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3 Idiots (2009)
27 out of 54 people found the following review useful:
idiots...a lot of idiots, 22 July 2010

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I am writing this very late, even though I saw the movie on the first day…it took a second fast-forward viewing on my laptop to compel me to opine on this film. And since brushing through the comments, I found a lot of good stuff written about it, I'd like to skip over the brownie points the film certainly deserves and focus on what I found so…disappointing.

1) sigh, the jokes…what to say, I actually felt embarrassed listening to them and hear people guffaw on stuff that evoked chuckles in the 70s. 2) over the top scenes which were just not required- Rancho taking a bath in the garden(!) in front of everyone? In most good institutes even walking on the grass is frowned upon…n here this chap doesn't mind spoiling the soil with his soapy water. (This is what annoys me about characters portrayed as non-conformists. They confuse it with plain indecency and ludicrousness, like when Patch Adams bared his bottom after getting his degree); n driving the scooter into the hospital itself…why couldn't he just stop at the doorway n make it a genuinely good shot??? 3) The timeline was all wrong; did no one do math at primary school? Farhan says they hadn't seen rancho for 5 yrs…ramalingam returns after 10 yrs to keep the bet…no one saw rancho after college finished…engineering is 4 yrs…the bet could not have been made before the second semester as they already have had at least one semester exams!!! Simple math will tell you its all goofed up. Kareena kapoor was engaged when these guys were in 1st-2nd year…so she waited 8 years to get married??? If that banker guy was so considerate and patient, he is the real hero 4) Anybody who has lived in hostel with room mates will tell you that in 4 yrs together, you get to know every minute detail about you buddies; these guys didn't even know rancho's hometown! 5) And these supposedly bright engineers and the doctor Kareena don't have even enough brains to look up the college records to find Rancho's address? They could have at least asked Boman Irani, who would have certainly known it considering he knew Chachad's monthly income! 6) Even with that lame, copied joke 'Do you know who I am', they are just ridiculing their own film; is it so difficult for a professor to find three students of a class whose faces he has seen from the college records? A cheeky antic like that would have meant instant suspension in a real IIT. 7) Hirani's idea of ragging is based on the fairy tales boys brag to wide-eyed fifth-graders; you just cant survive in a hostel if you electrocute a senior's winkie on you first day. I'd have loved it had they shown Rancho getting a beating from seniors in return for his actions…it would have truly highlighted the ragging problem. Instead they showed the whole bunch of seniors running scared on seeing a baby-faced fresher with a live wire. 8) And oh, they took the peeing joke too far, too many times…its disgusting. Ramalingam, a VP of some MNC peeing on a school building? Come on… 9) I understand that the ridiculous arrangement barred Rancho from keeping in touch with any student from ICS…but what about Kareena? Was his love so shallow he didn't give a damn about her just to honor some crazy vow which didn't even involve her? How are they showing Indian women? She has no self-respect? She runs away from her wedding, betraying a guy who waited 10 years for her to a guy who left her in a heartbeat? And is it unnatural or materialistic to scream if someone spoils your 2 lac wedding dress or loses a 3 lac watch??? Again the problem with execution of an idea; there were a thousand better ways to expose that guy's shallowness…but all what rancho and his pals did was irritate him by damaging his property. 10) And the law breaking, which when done with timing looks good was just taken too far…getting an international flight stopped, fooling a taxi driver who'd probably lose his job, leaking university paper- they are criminal offenses-why do you need to portray new age thinking with a disdain for the law? 11) And finally even if we forget the fact that any decent college has a medical attendant, a health centre and generators always present to accord a movie a spicy climax, hirani spoilt it with the all-is-well cliché. Cant just one thing be normal?

2 out of 6 people found the following review useful:
Fool Mental Jackrabbit, 23 June 2010

Since i am quite young, and consequently new to the domain of movies pre-1990 era, IMDb serves as my catalogue for catching up on all the masterpieces. so it was with quite a lot of expectation that i watched FMJ, in-spite of being shockingly disappointed earlier with A clockwork orange and 2001. Kubrick's work to me is...dysfunctional.

