Hindi cinema, no matter how advanced and westernized today, still remains to be highly inspired by the early 70s and 80s. Look at just the number of rehashed stories and songs, remakes in the last year and all of them being received with applause. One such name, which is remembered fondly in the industry as someone who gave some of the most iconic movies of all times. The legendary producer-director, Nasir Hussain has given Indian audiences hit after hit. The man known to be the founder of the Indian masala film did not just set a trend but paved a path for commercial Indian cinema as it stands today. With movies like Yaadon Ki Baaraat, Teesri Manzil, Hum Kisise Kum Nahin or even his magnum opus Qayamat Se Qayamat Tak, this visionary producer-director used the formula of great music + high impact drama + star power to catapult his movies to become major box-office successes and winning him the title of ‘Musical Entertainer’.
If only it wasn’t called ‘inspired by true incidents’ our appetite for irrationality would have been more welcoming than it already is. This sequel to Ek Tha Tiger brings back our hero RAW agent who’s been hiding somewhere in the Alps, only more bloated. If you are still recovering from Tubelight, the opening scene rejects all your doubts about his ‘Tiger’ like qualities, supported by action and blatant dialogues. Not to mention, this intro makes for a good take on Salman’s wildlife fondness.
Two suspects, two murders, two versions. Debutant director Abhay Chopra brings to us a modern-day reinvention of the 1969 thriller starring Rajesh Khanna and Nanda.
Vikram (Siddharth Malhotra), a novelist from the UK finds himself caught between two murders on one dark night, none of which he admits to committing. Neither does Maya (Sonakshi Sinha) wife of the murdered lawyer. What lies next is discovering of the ‘coincidence’ that brings all of this together.
The rags to riches story is always an easy win amongst our masses, for a simple reason that it gives hope. It is also an age-old formula for all the popular talent shows, that have become our dinnertime favourites. Yes, we appreciate the art, but what really keeps us glued is the celebration of human victory over life’s challenges. Secret Superstar banks on this very premise and brings forth one of these ‘winning’ stories in an attempt to strike the right emotional chords.
An opening scene introduces us to this curly haired, blinking eyed guy biting on an apple while he is sunk in some manual. Nutan Kumar cleverly changed his name to Newton as a child, to escape mockery and of course inspired by the legend himself.
Newton has been selected as presiding officer for an upcoming election in an area with mere 78 voters. It is a day in the lives of people involved in the painstaking operation of conducting elections in the Naxalite affected jungles of Chhattisgarh. What follows next is the unlayered portrayal of the perplexed Indian democratic system. Without being cynical, Amit V Masurkar and Mayank Tewari’s screenplay excel at the immersive storytelling of this ‘just another’day, in the electoral process of India with an unflinching dark humour.
A female lead trying to carry the whole story on her shoulders, not the first time. A character that is not bound by the realms of good or bad, not the first time again. Despite references to similar works, Simran is experimentally different. The story of a rebellious young lady who lives her life on her own terms. The badass gets crazy and the crazy gets absurd.
With Ayushman Khurana carrying his very best Delhi accent and Bhumi Pednekar continuing the act of a rebellious new-age girl next door, their chemistry being already applauded in Dum Lageka Haisha and the subject in which Ayushman already excels, Shubh Mangal Savadhan runs the risk of resemblance at multiple levels. Not to mention the recent releases of the both the protagonists that too in a similar middle-class family setup. But just a few minutes into the running time and you know you are up for a riot of fresh meaningful comedy.
Seems like a year of double role movies. Like every other story of this genre, there are two characters diametrically opposite of each other. One, a walking talking matrimonial ad and the other a mysteriously cool bad guy. The only difference between the two looks is credited to the redundant brand integration of hair gel. Fortunately, there is more to the usual drill to keep you hooked.
With the paucity of any good attempts in this genre, there is always a fan base waiting to crowd the theatres at such opportunities. And when you have a sequel/prequel to the much-acclaimed Conjuring, the expectations are a given. This addition to the possessed doll series leaves us with one question.
Why make a prequel when you have nothing new to say? Continue reading