Fenil and Bollywood

Posts Tagged ‘charlie

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Parinda, Satya, Vaastav, Company and Gangster-these are handful of Hindi films which were based on the mafia/gangster menace and also very well executed. Now Baabarr should be added to this list of ‘finest gangster films of Bollywood’! The film is violent, gory and raw but at the same time, it’s thoroughly engrossing packed with award-winning performances and amazing execution! It was a must-watch but unfortunately, was missed by many!

The story of the movie: The film is based in Amarganj, the Uttar Pradesh town where criminal incidents occur daily and has become a part and parcel of the residents. In one of its dingy lanes, Baabarr (Sohum Shah) emerges as a ruthless gangster. Working with his 5 brothers, Baabarr runs an extortion racket and doesn’t think twice before killing. The govt entrusts the task of eliminating Baabarr and his gang and all their activities to S P Dwivedi (Mithun Chakraborthy). How Dwivedi, along with corrupted Daroga (Om Puri) go about doing their duty is what follows next in the film.

Director Ashuu Trikha may not accept, but the truth is that Baabaar, undoubtedly, is based on dreaded UP gangster, Rafiq Qureshi’s life. The director and the screenwriter (Ikram Akhtar) wonderfully trace Baabarr’s journey from his first murder at 12 years to his death at just 22 or 23 years. The film keeps you on the edge of your seat right from the beginning and has several high-voltage shocking scenes which give goosebumps.

One of the four factors that make Baabaarr stand out is that it takes us to a world which we are ignorant about. The film throws light on Amarganj where murders take place casually, where people have more guns in their houses than chairs, where people are never ever given lessons on good manners and where people are addressed as ‘Oye Pehelwan’ instead of ‘Hey Dude’! However, the setting doesn’t look unrealistic at all (it isn’t actually) and the viewer absorbs everything that is projected in the film. Secondly, every character in the film is added with a purpose and each of them is damn interesting. My 5 favourites were Baabarr, Daroga, Maamu (Tinnu Anand), Sarfaraaz (Shakti Kapoor) and the sexiest one in the film, Tabrez (Sushant Singh)!
Thirdly, everything that happens in the film has a purpose. Meaning, none of the scenes were unnecessarily added-it was all connected to the main plot. For instance, one may feel that grown-up Baabarr’s intro scene where he kills a businessman named Jilani was just added to project Baabarr’s ruthless and merciless nature. But the scene is well connected to the next one and also to the storyline. And lastly, the climax of this film is shocking! There is an excellent twist that takes place which catches you unawares! It doesn’t spoil the film at all and also looks justified. In short, a great work by the writer-director duo!

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Some scenes of the film are memorable. Baabarr’s first murder at 12 and Baabarr killing Jilani in his own factory set the mood. Tabrez finishing Akram in a cow slaughter house is gruesome scene but clapworthy. The intermission point was easily the best scene of the film!

The only glitch in the entire film is that it gets a bit slow in the 2nd half.

Every actor in the film has pitched in a fabulous performance-in fact, much much better than their other films in recent times. Newcomer Sohum Shah rocks with his finest performance. Since it his debut, he doesn’t come with the baggage of any past significant performance and thus, one connects to his character instantly. Also, the actor wonderfully exhibits the ruthlessness that his character needed. Even his dialogue delivery rocked. This year, except Raj Singh Chaudhary of Gulaal, none of debutants have managed to impress and hence, Sohum has high chance of bagging the Best Debut award next year!

However, the question arises that based on his appearance and the kind of character he played in Baabarr, will he be offered other types of roles in future? I hope he gets as he’s a truly a gem! Best of luck! (P.S.: Is Sohum Shah Mukesh Shah’s son who is the co-producer of the film?!)

Mithun Chakraborty does his job with élan. His meeting with Sohum is an explosive scene! Om Puri rocks and this was certainly one of the finest performances of his life. The way he changed his mannerisms, walking style and accent for this role and did a great job is definitely praiseworthy. Same goes for Sushant Singh who delivers phaadu performance! I have loved this talented actor since 16 December and am impressed to see him in such an interesting role. Here is an actor who deserves to be a superstar!

