Monday, January 31, 2011

Review of 'Dil to Bachcha hai ji'

We all know that Madhur Bhandarkar is a creative genius when it comes to exposing the underbelly of urban society with deft display of irony with a dash of sly humour, which has come to become his trademark over the years. What we didn’t know is that he had the capability to extend himself to the comedy genre.

‘Dil to bachha hai ji’ is a departure from the mindless comedy that has become the USP of most bollywood directors. While it does remain a comedy, it does not ask you to leave your thinking cap at home. The film explores the range of man-woman relationships that mark modern urban existence and presents them in this film with three relatively extreme cases in point.

The film meanders along with the three concomitant stories and tries to relate them with the one word; love, and a common house. There are plenty of risqué and humorous moments along the way, many of which appear natural and hence make it a sit-com rather than a slapstick affair.

Marked by good performances by most of the actors, supported by crisp writing and barring the one odd inconsistency, the film appears credible and well worth the money. The even distribution of screen time between the actors and the one odd hummable tune keep up the tempo and make it a funny film. 3.5 STARS

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Review of the movie '127 Hours'

Reputation clearly seems to have preceded Danny Boyle at the Oscars with his ‘127 hours’ receiving four* nominations including the best actor. The film about a real life adventurer’s survival tale has been suitably humanised to avoid making it another episode of ‘Man vs Wild’.

Reality Tv and Adventure channels where the situation, however untamed, is often controlled and hence gives one the comforting knowledge that all is going to be well. The film is a departure from the stage-managed precision of these TV shows. It gets into the head of the penitent adventurer when he battles weather, fatigue and reflects upon his life’s follies as a gloomy end stares back at him from the craggy creeks.

The first half of the film gets where it is aimed at; giving the viewer the creeps, but the second half has moments of humour that are protracted a wee bit and hence let the audience heave a sigh of relief, something that has the unintended effect of driving them back into the comfort of their seats. The gory ending might be discomforting to some. The music by AR Rahman is largely on mark but some of the scenes would have been better off without music to make the setting chillingly real. Over all an outdoor adventure, that keeps the adrenalin pumping. 4.5 STARS

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Review of Dhobi Ghat(Mumbai dairies)

Having read the mixed bag of reviews of this film, I had decided to give it a miss. But Aamir had ensured that no other big releases affected chances of his better half's magnum opus and hence I had to grudgingly make it to watch this one.

Right from the outset as the credits rolled in, the movie painted itself with a poignant palette creating a fresh fresco. The parallel stories began scene after scene to stitch themselves in a telling manner as the film progressed. The characters while could have been etched better, still grow on you and soon one is absorbed in the film enough to overlook the shortfalls and be consumed by the brilliance of their screen presence.

Calling the movie subtle would be stating the obvious. The film is another in the numerous odes that the city of Mumbai has received. However, the film does that without being loud or overly partisan in its portrayal of the grime and grit of the metropolis. Technically flawless, the film plays itself out like a slow and painful melody that just manages to touch your heart. For me, it's a 4 STAR effort.