Sunday, January 30, 2011

Dil Toh Baccha Hai Ji review: "Funny at times but nothing new!!!"

Madhur Bhandarkar is one name which is always associated with hard hitting serious movies ranging from "Chandni Bar" to "Jail". After having shown his craft in such movies, he trains his eyes on comedy & that has led to the birth of "Dil Toh Baccha Hai Ji".With a cast ensemble boasting of the most successful actor of 2010,Ajay Devgn, the eternal flirt Emraan Hashmi & Omi Vaidya of "3 Idiots" fame; can Madhur hit the bulls eye with this genre as well????


Naren (Ajay) ,a banker who is going through the process of divorce, shifts over to his parents house & is in search of housemates. This eventually leads to the entry of Abhay (Emraan), a physical trainer whose aim in life is to live off the credit cards of gals that he flirts & Milind (Omi), a poet working as a marriage consultant. Naren has a crush on his secretary intern June Pinto (Shazahn Padamsee),17 years his junior. In the meantime, Abhay flirts with Anushka Narang (Tisca Chopra),an ex supermodel & presently wife of a multi-miillionaire, while Milind is head over heels for a career oriented radio jockey Gunjan (Shraddha Das). The question is, will Naren & Milind have their dreams realised??? & will Abhay realise that life isnt all about one night stands and flings ????

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Ajay has already shown his caliber in ample measure in dealing with comedies & here too he has been spot on as the introverted banker in his mid thirties struggling to speak his mind owing to the age gap. Emraan doesnt actually set the screen on fire as he is again bestowed with a role that he has done innumerable times. Omi has delivered a decent effort with his diction still reminding us of "3 Idiots", though with a sprinkle of Marathi as well. Shazahn suited the role really well as the bubbly secretary while Tisca Chopra was spot on as the ex supermodel. Shruti Hasan again reiterated the fact that she has to work hard on her acting skills while Shraddha Das was average.

The script by Madhur Bhandarkar doesnt offer anything new at all & it goes without saying that comedy isnt actually his forte. However its a welcome change which should augur well for the future if he concentrates on situational humour rather than on cheesy dialogues. The music by Pritam doesnt have much to write about except "Abhi Kuch Dino Se" rendered by Mohit Chauhan. The other aspects of the movie doesnt require much of a mention.

Verdict: There is no doubt that the movie will have a bumper opening owing to the credentials of all those involved in the movie. The biggest drawback is that it doesnt offer anything different & just seems to be a rehash of many others that we have seen. In my opinion, its innocently funny at times but its nowhere near our expectations. In short,watch it if you want to vile away some time or else forget it!!!

Regards...Ben

Arjunan Sakshi review : " Decent effort but lacks an engaging feel!!!"

After having not finished 2010 on a positive note, Prithvi Raj is back with his latest venture "Arjunan Sakshi". Prithvi has been knocking on the doors for quite sometime to be the undisputed superstar after Mammooty & Mohanlal,but his solo ventures in recent times "Anwar","The Thriller" etc hasnt quite touched the sky to lay a rightful claim to that title. To aid him in his mission is none other than Ranjith Sankar who had enthralled one & all with his debut venture "Passenger" & Ann Augustine of "Elsamma" fame. So will this trio create magic in the box office????


The script is by Ranjith Sankar & once again he intends to touch upon the topic of current affairs. The film unfolds with an anonymous letter signed Arjunan being sent to Mathrubhumi journalist Anjali Menon (Ann), claiming to have the evidence which will pinpoint the murderers of former Cochin collector, Feroze Moopan (Mukesh). The case had been closed by CBI a few days prior,owing to lack of evidence after a year of investigation.The news of Arjunan is splashed in the papers & as expected a public uproar breaks out requesting the case to be reopened. In the meantime, the conspirators behind Moopan's murder threatens Anjali of dire consequences if details regarding Arjunan's whereabouts arent handed over to them. In the issuing sequences, Roy Mathew (Prithvi Raj), an architect who had recently taken up an assignment in Cochin is believed to be the anonymous Arjunan. Though Roy vehemently denies this, the conspirators are relentlessly after him for the evidence & his life. So is Roy Mathew actually not Arjunan or was he lying to escape the wrath of the murderers????? All this & more are answered, as the movie proceeds.

