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Drumrolls for prince Haider, standing ovation for Queen Tabu, and 21 canon salute for the maestro and the lord-of-all Vishal Bhardwaj
Has Kashmir ever looked so beautiful in a movie? probably not! Have 1990's insurgency in the valley felt more real on screen? don't think so! Has there been better adaptation of Shakespeare's Hamlet? I don't know, but this is as good as it gets. Vishal and the whole team has given everything possible to make this master-piece. The story in the fore-front is direct adaptation from tragedy play Hamlet, with son looking for his lost/murdered father, his mother getting in relationship with his uncle, son seeking revenge, and mom & son still longing for each other. The story in the backdrop is from 1995 Kashmir, where young kashmiri lads are pushed onto one side or the other, army/police/state seeking control of the valley, and a few just playing everyone and benefiting from the misfortunes of the others. In the first half, both the stories are competing with each other to get the focal role. Second half is mostly about the main story. First half is the build-up of the plot, characters and their emotions. Second half (immediately after that cameo from my favorite Irrfan Khan) is where it explodes in all directions.
Tabu is amazing and awesome, and even better than she was in Maqbool. Her character is a blend of three different roles - conniving adulteress, a dejected wife, and insanely loving mother. The way she calls her son "Jaanam", the way she parts from Shahid after kissing him thrice, the wedding mehandi on her hands (with Bhardwaj making sure that people notice it) - it was all so touching that you can feel yourself to be a part of the story. Shahid's chocolaty and not-so-kashmiri & never-gonna-be-old face doesn't go well with the role of a tragedy prince hamlet. I might have preferred someone else, but might have very limited options to find somebody young and talented enough to play this role, with a girl like Shraddha Kapoor swooning after him. But, to be fair with Shahid, he was definitely very good, especially after he goes bald and have that touch of insanity. Kay Kay was very good too, but lets agree that he has done better roles. I would have liked to see more of Irrfan Khan. Shraddha Kapoor was convincing in her role of love- smitten young naive girl.
Movie gets A+ on the cinematography - we humans have literally wasted this paradise on earth - Kashmir in its pure raw form hasn't ever looked more beautiful. The camera work and screenplay is amazing, especially in those long mother & son scenes. The background score is so original and refreshing - really liked the parts, where it start playing tunes from some of the yester-year movies. Dialogues are direct adaptation from Hamlet and completely apt in this movie story-line. The "to be or not to be" rendition is simply amazing.
I won't say its a perfect movie - could not understand the relevance of that romantic song; shaved chest of shahid kapoor in 1990's kashmir would be hard to explain; gravediggers' poster looked much better than that scene in the movie; and probably could have leveraged those two salman's even more for few more lighter moments.
Overall, movie is a masterpiece and is a must must watch!
I Am Kalam (2010)
Dreams are awesome, they are magical and they turn true :)
Celebrate the power of dreams, celebrate the power of friendship and innocence, and celebrate the inherent goodness of human beings. Such a simple story, yet so powerful, that you feel yourself being lot of characters at the same time. Is the destiny pre-decided or is it that we make our destiny? I don't know, but I have always wanted to believe that its the latter. But either way, nobody stops you to dream or even try to fulfill those dreams.
Both the kids are amazing - Harsh Mayar playing Chhotu/Kalam is a naturally curious, street smart and a gifted kid. He doesn't care about his background and still wants to make big in life, and has his plans how to get there. Hussan Saad, playing the little royal price - he is a lonely kid with no friends of his age, lives a protected and privileged life, and is at loss to understand why others can't lead a similar life. I especially like when the young price imposes his royalty - like when he thunders on Laptan "how dare you call my friend a thief". Both the kids are so naturally comfortable in each others presence and consider each other as equals - that's the innocence till you are kids and is lost so fast when you grow up. Gulshan Grover is very good, with his teenage like crush and broken heart for that french traveler (who herself is pretty good). In a way, we have everything in this movie to complete the story - main character Chhotu/Kalam, supporting actor Kunver Ranvijay Singh, villain Laptan, and all other supporting cast.
My sincere thanks to the makers of this movie, I absolutely loved it.
