I'm going to make this a fairly short review since the movie speaks for itself:
Piku, directed by Shoojit Sircar, is a heart-warming story that revolves around Bhashkor Banerjee (Amitabh Bachchan ) and his daughter, Piku (Deepika Padukone) and their daily bikering & laugh-worthy arguments surrounding Bhashkor's bout with hypochondria. While on a roadtrip from Delhi to Calcutta to deal with an old property issue , the father-daughter duo are unexpectedly accompanied by Rana Choudhary (Irrfan Khan) and just when you think the movie couldn't get any funnier, it does.
Fabulous casting and equally amazing performances. Seriously, kudos to the casting director for appointing such amazing talent (for the leads & supporting cast) to so aptly fit into the movie's characters.
Things to look out for: The loud yet endearing relationship between Piku and her father , the subtle chemistry between Rana and Piku, the roadtrip, the hilarious conversations between Bhashkor and Piku's aunt (Moushumi Chatterjee) , how absolutely beautiful Deeps looked in every scene, and all the Bengali!
I was slightly apprehensive to view this flick after watching the trailer, since the whole plot revolves around a topic that is not really "my cup of tea". So when I went last weekend, I caught myself looking away several times because some scenes became a little uncomfortable (don't worry, nothing inappropriate). However, I thoroughly enjoyed it and I'm sure you all will love it as well!
I'm going to make this a fairly short review since the movie speaks for itself:
VERDICT: This movie is khoob bhalo! Do give it a watch :)
Before I get into this movie review, couple notes of caution:
I love December for many reasons:
1) The year is almost ending so time to wrap up any unfinished business
2) CHRISTMAS--or Vishnumas for all the Gupta families (heh)
3) All the usual yet wonderful holiday happenings
4) Aamir mamu's new movie (YES)
So coming to my fourth point, I'm always buzzing with excitement when Aamir (Khan) makes his annual announcement of his new movie that usually releases mid-December. I manage to go see his new releases in theaters within the next few days and walk out with a positive review in mind (3 Idiots, Talaash, Dhoom 3). Call me biased but I almost feel like he can do no wrong. So when the promos of PK started popping up, who could possibly stop me from getting excited?!
Directed by Rajkumar Hirani, the actual story is quite simple. Alien lands on Earth for a research mission and plans to go back to his own planet shortly after. When they showed that PK (Aamir) is an alien, my first thought was, "uh oh, this better not be a Jadoo situation all over again". And when they showed Jaggu (Anushka Sharma) as a reporter, I then wondered, "uh oh, this seems a little like the Krrish and PC situation". But when they showed PK's face-off and adamant interrogation against God and its disciples, I then confirmed in my head "uh oh, this is precisely what happens in OMG". HOWEVER, despite the multiple similarities, PK manages to pull through and stand on its own. Why? Because the movie features plenty of funny moments and leaves you questioning many things that you've grown up learning. With religion being the biggest backdrop of the movie, PK takes us through his journey of trying so desperately hard to not only find, but to understand the concept of God itself. For us humans, everything that we do seems quite normal to us but from PK's perspective, everything is definitely not what it seems.
Performances: Aamir shines as per usual and you can see the dedication he put in all these months. He's an adorable alien with so many questions that will eventually stump you beyond belief. At one point in the movie, it felt like I was watching an episode of Satyamev Jayate (no complaints of course) so it felt nice to be reminded of what a tremendous actor he is. I know he's been getting a lot of flak lately, what with his poster (see first image above) but I honestly don't know what the big deal is. Watch the movie and you'll understand why he's naked...no biggie. Aamir mamu has always managed to win everyone over with his performances and as PK, he ensures he still does the same. Anushka Sharma pleasantly surprised me in this movie. The role she essayed really really suited her well and she pulled it off with ease. I wasn't the biggest fan of hers from her first movie, but I honestly liked her in PK. Her outfits were so cute and I love what she did with her hair (more so at promotional events than in the movie, but she looks lovely)! The ensemble cast of Sanjay Dutt, Boman Irani, and Saurabh Shukla did well in their characters too, so good for them! Special mention to Sushant Singh Rajput for his small yet significant role as Sarfaraz (he looked really good on-screen).