Ranjith has definitely come up with an interesting theme, but he fails to keep the audience engaged as in "Passenger". You cant help feeling that there is something missing in the movie, though it does convey the insecurities that each of us feel that only the rich & powerful can do anything while we are just pawns.As for other technical aspects of the movie, the music doesnt have much of a bearing here while the visuals by Ajayan is note worthy. 

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Coming to performances, Prithvi has been successful in imbibing the insecurities felt by Roy & how he plans to get over it. As opposed to "Elsamma", Ann doesnt have much scope but she has been sincere in her efforts. The biggest let down of the movie is none other than the 4 villains. Their characters are so poorly etched that you cant help feeling whether these were the terrors who actually planned everything.

Verdict: The credentials of Ranjith & the star power of Prithvi will ensure a great opening, but its unlikely to sustain the hype. The bane of the movie is the weak & predictable climax which will cause it to take a beating at the box office. In short, if you dont go with high expectations its definitely a one time watch as the theme is interesting barring the flaws mentioned earlier!!!!

Regards...Ben

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Dhobi Ghat review : "More of a documentary on diverse people in Mumbai!!!"

Aamir Khan is one name who can always be trusted to come up with something unique in each & every venture of his. The trend has been the same when it comes to his production house as well, with varying genres being tackled with utmost sincerity be it starting from "Lagaan" upto the very recent "Peepli Live". This Friday witnessed the release of "Dhobi Ghat",the latest from the Aamir's production house which also happened to be the directorial debut of his wife,Kiran Rao. Going by the promos, it has the feel of an art movie & to add to that there was news of Aamir requesting the multiplex owners to avoid having an interval break as it will disturb the flow of the movie. Running at just over 95 mins, will the movie create an impact or was this ploy just to prevent people from walking off the theatres??? Hmm...lets see


Mumbai is the land which beckons everyone to try out their luck in making it big in life. As you would expect, one would see people from diverse cultures & from all walks of life embracing Mumbai as their hometown. It is this aspect that Kiran Rao has exploited in her project. The story is said through the lives of four characters with Mumbai itself playing a silent fifth character. Arun (Aamir) is a reclusive painter who has just shifted to a new house & in doing so he stumbles upon a set of video tapes left behind by his previous tenant, Yasmeen Noor (Kriti Malhotra). These video tapes which Yasmeen had taped for her brother to showcase life in Mumbai eventually turns out to be a source of inspiration for Arun. Shia (Monica Dogra) is an NRI banker who is on a sabattical & wishes to discover the various layers of Mumbai life through her camera. She is helped around the city by Munna (Pratheik Babbar), a dhobi by profession from Bihar doubling up as a rat catcher at night who harbours the dream of being an actor some day. So does Arun meet Yasmeen & Munna realise his dreams...all these & more are addressed as the story proceeds.


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Coming to performances, Pratheik Babbar has definitely shown that he is a class apart & shows that he has inherited the acting genes from his mother,the late Smita Patil. Being blessed with unconventional looks, he imbibes the character of Munna complete with his lingo & body language. Another person who had hugely impressed me is Kriti Malhotra, who had the most difficult role in the movie as she had to emote with hardly anyone on screen. The way she changes from the bubbly housewife to the depressive dejected person with the changing times in her life, deserves a round of applause. Monica Dogra as Shia seemed apt for the role while Aamir as Arun though not as awesome as one would like to relate him to has also done a decent job. Bu the winners for me without doubt are Kriti & Pratheik Babbar.

