Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Thirupathi (2006) - Tamil Movie Review

Ranking: 2.5/5

Cast: Ajith, Sada
Director: Perarasu
Music: Bharathwaj

Some movies do not need a review, they should just be avoided. But since I love writing reviews here goes...Ok this is funny, I mean the movie...It is so stupid that it gets hilarious...Why do directors want to portray that Chennai might become an ideal city through stupid movies? I loved the concept in Mudhalvan...It is a fantasy film and it was executed well...But Thirupathi? Jeez...Stupid.

We have exploited all forms of social reforms forever in Tamil cinemas...I do not know when it started but the first movie I remember is Naan Sigappu Manidhan...Then Shankar came in and exploited the same topic in four different movies (Gentleman, Indian, Mudhalvan, and Anniyan). Then Vijaykanth also followed the footsteps and so did Ajith himself. Vikram's Saami was a standout at all this attempt and it was a good movie...But isn't it high time we stop? I mean we know that such reforms are never going to happen, no one is going to raise hell in T.Nadu for injustices being met to people everyday, people just do not care...and people have realized that all this is a fantasy and it is quite boring indeed.

Anyway...The story is a combination of Annamalai and Padikathavan in the first half and Ramana in the last part. The minute they introduce Suri (Riaz Khan), the rich son of a minister in the first half as Thirupathi's (Ajith) best friend we know where the story is heading. We are waiting for Suri to commit the unpardonable sin that will bring the lion out of Thirupathi...Of course Thirupathi has a brother who lies to his parents for money to have fun with his friends. Thirupathi obviously has a sister who is pregnant and parents who are not awfully rich.

So I guess now you can see where the story is heading...Yes, exactly, the most predictable and boring story...Thirupathi's pregnant sister dies during childbirth as the doctor is asking for money to perform surgery to deliver the child. In the meantime Ajith is helping out his friend Suri on behalf of the same doctor who had killed his sister. This is the split between friends where he realizes that Suri was using him only to satisfy his political needs and the bad doctor was actually Suri's brother.

Now Thirupathi starts taking revenge on Suri, his brother (the bad doctor) and Suri's father...The end result? The new rule passed by the State Government that Pregnancy care shall be free of cost for all women in T.Nadu...Even if you go to Apollo or to GH...Does not matter...Doctors have to do the operation of delivery for free...This masala was aimed to reach the women sentiment...Cheap trick.

On the whole...Pathetic story, miserable songs, sorry screenplay, a sick looking Ajith, Sada is okay...But who is she in the movie? A role that did not make any impact in the movie, bad direction, boring comedy...and the list goes on...

Now, Ajith can complain that when he was fat we all said he was fat and now that he is thin we are complaining that he is so ugly-thin...I am sorry Ajith...You have lost your charm, thin or fat you do not look good anymore, the charisma is not there anymore.

So once again...Avoid it at all cost.

Da Vinci Code (2006) - English Movie Review

Ranking: 4/5

Cast: Tom Hanks, Audrey Tautou, Ian McKellen, Paul Bettany
Director: Ron Howard
Story: Based on the novel Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown

The book is amazing. It is big, at first it might intimidate you but even the "I rarely read book" kinda people also will be caught up with this story. The book based on many conspiracy theories that have existed since the crucifixtion of Christ is another conspiracy theory in itself...

Now explaining the story would be trying to condense a 500 plus page book into one single page...Is that possible? Well I do not know but I guess the above paragraph gives a brief synopsis of what the book is about and I will stop with that...But I do want to write a few things about the movie itself.

It is always difficult to make a movie based on book so popular. It will surely raise the expectation of many viewers. This is not fair to the director as it results in many bad reviews. I strongly believe that the movie has justified the book the best it can. The story is complicated many small plots, many historical details but all of the 500+ pages have to be condensed into a two-and half-hour movie...It was well done. Too much expectation always results in disappointments as this movie cannot be embellished with graphics like LOTR or Harry Potter.

I also agree that reading the book before watching the movie might help a lot because it surely helps you understand many nuances that are left unexplained better...the small modifications done to the original story are okay and it just confuses the viewers less...

You should surely watch this movie before making a judgement. It is worth the money if you understand it or it will atleast motivate you to read the book...

