Fenil and Bollywood

Posts Tagged ‘fear

CREATING MAGIC: Deepika Padukone and Farhan Akhtar in a still from the film
Farhan Akhtar is fida over his hot co-star Deepika Padukone…

SHARIN WADER BUTANI Times News Network (BOMBAY TIMES; December 9, 2009)

It’s difficult to separate the director-producer and actor in Farhan Akhtar, for he’s forever honing his acting skills, thinking of a marketing strategy to promote his films or of different angles to make his stars look larger than life. But today he’s in a different mood. He keeps aside the Don 2 script he’s been working on and gets talking about his hot costar from Kartik Calling Kartik, Deepika Padukone. “There are no words to describe her beauty, she’s extremely beautiful. Many will identify with me when I fall deeply in love with her in the film. In the hot quotient, she ranks among the top three actresses in Bollywood… need I say more,” he asks.

Farhan feels that the two share a wonderful chemistry but he wanted to be doubly sure so he held a focus screening where he invited people from different age groups to come and watch it. “I called my driver’s children and their friends, college students, housewives… and they felt the same,” he says. Once on the show that he was hosting, Deepika had turned up as his guest, standing tall, towering over him. “In reality, we are of the same height. I actually measured her with a measuring tape,” he laughs and adds, “she’s got long legs, her pose and posture make her look tall… unfortunately, I have neither.”

In all his films, Farhan has always given his actors a “hair-raising” experience, thanks to his wife, hairstylist Audhuna. Aamir had the spiked look in Dil Chahta Hai, Hrithik sported a crew cut in Lakshya while Preity Zinta went bob, Arjun Rampal had to grow his hair and Farhan himself was seen in a hairband in Rock On. And for KCK, Deepika had to chop off her hair. “I have a secret pact with Tirupathi Balaji, I cut their hair and send it there… but for Arjun in Rock On, we made hair extensions from the hair that we had cut during Dil Chahta Hai,” he laughs. “My actors shouldn’t look the same in my film the way they did in some other film. The audience should be able to see the character than the celebrity in them,” says Farhan, who plays a lovable loser in KCK. “I can relate to the character because in the past, I have been one myself. Like the crush I had on this girl but never admitted for the fear of being rejected,” says Farhan, who will be playing a fullfledged romantic hero in the film.

By Bollywood Hungama News Network, December 5, 2009 – 00:00 IST

RGV returns with Phoonk 2

Maverick filmmaker Ram Gopal Varma is ready with the sequel of Phoonk, titled Phoonk 2. The film has been directed by Milind Gadagkar, who had written the original version.

Launching the first look of the film, RGV Said, “When Milind Gadagkar the writer of Phoonk came up with the idea of Phoonk 2, the opening sequence itself made me jump up in my seat. The moment I read the entire script I was convinced that he should direct the film as I was amazed at the clarity he had in detailing of the story.”

Comparisons between the two films are inevitable, to which he replies, “In spite of Phoonk’s hit status quite a few people say that it’s not a scary film and there is a reason for that. Scare can be of two kinds, where one is of a kind which scares you due to a completely helpless situation you catch yourself in, and the other which just plain scares your senses. Bhoot falls in the 2nd category whereas Phoonk falls in the 1st one. Phoonk 2 also falls in the 2nd category where its intention is as plain and simple – to just scare the audience’s pants off.”

On choosing the horror genre for his first film, debutante director Milind Gadagkar says, “Ever since I can remember, I have always been a huge fan of the horror genre and the psychosis of fear. Fear is such a strong emotion that it defies all logic. As small children we are scared of entering a dark room; somewhere further in life, we rather try and avoid isolated roads with no street lights.”

“It is not just ghosts that we are scared of but there are times in our lives when a strange and inexplicable incident also scares the hell out of us. Studying this phenomenon of fear has always intrigued me. All said and done, I am really thrilled that inspite of me not having liked Phoonk, Ramu liked Phoonk 2,” Milind concludes.

When asked if he was satisfied with Milind’s treatment of the film, RGV said, “When I saw the 1st cut of what Milind showed me of the film, I told him that it’s not only far better than Phoonk but I think it is the scariest film Bollywood has ever made and it is miles above all my so-called scary films like Bhoot, etc and I mean every word of it from my spine onwards….. Chilling!”

RGV even lets out a bit of the story, “If the entire Phoonk story was about how this evil woman who practices black magic was bent upon torturing and killing a little girl in order to make her father suffer and how the father after desperately trying every measure manages to get a tantrik who kills the evil woman, Phoonk-2 starts off with the spirit of the evil woman coming back from the dead and brutally murdering the tantrik.”

The film has been made in three languages, Hindi, Tamil (Bommai-2) and Telugu (Aavaham). Looks like audiences can await one chilly ride with Phoonk 2.

VALLEY OF HOPE: A still from Zero Bridge, in which Tariq Tapa cast ordinary Kashmiris
Does Zero Bridge, the first Kashmiri film to be made in 39 years, hold out hope for a revival of the arts in the troubled valley?

