Pop Vulture

  • Madonna’s 12th studio album, MDNA, betrays the diva’s obsession with being young and contemporary. That said, it’s also an insistence that had led to an incredibly polished product

    Rating: 8/10

    There is something to be said for Madonna’s obsession with youth: her 12th studio album is titled MDNA, a play on MDMA, the party drug that heady teenagers tend to club to, occasionally with disastrous results. Two of the twelve tracks adorning MDNA have the word ‘girl’ in it (‘Girl Gone Wild’ and ‘Some Girls’). Fortunately, it is also an obsession that sees Madonna on top of her game at 53. And being 53 also means that she’s trying doubly as hard to produce cutting-edge pop.
    Miraculously, with MDNA, the effort pays off. It locates itself on the thin line between a petulant insistence on being trendy at any cost and being a truly gobsmacking product. Those sound mixers must have cost a lot of money. Where her voice fails (it was never that great, in fact) her DJs

    Read More »from Great Singer, Terrible Actress
  • 10 Sexy Scandals

    With starlet Nupur Mehta trapped in a match-fixing storm, here are 10 Bollywood babes who starred in national scandals

    1. Mandakini (1993)
    If there were a Nobel Prize for notoriety, Mandakini would have won it hands-down. Her entry with Ram Teri Ganga Maili made her a household name (she appeared in a diaphanous sari revealing her breasts). Then after a string of flops, she began to be seen in the company of a certain Mr. D (read Dawood Ibrahim), playing arm candy to him at matches in Sharjah, weird stuff like that. Then post the Mumbai bomb blasts of 1993, Mandakini literally vanished once Dawood Ibrahim was cited as the culprit behind the carnage. An entire generation is obsessed with the idea of her being Dawood Ibrahim's mistress, that the don himself had sired a son thanks to her. Today, Mandakini, leads a very different life. She is married to a descendent of the Dalai Lama called Dr Kagyur T Rinpoche Thakur. He gives yoga classes under the name of R. Thakur in a neighbourhood Read More »from 10 Sexy Scandals
  • With Ashmit Patel posing in the buff for an underwear campaign in a men’s magazine recently, we bring you 10 Bollywooders who went naked before the camera

    The actress had a rendezvous with Shashi Kapoor in Siddhartha that raised quite a few eyebrows in the ‘70s

    1.Simi Garewal in ‘Mera Naam Joker’ and ‘Siddhartha’ (1972) – Newly returned from England, Simi Garewal bagged some of the most prestigious films from her generation, though she never found the commercial success of her peers. In both ‘Mera Naam Joker’ by Raj Kapoor and ‘Siddhartha’, a film adapted from Hermann Hesse’s novel of the same name (both 1972), she sheds her quintessential whites and pretty much everything else too.

    Protima Bedi stirred a hornet's nest with her morning jog in 1974

    2.Protima Bedi in the Cine Blitz promotional campaign (1974) – Celebrated danseuse and Kabir Bedi’s bohemian wife stripped down to nothing and ran naked on Juhu beach as part of a promotional campaign to launch filmi rag Cine Blitz in 1974. She made headlines, naturally.

    Dimple’s sarong getting undone led to a nude scene that lasted less than a second. Yet, it was the most rewound scene of 1985.
    3. Dimple Kapadia in ‘Saagar’ (1985) – Her introduction to Rishi Kapoor in the film went like this: a young village belle goes for a dip in the

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  • Sayali BhagatA tell-all email that cast Big B as a villain has petered down to two players: a starlet and a princeling
    It started out with an email sent by two-month-old Crème talent agency to various media houses, a virtual scarlet letter that went viral within hours. And not for nothing: the press release stated that former Miss India, Sayali Bhagat, was quitting Bollywood to pursue a modelling career in Milan. But this international move wasn't the only reason for her supposed flight from tinsel town. There were other reasons too: because Amitabh Bachchan allegedly grabbed her buttocks when she bent down to touch his feet at an event, tainting the servile namaste that the Hindi film industry is so keen on; because actor-director Sajid Khan was allegedly buck naked when he invited her for an audition for a role in Housefull; because Aarya Babbar allegedly took the trouble to click his genitals and packaged them as a neat MMS sent to her inbox.

    This was the string of allegations on Monday

    Read More »from The Curious Case of Sayali Bhagat
  • An American Tintin

    TintinOne of the criticisms that came the film's way was that Steven Spielberg hadn't read Tintin properly when he considered adapting it to the big screen. That like most Americans he wasn't very conversant with the hero's European legacy. Fact is that Spielberg had initially responded to Tintin purely on a visual impulse; when studying French in high school he held a French language edition of the comic book series in one hand and a dictionary in the other. The other rue was that an American director making Tintin would do injustice to the character's European legacy, "the prism of post-war Europe" as an article in The Economist put it across.

    A special preview of The Adventures of Tintin by Steven Spielberg proved that both these laments might have been a bit premature. For starters, even if the character of Tintin is quintessentially European, European filmmaking itself has neither the financial nor technical prowess to create the sort of gobsmacking spectacle that Spielberg's Tintin

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  • Twin Peaks

    A still from ChargesheetChargesheet is a delicious, demented ride with a slutty line-up of starlets and ageing supremos such as Jackie Shroff and Naseeruddin Shah in very earnest performances

    That it was screening at Fame Adlabs, Bombay's first multiplex that is now as gratifyingly derelict as a single theatre, adds to the avant-garde-ness of Chargesheet, Dev Anand's latest directorial venture. And equally delightful is the fact that Warner Brothers has released this marvel: you do see a gilded photograph of warehouses with a post-production ripple as a 'WB' languidly fades into vision. It is no rare feat for a man who clocked two fat ladies last week, complete with a cozy press gathering at the retro Sun-n-Sand hotel in Juhu. The man is 88, but the film is made with the pre-pubescent glee of an 8-year-old; its gaze is obsessed with the breasts of its actresses and the film goes that extra mile to showcase them from all angles.

    A still from ChargesheetThe plot goes like this: Naseeruddin Shah plays a don who is so intoxicated by the

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