The script is by Kiran Rao & it goes without saying that its not the conventional stuff that we have been witness to. Another aspect which deserves a word of mention is the background score by renowned musician Gustavo Santaolalla, recipient of two back to back Academy awards for "Broke back Mountain"(2005) & "Babel" (2006). The visuals by Tushar Ray has been stunning capturing the vibrance of Mumbai in its full essence however the moving handicam shots was the icing on the top as it effectively imparted a sense of naturality.

Verdict: Aamir's name will make the people flock to the theatres for a day or two, however its not a type of movie which will be palatable to many. Its a venture which is meant mainly for the multiplex & global audience, it will reap awards in film festivals but unlikely to strike a chord with the masses. In my opinion, except for the performances & Yasmeen's sequence the story didnt appeal much to me, though the intellectuals might differ!!!

Regards...Ben

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Siruthai review : "Karthi attempts the larger than life hero!!!"

Last year was undoubtedly the year of the brothers in Kollywood with Surya & Karthi being the disputed box office kings barring the iconic Rajini's "Enthiran". After having burst into the scene with the critically acclaimed blockbuster "Paruthiveeran", he followed it up with a hat tricks of movies last year all of which did good business. So naturally a lot of hype surrounded his latest release, which also brought back the hit pair of Tamannah & Karthi yet again.Was this hype actually justified as the promos were shown to be too loud??? Hmm...well the following lines will underline my point of view.


The movie is the remake of the Ravi Teja starrer Telugu blockbuster "Vikramarkudu". The script is by S.S Rajamouli who was the director of the Telugu version while the Tamil version is helmed by Siva. Bhavuji (Avinash) & his kin are the undisputed rulers of Kurnool with their hands in all that is unlawful & evil. In some other place, Rocket Raja (Karthi) is a small time petty thief who in the company of his accomplice Kaatupoochi (Santhanam) goes around looting people. Its in such a scenario, that they happened to come across a kid,Divya (Baby Rakshana) who addresses Raja as her father. Very soon the plot unfolds & we are introduced to Raja's double, Ratnavel Pandian (Karthi), who was actually the father of Divya & an upright policemen loved the masses & dreaded by the criminals. How did Divya reach Raja & what happened to Pandian???? All these queries are addressed in due course of time.

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Considering the fact that this is the first time that Karthi is attempting the mass hero type of role, he has definitely performed well. The role of Rocket Raja though comical & endearing didnt offer anything new as he has already played roles similar to that, however as Pandian he showcased his prowess in delivering punch dialogues. Tamannah as his love interest, seemed to have take upon a very poorly etched role with nothing more than showing skin in ample measure while Baby Rakshana does manage to pull at the emotional chords. Santhanam does manage to put forth his wares in the limited opportunities that he is provided with. As for the remaining cast,there is nothing much to write home about.

Velraj was entrusted with handling the camera & he has definitely carried it out skillfully. The music by Vidyasagar was average & fails to impress the audience the way one would expect. The script doesnt offer anything new & everything is executed predictably.Though Karthi does manage to grab the eyeballs with his Pandian character, one cant help thinking as to why he would attempt the usual run of the mill stuff!!!

Verdict: Karthi's track record will definitely guarantee a huge initial, however it wont be able to sustain the run for long owing to a very predictable script. Even though I havent seen the original, it fails to impress me except for a few Pandian sequences. In short, its a movie meant mainly for hard core fans & unless you are one its better you give this a miss!!!

Regards...Ben

Kaavalan review: "Illaya Thalapathi is back with a vengeance!!!"

"All adverse and depressing influences can be overcome, not by fighting, but by rising above them" :  Charles C Colton. These words pretty much sums up the present situation that Vijay finds himself in.Things couldnt have gone any worser for Illaya Thalapathi as all his movies since "Pokkiri" had fallen like nine pins & to add to that Tamil Nadu Film Exhibitors Association refused to screen  "Kaavalan" until Vijay had compensated for the losses incurred by his earlier movies. With a virtual isolation even by the media leading to hardly any promos being beamed on channels, Vijay had nothing more than the strength of his movie to get back at his detractors. So can he pull it off or will it be yet another collosial failure???


