubrajyoti Bharat, Shaji Chaudhary and Shahnawaz Pradhan. Also to it’s writers and makers, Karan Anshuman, Puneet Krishna, Gurmeet Singh, Vineet Krishnan, Mihir Desai and Nisha Chandra.

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Yes, it might not be the show of the year for many. I say it’s worth a watch. Not only for it’s story and cast, but for it’s weighty dialogue too.

4/5

Posted in Based On True Events, Bollywood, Drama, Reality Check, Television, TV

Made In Heaven – I didn’t want it to end!

The show is so compelling that it forced me to open my blog and write about it. It is one of the most deserving television shows I have ever witnessed. I am privileged and honored to write about this marvel.

Initially, when I heard a buzz around in the social media and through word of mouth, I wasn’t curious to know as to what it is and why are people talking about it so much. I assumed that it must be some romance flavored, fruitful show – which I probably won’t be interested in.

All I needed was one more recommendation to watch it. My brother did that and as soon as I finished the show I was watching before this (Inside Edge), I started what I didn’t know would be one of the best shows I would ever watch. The topic what they have focused on is indeed a very large one. I admired and adored each and every episode which was made and thought of, with absolute class. It has enough power to generate all kinds of emotions. Gave me goosebumps. Gave me teary eyes. Made me smile wide. Made me frown. Gave me hope.

Each and every thing involved in story telling and which is to be portrayed in front of the camera is given the utmost detail. The costumes, the casting, the dialogue and the camerawork. Made In Heaven is a profound show. It revolves around India’s mightiest weddings and their innermost flaws, realities and tales. At first, I presumed that it is all about the behind the scenes of such Indian (traditional and rich) weddings. Their deepest and darkest secrets. But, after a few episodes, I learned what this show was really about.

I would love to give my hearty congratulations to the whole cast and crew of the show [secretly hoping for you to read this article of appreciation]. There is a long list of crew but I would specially mention, the writers and the directors, Zoya Akhtar (director & writer), Reema Kagti (writer), Alankrita Shrivastava (director & writer), Nitya Mehra (director) Prashant Nair (director). Apart from this, the actors who have really showed what a true performance is, Arjun Mathur, Shobhita Dhulipala, Kalki Koechilin, Jim Sarbh, Shashank Arora, Shivani Raghuvanshi, Vinay Pathak, Vijay Raaz, all the guest appearances and recurring cast.

M.I.H very evidently depicts the struggles of the people of the LGBTQ community over the decades. Not to mention, this was before the ground-breaking day for them arrived, last year, where the law of Section 377 was made unconstitutional. It also speaks about relationships which you never consider to be important, actually are the most valuable ones and are the only ones which prosper at the end. I have never been so proud to know that everything in India has been evolving, rapidly, on a major scale. What was already legalized in the foreign countries, years ago, is OKAY in India too. Because of this, India is NOW is actually becoming democratic and boosting such kind of bold cinema to be released and showcased in the country, without any roadblocks.

5/5

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

Setters – Have you heard of it?

No promotions. Hardly any advertisements. No show. A reasonable music and film trailer launch No glamour. You’ll only come to know about Setters when you check your cinema application for new film releases or YouTube for new trailers.

With a micro budget set, this film consists of a few beautiful actors and some rough-and-ready ones. There is no second thoughts to how interesting the concept of the plot is. It will remind you of Special 26. It will also remind you of The Tashkent Files [if you have seen it], a bit in terms of story, but mainly in terms of how the film is set with skillful actors who usually play in supportive roles in the big films and are playing the lead these small ones (positively or negatively), which usually have a better tale to tell.

The plot drives you through it’s own twists and turns. Background score is the best part about the film, which in turn means that full marks go to the duo Salim-Sulaiman, Raftaar, Enbee and Sukhwinder Singh. Artists have a pivotal role in making a motion picture whole. Herein, all of them have aided the film to make it better. Especially, Pavan Malhotra, Vijay Raaz, Jameel Khan, Anil Charanjeett, Manu Rishi and Shreyas Talpade. We also witness Aftab Shivdasani after eons, who was away from the limelight for a long, long time.

Even though it might not get the exposure it desires, it could be a part of a one-time-watch category. Ashwini Chaudhary has done well, in terms of the direction. However, him and Vikash Mani could have bettered the screenplay, which lacked the X-Factor. Perhaps, could have made it a little less elongated, too.

3/5