Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Jillendru Oru Kadhal (2006) - Tamil Movie Review

Ranking: 3.5/5

Cast: Surya, Jyothika, Bhoomika Chawla
Director: Krishna
Music: AR Rehman

My husband and some friends went to watch Kabhi Alvida Na Kehna in the theater's this week but when I saw that they were also screening Jillendru... I changed my mind and went alone to watch this film. Since my husband does not understand or appreciate Tamil movies much I usually land up watching most of them alone... Almost 60 movies in close to 9 months...Not bad right? So I will give you the review of JOK and then continue to talk briefly of the 40 mins of KANK I saw...

Gautham (Surya) and Kundavi (J0) go through the many year old tradition of arranged marriage and move to Bombay. Initially both of them do not seem happy but when the frame changes and they are six years into their wedding they are a small happy family with a little daughter Aishwarya. As busy as they are being working parents, they also spend a good lot of time together being a family. In short they are a model happy nuclear family living in a big city.

Gautham gets a chance to go to USA for a presentation. Everyone is happy and all of Kundavi's family comes from the village to send him off. While doing some work around the house for Aishwarya Kundavi chances upon Gautham's old diary and she sits down to read a past that she had never known in the last six years.

The diary is written by Gautham who tells about a marriage to a girl named Aishwarya (Bhoomika) whom he had loved a lot but right after their marriage Aishwarya's father separates them. It was also written in the diary how Gautham would have been happy had he at least spent a day with Aishwarya...

Kundavi is very unhappy but does not show it out to Gautham explicitly. She spends time to find out the whereabouts of Aishwarya and then one day when Gautham opens the door it is Aishwarya standing...He is shocked and confused and watches silently as Kundavi leaves the house with their daughter telling him that he can have his one day with his first wife...

What happens next is pretty predictable, if anything happened otherwise then the public will either be confused or not accept it...This is a simple story. What I did not like is the little girl of Gautham and Kundavi who talks beyond her age...At most she would be five and five year old kids should not talk so much. The movie is directed like a Malayalam movie. Very simple and very few add on matters...And what is sad is that the songs are not very catchy and so irritated me and kept me looking for the "forward" button in the theater...

So when I walked out of the theater I felt that it was a decent movie that one can certainly watch with kids and entire family...Simple story and decent direction and screenplay compared to movies like Aran...Also sorry Gautham Menon, your assistant seemed to have learnt a thing or two from you unlike you who seems to have lost it! I could not believe the music is ARR's...maybe I should listen to them a few more times before I like them...

Now that my movie was over I had to wait for my husband's to get over...So I joined him and his friends in the theater screening KANK...another 40 mins was remaining...the final scenes where all 's well that ends well part was coming on...and by god I swear that it was the most boring ending. I started reflecting on JOK and I realized that that movie was way better than KANK and the director knew how to handle the climax without too much drama. I wish Hindi movie directors soon realize that making a movie with all super stars does not essentially mean that the movie has any masala! Also the 40 minutes I saw was enough to give me an idea of what the whole story might have been like...it felt like a MEGA SERIAL! Please watch KANK only if you have absolutely nothing to do or you have 3.25 hours to while away...Else just watch Jillendru Oru Kadhal...it is Cool ma!

Nuvve Nuvve (2003) - Telugu Movie Review

Ranking: 2/5

Cast: Tarun, Shriya Saran, Prakash Rai
Director: Trivikram Srinivas
Music: Koti

It is most common story one would have ever seen...Middle class hero, a very rich heroine, a doting father who opposes their love. Nothing new and the movie is not even refreshing. The music is a rehash of many popular English songs and Tarun is just not fresh any more. Shriya is beautiful and can surely act but she needs to get to be more lively and less somber. If you are looking for a mindless run-of-the mill story then this is one of them...

Hero Tarun is a loafer who attends college and takes advantage of his parents and spends their money. While Prakash Rai a self made millionaire dotes on his daughter and makes sure all her wishes comes true even at the cost of belittling his own son. Shriya goes to the same college of Tarun and eventually they both fall in love.

On hearing about this Prakash Rai tries to curb their love in many ways for which Tarun puts up a fight valiantly until Prakash Rai obviously gives up in the end...

Like I said...it is a very simple, rehashed, formula-based, Telugu movie...do not expect anything new or any sudden twists either...

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Aran (2006) - Tamil Movie Review

Ranking: 1.5/5

Cast: Mohan Lal, Jeeva
Director: Major Ravi
Music:


I liked Jeeva in Ram. I really felt that he had matured as an actor...But choosing to do a movie like Aran just did not work in his favor. I cannot imagine Mohan Lal agreeing to do a film that is so poorly written, directed, dubbed, acted, scripted, etc...It is probably one of the worst movies I have seen. The director was surely trying to bank on the fact that he was in the Kargil War and on the over exposed Indo-Pak hatred. Sorry nothing worked in your favor Major Ravi.

