India Masala

Bollywood and culture in an emerging India

from India Insight:

Bollywood fashion at Cannes

By Arnika Thakur and Shashank Chouhan

(Any opinions expressed here are those of the authors and not necessarily of Reuters)

The image of Aishwarya Rai in a striking yellow sari with lots of gold jewellery walking the red carpet at Cannes 2002 is one that a generation of Indian movie fans may not forget.

Few Indians were familiar with Cannes until the actress made an appearance on the French Riviera. Not only did Rai introduce fans back home to the world’s leading cinema showcase, she also made global audiences take note of Bollywood. This year, the 66th Cannes festival is showcasing India as a guest country to mark the centenary of its film industry.

Celebrities such as Sonam Kapoor, Mallika Sherawat, Nawazuddin Siddiqui, Frieda Pinto and Amitabh Bachchan made an appearance - and had to step up their fashion game.

Gippi: The pains of growing up

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

Handout still from "Gippi"Sonam Nair’s “Gippi” is the coming-of-age tale of a teenage girl who stumbles through life dealing with the typical crises of adolescence. Boys, parents, body image, acne and Shammi Kapoor come together to form the crux of this story, one that was probably written with the help of a handbook on how to script a teen movie.

Go Goa Gone: Die laughing

Photo

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

A handout still from "Go Goa Gone".To enjoy Raj Nidimoru and Krishna DK‘s “Go Goa Gone“, you have to ignore the tacky effects and the bad make-up and concentrate on the wisecracks and repartee between the main characters. Once you’ve done that successfully, get ready to buckle in for what is an unexpectedly fun ride.

from India Insight:

Celebrities and their favourite Indian films

As India celebrates 100 years of cinema, we asked celebrities to name their favourite Indian film. It was a tough choice. After all, there are tens of thousands of films to choose from. How could they select only one? In the end, all our respondents sent in several choices, unable to pinpoint the one Indian film they thought was the best.

Fashion designer Ritu Kumar was closest to the brief, naming just two personal favourites. Her choices: "Umrao Jaan" and "Mughal-E-Azam". Both films were in her words “classical for music, costumes and ethos.”

Bombay Talkies: The magic of celluloid

Photo

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

A five-minute scene, sans dialogue, just before the interval. A shot of a man elated, reliving his magical day as the rest of the world goes about its own business – these five minutes alone make “Bombay Talkies” worth a watch.

from India Insight:

Which is the greatest Bollywood film ever?

It's been a hundred years since the first Indian feature film "Raja Harishchandra" in 1913. Since then, Bollywood has made tens of thousands of films – good, bad and middling.

Tell us the movie that you feel is Bollywood's best. To help you make that choice, we have compiled a list of 100 films we have seen and loved, films that are sensitive and sensible in their own way and films that brought ‘larger than life’ into our living rooms.

Aashiqui 2: Tuneless tale

Photo

Mohit Suri may have done the impossible and crammed every single romantic movie cliché in “Aashiqui 2”. There are traces of the 1973 hit “Abhimaan” along with the original “Aashiqui” (1990). Director Suri tries to inject an intense vibe in his new film, but fails miserably.

Rahul Jaykar (Aditya Roy Kapoor), a rock star who is slowly slipping away into oblivion thanks to his alcoholism, spots Aarohi (Shraddha Kapoor) singing in a Goan bar. One look and he is smitten, convinced of her talent and ready to take her to Mumbai to make her a star.

Ek Thi Daayan: It’s the witching hour

Photo

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

At the end of the first half of Kannan Iyer’s “Ek Thi Daayan”, you may be forgiven for harbouring an unnatural dread of elevators or old abandoned buildings. Except for a few scenes, director Iyer keeps you on the edge of your seat with the spectre of a witch seen through the eyes of a child.

Commando: For diehard action fans

Photo

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

An Indian Army officer crashes his helicopter into Chinese territory and is subjected to third degree torture. But Karanvir Dogra aka Commando doesn’t let slip any secrets.

Nautanki Saala: A comedy of errors

Photo

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

The best scenes in Rohan Sippy‘s “Nautanki Saala” (adapted from French comedy Apres Vous) are the ones where there is no woman or romance involved. Male leads Ayushmann Khurrana and Kunaal Roy Kapoor have a good chemistry going and their humour is quirky and whacky, but funny all the same. The problem in their lives, and in the film, starts when the woman arrives on the scene.

  •