Movie Reviews
  • Cast: Varun Dhawan, Siddharth Malhotra, Alia Bhatt, Rishi Kapoor

    Director: Karan Johar

    Rating: ***1/2

    Karan Johar does what he is best at; create a glossy fairytalish world revolving around love, friendship and mush. Infact, KJo manages to steer clear of heightened melodrama and actually packs in a little message, floundering on the logic once in a while but never on the slick production qualities.

    The film is quite obviously inspired by Mansoor Khan's classic 'Jo Jeeta Wohi Sikandar', where the inter-school competition has been replaced by an intra-school Triwizard Tournament - like (Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire) contest that will decide on the 'Student of the Year'. Fortunately for us the plot is focused on the spirit of competition with a romantic interlude and keeps manipulation and vindication to the bare minimum. KJo insists on taking a short digression to show a Bollywood-style Big Fat Indian Wedding but we can make allowances for a little indulgence. What will all the

    Read More »from Yahoo! Movies Review: Student of the Year
  • Rani Mukerji and Prithviraj in 'Aiyyaa'Sachin Kundalkar's 'Aiyyaa' is a curious film to review, neither can you completely diss it as a bad one nor can you overlook its obvious flaws. There are moments in the film that will make you smile much after you have left the theatre and then there are others that just had no place in the final cut.

    Baradwaj Rangan has titled his review, "Aiyyaa"… Curiouser and curiouser:

    Throughout Aiyyaa, we are left turning between a lovably loud Hindi film and a more dreamlike French romance that might have featured Audrey Tautou — and the effect is whiplash. A musical sequence like Dreamum wakeupum — an expertly staged parody of the Padmalaya ethos — belongs in the first kind of a film, but clashes horribly with the sensibilities of the other film. And a song between two supporting characters — Maina (Anita Date, who's made to look like a cross between Olive Oyl and a Folies Bergère entertainer) and Meenakshi's brother Nana (Amey Wagh) — is staged like absurd theatre. It has no business in a

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  • A still from Aiyyaa
    Cast: Rani Mukerji, Prithviraj

    Director: Sachin Kundalkar

    Rating: **1/2

    To enjoy a film like 'Aiyyaa', logic and rational definitely have to be left behind. Sachin Kundalkar creates a funny, slightly eccentric, filmi protagonist but he expects her charm to carry a film that is saddled with a ridiculous plot and side characters who are intended to be amusing but border on the annoying.

    Meenakshi (Rani Mukerji) loves melodrama and is crazy about typical Bollywood films and music. Needless to say she also aspires to have a classic Bollywood romance rather than settle for an arranged marriage. Coming from a typical middle-class family, she has no choice but to go through the routine of meeting prospective grooms with their families, complete with a tray of poha and sreekhand. Despite several rejections, Meenkashi manages to find a perfectly eligible candidate. However, she is not too keen about the alliance because she finds herself insanely attracted to a very intense-looking Tamil

    Read More »from Yahoo! Movies Review: Aiyyaa
  • Celebs at 'English Vinglish' premiereGauri Shinde's directorial debut has been welcomed with thumping applause not because 'English Vinglish' says an extraordinary tale but because it makes a simple story so special.

    Anupama Chopra in her review says:

    English Vinglish is that rare thing — a Hindi film that creates a heroine out of a homemaker. Shashi, played by Sridevi, is a beautiful, accomplished woman who efficiently manages her home, husband, mother-in-law and two children. She also runs a small business making ladoos.

    Shinde's narrative resonates with the audience because they can identify with the emotions that are not extreme and overwhelming but merely sensitive. Baradwaj Rangan writes:

    There's no hate here; it's just that the love has dimmed — otherwise, we couldn't be hearing a song that went Piya bin dil lage na as Shashi gets ready to go abroad all alone (for her niece's wedding), with the rest of the family following her after a few weeks. Shashi doesn't like it when Satish hugs a female co-worker. She

    Read More »from Y! Meta Review: English Vinglish
  • Photos: Sridevi's all new avatarCast: Sridevi, Adil Hussain, Mehdi Nebbou, Priya Anand

    Director: Gauri Shinde

    Rating: ****

    When buzz got around that Sridevi was making her Bollywood comeback after 15 years, I was a little wary. 'Return of the (once) divas' after marriage, childbirth or a brief hiatus, marked with lot of publicity and fanfare, hasn't historically set the cash registers ringing (remember, Madhuri's 'Aaja Nachle', Rani's 'Dil Bole Hadippa' and more recently, Karisma's 'Dangerous Ishq'). However, Sridevi has chosen a director who manages to competently exploit her craft and she delivers with poise and aplomb.

    Like the promos have made it evident, 'English Vinglish' is about a housewife whose only handicap is that she does not know English. It's a small problem but it has huge ramifications for Sashi (Sridevi) who feels isolated and disconnected from her own family because of the language barrier. When we inadvertently make fun of people's accents and pronunciation, we operate on the premise that

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  • Akshay's high octane shootUmesh Shukla's 'OMG Oh My God' makes very pertinent points about commercialization of religion, religious symbolism and the farce that "devout" godmen manage to pull off. The intention was good but was that enough to make a good film?