I am a real admirer of artistic direction and deep, intriguing story lines with philosophical connotations, but i also firmly believe that every movie should be entertaining, be it at a superficial, sensual, intellectual or emotional level. Sadly, FMJ is none; just a collection of distraught, disturbing scenes that display a reptilian, hollow way of movie direction.

the first half of the movie, that primarily focuses on the android-like training of the marines, would have been effective had it been juxtaposed with the usual camaraderie and banter of the trainees (like in Band of Brothers). it was creepily unnerving to see and hear joker, pyle and company talk to each other like they were from different solar systems. i've never been to military training camps, but surely soldiers everywhere develop affectionate rapports with their colleagues, right? then we switch over to a make-do Vietnam where the movie gets even shabbier. the fighting scenes look like enacted in a theater (slow motions groans and blood spill), the dialogs seem to have been scripted by arnold, stallone and vin diesel and the storyline seems like a headless chicken, going nowhere and painfully bleeding to death. What kind of a person in his senses would walk onto the war-front, with a peace symbol and a gory message printed on his helmet at the same time, and then expect to justify himself by explaining Jungian philosophy to ticked off soldiers? enough said. time to put a FMJ in the original reels of this nonsense.

0 out of 1 people found the following review useful:
Seven Sounds...of boredom., 10 December 2009

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This movie epitomizes what Will Smith has slowly become- A transgressor of good themes. Just like in I am Legend and Hancock, a theme with amazing potential is dealt with in such a highhanded, absurdly depressing fashion that it leaves you wondering about Smith's psyche. Compare him to someone like DiCaprio, a lot of whose movies also end with his death but they sync with the script! Whereas with Smith, it's just his personal, arrogant tryst with "acting".

Seven Pounds has no body of logic, pun intended. Ben's method of choosing deserving recipients is idiotic. He chooses Ezra because he is slow to anger? WTF. What he really wanted was a jelly willed person who'd swallow a loadful of insults with a smile. Does that make a person good? Was Ezra not retaliating because he had a inferiority complex and fear of being hounded by a lunatic, or because he truly didn't mind the vilification? And apart from Dawson, there is no time given to show Ben's interaction with the rest of his beneficiaries. It's not clearly shown how Ben's brother receives his lung, and who gets the liver, bone marrow and kidney. I had to read the FAQ section on IMDb to get it straight. And he chose the Hispanic women because she was too proud to ask for help? My impression was that she was just scared out of her wits. The only creditable part of the whole slow-motion pseudo film-noire montage was the chemistry between Smith and Dawson. She was convincing in her portrayal of a sub-urban, lonely woman with a weak heart.

Ben however, came across as a very irritated, egoistical man who'd find it really tough to garner any sympathy from the audience. His was of redeeming himself for accidentally killing seven persons is a laughable short cut to get rid of his guilt. Being a fairly healthy, young man, he could have donated his body organs at the end of his natural life and still saved quite a few people. What you'd expect him to do is to do something for the unprivileged people throughout his life, thus really making atoning for his carelessness while driving. Especially since he was a MIT engineer with a bright career and money, there were a thousand ways he could have done so much more, like sponsoring/adopting needy children or setting up schools in sub-Saharan Africa and so forth. However, what he does do is donate his seaside mansion to an abused wife and her two kids; a place that could have catered to fifty kids if turned into an orphanage. Even if he was hell-bent on helping the Hispanic, could he not just have disposed her junky boyfriend? He was anyway going to suicide, so why not take a few bad guys with him? And making out with Dawson when she had a weak heart was akin to a homicide. Maybe the self-loathing chap wanted a last hurrah before going out. And where did he get a poisonous jellyfish? Besides, the poison would have made his heart useless anyway. Not to mention the danger posed to paramedics who'd have hauled him out of the iced water tub. His warning note wouldn't be of much help as any medic would first attend to a body rather than read notes.

And worst of all, the poor Dawson has to live the guilt all her life because he made double sure everyone knew what he had done.

funny attempt at creating a new genre- school rock, 6 October 2009

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

School of rock is in the end, a simplistic comedy movie and should be judged in that light. So I tried to ignore the logical bypasses in it, and after that it came out as a nice, clean entertainer. I felt the film seems funnier while watching than if you think about it after it ends. Jack Black brings a certain comic timing to it that makes you tickle, inspite of all his 'overacting' in parts.

