Blog Posts by Vishwas Kulkarni

  • Dub B Good To Me

    Munish D visits film festivals across the world, picks up the choicest B-grade flicks, dubs them furiously into Hindi, Telegu, what have you. He's practically built a mini-empire with this business model

    Munish Dutt

    Munish Dutt is having a busy day. Aside from recently having released Love, Sex and Multiplex in theatres across India, he’s also having to step in to help a friend with serious Censor Board woes. “I’ve been in the industry for long enough, but this friend is just starting out. His screening is at Yari Road this evening and he’s nervous. I know a couple of Censor Board chaps. So I’m going to the screening too to give him moral support,” says the entrepreneur who’s become a name to reckon with thanks to his unique trade: buying sundar-sasta-tikaoo B-grade flicks from international markets and giving them a local flavour via dubbing.

    “Circa 1987 steamy foreign releases meant near-X-rated flicks with obnoxious titles, stuff that kept the good crowd away. I've given the single-theatre trade

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  • This man won the top honours at Cannes

    Michael Haneke
    For a man who debuted with his first feature film at 47, Austrian Michael Haneke has done rather well for himself. His feature Amour has won him his second Cannes in three years, putting him in an elite club of only seven directors to have pulled off such a feat. His earlier Cannes Palme D’Or was for The White Ribbon, a black-and-white dazzler based on a feudal village in Germany on the eve of World War I. So deeply unpleasant are the goings-on in this village that it comes as no surprise that Nazism had to be borne out of such murky inner workings in a society. Amour, they say, is a more touching tale of an ageing couple coming to terms with their imminent death – this might be an aberration for a man whose filmography evokes more dread than warmth. And yet, there is something so razor-sharp about Haneke’s observations of society and of the humans in it that you can’t take your eyes off the screen. Yahoo! India Movies recommends this crash course for Michael Haneke beginners:

    Weekend

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  • Movie Review: The Cabin in the Woods

    The Cabin in the Woods
    The genre of horror goes through a cycle every half a decade or so. Thus, the mid-70s saw horror flicks becoming an acceptable fare of mainstream cinema (The Omen, Carrie, Halloween), while the early ‘80s saw the genre getting cheaper, saucier and even more profitable with the mushrooming of the slasher genre (Friday the 13th, Nightmare on Elm Street). The genre faded by the end of the ‘80s, relegated to direct-to-video fare, and by the mid-‘90s, horror was a genre that had begun to spoof itself (Scream, Scary Movie). Flash-forward to the Iraq war and the response to horror changed. Torture-porn (which found its birth in the early 1970s with the blockbusters Texas Chainsaw Massacre, The Hills Have Eyes, The Last House on The Left) was fashionable again – what with Abu Ghraib atrocities being splashed all over tabloids. Thus, The Hills Have Eyes, The Last House on the Left and I Spit on Your Grave were remade in the late naughties. Even arthouse guru Michael Haneke was compelled to

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  • The Many Shades of Liam Neeson

    Pic Courtesy: IMDB
    For all our plaints that Bollywood is a studio-driven industry powered by stars from the '30s, here is a film that proves exactly that, but with an efficiency that wins you over. So The Grey is an arctic thriller about Liam Neeson, an oil-rigger who finds his ecological comeuppance when his plane crashes into the snowy nothing. This is the Siberian nightmare we've grown up on, but thankfully the lead actor pulls us through the clichés and The Grey actually turns into a rather enthralling watch, especially when another species of 'best supporting actors' skitter in: the wolves.

    Yet, for all of those who think that Bollywood films are too  star-driven and we depend too much on them, The Grey might offer some solace. But there is no escaping the rather decent production design, the attempt to create the atmosphere, the icy menace that makes for a rather decent horror/thriller film without having to worry, "Oh, God! Sonakshi is going to do an item number next!"

    The film also conjoins the Read More »from The Many Shades of Liam Neeson
  • Amar Chitra Katha for the IPad Gen

    Arjun: The Warrior Prince


    Rating: 4/5
    Arjun: The Warrior Prince is a kaleidoscopic dazzler of what the possibilities are if thought and aesthetics are applied to our bottomless reserve of mythological wealth


    When you think of the Mahabharata or Ramayana adapted to the screen, for some reason a predominant reference point is that of the TV serials that became symbolic of life in socialist India – dhobis, domestic servants, neighbours without television all scrambling for space in the living room so that they could watch televised versions of what BR Chopra and Ramanand Sagar had been inspired to make using India’s epic tomes for inspiration. So much so that Mark Tully’s India book from the time even had a chapter dedicated to the phenomenon. And a phenomenon it was. A captive audience of close to half a billion were obsessed with Ramayana and Mahabharata in the late ‘80s. These were Doordarshan’s answer to Cecil Demille.

    Flash-forward to 2012: it has taken close to $2.5 million dollars and ace animator Arnab

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Pagination

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