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Rann February 5, 2010

Posted by Shujath in Hindi, Movies, Reviews.
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Ramu’s take on the media looks more like a Bhandarkar-esque affair – still it works because the film doesn’t compel you to take it seriously. This is a theme whose Bollywoodization was long overdue and even if the end result seems inexcusably dumbed-down, it is still fairly engaging. I actually loved Paresh Rawal as the vile politician – it’s been so long since he has played a role like this. Even though it is hands down the most throwback eighties character you’ve probably seen on screen these days.

My favorite nevertheless was Mohnish Behl – as the scheming head-honcho of a news channel he is top class – would love to see him more on the big screen. Sudeep, Suchitra and Rajpal Yadav are also impressive. Surprisingly the lead characters – Amitabh and Ritesh are the most uninteresting characters of the entire enterprise. The latter especially plays the dumbest investigative journalist ever – somebody please tell him that there is a silent mode on a cell phone, a rear view mirror to a car and that it is possible to make copies of DVDs.

Rann is far from being among RGV’s better films, still it makes the cut when you compare it with his more recent ventures. Worth a look.

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Dhamaal September 20, 2007

Posted by Sai in Hindi, Movies, Reviews.
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Indra Kumar’s latest offering is inspired from Stanley Kramer’s overlong and overcrowded slapstick comedy, Its a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World. The plot is simple. A dying man reveals the secret about a ton of money hidden in Goa to a bunch of bumbling friends. A policeman is after them for the secret. They manage to give him the slip and now all of them are on the run trying to uncover the money. The friends are divided midway and the chase is on to get to the money first. What ensues is a sidesplitting set of events giving the audience enough laughs for their money.

Director Indra Kumar has always shown some flair for slapstick and he does an adequate job here. Comic fare needs a capable person at the helm and Kumar is up to the task here. A lot of gags in the film are inspired from different sources (the writing is credited to Balwinder Suri, Paritosh Painter and Bunty Rathod, all of whom have very limited experience) but they still need to be executed well.

The cast is quite good. With actors like Arshad Warsi, Javed Jaffrey, Ritesh Deshmukh and Sanjay Dutt, you can’t go very wrong. Javed is the pick of the lot here with his body language, diction, expressions and timing working just right. He is one actor with so much untapped potential and he once again shows what he is capable of. Ritesh comes a close second and his Sanjeev Kumar imitation is superb. Surprisingly though, Arshad is average while Sanjay is disappointing. Aashish Chowdhary (Qayamat, Girlfriend) and Asrani do well as father and son while Vijay Raaz (Raghu Romeo, Run) is quite funny in his cameo.

The film has no love angle and that means there is limited scope for music. A couple of numbers are included nonetheless and done away with early in the film. Adnan Sami’s compositions don’t make an impression.

Overall, this film succeeds in making the audience laugh. Kids should enjoy this. There is nothing intelligent about it and the climax doesn’t gel with the rest of the film. However, I still enjoyed the film and if you really like slapstick, you should check this out.

Heyy Babyy September 12, 2007

Posted by Sai in Hindi, Movies, Reviews.
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This film deals with the life of three bachelors who seem to have no other job except to bed one woman after another. Their life suddenly changes when a baby girl is left at their doorstep with a claim that one of them is their father. They spend their time taking care of the kid and end up losing their jobs/money. They decide to abandon the child. A near-death experience for the baby brings about a change in them and they start developing a strong bond with her. At this point, the mother takes back her child. Now the guys try everything they can to get the child back. Will the baby help unite their parents?

Akshay Kumar and Ritesh Deshmukh do fine as expected but Fardeen Khan, who I used to consider a bad actor, seems to have improved over time at least as far as comedy goes. Vidya Balan, who has made an impression with all her previous roles, doesn’t come up trumps this time. The baby is cute but has little else to do except being herself. There are a host of guest appearances from a ton of actresses who are trying to make it in the industry. And good friend Shahrukh throws in a special appearance. Composers Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy deliver a first-rate soundtrack that includes foot-tapping numbers like Hey Baby and Jaane Bhi De as well as the lilting Meri Duniya. These certainly add to the film.

Like sister Farah Khan and brother-in-law Shirish Kunder, well known anchor Sajid Khan too jumps onto the directorial bandwagon (he did direct an episode in the Ram Gopal Varma production Darna Zaroori Hai earlier). Though it has the ingredients to be a box office hit, this isn’t a good film by any stretch of imagination. Going by his efforts in television, one had hoped for a much better film from Sajid Khan but he disappoints.

The first half of this film is filled with mostly childish humor. It does bring about a few smiles but largely it didn’t work for me. The emotional aspect did not make an impression on me either. However, there was an improvement in the second half of the film and it did make me laugh. Overall, this is only an average film that is not to be taken seriously and could appeal to those who have enjoyed recent comedies like Partner very much.

As I see it, this is an eighties film with a stylistic upgrade. The writing by Sajid is amateurish and anyone whose seen a lot of hindi movies can predict what is going to happen next. Most of the emotions are conveyed through dialogue and not really developed or felt. Such a lack of subtext is a clear indication of poor writing and direction. I had expected a much better film from Sajid Khan but he makes the kind of films that he has criticized in the past (maybe a little less over-the-top). Give me Shirish Kunder or Farah Khan anyday. Shirish Kunder’s superior grip on technical aspects was clearly on display in Jaan-e-mann while Farah Khan succeeded in her aim of making a masala seventies style film that walked the tightrope between laughing at itself and making the audience laugh. I liked the episode directed by Sajid in Darna Zaroori Hai but this film is a disappointment. This film has an audience but I am not a part of that audience and I hope Sajid makes a better film next time.

Lastly, a note to Sajid: “You may like the great Hrishikesh Mukherjee and might have been acquainted with him but please Sajid, stop using his name in reference to this film”.