The movie deserves credit for the concept, cast selection and situational humor. Also, in this age of cheap pop music, a little passionate infusion of Rock culture is a welcome change. The kids did a fine job considering their ages and the limited scope and screenspace presented to them, as Black dominated the movie quite thoroughly. The bottled-up principal and Black's room mates were fine too. The parents though, could have been better than the headless chickens shown.

As for the drawbacks, I found several though some might be overlooked in the movie's genre. Black comes across as a non conformist with his aversion to dieting, drugs, girls and rest of the habits dogging most rock wannabes. However, some of his takes on Rock music are so cliché' it's difficult to accept his credibility as a free-thinking musician. The over-the-top antics on solos, diving in the crowd, praying to some rock god, driving a junky wagon are just the sort of stupid conformism he fights against. While he dresses in a school uniform for the concert, the rest of the kids are in some alternate, disjointed clothing and sporting crazy hairdos disputing the very theme of the movie- That you don't need to be a freak and lead an unhealthy lifestyle to be a rock artist. Also the slanders to classical music were uncalled for; the very reason that those kids were able to pick up rock instruments so fast was because of their training in classical. Ahem, they could have made someone else sing the songs…Jack was really ordinary in the concert.

But yes, if taken in a light hearted way, the movie was a genuine entertainer and well worth a watch.

Kaminey (2009)
0 out of 1 people found the following review useful:
Kaminey...the rascals are here!, 24 August 2009

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

At first when I heard the title 'Kami**y', I thought it was kept for its eye catching appeal. I mean, I couldn't remember a single Bollywood movie which had kept a swear word for a title. Then I saw it…oh yes, it fits it perfectly! The best thing about the movie is that it doesn't focus on any lead character; its not about the stammering Guddu who is thumped throughout by everyone and who doesn't bat an eyelid before choosing his wife over his brother; its not about Priyanka who is bold enough about her knowledge of "home science", is cool about abortion and even shooting her sly brother when irritated enough. And it's not even about Charlie, whose greed doesn't abandon him till the very end, even after he is shot; mercifully there was no cliché 'bad guy giving up a shady life eventually' scenario here. And that is how it is in reality- morals hardly ever substitute for money.

And thus the movie is actually about the kami**y, the cold blooded men who do anything for the two driving engines of ambition- power and money. The movie commendably manages to bring together the baddies from all facets of society; from the sophisticated Bengali bookies to the jingoistic, vituperative local goons wannabe politicians to the ruthless underworld to the blatantly corrupt underbelly of the police. Even a few foreign drug peddlers thrown in for good measure! The end is gory and satirical, with shades of Enemy of the State. Add to this the jagged, raw music reminiscent of Pulp Fiction, dark humor that often has you in splits and the style of narration, which makes you think rather than being spoon fed the plot and what we have is another masterpiece after Omkara.

Its tough to find fault with a gem like this but perhaps the only area that lacked conviction was the appearance of the mafia in the enemy's lair with their guns not drawn and just half a dozen men. Not surprisingly, it does little to mar the beauty of it all. A must watch!

5 out of 7 people found the following review useful:
The bore u to death, 18 August 2009

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

a lots been written already, and satisfactorily its mostly bad so i'd like to just add a few points that make this movie so disgustingly lame.

1) Freeman shoves the billionaire's son in front of a speeding vehicle to kill him in broad daylight...for a secretive man he doesn't give much thought to neighbors, passerby or the motorist reporting him.

2) he takes a team of 4 military men to snipe an old goat whose supposed to be attending his son's funeral including a field tracker so you'd think getting at the target would be more difficult than shooting him from behind a bush.

3) the marshals escort Freeman in a car which doesn't even have bulletproof glass n fall for the pre-historic trick of faking a roadblock. Their captain even tells his man to go help the road blockers as if they were out on a picnic.

4)freeman didn't seem all too wet after coming out of the river. Then cusack decides to risk his son's life just cuz his ego was taunted by freeman? 5) the bad guys say that by morning every cop in the state would be after them...but all we see was the three dysfunctional feds, two fat cops and two paramedics in a copter! 6) the shooting is awful..really pathetic and the only thing that sucks more is the goofy romance shown between cusack and the girl...