Songs were oookay, nothing that really caught on but you could still listen to them without shuddering so you don't have to worry about that. I personally liked the first half better than the second half and I'm sure you will see why once y'all go watch the movie yourselves.
VERDICT: Expect some hilarious, cute, slightly cheesy and thought-provoking moments spread throughout the movie. After walking out of the theater, I can finally say #PKaaya
Before I begin, I just want to say, props to the Kapoor sisters for making the movie trend all over Twitter/FB/Instagram, you guys did well! Mmkay now let's talk about how #khoobsurat this movie turned out :]
Can't quite remember when the initial buzz for this movie started but I can tell you this much, I was pretty excited. I was eager for the movie to release for a multitude of reasons: 1) It was supposed to release on my birthday (Sept. 19th) so I already knew what I was going to be doing 2) Because who doesn't love a rom-com now and then? 3) We get to see the magic that Rhea, Sonam, and the rest of the crew translate once again on-screen 4) The delightful new addition of a Mr. Fawad Khan 5) Ratna Pathak Shah (Need I list more reasons?!)
So like I've already mentioned, I went ahead and watched Khoobsurat the evening it released here on my twentieth birthday! And what a treat it was. I didn't want to walk into the theaters expecting too much but I wanted to walk out knowing that this would be one of those movies that I'll occasionally watch whenever I get bored or when I'm in the mood for a "not-too-cheesy" chick-flick. And that's exactly what happened. Albeit a predictable plot-line, it's a rather sweet watch.
Dr. Milli Chakravarthy (Sonam Kapoor) is a happy-go-lucky twenty-something who's unapologetically goofy and has temporarily sworn off men. Vikram Singh Rathore aka Viku (Fawad Khan) is a disciplined royal Rajput prince, engaged and all set to marry within the next few months. Milli arrives at her new client's home (ahem, palace) only to find herself amongst strict rules and forbiddance against any dilly-dallying. In the process of helping Rathore senior (Viku's father) eventually get out of his wheelchair, Milli has several awkward occurrences with the young prince. But if you thought those initial meet-and-greets were awkward enough, you should wait for the conversations between "Ranisa" (Viku's mother) and Milli. Some moments I loved (without revealing too much of the storyline) are:
-The video chats with Milli's mom-Manju and the adorable friendship they seemed to share.
-The subtle ongoing romance between both Milli and Vikram, that they keep hidden from each other for most of the movie.
-The queen's disapproving looks and constant need for obedience and how Milli wriggles her way out of those situations.
As far as performances go, I feel like everyone carried everyone throughout the movie. Sonam's portrayal of Milli was on-point, both with her bubbly personality and her quirky wardrobe (loved her mirrored vest, too gorgeous). I know she gets a lot of flak for her acting skills but I can tell you this, Sonam has greatly improved and it definitely shows! Fawad looks and acts every bit of his royal on-screen character. To exude prince-like sophistication would be an understatement. Can't wait to see more of Mr. Khan! Kirron Kher playing Milli's mom, Manju, is at her usual Punjabi best. Ratna Pathak Shah (one of my all time favorites) again seemed to fit her role perfectly as Viku's mother and as the intimidating queen. Her saris/jewelry were so beautiful! The rest of the supporting cast did well too. It was nice to see that no one "over did" their parts.
Closing thoughts: Songs are catchy! I loved Engine Ki Seeti, Abhi Toh Party Shuru Hui Hai and Maa Ka Phone (especially when her phone rang at the dinner table). The palace is lovely! The glass room they show in one of the other palaces is particularly eye-catching. Wardrobe and costume styling for the cast is très bien.
