Badrinath Ki Dulhania Movie Review: An average story with a great message and lots of laughter

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Movies are a great emanation for making people aware about the issues ubiquitous everywhere and not just for entertainment and this film doesn’t fall short of that. Women empowerment and abolishment of dowry system are the issues elucidated and infested through this film in a very light manner. Inspite of such sturdy messages, the camaraderie of Varun Dhawan and Alia Bhatt succeeds in getting the audience laugh on their punches.

Story, Screenplay and dialogues:

When it comes to romantic movies, the story has always been, the boy meeting the girl and they falling  in love and enduring the perseverance of either, the society or family and then the happy ending. How this movie differs is the circumstances under which the two meet. More than the story, the screenplay has elevated the performance of the film.

Every now and then, a punch is thrown at the exact moment when the audience may feel weary from the message that the film has to offer. The tone of the dialogues and the accent of Uttar Pradesh is a real charm and a welcoming chortle.

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Direction and Star Performances:

Shashank Khaitan who started off his career with Humpty Sharma Ki Dulhania has improved a lot. He has not only worked on the direction, story and script of its predecessor but also this film and if you’ve seen this latest work, then you would agree that, it goes without saying this film is far better than the last one.

Alia Bhatt in Student of the year was very lame. But since then, she has galloped quickly. She has become one of the best young actors in Bollywood and it reflects in this film. Her character Vaidehi meaning, Sita, wife of Lord Ram, in Sanskrit, is very inspiring and often breaks the trend. She is the real protagonist in this film.

Varun Dhawan as Badrinath, is a maverick person, but due to the constraint of basic education, cannot match the intellectual level of Alia Bhatt. He has done exceedingly well.

Sahil Vaid sharing a greater screen space than other actors, gives a sturdy performance. Other good performances came from Shweta Prasad, Yash Sinha and the person whose name is nowhere available, who played Vaidehi’s sister.

The Last Word:

It’s a good film, if you’re going for the laughter and the strong message, but a predictable story ruins the fun. Nevertheless, laughter packed, good cinematography, a great screenplay and dialogues, make up for the gaffes. But if you’re looking for a bit of action, beasts jostling each other and a great editing, then go for Kong: Skull Island.

My Rating: 3.5/5

 

 

Commando 2 Movie Review: The trail leads nowhere

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What’s Good: Vidyut Jammwal’s knack to perform stunts.

What’s Bad: Almost everything other than the action. The melodramatic dialogues and a tedious plot.

Watch or Not?: You can watch this when it airs on television. There’s nothing great about the action or acting in this film.

Commando 2 stars Vidyut Jammwal (Karan) as a commando, Freddy Daruwala (Bhaktawar), Adah Sharma (Bhavna Reddy) as cops assigned to arrest Vicky Chadda, a money launderer in Thailand.

The movie opens with Vidyut Jammwal, single-handedly beating thugs on a mission, which leads him to Vicky Chadda. He teams up with Freddy and Adah Sharma to put Vicky Chadda behind bars. Freddy and Vidyut cannot see eye to eye for no reason and Adah is just stupid with her Hyderabadi accent, who apparently is an encounter specialist and runs around her target foolishly, just to kill him from point blank distance.

Direction & Writing:

A good name in the industry such as Deven Bhojani, conjuring such a bland comes as a shock. An action movie needs to be adroit with crisp dialogues. This movie lacks the pace to be an action flick. It seems anyone can write an action movie these days. You just have to follow Bollywood movies and think that an archetypal story will suffice.

With dialogues like, “Mere haath pair toh toh khud mere orders nahi mante”, “Zinda rekhke konsa swach bharat ka zhanda uthane wala tha yeh?” or “Next time tum aisa kuch karenga na, toh mein bol rahi mereko jabardasta pyaar ho jayenga tumharese aur mein hoton pe chapka dungi ek do”, a film can only look so crass.

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Star Performances:

When it comes to action, there’s no one better than Vidyut Jammwal. But with his countenance, he only comes off as a person with no emotions.

Adah Sharma is a peculiar encounter specialist with a Hyderabadi accent. if her character was to evoke fun, then she has succumbed to do so.

Esha Gupta, Shefali Shah, Suhail Nayyar form an average cast. There was a lot of anticipation from Thakur Anoop Singh and as a debutant, he does well.

