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The Hangover

Posted In: , . By John F



Title : The Hangover
Director : Someone with a real keen sense of humour or Todd Phillips
Starring : Bradley Cooper, Ed Helms, Zach Galifianakis, Justin Bartha, Heather Graham, Ken Jeong, Mike Tyson
Length : about 100 minutes

Describe the movie in one word: ROTFLMAO!

New Feature! Thanks to my good friend William Addison I am introducing a new feature with this review. This feature is called "JRFRS or John's Realistic Film Rating System". Basically I will start giving practical ratings to every movie that I review in terms of its content so that you can get a realistic idea of whether to let your kids watch this movie or not. Of course they will somehow manage to watch it no matter what you do, but hey! at least you will be a bit deluded.

So JRFRS for The Hangover is - 18+. Lots of straight sexual references, some naked scenes and very strong language.

Plot:
Four guys go to Las Vegas to organize a bachelor party for one of them who is to be married in a couple of days. They do the typical stuff that any four "bored to death of their lives" guys will do in Las Vegas i.e. all weird shite under the sun. When they wake up the next morning in their villa in the hotel they realize

1. The villa is truly focked up. It is worse than G.W. Bush's reputation in world politics. It is crappier than Tony Blair's public image and stinks just as bad.
2. There is an infant in the cupboard! Yup, no pranks here, there is an actual living infant in the cupboard!
3. There is a live breathing roaring tiger in the bathroom

and

4. The groom is missing!

Uh oh! Problems eh? Well never mind. Nothing that can not be sorted then. But hold on! What is this then! None of them remaining three can remember "anything" at all from the previous night. They are all completely blank. Don't know what happened and who did what. They must now retrace their steps somehow, figure out whose baby it is, just where the fock the tiger came from and where in the world is the groom!


My Psychobabble - Holy focking crap! LOL! The movie is good. A bit slow in its execution where sometimes things just stretch on and on forever but the movie IS brilliant! To my readers who are not into Bollywood movies let me tell you that there was a movie that was released last year titled "Sunday" which was kind of based on the same idea as this one. And that movie was quite brilliant as well! Let me know if you would like to know more about it and I shall do a review of that one too.


Anyways back to The Hangover. I must say that the "baby in the cupboard and the tiger in the bathroom" concept is seriously and I mean seriously interesting. I mean how the hell can you get a tiger in your bathroom in Las Vegas! A baby you can perhaps imagine. You got drunk, snatched a baby from a mother (you bastard!) and brought it to your room. But a tiger!? How the hell!?

Tangent: When I used to work for a hedge fund I had this colleague who was basically Australian but have been in UK for about 10 years now. He told us once of this night when in US him and his few friends got amazingly drunk and decided to bring back some crazy souvenirs back to their appt. They split into teams of twos and threes and decided to meet back at the appt. When his team turned back up, they had with them a freakin' traffic light pole which they ripped off! However they were asked to come into the bathroom by one of the guys from the other team. When they entered the bathroom they saw a focking penguin going splash splash splash in the bath tub! The other team had actually broken into a zoo to steal a freakin' penguin!


OK back to the review now - Right so yes the movie is a bit slow in its execution. Things take a little too long to sort of "happen". But once you know something is about to go crazy, you are perched up at the end of your seat holding your breath back to see just what does the magician will pull out of his hat this time. More often than not instead of rabbits and pigeons it is a whole elephant and a pink one at that and you don't know whether to laugh at it or just be purely amazed on how he managed to do that!



The characters in the movie are perfect. The groom guy is a bit of a waste as he only gets very limited amount of reel real estate (see what I did that with reel and real? I am a genius!) but the other three are perfect in their parts. Phil slides easily into the skin of his character who is a handsome middle aged man, bored of his life and ready to do whatever shite gives him a kick of thrill. Alan is the clich├ęd weirdo who when needed turns into this blackjack genius and Dr. Stu Price the perfect subdued gentleman whose wild side is just unimaginable!

Verdict: Quite a good movie which will definitely leave you tickling long after it has ended. I would suggest it is definitely worth a watch!