Monday, May 22, 2006

Gangster (2006) - Hindi Movie Review

Ranking: 3.5/5

Cast: Emraan Hashmi, Shiney Ahuja, Kangna
Director: Anuraag Basu
Music: Pritam Chakravarthy

This movie is good...not great but good. The acting by all the main protagonists is very good. If I had been the director the one thing I would have changed about the movie is to dub the voice for Ms. Kangna as she has a very bad lisp. Now, do not think I am being mean...In a movie the voice is very essential to convey the emotions but if the voice has a lisp then it does not do a very good job. Many times when Kangna is talking portraying various emotions of anger, disappointment, etc...We laughed. It was really sad but we laughed because her words came out really funny...So just to be fair to her and the director he should have dubbed the voice for her...

The story is about the girlfriend (Simran played by Kangna)of a gangster (Daya played by Shiney) who is a drunkard trying to dissolve her sorrows through drinks. Aakash (Emraan) is a singer at a local bar who falls in love with Simran. Aakash and Kangna start having an affair that Daya discovers. He almost kills Aakash but Simran prevents him from doing so.

Simran is confused if she should stay with Daya or run away with Aakash who promises her a wonderful world if she could turn in Daya to the authorities and marry him. Kangna's confusions is well expressed in the movie. The rest of the movie is about Kangna's decision, betrayal, flash back and the end...

This is a very well directed movie. The acting as mentioned is good, the screenplay is perfect, and the editing is amazing. I enjoyed the movie very much in spite of its dark shades. Violence is present but in no form is glorified. I would strongly suggest watching this movie...

Monday, May 15, 2006

Thiruttu Payale (2006) - Tamil Movie Review

Ranking: 4/5

Cast: Jeevan, Malavika, Sonia Agarwal, Abbas, Manoj K. Jayan
Director: Susi Ganesan
Music: Baradwaj

Manickam's (Jeevan) parents are afraid of him because of his temper tantrums and unruly behavior. Afraid to handle him they send him from a small village in Madurai to his uncle's house in Chennai. Manickam's uncle, a police inspector dotes on him from his childhood and welcomes him with open arms.

Manickam, spends a lot of time on the terrace that overlooks a golf course and with the help of one of his neighbors gets hold of a pair of binoculars. He uses it to spy on people when his eye catches Roopini (Malavika) and Santosh (Abbas) having sex after dark. He observes them many times over few weeks and also learns that they are having an extra-marital affair. And with a little research learns that both Roopini and Santosh are rich. So he decides to video tape them having sex and bilk them to live rich the rest of his life.

Manickam invites his friends from the village over and they start partying and spending Roopini's money like water and also force her to send them on a vacation to Australia. Roopini at every stage of the bilking process tries to outsmart Manickam. The battle of wits is on...Until Manickam falls in love with Rosy (Sonia), a girl planted by Roopini to lure Manickam.

Manickam turns into a good leaf because of Rosy's intervention and everything between Roopini and Manickam are things of past. But Rosy's greedy mother poses a threat to their relationship and Manickam is forced to revert to his old habits once more.

In the meantime Roopini's husband Selvaraj (Manoj) hires a private detective to make sure that his wife is not in trouble...The detective's findings brings in an amazing ending to the movie. The way the director leaves many of the scenes without completion and goes back to complete them giving us a clearer picture is very interesting. Kudos to the director for maintaining the interest and pace of the movie from start to finish.

Jeevan is a good actor, he has done very few movies but a couple of memorable ones. He is very effective on communicating the negativeness in his role. Maybe he should only play negative roles...Sonia Agarwal should learn to emote. She has a deadpan face and she is not attractive either. Malavika is very good in her characterization of Roopini and Abbas still looks gay but was good for his role in the movie. Manoj K. Jayan as the husband of Malavika plays his role to perfection. In other words the casting of the movie (but for Sonia) and the direction is just splendid...

If you have time and are thinking about watching MI3 or Azhagai Irukirai...STOP...Go and see this entertaining thriller...It is GOOD...Worth the time and money.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Mission Impossible - 3 (2006) English Movie Review with Spoilers

Ranking: 2/5

Cast: Tom Cruise, Billy Crudup, Lawrence Fishburne, Philip Seymour Hoffman
Director: J.J. Abrams

It is the same old story...Spy stuck in a web cast by the villain and the spy's own boss. Very obvious, the story is simple and stupid...Like a friend of mine would say..."Stupid and irritating."