Urvashi Sharma was fine but one may argue that her character was unnecessary. Mukesh Tiwari was brilliant, esp in the pre-climax scene inside the prison. Ditto for Tinnu Anand, who shows his extremely talented side in the pre-climax. Shakti Kapoor is surprisingly, extremely likeable! Govind Namdeo was as usual. Kashish Khan as Baabarr’s wife gives a nice ‘Kaminey’s Charlie-type’ performance! Abbas Ali Moghul, the action director of the film, is there for a scene and plays the role of Akram Qasai. He’s a great actor! Pratima Kazmi plays Lilavati, a character based on Mayawati. Shockingly, a beep tone is inserted whenever her name is mentioned in the film! Others also do a great job.

Anand Raj Anand’s music was alright. The title song is impressive. Suhass Gujarathi’s cinematography is brilliant and the dingy by-lanes of Uttar Pradesh towns are well captured. Abbas Ali Moghul charms as the actor and also as the action director! Although some scenes had too much bloodshed, it was needed. Sunil Singh’s background score was in sync with the film’s mood.
Vikram Misra and Ikram Akhtar’s dialogues were one of the best things about the film. The best dialogue of the film (and one of the best in recent times) is: “Gas khatam ho gayi hai…tujhe jalakar chai banayenge tujh pe!” Absolutely rocking!

Ikram Akhtar has also written the story and script of the movie and he excels thoroughly! The film keeps you on the edge of the seat and doesn’t bore even for a moment! Great job by Akhtar, who has scripted some contrastingly light films like Nayee Padosan, Joru Ka Ghulam, Chal Mere Bhai etc!

Finally, Ashuu Trikha is a revelation! The director has always done a fine job in his past films (Deewanapan, Sheesha, Alag) but was let down by faulty scripts. In Baabarr, however, he is armed with a flawless script and he does a brilliant job. He succeeds in exposing the gangster-police-politicians nexus that is rampant in the interiors of the country and where lawlessness prevails. Hats off to Ashuu and hoping to see him with such nice films in future!

Some of the best scenes of the film:
1.   Baabarr’s childhood
2.   Baabarr finishing Jilani
3.   Tabrez’s entry
4.   Baabarr and Tabrez’ confrontation during the tender meeting
5.   The intermission point
6.   Baabarr shot
7.   Dwivedi teaches Daroga a lesson
8.   The last 25 minutes

On the whole, Baabarr is surely one of the best gangster films that has come out from Bollywood. Although it has excessive violence, it manages to impress with his intriguing execution and performances. The film wasn’t publicized well when it released in September this year. But now, all movie buffs, do catch it on DVD! Don’t Miss It!

My rating-**** out of 5!

This review first appeared on MouthShut.com: http://www.mouthshut.com/review/Baabarr-178084-1.html

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Shahid as Charlie in ‘Kaminey’

Insiya Amir | TNN (THE TIMES OF INDIA; September 19, 2009)


With homosexuality getting increased acceptance in the country, isn’t it time for Bollywood to get a gay, macho character? Actually, it might already have—in Charlie, the lisping ‘bad boy’ hero in this year’s hit, Kaminey.

From bloggers to critics, many have speculated about the sexuality of the character portrayed by Shahid Kapoor. To begin with, Charlie lisps—a standard gay stereotype. Apart from that, his relationship with Mikhail has distinctly homoerotic undertones. The two sing duets in a psychedelic nightclub, dance in the rain and make plans to run away—while rolling on the floor together— when Charlie tells Mikhail about the stash of cocaine he has chanced upon? And a scene where Mikhail
chases Charlie in a red sports car, amid pouring rain, would have had Freud smiling in glee.

What about the ending, which shows Charlie hitched to a gorgeous gal? Blogger Ganesh Chandrashekhar argues that it’s a postdeath dream. ‘‘Charlie dreams of being a successful bookie and married to a woman. This looks like Charlie’s homosexual guilt coming through, because the addition of a female character in the end seemed rather contrived, suggesting that he hopes to be straight in a highly homophobic society.’’

Other bloggers have pointed to Charlie’s emotional breakdown when he sees Mikhail’s corpse. And they see heavy symbolism in Charlie naming his dream bookie venture ‘Mikhail & Co.’, which is set up after he steals diamonds. Which by implication means Charlie stole
diamonds for Mikhail. If that isn’t true love, what is?

Chandan Roy Sanyal, who plays Mikhail, says he is aware of such arguments. ‘‘I don’t think the two
are gay, they just share a brotherly relationship. I grew up like this with my brother, a lot of bonding, touching,’’ he laughs. But he welcomes the buzz about the characters. ‘‘People thinking that Charlie is gay shows they are ready to accept that gay men do not have to be overtly effeminate,’’ says Sanyal, adding that he would love to play a role like Sean Penn in the Hollywood film Milk.

