Friday, January 31, 2014

One by Two

Cast: Abhay Deol, Preeti Desai, Rati Agnihotri, Lillette Dubey, Darshan Jariwala, Jayant Kripalani, Diwakar Pundir, Geetika Tyagi, Maya Sarao, Yudhishtir Urs, Anish Trivedi, Preetika Chawla, Tahir Bhasin, Yashika Dhillon
Genre: Comedy, Romance
Direction: Devika Bhagat
Production: Amit Kapoor, Abhay Deol, Sanjay Kapoor, Vikram Khakhar, Viacom 18 Motion Pictures
Story: Devika Bhagat
Screenplay : Devika Bhagat
Cinematographer: Sameer Arya
Music: Shankar, Ehsaan, Loy
Editing : Shan Mohammed
Studio : Anil Kapoor Films Company, PVR Pictures, Viacom 18 Motion Pictures
Distribution: Cynozure Networkz
Release Date: 31st January, 2014
Language: Hindi
Duration: 2 hours 20 minutes
Rating: 2.75/3 (Average +)
One by Two is a film which tracks down the lives of two protagonists parallelly. I can not actually put it under the genre of Romance or Comedy as such, but yes, it deals with certain complexities of love, profession, dreams, aspirations, ambitions, relationships, parental concerns in a lighter manner.
Amit Sharma (Abhay Deol) essays the role of an individual whose left / right hemisphere of the brain both seems to be in conflict with one another adding confusion to his life. Though being a software professional whom boss / colleagues trust, he is neither at his optimum best in his professional life nor in personal life. He is complacent with the fact that he is boring in his approach towards life. His way of handling rejections in relationships are not overdone. His mood swings, casual yet sensitive relationships with parents, perseverance to win back the girlfriend, his annoying flatulence (though this humour was out of place), his approach in life with a spectator’s attitude are effortlessly played by Abhay Deol. A nagging mother Meenu Sharma (Rati Agnihotri) and one-liner witty Susheel Sharma (Jayant Kripalani) portrayed their roles realistically.
Another protagonist Samara Patel (Preeti Desai) plays the role of a dancer, aspiring to make it big. Choreographer Ashley Lobo’s signature dance moves are well projected by Samara. Her efforts to give priorities / value to relationships, yielding in love at times, singing aloud ‘Kaboom’ on road soon after break-up projects the attitude of the character. The tumultuous life of a mother Kalpana Patel (Lillette Dubey) capsized in a drunken state handled by a loving and a caring daughter is quiet watchable.
The film’s portrayal of police officers less in action, more in Shero-Shayari adds zest to the whole plot. Darshan Jariwala’s affectionate Mamu act to Abhay Deol is good. Other actors viz. Diwakar Pundir, Geetika Tyagi, Maya Sarao, Yudhishtir Urs, Anish Trivedi, Preetika Chawla, Tahir Bhasin, Yashika Dhillon also do a pretty decent job.
Devika Bhagat’s attempt to give a fresh approach to tell a story (of two) through her direction, story and screenplay is appreciable but one can not deny the fact that it has flaws as well. The first half is a drag. One keeps wondering and waiting for the two protagonists to meet each other but ….. oh, let me not reveal the same that when do their paths actually intersect.
Lyrics by Amitabh Bhattacharya is good who has used catchphrases- Kaboom, Khushfehmiyan, Pakaoed, Khuda na Khasta… Shankar-Ehsaan-Leo have definitely unplugged melodious ‘Khushfehmiyan…’, ‘Baat kya hai...’ very well.
One by Two is not for you, if you want to enjoy Romance or Comedy. 
One by Two is for you, if you want to watch a light-hearted movie with a feel-good factor (with occasionally just the opposite).

Indeed this is a One by Two movie since where this movie ends, it is left to the imagination of the audience whether it is actually an end or a new beginning for the protagonists appearing not in a split-screen but in single screen in a sequel.