Ethan Hunt (TC) a spy who is now settled to teaching as he is getting married and wants to miss out on action is called on to work on one last job...To bring back another fellow spy from the hands of a terrorist (Philip) who has her captive in Germany. TC leaves his engagement party to pursue work...They get the captive spy but she dies on her way to America... TC is now upset but he is in the midst of something he cannot get out of...

Ethan and John M (Billy) are being questioned by John B (Lawrence) for negligence and Ethan wants to protect his boss and set things right. So he takes on a project without anyone's knowledge but just his team mates (3 of them) and goes over to Italy where the bad guy is supposed to be arriving at. They succefully capture the bad guy and bring him to America...On their way to meet John M and John B Ethan hears a clip sent by the dead spy that John B works hand in hand with the bad guy.

Just as he realizes that a big accident happens...No one know how or what exactly happened...But at the end of it there are few cars and a big truck and a hole on the bridge with Ethan running to get the bad guy...Who obviously escapes to take revenge on Ethan...

Ethan's wife is captured. Now Ethan is being asked to work on a project that is supposedly very daring for the return of his wife while his fellow spies capture him and take him back to the head quarters. His boss John M tells him to leave for China where he can complete the mission and come back with his wife...Ethan escapes and is in China where his team mates meet him to help him with the project...

During the course Ethan realizes that the actual villain is not John B but John M...How crappy if he had asked me this I would have told him at the very beginning...Like a Tamil movie only worse...Anyhoo, Ethan returns, John M is dead and John B recommends Ethan to work for CIA...E'S (End of Story)...

Now...Ethan goes to china to bring back something called the Rabbit's foot that is in a canister with the hazardous sign on it...Do we get to know what the hell is in that canister at the end of the movie?? NO...Seriously...After watching a crappy movie for two hours you do not get to know what Ethan was behind all this time after all...Maybe the director himself had no idea...

Few of the stunts are amazing, some of them stupid, and some funny...It is like the Azhagai Irukirai movie where Bharath's mom will jump from the terrace of a three story building holding helium balloons in her hands...Some of the stunts are confusing, in that you do not understand what really is happening...The movie is corny at times and cheesy at others...

If I were you and had extra time, I would still not watch this movie...Till this minute I am regretting spending my hard earned money on this imperfect piece of crap...So verdict...DO NOT WATCH.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Taxi 9211 (2006) - Hindi Movie Review

Ranking: 4/5

Cast: John Abraham, Nana Patekar, Sonali Kulkarni,
Director: Milan Lutharia
Music: Vishal & Shekar

Raghav Shashtri (Nana) a Mumbai taxi driver with love for no one but his wife and kid drives around the city picking petty fights with everyone he meets. To the world he is a cabbie but to his wife he is an insurance agent. He needs money to fix his family with everything they need...

Jai Mittal (John Abraham), son of a late industrialist who has been stripped off property in the last will written by his father before his death. He is contesting in the court and needs to be there on time to produce the documents that prove him to be the lawful inheritor of the property. Jai meets with a small accident the previous night in his car and is now forced to take a cab to the court...

Fate brings Raghav and Jai together. It is hate-at-first-sight. Nothing works in their favor. Their big ego's clash bringing in bouts of laughter and emotions into the film. The rest of the movie takes us through a series of events created by Jai and Raghav to satisfy their anger, ego, and hatred for each other. Do they realize who their real friends are? What they both are angry about? Do they make friends? Watch the movie! You will not regret it!

Nana, perfectly suited his role as Raghav Shashtri, the easy-to-anger cab driver and John was great as Jai Mittal. Raghav's emotions, anger, feelings, and annoyance at the world are very well portrayed by Nana. His love for his wife and kid is also humorously portrayed and Nana does a great job being Raghav.

John, handsome face, perfect physique, and together with all this he is a good actor too...Unlike many of his contemporaries who failed to create a ripple, John is here to stay with his class, style and charisma. He has the kind of a face that can either be handsome or like that of a twisted man... Great going John.

