Fenil and Bollywood

Posts Tagged ‘manoj pahwa

By Taran Adarsh, January 1, 2010 – 12:31 IST

Surprise, surprise, surprise! Sometimes, the expectations from a movie are zilch, but what unfolds on screen is beyond expectations. It surprises you, to put it simply.

On face-value, BOLO RAAM looks like it’s straight out of 1970s cinema. A movie with predictability written all over it. A movie that carries zero hype and matches it with zero content. But BOLO RAAM isn’t archaic, isn’t the usual masala, isn’t zero content.

A remake of the Tamil film RAAM [2005; starring Jeeva, Saranya, Rehman, Murali], BOLO RAAM has an interesting plot with an engaging screenplay that compels you to look at the screen for most parts of the movie. But, of course, there’re hiccups. A few non-actors and a done to death climax could’ve been avoided.

BY BOLLYWOOD HUNGAMA.COM

Raam [Rishi Bhutani] is charged with the murder of his mother Archana [Padmini Kolhapure]. Raam falls into a state of shock, brief psychotic disorder, after his mother’s death and becomes silent, refusing to talk or react in any manner.

The investigating officer, Indrajeet Singh Rathi [Om Puri] is puzzled and unable to make Raam speak. He consults a psychiatrist, Dr. Negi [Naseeruddin Shah], to determine the cause of Raam’s state of mind and the reason for his silence.

Rathi interrogates various personalities for the case, questioning Raam. Every possible motive that Raam might have for murdering his mother is explored. Furthermore, Raam’s neighbours, Sub-Inspector Sajid Khan’s [Govind Namdev] daughter Juhi [Disha Pandey] and son Sameer [Krishan Khatra], are summoned by Rathi for interrogation. Will his silence solve the puzzle?

Without wasting any time, BOLO RAAM takes off from its opening titles itself. The story goes back and forth, several new characters are introduced, but the narrative stays faithful to the main plot. The best is reserved for the second half. Layer after layer is peeled with expertise. The viewer is keen to know the identity of the killer and that’s when the film fumbles and tumbles.

The culprit’s track is sloppy and a major put off. In fact, the circumstances that lead to the murder are quite amateurish and look far from convincing. Surely, the writer could’ve thought of a better culmination. Also, the one-sided love affair is functional.

Debutante director Rakesh Chaturvedi ‘Om’ makes a confident debut, although he should’ve cast some better actors for key roles. There’s not much scope for music [Sachin Gupta] in the film and hence, just one song merits mention – ‘Maa Tere Jaisa’. The background score [Sanjay Chowdhury] deserves special mention.

Newcomer Rishi Bhutani does a commendable job. He oozes confidence, despite sharing the same frame with accomplished actors. Om Puri gets into the skin of his character and is impressive, while Padmini Kolhapure is a pleasure to watch after a long gap. She is beautifully restrained. Naseeruddin Shah has a brief role and the veteran does it well. Govind Namdev is very good.

Rajpal Yadav is wasted. Both Disha Pandey and Krishan Khatra are non-actors. Manoj Pahwa does his usual act.

On the whole, BOLO RAAM has decent merits [hence those 2 stars], but the problem is its wrong release timing. It won’t stand a chance in front of a hurricane called 3 IDIOTS.

By Taran Adarsh, October 30, 2009 – 08:26 IST

In real life, if you feel your colleague is far more superior to you in intelligence, talent, charisma, efficiency, chances are you might feel the heat. Jealousy, generally, stems from there. In the process, the best of relations get strained. LONDON DREAMS, directed by Vipul Shah, talks of two musicians, thick pals actually, and how jealousy drives a wedge in their friendship.

Let’s clear a few myths before discussing the positive and negative factors of this film. LONDON DREAMS is not BAIJU BAWRA. LONDON DREAMS is not ROCK ON!!, ABHIMAAN, YAARANA or SAAJAN either [a section of the industry wants us to believe that]. The truth is, LONDON DREAMS borrows from Milos Forman’s brilliant film AMADEUS [1984], which was based on Salieri and Mozart’s life. In fact, Suneel Darshan too had made a film based on AMADEUS called SHAKALAKA BOOM BOOM [2007; Bobby Deol, Upen Patel].