VERDICT: If you're looking for a cute rom-com mixed with a royal backdrop set in one of the majestic palaces in *Rajasthan, do give Khoobsurat a watch. I can bet you'll soon be on the hunt for your very own prince & palace after watching this :)
*Coming soon under the TRAVEL tab
Mmkay, going to be completely honest here...I got excited to watch the movie because of Siddy boy (Sidharth Malhotra) and his rugged new look from the promos. Went with my parents for this one since they hadn't watched a movie in theaters in ages. So anyway, the movie (*MINOR SPOILER*) started off with Shraddha Kapoor being pushed out of a window and the plot unravels from the previous events to the present day and continues forward. If you're wondering who the villain is, you will hardly have to wonder since they show Riteish Deshmukh playing the negative role within the first 20-30 minutes of the movie plus if you watched the promos, you should've already saved his name in your memory bank. Now whether or not he remains the only villain (or the predominant one) is what you will have to watch and see for yourselves.
As far as performances are concerned, Siddy boy really pulled through and was perfect for an intense/brooding character. If any haters are reading this: he's far more handsome than you will ever be so shush! Riteish did well for himself as well, don't want to dive into his character too much as I would be revealing trivial parts of the plot. But he really proved that he can play negative shades so props to him! Shraddha's character was a tad annoying though, with her tendency to be over-hyper and slightly frivolous. But her wardrobe was colorful and "bohemian-chic" so that served as a form of compensation. Where the story was headed was pretty obvious to me but I still sat through the movie because to abandon Siddy boy halfway would be a sin!
So far this year, Ek Villain's soundtrack has got to be my favorite. And if you think the songs sound good through your headphones, try listening to the songs while watching the movie...that much more "feels".
VERDICT: Watch this movie if you're into semi-psychological thrillers, hunky men with a hidden sensitive side, and soulful music. You won't have a reason to complain (muhahaha you'll get it if you watch the movie).
**Note: Restrain from taking kids as the smile-y balloons might be misleading.
...Yes , I put the poster sideways so you could see Liam Neeson from a better angle, you're welcome. SO, watched this one with a couple of colleagues in May and I quite liked it. As you must be knowing by know, I'm a sucker for thrillers and Non-Stop was exactly that. Also, Liam Neeson was in it so how could I possibly not watch it? From the poster itself, you can guess that some crazy stuff is about to go down in the flight (pun intended) so if you're someone who feels queasy at the mere mention of sky-high traveling, stay away from this one! One of my friends who watched it with us was traveling the next morning, so you can imagine how freaked out she was.
It's one of those movies where you manage to use the power of elimination to figure out who the real villain is...but then as always, you end up guessing the wrong person. So the makers of this movie make sure that you're paying attention till the very end. Some characters were ridiculously annoying, but I'll let you guys figure out who they are when you watch it. Some were rather *interesting* (look out for the pilot wearing glasses)!
VERDICT: Does Liam play a terrorist? Is he some sort of Air Marshall? Or does he just fancy playing "hands-up"-seven-up with his toy gun? To find out for yourselves, do add it on to your list!
And yet another book turned into a movie. Huzza! I actually read this book when I was visiting India in 2012 after a friend's recommendation (yes you needed to know this information). Okay, let me just go ahead and say it. Chetan Bhagat is NOT god so please can everyone stop calling him the best Indian author of this century?! I have read his other books and they're okay so calm down people. 2 States wasn't all that bad though. But did the movie end up faring better than the book? Let's find out!
I honestly started out watching this movie not expecting much despite the rave reviews. However, I was pleasantly surprised. From the beautiful IIM Ahmedabad campus (can I somehow please go there soon) to Alia Bhatt's interesting depiction of your average modern Tamilian girl, I couldn't help but enjoy Dharma's latest venture. Although the movie was more about the two lead characters (well, what else is a rom-com about), I just felt like the campus stole the spotlight...at least for the first half of the movie.
Without going too much into the plot...*SPOILER* *I'M KIDDING* *You would already know this if you watched the trailer* ... 2 States is about two people studying in college, who fall in love and are from two different states! Not too much to digest, unless of course you were the characters in the movie, since they soon come to realize that falling in love is the easy part, but what comes after is ridiculous. Family feuds ensue and by the end, you're so desperate to see the two families come together that you just want to smack some sense into everyone to dial down all the miscommunication.