I should applaud the director for a great movie...In one week I saw three movies, Darna, Azhagai, Taxi, and MI3 and this is the only movie that is getting a complete positive review from me...The movie is clean but for a few dialogues and is perfect for family viewing if these dialogues could be censored.

The only negative part in the story is that one cannot believe that all the things shown in the movie can happen in twenty-four hours, that too in a city as big as Mumbai...Maybe the director did it to keep the pace of the movie...Which for its own good does not slow down till the end.

If you did not agree with the movie let me know why...

Monday, May 08, 2006

Azhaga Irukirai Bhayama Irukiradhu (2006) - Tamil Movie Review

Ranking: 2.5/5.0

Cast: Bharath, Arun, Mallika Kapoor, Deepu, M S Bhasker, Renuka, Supergood Lakshmanan
Director: Vijay Milton
Music: Yuva Shankar Raja

Manu (Bharath) comes to Chennai to win over his love and meets Jo during one of his attempts at separating Prem (Arun Kumar) and Nandini (Deepu). Manu explains to Jo that he has been in love with Nandini, a TV News Anchor for over three years since the time she lived in his village
and would love to get back with her. While Jo explains that she has been in love with Prem an aspiring cricket player waiting to make it to the Indian team for more than five years and would love to get married to him. So together they start Operation Tuskon and start plotting to separate the lovers.

Finally when the lovers are separated the truth behind Manu's motives are explained to us which is the Twist in the tale...This is a good part in the movie... After this the movie gets boring...and for the director to really walk around telling everyone that "his story is a different one," he really ended it differently...But is the end justified? Who knows...When the whole story is corny why shouldn't the ending be any different?

Mallika Kapoor, is very annoying, I do not know if it is because of the dubbing artist or if it is just her...Very annoying, acts like a three year old and has the biggest squint...Worse than both Bipasha and Ramba...

Bharath, we have come to accept you as an actor, you are decent, much better than many of our contemporaries but that does not mean that you should cry at every given opportunity...It gets annoying and kind of a drag.

Arun Kumar, you are just too old now for us to watch you as the guy bagging the girl. Sorry you did not get better opportunities five years ago...Shedding those extra pounds might help.

The music is okay and the direction could have been better. All these directors who make crappy movies should have a neutral sensible person who can give productive advises to make the film better. This might help reduce crappy movies and directions...

Friday, May 05, 2006

Darna Zaroori Hai (2006) - Hindi Movie Review

Ranking: 2.5/5

Cast: Amitabh Bachchan, Ritesh Deshmukh, Anil Kapoor, Mallika Sherawat, Randeep Hooda, Zakir Hussain, Manoj Pahwa, Sunil Shetty, Sonali Kulkarni, Rajpal Yadav, Arjun Rampal, Bipasha Basu, Makrand Deshpande, Rasika Joshi, Isha Koppikar, Shweta Prasad
Directors: Jijy Philips, Prawaal Raman, RGV, J.D. Chakravarthy
Music: Taabhish Romani & Nitin Raikwar

Ok, Seven short supposedly scary stories, directed by four different directors make this movie...Do you really get scared? Sorry...You will be disappointed in the fact that there is nothing remotely scary about this movie...And this is coming from someone who gets scared real easy. But you will not be disappointed if you did not expect much from Indian horror flicks anyway...

I am not going to sit here and write a summary of all the not-so-interesting stories...Just going to tell you this:
1) Acting is okay.
2) Music does give you a jolt more than a few times.
3) Story extremely predictable...We could guess the story of the movie scene by scene as we watched the movie.
4) There are only four real ghost stories the rest are supposed to be thrilling stories...But the stories told to me by my friends when I was a kid seemed more scary than these.
5) Never trust Rediff.com reviews. They are all paid for...So they lie.
6) The scary scenes are hilarious.
7) No Gory scenes...Which is good for me...I hate to see blood or other things oozing...

This movie is okay if you have not seen master pieces like Omen, Evil Dead, Exorcist, etc...Otherwise you begin to wonder Why RGV does not give up his attempts at making Ghost Stories...Maybe he is trying hard so that out of the 15 movies he tortures us with at least one might become a hit...Nice try...Sorry but This is not the one...So keep trying...And when will I learn not to watch them??!!!

Ratings by outbrain