The movie begins with Muthuramalingam (Rajkiran), a powerful landlord helping a pregnant lady reach the hospital on time & eventually naming the new born as Bhoominathan (Vijay). With time, Bhoominathan turns out to be a helping hand for all those who comes to him for refuge. This prompts his father (Nizhagal Ravi) to sent his son to Muthuramalingam on the pretext of being a bodyguard. After saving Muthuramalingam from a couple of life threatening situations, Bhoominathan becomes his trusted aide & is entrusted with the duty of being the bodyguard for his daughter, Meera (Asin). True to his word, Bhoominathan takes up his new assignment in full earnestness complete with a uniform much to the displeasure of Meera. She eventually devices a plan to ruffle him up by making crank calls on the guise that she is in love with him. However things doesnt pan out the way as she had planned as Bhoominathan falls in love with her without even knowing that the voice in the phone was Meera. Will he be able to ever meet the voice & will he accept her when he realises that it was Meera all along???? The answers to all these forms the pivotal part of the movie.

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Siddique
The movie is the remake of the Malayalam "Bodyguard" starring Dileep & Nayanthara which was an average grosser, directed by Siddique. He has also written the script & except for a few minor changes to suit the image of Vijay, he has pretty much stayed true to his original version. However, it goes without saying that it was a refreshing change to see Vijay in a totally different avatar from the larger than life characters that he has been essaying since the last many years. 









Vijay is well & truly back in his elements with a performance oriented role with ample scope for stunts & dancing skills as well. After a long hiatus dating back to "Dasavatharam", Asin is back in Kollywood & with not much to write about in the recent past, this movie was very crucial to her also. She has performed commendably though there was a definite lack of exuberance that we usually associate with her. Vadivelu creates yet another laugh riot in combo with Vijay while Mithra Kurien as the supporting lead has done a decent job

As for other technical aspects, the music by Vidyasagar was average with "Pattamboochi" by KK being the pick among the lot with the visuals by N.K Ekambaram being laudable. Though the movie at times does reveal the lack of a taut screenplay, there will be no qualms in admitting on the part of the fans that finally Illaya Thalapathy has come up with something that they can rave about!!!!

Verdict: If it had been any other star, the initials would have taken a beaten after the abysmal situation that Vijay was in. However, the brand name Vijay still strikes a chord with the masses & luckily for him the script provided him with something different as well. There is no doubt that the movie will be a dampener for most of us who had seen the original. So watch it if you are a Vijay fan or else forget it, but it goes without saying that he has struck gold this time around!!!

Regards...Ben

Friday, January 21, 2011

Aadukalam review: "Dhanush rules the roost for this Pongal!!!"

Pongal is one of those seasons which are always looked forward to with great expectations by the Tamil film industry. Just as its been the trend always, a host of movies released along with the much awaited Dhanush starrer "Aadukalam". Being directed by Vettrimaran, who has already showcased his caliber with the blockbuster "Pollathavan", naturally a lot is expected of this venture. After having basked in the glory of "Enthiran", Sun Picture is distributing this venture & as expected they haven't left any stone unturned as far as advertising is concerned with all the channels beaming the promos every 5 mins. Hmm..seems like a hands down winner or is it???