BY BOLLYWWOD HUNGAMA.COM

LONDON DREAMS is a complete departure from Vipul Shah’s earlier outings, AANKHEN, WAQT, NAMASTEY LONDON and SINGH IS KINNG [produced by Vipul, directed by Anees Bazmee]. This film is about relationships and tends to get very real and intense, in the post-interval portions specifically. The scale of LONDON DREAMS is gigantic and the execution of concerts [it's about a band] sweeps you off your feet.

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In terms of execution, it wouldn’t be erroneous to state that LONDON DREAMS is amongst Vipul Shah’s most accomplished works to date. Also, it boasts of incredible performances by Salman Khan and Ajay Devgn. But there are hiccups too and it’s these deficiencies that bog the film down!

They were childhood friends. But they had little in common except their family’s connection with music. While Arjun’s [Ajay Devgn] life was consumed by a passionate drive to get on stage and realize his grandfather’s unfulfilled dream, Mannu [Salman Khan] was content with remaining a child at heart with no higher ambition than enjoying the good things in life.

As Arjun forges a band with Zoheb [Rannvijay Singh], Wasim [Aditya Roy Kapur] and Priya [Asin], a music enthusiast from a conservative South Indian family, far away in Punjab, music becomes a survival tool for Mannu, who takes to playing in wedding bands in his village.

Arjun gets Mannu to London and makes him a part of the band, but soon realizes he’s created the biggest threat and obstacle to his own ambitions.

Mannu, with his inherent musical gift, becomes an instant darling of the crowds. Arjun’s unbearable pangs of jealousy and insecurity only worsen when Mannu also unwittingly woos and wins his secret love, Priya. As he battles his inner demons, Arjun slowly devises a sinister plan to destroy his best friend.

It takes time to get into Ajay’s world [its Ajay who's narrating the story here]. The film moves back and forth and it’s only when the two buddies, now adults, meet that you realize where the story is headed. The first hour depicts the two extreme characters – Ajay, who’s an introvert and who cannot think of anything but his goal and Salman, a happy-go-lucky guy, laidback and fun-loving, least focused.

The narrative has some interesting moments in the first hour, but the actual story unravels only towards the second half. The first half, frankly, only sets things up for the explosive drama that is to follow. The wheels start moving when Ajay plays a vicious game and hatches a conspiracy to ruin his buddy’s career.

It’s the second hour that does the trick. You can’t help but carry several sequences in your heart, even after you’ve made an exit from the auditorium…

  • Note the scene when Salman makes four different tunes from the original tune created by Ajay.
  • Note the scene when Ajay meets an inebriated Salman and professes revenge, while Salman is completely clueless about Ajay’s sinister plans.
  • Note the scene when the band arrives in London after a 3-city concert and they’re received by aggressive mediapersons.

But there’re roadblocks too. Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy’s music is a downer. LONDON DREAMS is about a rock band, about music, about concerts and the music had to be the soul of the film. Unfortunately, it’s not! The songs have been filmed in the most energetic fashion, but how one wishes the music was one of the strengths of the film.

Also, the film could’ve concluded when the two friends re-unite at the station. Adding one more song thereafter only dilutes the impact of the emotionally correct sequence that has just been witnessed. Besides, the song in question hasn’t been promoted either, so it only comes across as an aberration.

Prior to that, Ajay’s outburst at the end of the concert is far from convincing. The film has a real feel, real characters and real situations, but the outburst looks unreal and is one of the drawbacks, from the writing point of view. It’s just not convincing!

Besides, Ajay’s childhood character is shown fleeing from the airport and making it big in a foreign land [London], without any support whatsoever. It’s unpalatable!

Vipul Shah has handled this intricate subject well, but the writing could’ve been tighter. Sejal Shah’s cinematography is super. Brownie points for capturing the concerts brilliantly. Salim-Sulaiman’s background score matches international standards.

Both Salman and Ajay vie for top honours. Salman has a role that the junta would take to instantly and the actor too endears himself to the viewers. He’s stupendous. When it comes to displaying intensity on screen, very few can live up to the standards set by Ajay. To state that he packs in a power-packed performance would be an understatement. They, in fact, compliment each other wonderfully well.

Asin is admirable and pairs off very well with Salman. She is sure to have a new name after this film – Chennai Express [that's how Salman addresses her affectionately, all through the film]. Om Puri has a brief role. Aditya Roy Kapur is very good and registers an impact. Rannvijay Singh doesn’t get much to do, except throw nasty looks at Salman. Manoj Pahwa provides some funny moments. Brinda Parekh is okay.