Bharati Dubey | TNN (THE TIMES OF INDIA; November 15, 2009)

Kashmir, the breathtaking beauty of which has served as a backdrop for innumerable Bollywood romances, never really spawned a thriving film industry of its own: the last Kashmiri film, made in 1969, was Mehanzraat, starring Kashmiri actor Omar Ama. But now, after the long silence, comes Zero Bridge, a film by a Kashmiri NRI from New York, Tariq Tapa.

Twenty-four-year-old Tariq, born to a Kashmiri father and Jewish mother, landed in Srinagar with zero finance and a shooting kit packed into just one suitcase. “I decided to make a film in Kashmir because I found that no outside voice accurately captured the daily life of the average Kashmiri,’’ he says when asked what compelled him to come so far away
to make a film. “I thought a movie introducing the lives of a few Kashmiri citizens and their daily hopes and fears would reveal them more intimately than the usual western documentaries on the Kashmir situation or Bollywood films which only use it as an exotic backdrop. I want my film to make a statement and hope it starts a debate on Kashmir.’’

Tariq was a one-man unit and had to use a news channel’s permission to shoot his film in Srinagar. He mobilised ordinary Kashmiris to be part of Zero Bridge, including collegians who came for the audition. “There is so much talent here,’’ he says. “People want to be part of cinema but there is simply no encouragement from the state. Most of the cinema halls in Kashmir are now army bunkers.’’

Indeed, most aspiring artistes from Kashmir have had to leave their home state to fulfil their creative urges elsewhere, and despair of the arts ever flourishing in their home state. Dr Amit Wanchoo, a Kashmiri Pandit, faced a lot of resistance when he started his rock band, Immersion, in 1999. “From the kind of crowd our shows pull in, it’s obvious that Kashmir is an entertainment-hungry state, but there is certainly no political will to promote art, cinema and music in the state,’’ he says. “They don’t even provide security for shows. One has to perform at one’s own risk.’’

Film-maker Ashok Pandit, who made a Hindi film on Kashmir, points out that given the complete lack of infrastructure, it is impossible for Kashmiri cinema to grow. “There is no cinema, television is banned and no funds are made available to those interested in film-making,’’ he says. Pandit has been trying very hard to push the state government to encourage at least television serials but finds it extremely reluctant.

The climate of fear is also a factor a factor to reckon with. A source from Jammu & Kashmir tourism reveals that of the eight cinema halls in Srinagar, four have been converted into army bunkers. The remaining ones are perpetually guarded by the army but audiences are nervous about walking into them because of the constant attacks by militant groups who are anti-cinema to boot. “Given this fear and the general deprivation, the locals are more concerned about making ends meet rather than expressing their creative instincts,’’ says Pandit.

Bollywood has been filling up the state’s exchequer in the past, but more and more separatist groups are against Hindi film-makers shooting in Kashmir. Last year, Rahul Dholakia commenced his film Lamha, allegedly based on the lives of Muslim separatist leaders, Syed Ali Shah Geelani of the Jamaat-e-Islami, Shahidul Islam, a former insurgent commander, and Dukhtaran-e-Millat leader Asiya Andrabi, the Kashmiri women’s morality brigade so committed to Kashmiri separatism that her sons are already pledged as martyrs to the cause. The shooting in the Valley ran into rough weather when Andrabi took offence to Bipasha Basu playing her character and Geelani, Islam and others became wary.

Says Anil Raina, a Kashmiri journalist who introduced Dholakia to the separatists, “They conveyed to Dholakia that they were against the film. They were afraid that his realistic style of film-making would portray them negatively and it would go against their efforts. I had to intervene and convince them otherwise. At my behest, Dholakia changed many characters in the film. As I played a central part in getting the film on track, I didn’t want anything to go against us. After all, I have to live here with my mother and don’t wish to be slaughtered at the hands of the separatists.’’

WUS

We all, in our childhood, had made a list of careers that we want to pursue when we grow up. But once we enter college, there comes a change in our mindset. We suddenly don’t feel like growing up. We shudder to think of our future when we would only be working with very little time for leisure and friends/family (I am passing through this phrase currently!). Some may claim that they never had such a feeling and that they were ambitious right from the beginning. But the truth is, everyone had gone or will go through this anxiety and even fear at some point of their academic life. Wake Up Sid deals with such similar issues. Although the protagonist is projected as highly lazy, almost everyone will be able to identify with him. This and the wonderful execution by debutant Ayan Mukerji makes Wake Up Sid one of the finest films to come out this year!

The story of the movie: Sidharth Mehra aka Sid (Ranbir Kapoor) is a lazy and non-ambitious youth who has just attempted his final year college exams. His life revolves around his friends, Rishi (Namit Das) and Laxmi (Shikha Talsania) and he loves hanging out with them. Sid’s mother (Supriya Pathak) loves him a lot but he doesn’t reciprocate. His dad (Anupam Kher) manages a big business and wants his son to take some responsibilities on his head. He tries but his efforts are futile. At this point, Sid comes across Aisha (Konkona Sen Sharma), an aspiring writer from Kolkata. Sid and Aisha are as different as chalk and cheese (Ayesha is even older than Sid) but still both of them become good friends. Sid even gives Aisha the much needed help in settling in Mumbai. Soon, Sid’s final year exam results come out and his world turns upside down.

