Movie Reviews
  • Cast: Reetu Jain, Naseeruddin Shah, Kay Kay Menon, Atul Kulkarni, Ravi Kissen, Shweta Bhardwaj, Rajesh Sharma, Zakir Hussain, Manoj Pahwa

    Directed by Hriday Shetty

    Rating: **

    Squeezing in a series of events that take place over a night can make for a deliciously pacey watch. But Bollywood’s interpretation of this format hasn’t always managed the meat of the bat. While ‘Ek Chalis Ki Last Local’ had a crisp screenplay, ‘My Friend Pinto’ was an embarrassing take on Chaplin and ‘Chameli’ seemed pretentiously art house. Neither had the gritty zing of an ‘After Hours’ or the shivering tension of a ‘Rope’ and yet, it is refreshing that this one manages very well to keep you awake and interested if not anxious about the what would follow. Somewhere between overwhelming and underwhelming is a slot that is called unobjectionable and that is just where this one-night comic-thriller fits into.

    Bollywood has explored themes like cops breaking bad, baddies trying to start afresh and every other one in

    Read More »from Chaalis Chauraasi review
  • Ghost review

    How many tomatoes does it take to fix a light bulb?
    Cast: Shiney Ahuja, Sayali Bhagat, Julia Bliss

    Directed by Puja Jatinder Bedi

    Rating: Full moon, no stars

    ‘The past never dies, it kills’ is a promise made on the poster of this film and that for one, is well-fulfilled. Step out of the screen and you will find your brain cells ready to be zipped up like a carcass in a body bag. ‘Ghost’ follows the most reliable format for Indian horror films: Bhoot is evil; God isn’t and if you pray hard enough or atleast pretend to believe in good over evil, God will take the time out to smash evil’s nose. And as a bonus, we not only have chalk-faced spirits cackling around noisily, we also have the almighty himself sashaying in his biblical robe through dark corridors, managing very well in not tripping over.

    The film begins with a mythological TV show voiceover, announcing the beginning of time or end of good times or something very prophetic that you won’t be bothered to care about. What you would care about is the following unaesthetic potty sex

    Read More »from Ghost review
  • PlayersAbbas Mustan, our desi experts on action thrillers are back with their latest offering 'Players'. Do the 'Players' manage to thrill or is it just another show of style over substance?

    Kaveree Bamzai calls the film "a genuine copy of a Hollywood film":

    Bollywood has realized it can camouflage its lack of stories with lots of thrills, chases, heists making the location exotic and the villains international even if it has to finally buy the remake rights legally. As one character's motto in the movie goes - videshi gadiyan, desi bomb - of the inanimate and animate kind. Even better if they wear slinky gowns and shake their booty. It allows you to laugh and lust in equal measure.

    Taran Adarsh in his review points out the flaws in the screenplay:

    While a one-page synopsis of the film would evoke euphoric and ecstatic reactions, it's the screenplay, with a running time of almost 2.45 hours [20 reels], that lacks the power to keep you enthralled and enchanted. In short, PLAYERS has style and

    Read More »from Y! Meta Review: Players
  • Players review

    A still from 'Players'

    Cast: Bobby Deol, Neil Nitin Mukesh, Abhishek Bachchan, Bipasha Basu, Sonam Kapoor, Omi Vaidya, Sikander Kher, Vinod Khanna, Johnny Lever

    Directed by Abbas-Mustan

    Rating: Game Over

    Desi versions of Hollywood thrillers are like ‘first copy’ bootlegs from Thailand. They initially look approximately the same but later the threads begin to wriggle out. So when director duo, Abbas-Mustan took on ‘The Italian Job’, Benny Hill became Neil Nitin Mukesh, everyone double-crossed and obvious lines were exchanged with a grim face. Now, tough guys don’t snigger until they’ve outwitted someone or unless they’re delirious like Mogambo! But our bad boys are, firstly, not all boys and their badness is mostly restricted to the leather jackets rented from MJ’s ‘Bad’ music video. So looking grim is a ritual observed throughout the audience.

    Most would vaguely know about the original gold heist comic caper so let’s go straight to the singular flourishes added here. Veteran robber, Victor Dada (Vinod Khanna)

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  • DonThe first time Farhan Akhtar decided to remake the cult classic 'Don', the film was weighed down by comparisons to the Bachchan starrer. This time around it does not have the baggage of the past. 'Don 2' is definitely high on the style quotient but does it deliver as a complete entertainer?

    Well Nikhat Kazmi certainly seems to think so. She writes in her review:

    Don 2 is a classic action/crime thriller that doesn't let go, even for a moment. More importantly, the plot has been finely crafted, with every twist and turn falling into place like a complicated albeit neat little jigsaw. With a canvas that goes on a cross-country ride -- Thailand, Malaysia, Zurich, Berlin -- the film challenges you to hop aboard its high speed scuttle and attentively follow the exploits of its glamorous gangster. One who oscillates between two avatars -- Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise in Mission Impossible) and James Bond -- without losing out on his desi charisma.

