Based On True Events, Bollywood, Crime, Drama, Reality Check, Thriller

The Tashkent Files – Nothing but the truth?

There is a lot of divulgence in this flick, relating to a few blunt, unresolved topics from the Indian politics, in regards to the ex-government. The trailer seemed very intriguing in terms of the controversial topic and a fantastic star cast. It didn’t include a typical Karan Johar high profile cast but consisted of a critically acclaimed [and underrated] star cast.

Well, when speaking about the film, it highlights the fact or fiction sort of a plot which is based on India’s second Prime Minister after independence, Shri Lal Bahadur Shastri‘s death. Herein, the topic is inclusive of some evidences which are followed by a few mouth shutting questions, which I think blurt out everything, indirectly. Intellectual people would understand it faster.

This is one of the many films which has been released in the past four months, on purpose, to obviously showcase something which had been hidden for almost five decades. To show people [especially Indian residents] something factual for them to realize what they were dealing with, for the past sixty years. Yes, I agree that they haven’t presented any evidence in relevance to a few other stated facts, but I think the intention was to just put it out there, to create a buzz.


Now, The Tashkent Files seems to be half documentary – half drama, where there is nothing mind-blowing EXCEPT the topic of argument. Moreover, I quickly glanced through all the reviews and critical analysis of this film, just for the sake of curiosity. I was shocked to see that ALL of the major newspaper and magazine editors and critics giving only negative reviews to the film. I don’t think it deserves that.

Agreed that the film has nothing major to offer [and I don’t speak in support of any political party] but the kind of points which have been pinched, are worth a watch. As usual, for me, the film is only until it’s attention-drawing nature. At least, films like these are much more stirring than the idiocy out there [Total Dhamaal]. Plus, apart from a bit of melodrama by lead actress Shweta Basu Prasad, everybody performed their roles with complete justice and honesty. Especially, Mithun Chakraborty, Mandira Bedi, Naseeruddin Shah, Pallavi Joshi, Vinay Pathak and Pankaj Tripathi.

P.S.:  Vivek Agnihotri (writer & director) shouldn’t have added Shweta‘s awful and displeasing jogging scenes.


Bollywood, Drama, Reality Check, Romantic

Qarib Qarib Singlle – Just another undervalued stunner.

In the Bollywood year of 2017, a lot of films released. While some being box office flops, critically failed or even unknown, films like TubelightTiger Zinda Hai, Judwaa 2, Baadshaho, Raabta, A Gentleman, Poster Boys, Lukhnow Central, RangoonMeri Pyaari Bindu, Munna Michael, Noor, Bhoomi, Simran, Haseena Parker and Chef couldn’t be borne by the audience.


On the contrary, some barely hit mediocrity but still earned their proceeds, some became the low-budget hits or a couple even went way beyond average, critically. In the massive, fast-paced crowd of films like Raees, Hindi Medium, Golmaal Again!!!, Toilet: Ek Prem Katha, Baahubali 2, Kaabil, Bareilly Ki Barfi, Newton, Badrinath Ki Dulhania, Shubh Mangal Saavdhan, Jab Harry Met Sejal, MubarakanNaam Shabaana, Ok Jaanu, Fukrey Returns, Phillauri, Jolly LLB 2 and Shaadi Mein Zaroor Aana, somewhere along the road, people forgot about this beautiful motion picture, originally penned by Kamna Chandra, called as Qarib Qarib Singlle.


Magnificently presented by the daughter of the writer, Tanuja Chandra, who also wrote the screenplay alongside Gazal Dhaliwal, this film will astonish you. It will give you goosebumps, make you smile and giggle. It will give you hope. You’ll be enchanted by the whole experience of the cinematography. You’ll be surprised to hear, post watching it, that it’s all shot in India.


Who could imagine, at this day and era, Irrfan Khan could play a romantic hero and that too so thoroughly with his excellent comic timing, given his usual genre of films. Making the debut in Bollywood industry with this one, Parvathy Kottuvata proves the reason she won those numerous awards and nominations. She is a detailed actor. Made for the camera. Promoting and marketing dating websites, this motion picture proves that you could find love at any age and at a very unusual time, only if you want to.


Without watching the film I had come across a track from it, the lyrics of which gave me goosebumps, the melody soothed me and Atif Aslam garnished it exquisitely with the softer version of his voice. Now, there was a point in the film, around the middle, when this song played. And the moment was so right that I was sold with that one five-minute sequence.

I had been meaning to watch QQS since it’s release but missed it in the theaters and thanked the people at Netflix later, for still keeping it in their library. The plot is strong, the cast is adroit, this is my Netflix recommend.


Inspirational, Reality Check

A modern woman or still a bourgeoise?

Women, the most wonderful creation of God. Something we south-asians brag about. Although, these talks are nothing more than a mere lip service. Why? Well, let’s see.

On one hand, we talk about how women should be given more power and responsibility to grow and how they should be set free to fly. In reality, however, it all applies only when the woman in question is not from our family. Women from our families need to take permission for everything. Right from what they wear to what they talk about and with whom. Our hypocrisy laughs at us when we say, “Oh! I allowed my wife/sister to do so”.

Seriously? We think they need our permission to do things? Who are WE to permit them?

Wait a minute, let’s not jump into conclusion. I am not blaming men for what I said above. Women are equally responsible for this sorry state of theirs. They think that if a guy wants to do all this and keep total control then it is his right, after all, he loves her so much. They forget that if he loves her then so does she, only more intensely, dedicating her everything for his family. There is no trade deal involved in their relation which says that the guy will love the girl and she should take permissions before doing things in return, right?