The script is by Vettrimaran & as it was in the case of "Pollathavan", he has come up with something which is both heartfelt & raw to say the least. It shows people as being flesh & bones with emotions like anger, hatred, love etc, shown in its true essence. Madurai forms the backdrop of the story where rooster fights are the order of the day. The victory in these fights are seen as status symbols & people indulge in it from all walks of life in full earnestness. Pettaikaran (Jayabalan) is the undisputed champion in the locality, with Karuppu (Dhanush) & Dorai (Kishore) being his assistants. Retnaswami (Nareyn) is his arch rival, who hails from a family famous for conducting competitions & winning them until Pettaikaran emerged in the scene. After having been on the receiving end for years, Retnaswami makes one last effort for the sake of his dying mother in a winner takes all competition. By making use of drug induced roosters, Retnaswami emerges victorious in the initial rounds before Karuppu steps in to save his master's pride with his rooster. Though Pettaikaran sternly orders Karuppu not to participate, he nevertheless takes part & wins the competition much to the displeasure of Pettaikaran who takes it as an insult to his ego.From here starts a tale of envy,anger & hatred, with the plot taking many unexpected twists & turns. 

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Dhanush has delivered a knock out performance & without doubt this will stand out as one of his best till date. He is totally at ease with the role & slips into the character effortlessly. Jayabalan as Pettaikaran is awesome without whom the movie would definitely have lacked the conviction that it wanted to impart. Taapsee as Irene, the Anglo Indian gal who is the love interest of Karuppu has been spot on in her characterisation as the vulnerable,beautiful & elegant female. Kishore & the remaining star cast have all done justice to their roles.

One of the major strengths in this venture is the background by G.V Prakash. It is totally in sync with the situation with songs such as "Yathe Yathe" by G.V Prakash himself & "Otha Sollala" by Velmurugan making us to hum it even hours after it gets over. The cinematography by Velraj deserves a word of praise for his excellent picturisation of the rooster fights. The slick editing by Kishore has contributed a great deal in maintaining the pace & suspense. All in all, the film was brilliantly executed for which the whole cast & crew has to be appreciated.

Verdict: A strong script, powerful performances & to top it off with excellent marketing, things cant get better than this. Without doubt, it would have a bumper opening & should perch itself on the top spot for the next few weeks.In short, though dragging in certain sequences; its definitely worth it. So do watch it for sure !!!

Regards...Ben

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Yamla Pagla Deewana review : "Enjoyable in parts!!!"

After a long hiatus the Deols are back on screen with their masala entertainer "Yamla Pagla Deewana". The Deols have already been seen together once before in "Apne",thanks to Anil Sharma. The promos of YPD guarantees it to be an out & out laugh riot with a sprinkling of emotion & action sequences. "Apne" did manage to bring in the moolah though that was basically a tear jerker, so will YPD repeat the box office magic???


The story by Javinder Bhat doesnt offer anything that we havent been witness to.But then nowadays where is the novelty in stories..however in such a context its imperative that the script contains something to keep the audience hooked onto the screen. The movie starts with the usual old formula of siblings & parents being separated due to certain unavoidable circumstances like kumbh mela, divorce, villain's sense of justice etc etc. Here too, Paramveer Singh (Sunny Deol) is a Canadian NRI, settled with his mom & family; who has been on the look out for his father & bro separated from him owing to parental dispute. Eventually he traces them in Banaras & realises both of them are small time crooks.Though Dharam Singh (Dharmendra) refuses to acknowledge the truth, Paramveer stays on with the hope that he could change their characters & take them back. In the meantime, Gajodhar Singh (Bobby Deol) falls for Sahiba(Kulraj Randhawa), the only sister of 5 Punjabi brothers who are on the lookout for an NRI to marry her off. So will Sunny be able to convince them to change & will Bobby get the Punjabi kudi????

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As I have already mentioned, the script has nothing new to offer & the first half just drags along except for a few comic sequences which too at times fails to create the intended effect. The second half which happens in Punjab definitely lifts the tempo & makes it for an enjoyable watch. Coming to performances, Sunny Deol as the gentle giant was spot on which doesnt mean Dharamendra & Bobby was any lesser. With evident references to Gadar, Dharam Veer, Gupt, Pratigya etc...the Deols create an absolute laugh riot & you cant help noticing the camaraderie they share even on screen. Sucheta Khanna as Poli, who has always been dreaming on getting married to a Canadian NRI was an absolute delight. Anupam Kher as Joginder Singh manages to get us into splits with his gun wielding stunts. Kulraj as Saheba didnt have much to do except look good & sing a few duets with Bobby.

