Its not often that one comes across a cult film, one that becomes a benchmark for filmmakers for years to come. But the funny thing about such movies is that they very rarely appeal to the masses. Dev D is one such film in which a lot of people just could not stand and others fell in love with it, including me. It is just a question of whether the sensibilities of such a film hits the right spot in your mind or not. ...
I don’t wanna get into the habit of pulling down the expectation of everyone but i don’t even wanna praise something just because its got an Oscar nomination. Having said that Slumdog by no means is a bad film. In fact its a superb film, one that takes you on a ride which is fast, crisp and exhilarating. The cast is fantastic specially the small kid who plays Jamal(junior most) along with Dev Patel and Anil Kapoor who plays the two faced host with perfection. Even the others like Irfaan Khan and Saurabh Shukla fit in very well. Also there are some scenes that will stay with you forever like the young Jamal running covered in shit to take the Big B’s autograph or the eye popping beggar scene followed by a heart wrenching chase.
However the most fantastic thing about the move is its screenplay which moves between present and past with such ease and purpose. Simon Beaufoy surely deserves the Oscar nomination and so does Chris Dickens the editor of the film for such sharp work.
Also if there is something else that is Oscar worthy it is the score by A.R. Rahman which complements the happenings of the movie phenomenally well, be it O…. Saya, Paper Planes or even Jai Ho. Its funky, peppy and very apt. A special mention for the brilliant cinematography (Oscar nominated) by Anthony Dod Mantle who captures the slum streets and brothels with utmost honesty.
So now the big question, Oscar? No. Not now, not ever. The only reason that it has reached such heights is because apart from being a good film it is directed by Danny Boyle and not Ashutosh Gowarikar or Rakesh Om Praksah Mehra. I see no reason why Slumdog can be nominated and Taare Zameen Par, Rang De Basanti and Lage Raho… can’t be.
One very important point. There is a scene where a driver beats up Jamal Junior for stealing something and Jamal tells the American couple that this is what real India is, and the American Couple say ” We will show you what real America is like” and hand over some cash. What does Danny want to prove here? That we Indians only know how to beat up and don’t have feelings? Or that Americans are so better of than Indians when it comes to forgiving someone? I really don’t know but i sure would like to ask him that.
Damn these paid previews. What they have done is changed the first day first show from Friday morning to Thursday and i suffered yesterday on account of that. I was never a fan of paid previews as i had a certain attachment to Friday. But now that people watch a movie on Thursday itself the novelty factor is gone by Friday.
This is what happened to me for the much anticipated Chandni Chowk To China. A couple of friends saw the movie day before yesterday and trashed it. So even though i knew it was gonna be bad i had no choice but to go for it as i had bought the tickets on Tuesday itself. And just when i thought it couldn’t get any worse my brother who also saw the movie with his friends on yesterday morning trashed it too and big time.
The feeling of walking towards your death is something i really don’t know how to describe. I knew i was gonna hate it, but i was also thinking that going with such a low expectation would be a good idea as i wouldn’t be as disappointed as the others. Oh how wrong i was!
I reached the theatre on time but was surprised to see a very moderate crowd, no where near a house full. So i think to myself “maybe other people also heard that the movie was bad and they were lucky enough (sensible enough, according to my mother who also suffered on my account) not to have bought the tickets already.
So now lets get to the painful part. Believe me i tried really hard to like the movie but the constant sarcastic claps from the audience didn’t really support the cause. Whether it was the stupid knife proof, bulletproof, parachute umbrella or the new i-pods used as some stupid language translators, the audience never left an opportunity go by to clap and applause the sheer stupidity of the film.
It was so unbelievable to see the sheer lack of seriousness that was clearly visible even in the intense scenes. Nikhil advani thought that if he uses all the formulae from Kung Fu to Parathe wali Gali and from a sacred warrior to Sita aur Gita he will have a hit, he couldn’t have been more wrong. And what the hell is Akshay doing? whats wrong with our self made man. I mean i am fed up of him taking his audience for granted all the time. He has seriously lost it. I was one of the people who laughed his head off on his stupid jokes but enough is enough. AK if you are listening, its time to re-invent yourself.
The only person who made the right decision by opting to do this film was Deepika. She got to do something that she wouldn’t have in any other film, kick some serious ass and be called Meow Meow(seriously) . There wasn’t much of acting but the action that she did is the best i have ever scene done by a lead actress in Bollywood.
