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OMKARA.....A Brilliant movie
When someone makes an adaptation of one of the greatest Shakespearan tragedies, you have to stand up and take notice. And especially Vishal Bhardwaj, someone who had made Maqbool the toast of the festival circuit and on par with some of Kurosawa's best work. Akira Kurosawa, one of the best directors the world has ever seen, has made quite a few Shakespearean stories brilliantly( See Throne of blood, Ran).
Vishal Bhardwaj has again changed the setting to the underworld, this time in rural India...more precisely UP. Naseeruddin Shah plays a crooked MP 'Bhaisaab' who employs a local goon 'Omkara' (Ajay Devgan essaying the lead role) to do his evil deeds. Happy with Omkara's work he gives him a ticket to contest in the Assembly. So now a successor to Omkara has to be chosen. There are two main choices, the foreign returned, guitar wielding suave Keshu firangi ( Vivek Oberoi) and the yellow toothed, son of the soil Langda Tyagi ( Saif Ali Khan). Ajay Devgan decides to choose Keshu firangi. Now this is where the real story begins. Langda tyagi obviously gets incensed and decides to get Keshu removed. He craftily builds up an imaginary affair between Dolly, Omkara's soon to be wife ( Kareena Kapoor) and Keshu in Omkara's mind. By the time Omkara realizes this it is too late. Tyagi's wife Indu( Konkona Sen Sharma) unknowingly plays a pawn in her Husband's Plans.
The question is, how is Omkara??? Well it's just Brilliant. After seeing Maqbool, i knew that i had seen one of the best Hindi movies ever made. This goes one better. There are some directors like Vishal Bhardwaj which are keeping the bollywood's ( OK, the Indian film industry's) flag flying high. He performs a Multitude of roles - Director, Scriptwriter, Dialogue writer, composer...phew, and he does them all to perfection. Of course it helps when you have people like gulzar assisting you. The stand out part- the direction. The film is very tautly made, its very engrossing. You wont realize that its already two and a half hrs when the movie ends. The script and the dialogues are also top notch. Of course if you have the bard's one of the greatest tragedies as your basis, you cant go wrong. The dialogues are very rustic. Normally this movie's audience would have been restricted to the multiplex going crowd. But by using Hindi as is spoken in UP, with all the profanities that creep up in normal day use, it will ensure that the theaters in the Hindi speaking northern belt will run to packed houses.
The songs are quite good too. The title track is extremely good and so is 'Bidi Jaliye le'. It will become the rage among the masses.
Performance wise, Ajay Devgan excels again as Omkara delivering a brooding performance he is so adept at delivering. Kareena Kapoor disappoints as usual. Vivek Oberoi is efficient. Konkona Sen sharma is brilliant. She delivers the performance one has come to expect from her. Bipasha as the dancer Billo, had a role of an eye candy and she looks really hot. But the real show stealer is Saif ali Khan, who enacts with panache the Role of Iago( one of the greatest villains in English literature). He is mean, cruel, ingenuous and his performance is truly brilliant. He carries off a negative character quite well in Ek Hasina Thi, but here he excels himself.
All in all a must see movie, and especially for people who like dark, intense, dramatic movies.
X-Men: The Last Stand (2006)
X Men- The worst stand
I went to the theater with high hopes. With the first two movies being so good, there's not much Brett Rattner could do to screw up the franchise. With a lot of buzz building up on the movie, about the Dark Phoenix's resurrection, and a great opening at the US box office, my expectations, obviously were very high.
The story is essentially simple. The Human race(aka the government) had come up with a solution to the mutant problem (as they call it). Magneto again on the opposite side to Charles Xavier, with the all powerful Dark Phoenix on his side, and Charles Xavier's forces depleted, both fighting the govt. though in different ways.
It looks as if the story was written to accommodate the special effects, and not the other way round as it should have been. The movie is essentially building up to reach the last scene, with things added to reach there. The story lacks the depth and the moments that the first two movies had in abundance. Considering the X-Men movie has been credited much with reinventing the super hero genre, the third movie fails to hold on to the promise. It is a huge let down.
It has a few plus points though. Though the special effects are special. Sir Ian McKellen as always is brilliant. He makes the movie worth watching and re-emphasizes the fact that he is one of the best actors of his generation and probably has made Magneto one of the greatest screen villains of all time. Sir Patrick Stewart as always is dependable. Famke Janssen, Hugh Jackmen are good. One of the new characters, Kelsey Grammar as the beast gets a meaningful role and performs well. the other new character 'Angel' has a minuscule rule, and same is the case with Vinnie Jones aka 'The Juggernaut'. An actor of Vinnie Jones caliber is wasted in his oh so small role. Mystique- one of the big attractions of this Francisee has a very small role.
On the whole, Brett Ratner disappoints big time and he should stick to his Rush Hour movies. Hopefully Fox wont make the mistake of coming up with a new sequel or even a spin off (read 'Wolverine' or 'Magneto').
Batman Begins (2005)
Brilliant, Mr Nolan n Mr Goyer take a bow
The most awaited movie of the year,the most brilliant cast assembled together for the past few years, the strong word from the principles.so does the movie live up to all the hype? Yes it does.it lives up to all the expectations and definitely kicks ass.best movie of the year so far.script is the king here.brilliant cast and great characterization.Its a groundbreaking movie for its genre and shows the path for the directors who r making superhero movies.Mr singer,Mr Mendes u will have a hard time bettering batman begins.
Christian bale is the best batman yet.though he could still improve when he is wearing the bat suit,his portrayal of Bruce Wayne is perfect.Cillian Murphy as the scarecrow is excellent.Michael Caine, Morgan freeman,Liam Neeson r all perfect for their parts.Katie Holmes is good too.
But the script here is the real king.don't know how much they have deviated from the comics, but all the liberties they have probably taken have made this a perfect movie.this movie shows how and why Bruce Wayne became batman.from a young boy who loses his parents to a mean crime fighter.
warner bros, quickly green-light the sequels, we r waiting for more flicks of this quality.