Udta Punjab: A Soaring Reality Check

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At a point in the film when Alia Bhatt’s character is venting out her agony, she bends down and kisses Shahid Kapoor, explaining why she never got that! At another point when Shahid aka Tommy Singh is forced to sing in a hospital while two cops continue to bang at the door, it is his hesitance in humming  “Ikk Kudi” which wins us over. The last time he sang was at a recording studio which had lyrics like “coke” and “cock”. That’s one bleeding Alia and a reforming Tommy!

You know why I call Udta Punjab a rare film? Not because it survived a long-standing battle against the Censor Board or managed to hold itself up strongly from losing its soul against the 94 prescribed cuts. We don’t get a film like this that easily, which give you a rush of blood right in your minds forcing you to get panicked to fight the cause which the film depicts. If a movie has succeeded in doing that, isn’t it a bigger battle won? Hell, YES!

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Kapoor & Sons: The Perfect Mad-House

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Every happy looking family, one time or the other, faces the unravelling of secrets which so far have remained well preserved deep inside those four walls. The Kapoors are just like any other set of three generations fighting against its own created misunderstandings. In the guise of a Karan Johar packaging, this film gives us much more than his patent mushy unbelievable dramas. It is rather a long-awaited middle ground that connects the real-life inspired cinema and the dreamy world of KJO.

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Neerja: Saluting The Braveheart

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Confession: I had watched the film’s trailer four times before its release, and each time ended up crying. I was once reading about Neerja Bhanot’s life and got teary eyed again. The sheer fact that she took all the bullets on herself to save three kids, moved me to bits. And all this while she was just two days away from turning 23! Yes, Neerja Bhanot’s life hasn’t been unknown to us. But we desperately needed her story on the celluloid to live that moment, that ill-fated hour and what all went in her mind while sacrificing herself during the line of duty.

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Angry Indian Goddesses: Discovering The Hidden Fury

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For a nation that (supposedly) swears by women empowerment, accepting a film which talks serious business around it, and then getting the nod of our sanskari Censor Board isn’t a cake’s walk for any filmmaker. But all credit to director Pan Nalin, for not only making such a bold statement, but also getting through the entire hypocrite system. The film by its name justifies how angry every Indian goddess might be seeing the plight women have faced all through their struggle seeking equality.  While the prelude and introduction of all seven women sets the pace of the film rolling from the very start, it only reached a crescendo hinting at what lies ahead for the viewers in its brilliantly created opening credits montage.

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Tamasha: A Drama About Reality

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The world’s a stage…..
And all the men and women merely players…..Right!
So this Shakespeare’s poem has passed through our ears since childhood. But ever given it a real thought? Well, none of us did, until Imtiaz Ali made life out of these lines.
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Manjhi: Cutting Across Mountains

Manjhi-New-PosterIn the times when Bollywood is out endorsing biopics on sportspersons, politicians and actors, here comes a film which gave recognition to a man whose names could’ve fast faded into the dust of his mountain, if this story wasn’t told onscreen.

I am happy to see Bollywood audiences opening up to such real life stories. And with a film like Manjhi – The Mountain Man, I can only applaud to have given a new lease of life to the late Dashrath Manjhi, popularly known as the ‘Mountain Man’. Director Ketan Mehta has penned down a true story which is stranger than fiction, with oodles of drama. Continue reading

Bangistan: Fake Explosion

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While the Taliban continues to unleash violence in real life, here is one film that makes mockery of its antics in reel!

The political satire, as it claims to be, is a parody of communal tensions in the social media age of today. However, it turns out to be mildly wacky on the futility of religious bigotry.

And when a former film critic decides to make his directorial debut, we expect him to , weave an intriguing plot. But that’s where Karan Anshuman fails! Continue reading