That is about the only positive thing i can say. Music? well lets just say that i was lucky as all songs were not present in full length otherwise i wouldn’t have made it out alive. None of the songs made sense and were forced into the film (actually the entire film itself was kinda forced).
Oh yes i got another positive point. Phew!! thank god coz i was thinking that i will be getting howlers for not even having two positive points for the film( I mean one positive point per half is the least i can do). Yeah so the action, It was over the top, exaggerated, unrealistic(I mean its not Shaolin Soccer, so what was that Cosmic Kick all about?) and really boring to say the least, even in the climax. Oh shit, I am sure in my head it sounded positive. I guess i was thinking about the Gordon Liu movie which he wont be embarrassed about.
First and foremost let me just break the suspense, Ghajini is a superb film. It’s not perfect,but Aamir very much is. And so the film works not only because of Aamir but coz of various other reasons . So i will leave Aamir for now and talk more about the movie.
Ghajini starts with Aamir killing some random thug and taking his picture from his Polaroid camera which rings every fifteen minutes throughout the movie to remind him to take a pic of anything or anyone important before he forgets it. Police gets on his trail for the murder and one able police officer manages to find him only to be beaten to pulp. But before getting the dose from forgetful Dr. Aamir, he manages to find out one half of Aamir’s tragic past written in a diary.
Tracks change from serious to comic and romantic. Asin enters and just takes centre stage. She plays a simple yet happy girl who just wants three ambassador cars( no more from me about this). She is sweet, caring and full of life. Obviously Aamir falls for her after some misunderstanding . Anyway just when the love story reaches a peak, the flashback ends and the search for Ghajini starts again. You would prepare yourself self for the action but in your mind you would still be wondering about the flashback and how the story ends and how does Asin’s character Kalpana die? Well will not go deeper into the story coz i want each person to enjoy it like I did. Will jump to some technical details 🙂
The style of narration followed is a new trend in Bollywood where the movie jumps between flashback and present time just like in the movie Rock On but with lesser jumps. Camera work is spectacular specially in the song Guzarish and also in one particular fight scene towards the end where Aamir comes and lifts a person from his neck and the camera is giving the first person view so actually he is lifting the camera. The fights are well choreographed but at times feel repetitive. Still the final fight is just mind blowing and you will feel like a part of the fight.
The music by AR Rahman needless to stay is very good and is already very popular. The best song is ‘Kaise Mujhe’ which is a slow romantic song. The much awaited song ‘Latoo’ with Jiah Khan is a disappointment as it must have gotten cut during editing and rightly so. Still i would have loved to see the hot babe do what she does best, or so i have heard. The background score of the film is also a highlight. It makes the fight and the chase scenes even more thrilling and gripping.
Now coming to the cast, Asin like i said is brilliant. She is here to say and conquer for sure. Ghajini played by a goon often seen in Hindi films(sorry don’t know his name but he played the role of Sultan in Sarfarosh) is just about OK. I feel a bigger name would have been better but then again we don’t have very many villains in the industry now like the old time greats Amrish Puri and Kader Khan. Coming to Aamir. In one line he is Oh My Gawd!!! Be it the sweet romantic part or the grunting ape of a man. He has played both parts with so much perfection its a little hard to believe, just like his 8 packs. He looks very menacing in the scenes where he is angry and you really feel for him through out(even when he is throwing punches at a cop or a goon).
I also want to mention a couple of scenes where Aamir is reminded of what had happened to him and to his girlfriend. Just seeing his reaction in these scenes is paisa vasool. The best part about the movie is that it takes you in. You are in the movie all the time. Whether it is the helplessness his character feels or the urge for revenge, you feel it with him and it grows so much by the climax that you also feel like picking up a steel rod and hitting a baddy or two(I surely did).
Its an excellent movie one that should be seen for Aamir’s brilliance(and also for six different Aamirs’ in one frame), Asin’s simplicity and the sheer passion for revenge.
P.S. To all the people who think that there is only one king in Bollywood, well Aamir is the Emperor.
The Movie: 3.5/5
Aamir Khan: 4.5/5
How many times have we seen a brilliant idea or concept go to waste because it wasn’t executed well? The answer is A LOT!! But In the case of Chicken Run, the latest offering from DreamWorks Studios in collaboration with Ardman Animations there is no such problem. In fact it’s a perfect example of a good concept executed to perfection. ...