On the whole, LONDON DREAMS has superb performances from its principal cast and several emotionally-charged sequences as its two trump cards. But its biggest drawback is its climax and also the music, which is the weakest link of the movie. At the box-office, the film should appeal more to the multiplex audience than the masses. Business at big centres, especially at metros, should be better, but mini-metros and towns will be a contrast.

By Taran Adarsh, October 2, 2009 – 11:13 IST

David Dhawan has always made wacky and bizarre films and his new baby DO KNOT DISTURB doesn’t push the envelope either. His critics may term his cinema outlandish and outrageous, but the fact is that his films cater to the aam junta. His mantra is simple: Haso aur hasao.

Now let’s analyse DO KNOT DISTURB, inspired by the French film LA DOUBLURE aka THE VALET [2006]. David has tackled extra-marital affairs in his earlier films like SAAJAN CHALE SASURAL, GHARWALI BAHARWALI and BIWI NO. 1. DO KNOT DISTURB also talks of a married man having a torrid affair with a supermodel, but it’s not remotely similar to his past endeavours.

BY BOLLYWOOD HUNGAMA.COM

Actually, DO KNOT DISTURB rests on a thin plot and David relies on gags and jokes to keep you hooked for those 2 + hours. Even though you realise that there’s not much meat in the story, even though the situations are silly, you remain glued to the proceedings because it keeps you in splits thanks to the funny jokes and the weird characters.

So what’s the verdict? DO KNOT DISTURB is sure to keep you smiling from start to end. A few portions may even prompt you to laugh aloud or break into a guffaw. If non-stop mindless entertainment is on your mind, this recipe is just for you. Do Knot miss this one!

A filthy rich businessman [Govinda], married to a beautiful and sophisticated woman [Sushmita Sen], tries to hide his extra-marital affair with a supermodel [Lara Dutta]. To save his skin, he bribes a waiter [Ritesh Deshmukh] into pretending to be the supermodel’s boyfriend. What follows is a series of mistaken identities and misunderstandings.

David Dhawan opens his cards at the very outset. The emphasis is on comic situations, while the story goes out of the window after a point. You don’t mind it purely because the motive, like always, is to keep you in splits and DO KNOT DISTURB succeeds to a large extent.

At the same time, writer Yunus Sajawal takes a long route to reach the culmination. The Ranvir Shorey dual role sequence, for instance, seems unwarranted. Also, Sohail Khan’s portions looks forced in the narrative. Even otherwise, the post-interval portions are very lengthy, although the comic scenes compensate for the deficiencies in the writing.

David Dhawan is the Big Boss of laughathons and DO KNOT DISTURB proves his supremacy yet again. You may argue that the goings-on are plain ridiculous and ludicrous, but the entertainment quotient is so high that you ignore the weak plot gradually. Nadeem-Shravan’s music is pleasant. The songs are well filmed too. Vijay Arora’s cinematography is excellent. Dialogues [Amit Aryan] are first-rate. In fact, a few one-liners actually bring the house down.

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Govinda is matchless in a David Dhawan film and DO KNOT DISTURB confirms this fact yet again. In fact, there are certain parts that only he can portray and David taps that potential to the fullest. Watch Govinda when he suddenly starts speaking in a female voice during the Ranvir Shorey episode. It’s howlarious!

Ritesh Deshmukh is superb. Matching Govinda in scene after scene is next to impossible, but Ritesh stands on his feet all through. His scenes with Lara also are thoroughly enjoyable. Lara Dutta springs a pleasant surprise. Known for glamorous roles uptil now, she handles the comic act extremely well. Also, she looks sensuous in several scenes. Sushmita Sen is wonderful, though she gets limited scope to prove her mettle.

Sohail Khan’s role is sketchy, hence it doesn’t make an impact. Ranvir Shorey is excellent. Manoj Pahwa and Rajpal Yadav are amazing in their respective parts. Himani Shivpuri is alright. Rituparna Sengupta is hardly there.

On the whole, DO KNOT DISTURB is a mass entertainer that keeps you entertained and smiling/laughing in most parts. At the box-office, this one lives up to the hype and expectations and that in turn should reflect very strongly in its business.