But Bollywood is only taking baby steps with movies like Dostana, says film critic Anupama Chopra. ‘‘We still portray gay men with limp wrists and rainbowcoloured accessories, mostly cast as a comic relief. It is a long time till we get a gay hero who is macho enough to be the lead actor. In fact, Vishal Bhardwaj told me if a sequel is made, Charlie will have a girlfriend,’’ she says. As conspiracy theorists might say, ‘‘Fo fad”.

Kaminey

For the first time ever, the collections of a film in Mumbai territory will be less than other territories of the country. The reason is obvious-the film wasn’t allowed to be released during weekends in the most profitable territory of the country due to the swine flu scare. But then came Monday and one of the most awaited films of the year, Kaminey, finally hit the screens in the city. Expectations were huge and it’s pleasurable to know that the film hits the bullseye and gives complete entertainment. After New York and Love Aaj Kal, Kaminey is surely the third biggie of the year which rocks!

The story of the movie: Charlie and Guddu (both played by Shahid Kapur) are twins. Both have speech defects and live separately and can’t stand the sight of each other. One rainy night, both commit a ‘sin’ which leads to corrupt cops, wicked politician and dangerous smugglers after them. And this was the night when they also run into each other. Will they be able to get out of the mess? And what such crime did they commit that so many villains were after them? Watch Kaminey and find out for yourself.

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The beginning of the film is very unconventional…actually the entire film is! The film holds you right from the beginning (more after the song Fatak) and grips you till the last scene. The situation, the set up, characters and their background…everything here is raw and rowdy.

First and foremost, what really is damn impressive about the film are its characters. Each one of them is unique, weird but very interesting. Whether it is Charlie or the good guy Guddu, his girlfriend Sweety (Priyanka Chopra) and especially the villains-all of them special and director Vishal Bharadwaj deserve special mention for treating each of them wonderfully and rightfully. Not a single character in the film is unnecessary and each one of them has a purpose in the narrative.

The situation in Kaminey somehow reminded me of Priyadarshan’s films, although both directors and their films are as different as chalk and cheese. But like Priyan’s madcap comedies, here too, the characters are many; there’s a case of mistaken identity and the climax also felt somewhat similar (I won’t reveal why). But unlike Priyan’s films, everything in Kaminey looks real and doesn’t seem illogical or nonsense.

There are several scenes which are really out of this world. The drama in the 5-star hotel was well executed and the Go Charlie Go theme played during this sequence sets your heart pumping and enhances the impact manifold! The marriage, the intermission point, Charlie, Mikhail and the evil Bhope Bhau’s confrontation were rocking scenes. The best scene of the film was without a doubt was the one shot in the local train. And such a climax was unexpected and unpredictable but it was justified and its execution is exemplary.

The only thing that fails here is the flashback of Charlie and Guddu. It just doesn’t work at all. However, it was well-shot, without a shred of doubt.

When someone like Vishal Bharadwaj is at the helm, it is obvious that we’ll get to see someone of the finest performances. And as expected, each performer in the film came up with a marvelous performance. Kaminey would surely be remembered as Shahid Kapoor’s best performance ever. Words are not enough to describe his praiseworthy act. It is evident that Shahid has worked very hard for this film and it shows, especially for the character Charlie. He plays both the part convincingly and this time, he is surely going to win the Best Actor award.  The year has not yet ended and many more films are yet to come where we may get outstanding performances. But I am sure no would would manage what Shahid did in Kaminey!

Priyanka Chopra also gives a brilliant performance and manages to maintain a respectable position in the film amongst so many talented actors. She was at her best in the song Raat Ke Dhai Baje and she looked and sounded wonderful in the Maharashtrian attire and accent! After Dostana and Fashion, Priyanka’s tryst of coming up with excellent performances continue!

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Amole Gupte (as Bhope Bhau) is the star of the film! He was just outstanding and played his part effectively. Watch out for the scene with Charlie in the latter’s house…his amused expressions are a treat! Another scene where he rocks was his conversation with Sweety on the phone. The way he says, “Kon aahe to mulga? Tyaacha naav kaay aahe?” (Who’s that guy? What’s his name?) rock as it was typically Maharashtrian accent and didn’t sound fake at all!

Besdies the aforementioned actors, there are many others who are unheard but they manage to impress a lot. Chandan Roy Sanyal as Mikhail was brilliant. Tenzing Nima as Tashi was outstanding. His character was cool and sexy and he played his part convincingly. Shiv Subrahmanyam and Hrishikesh Joshi as inspectors Lobo and Lele were perfect. The cop brothers in many scenes remind of Thomson and Thompson of Tintin series! Others were also great.