Some of you will think now, “Come on! We are the new generation and we know what’s right and what’s not.” Yes, we do. But, is knowing alone enough?

When it comes to standing with the right, the first thing we see is who are we standing against. If they are from our family, then very conveniently, we try to justify the right. We all want to be politically correct. Just how can we say, “my family is wrong”, isn’t it?

Be it a girl’s family, who says, “try and adjust with their requirements” or the guy himself who sees his wife being treated rudely and remains a mute spectator.

So let’s see who really is responsible then for such a sorry state of women in our society,

1) Boys / Men, who are made to believe what they are doing is their right.


2) Parents, who fail to reach their children to stand up for what’s right even if it means standing against everyone.


3) Women, who shout on top of their voices about liberty in colleges and offices and go home and say, “Oh, my bro / hubby won’t allow me this”.

Where we say, “Set your goals and strive to attain them.” to our daughters before marriage and then, at a latter stage of their life, say, “Forgo everything as you are married now.” All this hypocrisy just because she is a daughter?

It is high time we stop this farce of empowering women and continue to celebrate how we grind them in the name of responsibility and love. Let us prepare the boys / men of the current generation and the next to face empowering women first, and then teach them to be respectful towards them. Otherwise, aren’t we creating a society of constant conflicts?

For every reader who can relate to something from above, just remember, it is your guilty conscience and if felt bad then please understand, it was purely intended.

Inspirational, Reality Check

Resistance – My own tale of 2017.

At the start of a year, usually, people like to take resolutions, determining what they want to achieve, in order to be better, either for themselves or for their closed ones. Beginning of 2017, I didn’t take a resolution, I took a vow to do something for someone really close to me in my family, and somewhere, maybe, for myself too. I took an oath, to also prove to the world that I AM someone who they presume I am not.

I always think about the good things my parents have taught me since the time I have started understanding what life is all about and one of those things is that before laying a finger at someone else for anything, always notice that three of your fingers would be pointing towards you. And before blaming other people for their habit(s), first check your own.
So what exactly is a habit?

An acquired behavior pattern regularly followed until it has become almost involuntary.

I challenged myself to crush the word ‘habit’ into a thousand pieces, so much that it is mixed well in the desert sand, becoming almost unnoticeable. You must be wondering, what did I do?

I didn’t consume a single bit of alcohol or tobacco for three hundred and sixty five days. Now, OBVIOUSLY, it is the most difficult thing I have ever done. You would also think that you understand what I have gone through. Trust me, you don’t. Having a surrounding of ninety percent people drinking and ninety nine percent drinking & smoking and telling your mind not to do both, in bars, clubs, at pre-drinks, at SHISHA CAFÉs, house get togethers, with family, on birthdays, on anniversaries, IS NOT EASY.

First few months were the toughest. They usually are! Then I started getting used to it. I started driving around people more. I didn’t stop going to shisha cafés because thats mostly where my friends would hang out! Yup, I was helpless. Nevertheless, I went lesser, ergo, met them lesser. So many of my close friends, even my parents insisted me to drink at an occasion or even normally, but I just wouldn’t agree. I am glad that I am blessed with a STRONG mindset.

Back in the day, I had had moments where I had consumed limitless alcohol, SO MANY times. I had heard people talking about me being an alcoholic [when I wasn’t], in my EXTENDED FAMILY and FRIENDS OF FRIENDS. Behind my back, I was being made fun of about my alcoholic habits. I was aware of everything, yet, never uttered a word.


We all are in the era of sharing every single detail on social media. My main purpose of sharing this (as mentioned above already) is for someone close to me, who is addicted to tobacco. I know you’re reading this and I want you to QUIT. It CAN be done. Plus, it is not only for motivating you all to resist your habits but also for setting your mind to the right things and not towards the wrong. I am not telling you to be an extremist like me, but only not to do something so often that you’re sick of it one day. DO NOT let your habit turn into an addictive nightmare.

Never have I used so many I’s in my life, while writing or speaking, but I think it is obligatory here. The question which arrises now is, what henceforth? I don’t know whether I will start again, consume lesser or be normal, like I used to be or even go extreme towards the opposite direction (well, because it HAS been VERY LONG). But, one thing is for sure now that, I can stop it whenever I want to. And now, no one can point that finger at me. Hence, I would like to conclude by saying that,

Addiction is JUST a state of mind and YOU have all the power to change it.

Bollywood, Drama, Hollywood, Reality Check

Life Of Pi – Worthy of an applause.

Breath-taking and electrifying, the only two words which I shall use to describe this film. It is a formidable experience to watch some parts of this film.


Ang Lee, the director, with his superb vision to create such a story which changes the outlook of the Indian audience and takes it to an unconventional level. Hats off to the casting director for bringing out such great talent, i.e. Suraj Sharma. His facial expressions, dialogue delivery and just about everything is perfect. Irrfan Khan with his brilliant narration. Just one thing Irrfan, please don’t try to speak in a fake american accent. Let it be natural, perchance. David Magee and Claudio Miranda giving us some great screenplay and cinematography, respectively.


To be honest, with all the movies I have seen so far, this isn’t the best. However, in the film, the way the script plays out is discernible. A few of the graphical presentations in the latter duration of the film are mesmerizing to watch. Although, the 3D version of Life Of Pi isn’t worth paying for because there are no such effects which could blow one’s mind. Rafe Spall, Tabu and Adil Hussain provide an impactful support to the cast.


Notwithstanding, according to me, the James Franco starrer 127 Hours made by Danny Boyle was a better execution of such kind of inspirational stories, which are based on memoirs or novels, as this one is, on Yann Martel’s novel from 2001, of the same name.