Wanted2

Although our tastes for film has improved manifold, we still don’t mind watching a hardcore action flick, where the hero is able to take care of more than a dozen criminals and escape unscathed. Wanted also falls in this same category. Although the film is bound with many loose ends, it still gives a thrilling experience. And Salman Khan takes the film to dizzying heights!

The story of the movie: Radhe (Salman Khan) is a one man army. He is a gangster who can do anything for the sake of money. Golden (Aseem Merchant), who works under Singapore-based Gani Bhai (Prakash Raj) invites Radhe to join his gang. Radhe becomes a part of Gani Bhai’s gang and nearly at the same time, falls for Jhanvi (Ayesha Takia). The eyes of Inspector Talpade (Mahesh Manjrekar), a corrupt cop at a nearby police station fall on Jhanvi and he desires to make her his mistress. Radhe then begins eliminating the rival gang members and also succeeds in impressing Jhanvi. But will Jhanvi be able to get into a relationship with a person like Radhe, who doesnt think twice before killing? And there’s a new Commissioner in Mumbai, Ashfaq Khan (Govind Namdeo) who has vowed to city crime-free. Will he become a threat to Radhe?

Wanted begins well and Salman Khan’s entry sets the mood wonderfully. However, after all character gets introduced, the film falls a bit and the story hardly moves. Thankfully, there are some funny interesting moments in the first hour that prevent the film from getting boring.  The intermission point was gripping and was well shot.

But things lighten up in the second half after Gani Bhai’s arrest. Commissioner interrogating Gani Bhai was hilarious. Later, the kahani mein twist moment in the pre-climax takes the film to a new high. In fact, it was what made the film stand out. Even though the climax was a bit lame, one won’t complain, thanks to the wonderful suspense.

Each character in the film is well written. Radhe, Gani Bhai, Jhanvi’s landlord (Manoj Pahwa) and Inspector Talpade were my favourites. As for the flaws, the film gets little dragging at places and the narrative just doesn’t go ahead. Also, the wonderful suspense also raises some questions. However, the impact is so huge at this point that one doesn’t get the chance to think of any goofs.

After Partner, this is surely Salman’s next best performance. In fact, it won’t be wrong to admit that Wanted is one of the finest performances ever given by Salman Khan! He fills life and colour to the rowdy character that he plays in Wanted. Also, Salman’s thoda-good boy-thoda-bad boy image helps a lot in doing total justice to his role! Hence, Salman was the perfect choice for this film and he comes up with flying colours. Hats off to Sallu!

Wanted

Ayesha Takia Azmi looks charming as everytime and manages to give a nice performance. Here’s an actor who deserves to get more and better roles. Mahesh Manjrekar plays the baddie with élan and also makes us laugh. Watch out for him in his entry scene and in his first meeting with Salman. Prakash Raj, a popular face down South and whose last Hindi film was Khakee, performs wonderfully. He is hardly there before interval but dominates in a lot of scenes in the 2nd half. Govind Namdeo gets a positive role after a long time and does a fine job.

Mahek Chahal was perfect in the role of the seductive moll. Aseem Merchant was simply fantastic. Why is this actor not getting enough roles? Manoj Pahwa was hilarious. Vinod Khanna and Inder Kumar do a nice job in their respective roles. The kid playing Ayesha’s brother leaves a mark too.

Sajid-Wajid’s music was energizing. Two songs steal the show, thanks to their execution-‘Jalwa’ and ‘Love Me Love Me’. Anil Kapoor, Govinda and Prabhudheva also make an appearance in ‘Jalwa’ which increases the appeal of the song. The song ‘Dil Leke’ is missing from the film. Salim-Sulaiman’s background score was good but could had been better.

Nirav Shah and S Sriram’s cinematography was outstanding and just the kind required for an action flick. Vijayan’s action was also praiseworthy. The action scenes were not foolish or funny but one which looked real and raw. Although the film has quite bloodshed, giving it an ‘A’ certificate was unnecessary.

Shiraz Ahmed’s screenplay wasn’t flawless but still works. However, his dialogues were phaadu, esp the ones mouthed by Salman! The best dialogue of the film is “Tu jis school se ye seekh ke aaya hai, wahaan ka headmaster mujhse tuitions leta hai!” Clapworthy, isn’t it?!

Puri Jagannadh’s story was indeed worth appreciating and appealing. This explains why three films are made from the same plot! Prabhudheva’s direction wasn’t top-class but still manages to come up with an entertaining action flick. His smart treatment to some of the scenes (esp the climax) enhances the film to a great extent.