If movies are form of art, lunchbox should be showcased in the finest of galleries
"We are what we want to be" - while, we have our limitations, but we can still try and get close to what we want. Not to belabor with my own biases, I think lunchbox might be one of the best examples of telling a story about routine and monotonicity of life, and where simple accidents can lead to a path on pursuit of happiness. The movie is about three characters. Mr. Fernandes - a widower, one month from retirement, social pariah, loner grumpy elderly man, who have resigned to his fate. Ila - a lonely neglected housewife, whose world revolves around her daughter, her neighborhood aunt, and her attempts to appease her husband through her food. Shaikh - soon to-be replacement of Mr. Fernandes, full of life and dreams, wants to make big in life and for whom failure is not an option. Its not hard to find a bit of all these three characters in oneself and no matter how you perceive each character at the start, but by the end, you feel for everyone in the movie.
Movie moves at a slow (but perfect) pace with its main characters going through their daily routines - traveling in trains, walking to their homes, making casual conversations, cooking food, eating food and offcourse we get a glimpse of near-perfect supply chain of mumbai dabbawaalas. Things change when after mistaken delivery, Fernandes and Ila start exchanging notes, and within those few scribbled words, they fall for each other and dream of finding solace with each other. While Irrfan has made peace with his current life, Ila is trying to fix her current situation with her jerk of a husband (yes, thats how he comes across), both of them realize that they can be happy by making that leap of faith, by breaking away and starting afresh. As both characters wait for that day's note and probably thats the best part of their day - Ila treats herself with tea while reading note and Irfaan unable to wait and taking off for early lunch.
At the same time,Shaikh is trying real hard to build relationship with Irrfan, and is ultimately successful in breaking that wall in Irrfan (which he guards so ostensibly) and is able to expose his soft underside. While at first, you think that Shaikh is that crooked smarty pants, who just wants to make it through, but as the movie progresses, you know that he is the one who knows to dream, who is unabashedly honest about things in his life and few things in the past, and isn't shy for asking anything. His insistence on asking Irrfan to try his "pasandas" and his story about his mom - all this so perfectly blends on his personality and his motto of life.
Needless to say there could not have been better cast. Irrfan, I believe is the best thing to have happened to Indian cinema in last 10 to 20 years. Nawazuddin is so natural that he doesn't have to try ever so hard to blend into his character. Nimrat was a revelation, is very beautiful and plays her part perfectly.
My highest praises are for Ritesh Batra, who has done unbelievable job as a first time director and I hope to see much more from him in the future. Script was extremely tight, screenplay was awesome. Director never had to try too hard to make a point or move the story - it simply flows through like poetry. Very rarely you see so many contrasting emotions in the same story - silence, loneliness, innocence, glimmer of hope, dreams, ambition, pursuit of happiness, courage to change.
My two favorite scenes - when Irfaan khan says that he has a girlfriend and when asked for her name, he takes his time, thinking if she really is his girlfriend, and then smiling through his eyes, says "Ila". Next favorite would be when Ila's daughter waves a real long goodbye to her mom, realizing that not everything is well in her mom's world.
I don't care much if it wins a big award or not, but if you love movies, this is a must watch.
The Wolf of Wall Street (2013)
Excess, overboard, over the top?? - keep it coming, give me more of it
Goodfellas was the gold standard - it starts with unimaginable intensity and it ends with the same. While, goodfellas has the best ever portrayal of how mobsters might live their life and think about others, TWOWS gets close to telling a powerful story about debauchery, greed and extravagance in disdainful, abhorrent and empathy-lacking life of wallstreet traders. As "Rolling Stone" review says Scorcese has taken it over the moon, but you are going to completely love it. The movie is 3 hours long, but I could have controlled my bladder for 30 more minutes and taken on more of this magic. During all these 3 hours, I might have lost a little grip for a total of just 5 minutes. WSJ review says something about this being lengthy and being repetitive, mind-numbing drama. Really?? Suck it, grow up and learn something about movies and about storytelling.