 


Title: Transformers Revenge of The Fallen

Director: Michael Bay

Starring: Shia LaBeouf, Megan oomph Fox, Josh Duhamel

Length: around 150 minutes

Describe the movie in one word: ErrrrrrrrrrAhemmmmErrrrrrrrrYeahGood

Plot:
Starscream returns to Cybertron and assumes the command of Decepticons. They start regrouping and soon return to earth and steal the body of Megatron from US millitary. They manage to bring him back to life (roll eyes here) and attack Autobots and our Earth(once again). Only this time they are stronger and bolder and have an ancient secret up their sleeves. If you are wondering what "The Fallen" refers to in the title then sorry I can not reveal it here as it would mean including spoilers.

My Psychobabble: Errr I really don't know what to say (yes its true, sometimes I can be shut up too!). On one hand I kind of enjoyed the movie. I mean come on now guys how can you dislike any movie that almost begins with a shot of Megan Fox hunched over a very hot bike in denim shorts and a tight top! Just that one scene was worth it! And then add to it the super cool CGI effects of cars and trucks turning into awesome robots who blow shit(e) up wherever they go, high intensity car chases, secret extra terrestrial code languages that are as old as mankind itself...how can I dislike all this stuff?

OK don't you dare point me to my review of ”Knowing”. It got no Megan Fox in it! Megan Fox is good. She is like KFC, finger lickin' good!
Yeah its the bike ;)
Jokes apart as I have already mentioned, I liked the movie. However I must say that the movie and the whole transformers series kind of lost its purpose and general direction of the storyline. Here we suddenly realize that transformers have been visiting earth since men was in stone age and that a "mighty epic battle" was fought back then with a "huge consequences for the mankind". Yawn! If I had a penny every time I heard that tripe.....But anyways to sum up the script - it is rubbish.

Warning spoiler alert in the next paragraph!!!

And just WTF was that bimbo in the college? Just WTF was that!? I mean suddenly we have robots that can have human bones and muscles and tissues? What is this, Terminator 4? Who came up with that stupid idea and what was the entire relevant of that sequence? If you understand it, please do come back and share your wisdom! And what was that stupditiy about that dob bot walking and running all over "extra secure" US millitary facility without focking triggering a single alarm or sensor! That dog bot is not sneaking in, no sir it is not! It is running, hopping, jumping, roaring and yet all the supposedly permiter securing sensors (including human visions) are absent? WTF?

Spoiler alert over!


Megan Fox is good. Yup I know I said it, and I know you read it, but I am saying it again and you just read it again!

I especially liked the looooooooong battle towards the end. The CGI was truly amazing. Again there were some stupid and insane moments there as well but then I think we can cut some slack here for a creative man can sometime go a bit over the top!

Verdict: For the last time Megan Fox is good. LOL! No OK seriously the movie is not brilliant in terms of story line or making sense. But it’s got some hot girls in it, lots of good CGI, no holds barred action scenes and so I would rank it as at least worth a watch once.

 

99

Posted In: , , . By John F



Title: 99
Directors: Krishna D.K. , Raj Nidimoru
Starcast: Cyrus, Kunal Khemu, Boman Irani, Mahesh Manjrekar, Soha Ali Khan, Simone Singh, Vinod Khanna
Describe the movie in one word - WhattASurprise!

My Psychobabble:
And finally it happens! One Bollywood movie which is seriously funny and surprisingly very well made. To be honest I wasn't aware of the existence of this movie. It so happened that I was chatting online with an old friend who is in India. He suggested that I get my hands on this movie and watch it. It was a lazy sunny Saturday afternoon I didn't have much to do so I thought to myself - what the hell! It surely can't be a bigger torture than Mama Mia or Bhootnath? So I hooked online, searched for this movie, found it, got it and started watching it.

Pretty soon I was rolling all over the floor laughing my humungus arse off! The movie is a gem! Forget crass humor or twisted carricatures bobbing up and down the screen trying to pretend funny. This movie has characters who are dead serious about what they are saying, mean what they are saying but are saying things so out of this world that you can not stop sniggering. Pretty soon you see them actually acting on the rubbish plans they were cooking in the previous scene and the snigger turns into a full grown laugh. Obviously in the scenes that will follow things are going to go wrong all around them which is going to put their sorry behinds in bigger troubles and you will be magically transformed into a big (well in my case "huge") floor cleaner cleaning up the dirt with your body as you roll yourself laughing!

The fun contiunes!
That said, let us dissect the different aspects of this movie. I am going to divide my opinion about actors in two parts

1. Pre watching 99 - I used to think of Cyrus as extremely genius - for a chimpanzee that is who is disguised as a human. Kunal Khemu - ummm,errr is kinda allright. The Khan girl should really go back to doing adverts for that air hostess academy. Don't get me wrong, she was rubbish there as well but at least the torture used to last for only 20 odd seconds or so.

