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A story of legally lawless land
Aakrosh is perhaps the only movie after Sholey in which everything just is perfect. All actors are completely immersed in their roles. Unfortunately, in bollywood such movies don't get recognized and are often forgotten quickly. Although, Aakrosh managed to get 6 awards in film fare but that was it. TO my understanding Aakrosh is brilliantly directed movie. Naseeruddin's acting was in particular very impressive, but I do not discount other minor/major actors-they were are all perfect. Watch a distrust in the law at a tribal's face (Om Puri), watch a frustration of young idealist lawyer (Naseer), watch a confidence on seasoned lawyer (Ambrish Puri), watch a pain on destitute father and a sister. The movie ends in a very realistic manner and with a great message: in the land of law the truth is only what can be supported by evidence--rest are all lies or just words. Aakrosh has a only three songs and see the real street corner nautanki dance (Tu Aisa Mard...)--brilliantly done. A must watch movie and a text book for those who are learning to act or direct.
A tragic love story
Bazaar is an excellent movie made in 1982. Sarju and Shabnam are in love but their love story end with such a tragedy that makes you think that socially acceptable and institutional ways of defining and allowing human relationship very often end up destroying the meaning of relationship itself.
Set up of the movie is typical lower class Indian society. Najma and Salim are also in platonic relationship. Salim is a writer and a thinker while Najma is a beautiful and young woman from a withered Nawab family. Due to bad financial situation her mother is asking her to trade her body to feed the family. Najma, who doesn't accept that, runs away with another man (Akhter) to Bombay. But her mental situation is never still since she loves her family but is not ready to sacrifice her youth for them. Although is a good man and he is also interested in marrying her and but his middle aged boss wants Najma and Akhter to look for a bride for him. In order to save his job and apartment Akhter persuades Najma to do something that leads to destruction of Sarju and Shabnam's love story.
Scenes from Hyderabad city in which poor parents are ready to do anything to get their daughter married are very impressive and well. All actors are very good, script, songs and costumes are fabulous. This movie was very advanced in its time of release. Even after 23 years since it release a large section of Indian society has not got the message of the movie. Western societies despite their own disadvantages are much much better systems in the perspective of this movie. Even today, girl child is seen as a burden in Indian society. Concept of single moms and even single parent is just not acceptable. Girls are identified either from the father's name or her husband's name. There is no third way. She doesn't have an identity on her own.
Najma, in the end, after a discussion with Salim, realizes that she has to have her own identity which doesn't have to come from either Akhter (her potential husband) or her parents (who want to sell her body to live!). So, she say goodbye to Akhter and goes with Salim, perhaps to find her ways to wash off her part of sins she committed in order to gain identity from Akhter.
A must see movie, If you want to understand worst part of Indian society and its solid institutional ways of doing things which are so fragile and delicate that they often get crushed.
A bunch of 7 melodious songs will haunt you forever.
Pather Panchali (1955)
Wonderful story of a poor family and a adolescent girl
I don't even think myself as someone who could write comment on Satyajit Ray's movie. But I have to tell people what I feel about this movie Pathar Panchali. Let me ask you a simple question have you ever been 'moved' emotionally? Well! If you have! Then you know what I am talking about, but you haven't been then I am sure you want try that out. Watch this movie and then you will know.
Pathar Panchali is a very different movie and is not about romance, wealth, beautiful faces, relationships, cars, computers and cellphones. Not about bombs, wars, jails, science, space and fiction or whatever. The movie is the first one in famous Apu Trilogy and is about a poor brahmin family in West Bengal (India). It is an story of a girl in this family, how she grew up among in a poverty stricken family and never had a chance to all things (garland of fake pearls, dolls, candies, bi-scope and hair oil) a girl kid deserves. She grew up a very good girl despite the fact she never went to school. Her brother was born when she was about 5-6 and she loved him a lot. Her plays with her villages girls were very well done. The scenes when one of her friend got married were wonderful and show that how mature she was in her thinking that she is never going to get married was more than a reality. The story captures real moments (hard to describe here!) from a typical poor family in India when (1955) it was not even a decade since India got independence. Poverty was a real issue in India during 1955 and it was Ray's vision to capture it in his movies for generations to see after hundreds of years later what India has come out of today when Bollywood makes $10bn budget movies and they fail to even break-even on box office.
Its amazing that Ray had a vision of making such movies when rest of the country was struggling to survive. These movies are really really low cost movies and are example of pure intellectual work. When I was one of the Italian movie "La Strada" then I thought that perhaps it is the only movie which comes close to Pathar Panchali.
I would say all three movies in Apu Trilogy (Pathar Panchali, Aparajito and Apu Sansar) are great jewels in Indian cinema and they will continue to amaze people for hundreds of years. If you haven't watch them then you will never know what a true will looks likes. It moves you! No kidding! Pathar Panchali is really a best human document ever produced.
Nuovo Cinema Paradiso (1988)
A beautiful story
I probably don't have words to describe what happened to me after having seen both versions of the movie. I was taken away so much. I wept and was real sad for a while. This movie is a closest thing to the perfection in movie making art. A beautiful story, perfect direction and acting. I loved the script so much. Lot of people differ on their opinion about original version Vs. shorter version. I watched both of them and I just want to say that their is no point in watching shorter version after all you have to see longer version anyway because you don't want to miss out even a bit of what this movie is about. The last conversation with grown up Toto and his old mother made me wept and it was so real and genuine it sends shivering in me. A movie has everything in it, Toto's kid life story that has school life, street life, home life and social life and as an adolescent everything around him has been shown and of course the grown up Toto is just awesome. Alfredo is another character in the movie who is so impressive and real. One thing I liked about the movie is that director has done a marvelously job of keeping thing connected. Every little scene has its impact on the movie. There are no vague things.