I have been waiting for this movie for quite some time now and it turned out to be even better than I expected it to be. Leonardo has added another very strong bullet on his ever expanding resume. The movie is all about his character - I think he is there on screen for 90% of the movie. That scene where Leo is high on Quaaludes and drives back from country club, might be one of the funniest and among the best ever performances. Perhaps, this might be his lucky year for the Oscars. Jonah Hill is simply awesome, right from the point where he meet Leo and wants to work for him. The script, screenplay and dialogues are off the charts. This is dark and crude humor (and at times crass and outrageous) at its best, and the filmmakers make no attempt to sway away from that overall theme. I think movie lost a little intensity towards the end, and probably the last 15 minutes were its weakest. But, in-all this is among the best of this year. Thanks yet again Mr. Scorcese for all the entertainment.
American Hustle (2013)
The cast absolutely rocks
what you have is one of the best performances of the recent times by the "entire" cast (not just couple of them). Christian Bale is the master of makeover and is so much into character and at times hard to believe that the same guy played the famous caped crusader. Amy Adams was fabulous in "The Master" and is completely convincing as a conniving ruthless seductress. Jennifer Lawrence is adorable, playing that crazy, eccentric and loud mouthed wife - she might be the best female actor to have happened in last few years and next decade or so belongs to her. Bradley Cooper is great with his funny hair playing that over-zealous fed who wants to shake the whole system. I might be stretching it, but Renner has that aura of Joe Pesci. I absolutely loved everyone in the movie.
For me the story/plot was not the most original of all. If you have seen many of these, you know how it is going to end and who is gonna win. Sometimes, the predictable trying too hard with the cover of unpredictability (and all those twists and turns) can be off-putting. But, script is extremely tight and gripping. The chemistry between all the characters is almost natural. The dialogues are well thought and are timely hilarious. The camera and lighting, the costumes, hair-dos all take you to that 70-80s era. In all, a great job!
Blood Diamond (2006)
"you find yourself a good man, alright Maddy"
For me, there are three stories going on simultaneously in this movie. First is about the state of Sierra Leone and infighting over blood diamonds - this goes on in the background and forms the basis of whole movie. Second one is about Leonardo, the soldier, smuggler and the survivor, along with Solomon Vandy, the native, fisherman, and a father, and their search for the diamond and their lives in between. Third is the relationship between Connelly and Leonardo - I don't know if I can give it any name, but I don't think I have ever seen such a powerful unexpressed chemistry between two characters in any other movie (and I haven't seen Casablanca or Gone with the wind). There is no kiss, no hug, not even a handshake, there are just words, there are just unexpressed expressions through the eyes, movements of the throat and thats all you need (just to clarify I am more of a mafia, drama, biopics, history genre kind of a guy) Connelly is as beautiful as she has always been, even in her unglamorous journalistic attire, and is quite convincing in her character (perhaps too good looking). Leonardo is natural self, which means fabulous, may be at par with his Howard Hughes role in Aviator. In all, its a very tightly written gripping script - I watch it every time it is on TV (sometimes just to get to the last scene between Leonardo and Connelly). Pity that it didn't get any academy - I would have expected it to at least win for supporting actor or editing.
not just a typical teen movie; its for everybody
Standing in the line for tickets, with all these less-than-20-years ahead of me, I was a bit worried, but this movie goes beyond being just for a specific age group and might be one of the best in the last couple of years. I haven't been in an American high school but don't have to, in order to enjoy, understand and relate to this movie. Charlie is a more-than-typical introvert who while being extremely bright and sincere, has severe problems making friends, but ends being the best friend to two seniors (Sam and Patrick). Sam and Patrick are free liberal souls (with their own personal problems), who on the exterior are polarly different from Charlie and they want different things in life. But, they care for each other, they like each other's company, and I think like everybody else they are bound by one common aspiration - "to be happy". I think this is one of those movies where you want it to move really slow and you are not waiting for what next to happen, but instead you want to fully absorb what is happening in that scene. My most favorite scenes in the movie are when Sam and Charlie are alone in her bedroom, and when they tell about their feeling for each other. Entire cast is great, especially Emma Watson, who was extremely graceful in this movie. Director Stephen Chbosky has done an amazing job, and might have created his career's best work. I would expect this movie to be at least nominated for academy best picture.