2. Post watching 99 - Cyrus I now think is uttely stupid and ridiculous - no matter what species. Kunal Khemu - ummmm, errr is kinda good. He really needs to work on his expressions and body language though. There is remarkable improvement in the boy but a lot and I mean a LOT of work still needs to be done. To Soha - sorry to have to say this love and I never thought I would ever say to this anyone but because of the extreme and sever lack of talent cosmetic surgery is your only option if you want to stick around in the industry. Just don't go to the same doc used by Rakhi Sawant, Koena Mitra etc. OK?

Of course Boman Irani is a master actor as is Vinod Khanna. Both of them with their unique signature style of acting were rock solid foundations of the movie. Mahesh Manjerakar was a suprise! Post "Kaante" I never really liked him as an actor. But the way he has played this particular character of "AMD" in the movie does deserve applause. A new discovery for the Hindi movie industry is Amit Mistry or Mr Kuber in the movie. Lol! Kya typical character thaa yaar. That scene where he gets slapped around by Kunal Khemu is absolutely brilliant! Amit's expressions were so brilliant that I rewinded the scene twice and watched it! LOL!

Direction is obviously quite good. Again this is not Sanjay Leela Bhansali movie with exemplary directorial skills on display. What this movie is like a "Tadka Daal" in a roadside Dhaaba. Unique in its composition, perfect in its taste and hits just the right spots at just the right time.

Verdict: So to wind up, this is one of those "must watch" movies I would say. If you haven't already done so do try and take out the time to catch this one. It is much better than some of the recent titles from the industry biggies featuring industry's mega stars.

 



Title: X-Men Origins: Wolverine
Director: Gavin Hood
Runtime: 107 minutes (approx)
Starcast: Hugh Jackman, Liev Schreiber, Danny Huston, Will i Am, Lynn Collins, Taylor Kitsch,Daniel Henney, Ryan Reynolds and others

Describe the movie in one word: HOLYFOCK!


My Psychobabble: HOLYFOCK! I dont know where to begin! Personally I aint a huge fan of the X-Men series. Yes I have seen them all and yes I enjoyed each one of them but I never had the urge to artifically glue on weird twisted clothes hangar crap on the back of my palm and make weird faces while baring my teeth in a mirror. But then along comes Wolverine and there I was second time in the cinema hall looking at the back of my palm in disgust and thinking "damn it! nothing ever comes out of here"!

Looking good guys
I felt that the movie can be included in the coursebook of wanna be movie makers under the chapter titled "So this is what happens when everything goes right for a change". Every character and the actor who played that character have been simply superb. Be it a sword flinging Wade Wilson aka DeadPool (Ryan Reynolds) or tooth baring Wolverine (Hugh Jackman) or tank smashing bone crunching Fred (Kevin Durand) or metal rod twisting electric field spewing Remy LeBau (Taylor Kitsch) every one of them has actually lived their parts. Probably it is the miracle of something which is now becoming exceedingly rare - good direction. It is so rare to see a very cheesy action scene done in such tasteful way that it makes you want to take the plce of the actor. I am talking about the scene where DeadPool rages on into the room full of machine gun trotting mercenaries who open up fire on him while he rotatess his swords and simply cut the bullets off! My Indian friends would prbably start jumping up and down by now and yell "Rajnikant, Rajnikant" (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rajinikanth) but trust me guys it wasn't the same.


That scene rocked hard and it rocked so freaking hard that I could feel the reverbations in my nerves long after the guns had been silenced. Man I was wishing for someone to fire at me so that I can do the same. Obviously after about 1 second I was very thankful that the way my life goes I didn't get what I had wished for!

Awesome


The movie is full of these awesome sequences. Agreed they are far fetched, far from reality and all but to all those who bring up these concerns all I want to say is - WAKE UP YOU DODO! THIS IS A MOVIE ABOUT MEN WHO ARE UNREAL! OF COURSE THERE WILL BE UNREAL AND LARGER THAN LIFE SEQUENCES IN IT! WHAT DO YOU WANT TO SEE, WOLVERINE HELPING LOCAL TAILORS WITH HIS CLAWS STITCHING CLOTHES!?