7) lastly there is no state alert for freeman n he rents a room at a motel, places the kid in it n then gets a sniper gun and is at the graveyard. the sniper, getting paid half a million!, misses again and is mercifully killed. Freeman doesn't even ask him who hired him. Very professional, all of it.

i think its Freeman's worst yet...truly terrible

5 out of 8 people found the following review useful:
Astro...NOT Farmer, 17 August 2009

I believe the people are getting way too generous to be giving this piece of Ranch Junk a rating of over six! Those of u who have been lucky enough not to watch this till now and are craving for a "Pursue ur Dreams and don't give up hope" sort of cinema, watch October Sky. You'll get more than your money's worth.

A movie like this works when you can identify with the aspirations of the lead and sympathies with his limitations and difficulties faced in achieving them. I doubt anyone other than a sadist can do all this with Farmer. I mean, how deranged and cold blooded can a man be? First, he spends all his time and money building a rocket out of junk (SwatKATs anyone?), bringing his family to bankruptcy. Second, he pulls his baby daughters out of school so he can teach them science (and make them bring him food n praise his tin can incidentally). Third, he makes his 15 yr old bald son controller of his mission, a work that's usually done by people double PHd in aeronautics or its like...Fourth, he decides to launch his rocket out of his barn, as if that wont incinerate his the damn barn, his house, ranch, his cattle and his family who watch from a few meters away from a rickety trailer! Hold on, in his first attempt he did it while his wife was snoozing, giving her a wake up call with shattering window glass as he took off! Fourth, he buys a joyride for his kids, when he is going bankrupt..and when his very understanding wife points out they are running out of money to buy even food, he goes hysterical howling about there being enough food by tearing a carton full of canned food. Next, his wife makes a silvery space suit for him as if he was going in a costume party. And yeah, he reenters the atmosphere suddenly being off course and lands almost in his backyard...and all these years the poor NASA had to launch aircraft carriers in 1000 or so square mile radius to find earlier astronauts. And lastly, he refuses an offer by bruce willis to go to space in a NASa shuttle cuz of his weird ego, risking his family no probs! Man, i think they should have named the movie "The Astronaut Joker", so at least it would have justified all this dark comedy.

9 out of 10 people found the following review useful:
Prison Break when it started...but now, give me a break, 16 February 2009

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

The series is undoubtedly one of the best in terms of storyline, acting and cinematography. A lot of the positives however have already been mentioned by other people here, so I'd mention some of the flaws I've observed.

1) Michael plans everything out, except for disguising himself and his brother after they break out. They occasionally walk around with caps and shades, but honestly he could have at least come up with wigs, beards or colored contact lenses.

2) Teabag seems to be invincible. You chop his hand off, and he manages to carry it all night to a vet and get it reattached without even taking anesthetics! With that kind of a blood loss and pain, i dunno if anyone can keep conscious for more than a few hours. You torture him, ripping his stitches n all, and he manages to actually detach his hand off n escape!Pin his hand to the floor with a knife, or beat him black and blue, he is healed and active in no time...way to go.

3) US prison guards are one heck of a trained unit! A guy with a severed hand manages to stumble to freedom under their noses when they had cordoned off the area and had sniffer dogs hounding the countryside( the smell of his dripping blood should have had dogs tearing after him). A bunch of exhausted outlaws manage to outrun them, after they had missed their plane and were just a couple of hundred meters ahead of them! Next, Bellick can't even take a shot at Michael, who was hanging from a train and was not more than 10 meters away.

4) The Panamanian general was so stupid as to go arresting organized criminals with a couple of lazy soldiers? How can Whistler live in a wall in a smelly sewer, eating raw rats for weeks n still emerge out looking so normal? Most people would have been driven insane, looked underfed and would be riddled with diseases...but he looked in prime health. Some stamina, mate! 5)Mahone, with all his wit n cunning, could not have faked the encounter of that 'baseball card thief' any worse. I mean, he was wicked enough with Abruzzi and the retarded guy, so how come he shot the kid in a manner even a school boy would not take be genuine? 6)The manner in which Mahone n Schofield managed to go in and retrieve the computer guy's device from a high security premise was laughable...What kind of professionals fall for the age old trick of false alarm n all abandoning of posts to check it out? 7) How can a MNC like Gate not have photo record of one of it's employee?If Teabag can pose as an award winning salesman in US where his posters r all over the place , then its really a cause of worry for homeland security, huh!