7 Khoon Maaf (2011)
not the most entertaining, but still very good
the story line and plot is awesome, the script is pretty good, actors are one of the best in the industry, still this movie is not as gripping as it could have been. Perhaps, Vishal could have put more effort in editing it. Especially in the first half there are parts where you have to try hard to concentrate. Definitely it's not an entertaining movie (as compared to Omkara), but still its worth a watch. Priyanka lives upto Director's expectations - for me it was a real surprise that she was so "natural" in so many different characters (well, there were not so many, as you may tend to imagine from the title). Still, my favorite was her "Kashmiri Sultana" look. In the first scene of the movie, it seemed like if she is trying to redo Charlize Therorn (in Monster) or Renee Zellweger (in Bridget Jones Diaries) with her dark dusky puffed and "not so pretty" look - she may not win an Oscar, but a filmfare or even a national award may not be far fetched. There are movies which tend to make you curious about its book - this movie is one of those. Another thing I am not able to understand - in his attempt to give that retro look, filmmakers may have taken it too far; while they were talking about events in early and late 2000, why was PC for the most part in Sadhana and Saira Bano look. Even the camera could have been better lighted and scenes could have been more colorful. All the different husbands could have been given better and stronger roles. The climax was not at all predictable, but still closer towards being anti-climax - I would have liked it more if was more thriller type or more in line with story build up. Still, I liked the movie very much and everyone who loves the cinema should watch it. 8/10
Apocalypse Now (1979)
This movie is not from this world
Were they not the real soldiers? Was it not the real war? Was that not the real horror? Have the people not really gone insane? Was the movie really made on this planet and by some mortal human beings? Was it a video documentary or was it a movie made 5 years after the real war? Yes, to all of the above, but I have never ever seen any movie so close to reality or actually real. It was not a war movie, it was not a drama, it was simply a deeply touching horror drama. I am still wondering what should I make out of this movie, should I feel anything, should I be sorry about anybody – if yes, about who?? American soldiers, Vietnamese, those tribals, each one of these or nobody? Coppola doesn't leave anything obvious and everything is open to your own interpretation – he is at his arrogant best. Man, it takes inhuman guts to make such a movie or even think of doing it. He was fortunate to supported by such a able and gutsy team of editors, script writer, screenplay writers, cinematographer and so many other people. I am really surprised and disappointed that this movie was not awarded academy for Film Editing – it's as ridiculous as it can be. My head still spins from imagining all these people living in those swamps and malaria invested waters for almost 2 years.
Talking about the cast, I would rather say that movie and its makers go way beyond the cast. Any other actors may have done equal justice (if not less) to the movie. This may sound highly uncharitable, especially to Martin Sheen and Robert Duvall (I don't mention Brando – he was rather a waste, Coppola may have utilized that money somewhere else – am I speaking out of my shoes?? ). Sheen was awesome awesome and hats off to all his effort, and it was rather wise (or fortunate) not to have Al Pacino in his place, but the movie is not about Captain Willard, Col. Kilgore and Col. Kurtz, it about everything around each of them – it goes way beyond all these people.
In the end, "The End" will stay as my personal favorite for the most apt movie soundtrack of all times.
Japanese cinema at its best - a gift from Akira Kurosawa
Last night, I had this rare fortune of watching one more of Akira Kurosawa's magic "Ran". If you still haven't been able to lay your hands on it, make it the first thing on your priority list. How I wish, "Seven Samurai" could have been made in color. This movie is a pure joy to watch as good as are other attributes of the movie, the cinematographic excellence leaves any other movie ever made so far behind. I have liked "The Last Samurai" for its imagery and amazing color presentation, but even that movie pales if compared to "Ran". Opening scene is spellbinding - music score along with those moments of deafening silence is way too good. No doubt, it was the most expensive Japanese film ever made. Lord Hidetora is superiorly awesome (especially when he turns mad) and Lady Kaede at times seems to be even more ruthless than Nurse Ratched (was in "One flew over cuckoo's nest"). Also, so many subtle and some not so-subtle references to Buddha are timely and apt. However, I would confess that movie is not perfect - the attack on the third castle is more or less ordinary, and I do wonder how even in that wilderness, Kyoami was able to maintain squeaky clean clothes for himself and his master.
So, if you really love movies, go and grab it - a movie must to watch before you die!!!
Lage Raho Munna Bhai (2006)
Munnabhai - the magic recreated!!!!