    Baradwaj Rangan in his review says:

    Actors, sometimes, can annoy us with their omnipresence. At one time, Paresh Rawal was everywhere, and because our mainstream cinema does not offer a character actor too many notes to hit — it's either the well-intentioned friend of Baghban, or the shrill comedian trying to outshout everyone else in a Priyadarshan comedy — we began to tire of him. Cutting down his assignments has done the actor a world of good. He is in rip-roaring form as Kanji Bhai in Umesh Shukla's Oh My God. Kanji Bhai is a cheerfully unscrupulous wheeler-dealer, whose shop in Chor Bazaar specialises in religious memorabilia, ranging from Draupadi's sari to bottles of Gangajal whose contents come from the tap. (Kanji Bhai is an equal-opportunity

    Read More »from Y! Meta Review: OMG Oh My God
  • Akshay plays godCast: Paresh Rawal, Akshay Kumar, Mithun Chakraborty

    Direction: Umesh Shukla

    Rating: ***

    Umesh Shukla's film, 'OMG — Oh My God!' is a well-intentioned film but the execution could have been better. Shukla very competently succeeds in conveying the message that God has been reduced to mere symbolism in the modern world.

    Inspired by a Gujarati play, the plot is simple. Kanji Bhai (Paresh Rawal) is an atheist who owns an antique shop, he manages to cash in on the gullibility of blind believers to make a few extra bucks on the sale of their favourite deities. All is good till one day; the Gods decide to destroy only Kanji's antique shop after an earthquake. Even his insurance claim is rejected because of the "act of God" clause, which basically means since there was no theft, fire or fraud, there is no coverage for a victim of a quake or tsunami. When Kanji bhai's livelihood is at stake, he decides to sue God and claim compensation either from the various Godmen (who evidently run a

    Read More »from Yahoo! Movies Review: OMG Oh My God!
  • Spotted on the sets of HeroineIf you have seen one Madhur Bhandarkar film, then you have seen them all; there is not even a feeble attempt at novelty. It is surprising how such blatant stereotyping of the glamour world is not offensive to the celebrities who the director claims to be 'realistically' portraying. In Bhandarkar's films there is no one place for the grey: celeb town just consists of people who are psychotic, adulterous, do drugs and are homosexual.

    There is a passing mention that Bhandarkar's protagonist in 'Heroine' has bipolar disorder; if the central character of the film is psychotic then whether she is a heroine or a housewife, she will be insecure and hysterical. Fame, or the lack of it, has nothing to do with it. Mahi Arora (Kareena Kapoor) is an A-list heroine whose insecure relationship with her co-star drives her to desperation and she puts her stardom at stake. Every attempt at reviving her sinking career fails which further pushes her to the edge.

    It is hard to look for a silver lining in a

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  • Heroine review

    Hit me Bebo one more time!

    Cast: Kareena Kapoor, Arjun Rampal, Randeep Hooda, Divya Dutta, Govind Namdeo, Lilette Dubey

    Directed by Madhur Bhandarkar

    Welcome to the cesspool of enchantment or ‘glamour ka daldal’ as director Madhur Bhandarkar would like to articulate. Films about people behind the films tend to get preachy as filmmakers believe they know more about their own kind than anyone else. And in this case, the misplaced confidence ensures that the research department is sacked and most dialogues begin with ‘Humaari industry mein’… and end with ‘manipulate karo ya ho jao’, ‘zip aur zabaan sambhalke kholna chahiye’, ‘confidence se bolo toh jhooth ko bhi sach maana jaata hain’, ‘heroines ka waqt bohot kam hota hain’ and everything else in between. Basically, Bhandarkar likes to spell it out like the backbenchers aren’t paying attention.

    The naughty kahaani being narrated here is that of Bollywood’s most wanted actress Mahi Arora (Kareena Kapoor). She may be conquering new heights with every film but in her

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  • Barfi! inspired by Raj KapoorAnurag Basu's 'Barfi!' had left me overwhelmed, on hindsight the narrative might not have been completely flawless but sometimes, we need imperfect fairy-tales that reassure us that there's still a lot to be happy about.

    Anupama Chopra says in her review:

    In Barfi, writer-director Anurag Basu creates a gossamer, fairy-tale world. Sometime in the 1970s, somewhere in the misty hills of Darjeeling, a penniless but irresistibly charming deaf-mute boy named Barfi gets the prettiest girl in town to kiss him. But their sweetly awkward love affair comes undone, after which Barfi embarks on an adventure with an autistic girl. Somehow these two, on their own, manage to survive the city of Kolkata - Barfi gets a job and even a ramshackle house with a spectacular view of Howrah Bridge. To point out that this is unlikely seems churlish. Because Barfi is designed to be a bittersweet, tender fable.

    Whatever may be the pitfalls in the storytelling; critics remain unanimous that Ranbir Kapoor has

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