A couple of subtle laughs, a catchy soundtrack and boatload of stereotypes is the basic formula for 2 States and it managed to work out pretty well. In conclusion, if you leave behind your preconceived notions about the actors, the book and whatever else that might be holding you back from watching this movie, you'll find yourself actually enjoying it.
Verdict: Definitely give it a watch (especially if you're young and need advice in such situations...only kidding) and don't forget to put on those hipster glasses (à la Arjun Kapoor style) while you're at it, they make everything cooler!
I watched this movie 2 weeks ago in one of my classes (yes I get to watch movies in my class, be jealous) and I would be lying if I said that I would've gotten through the movie if Ryan Gosling wasn't in it. When my professor said he was in it, I made up my mind instantly that I would pay utmost attention.
Released in 2011 and directed by Nicolas Winding Refn, Drive is basically a crime thriller, which loosely translates to blood all over the screen plus bits of hanging suspense. LOVE the suspense/thriller part, it's the bloodshed that I'm not a huge fan of. Ryan plays a part-time car mechanic and a part-time crime-getaway driver and get this, his name throughout the movie is...Driver. So he's a link to bad guys and he's a good driver? Oh yeahhhh. Plenty of villains, one cute kid, one love interest and a dirty (but Ryan pulls it off quite well) scorpion jacket. Although I didn't particularly take a liking to some parts of the plot (because it slowed down in many places), the performances were indeed executed wonderfully.
VERDICT: If you like crime thrillers and Ryan Gosling or just Ryan, do watch it. It honestly wasn't half bad so add it on to your list!
My first movie review and I decided to do it on one of my absolute favorites: Wake Up Sid. Released in 2009, the movie got rave reviews as the first movie that "spoke to the youth". I only watched it last year in 2013 at a very crucial point in my life. I was just beginning to fall in love with Bombay when I happened to notice that I had never watched this movie before. I had a huge goofy smile across my face throughout the movie because I was that much more sure of my love (and possible obsession) with the chaotic yet beautiful city that is today called Mumbai.
The movie starts out with Sid (Ranbir Kapoor or as I fondly call him, Ranbir Bhaiyya) trying to study for his accounting exam. (I was taking Acct at that time too so I know how annoying it can get). Sid is basically a very laid-back guy and you might even see parts of his attitude in yourself. Skip to his college farewell party, and we meet Aisha (Konkona Sen aka one of my favorites) who is the new girl in the city, leaving behind her mundane life in Calcutta. They both hit it off well and decide to take a walk through the city. This is literally one of my favorite scenes in the entire movie because Sid talks about his genuine love for the Bombay monsoons and we even catch a glimpse of the sea at nighttime.
Plenty of other things happen after the two first meet such as; house hunting for Aisha, Sid and his issues with his family and the jobs that both Sid and Aisha land at the super awesome Mumbai Beat office. If only magazine offices like that actually existed ahhh! And with bosses like Kabir (played by none other than MR. RAHUL KHANNA), who wouldn't want to work there?
I'm so glad I watched this movie later than it was released because I managed to appreciate it that much more. And this is a movie with which everyone can relate to, be it with the characters or the situation. I personally identified with bits of both Sid and Aisha's personalities as well as Aisha's desire to move away and be independent in a gleaming new city. I'm not going to go in to more details of the story but overall, it's a great watch. Excellent casting (including Supriya Pathak, Anupam Kher and Sid's friends in the movie), easy-to-listen-to songs, breathtaking scenery of Bombay, and a cute & simple plot line. As Ayan Mukherji's (too many variations of his last name exist so I chose one) debut directorial, I have to say that he did a fabulous job. So if you're looking for all of the above and for something that will make you want to take the next flight out to India, definitely watch this movie!
VERDICT: WATCH IT NOW IF YOU HAVEN'T ALREADY.
Pictures courtesy: Dharma Productions