Probably, this is the best movie sequel ever produced in the Hindi cinema and surely would be one of the top ten comedy Hindi movies of all times. I can't remember if any comedy movie (hindi or other) ever been able to deliver such a strong message in such a subtle and non-preachy manner. Coming out of the cinema hall, you can't help from having that huge delightful smile on your face.. This movie isn't a sequel in its true sense; apart from the characters of Munnabhai and Circuit, there is nothing in common with its predecessor (unarguably, the movie would not have been possible without these two characters as in their original form).
Few reasons which turn it to a must watch movie:
1) awesome movie, with astounding screenplay, story, characterization and many other things. Its a 100% clean movie with no risqué dialogues, no item number, no vulgar dresses and no vulgar scenes, which is an achievement in today's times.
2) Performance of Munnabhai and Circuit duo - Sanjay dutt is undoubtedly the most lovable bollywood bhai, he is bit old now but still going very strong and Circuit has come up with his magic yet again, this guy's timing of dialogues is perfect... In all, the duo rocks!!!!!!!
3) Strong, strong and very strong message delivered... I won't delve much onto this or else risk disclosing the story and henceforth the fun... Everybody is going to respect Mahatma even more after watching this movie - bet you are going to love that enigmatic smile
4) Jhanavi (Vidya Balan)... such a graceful beauty, her face is like bright morning light; gosh, the lady literally smiles with her eyes, you are bound to fall in love with this gurl, just like Munnabhai.. apart from that she acts very well and gives a strong performance...
There are many more things that make this movie memorable and a treat to watch.... surely, something to watch before you die :-)
Being Cyrus (2005)
New age Indian cinema has barged in
Well, guys bar is getting higher with each such movie, each new-comer bend on out-beating the last one; more importantly film-watchers are getting more intelligent, with better film sense; so you filmmakers of yester-years better watch out and get serious on film-making, else there won't be much of masses left in few more years to tolerate all the crap you have been feeding them. 10 years ago, no one would have even believed bollywood to be capable to come up with such a movie (or may i say even 5 years). Last few years have been a revelation for the Indian cinema. it has come up with lot of experimental ideas - some of the most novel ideas ever presented. Parallel cinema is getting closer to the commercial cinema - i am waiting for the day, when there won't even exist terms like that. Multiplexes in India are lot to credit for that, giving opportunity to creativity, which have been able to create a niche of such audience, who support these movies. Now you Indians can recommend your non-Indian friends with a bollywood movie.
A 90 minutes movie, in English, with no songs, not an iota of emotions being presented (in whatsoever relation possible between the characters - well this is, I would say even worse than reality). I won't rate it as an all time great movie, but definitely its nice, well made and deserves at least a one time watch. Well, when you pick such power-packed performers in one movie, you have fair chances of getting it all right (unless you overdo your characters) and you are definitely gonna come with an "above-average" movie. In all it must take a lot of guts for the first time director to execute such a different idea and that too while working with such a great performers - undoubtedly, some of the best in the Indian cinema.
The plot has been very good and very well executed, with suspense hanging in there right till the end.. moods swinging serious to comedy ... black comedy to say the least, exploring the various human relations... I would not delve into more details of the movie, lest it costs into divulging the suspense of movie, but watchers be better ready for shock at the turn of events in the movie, when some seemingly unassuming characters reveal their true faces and others with dark side get even more darker.. totally unpredictable movie.
Dubutante director has given a stellar performance, he himself must had had a hell of time dealing with expectations of such great actors. Saif Ali Khan need not prove himself anymore, he had played so many versatile roles in last few years. The guy is getting better with each performance and he is one of the most reliable and bankable actors. In his generation, except Aamir Khan, he gives run for money to all others in bollywood. Naseer plays a sculptor, who now lives in obscurity, is hooked more to pot than anything else, spends his life along with his all day hallucinations. Dimple Kapadia is quite convincing in her slutty wife role. Boman Irani, the only parsi in real life is also the most convincing of all. Rest of the crew is also pretty good.
Another refreshing one from bollywood
First things first - so now, we know John Abhraham can act a bit (careful - don't set your expectations too high). Next, apart from the happy ending and goodly/moral stuff in the climax, movie ain't so predictable - thats something for good.
Two utterly different guys have quite a few things in common - big mouth, can't keep their calm, want to do the things way they think is right and top of it are facing strikingly similar personal problems - both at the verge of a financial disaster.
