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First Cut

firstcut - Mon 20 Oct, 2014 3:53 PM IST - Actor Rajkummar Rao, who won his first National Award this year for his role in Ha…

First Cut

firstcut - Tue 11 Mar, 2014 3:33 PM IST - Ra…

Alia Bhatt
First Cut

firstcut - Tue 18 Feb, 2014 5:03 PM IST - He…

  • Cast: Ranveer Singh, Parineeti Chopra, Ali Zafar, Govinda

    Direction: Shaad Ali

    Rating: **

    Shaad Ali’s ‘Kill Dil’ is a fine example of a film marred by lousy storytelling. It’s an even bigger shame since the director did manage to get a decent cast in place, who seem completely convinced about this ridiculous plot.

    Even if you were to make discounts for a disjointed plot trajectory and absence of credible plot points, I somehow couldn’t make peace with a complete disregard for rationale.

    Yes, yes, there are a lot of Hindi films completely bereft of logic, the most recent one being ‘Happy New Year’ that I did like. ‘Dabangg’, ‘Dhoom 3’, ‘Kick’, among others, with their flimsy plotlines and over-the-top histrionics, somehow managed to engage me for the runtime of the film. And while I might have been clicking my tongue as I walked out of the theatre at the excesses, I nonetheless still enjoyed these films while I was watching them.

    Unfortunately, I can’t say the same for ‘Kill Dil’.


    Read More »from Yahoo Movies Review: Kill Dil
  • Cast: Anupam Kher, Piyush Mishra, Annu Kapoor, Lisa Haydon and Akshay Kumar

    Director: Abhishek Sharma

    Rating: *1/2

    Sitting through a film like ‘The Shaukeens’ is a depressing experience. We see a lot of lousy writing but a film as banal as this one deserves a special call-out.

    You would understand if amateurs were at work here, but the screenplay is by Tigmanshu Dhulia and actors of the calibre of Anupam Kher, Annu Kapoor and Piyush Mishra have agreed to do this film. You can’t expect a better replacement than them for the indomitable trio of Ashok Kumar, Utpal Dutt and AK Hangal who starred in the original ‘Shaukeen’ (1982). And yet, it boils down to one of the most blah outings at the theatres in recent times.

    You are ready to account for some amount of sleaze when three lecherous old men, Lali (Kher), KD (Kapoor) and Pinky (Mishra) head to Mauritius for some adult fun. They rent a house that belongs to dusky diva Ahana Bhasin (Lisa Haydon), who is also an aspiring designer. Having

    Read More »from Yahoo Movies Review: The Shaukeens
  • Cast: Shah Rukh Khan, Deepika Padukone, Abhishek Bachchan, Sonu Sood, Boman Irani, Vivaan Shah, Jackie Shroff

    Direction: Farah Khan
    Rating: ***1/2

    Will ‘Happy New Year’ make big money? Most definitely.  Are there instances that defy logic? Obviously. Does this multi-starrer entertain? Absolutely.

    Farah Khan plays to her strengths. She has an ensemble cast that for the most part don’t disappoint. She has a convincing revenge saga, action sequences designed to thrill, plenty of song and dance, a generous dose of drama, a downplayed romantic track - all this is strung together with a thread of emotions by a director who knows her target audience.
    The first half seemed to be moving very slowly; the setting-up took a lot of time and it wasn’t till Mohini’s (Deepika Padukone) entry that things seemed to really move along. I was pleasantly surprised that Deepika was used so well in this film. I was half expecting her to be a beautiful prop, where the men planned the heist and Shah Rukh hogged

    Read More »from Yahoo Movies Review: Happy New Year
  • The 16th Mumbai Film Festival organized by Mumbai Academy of the Moving Image (MAMI) began on the 14th October at PVR Andheri, Cinemax Versova and Chandan Cinema in Juhu. Actor Rajkummar Rao, who won his first National Award this year for his role in Hansal Mehta’s ‘Shahid’, is associated with the festival and he spoke to Yahoo Movies about why this festival is so close to his heart and how things are after he won the most prestigious award for an actor.

    What is the best thing about this festival?

    I think it is a really important festival for everyone, for each and everyone one of us. I have been attending the festival for the last three years now and I have been watching some great films. This is the only platform where you get to watch films from around the world, some really beautiful films, which you will otherwise not get to see on the big screen especially.

    Also, MAMI was the festival where ‘Shahid’ got its first award, that way also it’s very special for me. And since, it’s

    Read More »from Rajkummar Rao at MAMI 2014
  • Cast: Aditya Roy Kapur, Parineeti Chopra, Anupam Kher

    Direction: Habib Faisal

    Rating: ***

    ‘Daawat-e-Ishq’ is a delectable love story. And what I like about this flossy romance is that it manages to pack-in a neat little message for prospective grooms and dowry-seeking parents.

    Usually I love Parineeti Chopra, who plays the feisty Gulrez Qadir, in this film. Gullu is good but Tariq Haidar (Aditya Roy Kapur) is even better. Our Lucknowi cook Taru, with his surma-lined eyes, unpolishedEnglish and brash manners is a sure charmer.

    I find it refreshing that even though Gullu falls for Taru’s tasty treats and his smoky eyes, she stays focused on her plan. It doesn’t seem right that despite his genuine honesty, she has no change of heart but then, she didn’t get a fair deal in the first place. Her anger and revenge seem misplaced but then she doesn’t seem like a person, who has really thought through her plans. She is guided more by her impulses and less by the consequences.