Some of the best scenes of the film:
1.   Salman and Mahesh Manjrekar’s entry scene
2.   The song ‘Jalwa’ and ‘Love Me Love Me
3.   Radhe joining Gani Bhai’s gang
4.   Radhe and Inspector Talpade’s meeting at the basketball court
5.   Radhe and Jhanvi in the elevator
6.   The intermission point
7.   Radhe bashing up Talpade
8.   Commissioner Ashfaq Khan interrogating Gani Bhai
9.   Radhe fighting the goons in the local train
10. The last 35 minutes of the film

On the whole, Wanted is a cool action flick that will surely be loved by Salman fans. It has some loose ends but manages to impress. If you relish action flicks, this one is for you! Go for it and experience Salman Ka Jalwa!

My rating-*** out of 5!
This review first appeared on MouthShut.com: http://www.mouthshut.com/review/Wanted_Dead_or_Alive-175348-1.html

Wanted

By Taran Adarsh, September 17, 2009 – 19:15 IST

This is for fans and foes of Salman Khan…
Fans, rejoice, Salman is back with a vengeance with WANTED. This is his deadliest performance to date. Yes, you read it right!
Foes, sorry, you won’t be able to lash out at him or pick on him or launch a vicious tirade this time. The spate of flops should come to a grinding halt with WANTED.

Let’s get this straight. WANTED rides on Salman Khan’s star power. He may not be the best actor in town, but in a film like WANTED, in a role that seems like an extension of his personality, you can’t think of anyone else enacting this role with flourish.

BY BOLLYWOOD HUNGAMA.COM

A remake of POKIRI [made in Telugu and Tamil versions], WANTED is a full on masala film. Recall the successful potboilers of yore. Recall how the good guy would reduce 10 hoodlums to pulp in a fraction of seconds. Recall how heroism prevailed in the end, no matter how adverse the circumstances were or how powerful the villains would be. Recall those movies in which logic took a backseat since the focus was on entertainment… You relive those moments as reel after reel of WANTED unfolds.

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A departure from candyfloss movies and diabetic-sweet characters that most Hindi movies boast of, WANTED takes you back to those days when popular cinema reigned supreme, when the sole motive of the film-maker was to entertain.

The daring hero and his herogiri, the naïve girlfriend, the corrupt cop, the dreaded don, the don’s moll, the fist-clinching henchmen… WANTED is for those who seek unabashed entertainment and relish masala films. Damn the indomitable critics, pseudo intellectuals and connoisseurs of parallel cinema, this one’s not for them. WANTED is for the aam junta.

Radhe [Salman Khan] is a hardcore gangster. A sharpshooter with a sharp brain, he works for Gani Bhai [Prakash Raj], the dreaded Mafioso, but on his own terms. Totally fearless, Radhe single-handedly eliminates Gani Bhai’s enemies one by one; making more enemies in the process.

He’s astounded when the young and pretty Jahnvi [Ayesha Takia Azmi] professes her liking for him. Inspector Talpade’s [Mahesh Manjrekar] lustful eyes fall on Jahnvi. He doesn’t know that Jahnvi has developed a soft corner for Radhe.

Whether it’s the Golden Gang or Data Pawle’s Gang, everybody wants the biggest piece of the lucrative cake that is Mumbai and the only way to get it is to eliminate whoever gets in the way. As Mumbai reels under bloody gang wars, Commissioner Ashraf Khan [Govind Namdeo] vows to make the city crime free.

Director Prabhu Dheva serves a hardcore masala fare that’s not inventive or path-breaking by any standard, but the execution of several scenes as also of stunts takes the graph of the film Northward. In fact, if at all there’s any film that competes with GHAJINI as far as raw appeal goes, it’s WANTED. Every action/stunt/chase here is choreographed with aplomb.

Watch out for the action sequence at the interval point or the penultimate half-an-hour. The climax is sure to send scores of action lovers in frenzy, as Salman bashes the evil forces black and blue. It wouldn’t be erroneous to state that the climax is worth the price of the ticket, samosa, sandwich, popcorn, nachos and cola put together.