Chance encounter leads the two to their worst nightmares, with one waging for others blood. However, the timely self-realization by both turns it into a fruitful encounter and eases out the life - supposedly, living happily ever after :-).
Direction is above average, plot intriguing, character portrayal good, cinematography also good (lures you to visit the real mumbai), above all a nice cameo by Priyanka Chopra in the end. Nana is pretty good - does his archetypal role, talks a lot, but thank God he doesn't shout that much.
In all its worth a one time watch.
Its dark, its grotesque, its well made movie.
People tell me that this movie is inspired/copied or total remake of a Korean masterpiece "OldBoy"; but I don't mind it, till the time outcome is good. In this case, the director and his cast has been able to handle it well. The movie is very dark and possibly the most grotesque movie ever made in bollywood. But, the strong point of the movie is it never wavers from its storyline - they have tried to make it as sleek as possible.
Sanjay Dutt once again stands tall with his superb performance - his desperation depicted both through his eyes and body language is a treat to watch. John Abraham was kind of revelation to me - first time I realized, that even this guy can act. Quite a few things in the movie may not seem realistic, but all is compensated by a good presentation. Well Done!!
Rang De Basanti (2006)
Its a beauty - A must watch movie
For those who are yet to watch this movie, beware of any pre-conceived notions: First, its not a patriotic movie, but the tagline could not have been better - "A generation awakens". Second, this movie is not just being pulled by Aamir Khan i.e. this is just not his movie. It is much more than that; each and every character's role has been justified - a bunch of friends, each with a completely different personality from others. The guys (and gal) who just believe in fun/frolic, most of them are afraid of getting out of their college life cocoon, don't have slightest inkling of the real world, are always the first to complain about the system, and at the same time won't take any responsibility.
Hats off to such a good direction by Rakesh Mehra. The way he has presented the idea of transition of wayward youths to something of today's young krantikari (similar that of 1920's pre-independence India) was simply amazing. Its a novel idea, presented brilliantly. A quite colorful movie with a real life touch.
Few people complained to me its not so realistic, its not so easy to kill defense minister; oh! now come on - give them a break. It could not have been more real for a movie.
Apart from that, "spontaneous" dialogues by Prasoon Joshi, presented by Aamir Khan/Sharmaan Joshi were too good. I am really pleased to be able watch such movies from bollywood in my youth, when uptil 5 years ago, it was just that mushy/melodramatic stories. Seriously!! some very good stuff is coming out from the Indian cinema nowadays.
Prakash Jha does it one more time.
I went in to watch this movie expecting something very good from Prakash Jha and it was worth. The promos of the movie were released just a week or two in advance of the movie; so there was not much hype, hoopla or curiosity surrounding the movie. As always, director has done a lot of research in writing the script and his efforts have paid well.
As the title suggests, it is about the thriving kidnapping industry in the Indian state of bihar. Many of the characters may actually resemble the real life people. The movie makes you aware of the whole kidnapping process. The hostage is referred as "delivery" and it exchanges hands with 2 or more different parties, before landing with the one who decided, planned and ordered the kidnap. Each party (or intermediary) keeps account of all the expenses/cost incurred during their task (including vehicles, arms and meals). Everyone in the state administration - includes police, ministers - gets cut in the ransom - WOW, what a perfect business model.
Alongwith is a story of a Professor Shastri who wants to fight the corruption in the old Gandhian ways and will in no way compromise with his value system, not even for his unemployed son, who is unable to make his way in this system through honest ways. When he tries to bend and makes slight adjustments (by offering bribe, even when his name was there in the first merit list for state police officers), his unluck prevails landing himself into big trouble. He decides to get into the kidnapping industry - the one he once wanted to fight against. First half of the movie is awesome, but it looses its steam in the last one hour and is just like any other movie of this kind. End was not at all good - I still can't understand, why even directors of this genre believe that movies always have to end on a positive note.
The main characters have delivered power packed performance. Ajay Devagan and Nana Patekar once again prove themselves. Other Parkash Jha regulars like Mohan Agashe, Yashpal Sharma and Ayub Khan are also good. Once in the lifetime opportunity to watch fully clothed Bipasha Basu, but her role is useless and movie was very much possible without her.