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Jai Ho

Cast: Salman Khan, Tabu, Danny Denzongpa, Daisy Shah, Sana Khan, Mahesh Manjrekar, Aditya Pancholi, Mohnish Behl, Nadira Babbar, Ashmit Patel, Yash Tonk, Mukul Dev, Nauheed Cyrusi, Bruna Abdullah, Genelia, Vikas Bhalla, Sunil Shetty, Santosh Shukla, Pulkit Samrat
Genre: Drama, Action
Direction: Sohail Khan
Production: Sohail Khan, Sunil Lulla
Story: A. Murugadoss (Based on Telugu Film Stalin)
Screenplay : Dilip Shukla
Cinematographer: Santosh Thundiyil
Music: Sajid-Wajid, Devi Sri Prasad, Amal Malik, Sandeep Shirodkar (Background score)
Editing : Harsh Tiwari
Studio : Sohail Khan Productions
Distribution: Eros International
Release Date: 24th January, 2014
Language: Hindi
Duration: 2 hours 30 minutes
Rating: 2/5 (Average)
Please watch Jai Ho (जय हो) only if you are a die-hard fan of Salman Khan. Otherwise, this movie is a great disappointment as far as the plot of the movie, direction, story, screenplay are concerned. It is a fact that Salman has been a great mass puller with his Dabbang / Bodyguard / Wanted moves, but he may probably not be able to repeat his success. Salman Khan is playing the role of an ex-army officer, Jai Agnihotri. He wants to create a better nation. The effort was to convey that even an ordinary single human being can be a change catalyst and create a national stir for positive change. But the whole message gets diluted with the way it has been handled. I wish, atleast a particular social issue could have been focused upon. There were lot of instances of Salman being a good Samaritan, but it seemed too superficial, it is tough to identify with the character. It lacked the flavor of country’s present political scenario. We have seen enough of Salman’s one-man action sequences which are there in this as well, added with Salman’s bites or roars.
Riya Agnihotri (Salman’s Sister played by Tabu) is unconditional in her love towards her brother and has got good amount of screen time. It is always a pleasure to watch Tabu perform, but she doesn’t have to do much. Daisy Shah has definitely given some good dance moments, and also, she has screen presence, but her role has not been sketched out properly. And there are a list of actors (get breathless): Nadira Babbar, Danny Denzongpa, Daisy Shah, Sana Khan, Mahesh Manjrekar, Aditya Pancholi, Mohnish Behl, Mukul Dev, Ashmit Patel, Yash Tonk, Nauheed Cyrusi, Bruna Abdullah, Genelia, Vikas Bhalla, Sunil Shetty, Santosh Shukla, Pulkit Samrat… and many more…They come and go without actually being able to make a remarkable impact upon the audience. Too many characters are introduced.
Background score by Sandeep Shirodkar is good. ‘Tere Naina maar hi daalenge’ is also good. Other songs by Sajid-Wajid are average. Sets during the dance sequences are huge and presentable.

Is this going to be a ‘Jai Ho’ at box office ?

Saturday, January 11, 2014


Cast: Himansh Kohli, Serah Singh, Dev Sharma, Rakul Preet Singh, Nicole Faria, Evyleen Sharma, Gulshan Grover, Deepti Naval, Smita Jaykar
Genre: Romance
Direction: Divya Khosla Kumar
Production: Bhushan Kumar, Krishan Kumar
Story: Divya Khosla Kumar
Screenplay : Divya Khosla Kumar, Sanjeev Dutta
Cinematographer: Samir Aarya
Music: Pritam, Mithoon, Arko Pravo Mukherjee, Anupam Amod, Honey Singh
Editing : Aarif Sheikh
Studio : T. Series
Release Date: 10th January, 2014
Language: Hindi
Duration: 2 hours 25 minutes
Rating: 1/5 (Poor)
Yaariyan (यारियां) is a mindless film without any purpose. The theme is based on a College Romance. Bollywood has witnessed wonderful College Campus based movies like Jo Jeeta Vahi Sikandar. The film is made keeping youth-audience in mind, but it is an insult to their intelligence. There is nothing to save this film. Divya Khosla Kumar disappoints as a director. Her characters are superficial, story is shallow and the execution falls apart.
One keeps wondering what the director wants to convey. A bunch of aimless students are shown, who are in the college just for Masti but given a huge task by Principal (Gulshan Grover) to save the college from not being sold. The college campus seems to be more of a party-ground where every now and then parties, racing, swayamvars are thrown. None of the students are shown focused in life which is not today’s youth (who definitely know where they want to head in their lives). The second half tries to build up the story on themes viz. love, patriotism, competition, mother-son emotions etc. but it turns out to be illogical. Dialogues with double meanings, girls in minis are very very unimpressive. Even credible stars viz. Gulshan Grover, Deepti Naval, Smitha Jaykar’s acting skills are under-utilized.
The screenplay and editing both are pathetic. Cinematography in few frames are good. Music is also good upto an extent. The film may get an audience who would love to laugh at silly jokes, but otherwise, it is a poorly crafted film.