    Her father is

    Read More »from Yahoo Movies Review: Daawat-e-Ishq
  • Cast: Deepika Padukone, Arjun Kapoor, Naseeruddin Shah, Dimple Kapadia, Pankaj Kapur

    Direction: Homi Adjania

    Rating: ***1/2

    Most of our films are sagas of love, revenge, struggle, survival and vindication; ‘Finding Fanny’ is a celebration of the mundane and of the irony inherent in a journey of five oddball characters.

    Homi Adjania’s ‘Finding Fanny’ is quirky. The characters, much like the story they are a part of, have no aspirations. They seem happy with their routine life in Pocolim, a sleepy village in Goa.

    Angie (Deepika), a young virgin widow, is lonely but is also completely okay living a sexless life. Even as she urges Ferdie (Naseeruddin Shah) to find the love of his life, Stephanie ‘Fanny’ Fernandes, you can’t help but wonder whether she really wants him to find love or whether her exertions and his quest provide a break from the monotony for her.

    Her mother-in-law Rosie (Dimple Kapadia) is a feisty woman who, all her life, has preserved the memory of a husband who abandoned

    Read More »from Yahoo Movies Review: Finding Fanny
  • Cast: Priyanka Chopra, Darshan Kumar, Sunil Thapa

    Direction: Omung Kumar

    Rating: ****

    First things first, loud applause for debutant director Omung Kumar – attempting a biopic on a boxing champion most of us had never heard of before her Summer Olympics bronze medal is worth plaudits.
    Then again, you can see why Kumar chose Kom as his subject – her life reads like a film script, complete with early struggles, hard-won victories, personal conflicts, hard training, amazing comeback. The nuts and bolts of the story exist in Kom’s life, but it still needs a competent director to pull it all together into a cohesive narrative, and to his credit Kumar accomplishes that.
    Priyanka Chopra plays Kom – and a large part of her performance relates to the science and art of boxing. Was the actress doing it right? Were her foot movements correct? Was her guard right? Did she carry off the one-two punches properly? I can’t vouch for any of that; I don’t watch boxing. What I can vouch for is that I found

    Read More »from Yahoo Movies Review: Mary Kom
  • Cast: Emraan Hashmi, Humaima Malick, Paresh Rawal, Kay Kay Menon

    Direction: Kunal Deshmukh

    Rating: ** ½

    ‘Raja Natwarlal’ had the potential to become a good con film, albeit with a completely borrowed premise from several Hollywood films, particularly from ‘Oceans Eleven’. Our director, Kunal Deshmukh, however, finds the need to play to the gallery, interspersing the narrative with unnecessary elements that completely slacken the pace of the story.

    The basic requirement of a good con story is a crisp taut script that keeps the viewer engaged and hooked. An insipid romantic track and completely superfluous songs dilute Deshmukh’s screenplay.

    Most of the time, like planning a good holiday, plotting a heist is more fun than the actual deed. But, the loopholes are so evident and our cocky protagonist (Emraan Hashmi) is so indiscreet that it is impossible to ever really invest into their big idea.

    ‘Raja Natwarlal’ has some crackling performances by the likes of Paresh Rawal, Kay Kay Menon

    Read More »from Yahoo Movies Review: Raja Natwarlal
  • Cast: Rani Mukerji, Tahir Raj Bhasin, Jisshu Sengupta

    Direction: Pradeep Sarkar

    Rating: ***

    ‘Mardaani’ had a lot of potential – it could have been a gripping police drama. Alas, the payoff doesn’t quite deliver on its promise. While the plot trajectory is immensely engaging, here again is a climax not only hugely disappointing, but also extremely problematic.

    Just as in ‘Singham Returns’, there is a tough, honest cop with an insight into the criminal mind. Inspector Shivani Roy (Rani Mukherjee) is calm and precise in approach and meticulous in execution, as is evident from her water-tight plan to bust a heinous crime racket. Drugs and sex trafficking being her primary concern.

    What deeply disturbs, however, is the protagonist’s utter lack of faith in the Indian judicial system. A film that glorifies and even espouses vigilante justice by a senior police officer can only be interpreted with dark tones in India, a country of over a billion of which a fair chunk suffers crime, inequality

    Read More »from Yahoo Movies Review: Mardaani
  • Cast: Ajay Devgn, Kareena Kapoor Khan, Amole Gupte, Mahesh Manjrekar, Anupam Kher

    Direction: Rohit Shetty

    Rating: ***1/2

    Rohit Shetty is no doubt getting better at his game. There are still a lot of vehicles turning turtle, gun-blazing machismo, smashing of glasses and damdaar dialoguebaazi in ‘Singham Returns’ but there is also a method in this madness.

    Even though Shetty tries to pack in a neat little message for Independence Day, masala remains his forte and he stays true to his style. He shows some restrain, going slow on the sermonizing and melodrama for the most part. Even the romantic track is a subtle insertion, which doesn’t slow the pace of the story.

    ‘Singham Returns’ meanders close on the edge of over-the-top drama but someone was keeping a tab on some kind of script and narrative and the fact that Shetty’s overenthusiasm had been reigned in more than once was quite obvious. In fact, I was quite impressed by the way we were progressing on collecting evidence and maintaining

    Read More »from Yahoo Movies Review: Singham Returns


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