Vishal Bharadwaj also composed the music which is as exciting as the film. Dhan Te Nan is already a rage while the rest of the songs (Fatak, Raat Ke Dhai Baje, Kaminey) rock too. The theme music (Go Charlie Go) was outstanding! Gulzar as usual comes up with some of the best lines.

Tassaduq Hussain’s cinematography was highly superior and worked wonders in some of the scenes, esp in the climax. The production design was unique and top notch. The sets in the film looked cool and straight out of the real life. Take for instance, Guddu and Sweety’s residence and the surroundings. Then the scene where Sweety and Guddu are in a conversation and a stray dog enters the scene suddenly! And finally, Bhope Bhau’s haven seemed raw and in sync with the mood of the film.

Special mention should be made of Cajetan Boy, the African screenwriter, who gave Vishal the idea of Kaminey. Screenplay written by Vishal, Abhishek Chaubey, Supartik Sen and Sabrina Dhawan was highly effective. The four of them do a wonderful job and come up with one of the finest scripts in recent times.

Finally, Vishal Bharadwaj, the director, is a winner! He proves that he is a versatile genius! Making Kaminey was difficult but he comes out with flying colours. With this film, he also pays homage to the cultures and its people residing in Mumbai. Vishal also proves that one doesn’t need to go overseas to make a racy thriller. One can utilize the various moods, cultures and setups of the city to come up with an interesting film! Vishal, you rock!

Some of the best scenes of the film:
1.   The first scene
2.   The songs Fatak, Dhan Te Nan, Raat Ke Dhai Baje
3.   The scene inside the 5-star Hotel
4.   Sweety revealing the ‘secret’ to Guddu
5.   Charlie with the Guitar
6.   The marriage
7.   The intermission point
8.   Bhope Bhau and Mikhail at Charlie’s place
9.   The scene inside the local train (best scene!)
10. The last 30 minutes and the final scene

On the whole, Kaminey is one of the finest films of the year, undoubtedly! The film takes you into a raw, gripping world and grips from the start till the end. Do watch this film. One doesn’t get such novel films every Friday! Go Charlie Go!!

My rating-**** out of 5!

P.S.: Do hear the song ‘Dhan Te Nan’ carefully when you go for the film. The line ‘Teli Ka Tel’ is edited as ‘Dilli Ka Tel’ all thanks to the controversy surrounding the word ‘Teli’! Crazy!!

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By Taran Adarsh, August 12, 2009 – 21:34 IST

Dhan Te Nan. Vishal Bhardwaj pays homage to cinema of yore and that’s reason enough to go out and grab tickets for one of the most keenly anticipated films of our times.

A few monsoons ago, Farah Khan paid homage to the cinema of 1970s with OM SHANTI OM. Now Bhardwaj picks up characters that we have witnessed on the Hindi screen before, but executes it like Tarantino and Guy Ritchie do. He creates a film that’s so different from movies we’ve witnessed thus far.

BY BOLLYWOOD HUNGAMA.COM

Let’s say, KAMINEY is bold, stark, funny and unpredictable and that’s what works in its favour. There’re two more reasons: Shahid Kapoor and of course, ‘Dhan Te Nan’. Okay, we’ve seen Shahid pitching in a sincere act in his earlier films, but KAMINEY should catapult him to superstardom. His double role in KAMINEY is exemplary.

There’s another star in KAMINEY and that’s ‘Dhan Te Nan’. Your heart starts beating faster every time you hear this in the background or also when Shahid breaks into the song. The track is as big a craze as ‘Jumma Chumma’ [HUM], ‘Ek Do Teen’ [TEZAAB] and ‘Choli Ke Peeche Kya Hai’ [KHAL-NAYAK] and will contribute enormously in attracting viewers in hordes.

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Having said that, I wish to add that KAMINEY is not the usual masala film. Sure, it’s a well-made film, but there’s no spoon feeding here. One has to be attentive, very attentive to grasp the goings-on and also the twists in the tale. It’s not one of those lock-your-brains-at-home types, for sure. And that might not be too appealing a thought for those who swear by candyfloss or meaningless ha-ha-thons.

To cut it short, KAMINEY is a film with an attitude. Like it or leave it, but you’d never be able to ignore it. Word from the wise: Go for this hatke experience!