Verdict: Long story short if you find yourself agreeing with my reviews then go and go now! I don't care what the critics say about this one. I liked it, hell I loved it! This is definitely worth the time and the money! I have been twice and most probably am going again very soon!

 

17 Again

Posted In: , . By John F



Title: 17 Again
Director: Burr Steers
Starring: Zac Efron, Matthew Perry, Thomas Lennon, Allison Miller, Sterling Knight, Brian Doyle Murray etc.
Runtime : about 100 minutes

Describe the movie in one word: WhatWasIThinking!

Plot:
See the My Psychobabble section

My Psychobabble: What a load of crap. This is the most ridiculous plot for a movie that I have come across in recent years. So here I am (I = Matthew Perry) a sad loser who hates his life, has been moaning about it for past zillion years and who has just been kicked out of the house by his wife, driving down a real sad bridge in the middle of a sad night when apparently all the inhabitants of hell above decided to get drunk collectively and urinate all over the earth. I see this old man about to jump off from the bridge into the river below. I am stupid so I stop my car and approach him to try and stop him from jumping. As soon as I reach him, he turns his head gives me a flashy grin. Suddenly there is this bolt of lightening which illuminates the scary features of his face and makes his teeth shine like those weirdoes in a very famous chewing gum advert.

He then jumps into the water. I lunge after him (why?), a vortex of mud opens in the river, sucks me in, spews me out and voila! I am 17 again (now I = Zac Efron) while the world around me remains the same!! Later my absolutely crappy weirdo star wars gobbledegook speaking excuse of a human being kind of friend tells me that I just met my "spirit guide" who wants me to walk down my "path of spirit" and basically correct something that I messed up. So here I am, enrolled in the same school where my 17 year old children go to with my daughter now getting a crush on me while I try to save my son from being bullied and at the same time trying to make my ex realize how I love her and how she loves me still.

Oh boy!



As you can see from the plot, it is not a very well thought out movie really. I bet that the creators of the movie just wanted to take Zac Efron and throw him on the big screen. They might as well have made him dance for one and a half hour or just have him stand on the screen telling knock knock jokes rather than spend all this money trying to produce this movie.

That being said, I must admit that the movie does have its interesting points. There are sequences that I am ashamed to say I almost enjoyed and laughed at. I am sure that to a certain target audience group (girls 13-17 years) the movie will seem enjoyable but to anyone outside that particular age group - not worth it. But as I say often if you have the luxury of time and some money that you literally want to throw away without feeling a pang of guilt, this movie might just be what you are looking for.



Verdict
: Unless you are a 13-17 year old girl who greets her girl friends in an almost ultra sonic shriek while throwing your hands in violent movements in the air all around you nearly blinding other people I wouldn't recommend you going to this movie. If you are girl who fits this description, I am surprised your attention span was big enough to reach till this part
and this part
and now this part
and wow this part?

 

Knowing

Posted In: , , , , , . By John F



Title: Knowing
Director: Alex Proyas
Starring: Nicolas Cage, Chandler Canterbury, Rose Byrne, D.G. Maloney, Danielle Carter
Length: about 2 hours 15 minutes.

Describe the movie in one word: Crap


Plot: In 1959 children of a real sad and lonely school in US of A come up with a brilliant idea. They all imagine how future is going to be and draw pictures of whatever they think the future will look like. These drawings are then put together in a "time capsule" (which is basically a metal case in the shape of either a malformed rocket or very sick condom) and bury that capsule in the school ground. While all students draw stuff like rockets and aliens and a museum dedicated to brains etc, one particular girl scribbles lots of random numbers on her sheet. No one understands why and the girl is portrayed as slightly mentally disturbed.
Fast forward 50 years, we have Nicolas Cage who is a professor at MIT. His son goes to the same school (God knows why) which had this wicked idea of burying that time capsule. Of course 50 years have passed and it is time to dig that capsule out and see what kids had drawn. The capsule is dug out in a ceremony and all the present school kids are handed a drawing each from the capsule. Of course Nicolas Cage's son gets the weird sheet with numbers.

Long story short, Nicolas Cage soon realizes that this seemingly random list is actually a list of dates and places (latitude and longitudes) predicting every major disaster in the world along with the death toll in that disaster. What's more there are three events which haven't happened yet and one of those events will be something major (No it’s nothing to do with G. W. Bush getting brains). He must now do all that he can to "save the world and the mankind".

