Jab Harry Met Sejal

 

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The big question is why? Shahrukh still tries to play the DDLJ hangover Europe settled Desi from Punjab. Why does the camera focus on zoomed-in shahrukh’s nose when the movie is shot in beautiful European locations? Why does imtiaz ali – who is a master when it comes to creating complex mind blowing characters like Geet of Jab we met or Jordan of rockstar or Veera of Highway – create such a unbelievable, over the top and superficial characters like Harry and Sejal ? Why do shahrukh still think that with his quivering whispering voice he can still floor the audience?

This time on there is ‘wheat field hand caressing’ immortal scene of the gladiator as well.

Harry (Harinder Singh Nehra) is a tour guide by day and a womanizer by….well rest of the time that he is not tour guiding. Sejal is a Gujrati girl who is engaged to someone else and has lost her ring. With this premise Harry and Sejal travel almost entire Europe without addressing the elephant in the room. The Elephant being why Anushka agreed to do this movie.

In the entire movie there is absolutely no editing. The story is unbelievably weak and acting by the lead pair is totally over the top. Surprisingly Chandan Roy Sanyal as the bad guy is refreshing; rest of the cast selection is as ordinary, Mukesh Chhabra is the casting director who has done PK, Dangal, Gangs of Wasseypur, etc to name a few feather on his casting cap. Even Pritam fails to impress in the music department.

This entire venture is like few talented people have come together and got in each other’s way and as a result the audience gets to endure the 2 Hours and 24 minutes venture.

Verdict – Why ?

 

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Mubarkan

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The first question that arises here is – what Mubarkan has to offer which Judwaa, Duplicate, Ram aur Shyam, Seeta aur Geeta and even Rowdy Rathore could not offer. The answer to this question is simply – nothing.

The story is predictable, slapstick comedy is boring, the narration is ordinary, and editing is non-existent. The movie has an official runtime of 2 Hours and 36 minutes. With the kind of content, it could have been wrapped up within the 2 Hours. Ileana D Cruz, Athiya shetty just sits pretty and almost does nothing. In fact, Neha Sharma has a far more confident screen presence than both the leading ladies. Arjun Kapoor does his best. The effort that is put in by Arjun is visibly seen. After ‘half girlfriend’ and this – he is desperate for a hit performance. Anil Kapoor has floored his character as usual. He nails it as the eccentric, go-happy uncle. Ratna Pathak Shah and Pavan Malhotra are impressive as well.

Anees Bazmee is the same guy who got the ball rolling in ‘Welcome’. He has come a long way down from there. Rajesh Chawla is the writer and before this he has written four other movies which has flopped and fifth time also does not seem to work.

The Soundtrack boasts of big names like Sonu Nigam, Armaan Malik, Tulsi Kumar, Vishal Dadlani and other stalwarts but the only song that works is ‘hawa hawa’ by Mika Singh. Rest all songs are to be played as background music at dead parties.

Verdict – No, we refuse compare Arjun kapoor with a potato and yes, thankfully Sanjay kapoor has a guest appearance – twice.

 

Bahubali – the Conclusion

Jai Maheshwati!

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The first thing that one has talk about this 2 Hrs 47 min feature film is the visual spectacle it showcases. The sets are so spell bounding that Sanjay leela Bhansali should enrol for a crash course with SS Rajamouli. The dancer movements, battle formations and even the daily court sessions are so perfectly in synchronization that the person with the highest OCD like Monica will approve.

The plot takes up from exactly the point where it left of in the part-1. The expected cast reprise their respective characters in the sequel. About 90% of the story is in the flashback so Devasena (Anushka) is shown in her youth. Rest of the characters are differentiated by their facial hair colour from the 1st part. Everyone have black hair, black beard and some of them even black heart. Rana Daggubati have worked super hard on his body to build those muscles which have been given the screen space for the entire 12 seconds of the movie.

The plot is so detail oriented that even a fly cannot get in, editing is very tight. Prabhas dominates the entire screen space in most of the shots and his absence is very strongly felt in the sequences he is absent. Special mention of brilliant acting by industry veterans like Nassar (as the handicapped father) and National Award winner Satyaraj (Katappa of course!) and the large angry eyes of Ramya Krishnan (Rajmata Sivagami devi)

Ok, agreed that this is an era movie but the over the top unbelievable VFX graphics becomes annoying after the 1st few times of – Oh really, he broke that? or Oh really, he jumped that? But overall the cinematic experience is quite good especially if you are watching in 4K Ultra HD enabled theatres. The song Hamsa Naava features a flying ship (this is not a spoiler!) with exceptional cloud swan animations which would easily put pirates of the Caribbean ship graphics to shame. Interesting trivia is that the title song – Saahore Baahubali major portion is sung by Daler Mehndi himself.

Watch the movie for everything – the plot twist, the action, the graphics, the songs and not just to get the answer for that one question that’s haunting you for the last 2 years.

Verdict – Yes! The movie answers the question and its totally worth it.

Naam Shabana

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Its good to know that like marvel & DC even Indian movies are getting into origin stories. The familiar characters portrayed in BABY (2015) resurface again minus Rana Daggubati who is busy with Bahubali2 release.

There is no doubt that Naam shabana is a no non-sense kick ass action thriller. The story starts with establishing the normalcy of the college going Shabana with a past. Manoj Bajpayee as the handler and recruiter is near perfect. The supporting cast include familiar faces including Anupam Kher and his ridiculous wig playing Shukla. Of course Akshay kumar had to be a part of this movie, how else would you establish the making of BABY-2 which I am quite sure is already in Neeraj Pandey’s pipeline.

