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Love Sex aur Dhokha March 22, 2010

Posted by Shujath in Articles, Hindi, Movies, Reviews.
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After being successfully deployed in Hollywood Horror flicks (and firmly embarked on the path of overkill), the lost-footage-from-camera genre finally makes its debut in Bollywood – and a smashing one at that. And no….this isn’t about any unknown entity spooking you out in the end but a grindhouse format 3-movies-in-1 tale of Love, Sex and Dhokha.

More in line with his last film, rather than the plot or even the format – the beauty about LSD are the wonderful characters created by Banerjee (equally well performed by all the actors). The plot hardly qualifies to be called a thriller but it is just too engrossing to take your eyes off it even for a minute. The way the three stories are interlinked is also great. LSD is truly path-breaking cinema and Dibakar Banerjee is a genius….period.

But beware… if you are planning the watch the movie only for the much publicized “scandalous scenes” you’ll be really pissed (like I noticed a lot of people were).

PS: The end credits which come in with the title track were cut-off at the edges of the screen. At first I thought, it was some issue with the projection system but when that effect was visible simultaneously at all parts of the screen….it seemed like a deliberate grindhouse effect. Somehow, that seemed lame in an otherwise great flick.

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Oye Lucky! Lucky Oye! November 30, 2008

Posted by Shujath in Hindi, Movies, Reviews.
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After the wonderful Khosla Ka Ghosla in 2006, director Dibakar Banerjee returns with Oye Lucky! Lucky Oye!. Revolving around the life of a thief – supposed to be inspired from a real life character called “Bunty”, OLLO traces the story of Lucky (Abhay Deol) who effortlessly steals cars, usual stuff from rich homes and um…pretty much everything actually. We catch glimpses of his not-so-happy childhood barring his teenage love, his never ending exploits as a thief – involving his sidekick Bangali (Manu Rishi), forced Godfather Goga Bhai (Paresh Rawal) and new-found love Sonal (Neetu Chandra). There are two more Paresh Rawals who Lucky has to deal with elsewhere in the film.

This film is more like a semi-biopic of Lucky and in this regard I think the promos were a bit misleading in suggesting it to be somewhat a comic thriller. Though it isn’t one there is enough happening so that you never get bored at any point of time. Like his previous film OLLO relies mostly on its colorful characters and understated humor – in fact the humor here is far more subtle and that’s the reason it takes some time before the film starts growing on you. On the flipside, I thought the social satire aspect didn’t work too well. Also, the ease with which Lucky robs stuff seems too far-fetched. A couple of instances are funny and believable but then it is suggested that he is successful umpteen times using a similar bunch of tricks.

There’s a scene here about handling a watch-dog which apart from being quite informative was a genuine ROFL moment I’ve had in a long time. Also, check out that equally funny scene when Paresh Rawal is trying to hit Lucky and in the background Lucky’s little brother gets into the mood with some hilarious air-moves. The film has a strong Punjabi flavor accentuated by a jarring musical score but thankfully it doesn’t creep too much into the dialogue; otherwise I surely would have missed some of the humor.

Abhay Deol adds another impressive film to his already super-impressive filmography. As usual he is a complete natural and absolutely at ease with his character. In the film, it might be hard to believe his robberies but there’s no wonder why his victims and even the police seemed to love him. Though it’s high time he got his due in mainstream cinema, I’d still love to see him continue doing what he’s been at till now. Neetu Chandra is wonderful yet again. I was quite impressed by her in Traffic Signal and Godavari; and once again she puts up an extremely convincing act. Her’s is quite a short role but it’s one of the very few instances in films where you get to see in a very believable way how a girl is attracted to someone when commonsense should suggest otherwise. Paresh Rawal and Archana Puran Singh are the only other known faces and they are quite good too. I couldn’t get the significance of having Paresh in three different roles – maybe it was supposed to mean that each was an unpleasant father-figure in different phases of Lucky’s life.

There’s a big list of highly impressive debutants here. Topping the list is the greeting card shop girl (I couldn’t figure out her name). Manjot Singh who plays Lucky in his teens is also too good. Ditto for Manu Rishi (as Lucky’s sidekick) and Dolly Chadda. Dibakar Banerjee doesn’t try to make OLLO a crowd pleaser like Khosla Ka Ghosla. Though it is more flawed it is actually a much smarter film than the latter. If it’s something you like then there’s also a Johnny Gaddaar like homage to vintage slapped all over it. I think I missed a few things in the film on first viewing, so would definitely be catching it once again after a few months on TV or DVD. Go and watch OLLO with an open mind – it’s a nice addition to the list of genuinely hatke films we’ve had this year.