Run the sky is falling!
My Psychobabble: Knowing is about crap. Where crap happens on top of more crap which all together leads to a crap mountain in which Nicolas Cage tries to ski. This triggers an avalanche of crap with Nicolas Cage trying to ride the avalanche like a horse rider but fails miserably and ends up buried in huge pile of crap which stinks so bad that the audience gets a headache.

OK I accept that the premise of the movie is good. Hell I was excited about going and watching this one. It’s got Nicolas Cage and an awesome future predicting list of numbers and cryptic codes and decryption involved. It is like high quality geek weed rolled up in a science fiction joint. What more could someone like me want!

Tangent: Booze, money, Kelly Brooks, freedom, lottery, beating my estate agent, hell beating all the estate agents, Shilpa Shetty, more booze, more money.....

Look at all the shiny balls I have!!

The movie fails miserably. The execution of what was a brilliant idea is pathetic. The CGI (computer generated imagery) is awful, the direction is horrible, the script not worth the paper it was written on and the acting - rubbish. Let us digress for a minute from these normal parameters that usually can summarize a movie and let me ask you this - how many movies can you think of where you actually noticed the background music score? One? Two? Three?

This one has such awful background music that it will scream at you and make you notice it. It is like a whinning child in a supermarket aisle. It will throw itself on the ground, yell at you, jerk its limbs in the air until you are forced to sit up and give it attention. An of course the relevance of the music is only as much as that of a whinning child in the supermarket aisle. It goes completely out of synch with the situation on the screen. You might as well have an F M Radio on and play whatever track comes on it along with the movie. Just make sure that the program on the FM radio channel is about the worst songs in the history of music.

I am not even going to count the mistakes in the movie or the sheer acts of stupidity. But to list a few

1. It is perfectly normal to blow your lawn at 4 am
2. When you want to scare someone off whom you can not see, slam your baseball bat in a tree and yell "You want some of this!"
3. You are a genius and think better when you are drunk.
4. You have to act like a total jerk and a complete jacka$$ if you have above average analytical ability.


I can go on and butcher the movie more but I am afraid I will be including spoilers if I disclose anymore about the movie.

Verdict:
Turn on your heels and run. You can do something much more worthwhile with these two hours and 15 minutes of your life (like count the grains of rice in a bag or count your own hair) than watch this movie.

 

Where am I!

By John F

Hey People!

Apologies about my absence but I have been very busy recently with lots of things happening here in my life. For starters I got myself a new job, had to buy another car and am also moving house!

I haven't been able to watch any movie for a long time but I promise to be back very soon with more irritating reviews :)

Keep checking!


 

Billu Barber

Posted In: , , , . By John F

Billu Barber
Title: Billu Barber
Director: Priyadarshan
Starring: Irfan Khan, Lara Dutta, Shahrukh Khan, Rajpal Yadav, Asrani, Om Puri
Length : about 138 minutes
Describe the movie in one word: SurprisinglyAmazing!

The Plot:
Billu (Irfan Khan) is a very poor barber in a small village Budbudiya. He is absolutely bankrupt and has no money for food, clothes, to pay his children’s school fees. His business is ruined by a new up market “hair dresser” who has just opened up shop opposite his “barber shop”. He is married to Lara Dutta who is a devoted and loving wife. Together they are somehow managing to stay alive trying to scrape whatever they can and carry on living. Despite all the hardships though Billu has a canny sense of humor which is often sarcastic owing to his current predicaments. One fine day a shooting crew lands in Budbudiya along with the news that Bollywood mega star Sahir Khan (Shah Rukh Khan) is shooting his next movie there. The whole village goes crazy. Sahir is as big in the movie as Shah Rukh is in real life. Neighboring villages come in hordes to watch Sahir in action. Sahir is hot property and everyone wants a piece of him. Amidst this madness somehow a rumor circulates that Billu is Sahir Khan’s friend. Billu constantly denies the rumor but suddenly now Billu is as good as Sahir. He is a mega star. People who normally would laugh at him, make fun of him, mock him are worshipping him. Everyone is trying to get to Sahir via Billu and is ready to pay whatever price Billu wants for it. And Billu? He just wants out of this spotlight. He is uncomfortable. He keeps on denying people but people just won’t listen. Now does Billu really know Sahir? Is it possible that a nobody poor famished barber from an unknown village has a connection with the golden boy Sahir Khan or is it just a rumor? The movie is all about what all Billu’s life goes through when Sahir Khan comes to his town.