"Heroes" (2006/II)
18 out of 27 people found the following review useful:
Heroes or Zeroes?, 9 February 2009

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

The problem with superheroes is that they never use their powers intelligently, the exception being Batman who incidentally doesn't have a supernatural ability anyway.

With Heroes, the problem gets worse. For not only are the characters perpetually confused about their abilities, even when they do manage to use them it doesn't look spectacular (their de-facto saving grace). Its amazing how none of them try to explore the extent of their powers by practicing in free time but are totally engrossed in the tragedy of their everyday lives as if having special powers was just a Sunday hobby. Along the way, logic is given the bypass and the screen play is erratic, mostly leading to anti-climatic endings. I'll assess some of the main characters here- The main protagonist is Peter Petrelli, and he not only absorbs everyone's ability, but also their idiocy. His brain becomes increasingly dysfunctional with every episode, and he looks more and more bewildered and retarded with every power he absorbs. His trademark expression is the one u see on a guy after he is slapped within an inch of his life. He is taught to control his powers by an invisible tramp in Batman Begins style( during his time with The League of shadows),but looks too rushed n unconvincing. He absorbed a host of abilities from Sylar apart from telekinesis like freezing, hearing, liquidation of metal n sylar's own ability to know how things worked but never ever uses them. there is also no mention of what abilities he picked up from Deveaux n his own mother n father...At the end of season one, he doesn't use his ability of time travel or flying when about to explode, n has to rely of his brother to scoot him off into the sky to save the day. Its amazing how his bro, keeping so aloof from his ability is able to use it so much better than the ever trying Peter. By the way, did no one is US question when a nuclear explosion happened over New York? 'Save the cheerleader, save the world'?honestly, it could not be lamer than this. Her story is the most irritating of all, for inspite of being given lot of screen space, her character doesn't evolve. Every scene with her has to end with her dad hugging her(Claire-bear?) n planting a kiss on her head, so much so that the series appear to be a tributary to the never ending pathos of a father who has a teenage daughter. One would have thought that at the point where Noah fakes her escape by taking a bullet n getting his memory erased would put an end to the melodrama n we'd c a new, tough claire emerge...but no..the dad made a return..only to be shot in the head n just when we again started to get our hopes up...alas, he is brought back to life to torment us with his whining( He cares for his son a tad more than he does for Mr.Muggles). The injuries she self inflicts continuously r random n psychotic, n after 2 seasons n hours of screen time, we end up seeing her making a video of herself again...trying to come in front of a train! What the hell is that for?Who cares how mangled she can become? Then we have doctor Mohinder, who speaks with a fake British accent n is easily the clown of the show. 1) He speaks in English with his father, mother, friends, colleagues n even street urchins, all of whom are Indians, rather than in his native Tamil or at least Hindi!When they can show Hiro speaking in Japanese, Maya in Spanish...then why the exception for Indians? 2) From what angle does Prof. Suresh look like Mohinder's dad? 3)How did he manage to get a license to drive a taxi in New York just like that? 4)How can he put his work on the properties of Claire's blood on the internet n the company do nothing about it? 5) why is a metropolis like Madras( n incidentally a Tamilian will pronounce it as Chennai for sure) be shown to be a village? 6)Evolution is cited to be the reason for the special powers...well, then how can abilities of people like Micah be accounted for? Mother nature knows about existence of computers? or of the guy who can turn metal into gold...nature wants to make some people rich through evolution? There was too much delving on the personal life of Parkman...heck, who cares about his stupid wife? Sylar collects abilities but likes to use only telekinesis, in a Star Wars fashion too. Blonds can sneak upon him inspite of his advanced hearing, he cant take a scissor away from his 70 something mother without stabbing her with it n a boy can run him through with a sword, even when he saw him coming. And how did he manage to crawl all the way from the middle of a dense jungle into US in season 2? Hiro had acted well for most part, but u gotta say that with ability like his..u don't need anyone else to save the world..all u need to do is stop time n chop all bad guys' head off, right? Err...Wasn't the space-time continuum broken when he went back to past to warn Peter about saving the cheerleader n new york didn't explode? It was definitely more important a change then if he would have saved his father...N how lame is practicing sword fighting for half a day in a storeroom n coming out ready for battle?? i guess i can go on rambling...but have to say...Heroes turned out to be big zeroes...