Not that this 18 reeler abounds in mindless action. As mentioned earlier, this one’s a hardcore masala film and the narrative has its share of light moments and romantic sequences. Even the bad man here makes you laugh intermittently [when he's not spewing venom], especially in the sequence when the Commissioner of Police holds him captive in the middle of the sea. Even the romance between Salman and Ayesha charms its way into your heart. It’s very likable.

But WANTED is not without its share of flaws. The film stands on a thin storyline and the viewer can guess what’s in store next, which means that there’s not much novelty in the plot. Besides, WANTED could’ve done without a song or two, thereby keeping its length in check.

Director Prabhu Dheva has presented Salman like never before. Most actors have drifted away from roles that hold tremendous mass appeal, that cater to the desi audience, like they did in the 1980s. SRK did it in OM SHANTI OM, Aamir Khan did it in GHAJINI and Salman does it so effortlessly in WANTED. The screenplay [Shiraz Ahmed] may not be foolproof, but it has its share of shining moments. Dialogues are clapworthy, especially those delivered by Salman.

Sajid-Wajid’s music is of a mixed variety. ‘Jalwa’ is the best of the lot and the star presence of Anil Kapoor, Govinda and also Prabhu Dheva in this track will send the viewers into raptures. The remaining tracks oscillate between good and strictly okay. This review would be incomplete without the invaluable contribution by the action director. It deserves brownie points. Cinematography too is top notch.

Salman is like a ferocious lion who roars with all his might. The show belongs to the actor, who scorches the screen every time he displays the manic anger. Without doubt, Salman gives the power to WANTED. It’s his best work to date.

Ayesha Takia Azmi is very good and the pairing with Salman looks wonderful. Vinod Khanna is sidelined. He deserved more footage. Mahesh Manjrekar is excellent. He’s only getting better with every film. Prakash Raj is first-rate. The accomplished actor adds yet another feather to his cap. Govind Namdeo is perfect.

Mahek Chahal radiates oomph. Aseem Merchant is alright. Raju Mavani is effective. Inder Kumar and Sajid are okay. Manoj Pahwa tries hard to make you laugh. Prateeksha Lonkar is as usual.

On the whole, WANTED rides on Salman, Salman and only Salman Khan’s star power. A masala film that’s aimed at the masses, WANTED is backed by tremendous hype and hoopla, which will result in the film taking an earth-shattering start at the ticket window. The Idd celebrations in the coming days will only enhance the business of the film, which means that the film will have a solid Week 1. The holidays in Week 2 should also be bountiful, thereby ensuring a strong place in the ‘Hit’ category.

By Taran Adarsh, September 11, 2009 – 13:59 IST

Recall those years when you were growing up. When you were in your teens. When you just stepped out of school. When you were learning to take independent decisions. When you were waiting to explore a whole new world… The images may be blur, but the flashes from the past should bring a smile on your face. Writer-director Rupali Guha tries to capture those years on celluloid in AAMRAS.

The concept is interesting, but the writing appeals in bits and spurts. It holds your attention at times, since the goings-on look believable. But the film takes a filmi route in its second hour and that robs the film of its freshness.

BY BOLLYWOOD HUNGAMA.COM

Final verdict? This aamras is just about okay!

AAMRAS is a coming of age youth film about friendship among four friends [all aged between 17-18 years], urban school girls – Jiya, Pari, Rakhi and Sanya. All four are very close and come from varied background, attending one of the most prestigious schools in Mumbai.

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All four have no secrets among themselves. They support one another in all their endeavours – good or bad. They have promised to remain friends forever, with no sorrys and no thank yous as their ‘mantra’. These friends will do just about anything to keep their friendship going.

The problem with AAMRAS is, it tries to do that balancing act in those 2 hours. Rupali should’ve chartered a singular path. The girl talk, for instance, is interesting. But the romantic track, with the lover surfacing in the end, looks like a complete compromise from the writing point of view.

Even the scholarship incident as also the sudden death of aai [Jiya's mother] could’ve been avoided.

Having said that, one also wishes to add that Rupali manages to keep your interest alive at several places. The MMS incident at the very start is one such instance. Also, the casting is just right, with the four girls essaying their parts with natural ease.

Vega [as Jiya], Ntasha [as Pari], Maanvi [as Rakhi] and Aanchal [Sanya] are efficient. Ajay Singh Choudhury [as Johny] gets no scope. Zarina Wahab and Reema are okay. Sunil Sinha [as Principal] and Manoj Pahwa are fair. The actress enacting the role of Jiya’s mom is very good.