The music by a host of people didnt have much to brag about though the title track "Jat Yamla Pagla Deewana" remastered from the yester year original track manages to grab our attention. However that is mainly because of the picturisation with trade mark dance moves of the protagonists. The editing by Mukesh Thakur could have been much better, as there are sequences in the first half which were a tad too long. Its a well known fact that there is no substitute for a good script, however I feel that a crisper first half could have ensured it a decent run in all centres.

Verdict: There is no qualms in admitting that the Deols have done their part & without doubt it will have a great opening in the single screens. Punjab, Bihar etc has traditionally been the bastions of the Deols &  this time too the trend wont be any different . In short, it should reap profits for the producer though it wont be a huge hit. As for the advice to my friends, I doubt majority of us would like the movie so its better that you give this a miss unless you are a Deol fan!!!

Regards...Ben

Monday, January 10, 2011

No One Killed Jessica review : "Well conceived version of the truth!!!"

Every year has always thrown up some movie which lingers in the mind of the audience for one thing or the other. Luckily for Bollywood, the wait didnt last beyond the first week of this year; as it witnessed the release of the much awaited "No One Killed Jessica". Jessica Lal case is one of the most high profile cases to have ever happened in Independent India & the hype has been palpable ever since news came out this is being immortalised in celluloid. So has the movie able to do justice to the truth or will it be just a masala mish-mash????

The director of this eagerly awaited movie is none other than Rajeev Gupta who had impressed one & all with his debut venture "Aamir".The biggest risk of taking a real life incident is that invariably it might end up being too dramatised & at times deviating from the truth. However, over here Rajeev has done an exceptional job of keeping the truth very much in place & yet maintain an engaging feel to it. The movie begins with Sabrina (Vidya Balan) being called up from sleep to inform that her sister Jessica (Myra) has been shot dead. Jessica was an aspiring model & working in a posh bar, who was shot dead by a politician's son for the trivial reason of denying to serve alcohol after closing hours.The murder happened at a party attended by 300 odd people, both rich & famous. As one would expect, it seemed an open & shut case,but what then unfolds is a dirty tale of how money & power turns the witnesses hostile; & the accused walks off scot-free.What later issues is how NDTV correspondent Meera (Rani Mukherjee) exposes the ugly truth & brings about a nation wide uproar.

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Coming to performances, Rani is back on celluloid after a brief break with a thumping performance. Her portrayal of Meera as a fiercely independent, outspoken & bold reporter is bang on, not to forget the ease with much she dishes out expletives. Vidya coming on the back of memorable performances in "Paa" & "Ishqiya", has essayed the role of Sabrina to perfection, with her relentless fight for justice on the face of adversity & a sense of vulnerability to her character. Myra as Jessica was apt while Rajesh Sharma as the investigating officer deserves a word of praise. 

The real winner of the movie is undoubtedly the script which is backed by some stellar performances. The music by Amit Trivedi is very much in tune with the mood of the movie with the track "Dilli Dilli" reflecting the very soul of the movie.

Verdict: The movie should have an above average opening owing to the hype created by the subject matter. In my opinion, its definitely a well made movie & for those who love hard hitting reality movies do watch it!!!

Regards...Ben

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Traffic review : "Promising start to 2011!!!"

Finally 2011 is here & bringing with it the hopes of a better year for the Malayalam film industry. This week witnessed the release of "Traffic", incidentally the first release of the year. Though directed by Rajesh R Pillai, whose earlier venture, a Chackochan starrer "Hridayathil Sookshikaan",was a debacle, "Traffic" had already generated a great deal of excitement owing to its impressive promos & a huge star cast. So will the movie live upto the expectations & be the first hit of 2011??? Hmm...anywaz read on to know about my opinion.