Wake Up Sid is very different and that is evident at several points. The film is completely original and tries to be interesting as well as not to fall into any stereotype. For instance, our Hindi films have got a habit of projecting ‘aamir baap ka bigda beta’ as lazy, irresponsible, arrogant and hot-tempered. But, Sid in Wake Up Sid is shown only as lazy and careless. He is not arrogant; in fact, he’s well-mannered and very sweet and cute!

One gets hooked to the film from the first frame. Note the scene where Sid is in the exam hall, dazed and confused, and his imagination goes wild! Ayan Mukerji’s creativity is exposed fully in that very scene! The wonderful entry of Konkona Sen Sharma and her first interaction with Ranbir takes the film to dizzying heights. The best scene of the film-Konkona’s birthday, will surely bring a smile on everyone’s faces!

The intermission point was explosive. The 2nd half tends to get a little slow but frankly speaking, one doesn’t mind as one enjoys the goings-on thoroughly. You get so involved in Sid’s gradual transformation from a good for nothing guy to a responsible youth that you care a damn about the duration! Also, Ranbir-Konkona’s relationship is very cute and will be loved by everyone! Who says Ranbir-Konkona pairing is a mismatch?

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Most importantly, one learns a lot of lessons from the film. The best teaching from the film-let one decide which path he/she wants to choose. Everyone has different capabilities and likes. Many just hate the 9 to 5 job. In such times, one should be allowed to flourish and grow as he/she likes.

The film gets dragging in the last 15 minutes but again, one doesn’t mind as it’s very well executed. One comes out of the theatre feeling refreshed and satisfied!

The film rests on the rock-solid performance of Ranbir Kapoor and Konkona Sen Sharma. Ranbir was outstanding in my opinion in Bachna Ae Haseeno and in Wake Up Sid, he comes up with another amazing performance. He has put a lot of effort in the film and it is evident at several points in the film. Here’s an actor who deserves to be a superstar as soon as possible! He’s expected to give equally fabulous performances in the forthcoming Ajab Prem Ki Ghazab Kahani and Rajneeti! Watch out!

As expected, Konkona Sen Sharma does a splendid job. She was absolutely natural and completely in character. Also, she looked stunning throughout the film. It’s really great to see such an effortless actress being showered with awards, accolades and acclaim! She completely deserves it, after all! Keep rocking Konkona!

Surpriya Pathak was funny at times but overall impresses a lot. Anupam Kher was consistent. Namit Das and Shikha Talsania were wonderful in their respective parts. Rahul Khanna, like everytime, was charming but why did he played two similar roles in two films? In Love Aaj Kal, Deepika worked under him and she got floored by him. In Wake Up Sid, a similar situation arises between him and Konkona. Actors like Rahul Khanna deserve to get better roles! Kashmera Shah didn’t have much to do. The girl who played Tanya also was wasted. Others were good.

Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy’s music was brilliant and their every song impresses. The title song and ‘Kya Karoon’ were rocking compositions. Amit Trivedi has composed the song ‘Iktara’ which is the best song of the lot. You’ll love the song more after watching the film! Trivedi’s background score was in sync with the light mood of the film.

Anil Mehta’s cinematography was superb. Notice how the scenes turn shaky during confronting scenes! Niranjan Iyengar’s dialogues were casual and something which we hear or speak in our day to day lives.

Amrita Mahal Nakai’s production designs was highly impressive. The sets were just outstanding. Konkona’s workplace was so cool and uber. Man, work would be so much fun if offices had such rocking interiors! Even Konkona’s house seemed so cute, even though it wasn’t huge. Great job by Amrita!

Special mention should be made of Karan Johar, who understood the importance of this film and decided to produce it. Really nice of him to give a chance to promising youngsters and guiding them! Great job!

Ayan Mukerji comes out as a winner! He wrote the story, screenplay and also directed the film and excelled in all three! The film is extremely simple and doesn’t turn out to be full of rona-dhona or melodramatic. Most importantly, Ayan keeps the mood of the film realistic. The characters in the film are believable and straight out of life and the situations they face seem totally real. In short, a brilliant job by Ayan, who is just 26 years old! Simply fantastic!

Some of the best scenes of the film:
1.   Sid in exam hall
2.   The song ‘Kya Karoon’, ‘Aaj Kal Zindagi’ and ‘Iktara’
3.   Sid and Aisha meeting for the 1st time
4.   Sid helping Aisha to decorate her house
5.   Sid in his dad’s office
6.   Sid with Aisha on her birthday (best scene of the film!)
7.   The intermission point
8.   Sid clicking pics of everything under the sun
9.   Sid and her mom looking at his childhood pics
10. The last 20 minutes of the film

On the whole, Wake Up Sid is simply a well-made film in all respects. It is simple, sweet and extremely relatable with great direction, extra ordinary performances and melodious music. A must for all youngsters and for all those who crave for good cinema! Go for it!

My rating-**** out of 5!

This post first appeared on MouthShut.com: http://www.mouthshut.com/review/Wake_Up_Sid-176496-1.html

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