Bollywood and culture in an emerging India
As the end credits rolled in “Aisha”, I noticed that the credits for stylists/designers and clothes sponsors never seemed to end. That should tell you something.
This is a film that is a lot like the characters in it – very very pretty, but, as a character in the film says “very shallow”.
This is India’s first chick flick though, and even though there are holes in the script, plot points are very badly explained and Sonam Kapoor’s acting hampers the film significantly, it does tell you the story of India’s luxe set, for whom a Chanel bag is an important accessory even when you are roughing it out on the banks of the Ganges in a tent. And that isn’t necessarily a bad thing.
Sonam Kapoor plays Aisha, a ditsy, but well-meaning girl who wants to play match-maker to everyone around her. She comes across the perfect “project” in Shefali, an enthusiastic, but unsophisticated girl from a small town near Delhi, whom Aisha promises to take under her wing, and find her a “good boy.”
Milan Luthria’s “Once Upon A Time in Mumbai” is a mostly-gripping, but dumbed-down mafia thriller that focuses on two men who dominated the Mumbai underworld for the most part of the seventies and eighties.
Despite denials from the makers of the film, it is easy to see that the story is based on underworld don Haji Mastan and his one-time protégé Dawood Ibrahim.
from Photographers' Blog:
I first encountered the 52-year-old Maratha Mandir movie theater while I was on one of my walks to explore Mumbai. Being new to the city, I do this often. It was just a casual walk down the lanes of the city when I saw a huge billboard promoting a film outside the cinema. The billboard proudly advertised it as the longest-playing film in Indian history.
The film "Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge" (The Big Hearted Will Take the Bride), starring Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan, is a simple romantic film shot in Europe and India, where a boy meets a girl and falls in love with her - girl is about to get married in India - boy takes the journey from Europe to India to win her over.
There have been several films made on Kashmir and the problem of insurgency but few have managed to catch the pulse of the issue.
If you think “Lamhaa” is one of those few, then you are mistaken. As with most issue-based films, Rahul Dholakia’s “Lamhaa” tends to simplify and dumb down reality, reducing it to jingoistic dialogues and clichés, when in fact it should be exactly the other way round.
Abhishek Sharma’s “Tere Bin Laden” is a sporadically funny but badly made film that tries a little too hard to draw out laughs from the audience and fails for precisely that reason.
The plot revolves around a young Pakistani reporter Ali whose biggest dream is to go to America and make it big but after an incident on a plane involving a knife, he is deported back to his homeland.
Teen movies in Bollywood have largely been restricted to candy-floss college romance (“Ishq Vishq”) or sporting tales but “Udaan” is a teen coming-of-age tale that defies all these genres and in doing so, touches you in a way that no other film has managed to for quite some time.
The film, an official selection at this year’s Cannes festival, is at heart a simple linear film about Rohan, a 17-year-old who returns home from boarding school to a tyrannical father and a home he hasn’t seen for eight years.
Watching “Milenge Milenge” is like finishing an entire bottle of tomato ketchup. Ketchup that was manufactured a decade or two earlier. So eating it/watching this movie will ensure that a) you won’t enjoy it and b) it will be harmful to your health because the product is long past its expiry date.
This is one of those films that didn’t get released at a time when it should have — that is when Kareena Kapoor’s peroxide hair was in vogue, landlines were more in use than mobiles and sequined dresses were considered fashionable.