The script by Bobby-Sanjay duo, credited for the work of "Ente Veedum Appuvinteyum" & "Notebook"...has come up with an interesting theme & kudos to them for keeping the audience engaged. The plot involves the happenings on 16th September & how the lives of the various characters gets crossed at a traffic point. Rihan (Vineeth Srinivasan) is an aspiring TV journalist off to his first big assignment of interviewing Superstar Sidharth (Rehman). In the meantime, Dr.Abel (Chackochan) is on his way to meet his wife to present her with a new car & Sudevan (Srinivasan), a traffic constable is readmitted into work following his suspension for bribery. Rihan at this juncture along with Rajeev (Asif Ali) meets with a freak accident & is rushed to the hospital. What later follows is a tale of emotions & thrills, which keeps us glued to the seats. Revealing anything more, will spoil the fun!!!!!

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With a great script to rely upon, it was a matter of executing it well & without exaggeration, Rajeev Pillai has nailed it. There were portions in the first half that makes us feel that the plot isnt going anywhere, but rest assured the second half has its share of excellent sequences. Coming to performances, everyone has essayed their roles to perfection. Chackochan continues his purple patch & Rehman as the superstar is top notch. Vineeth though in a brief role forms the crux of the movie & Anoop Menon as Commissioner Ajmal is excellent. Sreenivasan delivers whatever the role is & here too the story remains the same. Lena as Rehman's wife deserves a special word of praise & so also Asif Ali, Saikumar etc. Jose Prakash appearing after a long hiatus delivers a barrage of dialogues in a 5min sequence which gets the applause of the audience.

The music by Mejo Joseph is in tune with the mood of the movie & the editing by Mahesh Narayanan is slick. All in all, every aspect of the movie gives the feeling that Malayalam movies are finally coming off age. Without doubt, the real winner is the script as it has tackled an issue quite different & also skilfully weaved together the characters so well rather than making them appear as unwanted appendages.

Verdict: The movie should definitely go on to be the first hit of 2011. Though it doesnt have mega stars, the script will do all the talking & will have the backing of the audience by word of mouth. In short, I would suggest that you guys to definitely watch it!!!!

Regards...Ben

Manmadhan Ambu review: "Fails to live up to expectations!!!"

Kamal Hassan is one collosial name in film industry around the world. It goes without saying that his movies are eagerly awaited as one is sure that Kamal Hassan will always come up with something unique. Since his magnum opus "Dasavatharam", he has been maintaining a low profile until news finally filtered out that he is coming up with his latest venture "Manmadhan Ambu" for Christmas in combination with K.S Ravikumar. This dynamic duo has gifted some of the biggest hits of Tamil & therefore the excitement surrounding their latest offering was palpable among the audience. So will they create box office magic yet again???


Ambu (Trisha) is one of the most sought after actresses of South India & she is presently engaged to millionaire Madanagopal (Madhavan). Being an over possessive lover, Madanagopal fails to digest the fact that she is hanging around with male co-stars at such close quarters. As expected, this invariably brings about misunderstandings & the wedding is called off. Madan however tries to get back together after about 3 years but his suspicious nature forces him to hire a detective,Major R.Mannar (Kamal Hassan) to track the activities of Ambu. Mannar had taken up this assignment for the money so that he could help out his friend suffering from cancer. As expected, Ambu turns out to be a straight forward female & not the immoral character that Madan was expecting. However when Mannar asks for his alimony for his services, Madan refuses to pay him which prompts Mannar to cook up stories of Ambu to keep the interest of Madan going,so that he would pay up. So does Madan marry Ambu or will there be yet another twist to the tale???? for that you got to watch it.
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Coming to performances, the character essayed by Kamal Hassan isnt the type which taps his immense talent. This role could have been done by any other actor for that matter. Madhavan as the suspicious, arrogant millionaire is the one who gets a meaty role & he has given a terrific performance. The same goes for Sangeetha as well,who gets her best role since "Pithamagan" & she is bang on the money. Trisha seems apt for the role & dubbing in her own voice was a first for her. 

