Saturday, August 22

My Review - Kaminey

At one point of time in Kaminey, there is a shot of Charlie(Shahid) with a revolver walking away from the camera on a railtrack and a shit scared Guddu(Shahid) running away with a guitar held close to his chest. You get the feeling that ah well...this is the end. And Baaam! It's not over. Not until a good 25 minutes of craziness, negotiations and violence.

It is this unpredictability and the brilliant brilliant writing which make Kaminey and its characters watchable. Immensely watchable. Kaminey is about twin brothers Charlie Sharma and Guddu Sharma, who hate each other's sights and how their lives get intertwined by a simple twist of fate or should I say a simple string of a guitar! :-) Charlie is a small time thug who dreams of getting rich 'through a chota shortcut' and Guddu has a panchayati raj type 14 year plan to settle down in life with his girlfriend Sweety(Priyanka Chopra). Apart from having a lovable ensemble of ganglords(Bengaali, African and Ladakhi) and corrupt cops(Lobo and Lele) from the Mumbai Police Anti-Narcotic cell, Kaminey has as one of its highlights Bhope Bhau, a 'Jai Maharashtra' spouting local politician, played by Amol Gupte, writer of Taare Zameen Par.

Kaminey is a treat to watch. Because it treats the viewer with some amount of respect and leaves it for him to see, understand and laugh. Reminiscent of the Coen Brothers in parts, Kaminey is both visually dark and emotionally entertaining. After enduring severe human rights violations in the form of a Ghajini and Love Aaj Kal (M not even counting the Kambakht Ishqs and CC2Cs), Kaminey gives you hope that there is still someone in Bollywood who can make rivetting, realistic and meaningful cinema (Apart from the Johnny Gaddaar dude).
Shahid and Priyanka come of age and its unlikely that they will be able to better this one in the near future. Amol Gupte is a revelation as Bhope and Shiv Subramaniam is absolutely hilarious as Lobo.

Ramgopal Varma used to say - I am the anti Yash Chopra. I am like the Al-Qaida and Yash Raj is the United States. I guess that mantle lies now with the wonderfully talented dialogue-screenplay-story writer, music director and director Vishal Bhardwaj.

The anti-thesis of Bollywood and the future of Bollywood is here. And he is awfome!

Tuesday, August 18

Karan Johar

Once said,"2.6 Billion people know Tom Cruise. 3.2 Billion knew ShahRukh Khan".

Apparently the latter does not include a US Immigration Official. wink wink...

Monday, August 3

My Review - Love Aaj Kal

I understand its difficult to make a Lagaan again. But Swades was almost there. Repeating a Dil Chahta Hai was always an uphill task. But Lakshya wasn't that bad. Munnabhai II seemed like a gone case. But with Lage Raho Munnabhai, Raju Hirani was the last man smiling.

In the late 90s and early 2000s, there was a trend in Bollywood. Boy and girl meet, fall in love and they are not able to decide. To be or not to be. NOT ABLE TO @#$%^N DECIDE???!!! Compounded their problems was the fact that there was always some 'ehsaan' from the 'friendz family' usually the girl's. This plotline was everywhere, Saajan, Dil to paagal hai, Kuch kuch hota hai, even the iconic Dil chahta hai.

Love Aaj Kal takes this stupidity even further. A day after their marriage, on their honeymoon, Vikram(played by Rahul Khanna, I hope he was handsomely paid) is left in the honeymoon suite by the bride Meera(Deepika) who wanders off in search of X boyfriend Jai(Saif). Meera darling here, is apparently 'still in the 90s mode'. She has been unable to decide yet again, the previous occasion being the day of the wedding, right before the pheras and after the jaimala. Phew!!!

B grade romantic comedies in Hollywood like 27 Dresses and Made of Honor are able to convey what Director Imtiaz Ali tries so hard to convey and falters miserably. So there are cliches(pyaar ek baar hi hota hai, she is the one - you don't know yet) and the mother of all - Meera is waiting in puraani Dilli for Jai dear in the end because 'woh apni galti maan ke waapas aayega'. GAWD!!!

The best part of Jab we met and Socha na tha was the breezy dialogue and what you get here is downright corny and unbelievable. Sample this from Jai in conversation with Vikram - Yaar, ho jaata hai, sab plan kar ke break up kiya tha, ab kya karun?

Deepika looks great but fails to deliver her dialogues properly, Saif plays Saif, the guy who is always confused, just like in Salaam Namaste, just like in Hum Tum, just like in Yeh Dillagi....etc etc. He is unconvincing as the young Rishi Kapoor. Rishi Kapoor is so-so, not having much to say. His love interest, the brazilian model, is cute and subtle. The song placement is awkward and the screenplay is confusing.

Love Aaj Kal tries to be both modern and conservative and therein lies its biggest flaw. And it makes Ghajini look better.