    Raja Sen in his review says, "Don 2, Akhtar's

    Read More »from Y! Meta Review: Don 2
  • Don 2 review

    A still from 'Don 2'
    Cast: Shah Rukh Khan, Priyanka Chopra, Boman Irani, Lara Dutta, Om Puri, Kunal Kapoor

    Directed by Farhan Akhtar

    Rating: **

    The Don franchise is back in all its stammering, self-praising and lopsided grinning glory. Living up to its prequel, this one is high on slick quotient and has many meticulously choreographed stunts. The only grouse: Don has become cockier than ever and loves rambling lines that narrate his characteristic traits in third person- 'Don ke dushmano ko…' Yawn.

    We begin with a voiceover by the man himself who is now the A-PAC head of drug retailing and wholesaling and wants to spread his distribution channels across Europe. In doing so, he has to help his old enemy, Vardhaan (Boman Irani) escape from a prison in Kuala Lumpur. So Don stages his own arrest by surrendering at the KL Interpol office to the delightfully dumb investigators Roma (Priyanka Chopra) and her boss Malik (Om Puri). Soon, Don and Vardhaan have forgotten the incidents that occurred in the prequel and

    Read More »from Don 2 review
  • Cast: Vinay Pathak, Neha Dhupia, Rajat Kapoor, Naseeruddin Shah, Sanjay Mishra, Saurabh Shukla

    Directed by Saurabh Shukla

    Rating: * 1/2

    Movies featuring odd couples have always connected with audiences. Rich girl and poor boy, society mistress and party crasher, Bruce Willis and Samuel L. Jackson; it just works. Time and again, Bollywood has served us mismatched pairs whose conflicting personalities and personal eccentricities are exploited for humour. So here, the concept is presented in a new bottle. PCDS shows us how some differences can’t be creased out over time and yet, Pappu, who can do much less than promised in the title, can somehow fall in love with someone very unlike him.

    For those unaware, Pappu is a pseudonym given to those considered utter nincompoops with a hint of condescension over the person’s inabilities. For people reading this review who have this name, I would sincerely apologize for breaking it down for the rest but then again, don’t kill the messenger. 


    Read More »from Pappu Can’t Dance Saala review
  • Ranveer and Anushka The biggest question for Maneesh Sharma's 'Ladies vs Ricky Bahl' was would it recreate the magic of 'Band Baja Baraat'? While the film is definitely a fun onetime watch, it lacks the spark of the team's last outing.

    What's missing in this film? Nikhat Kazmi writes in her review:

    Firstly, there is no humour, no earthy flavour (remember the vows on the bread pakora), no tingling chemistry between the lead pair -- everything which made the first film such a winner. More importantly, Anushka has a role only post-interval and the first half is devoted to his exploits with the other three girls.

    The pace of the narrative is important in a con story and Raja Sen in his review points out the biggest flaw of the film:

    There is a plot in Maneesh Sharma's latest, but essentially imagine a long and rather unfunny Khosla Ka Ghosla and you'll get the gist. Ricky Bahl swindles a bunch of interesting but gullible women, and they -- in Not A Penny More, Not A Penny Less fashion -- scheme to get their

    Read More »from Y! Meta Review: Ladies vs Ricky Bahl
  • Cast: Anushka Sharma, Ranveer Singh, Parineeti Chopra, Dipannita Sharma, Aditi Sharma, Shireesh Sharma

    Directed by Maneesh Sharma

    Rating: * 1/2

    Films about conmen rarely con the audience since we love watching people getting fleeced. There's just something special about someone who can massage egos and charm one and all to part with their wallets (or purses in this case). Also, who doesn't want to learn how to tweak human emotions for capital gains? Or how to pursue fancy vocations with much diligence and little credentials. Many personalities for the price of one single multiplex ticket: a Christmas bargain indeed!

    The title clearly spells out the unimaginative plot. Our slicker-than-the-rest hero, Ricky Bahl (Ranveer Singh) dons many avatars to enchant and deceive women from diverse worlds. And as difficult as it is to digest, these cheated women from different cities not only find each other but also join forces to avenge their collective wounds. But how do they find him? How do

    Read More »from Ladies vs Ricky Bahl review
  • The Dirty Picture

    Cast: Vidya Balan, Naseeruddin Shah, Emraan Hashmi, Tusshar

    Directed by Milan Luthria

    Rating: ***

    Many will argue that this film is filthy, lewd, sleazy and every other word that conveys the same. But since it's based on a character who embodies all these adjectives, it only ends up being a deliciously dirty tribute.

    Based on the south Indian dancing diva and actress, Silk Smita's lustful life, 'The Dirty Picture' paints a concupiscent portrait, complete with bouncing love handles, blouses that resemble the barricade at the Metallica concert in Delhi (visible but unable to contain) and dialogues that are as clever as they are cocky. But a film about an A-grade dancer of B-grade repute can't really boast of cultivated conversation, right?

    The film takes us into the life of a small-town girl, Reshma (Vidya Balan) who speedily escapes to uptown Madras to live her celluloid dreams. After being turned down time and again, she manages to tease the camera lens and accidently lands a dancing

    Read More »from The Dirty Picture review


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