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Matru ki Bijlee ka Mandola (2013)
Vishal Bharadwaj serves you "Mr. Pankaj Kapur on the rocks!"
Vishal Bharadwaj serves you "Mr. Pankaj Kapur on the rocks!"
'A twisted title, Limousine in gehu ke fields, African Zulu tribes, Pink buffalo called gulabbo, Politician sucking a lollipop in fields, Mao Tse-tung's (Maoism wala) desi avatar, UFO in a village?' Yes, this Vishal Bharadwaj film has more bizarre elements than you can ever think of !
MKBKM is one hell of a ride - from crazy, absurd, wacky, bizarre to... social, political, addressing some of the pertinent issues faced by our nation. Here you have one of the greatest actors of India in his elements, with his dual act of - caring, sensitive drunkard 'Hariya' and, a stern, selfish & staunch capitalist 'Harry'. Only actor of his caliber can carry-off such role with aplomb (he is teetotaler in real life). Please, hand over all the awards of 2013 to Mr Pankaj Kapur for his exceptional performance!
Director Vishal Bharadwaj has his own eccentric ways of making social commentary with issues such as SEZ (Special Economic Zones), land grabbing, capitalism, Maoism, corruption, honor killing, lokpal, media and what not! At one point, Bharadwaj doesn't even think twice before taking actual names of politicians -- from Sheila Dixit, to Rahul-s, Varun-s, Scindia-s of Congress as political heirs of successful politicians. It takes some time and effort from our side to get acquainted to this Haryanvi setup and accent...but if you start getting Bharadwaj's references and quirky dialogues, you are into this exhilarating mad-cap ride.
Imraan Khan as 'Matru' does well with whatever he can do with his limited acting capabilities. Anushka Sharma is effective, but she is getting typecast in these type of roles. Shabana Azmi is excellent in her sly and manipulating political avatar. Arya Babbar does well as Azmi's dimwit son.
There are many memorable scenes which only director like Vishal Bharadwaj can think of -- that hilarious fight between Matru and Mandola during "well" scene, Mandola riding a plane after getting drunk, Azmi's monologue about 'progressive' nation called India (over ages), the scene between Mandola and Azmi just before the rain arrives, Mandola telling 'Mao' - tu "left" wala bottle le, or the love story involving something as banal as "tooth-brush".
In some cases, Bharadwaj tends to go overboard especially towards the climax sequence and some of Imraan-Anushka's scenes are simply annoying. Sometimes, the film gets repetitive with street theater (natak) type execution.
Music: Vishal-Gulzar combo for music is delicious as always. It takes the film one notch higher. You get to hear samples of African and Haryanvi folk music in some of the songs. My picks from the album - Khamakhan, Badal uthiyan, Oye boy Charlie, title song.
Verdict: Overall, the film is as twisted as its title. So, watch it if you can digest this genre/Vishal Bharadwaj's films......otherwise you might walk out of cinema hall during the show, like some did where I watched the movie.
P.S. Pankaj Kapur is God of acting.
Half cooked Parsi Dhansak devoid of any namak
It is a story about 40+ Parsi leads who fall in love during the course of time and how they end up being together despite some parental opposition.
Boman Irani is the one who steals the show with his sincere attempt in infusing life into his character of Farhad Pastakia. The débutante Farah Khan looks very awkward in enacting the role of Shirin Fuggewala. She shall stick to choreographing songs and directing movies. She doesn't seem to be playing her character but just mouthing her lines without much interest. Supporting cast includes - Daisy Irani and Shammi aunty who are very good in their respective roles.
It feels good to see a film completely dedicated to happy-go-lucky, good-hearted but now dwindling Parsi community. Bela Sehgal has cast all real Parsi actors in the movie which gives it an authentic look. But the real problem here is a wafer thin story. The film entertains in parts. There are too many songs clubbed into this 2hr long movie. But I have to say it that this film is a welcome change from now-regular offensive, and juvenile comedies. The film tries to revive that middle of the road cinema once popularized by Hrishikesh Mukherjee and Basu Bhattacharya in 70s-80s. But Bhansali could have paid more attention to the story and screenplay, then the film would have been much more enjoyable. There is only one reason to watch this film which is Mr. Boman Irani.. undoubtedly one of the best actors we have in India today.
The film tries to put forward this point bit loudly that love has no expiry date.
Anyways, its a decent, simple Parsi affair.
Low energy cocktail energized by Deepika Padukone
Cocktail (2012) Director: Homi Adajania Rating: **
Cocktail is a story of three characters - Gautam, Veronica and Meera; Their friendship-> relationships-> Love -> conflicts -> climax. The first half of the film has got some funny moments, but second half gets way too melodramatic.
Acting : Deepika Padukone - She plays the carefree, flamboyant Veronica effortlessly and her character is the most complex one out of the three. Her breakdown scene in the club is brilliantly shot and acted.. and you can empathize with her character. This is her best performance to date.
Saif Ali Khan's performance is disappointing. Considering the number of times he has played this kind of role before (from Yeh dillagi to Hum Tum), this character should have been a cakewalk for him, but it's not. He fails to impress here.
Newcomer Diana Penty looks pretty and that about it. She wears 2-3 expressions through, but she is much better than Imtiaz's previous discovery Nargis Fakhri(Rockstar). Also, her voice (dubbed?) was not in sync with the dialogs.
Music: Pritam's soundtrack is impressive. All the songs are chartbusters already. Irshad Kamil's (lyricist of Rockstar) lyrics are in the context of the movie and they actually convey emotions of the characters... especially luttna and tum hi ho bandhu.. and last but not the least- Arif Lohar's cult classic 'Jugni ji' (from Coke studio) gets film picturisation.
Writing: The writer Imtiaz Ali has become master of heartaches now. Each of the movie directed/written by him had had this element. Some of the scenes in Cocktail are well-written. At some places film tries to break B'wood clichés..Like when love triangle gets complex, Saif tries to resolve the conflict directly by face-to-face conversation..rather than creating unnecessary misunderstandings between the characters. But at the same time, movie brings out some outdated scenes like - Dimple offering her kangan (bangles) for her prospective daughter-in-law, while travelling through a ship in South Africa.
You can still watch Cocktail for Deepika Padukone's performance and some good moments captured through the movie. But overall this is a low energy cocktail which just ends up being a mocktail.
Rating: 2 out of 5
Kahaani - review
A gripping, edge-of-the-seat suspense thriller - which keeps you glued to the screen till the last frame rolls. Movie stays true to its title : A well-written 'Kahaani'.
Vidya Balan carries the movie on her shoulders (or in her womb?) without the need for any conventional hero. Supporting cast is brilliant, especially the ferocious IB officer Nawazuddin (Mr. Khan), bespectacled contract killer Bob Biswas, and Bidya's lovable saarthi - Parambrata Chatterjee(Inspector Rana).
and above all this, the city of joy- Kolkata! The city is brilliantly captured by the camera from Howrah bridge at night to trams to Durga pooja. The film is completely soaked in the Bengali flavor. If you enjoy watching suspense thrillers, this is one of the best you can find in B'wood. Khub bhalo chhilo. Absolutely Recommended!