- 3250 Points
Anish posted a review for Chhichhore in Movies
'Chhichhore’ has a relevant message on the inherent attitude towards academic success and failure that will connect with many youngsters and parents of today. It tells you that the journey is far more important than the destination and that losing is as critical a life lesson as winning. The film scores high on many accounts and is certainly worth watching.
- Acting, Story
- Direction, Visuals
Anish posted a review for Section 375 in Movies
Anjali (Meera Chopra) goes to director Rohan Khurana’s (Rahul Bhat) home to show him costume options for a shoot. The same evening Khurana is arrested for raping her. What transpired while she was at the director’s home forms the main plot of ‘Section 375’. Based on the evidence, the filmmaker is sentenced to ten years of rigorous imprisonment by the Sessions Court, but the case is soon reopened in the High Court. Going against public sentiment, high-profile lawyer Tarun Saluja (Akshaye Khanna) takes up the case to defend Rohan Khurana. The prosecution lawyer representing Anjali is Hiral Gandhi (Richa Chadha), an earlier associate of Saluja. “We are not in the business of justice, we are in the business of law,” is Saluja’s pet adage to Gandhi. One that she does not buy into at all. ‘Section 375’ presents versions of the same story from two different perspectives. And along the way, it also examines the routine procedures (disturbing in the way in which it is shown to be handled), corruption and investigation lapses with a gritty, realistic feel. As the courtroom drama proceeds, layers keep peeling off – some facts and some conjectures come to the fore, keeping the audience hooked, guessing and joining the dots right till the end. While packing in various standpoints to showcase a balanced view and two sides to the story, the screenplay also highlights how media and social media trials take over a criminal case of this nature. Through its intriguing narrative, director Ajay Bahl tackles the sensitive issue of rape, while throwing light on abuse of power, dynamics of privilege and the absolute need for consent, will and permission when it comes to sex. For those not in the know, it also spells out points of Section 375 of the IPC. The film makes for a gripping watch with a crisp runtime and top-notch performances. Akshaye Khanna is intense, brooding and riveting all at once. He is simply brilliant as he owns every minute that you see him on screen. Richa Chadha follows up with an equally earnest and nuanced act. The supporting cast (Rahul Bhat, Meera Chopra, Krutika Desai) also hold their own. A special mention for Kishore Kadam who is effortless as one of the judges. Add to that, the screenplay is taut with dialogues that stand out. Overall, ‘Section 375’ is an audacious effort. It is a relevant film that tackles a complex issue and one that will engage, inform and open up debates.
- Acting, Story, Visuals
Anish posted a review for Arjun Patiala in Movies
'With you always,' reads the slogan on the police van of the fictional town of Ferozepur in Punjab. The man in charge is Arjun Patiala - a handsome young gabru jawan, who has his priorities set (read women, whiskey and work). Giving him company is his trustworthy but goofier constable Onidda Singh, who has given up on women after multiple heartbreaks. He has now settled for a buffalo as his lady love. If you thought that's bizarre, then wait for more. There is a glamorous yet feisty television reporter Ritu Randhawa (Kriti Sanon), who casually reports on the dreadful trigger-happy goons who infest Ferozepur. An unscrupulous MLA Prapti Makkad (Seema Pahwa), who is often referred to as 'Property Makkar' for her nefarious deals in the real estate. And there is also a gullible goon called Sakool (Mohammed Zeeshan Ayyub) and a host of other quirky characters including IPS Gill (Ronit Roy), who is frankly the only sorted one (for the most part). All of them are part of a fictional story of a formula film narrated by a writer, who often breaks the fourth wall and talks to the audience. This altogether takes away the scope of taking the film seriously. The film's first half breezes through with a few fun moments including a cameo by Sunny Leone. It fails to register her acting skills (or the lack of it), but leads to a forgettable item number that is admittedly mandatory in such a narrative. Diljit Dosanjh delivers a decent performance with a few laugh-out-loud moments. His innocence brings out the vulnerability of his character that is instantly likeable. His leading lady Kriti Sanon (introduced as Heroine No.1) looks flawless, but the same cannot be said about her character. The writing gives her little to work with other than mouthing dialogues without much conviction. But the one who manages to deliver most laughs is Varun Sharma. From his amusing backstory to his forced singlehood, Varun is simply the guy, who can make you laugh at his expense. He also gets some of the best lines that fall quite short in pulling off an out and out comedy. The movie's writing, direction and execution become increasingly childish and pointless in the second half, as it stumbles towards a hotch-potch of a climax. Thankfully, the makers do not resort to cheap, offensive or vulgar humour in a desperate attempt to make you laugh. Film's music is average except for the peppy dance number 'Preeto'. Spoof comedies can be a tricky affair and this one is way too underwhelming to tickle your funny bone for full two hours.