The story is about Major Mahadevan (Mohan Lal) and Hawaldar Ravi (Jeeva) fighting against terrorist activities in Kashmir. We know who the villain is, we know that Ravi is dead, and we also know that India is going to come out shining at the very beginning of the movie. The story is simple, a terrorist cell in Pakistan that has infiltrated into India is going to bomb the Hazratbal mosque. The major gets a tip off and he along with his strong commando's go and stop the operation.

I am not going to elaborate any more...But here is a list of things I did not like in the movie:
1) There is no continuity between scenes.
2) Poorly written dialogues. Cliched and corny.
3) Badly written English dialogues and bad pronunciations.
4) The person who dubbed for the villain calling "jihad" as "jigad" is very annoying.
5) The gang rape scene which is shown very crudely could have been avoided. People get the picture if you just show a sketchy idea of rape...
6) Fight scenes are not even entertaining.
7) Romance between Jeeva and Gopika is boring.
8) Director should have taken some lessons before trying his hand out!

On the whole...I just would not waste time on this movie because even the music is not memorable!

Vettaiyadu Vilayadu (2006) - Tamil Movie Review

Ranking: 2.5/5

Cast: Kamal Hassan, Jyothika, Kamilini Mukherjee, Daniel Balaji, Prakash Raj, etc.
Director: Gautham Menon
Music: Harris Jeyaraj

Major expectations, a Gautham Menon movie featuring Kamal Hassan...That is an awesome combination. But this movie did not keep up to it...I was being reminded of Khaka Khaka (KK) at every nook and corner of this movie. There were literally no twists, climax so predictable, and so was the story. Surya should be proud, everything Kamal tried to do reminded me of Surya in KK. I somehow feel that he fitted the bill of a Cop better than Kamal did in VV.

Kamal rushes to the side of Prakash Raj whose daughter was kidnapped and her finger was severed and tied on a rope on his doorstep. Kamal who used to report to Prakash Raj helps uncover the body of his daughter and promises that he will find the culprit/culprits. Prakash Raj and his wife who leave India to US to stay with a relative to forget their loss are also murdered. Kamal is asked to go and do the final rites for Prakash and his wife and also help the American police in the investigation. So Kamal boards his flight to the US of A.

On his way to NY Kamal thinks about his wife Kamalinee Mukherjee who was no more...Very predictable part and felt like watching KK ending. Kamalinee appears exactly for two minutes in the whole movie...Now that Kamal is in NY and has checked into Renaissance he meets his next door neighbor, Jo, also a Tamilian (of course) trying to commit suicide over a failed marriage. Now you know where this story is going...

Kamal meets up with NYPD and officer Anderson drives him around until Kamal solves the crime and narrows it down to two medical college students in NY from Tamilnadu. They were the two students who would have been beaten by Prakash Raj for eveteasing his daughter. They are psychopath killers on loose. Kamal is beaten up when these kids escape from right under his nose and also from Indian Police when they re-enter India.

Kamal comes back to Chennai, and so does Jo. They are now in love and the villains get to know about this...How else can this movie proceed? If you have already seen KK...Then this mystery must be a piece of cake to solve....

Why I did not like this movie:
1) Kamal overacting.
2) Feels like watching KK all over again with a semi-new cast.
3) I don't know they had to include Kamalinee Mukherjee in the script at all. Was it to show that Kamal was an avengeful cop? Or was it to show that he was bitter against gundas because of what had happened to his wife? Why? Waste of a song and take a ten minute detour in the movie.
4) Why are villains always stupid to confess to a cop? And how come they are always sure the cop will die and not check on him if he is dead or not?
5) How come the American cop is running around to Kamal's orders? Does he not have enough stuff to worry about considering the fact that he works with NYPD?
6) Kamal and his smart ass dialogues, "Gut feeling = Raghavan instinct."
7) Why and why and for the millionth time why can't a director make a movie that has minimal shades of his past successful movie?
8) Why does Kamal talk in a guttural voice? Very annoying.
9) Why does Kamal always include at least one scene in his movie where he speaks Madras Baashai? We all know he can do it...there is no need to do repeat it.
10) The first stunt/fight scene Kamal has with some no-name villain was a waste of time...my gut feeling is that Kamal forced the director to include it to present a macho image.

In simple words I think KK was a far more better fare than VV and Gautham has to really do something better than that and not similar to that to make me like his movies in the future...Do not watch this movie with children as it has graphic images...

About music...Harris Jeyaraj is brilliant...But why does VV songs give you the feel of "engayo ketta maadhiri irukku?" and also I like B. Jayashree's voice...But singing the same type of songs is just getting a little too tiring for me...

See the movie as most people who have reviewed it elsewhere on the net seem to have liked it but if you are anything like me then I am sure you would not enjoy it too...I hate too much on screen violence and graphic images! They don't give me a very good after taste of the film.

Kalyug (2005) - Hindi Movie Review

Ranking: 3.5/5

Cast: Kunal Khemu, Amrita Singh, Emraan Hashmi, Deepal Shah, Smilie, Ashutosh Rana
Director: Mohit Suri
Music: Annu Mallik

I just got to see this movie. Maybe because there are so many crappy movies being released I actually liked this movie. Would not recommend it for children and certainly not a family watch but a good movie nevertheless with great music too...