On the whole, AAMRAS is interesting in parts only. However, the film will face an uphill task at the box-office because of lack of face-value and also, lack of hype.

SC2

In Bollywood nowadays, we normally get to see right scripts falling into wrong hands. Or we see wrong scripts falling into wrong hands (classic eg: Kambakkht Ishq!). But very rarely, we get to see right scripts reaching the right hands! Sankat City, the new small movie with entertains big time, comes in this category. It comes under the category of all the madcap comic capers that we are exposed to since years. Yet, it stands out due to its treatment which makes it ‘a masala entertainer for the classes’!

The story of the movie: Guru (Kay Kay Menon) is a petty thief who is an expert in stealing cars (and even towing vans!). His modus operandi is excellent-he steals a car, takes it to his partner-in-crime, Ganpat (Dilip Prabhawalkar) who repaints the car and Guru then sells it to Sharafat (Shri Vallabh Vyas) and makes a nice profit. Unfortunately, one day, Guru steals a swanky Merc which was parked outside a brothel. In the dikky, Guru is pleasantly surprised to find a bag containing Rs. 1 Crore. The money belonged to Fauzdar (Anupam Kher), a gangster-cum-moneylender and the money was to be sent to Gogi (Manoj Pahwa), a financially crippled film producer. Mona (Rimi Sen), Sikandar Khan (Chunky Pandey), Pachisia (Yashpal Sharma), Philip (Hemant Pandey), Guruji (Virendra Saxena) and others are the rest of the characters of the film. How the characters are inter-connected with each other forms the rest of the story.

Sankat City has a fast-paced narrative and doesn’t waste unnecessary time at all. The characters are quickly and wonderfully established in the first 10 minutes itself. The film excellently scores in the writing department. In most comic flicks, the situations and the humour are senseless and completely illogical most of the times. In the case of Sankat City, comic situations arise in situation which looks realistic and justified. And that’s one point where the film scores big time!

One gets the feel of the power of the script when it’s revealed how all the characters are wonderfully connected to each other. There are ample moments where the film would have fallen like a pack of cards but writer/director Pankaj Advani holds the script amazingly and doesn’t let it go on the wrong path.

There are numerous humour sequences in the film. The conversations of Guru and Ganpat were fabulous. Ganpat getting injured and the bomb blast sequence were the funniest scenes of the first half. In the second half, the scene shot inside BEST Bus was undoubtedly the best scene of the film! Hats off to the director for thinking something like this!

Now to the flaws. The film is perfectly executed. However, the scene where Guru makes a bomb hoax call and the sequence that follows looked a bit unrealistic, although it will be wrong to say that it wasn’t funny. And secondly, the film was very badly promoted. A film with such a fabulous cast would have easily attracted audiences if it was well publicized. It’s unfortunate that a big producer like Moser Baer failed to arouse curiosity for its own film.

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The film has more than dozen characters and it’s impossible to say who performed the best. Kay Kay Menon was as usual in full form and it was great to see him in a comic role after a long time. Same for Anupam Kher who was seen in a negative role after years. Rimi Sen looked charming and gave an excellent performance. I wish we get to see more of her. Chunky Pandey irritated a lot in Paying Guests but was terrific here in Sankat City. He was there in a double role and did complete justice to both the characters. Dilip Prabhawalkar was totally hilarious. Yashpal Sharma also managed to raise quite a many laughs! Virendra Saxena does the most unique role of his life and performs perfectly. Manoj Pahwa also did a good job. Hemant Pandey, Shri Vallabh Vyas, Sanjay Mishra, Jehangir Khan, Rahul Dev and Gurpal Singh were good.

Ranjit Barot’s music suits the movie well. Best song was without doubt, ‘Ghoom Ghoom’. All those looking for some hatke music should listen to all the 3 songs of this film! Chirantan Das’ cinematography was flawless.

Finally, the winner of the film is Pankaj Advani, who wrote the story, screenplay and dialogues and also directed the film. It seems he is inspired by Phir Hera Pheri, One Two Three and other such mindless comedies but yet he managed to come up with such a fine, rich product. He used his brains creatively and did complete justice to all the numerous characters that were there in the film. And although he came up with an excellent script, he executed it wonderfully and that’s where he won completely! Hats off to this person and let’s hope he comes up with such great films in future too!