My Psychobabble: The movie opens up with a letter sent by Billu (Irfan Khan) to a government official who approves government loans for small businesses. The government official reads that letter out aloud and guys I was sold into the movie right at the instance! I knew this is going to be a freaking good movie and so it is! To be honest I had had enough of cheap rubbish comedies that were churned out of Priyadarshan factory one after the other. Same characters, same portrayals, similar situations, hell it had started feeling like watching a big screen version of those non sense Ekta Kapoor Sas Bahu serials!

But Billu Barber my dear friends is quite a remarkable movie. Direction is pretty good. Yes there are times when the movie seems to stretch and becomes a bit boring but considering the sum of parts as a whole the movie is very well directed. The situations and characters are not out of life or irritatingly stupid morons doing all sort of caricatures and indulging in cheap vulgarities to try and make you laugh. They all seem real and the comic factor comes from their simplicity. One particular aspect of this movie that deserves a mention is the perfect balancing act of emotions that the movie delivers. You cannot help but laugh at a particular situation while feeling sorry for the poor character on whom you are laughing.

The actors, oof! Where do I begin! All of them and I mean ALL of them (yes even SRK!) have been brilliant. Irfan Khan is outperforming. Matlab ye to banda aisa jama hai is role main jaise apne politicians kursi pe jam jaate hain. It is so hard to imagine anyone but Irfan Khan in this role. He has this amazing laid back quality of dialogue delivery where he seems to be lofting his dialogues in the vacant air around him for people to look at and not listen. Simply put, Irfan Khan gets a standing ovation from moi.

Tangent: I do need to come up with more witty metaphors and similes. I have used this politician one so many times now that ironically this satire has become a politician in my own reviews that will just not go away!
Irfan Khan...the ultimate star!

Another actor who really surprised me in this movie is Lara Dutta. It was so astonishingly different to see her as a really poor married village woman who is devoid of any glamour whatsoever. She has proved that she can act and is not just a glam doll or eye candy. Yes she has come out as a very good actress indeed.

What a refreshing actress!

SRK is good. He is quite good but I reckon that is because he was portraying his real life status of a self proclaimed demi god in the movie. The guy is very good of course but as an actor he does go overboard a lot and becomes a “jhel” at times. One advise Mr. SRK – please either ask the director to not zoom the camera too much on your face or get your teeth cleaned. During the entire speech, your nicotine stained teeth were as clearly visible as the yellow grime on my bathroom floor.

Tangent: There I go again! I have given another excuse for the SRK fan brigade to diss me…darn!

SRK Looking Good
One thing that is worth mentioning here is that this is one movie after a long time which has actually utilized Rajpal Yadav and Asrani. They were both making appearances now and then in other movies but were more like mosquitoes buzzing over your ears. Irritating and something that you just wanted to get rid of and you didn’t mind accidently slapping yourself while trying to buzz them away. Not in this one though. They have not only just performed well their characters were very well written. Om Puri is a laugh riot! The moment he comes on screen you brace yourself for a bout of giggles and laughs!

Rajpal Yadav

In the end a special mention for a character who had about 10 minutes in the movie. Of these 10 minutes he gave about 6 minutes where you will laugh so hard you might end up pissing your pants. The most hillarious sequence of the movie is down to this wonderful actor. I won't reveal beyond this but trust me when it happens, you will know its happening! Kudos my man kudos!

Verdict: Go and go now. Don’t miss this movie. Yes you might not agree with my opinion that the movie is a fine piece of acting and direction but that will not prevent you from enjoying it. You might not love it but I am quite sure you will not dislike it. The money and time is worth it.

 