- Acting, Visuals
- Direction, Story
Anish posted a review for The Lion King in Movies
2019’s The Lion King is a ‘live action’ remake of the 1994 original animation flick which went on to become an iconic film for all ages. Those who have watched the original Lion King will vouch for its strong emotional connect, rousing, heartbreaking moments that left a lasting impression and of course the legendary soundtrack and background score. So does the 2019 version of Lion King match up? (In India, the film is releasing in four languages – English and also dubbed in Hindi, Tamil and Telegu.) The big draw of course of the Hindi dubbed version is actor Shah Rukh Khan as Mufasa and Aryan Khan as Simba. The father and son duo had earlier lent their voices to the Hindi dubbed version of The Incredibles in 2004. 2019’s Lion King is a visual extravaganza to savor. Everything you see on screen is etched out with spellbinding detailing and the visual finesse gives way to near perfection. Some scenes especially ones with the fire flies in the night, open starlit skies and expansive views of the forest look stunning. Where the visual appeal falls short is in the expressions and emotions on the faces, especially the eyes of the animals which the animated version had got so right. So while you do feel sad when Mufasa is killed, you are not particularly moved to tears like with the original. And while Scar looks evil, he is not menacing. Also though the film is thirty minutes lengthier it pretty much remains an almost scene by scene copy of the 1994 version, losing its potential to surprise and intrigue further. However, the principal voice cast is a delight – Shah Rukh Khan as Mufasa is captivating from the word go, Aryan Khan shines as the young Simba – capturing every emotion perfectly. The scene where Simba speaks to his father’s reflection in the water, with Mufasa’s voice emanating from the sky stands out as a whole – visually and otherwise. Ashish Vidyarthi as Scar is particularly good, his voice adding the required dimension to the character.Perhaps to contextualize andgive it a local flavor Pumbaa (Sanjay Mishra) and Timon (Shreyas Talpade) speak in tapori hindi here – so there is a generous sprinkling of ‘Bhai’ ‘Jhakaas’ ‘ Apun’ ‘Bindass’. And the gang of hyenas speak in Bhojpuri.While it may connect with the audience and elucidate some laughs, it robs the classic film of some of its original flavor. Shreya Ghosal, Arman Malik and Sunayna Sarkar do a fine job with the Hindi renditions of the soundtrack. But for those who have reveled in the original 'Circle of Life', 'Can you feel the Love tonight' and 'Hakuna Matata' it may not match up totally. The background score by Hans Zimmer is one of the high points of the film. For those who haven’t seen the original, 'The Lion King' (2019) is certainly worth a watch for its gorgeous visuals and technical genius and one’s catching it in Hindi will have Shah Rukh Khan and Aryan Khan adding their spark.
- Acting, Story
- Direction, Visuals
Inspired by maths whiz Anand Kumar, who has seen an astounding success rate for IIT admissions year after year with his batch of ‘Super 30’ kids, the film charts his motivating journey as a fictional account. A life dotted with controversies and hardships, Anand (Hrithik Roshan) literally rises from the rubble to mould his dreams. The story doesn’t touch upon the certain controversies surrounding Anand Kumar which have been reported in the media, focusing on his struggles and glory instead. Son of a postman, a young Anand clinches an admission at the Cambridge University owing to his brilliance in mathematics. But when he has to let go of this opportunity of a lifetime solely because he is unable to afford the fees, life hits him hard and breaks his spirit. But that doesn’t last for too long, since he gets picked by Lallanji (Aditya Srivastava) to become a maths teacher for affluent students at an IIT coaching centre, run by him. But soon, his true calling and passion catches up with him and he realizes that he must use his skills to give lesser privileged, bright students a fair chance at life. Of course, along the way, he faces opposition and obstacles one after another, but never loses sight of what he sets out to do. 'Super 30' drives home the message that education is truly the privilege of those who have the access and economic resources. Unfortunately, for many it remains a distant dream, but if given the same opportunities they have it in them to shine equally bright. There are many moments in the movie that will move you – after starting his Super 30 classes, Anand has to literally scrape through – with often the students barely having anything to eat. But their real hunger is for better education and a better life. 'Super 30' has several heartfelt, inspiring moments that touch a chord. When Anand says at one point, “Aapatti se aavishkar ka janm hota hain”, you do believe him, especially after having seen how driven his batch of students are, leaving behind their impoverished lives and literally daring to dream big. But in the second half, the film’s lengthy run-time begins to weigh on the narrative. And some of the plot points come across as far-fetched and overly dramatic, with the background score dominating some scenes unnecessarily. The cinematography (Anay Goswami) of the film however stands out and some of the dialogues hit home. Hrithik Roshan pulls off a solid performance essaying Anand Kumar, capturing his character’s sincerity and determination very well. While his physicality many not be entirely convincing, his performance more than makes up for it. Nandish Singh is earnest and well-cast as Anand’s brother. Mrunal Thakur is effective in her limited screen time. Pankaj Tripathi as the unscrupulous politician is brilliant and Aditya Srivastava matches the villainy of his character to the hilt. Overall, the performances elevate the film. While the narrative does have its flaws, 'Super 30' is a human drama and the story of a teacher who triumphs over the many challenges that life throws at him, to set an example for the world to see. Just for that it’s worth a watch.
- Acting, Story, Visuals