Kamal Hassan has virtually handled every aspect of this movie ranging from script,screenplay,dialogues, lyrics & even rendered his voice for a song or two. The movie definitely has its moments but it fails to sustain the interest of the audience. One cant expect every movie to be a "Dasavatharam", but such is the stature of the man that anything normal is deemed not good enough. The script doesnt have much to write about & seems to be too easy and plain. The music was average however the track "Neela Vaanam" taken in reverse mode depicting the flashback was just awesome.

Verdict: The movie will have a killer opening but its unlikely to sustain it. Since a huge amount of money is running on the movie, I dont expect it to be anything more than average. In short, in my opinion its a one time watch but not on the big screen as was the case of previous Kamal movies!!!

Regards...Ben

Friday, January 7, 2011

Tees Maar Khan review : "Absolutely insane!!!"

Christmas bells are ringing & all the folks are savoring yet another holiday season with gusto and mirth. With Christmas falling on a weekend, Farah Khan & Akki is playing Santa Claus this time around by promising to sweep the audience off their seats with their entertaining pot boiler "Tees Maar Khan". The movie had already grabbed headlines when Akshay Kumar was preferred over SRK for the role, which eventually led to the split between SRK & Farah Khan. The question now is whether this would be a money spinner just like Farah's previous ventures & invariably bring back the good times for Akki??? Hmm..well the verdict wont take time!!!


The script by Shirish Kunder is actually a lift off from the Peter Seller starrer classic "After the Fox". The story unfolds with the birth of Tees Maar Khan (Akshay Kumar), a born criminal in actual literal sense. It seems he had imbibed all the characteristics in the womb itself by virtue of his mom being obsessed in watching robbery films. Presently he is being taken up by the Interpol & handed over to the CBI only to escape again. It is at this time, that Tees Maar Khan is entrusted by Johri brothers (conjoined twins, essayed by Raghu Ram & Rajiv Laxman) with the mission of looting antiques worth  millions from a guarded moving train.Realising he might need the help of many people, he hatches a plan of looting the train on the pretext of shooting a heist for his movie "Bharat ka Khazana" starring superstar Aatish Kapoor (Akshaye Khanna). So will Akki & his gang pull off the heist or will the villagers & Aatish realise the truth behind the shooting???

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In the performance department, each & every character was meant to over-act to the hilt. Akki is in his usual avatar & doesnt bring anything different; however there is no doubt that he was definitely the right choice when compared with SRK for the title role.Personally speaking, Katrina Kaif is one of the most over-rated actresses in Bollywood & in a movie which required her to be an absolute buffoon; it was natural that she would pull it off well. Akshaye Khanna as the Oscar obsessed superstar is bang on target & gets us into splits with his histronics whenever he sees Anil Kapoor who is believed to have bagged "Slumdog Millionare" owing to the mistake of Akshay's secretary. 

Farah Khan & Shirish Kunder with the stars of TMK
The movie defies logic & one is adviced to even keep their brains at home to watch this. Farah has always believed in making an out & out masala entertainer, but the biggest flaw with this when compared with her previous ventures is that many of the sequences just fails to evoke any laughs & at times makes us want to pull our hair. The music by Vishal Shekhar & Shirish Kunder didnt have much to write about though "Sheila ka Jawani" has been a chart buster thanks to Katrina's gyrating moves to complement it. If one would notice, Shirish Kunder seems to have touched on every aspect of the movie but it goes without saying the film fails to keep up the spirits of the audience.

Verdict: The movie would have a great opening thanks to the holiday season & the track record of Farah Khan. But its not going to make much waves as the money will invariably dry up in a couple of days. In short, unless you dont mind watching a senseless movie watch it or else forget it!!!

Regards...Ben