Luck By Chance

Posted In: , , . By John F

Title: Luck By Chance

Director: Zoya Akhtar
Starring: Rishi Kapoor, Juhi Chawla, Hrithik Roshan, Konkona Sen Sharma (Koko), Farhaan Akhtar, Dimple Kapadia, Isha Sharvani, Sanjay Kapoor
Describe the movie in one word - ZoyaWentGoaAndWroteTrashyScriptAndTriedMakingItLookGoodBYCastingGoodActorsHeHeHe!
Plot: A young actor Vikram Jai Singh (Farhan Akhtar) comes to Mumbai from Delhi to make it big in the movie industry. He has a couple of friends with whom he hangs around. Sona Mishra (Konkona Sen Sharma) is the neighbour of one of his friends. She is also a struggling actress who is waiting for her big break. They both bump into each other by chance and a friendship grows. On the other hand we have Romy Walia (Rishi Kapoor) who is a producer of some considerable repute in Bollywood and Zaffar Khan (Hrithik Roshan) who is a big Bollywood star who was launched by Romy. Romy is married to Minti (Juhi). Zaffar walks out of one of Romy's movies which was also a launchpad for Nikki Walia (Isha Sharvani) who is the daughter of Nina Walia (Dimple Kapadia) who was once a Bollywood super heroine herself. Due to a series of freak chances our Vikram Jai Singh lands in the role vacated by Zaffar. This obviously puts a strain on Vikram-Sona relationship (who still is a struggling actress by the way). Well Vikram plays Nina and Nikki both and ends up a superstar. The movie is all about these characters and their lives and how one shit leads to another shit and so on.





My Psychobabble: For a change let me start with the two good things in the movie. They are Juhi Chawla and Rishi Kapoor. Juhi is freaking awesome! She looked gorgeous, her body language perfect to the part she played and her accent and dialogue delivery was like watching a virtuoso at the peak of her performance. And Rishi Kapoor was amazing! Kya laga hai yaar banda wo producer get up main. His lose ill fitting shirt, his glamorous bling bling accesories, his often crooked eye brow, his pronounciation of "volcano" as "vulcano" and so on was just superb. These two together over shadowed the entire star cast of the movie.

Beyond them the movie is just another average mildly amusing run of the mill Bollywood movie. Matlab itni buri nahin hai but then again there is nothing spectacular or great about it. At times it appears to be dragging its feet like a completely pissed and bored child in his school assembly while at other times it looks only as alive as Inzamam-ul-haq on the running end of the wicket. Direction is OK as is the screenplay and editing. The movie often appears disjointed in its own story line if not completely broken. Best analogy would be to compare it to a handsome man who has just had a head on collision with a car. Mara nahin hai, zinda hai and you can make out that he probably looks good but his bones are dislocated and broken in places.
Tangent: Fock that was a new literary low even for me. This Xbox 360 is secretly draining out my literary powers I am sure. Grrrrr!
As for the actors. Farhan Akhtar is a write off. He looks marginally good, has a passible phsyique has voice that is permanently affected by a chronic cold and his dialogue delivery is only as exciting as watching paint dry. He has this drone of a voice which doesn't vary a fraction of an octave during his acting. No matter if he is excited, angry, pissed, sad, turned on (highly unlikely opposite Koko) he just spits out his words using the same continuous even pitch. For all I matter a ticking grandfather pendulum clock could be doing his voice over instead of him.

Konkona Sen Sharma (Koko) is a good actress. She has played good parts in her earlier movies but somehow her casting as this struggling actress in main stream commercial bollywood is not probably the best choice the casting director made.

Hrithik is but of course a marvellous actor but this time somehow wasn't on his best. But then he is Hrithik! As an actor he would out perform the best of the best on his bad day! As a hunk, well glance around and the honey eyed females in the hall speak loud enough through their lecherous stares about him ;)

Tangent: Don't freaking ask why I glance around or how can I see their expressions in the dark. Stick to the review for heaven's sake!
Isha Sharvani (Niki Walia) is a promising actress. Ab uski figure se nazar hata pata to shayad kucch review likhta but for you male members of this homo sapien species, she is a perfect eye candy (with clothes to match wink wink). And of course has acted well too (ahem). Dimple Kapadia is good. She is of course a matured actress who knows the tricks of the trade but somehow she hasn't come across as spectacularly as either Juhi or Rishi. This reminds me, there was a particular sequence where Rishi and Dimple are sitting on a couch discussing the movie they are about to make. The camera zooms into the shot from afar and you see only them together on the couch. A pounchy, curly hair Rishi Kapoor and a seemingly aged and slightly heavy Dimple Kapadia were a far cry from their raunchy and saucy performances in their youth. It was so amusing watching them together like this and thinking back on their "hum tum ek kamre main band ho" days. Sigh!
Verdict: Not a great movie but not a complete bore as well. Things could have been better but then again they could have been worse too. I would recommend watching it once but don't make any special arrangements or change your plans to fit this movie in your busy schedule. Not worth it.

 

Slumdog Millionaire

Posted In: , . By John F

The game begins!

