India Insight

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.

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: Hunterrr

March 20, 2015

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

The protagonist in Harshavardhan Kulkarni’s “Hunterrr” (the tacky title is a product of Bollywood’s propensity to fiddle with spellings) is instantly recognizable. Mandar Ponkshe is someone we’ve all met, or been, at some point in life. He’s the guy who ogles at every passing woman, the man who brushes against a woman’s posterior in a crowded market, or stares at a nurse who is treating his sick friend.

Movie Review: Ab Tak Chhappan 2

February 27, 2015

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

Shimit Amin’s “Ab Tak Chhappan” (“56 So Far”, which refers to the number of gangsters the protagonist has killed) was a slick film about an encounter cop with a heart of gold. Aejaz Gulab’s sequel to the 2004 police drama takes away all the good qualities but retains the film-making style of the original film’s producer Ram Gopal Varma – streaky shots, contorted camera angles, and ear-shattering background music.

Movie Review – MSG: The Messenger of God

February 13, 2015

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

Watching most Bollywood movies calls for a healthy suspension of disbelief, but if you dare make the trip to see the wonder that is “MSG: The Messenger of God”, make sure to leave behind every ounce of common sense or sanity that you possess, and submit yourself to the events unfolding on screen.

Movie Review: Shamitabh

February 6, 2015

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

Every director has his muse. Farah Khan has Shah Rukh Khan, Ayan Mukerji has Ranbir Kapoor, and R Balki has Amitabh Bachchan. The one actor they admire so much that, at times, their films are nothing more than a simpering tribute to their favourite artist.

Movie Review: Hawaizaada

January 30, 2015

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

At first glance, Vibhu Puri’sHawaizaada” (“Prince of the air”) looks like it’s been made from the leftover set pieces of a Sanjay Leela Bhansali film. You are treated to opulent mansions, cobbled streets and raindrops falling in slow motion. While they make for great visuals, they don’t really help the story.

Movie Review: Rahasya

January 30, 2015

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

Manish Gupta’sRahasya” (mystery) might be in the news for being loosely based on the Aarushi Talwar double murder case, but other than a few cosmetic details, the film is more of an ode to “Queen of Crime” Agatha Christie.