KAMINEY is about a pair of twin brothers, Charlie and Guddu [Shahid Kapoor]. Charlie lisps, while Guddu stammers. They are as different as chalk and cheese. And they can’t stand the sight of each other. Till one fateful rainy night, their lives cross.

Charlie gets mixed up in a deathly get-rich-quick scheme, while Guddu realizes that the love of his life, Sweety [Priyanka Chopra], has unwittingly put a price on his head. The brothers are sucked into a world of drugs, guns and money. Their lives collide head on with the lives of gangsters, rebel soldiers, rogue politicians and crooked cops.

The brothers have to run to protect themselves, their dreams, their love. And most importantly, realize that all they have is each other.

It takes time to get used to the world Vishal Bhardwaj wants us to enter. The characters, the relationships, the lingo, the tone and the setting… frankly, you don’t take to KAMINEY instantly. But twenty minutes into the film and things start falling in place. From thereon, you’re drawn into a different world completely.

The interval point raises the bar and also the expectations. The story takes a dramatic turn at this juncture, but minutes before that, ‘Dhan Te Nan’ makes the proceedings exhilarating and stimulating.

Right from the sequence after the interval to the finale, Vishal Bhardwaj peels off layer after layer, which erupts like a volcano towards the end. The end is long drawn and with so many characters in the film, it only takes time to give a culmination to each of those characters. And that gets tedious. The violent end might not find universal acceptance. Vishal Bhardwaj proves that he’s a master storyteller. KAMINEY is a damn difficult film to conceptualize and execute and Vishal does it with gusto. Besides the soundtrack [‘Dhan Te Nan’], the effectual background score only enhances the impact. The dialogues, also penned by Vishal, are super. At places, clapworthy. Tassaduq Hussain’s cinematography is top notch.

Shahid takes a really big leap with KAMINEY. Note how he handles the two characters, Guddu and Charlie, brilliantly. This film is a step to superstardom and also which will open new doors and vistas for him as an actor. Priyanka is first-rate. She’s so much in sync with her character. Also, she gets the Maharashtrian accent perfect. Amole Gupte is outstanding. An incredible actor! Tenzing Nima and Chandan Roy Sanyal leave a solid impression. Shiv Subrahmanyam and Hrishikesh Joshi are perfect.

On the whole, KAMINEY lives up to the hype associated with it. The film has three stars — Vishal Bhardwaj [a name that’s immensely respected by moviegoers], Shahid Kapoor and ‘Dhan Te Nan’ — and this combo as also the crooked characters and a genuinely hatke subject should guarantee ample footfalls in cineplexes even after its initial weekend. The weekend business should be huge due to the holidays all through the weekend: Friday [Janmashtami], Saturday [Independence Day] and Sunday. Of course, the business is bound to be affected in parts of Mumbai territory due to Swine Flu, but the film should take off in a big way when theatres re-open.

Shahid was inspired by his dad Pankaj Kapur’s style of acting for his double role in Kaminey
By Subhash K Jha (MUMBAI MIRROR; July 11, 2009)

Shahid Kapoor in Kaminey

Shahid Kapoor, who plays a double role for the first time in Kaminey, has adopted his father Pankaj Kapur’s method of acting. Both the characters, Guddu and Charlie, played by the actor have speech defects — one stammers and the other lisps.

Pankaj Kapur has played two extremely diverse roles in Anubhav Sinha’s Dus. When director Vishal Bharadwaj asked the senior actor’s son to play the morally-incompatible twins, Shahid apparently studied the way his father played the double role in Dus.

Amole Gupte, who plays the villain in Kaminey, confirmed the news and said that he has never witnessed such diligence. He said, “When Shahid played Guddu, who stammers, he completely internalised all of the character’s traits, including the stammer, so the character doesn’t end up looking like a caricature.”

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Amole Gupte

On many occasions, Shahid would remain in character for days so that he wouldn’t lose thread of the two roles. Elaborating on Shahid’s preparation for the role, Amole said, “Shahid stayed on the sets throughout and did not retreat into his vanity van to keep absorbing the ambience and the sweaty milieu in which Guddu and Charlie had to function in their own separate ways. I know that Pankaj works in the same way.

I truly believe that Shahid has inherited his father’s ability and style of performing without appearing to act. It is definitely in his genes. When you’re facing the camera with a co-star, you become compatriots in the canvas of characterisation. I was startled by Shahid’s passion for excellence. I saw the same quality in Aamir Khan (Taare Zameen Par).”