Movie Reviews - Part 2

A post which has been long overdue - the 'part 2' of my earlier post. I watched all these movies almost an year ago, but never got around to completing the draft which I had begun then. Today being the third anniversary of this blog, I decided that I should at least complete and post this to mark the occasion :-).


Based on Shakespeare's Othello. Ajay Devgan is Omkara (Othello). Saif Ali Khan is just too good as the baddie, "Langda" Tyagi (Iago). Kareena Kapoor plays the role of Dolly (Desdemona) and she does it surprisingly well. Pukka North Indian accents and mannerisms all around, including the swearing. Vishal Bharadwaj's music and Gulzar's lyrics complement each other. Vishal does a great job as director too. Highly recommended.


Mani Ratnam and A R Rahman combo, which naturally implies good music. Shreya's Barso Re is the pick of the lot. Abhishek Bachchan takes the honours on the acting front. Mithunda does some good work too. Reminds one of his role in Agneepath for which he won the 1991 Filmfare Award for Best Supporting Actor. Check out the Wikipedia article on Dhirubhai Ambani to see the "plot" similarities :-).


Shiney Ahuja shines in the titular role. His expressions convey more emotions than the few lines which he is allotted. Superb music by Pritam. Kangana Ranaut essays the role of the gangster's moll.

Woh Lamhe

Shiney & Kangana again. Plot based on the relationship between Mahesh Bhatt and Parveen Babi. Pritam composes a winner again. Recommended.

Hazaaron Khwaishein Aisi

Shiney (Vikram), Chitrangada Singh (Geeta) and Kay Kay Menon (Siddharth). A triangle of love, politics & business set in the 1970s. Sudhir Mishra at his best. Definitely a must-see.


Pure, unadulterated torture. I took nearly a week to finish this one. Extremely silly, lots of overacting, bad direction, the list of cons goes on and on. Supposedly based on Love Actually to some extent. Music by Shankar, Ehsaan & Loy is reasonably good.

Pirates of the Caribbean - Dead Man's Chest

The second movie in the trilogy. It has its moments, but isn't as good as the first one.

A Beautiful Mind

I had read the book by Sylvia Nasar around 3 years ago. The movie skips over a lot of the stuff from the book. Nevertheless it is a pretty good adaptation. Jennifer Connelly won the Oscar (Best Actress in a Supporting Role) for her role as John Nash's wife.

Blood Diamond

Loved it. DiCaprio is great. So is Djimon Hounsou. Jennifer Connelly looks jaded though.

The Prestige

One of my favourites. Christopher Nolan directs Hugh Jackman, Christian Bale, Michael Caine & Scarlett Johansson. Bale is superb as usual. The climactic revelation is "magical", to say the least. Based on the book by the same name.


Will be remembered for its focus on Jiah Khan's legs and pout. And of course, the opposition by various parties to the 'immoral' content in the movie - people were seemingly afraid that it would give 'ideas' to older men and 'corrupt' them :-). Whatever. Decent acting, music and direction.

The Departed

Another good one. Strong cast, good story. And Martin Scorsese finally got his long overdue Best Director Oscar.

Spider-Man 3

Spidey gets in touch with his emotional side and other assorted crap. Boring.

Bas Ek Pal

A good story (probably based on Pedro Almodóvar's Carne Trémula, which in turn is loosely based on Ruth Rendell's book Live Flesh). Music by Mithoon is pretty good, especially the title song.

Life in a Metro

Hummable tunes by Pritam. Irfan Khan and Konkona Sen Sharma are good.

Tags : Movies

Posted by Rajat @ 10:30 PM   |  Comments

Movie Reviews - Part 1

Here's my take on some of the movies I caught up with recently (chronological order) :-

Happy Feet

An animated movie about Emperor penguins in Antarctica. Superb animation. Cute penguins. Good music. I especially liked the idea of the young penguins making use of aurora australis as disco lights at their graduation party. I felt the ending was a bit too hurried & somewhat preachy.


