Friday, May 31, 2024

Laapataa Ladies

What a story and how well has it been narrated! Disguised as a comedy film, this movie subtly touches upon how women find themselves in rural India - married off young, sometimes against their wishes, made to pull their veil over their faces, and what not. In a comic situation, a young groom, Deepak Kumar deboards a train with a wrong bride, who was also travelling in the same cubicle as the original couple. The goof up is realized once they reach home. A parallel story develops when Deepak’s wife, Phool finds herself alone at an unknown railway station. She is a simple girl who does not remember name of the village she was destined to, so unaware of the big bad world outside that she chooses to live in the platform. Her innocence goes miles when she chooses to wear her bridal saree everyday so that her newly wed husband can recognize her when he comes to look for her. The story underlines her interpersonal skills and cooking abilities, as she slowly carves out her niche.

Back in the village, Jaya takes the chance offered to her by destiny. She assumes a false identity, and stays back with Deepak’s family. She helps them to solve problems of insects in crop without using pesticides and also encourages the women in the family to assert their preferences and believe in themselves. Veteran actor Ravi Kishan plays the paan chewing, corrupt police officer who finds Jaya, but supports her to follow her dreams.

A key takeaway from the film is that in reality, women are capable of looking after themselves, and dont need men much.

The cast is new, some of them include debutants (Pratibha Ratna and Nitanshi Goel). Sparsh Srivastava bring alive the village boy character. 

A must-watch film for everyone. 

Image courtesy: Google 

Friday, May 24, 2024

Murder Mubarak

You are reminded of Hercule Poirot when Bhavani Singh (Pankaj Tripathi), Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) comes to investigate death of a fitness trainer in a fictitious club in Delhi (Royal Delhi Club or RDC). Autopsy reveals traces of a drug and an apparent accident transforms into a murder. What follows is development of the plot by revealing dark secrets of everyone’s lives and finally telling the audience who the actual murderer was. The rest of the star studded cast consist of veteran actors such as Dimple Kapadia, Sanjay Kapoor, Karishma Kapoor, Tisca Chopra and present generation guys such as Vijay Varma and Sara Ali Khan. 

While the architecture and interiors of Royal Delhi Club transport you to a regal era, you will find yourself wondering who would have committed a heinous crime such as murder in such a pristine place, whose members are all rich and belong to higher sections of the society. Slight comic element has been brought in when Pankaj Tripathi refers to weird tales about his deputy during investigation.

Sara Ali Khan looks good but she really needs to work on her acting and dialogue delivery, although she shines in some scenes. The kleptomaniac nature of her character is not utilized in the film whereas the script for other characters could have been better. The film relies on Vijay Varma and Pankaj Tripathi.

Image courtesy: Google

Friday, May 17, 2024

Mamla Legal Hai

A webseries built around real life challenges faced by lawyers, variety of cases they have to handle, internal politics, and more. Can you imagine witness boxes being moved from one courtroom to another? Or someone being framed for a foul-mouthed pet parrot?

Veteran actor Ravi Kishan, originally from Bhojpuri film industry, plays the central character of V.D. Tyagi, who is also President of Bar Association in Patparganj Court. Donning few streaks of grey, Tyagi is also a smart lawyer who does not hesitate to pull a few strings to his own benefit. The series culminates in V. D. Tyagi losing an election but being offered the role of a judge.

The support cast have also come together to deliver a stellar series on court-room drama, which interwines comedy with many subtle layers. Young actors playing the role of Ananya Shroff (Naila Grewal), Vishwas Pandey (Anant Joshi), Sujata Negi (Nidhi Bisht) have done justice to their characters.   Vijay Rajoria, who plays the role of a senior lawyer Munshiji, adds balance to the series.

Not a drop of vulgarity is there, no cheap jokes, yet this is such a well made comedy series. There are no breathtaking locations, but drab court rooms. Yes, some chambers and homes look swank, but essentially the camera stays in court premises.

Image courtesy: Google

Friday, May 10, 2024

Dream Girl 2

I am someone who strongly believes that men cannot look good if they attempt to disguise as a female, and even if one manages to look good, it wont be possible to walk, dance, sing and talk like women. But all my biases are proved wrong by Ayushmann Khurrana in this movie, which I downloaded just out of curiosity.  The story begins with a lovely dance number with Ayushmann and Ananya Pandey, both of whom look gorgeous. Circumstances take unexpected turns that force the hero to dress up as a bar girl. One lie leads to another, and Ayushmann finds himself entangled in a messy situation.

There’s nothing much of the type of a story here. But great acting by Ayushmann, Annu Kapoor, Paresh Rawal and the support cast pull of comic sequences and provide you some light entertainment, wherein you don’t ask questions but just go along the flow.

Highlight of the movie is how flawlessly the hero plays his female character, Pooja. He not only looks good, but he also moves very gracefully and attractively. His male version will make you fall in love with him too. So much so, that I found myself looking for the first movie made in this series, although the stories are unconnected.

 Image courtesy: Google

Friday, May 03, 2024

Amar Singh Chamkila

Once in a while, most of us would not mind a song with double meanings. But our society forbids us from discussing such things openly. In the very first few minutes of the film, the lead pair (Diljit Dosanjh and Parineeti Chopra) are shot dead.

Set in backdrop of a far flung town in rural Punjab, in late 1970s and early 80’s, the protagonist, Amar Singh Chamkila reaches heights of popularity with his raunchy songs. He was in a completely different profession initially, but he followed his heart to join the troupe of a popular singer named Jatinder Jinda. But fate has other plans for him when Chamkila rises to fame on his own talent, even in the crisis of 1984 after Indira Gandhi’s assassination. He was hiring female singers until he met Amarjot Kaur, who was a major factor behind his success. They get married to preserve their success streak.

Needless to say, some sections of the society oppose the theme of Chamkila’s songs. He chose to switch to devotional songs, which resonated with people very well. However, he had to go back to his original songs on public demand, which later led to his death.

Brilliant acting by all characters have recreated the real life story of Amar Singh Chamkila, who was touted as the Elvis Presley of Punjab. A lot of research has gone in making the film - some photographs and video clips are included wherein you would be able to relate to both real and reel Chamkila and Amarjot.

Image courtesy: Google