India Insight

‘Bombay Velvet’ debacle adds to Bollywood woes

May 22, 2015

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It’s being called the biggest debacle in recent Bollywood history. Anurag Kashyap’s “Bombay Velvet” could not have come at a worse time for an industry that has been struggling to find some magic at the cinemas for more than a year.

Movie Review: Piku

May 8, 2015

(Any opinions expressed here are those of the author and not of Thomson Reuters)

In Shoojit Sircar’s “Piku”, after a particularly graphic conversation about constipation and bowel movements, Rana (Irrfan Khan) asks the film’s protagonist (Deepika Padukone), “Is this all you’ll talk about?” Yes, she says.

Bollywood holds breath as Salman Khan faces jail

May 5, 2015

(UPDATE: Salman Khan sentenced to five years in prison in hit-and-run case)

A guilty verdict for Salman Khan on Wednesday in a 13-year-old hit-and-run could derail some of Bollywood’s most prized projects if India’s most bankable actor is put behind bars.

Movie Review: Gabbar is Back

May 1, 2015

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(Any opinions expressed here are those of the author and not of Thomson Reuters)

A Minute With: Radhika Apte

April 20, 2015

Ekta Kapoor once asked sardonically, “Who is Radhika Apte?” This year, Indian audiences found out.

Movie Review: Mr X (3D)

April 17, 2015

(Any opinions expressed here are those of the author and not of Thomson Reuters)

Twenty-eight years ago, there was “Mr India” – a film about an invisible man who helped bring down the bad guys. It is now 2015, and we have Vikram Bhatt‘s “Mr X“, which again is a film about an invisible man who fights crime. You would think, given how much Bollywood has progressed in the intervening years, that the 2015 film would beat the 1987 one at least on the technical aspects,  if not the creative ones.

Movie Review: Margarita, With a Straw

April 17, 2015

(Any opinions expressed here are those of the author and not of Thomson Reuters)

In Shonali Bose’s “Margarita, With a Straw”, there is a scene towards the end where the unraveling of a relationship is captured faithfully by the camera – there are accusations of betrayal, tears over what could have been, and frantic declarations of love. It is to Bose’s credit that in spite of the fact that it involves two women who are both disabled, she treats it in the same way that most films would treat a scene of this nature involving a heterosexual, abled couple.

Movie Review: Dharam Sankat Mein

April 10, 2015

(Any opinions expressed here are those of the author and not of Thomson Reuters)

If Fuwad Khan’s “Dharam Sankat Mein” is any indication, Bollywood is in the midst of a theological crossroads. It certainly is debating the idea of God with more fervour than before.

Movie Review: Detective Byomkesh Bakshy!

April 3, 2015

(Any opinions expressed here are those of the author and not of Thomson Reuters)

If beauty is skin-deep, then Dibakar Banerjee’s re-telling of Sharadindu Bandyopadhyay’s detective series set in 1943 Calcutta (now Kolkata) is beautiful.  Right from the costumes to the set design, everything is period-perfect. But the attention to detail never translates into atmosphere – that elusive element that makes for a successful whodunit film. The intrigue that is suggested through dialogue never turns into an edge-of-the-seat mystery, thanks to a shallow plot.

It was me, says Salman Khan’s driver in hit-and-run

March 30, 2015

Bollywood actor Salman Khan reacts on the green carpet in ColomboActor Salman Khan’s defence in a decade-old hit-and-run case got a significant boost on Monday after his driver testified in court that it was he, and not the Bollywood star, who was behind the wheel of an SUV that ran over people in 2002.