The Last Word:

You feel lucky when you realize there’s no song in the movie, but then you hear “Commando” every time Vidyut moves. Commando 2 is a very formulaic film, with bad acting and dialogues. If you want to endure 2 long hours then watch it for yourself.

My Rating: 2.5/5

Fifty Shades Darker Novel Review: The novel might not intrigue you but this review might.

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Even after the terrible start to series I decided to read Fifty Shades because I thought there was some mystery in the novel and I had to know what happened to Anastasia.  I try not to admit it, but it was also the fun factor which reeled me in.

To be quite literal with this one, Salman Khan wouldn’t beat people this many times, Jason Statham wouldn’t fire as many bullets in a movie as the number of times Grey and Ana have sex.

Bad writing style made me a little dizzy, as at least giving this novel a bad rating will rejuvenate me. This novel was as bad as its predecessor, Fifty Shades of Grey. It was still a fast read, don’t get me wrong, but badass Grey was lacking in the novel, maybe because he didn’t get to tie up Ana as much as he wanted.

The novel starts where the prequel left off, Ana dashing out of his playroom. The twitching palm of Christian Grey continues to twitch, but doesn’t get the necessary fuel (spanking, that is).

The dialogues and the phrases used are unintentionally funny, like the very first sentence:

“He’s come back. Mommy’s asleep or she’s sick again.” You really can’t help but laugh at it. And we begin with a prologue of Christian Grey having a nightmare regarding his childhood memory. It’s kind of awkward when you’re faced with, “You are one fucked up bitch”, six times in a row on the very first page.

We catch up with Ana, where now she is working as an Assistant at SIP publishing House. After a lot of whining of the likes of, “Have I really broken up with Christian Grey?”, “Is it really over between us?” and shit. Christian swoops in at the first opportunity with yet another proposition, and well, Ana is back into relationship with him. A lot happens between the pages, none of which is truly intriguing and the book ends with Ana saying yes to Christian’s marriage proposal after having sex or before. I don’t exactly remember. They have sex many times, you’ve got to understand.

Sex scenes are very insipid, more precisely, their content. Christian flashes Ana a look, Ana bites her lower lip, his eyes darken (I think he has an eye problem) and says, “You’re biting your lip again” (Oh God! Like she didn’t know), everything south of Ana’s waist paralyses under his gaze, some undressing ensues, he establishes that she looks beautiful or beguiling, he kisses, sucks, nips, licks and Ana, who has been passive, all of a sudden explodes. Seriously, this woman needs to improve her track record.

The worst moment after sex is, Christian always up on top of Ana after his release and Ana looses consciousness after orgasm!!? Christian elevates from “fucking” to “love making” which is kind of soothing as it does the much needed romantic ambience to the wane looking novel, Christian looses his rage-inducing, all domineering look all of a sudden.

EL James’ understanding of discussion is that, if they’re into an argument, Christian Grey gazes at Ana, she’s disarmed, when he touches her, she melts and when he has sex with her, and the discussion is over.

What’s more is, they have sex after every few pages. I mean, you’re going to make them have sex, at least have the courtesy to describe it in a better way. I was literally left with the same stuff to read for at least 15 times. My God! Think about the poor souls who’re still chaste, they might get turned off, forever.  EL James has dealt with the whole story in a tacky way and what’s worse is the poor execution. This isn’t even a love story, when it’s brimming with just the carnal pleasure.

You know what’s nauseous? Ana whining about how she has spent the past week. In one scene she’s like,

Christian: “Stay with me a moment. Taylor wants us to wait while the crowd disperses.”

Ana: (thinks) Oh.

Christian: “I think that fireworks display probably aged him a hundred years.”

Ana: “Doesn’t he like fireworks?”

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I’m like, “WTF did you just say?” Funniest part is when,

“Christian gazes down at me fondly and shakes his head but doesn’t elaborate.”

Christian be like, “Oh honey, if you weren’t so hot and hadn’t said yes, I’d be taking you in Charlie Tango (helicopter) and push you from above.”

The incident at the rear end of the novel with Elena was unnecessary and could have been avoided, doing no harm to the story. (Assuming that there was room for that “harm”.) EL James got caught up in the execution by accommodating thrilling moment to conjure a perfect moment.

