Archive for the the good Category

An Jo on Sarkar 3

Posted in the good on May 21, 2017 by munna

Spoilers ahead…
That Ramu is in love with Amitabh’s angry young man portrayals is hardly debatable. What is debatable, however, is whether this love with a man’s cinematic history is able to take the artist-muse-dynamic a notch higher; at least with Ramu.
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Salim’s Viewing! (updated)

Posted in the good on May 12, 2017 by Satyam

Nayantara’s Necklace (Short)
Konkona’s presence drew me to this. Watchable and somewhat intriguing.

Head and Tales
Translated screenplays of Gulzar’s Aandhi and Hu Tu Tu

Always a pleasure to revisit this Gulzar classic. Two very fine performers in Sanjeev and Suchitra, and what a soundtrack.

One of my most favourite films. Needs to be seen at least once a year.
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Naveen on Baahubali 2

Posted in the good on April 27, 2017 by munna

Baahubali is the greatest Hindu Epic on screen!!!

Very rarely you see religious symbols being used so effectively to build characters and connect with the audience. While Baahubali showed love for Shiva, Shivling….Baahibali 2 extends it to Ganesh and Krishna apart from several other Hindu Symbols which appeals to the viewers in a Huge Huge way. The main reason for me sticking this out is the effect it has on audience when shown with the compelling story line and grandeur sets.

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Salim on Kaatru Veliyidai

Posted in the good on April 19, 2017 by Satyam

Going to see a new Mani Rathnam movie, one feels unusually assured that they will be treated to a few hours of high-quality cinema. Given that we no longer live in the 1950s when Bimal Roy and Guru Dutt led a pack of highly esteemed film-makers regularly delivering decent cinema even in their weakest creations, Mani Sir stands relatively alone. Kaatru Veliyidai however is not easy viewing and both the characters as well as the world in which they lived are worlds apart from the director’s last offering, the delightful OK Kanmani. Staple Rathnam features such as Rahman in top-form and gasp-inducing cinematography by Ravi Varman however never let us forget that we are in the hands of a master who is able to optimally use these aspects of cinema regardless of the genre.
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Scattered thoughts on Kaatru Veliyidai..

Posted in the good on April 14, 2017 by Satyam

[this will sound like a perverse joke but what follows actually originated as a set of thoughts on twitter..!]

Kaatru Veliyidai affirms once more what ought to be beyond debate by now. There isn’t anyone quite like Mani Ratnam in Indian commercial cinema even after all these years. I am not doing a review of any sort here, just offering scattered thoughts. Ratnam as a craftsman is still at the height of his powers. Barring Raavan(an) this might be his best film in that formalist sense in at least fifteen years or so. In some of the film’s best montages he even exhibits a kind of Kurosawa-like spontaneity, which is to say a whole series of dazzling shots ranging across different registers. Visually this film is a feast (though I wish Ratnam would not use FX even to the limited extent he does, much as in Raavan it shows and in a work of such stylistic finesse it jumps out even more). This includes of course his song videos. The Tango (also my favorite track on the album) is quite simply one of his masterpieces.
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Why I Have Nothing to Say on Dangal

Posted in the good with tags , , , , , , , , , , on March 18, 2017 by Qalandar



I more than enjoyed Dangal: it was fantastically well-made, uniformly well-acted, and pulled off the difficult feat of making wrestling interesting, even deeply engrossing – that’s creditable, when you consider that most sports movies rely on the built-in appeal of sports that are already popular, with great cultural resonance. Heck, to even make a sports film – i.e. a film in one of the most hackneyed genres – half decent, let alone excellent, is pretty darn impressive.

And yet, when I (more than once, and over a period of a few months) sat down to write a review of Dangal, I found I had nothing to say. Which might make this piece nothing more than a narcissistic exercise in my writer’s block, but I’d like to believe there’s more going on here. The “nothing” is symptomatic of a wider issue, namely that Dangal is a very impressive film – just not a very interesting one. Continue reading

The Soviet Union and Indian cinema

Posted in the good on February 16, 2017 by Satyam


“Many younger viewers found the physical types foregrounded in Indian films worthy models of emulation, whether it was trying to style their hair or dress in a fashion similar to their screen idol. Young Katia Marginovskaia considered film star Rekha to be the single most important recollection she had of an eighties film. ‘I remember vividly the colour of Rekha’s sari … apple green. In our grey lives, we literally happened into a fantasy world…. I had never seen anything like this.’”

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