India Masala

Jab Tak Hai Jaan: Unending romance

November 13, 2012

It is difficult to judge “Jab Tak Hai Jaan” solely as a movie. Like it or not, it is the swansong of one of the defining directors of the Indian film industry and you cannot help but think of Yash Chopra’s legacy as you watch his last film.

Son of Sardaar: Calculated entertainment

November 13, 2012

In a recent interview, a film-maker described a movie as one “made with a calculator”. He might just have been talking about Ashwni Dhir’s “Son of Sardaar”. For a film that talks of heart and emotion, this is a movie made with cold-hearted calculation.

Luv Shuv Tey Chicken Khurana: A dish with heart

November 2, 2012

The Punjabisation of  Bollywood has meant that on-screen depictions show a very polished version of Punjab. Fluttering dupattas, lush fields, glitzy weddings and lively dancing are what Punjab is all about, but Sameer Sharma’s “Luv Shuv Tey Chicken Khurana” doesn’t stick to any of the stereotypes, which is a relief.

Jaspal Bhatti: Sardar of satire

October 25, 2012

How do you satirise an issue without hurting someone’s ego but at the same time ensure it hits its mark? Jaspal Bhatti, arguably the only man to have known the answer in India, at least enough to make a living out of it, is no more.

Chakravyuh: Cliched and clunky

October 24, 2012

I have suspected it for a while now and I’m afraid it might be true. Film-maker Prakash Jha is well on his way to becoming the Madhur Bhandarkar of political films.

Yash Chopra, so much more than romance

October 22, 2012

My very first Yash Chopra film was a disappointment.

I remember watching “Lamhe” as a kid, almost without blinking, on a grainy television screen on a newfangled device called the VCR and thinking to myself, what is this story about? To my young mind, it didn’t make much sense. But the memory of “Lamhe” and that lazy summer afternoon I watched it with my cousins is still vividly etched.

Student of the Year: Bromance, brawn and not too much brain

October 19, 2012

Is it possible for a film-maker to regress with each film? Wouldn’t logic dictate that you learn and therefore progress with each film? But Karan Johar, who otherwise comes across as one of the most savvy, intelligent and knowledgeable people in the industry, doesn’t seem to apply that same logic to his films.

Bhoot Returns – That’s not the spirit

October 12, 2012

I remember watching Ram Gopal Varma’s “Bhoot” in 2003 in a movie hall in Delhi. Or rather, I remember trying not to watch it. Most of the time, I had my face in my hands and had shielded my eyes because I was just plain scared.

Aiyyaa: Theatre of the absurd

October 12, 2012

Director Sachin Kundalkar’s “Aiyyaa” is based on one of three stories in his earlier Marathi film called “Gandha”. The story, about a girl who falls in love with a man because of the way he smells, is 30 minutes long, simply and honestly told. There are are no frills, no side characters and certainly no sign of any of the absurdity that Kundalkar brings to “Aiyyaa”.

The phenomenon called Amitabh Bachchan

October 11, 2012

Twitter is abuzz with the spirit of festivity, and here’s why: It is Amitabh Bachchan’s 70th birthday.