It is about Kunal (Kunal Khemu) a refugee in his own country moves from Kashmir to Mumbai as a kid with his father, a social worker. He sees struggle and violence all his life and one day hears the news that his father has passed away. An orphan now, he leads a quiet life until Smilie comes into his life. A girl from Kashmir whom his father had been supporting comes to Mumbai in search of a job. Kunal and Smilie fall in love with each other and soon get married.

One of their friends gifts them a few nights stay in a hotel for their honey moon. The young and unsuspecting couple take up the gift and drive down to this hotel where they are met with Ashutosh Rana (with an evil wicked smile) offers the couple a special honey moon suite. Still not sure what is happening the couple spend their time there and return home. Things are back to normal until one night when the cops come in and arrest both the husband and wife and keep them under lock up over night.

The next morning they come to hear that their lovemaking was caught on tape and now everywhere on the internet in a popular desi porn site. Both of them are beaten to confess the crime. Smilie confused if her husband framed her commits suicide. Kunal comes out on bail and then starts tracking the ring behind the death of his wife and the one behind putting them all over the internet.

He gets on to a fast lead on the whereabouts of Ashutosh Rana but realizes that he needs to travel to Europe to get to the heart of the issue. He does so and meets Emraan Hashmi, a local, who is working in a sex toy store and employs his services to help him out in finding people. This sort of a thing is not easy and of course Kunal goes through a lot of Hardship and does he close the porn shop? This forms the rest of the story.

Kunal Khemu, is a good actor, shows anger and his good physique in most of the movie. Smilie, plays dumb, Ashutosh Rana is scary and he really scares the crap out of me everytime I see him, even if he is doing a decent role. The music is really good, I love the Atif Aslam Sound track and the "Jiya dhadak dhadak..." number too...

Good movie, not for kids and will most certainly give you a sad feeling after the movie ends...

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Lage Raho Munnabhai (2006) - Hindi Movies

Ranking: 4.8/5

Cast: Sanjay Dutt, Arshad Warsi, Bomman Irani, Vidya Balan
Director: Rajkumar Hirani
Music: Shantanu Moitra


Munnabhai has a new adventure this time around. A new girl to woo and a new don to tackle. Although the cast is pretty much the same but for Vidya Balan replacing Gracie Singh from Part I, the story has no relationship to Munnabhai MBBS! It is much more hilarious, original, and extremely entertaining with catchy music!

Jhanvi (Vidya Balan) hosts a radio show in Bombay and Prof. Murali Prasad Sharma aka Munnabhai is her biggest fan who never misses a single episode. He has not seen her yet but has fallen in love with her. Munna prepares very hard with the help of Circuit (Arshad Warsi) to win a quiz on Gandhi hosted by the radio station so he can meet her in flesh and blood. Munna of course wins it and now he is sitting in front of his dream girl who not only has a pretty voice but is also very beautiful. Tongue tied Munna tells her that he is a professor and specializes in Gandhian study! Jhanvi impressed with Munnabhai invites him home so that he can chat with her extended family about his extensive knowledge on Gandhian principles and Munna promptly agrees.

Not to sound ignorant Munna goes to the Gandhi library and starts reading about Bapu with no food or water and eventually Bapu appears in front of him. This just opens up the story for some fine hilarious moments between Munna/Circuit/and Bapu. Also the BGM for Bapu is real cool, "Bandhe me tha dhum, bandey mataram..." So now Munna has pataofied his girl with a lie and every time he tries to tell her the truth something comes up.

On the other hand Lucky Singh (Bomman), a developer wants to get his daughter married to the son of another rich developer in town who believes in astrology for everything he does. This developer's astrologer tells him that he needs to own a certain piece of land in Mumbai for prosperity. But he is unable to get his hands on it and Bomman promises to get him the same in dowry. He hires Munna and Circuit to get the tenants vacated from the house. But upon realizing that the house belongs to Jhanvi, Lucky manipulates Munna and sends him with Jhanvi and her extended adopted family for a vacation to Goa full fare paid.

Only after returning does Munna realize that Lucky had used him and had Circuit empty the house while Munna was having fun in Goa. Munna strikes back...But this time with Gandhian principles of ahimsa. On realizing who Munna really is Jhanvi leaves him and Munna is grief stricken but does not slack on his determination to get Jhanvi her house back...Does Munna get the house back? Does he win Jhanvi's heart back? Are there more funny moments and surprises waiting around the corner?

Can't tell you...gotta watch the movie for that eh? It is a family movie, fun, and fultu time pass! Circuit has a lot more coverage in this movie and to be honest and fair Munnabhai cannot exist without Circuit...They are fun together! I wonder why Circuit is still single and has never had any love interest yet! These guys make even sentimental scenes funny! Kudos to the director and the entire team for making a wholesome entertainer!