Dil Chahta Hai (2001)
Dil Chahta Hai - most appropriate title
This movie was released in the year 2001, the time when bollywood seemed to be in doldrums, producing one trash after another, the same year when another masterpiece "Lagaan" was released from bollywood and the year I finished my college and entered my first job and wow what an experience - it was just like a fresh breath of air.
The first movie by an unknown young guy Farhan Akhtar (may be known earlier because of his famous parents Javed Akhtar - lyricist in this movie - and Honey Irani) and what a fantastic job he did both in direction and script writing. For me, he did a great job by experimenting with a novel idea, moving away from the well established norms of the bollywood industry and not presenting yet again melodramatic bollywood plot.
The story revolves around three friends (supposedy born to very rich parents) - their relationship and their personal lifes - the guys with totally different natures and with their different meaning of life. However, the only thing that keeps them ever together is their never ending friendship.
The story is not so great, doesn't convey any specific message but it keeps you glued and is refreshing as many times you watch it. In fact, many of the college going Indian youth (and even from other countries) would be able to relate themselves with the three main movie protagonists.
All the actors have given very good performance. Aamir Khan simply reaffirmed his talent. He plays a prankster, who has knack of turning every thing into funny and the one who doesn't believe in the institution of love, but ultimately falls for it. For Saif Ali Khan this movie may even be called his re-birth. He plays a character who falls for every other girl, but is unable to express it when he really starts loving the one. Akhshay Khanna playing a bit mature and serious character may have seemed slightly weaker than the other two, but he played his character very well. This guy has a very different meaning for love and falls for an older woman. Preity Zinta looks amazing (as always) with an all different hair style. Sonali Kulkarni didn't seem so much at ease with the commercial cinema, but then too gave pretty good performance.
Music by Shankar-Eshaan-Loy combination was also refreshing and different from all that mushy mushy Hindi film music. The great thing about songs that they didn't break the movie rhythm and seemed more to be part of the movie's story.
In all, a must watch movie.
A Few Good Men (1992)
Watch it for Jack Nicholson and his dialogues
This is one of the movies, I have watched many many times. First few times, Tom Cruise seemed to be giving an ordinary performance; probably my shortcoming that I was not able to understand his character. But, then I realized that he was playing exactly the character he was supposed to portray and he did it in a impeccable manner - wow!!!! He was just second to Jack Nicholson.
I could not imagine if anyone else could have replaced Jack Nicholson - his stellar performance (as always) and the intensity and ferocity with which he delivered his dialogues - man, even his facial expressions at times were worth a watch.
Story line and plot don't seem to be so strong and there will be many people who would not agree with its end and even with the message of the movie, which is although not so clear but definitely points towards some of the not so best practices being followed in any country's army (over discipline in the name of straightening the people and getting things in order or even avoiding any further chaos or things being run by certain people just to settle their personal scores and run in a way they think is the best, even disregarding other people's reasonable opinions). However, the other things apart, movie was a treat to watch. Director Rob Reiner and writer Aaron Sorkin didn't leave any stone unturned when it came to dialogues in the movie - in fact, the dialogues delivered by each and every character (not only Jack Nicholson) have been simply stunning.
Enemy at the Gates (2001)
simply awesome war movie - one trying to capture the human emotions
I must have watched this movie more than 10 times and every time I have started liking it even more. First half hour of the movie is as stunning (or horrifying) as can be for a war movie, with young soldiers just out of their teens, moving towards an unknown destination, unaware of their fate/destiny, most of the times even unaware of the cause they are fighting for, forced to fight an enemy with superior arms.
The way the human emotion has been portrayed is simply amazing - Danilov's liking (or lust) for Tania, for the same reason his envy and jealousy towards Vassili who was once his best friend, Sacha's believe in Vassili's victory, König's one eyed focus to get rid of Vassili.
Generally, war movies lack in the thing that they show just story of one side. This movie prominently deals with the story of Russians, but there is a genuine effort to tell about Germans too. Definitely, this is a story of real people (and heroes) in a real war.
An amazing performance by all the actors - Jude Law, Ed Harris, Joseph Fiennes, Rachel Weisz and young Gabriel Thomson - and above all by director Jean-Jacques Annaud. Kudos to all of them.