The twist, more precisely, the clandestine at the end seems another poor archetypal effort to fill up the void. The theme for the next novel seems clear from the end of this novel.

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As a result of all of the above, all I have for EL James is no obeisance as a writer.

My Rating: 1/5.

Word Count: 
“Oh my” – 47
“Crap” – 36
“Jeez” – 84
“Holy (shit/fuck/crap/hell/cow/moses)” – 124
“Whoa” – 30
“Gasp” – 44
“Gasps” – 17
“Sharp Intake of Breath” – 5
“Murmur” – 91
“Murmurs” – 194
“Whisper” – 140
“Whispers” – 113
“Mutter” – 71
“Mutters” – 48
“Fifty” – 95
“Lip” – 47
“Inner goddess” – 58
“Subconscious” – 59

Te3n Movie Review:

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Can you relate yourself when I tell you someone is playing bang-bang and then, at first, all the blood rushing through their body, all that effort being rewarded for and all of a sudden they realise exuding less force within? Well, that’s exactly how this movie was, but get out of the earlier context.

A case of kidnapping, a troubled grandfather with the determination of finding the kidnapper follows a trail till he meets the convicted.

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The movie starts off in the present and the scenes from the past are revealed with great directorial care. The likes of Bijesh Jayarajan of ‘Yudh’ fame and Suresh Nair meant a complete package of thrill and mystery. Following Kahaani’s huge success in screenplay, this film too had the same enigma following around.

Directing was of the top notch, may be a par better than the writing considering the figment of imagination put forth by the story writers. The first half was the epitome of graceful and refined conglomeration of directing and cinematography.

When I think of Amitabh Bachchan, all I can perceive is simplicity; elegant simplicity. Age is no bar for this great actor. He makes each expression his own feeling.

Talking about simplicity and great acting, Nawazuddin Siddiqui and Vidya Balan are not far behind. Nawaz’s acute and sharp performance coupled with Balan’s captivating act take away any second thoughts you’re having about watching this film.

Suffice it to say that this movie has all it’s bearings in place. But an archetypal trend in the last four years of Bollywood films makes it all, a little déjà vu. I was constantly thinking of Jazbaa, which is, on so many levels, an alike movie. Another movie would be Wazir, which was released earlier this year, exhibited a very similar framework of the story and the twists in this movie were almost as if pried off from Wazir.

maxresdefaultThe Last Word:

Inspite of all of the above going on, I’m pleased with the film, not so with the climax. Having said that, strong and compelling performances of the three musketeers, a great host of background music, along with nail biting mystery makes this film a good finish.

My Rating: 3.5/5

If you haven’t watched the trailer, here’s the link:

 

50 Shades Of Grey Novel Review

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When a novel is classified under a certain genre you start reading it, expecting it to be exactly that. But as far as 50 Shades of Grey and EL James are concerned, the said rule doesn’t apply to them. But then again, EL James didn’t really bother herself with the writing much, as long as sex lingered in the pages of this so called roamance-erotic novel.

When Anastasia Steele conducts the interview of the multi-millionaire Christian Grey, she gets smitten with his ruggedly handsome looks and gets fascinated by him. Christian Grey’s stalking skills allow him to find Ana and offer her an agreement and she falls for his arrangement. But as she spends more time (for lack of a better word) with Christian Grey, she learns that he is tormented by his past. As the novel reaches it’s climax, because of lack of understanding and for the need to have more, Ana finally breaks up with him.

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If you’re not familiar with the basic concepts of BDSM, the events in the novel may appear bizzare. However, the most pivotal aspect of the novel is not exhibited properly in the novel that is, of course the language. Any and every novel, irrespective of what the content is or for whom it’s intended to, demands a certain caliber writing. As we dive in to read the pages of this particular novel, you come across the manner of language that is incongruous, incoherent and repetitive. And that is not just bound to the kind of language but also to the content involved.

Most of the romantic novels always eloquently describe the sensual interactions between the protagonists and Fifty Shades of Grey wasn’t an exception. But when it got to a level when there was nothing else but those two engaging in coitus time after time, regardless to say, it was creepy, monotonus and in a way verbose, almost as if EL James had nothing else other than their sexual encounters to show for.