“Yaariyan” should have been named as “Yawniyan”. 

Dedh Ishqiya

Cast: Naseeruddin Shah, Madhuri Dixit, Arshad Warsi, Vijay Raaz, Huma Qureshi, Manoj Pahwa, Ravi Gossain
Genre: Comedy, Romance
Direction: Abhishek Chaubey
Production: Raman Maroo, Vishal Bhardwaj
Story: Daroob Faruqi
Screenplay : Gulzar, Vishal Bhardwaj, Abhishek Chaubey
Cinematographer: Setu
Music: Vishal Bhardwaj
Editing : A. Sreekar Prasad
Studio : Shemaroo Entertainment, Vishal Bhardwaj Pictures
Distribution: Shemaroo Entertainment
Release Date: 10th January, 2014
Language: Hindi (& Urdu)
Duration: 2 hours 33 minutes
Rating: 4/5 (Very Good)
Dedh Ishqiya (डेढ़ इश्किया ) is definitely a movie with actors, Urdu dialogues, editing, cinematography, sets, costumes of class. Madhuri Dixit looks gorgeous and radiant as widowed Begum Para Jaan and one can’t take eyes off her when she is on screen. Huma Qureshi as Muniya stands at par with her effortless performance. Combination of small time thieves Khalujan alias Ifthekhar (Naseeruddin Shah) and Babban alias Razzaakh Hussain (Arshad Warsi) is great with their banter, blame-games and all. They con a jewellery store owner and flee with an expensive necklace. Ifthekhar walks into the swayamwar of Begum. His pretense as poetry-spouting nawab to woo Begum is played with ease. Babban is full of energy and very natural in his attempt to woo Muniya. Unrelenting Jaan Mohammad is exemplarily played by Vijay Raaz. His efforts to learn Shero-Shayari and to understand the ‘Matla’ raises laughter. Manoj Pahwa as the poet in captivity and Salman Shahid as an eccentric gang-lord do complete justice to their roles.
Shooting has been done at Mahmudabad Palace near Barabanki. Dialogues are sharp. Urdu sounds so good. It is a complete visual treat to watch Madhuri dance to Pandit Birju Maharaj’s choreography. Music is more of classical based and different. Poetries are fabulous. The plot has been developed with great intensity. Storytelling has been done with great finesse.

Dedh Ishqiya is definitely more enthralling than Ishqiya. It is a must watch for people who enjoyed Ishqiya.

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Mr. Joe B. Carvalho

Cast: Arshad Warsi, Soha Ali Khan, Jaaved Jaafrey, Vijay Raaz
Genre: Comedy
Direction: Samir Tewari
Production: Bholaram Malviya & Shital Malviya
Distribution: B.R. Entertainment
Story: Mahesh Ramchandani
Screenplay: Mahesh Ramchandani
Cinematographer: Aseem Bajaj
Music: Amartya Rahut
Editing: Dharmendra Sharma
Language: Hindi
Duration: 2 hours 10 minutes
Release Date: 3rd January, 2014
Rating : 1/5 (Poor)

Mr. Joe. B. Carvalho is the name of the titular character essayed by Arshad Warsi, a crazy detective. The film is actually about जो भी करवालोwith actors of caliber. Samir Tewari probably wanted to make a clean comedy but his efforts turn out to be mindless.   

Joe, in his quest for a truly challenging case (given to him by a rich man Khurana- Shakti Kapoor) that can bring in money and fame, he accidently gets entangled in a series of events that is enough to drive him, and the audience nuts. Joe himself is clueless where he is heading and happens to be at the ‘wrong place’ at ‘right time’. His ex-flame and now a Inspector Shantipriya Phadnis (Soha Ali Khan) does some dabbang scenes. Lollypop-sucking Carlos (Jaaved Jaafrey) has sported quirky looks every time he comes on screen. M.K. (Vijay Raaz) is always on a trail.  Other characters are fireworks trader Virani (Ranjeet), a shooter Malik (Babul Supriyo), Joe’s Mom (Himani Shivpuri), Commissioner Pandey (Manoj Joshi), Neena (Karishma Kotak), General Kopa Bhalerao Kabana (Snehal Dhabi), a cameo appearance by Kunal Khemu.

Arshad Warsi is definitely able to bring some brightness into audience face with his effortless comic timings, but he is not able to create wonders due to loosely knit script. It is so disheartening to see Jaaved Jaafrey wasting his talents in doing roles like Carlos. Music fails to impress. The film is shot at Mumbai, Goa and Bangalore.