Ghajini (2008)
6 out of 13 people found the following review useful:
Aamir not at his best..., 5 January 2009

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

For the past 10 years Aamir Khan (AK) has been the torchbearer of Bollywood, often saving it from becoming the laughing stock of the film fraternity, which regrettably it threatens to ever so often by relying on sheer star power and publicity to get senseless movies to top the Box Office (read OSO and RNBDJ). His films generate curiosity which is unprecedented, the build up to the release often like the lull before the big storm. Sadly, with Ghajini the storm never arrived.

Aamir has well earned the tag of Perfectionist, but this film ridicules the very same, even keeping in mind that he had given the director a free reign to make this 'fantasy'. The film, in lieu with Sanjay Singhania is beefed up with flaws, some so obvious that even the license of a fantasy shouldn't excuse for them. The inspector doesn't think of taking any constabulary or backup with him while waiting for AK to show up in the bus, he doesn't plant a cop on the bus nor does he notice AK getting off it though he was chasing it with a clear view. Then in true South Indian fashion, he goes to arrest AK solo and unarmed, in the end resolving to smash him with a baseball bat...thats police procedure for u. AK leaves his fingerprints on everything concievable, never hides his face or name and address nor does he even believe in locking his flats' doors...just goes on a killing rampage that goes unnoticed.

Ghajini is head of a pharma major, yet struts around with street loafers and strongmen without arousing suspicion. When AK kills his man in the parking lot, his croons descend on him firing bullets, yet don't give a chase when he disappears around a pillar! Ghajini sports a switch on/off haryanvi accent, yet dresses in South Indian fashion for the most part and is perpetually in his 'factory' with his croons when shown at work. Is he head or sales manager? even though he has a laughable army of thugs to do his dirty work, he openly hounds his victims, killing them brutally without fear of arrests or suspicion of his involvement. And yet he is shown to be concerned his name would be dragged if his men shot a drugged AK, and rather decides to turn him into a 'vegetable'. Someone should have told him that the kind of arrangement AK had made originally, he could have done it again too. And when he finally decides to wait for AK to show up for the finale, he chooses a slum to be his den and arms his men with the toolbox ( hammer, rods, axes, logs etc)to fight. What happened to the pistols they were brandishing throughout the movie? Surely, it would be a much safer option against a pumped up monster? Even the fabled ghajini himself doesn't even carry a about love of the gore.

Asin was really refreshing and held up well against a charming AK..yet was essentially thick as a Big Mac. She roamed around with him for over an year, yet never noticed his very obviously expensive Van Huesen apparel, his expensive shoes, watch, goggles, cellphone....? And if u converse for over an year with a Harvard educated bloke, is it possible to confuse him with a broke, struggling actor? Did she never notice his credit cards, never asked about his work, about his background...? surely a girl does that to a guy she is going out with and agrees to marry. What the heck, she never even inquires where he lives.

And how come she kept bagging advertisements, when AK proved not to be beneficial at all to her ad firm. And Sanjay Singhania was surely no Dark Lord or Voldemort who kept his face why the hell did no one ever see through Sachin?

Jiah Khan didn't look bright enough to be a medical student, especially after the way she waded through Ak's carnage in the slum to keep a tab on his destruction after having read how brutal Ghajini can be...what kind of girl is not freaked out by a guy who plays hockey with 6 inch thick metal pipes and live human heads for balls?

The movie would have been far more interesting had the director shown how AK started out after Asin dies and he received head injuries...glimpses of how he builds up his physique, collects info on the crooks and adjusts to his wretched lifestyle would have been nice. They never show how he gets to eat...also, beefing up muscles is one thing...but becoming a street fighter another. They never show how he trains to fight....some of his moves were from the olympic wrestler's dictionary.

Well...overall it is a good masala timepass flick...but fell way short of the expectations from Mr.Khan.

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