There were just a few moments, that got me going. Ana’s persistant efforts to show Christian that he could open up to her and her little negotiations to pry the information out of him, these and a couple more moments piqued my interest.

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The creepy agreement instead of a free flow love story was a big let down for me. Why is it bad? Because, its just a fancy name for prostitution, except the fact that she wasn’t getting paid in money. But apart from that, it curbed a good setting which the novel got at the inception and of course restrained the characters to have any romantic involvement with each other. It was utterly unromantic (I don’t know who suggested 50 Shades be classified as a romantic novel) and more about carnal pleasures.

The Last Word:

I want to see Christian and Ana have a normal relationship in the sequels, but somehow I know Christian is going to f**k, not make love, which is the least romantic and the most repelling thing for me. Though there’s so much bad in the novel, the mystery is still eating me up and I’d still give it a go, as long as it doesn’t creep me out.

My Rating: 1.5/5

Angels and Demons Novel Review

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I didn’t quite like the Angels and Demons the way I expected to. But that’s all right, when you read all about how Illuminati symbols are engraved on the chest of the cardinals and then executed using the same element of science. Robert Langdon has to stop these four killings and a bomb (antimatter) which is ticking, somewhere concealed in the Vatican City, by following an intricate trail using his expertise in symbology.

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A mystery-thriller, but it’s more than just your ordinary detective stories. It has one of the good old, Science vs. Religion debates to offer. This novel demands to be looked at seriously because, the setting of the novel accentuates the accomplishments and failures, the strong points and flaws of both, the science and the religion. As far as India and Hinduism is concerned, each individual needs to strictly follow some of the proud creeds mentioned in this notable work by Dan Brown.

The novel is gripping and well acclaimed by the readers around the world and the content and the virtuoso of the author speak for it. Apart from the mystery which is the major feature of this novel, I did find the few moments between Robert and Vittoria quite intriguing. Dan has quite adroitly explored the personality of Robert Langdon, which adds up to make the novel more captivating.

The Last Word:

Dan has surely written a robust mystery-thriller, but we also need to ruminate on the essence of the religion before we overlook its importance. Quite a cliffhanger, protruding most mystery-thrillers, because of the addition of symbology, the killings, Illuminati, Camerlengo’s character and the amalgamation of science and religion. The only flaw I realized was the length of the novel. It could have been less.

My Rating: 4.5/5

Sarbjit Movie Review: A cry for help

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From Omung Kumar, the director of much appreciated Mary Kom, comes a movie about an ordinary farmer from Bhikiwind, Punjab who under the influence of alcohol crosses the Indo-Pak border and is incarcerated in Pakistan for 23 years, being mistaken for an Indian spy. The film emphasizes on the plight of Sarabjit Singh and the hardships faced by his family, especially his sister, Dalbir Kaur.

The tone of the movie is a notch higher in terms of the intensity as compared to Mary Kom. Randeep Hooda starring as Sarabjit, brings out the predicaments of the man who is wrongly convicted for bombings in Lahore and Faisalabad. As the movie is narrated from the perspective of his sister, it rules out the possibility of him being a spy which the unconfirmed sources from RAW agree to disagree.

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Apart from the various controversies the story (real life story) has faced, the screenplay, dialogues and acting uplift the movie to a great extent. The screenplay goes in detail exploring the life of Sarabjit’s struggle to maintain sanity, Dalbir’s fight to bring her brother back and his wife’s and daughters’ disturbance at keeping Sarabjit’s memory alive.

Aishwarya Rai Bachchan’s zealous and invigorating performance will surely dwell in your mind and remind you of your elder protective sister. Randeep Hooda as Sarabjit was captivating, profound and gave a stellar performance. His camaraderie with Aishwarya Rai was terrific in spite of her being his sister in the film. Richa Chadha has always been one of the best actors of Bollywood. Even the performance by Ankita Shrivastav and Shiwani Saini as Sarabjit’s daughters conveyed the intended effect.

The Last Word:

Omung Kumar in his dirctorial has immensly outplayed the boundary of Sarbjit being a boring and a tedious movie. He gives a great message through this film. Currently 403 Indians and 278 Pakistanis are in imprisonment between the countries, many of them mistaken for being a spy. Our responsibility is to not let anyone mislead us and to trust our conscience.

My Rating: 4/5.