You can completely give a miss to this movie.   

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Ezhu Sundara Rathrikal

Cast: Dileep, Reema Kallingal, Murli Gopy, Harishree Ashokan, Parvathy Nambiar
Genre: Comedy
Direction: Lal Jose
Production: Rathish Ambat, Prakash Varma, Jerry John Kallatt
Story: James Albert
Cinematographer: Pradeesh Varma
Music: Prashant Pillai
Editing: Ranjan Abraham
Language: Malayalam
Duration: 2 hours 23 minutes
Release Date: 20th December, 2013
Rating: 2/5 (Average)

Ezhu Sundara Rathrikal (ഏഴു സുന്ദര രാത്രികൾ) is a sequence of unpredictable events that unfolds during a course of seven days and nights of a bridegroom-in-waiting. It depicts how his life is tossed over when he happens to meet his ex-flame once again before his D’day.

Aby Mathew (Dileep) is an ad film-maker who is about to marry his model Ann (Parvathy Nambiar). Aby throws a bachelors party for his bunch of friends viz. Abid (Harishree Ashokan), Franco (Tiny Tom), Daisy (Praveena) and a few others just seven days before the marriage. Through Abid, Aby learns of his ex-flame Sini’s (Reema Kallinga) presence in the same city with whom he had a fall-out just a few days before their marriage. An inebriated Aby decides to go to Sini to invite her for his marriage. Sini talks high of her husband Alex (Murli Gopy), a boxer, with whom she has a son as well. Aby also boasts of his fiancée. 

The events take an ugly turn when Aby and Sini’s paths cross again and again. The duo sets out hazy attempts to retrace their steps and discover where things go wrong.  But the audience gets clueless till almost the end of the movie in connecting various events happening. The script falls flat in terms of justifying why a character is behaving in a particular manner. There is a hurried attempt at the last 15 minutes of the movie which seems to project forced connections amongst various people and events.

Director Lal Jose tries to explore the hollowness of relationships in this movie but somewhere gets lost in the maze of people entangled in the same.  

Cinematography by Pradessh Varma is good in certain frames. Music disappoints. Overall, the movie and its subject could have been handled in a much better manner. 

Wednesday, January 1, 2014


Revised from to 4.5, based on popular feedback

Cast: Mohanlal, Meena, Siddique, Asha Sarath, Kalabhavan Shajon, Ansiba Hassan, Esther
Genre: Family Drama – Thriller
Direction: Jeethu Joseph
Production: Antony Perumbavoor under the banner of Ashirvad Cinemas
Cinematographer: Sujith Vassudev
Music: Anil Johnson and Vinu Thomas
Duration: 2 hours 43 minutes
Rating: 4/5 (Very Good)

Drishyam (ദൃശ്യം) is a 2013 family drama-thriller Malayalam film written and directed by  Jeethu Jospeh starring Mohanlal and Meena in the lead roles. The film starts with a tag line that “Visuals can be deceiving” and it actually lives up to it. George Kutty (wonderfully essayed by Mohanlal) is an orphan and 4th class dropout who is running a local Cable TV network. He is a big movie buff who watches movies in a much focused manner and many of his decisions are influenced by the same. The movie portrays good family moments where George Kutty tries to be stingy (he has his own justifications for the same) and his wife Rani (Meena) occasionally demands of shopping, enjoying movie in a theater and food in a restaurant.

George Kutty, Rani and their two kids Anju (Ansiba Hassan) and Anu (Esther) together form a beautiful family picture until an unprecedented event hits them. The audience gets completely absorbed in the twist of events that begin to unfold from the end of the first half. The second half is more like a thriller and is about how the family, despite the vengeful villainy of a corrupt cop Sahadevan (Kalabhavan Shajon), stands its ground even as the law takes its course. The psychological cat-and-mouse game that ensues between George Kutty and the lady IPS officer Geetha Prabhakaran (Asha Sarath) has several moments that thriller buffs will dig into with delight. What is appreciable however is the adversary's acceptance of defeat, and the eventual respect that the two develop for each other. Prabhakaran (Siddique), husband of Geeta Prabhakaran also plays a vital role who seems to have non-biased approach. The movie doesn’t try to justify what is right and wrong. It showcases the journey of a head of the family who protects his family by all means.

Sujith Vaasudev was successful in capturing the visual beauty of Rajakkad-Idukki. Music scored by Anil Johnson and Vinu Thomas was good. The editor's table was safe with Ayoob Khan. Overall, the movie Drishyam has been packaged well.