Title:  Slumdog Millionaire

Director: Danny Boyle

Starring: Dev Patel, Anil Kapoor, Saurabh Shukla, Irfan Khan, Freida Pinto, Azharuddin Mohammed Ismail, Ayush Mahesh, Khedekar, Mahesh Manjrekar

Length: 120 minutes

Describe the movie in one word - Interesting!

Plot: Jamal Malik (Dev Patel) is a "chai waala" or a low class peon/tea distributor working in a call center in Mumbai India. As luck would have it, he makes it to the TV show "Who wants to be a millionaire" hosted by Prem Kumar (Anil Kapoor). This uneducated, low class peon somehow answers all the questions correct and wins a cool 20 million rupees! Prem Kumar has him arrested by the police on suspicion of cheating in the show. Afterall how can this uneducated nobody from the slums of Mumbai know answers to these questions which lawyers, doctors, academics struggle to answer? The police uses third degree extreme torture on Jamal to get him to confess but he sticks to his story that he knew the answers. Inspector (Irfan Khan) begins a conversation with Jamal while playing the recorded show on the TV and Jamal begins to go through the story of his life. It is during this narration of his short life story that the inspector and the audience get to know how Jamal Malik this "slumdog" from Mumbai could answer all these questions.

My Psychobabble: Let me first begin by highlighting the book this movie is based on. This book is titled "Q & A" and the author is Vikas Swaroop. I read this book back in June 2008 and though this book is no literary masterpiece it definitely is a hell of a page turner! It is a shame the movie takes so little from the book and is only half as interesting.



Now to the movie. As I described in one word the movie definitely is interesting. It keeps you glued on your screen and there are times when the sheer excitement makes you clap your hands! But sadly this suspense is more because of the game "Who wants to be a millionaire" rather than the movie itself.

Which brings me to the direction.

I know this movie has bagged numerous awards and accolades all over the world but as an Indian watching this movie (which meant I could understand all the Hindi used) I have to say "Sorry world, you are seriously daft idiots if you think this movie is well directed." There are so many bloody obvious absolutely stupid directorial mistakes that I had my mouth shaped in the form of a big "O" while I watched the movie. Let me highlight the one that I think was the most prominent

Jamal and Salim (Jamal's elder brother) are about 6 years. They have run from Mumbai and talk to each other and the others using the typical slum dialect of Hindi. They sustain themselves by selling/stealing stuff on trains. During one such heist gone wrong both of them fall from the roof of a running train. Obviously they are enveloped in a cloud of dirt and smoke and as this cloud settles down suddenly they are about 10-11 year old and are now talking to each other in English! Remember those endless 1970s movie where the lead character used to mature 15 years while running on the road from police?

Now I am not going to go knitpicking here but the movie is riddled with such stupid directorial/editorial mistakes. It appears to me that Danny Boyle gulped a cocktail of B graded bollywood movies (possibly starring Mithun Da and Shatrughan Sinha) got high, read the book "Q&A" and came up with "Slumdog Millionaire" while still on a high!
Danny..clueless in India

If this movie truly deserves awards for something, it is its music. A.R. Rahman sir you truly are a maestro. I stand and applaud you sir. As an Indian you did us all proud. Hats off to you sir, hats off to you.


The actors are all good. Of course Irfan Khan, Saurabh Shukla and Anil Kapoor are some of our finest actors and they have all played their part brilliantly. Dev Patel has looked impressive as Jamal. Freida Pinto has only been passable in her portrayel of Latika. But then she has such a small part in the movie that it is insignificant anyways. I would however like to especially draw attention to Azharuddin (youngest Jamal) and Ayush (youngest Salim). These two young boys did an absolutely marvellous job. Good work boys! Hope we get to see more of you!


Verdict: Definitely a must watch if only due to its sheer plot. However as I mentioned, don't go expecting a flawless directorial masterpiece. The movie has its glaringly obvious mistakes and moments of sheer stupidity but those will not prevent you from enjoying it. I rate it as an interesting B grade Bollywood movie at best! The simple dance sequence at the end vindicates my observation. Also as a special mention to the entire controversy generated by Mr. Amitabh Bacchan's comments, I for the record truly agree with him.

 

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Am just a spot of darkness in nothingness. You can not erase me, you can not make me darker. I will be in front of you and yet you shall not be able to spot me. Do you want to ? Do you? Then close your eyes and feel..Ssshh!! dnt speak just feel - I am the one that still breathes.