Movie is bit sad and sentimental in the end but in a beautiful way, no killings or rape or poverty kind of stuff. A rare natural sadness that emerges automatically, we don't see this thing in movies very often.
Little events in the movie are shown so beautifully, like the one -when Toto's collections of films (he stole from Alfredo's place) catches fire and his mother is trying to put it off to also consoling her little daughter- was so well done and directed. The movie is full of details and goes very smoothly and you will never want it to end.
Even if you hate watching movies, watch this one. Steal money to rent this movie if you need to. You will never forget this movie for your life time.
12 Angry Men (1957)
Closed room with 12 men and heated discussion
12 angry men was a unique movie I ever saw, it was such a simple plot and extremely low cost movie marvelously done. I was told that this movie is showed in most top business schools to teach MBA students the leadership skills and the power of discussion. Lot of people would think how boring a movie would be if the whole movie is all about the jury discussion but it isn't. It keeps you engaged and you never even get chance to think that you are bored. An Indian movie "Ek Ruka Hua Faisala" was also made on the same plot and inspiration. That was also a very popular movie. Henry Fonda's role is so impressive and he did it right. I would so watch it even if you don't like the kind of movies where you have to put yourself while you are watching them, watch this one. This one is very very good.
The Cook the Thief His Wife & Her Lover, is the kind of movie I never understood the purpose of, I guess I am too new to the world of movies. I probably don't appreciate certain aspect of movie making art. This movie had all kinds of disgusting things which normally will make you pull out your DVD from the player and insert something else, but I couldn't do that. The disgust in this movie keeps you engaged and you actually see the whole movie. In the end it kind of started making sense too. I perhaps don't know if I liked the movie, but I certainly didn't "didn't like it." If you are OK with the most disgusting and awe inspiring scenes like two fully naked human lovers transported alive in a truckload of rotting meat, people's tongue, belly button being cut and fed to them; go for it. This was really a movie that left me a very different person from the one I was like before watching it. A permanent change. The people who I watched this movie with were like hypocrites for the movies they rent, said, "well there were good colors in the movie!" Give me a break!, if you can't find anything good in a movie then you start appreciating those disturbing colors. Anyway! Beware its not the usual movie which you could watch for recreation. Its very disturbing. Watch it when you are not looking for relaxing stuff.
Per un pugno di dollari (1964)
Art of killing
Simply saying having seen this movie my interest and appreciation in shooting men has increased considerably. Now I tend to think that it more of an art! I just loved the way killing of men by a .45 revolver of Eastwood has been shown. Quite a story with fun, sorrow, danger, risk, climax. A real drama in popular Sergio's Westerner settings. I was told that the third of the "Dollar Trilogy", The Good, the bad and the ugly was the best among three but I find that we probably should not compare, each movie in the trilogy has an independent and different story. I wouldn't say that "A Fistful of Dollars" is any lesser then the most popular of dollar trilogy i.e. "The Good, the bad and the ugly" it is indeed a marvelous piece of movie making. I don't really know the reasoning behind the changing name of the movie but its hardly the name of the movie that matters. If you are interested in Western genre go for these movies first.
American Beauty (1999)
Dramatically real stuff
American beauty is my all time favorite movie. The movie takes its stand on issues that society faces everyday but will not accept that it does face them. Angela, Lester, Carolyn, Jane and Ricky are real characters. The movie actually goes pretty smoothly and takes you along. I was left thinking "huh!" when it ended. Its little sad towards the end but thats how American family life is the way it is seen and perceived in general. I particularly enjoyed the conversations between Lester and Carolyn. I liked the role of Lester so much; a true hero, especially when she makes Angela say that she is feeling so stupid! No wonder this movie won 5 Oscars.
Another dreamy drams and bollywoodish stuff! beware!
I wasn't surprised that the movie was such a painful waste of 3 hours. What I don't understand is this! Why Bollywood movies take everything to emotional level and just make the whole thing a headache. Overpoured emotions in everything they do, every dialoge, every action is full of emotions even in a so called hi-fi action movie. Another thing I hate about Bollywood is that it has yet to come out of excessive and unnecessary use the computerization of actions and scenes. I just don't know why they unnecessarily put a loud music behind every scene which is done by one of those sentimental heroes and made the whole action modified by the computerization, it just makes it unbearable. I would rather keep the whole thing flow naturally and something people can relate to. I am sure lot of people like such a dreamy drama but at the end it just doesn't make sense at all. I can understand that they keep on making the stuff that sells, without worrying whether or not it makes sense. Good luck!
The Rules of Attraction (2002)
The movie is an absolutely junk and full of stupid ideas. I regret renting it out without any reviews. I am so off mood of that I am even talking time to write review so that other people are spared if they happened to read my review. I don't even know how people get this kind junk funded and actually make it happen released. This was awful. The DVD cover said, "what else you want in a movie!" they fooled me. This movie is not even a comedy as a comedy I couldn't keep my patience to finish the movie it just wasn't making any sense, forget sense of humor. God! save me from such junk. Guys! don't waste your time and mood.