Pathetic attempt at remaking the original Amitabh starrer. Shahrukh is as bad as ever. Kareena's item number is so grossly choreographed & executed - Helen must have felt disgusted after seeing this - Sunidhi Chauhan's rendition of the song is bad too. Thankfully the Don bumps off Kareena just after the song - he too must have been put off by the song & dance ;-). The other songs aren't any better - especially egregious is the "Khaike Paan Banaraswala" one. The ending had the scent of a sequel. I hope it never gets made.

Kabhi Alvida Naa Kehna

Long movie which could have been easily cut by half. Shahrukh Khan (Dev Saran) overacts as usual. Rani Mukherjee (Maya) is irritating. Preity Zinta (Rhea Saran) & Abhishek Bachchan (Rishi Talwar) don't have much to do. Amitabh Bachchan is wasted in his role as Samarjit "Sexy Sam" Talwar. But this movie is much better than Karan Johar's last directorial venture, the very horrible Kabhi Khushi Kabhi Gham (shudder). The visuals are good as the movie is completely shot in New York. Music by Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy is decent. I particularly liked one scene where Sam & Dev are seated at the opposite ends of the dinner table. Shahrukh hams his way through the scene while Amitabh conveys his emotions just with his eyes. Ah! All that talk of rivalry & competition between the two actors is rubbish - Shahrukh is no match for Amitabh. Period.

Dhoom 2

Dhoom 2 is entirely about Hrithik Roshan (Aryan). Abhishek Bachchan (ACP Jai Dixit) just does his job. Aishwarya Rai (Sunehri) makes an ass of herself by overusing 'like' in every sentence she can. But the surprise package is Uday Chopra (Ali) who 'rises' above the rest of the cast in a producer-backed role. His comic timing, his facial expressions (both of them) and his beefcake physique all enable him to deliver a powerful performance. With just one moronic constipated look he can make you tear your hair in frustration. Bipasha Basu's double role (Shonali & Monali Bose) does not make sense at all. I suspect she was first cast as the cop and did some chase sequences. Then the director realised they couldn't do any skin show with a serious cop. Conveniently , Shonali gets injured and in pops her twin sister Monali to do the bikini level stunts. Rimi Sen as Jai's pregnant wife Sweety is inconsequential - she just eats fish in one scene and talks in Bengali. The worst part is Ali thinks he can sway away Shonali from Jai using his looks! He also has a song ("My name is Ali") with Monali! After watching his "talking to Mummy" scenes I think there would be a huge potential for punching bags with Uday on them - should be a good stress reliever. The Dhoom franchise is going from bad to worse, so to speak - I heard that Dhoom 3 will have Shahrukh! I say just add in Kareena & get Karan Johar to direct it & you can just skip the 'worse' & go to 'worst'. But then, they would need to change the title of the movie (Karan has this fetish for titles beginning with 'K') - my suggestion - "Kaun Machayega Dhoom?" - effectively "Who will be the worst of 'em all?".


The sequel to Koi Mil Gaya. Hrithik again as Krishna, Rohit's son. Kids should love this movie. Watchable. Priyanka looks gorgeous. Rajesh Roshan's music is good. You can expect a sequel. One glaring mistake is the use of heartbeat for biometric authentication which AFAIK can't be done - the password for unlocking the computer which can see the future is Rohit's retina scan combined with his heartbeat scan. Once you see the movie it should be obvious why the heartbeat scan was chosen. I might as well not spoil the suspense in case you ever decide to watch the movie.

More reviews are in the pipeline.

Tags : Movies

Posted by Rajat @ 2:06 PM   |  Comments

Doodle - 3

Ash-Hrithik Kiss

For more details, check out this news report. Greatbong has a good review of the movie here. I presume Emraan (Hashmi) & Mallika (Sherawat) need no introduction. And I am yet to see the movie.

P.S. : I am back after a long hiatus - my 'hectic social life' had taken up most of my spare time ;-).