The direction is handled by Shivam Nair. Shivam nair is more famous in the TV circuit. His notable contribution was ‘Sea Hawks’ of the 90s in DD Metro. But Neeraj Pandey has kept the Production, writing & screenplay to himself. Prithviraj Sukumaran plays the suave arms dealer, being the main baddie he could have been given more screen space as he is brilliant when it comes to negative roll (Kana Kandaen – 2006 tamil movie) and also can hold his own (Aurangzeb – 2013, Hindi)

Tapsee herself is absolutely fantastic; it’s difficult to acknowledge anything other than her when she is on screen. Her transformation from South masala movie heroine to character roles likes Pink and now this is truly mind blowing, The plot is tight, screenplay is crisp, the song ‘Zubi Zubi’remix is foot tapping. The action choreography is realistic along with the actors themselves.

A bit more editing to bring the entire movie under 2 hours would have made it more watchable. The climax mission could have been a bit detailed whereas the prep could have been cut shorter. As a result the execution is not that great

Verdict – If you liked BABY in 2015, you will like this as well

Dangal

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There is a reason Amir Khan is called a perfectionist. Ignoring all the comments about Amir’s weight Dangal is a brilliant piece of art.

This is the biography of struggle by Mahavir Singh Phogat and his two daughters. A national level wrestler himself in his prime years Mahavir decides to realize his dreams through his daughters. This movie is crude, realistic and a tad bit rustic. The entirety of 2 Hours and 41 minutes the audience sits with rapt attention. Everything is just perfect – the severity, the comic relief, the emotion, even the local Haryanvi dialect spoken.

The hardwork put in by the girls is seen in plain sight, the sport choreography is very realistic and not even one song is out of place. Both girls Fathima Sana Shaikh and Sanya Malhotra are excellent casting discovery. Sakshi Tanwar as the silent, caring but helpless mother of four girls is brilliant.

Once again Amitabh Bhattacharya lyrics are very deep and Pritam hits the right notes. Title Song is by ‘Daler Mehandi’ and is pure brilliance (reminds a bit of rang de basanti title song) ‘Dhaakad’ by ‘Raftaar’ is also quite refreshing.

In conclusion – After a long time such a beautiful movie is on screen which has such a microscopic eye for detail, the first half has the energy of ‘Chak De India’ and the second half has the struggle of ‘Saala Khadoos’ but leaps and bounds better execution than either of these movies.

Verdict – haven’t booked the tickets yet?

 

 

Befikre

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Yes, Befikre is definitely a love story.

Set in the beautiful city of Paris the story shuttles between the 1 year gap showing the relashionship-development between Dharam and Shyra. The flashback and present transitions are signified by hum-tum style drawings and feels a bit unnecessary to the screenplay.

Dharam is a stand-up comic from Delhi recently arrived in Paris and Shyra is a free-spirited girl brought up in France by her Indo-French chef parents. The relationship starts with a dare and the free-spirit modern attitude is portrayed quite effectively.

The cast and crew have quite a few French involvements and the lead actors have adopted their characters very well. When it comes to the intimate scenes both look at ease and the onscreen chemistry is pleasant to watch. The director is very seasoned in love stories and hence is almost flawless, editing is very efficient. Music by Vishal-Shekhar duo along with Mikey McCleary is quite refreshing.(BTW…Mickey is the Brother in Law of Lucky Ali) ‘Nashe Si Chad Gayi’ by Arijit and ‘Ude Dil Befikre’ by Benny Dayal are already topping the charts. The surprise number ‘khulke dhulke’ by Punjabi Rock-star Gippy Grewal has turned out quite good.

Both the lead pair can dance quite well and has done justice to all the peppy songs

In conclusion this is a feel good love story which reminds you of ‘love aaj kal’, ‘Friends with benefits’ and maybe a bit of ‘The ugly truth’.

Verdict – Watch it – Befikar

Rock On 2

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RockOn was released in 2008 which was directed by Abhishek Kapoor. The main reason for its success was the fiery rebel music and the story itself and of course the smart direction. But RockOn2 is a complete contrast. The director was changed, glamour added to the cast and of course the entire movie genre became different. This is no longer a musical journey instead this is a complete masala movie with too many boring songs.

Aditya (Farhan Akhtar) and his husky voice both relocate to Meghalaya and that’s not for the scenery alone. Joe (Arjun Rampal) is now a successful (read wealthy) club owner and reality show host with a bad haircut and KD (Purab kohli) is narrator of the movie taking time out from his…..wait what is his job again ? no clue. Anyway, so enter Shraddha Kapoor with utmost confidence which is the same expression she gave in ‘ek villian’

Direction is pointless as the best moments of the movie are ruined by bad camera. Sometimes it is way too zoomed in and at other times it is microscopic zoomed out. Shraddha Kapoor does not look as good as you expect with every frame zoomed to her nose or her long forehead (seriously? I hadn’t noticed her forehead before).

In this five years’ flash-back/flash forward storyline the screenplay could have made a lot of difference but was completely wasted just like Prachi Desai looking clueless with another bad haircut.

The songs are long and just refuse to get over. Only the “Hoi Kiw/Chalo Chalo” by Usha Uthup and SummerSalt Band showed some promise. The best song still is the Rock On title track from the original movie.

In conclusion, as said before this is a masala movie which has all elements for a flop and the humanitarian angle is unappealing. The music is soddy and the beautiful Indian locations are not capitalized.

Verdict – Rock Off.