Some of the best scenes of the film:
1.   Guru’s entry
2.   The bomb blast sequence
3.   Mona wooing Pachisia
4.   All scenes of Virendra Saxena
5.   Gampat getting injured
6.   Mona in the BEST Bus (marvelous!)
7.   Guru making a hoax call and the scene that follows
8.   Guru and Mona in the dumping ground (fabulous scene!)
9.   The climax

On the whole, Sankat City is a brilliant entertainer. With so many mindless entertainers nowadays, a film like this brings a welcome change. Watch it if you are starved of entertainment. Or at least, recommend it to as many moviegoers as possible. This film needs or rather, deserves to be watched!

My rating-**** out of 5!

This post first appeared on MouthShut.com: http://www.mouthshut.com/review/Sankat_City-171023-1.html

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By Taran Adarsh, July 10, 2009 – 10:09 IST

Sometimes, big things come in small sizes…

SANKAT CITY may not boast of stars to lure the audiences, it may not have a colossal canvas [on the contrary, the making is very basic], it may not have a terrific musical score to act as a hook [there are hardly any songs here], but SANKAT CITY succeeds, and succeeds largely, in its endeavour: Make the viewer laugh at the right places.

One walks in with zilch expectations [the promos don't do justice to the product], but when you make an exit from the audi, it’s with the feeling that the 2 hours were well spent.

By BOLLYWOOD HUNGAMA.COM

Comedies, today, can be segregated into two categories — Brain-dead entertainers and intelligent comedies. Films like JAANE BHI DO YAARO, BHEJA FRY and SANKAT CITY fall in the latter category.

Let’s be honest. Not all of us can think whacky or come up with a crazy madcap comedy like SANKAT CITY. It requires a wild and imaginative mind to come up with one and most importantly, execute it with panache. Debutante director Pankaj Advani gets its right on both the counts. Sure, there are glitches in the narrative, but Advani compels you to sit and listen to the story he intends narrating.

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Final word? Don't give SANKAT CITY a miss just because the film doesn't star the Khans or Kumars. This 'City' is worth a visit!

Guru [Kay Kay Menon] is a small-time car thief. Ganpat [Dilip Prabhawalkar], who owns a dilapidated garage, is his partner-in-crime. Guru robs cars and Ganpat gives them a make-over in order to sell them for tidy profits.

One night, Guru chances upon a swank Mercedes parked outside a brothel, unattended. He steals the car and takes it to Ganpat. While working on the car, they discover a sum of Rs. 1 crore in it. They are delirious with joy at the unexpected turn of events. Little do they know what’s in store, for the car and the money belong to a gangster/loan shark called Faujdaar [Anupam Kher]. What happens next?

It takes time to get a hang of things, but once the characters and their traits are introduced at the very outset, the goings-on become one joyride. The assorted characters and the way they are integrated in the storyline, as also the way they’re inter-connected, makes the film stand out.

If the first hour is akin to a roller coaster ride that you enjoy to the optimum, it’s the middle of the second half that bothers you. That’s because things stagnate and even get monotonous for a few minutes, before the climax strikes again.

SANKAT CITY is more like a relay. One incident leads to another, so on and so forth and it keeps you involved and entertained for most parts. But the most stunning sequence is reserved in the pre-climax when a bulldozer runs over a bagful of currency. A brilliant sequence!

SANKAT CITY is embellished with super performances by each and every member of its cast. Anupam Kher [terrific], Kay Kay Menon [excellent], Rimi Sen [first-class], Dilip Prabhawalkar [splendid], Chunky Pandey [very good], Manoj Pahwa [effective], Yashpal Sharma [first-rate], Hemant Pandey [perfect], Rahul Dev [good], Virendra Saxena [wonderful], Srivallabh Vyas [nice], Sanjay Mishra [decent]… every actor deserves praise. It’s as if the roles were tailor-made for them.

On the whole, SANKAT CITY is a small little gem that deserves a watch. Yes, there’s a bombardment of new films week after week and chances are that this film may get sidetracked thanks to the invasion of biggies, with the multiplexes sidelining it to embrace the biggies. But here’s a request to all cine lovers and also multiplexes, from this writer. Give this one a chance. Let’s nurture it well, so that genuine efforts like SANKAT CITY don’t go unnoticed

BOLLYWOOD HUNGAMA.COM


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