Tags : Cartoons, Humour, Movies

Posted by Rajat @ 12:22 AM   |  Comments

A villain remembered

The year was 1996. It had been around 2 months since I had entered high school, when I received a letter from my 'alma mater' asking me to attend that year's Independence Day celebrations in our locality as I would be receiving an award for being the school topper in the Class VII examinations. I knew there would be some big names at the event as it had been the practice of the organisers to invite prominent personalities from various fields to the function. Naturally I was excited at the prospect of being 'feted' by some big shot :-). However I was a tad disappointed to learn that the award would be given by Vajramuni, one of the most popular villains in the Kannada film industry. The appropriateness of inviting a 'bad guy' to give away an award for 'academic excellence' to impressionable youngsters was lost on me at that time. August 15th arrived and I went to the venue along with my parents & my kid brother. Now, Vajramuni had a characteristic style of demonstrating villainy - while plotting the downfall of the hero (usually Rajkumar) his eyes would narrow down to slits, his anger would be theatrical to the core, the typical sneer would be present most of the times. It was rather strange to see the same man looking serious in a dignified way and actually smiling kindly. In the end, he presented me with a cup & also garlanded my dad. I still have two photographs of the award ceremony.

This man who had been jailed, beaten & killed innumerable times on the silver screen, expired for the last time on January 5, 2006. I learnt about this the next day when I glanced at the front page of the newspaper before leaving for office. All through my journey to the office, a sense of sadness prevailed. Though I had met the man for a few fleeting moments, his presence that day had impressed upon me the distinction between reel & real life.

May his soul rest in peace.

Tags : Bangalore, Blogger Days, Life, Movies

Posted by Rajat @ 10:58 PM   |  Comments

The son of the soil is back!

It has been nearly a month & a half since I posted anything. This long gap has ensued due to a plethora of factors, the most prominent among them being my laziness & my tendency to procrastinate. Anyway, better late than never.

For what follows below, you will need to install Kannada fonts for your computer (that is, if they are not already installed). The same can be downloaded from the Baraha (which is an excellent freeware for document creation in Indian languages) website which can be reached by clicking here.

Sample this :-

ಎಯ್, ಏನು ಹೇಳ್ತೀಯಾ?
ಎಯ್, ಏನು ಹೇಳಲಿ ನಾ?
ಬರ್ತೀಯಾ ಖಂಡಾಲಾಗೆ?
ಏನು, ಮಾಡಲಿ,
ಬಂದು ಖಂಡಾಲಾಗೆ?
ಅಯ್ಯೊ ಅಲಿಯೋಣ, ಸುತ್ತೋಣ,
ಕುಣಿಯೋಣ, ಹಾಡೋಣ,
ಮಜಾ ಮಾಡೋಣ ಏನಂತೀಯಾ?

Well, that was the literal (almost) translation of the popular Aati Kya Khandala song from the Hindi movie Ghulam into Kannada. This movie starring Aamir Khan & Rani Mukherjee was directed by Vikram Bhatt & was based on the English classic On the waterfront by Elia Kazan. This song was sung by Aamir Khan himself along with Alka Yagnik. Anu Malik was the music director & the lyrics for this particular song were composed by Nitin Raikwar. Aamir himself was asked to lend his voice for the song because the song is basically a lyrical conversation between a tapori (from Mumbai, where else?) & his 'posh' girlfriend and the director felt that a natural approach would be best. The rest is history.

For the benefit of those who cannot read or understand Kannada, an English translation follows :-

Hey, what do you say?
Hey, what do I say?
Coming to Khandala?
What, will I do,
after reaching Khandala?
We will roam 'n' wander 'n' dance 'n' sing;
generally have fun, what else?

I have refrained from reproducing the actual Hindi song here, for the simple reason that if you have never heard the song, you won't know, literally & figuratively, what I am talking about.

Tags : Blogger Days, Movies

Posted by Rajat @ 8:48 PM   |  Comments