Thursday, March 17

The Casting Ouch

this time, involving Khosla ka Ghosla and Love, Sex or Dhokha director and adman Dibakar Bannerjee.

My Review - Tanu Weds Manu

I don't like Kangana Ranaut. I don't think she has a great dressing sense. And I totally hate that voice. Then the question is why? 

Well the trailer was promising. 

Okay the trailer seemed rocking. 

And I got swayed by 'Sanskar saare U.P waale hain hamari gudiya main' and Kanpur and Lucknow and so on.

TWM starts on a promising note. Dr Manu(Madhavan) arrives from London to India and is whisked away by his family and Pappi(Deepak Dobriyal of Omkaara, Gulaal and Dilli 6 fame)to meet a prospective bride aka Tanu(Kangana). Our innocent Dr Saab falls in love with this girl who rejects him in her own words and says - Abe kitni aag hai. Soyi hui ladki ko pasand kar liya. Tumse milne ke liye maine char neend ki goliyan or teen quarter vodka lagaye they. Fate, in this case the script, makes them meet again at a common friend's marriage.

Clearly suffering from a severe Jab We Met hangover, TWM has an engaging and interesting first half with the highlight being the chemistry between Manu and Pappi and the dialogues. The film looses steam in the second half with the script heading nowhere and in the words of Rajeev Masand, the lead characters turning into caricatures. A special mention for Eijaz Khan, who plays Manu's friend Jassi and new comer Swara Bhaskar, who plays Jassi's wife Payal. Both of them do their bits perfectly and are among the better things in this film along with Deepak Dobriyal. Madhavan carries one expression throughout and Kangana's character Tanu comes off as selfish and cunning instead of looking gullible and naive. 

Dissappointing! Catch it on DVD!

Wednesday, March 16

My Review - The Kids are All Right

The Kids Are All Right is essentially a story of a family involving a lesbian couple, Nic(Annette Bening) and Jules(Julianne Moore) and their children - 16 year-old son Laser and 18 year-old daughter Joni. Nic is the stricter of the two and the 'father' of the family in a way while Jules is more open, the 'mother' who stays at home and owns a landscape design(read gardening) business. Both Nic and Jules are called Mom by their children (:-P) and have become mothers using the same sperm donor, Paul(Mark Ruffalo). 

It so happens that Laser wants to meet his biological Dad so he takes the help of his sister as he is a minor. This gives Mark an opportunity to meet both his children and 'enter' the family as such. The story takes a twist when Mark and Jules start having a secret affair. Also, as the kids start start spending more time with Mark, Nic becomes increasingly insecure of Mark being a control freak that she is. What happens next forms the crux of the story. 

Annette Bening is brilliant as the insecure and cynical Nic and Ruffalo is fantastic as the laid back and unassuming Mark. Julianne Moore does a great job as Jules swinging between her frustration in her 'marriage' with Nic and her fling with Mark. The kids are cute and they play their roles well. One of the best scenes of the film are when Mark comes to their home for the first time for lunch and when Jules addresses the family admitting her mistake.

A very 'real' film with real characters committing real mistakes. Don't miss it!

P.S. - At the end, I was left wondering when will Annette Bening win an Oscar. This was her fourth nomination. Sigh :-(

P.S. - The tagline for this film is absolutely SPOT ON!!! 

Friday, March 11

My Review - The King's Speech

A film that has to be seen from start to finish in one go. An underdog story in a way. Yeah, I know. Hollywood obsession!!! But the underdog here is a King, George VI, played brilliantly by Colin Firth, with all the right qualities except that he stammers and a King can't do that. Not certainly in an age where 'Kings have to invade the homes of their countrymen' via the radio and 'not just look respectable in a uniform and not fall of a horse'. And this is just the early 1900s, mind you :-P. 

Enter Lionel Logue(Geoffrey Rush), an Australian speech therapist, with methods that are unorthodox and controversial. There are twists and turns subsequently and a final speech which King George VI has to deliver to the nation, needless to say, with Lionel's help.

Your heart goes out to the King as he stumbles, stutters and stammers throughout the film, feeling helpless and humiliated, to his wife who patiently supports him come what may and to his countrymen who are looking for hope and direction. Our very own Bhansali could take some pointers as to how to portray suffering in a dignified manner.

You can see why The King's Speech swept the Oscars. What worked for me was a great cast, fine performances, great setting, some brilliant camerawork and finally the uber snobbish British Accent. Colin Firth is brilliant(Did I say that already?) and Geoffrey Rush is a revelation as the speech therapist. I don't recall having seen any of his films(not a fan of the Pirates Series) but he is simply wonderful in this film as Lionel Logue. I thought he was better than Firth. The conversations between George II and Lionel are the highlight of the film. Helena Bonham Carter also chips in with a fine performance.

Highly recommended!