The Film Guide The Film Guide | English Movie Reviews Hollywood | : 2011

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Albert Nobbs (2011) Review

"I begin with the name of Allah, the most merciful".

An amazing movie with a stellar performance by Glenn Close. Albert Nobbs is a woman who spends all her life disguised as a man. Working as a waiter she is always looking to get a shop of her own, aspiring to be a tobacconist. The movie takes us on an amazing journey through her life and death.

Acting is amazing and characters are believable. The movie might seem slow but that is the beauty of it. Even silence means something in this beautifully put film. Watch out for some Oscar results!

I rate it 4.5/5. It is worth a watch!

Monday, December 5, 2011

Catch .44 (2011) Review

Catch .44 is a good attempt at venturing into Tarantino's world of film-making. The movie has a shoot'em up treatment and is actually quite good in places. The cast is a mix of some great actors and some not so very good ones. The girls are poor actors while actors like Bruce Willis and Forest Whittaker have put in amazing performances. If only the lead female actor was a decent enough performer or for that matter even an extremely hot ass the film would have turned out much better.

I rate it a 3/5 for overall decency. Have a  look!  

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Conan 3D (2011) Review

Conan 3D was a movie that I waited for for a long time just because I had Arnold's Conan in mind. The film however disappointed me a bit because to me it was nothing more than a 300 wannabe! The treatment of the movie was good in parts but the weak story line and an even weaker script made it a difficult one to sit through. The action was average with a lot of room for improvement, a reason the film lacked any respect as far as I am concerned.

Moreover, the unnecessary frontal nudity makes it a film not entirely suited to kids either when the filmmakers should have actually targeted the young ones given the genre of the film.

All in all I rate it a 2/5 and deem it a thoughtless effort! 

Sunday, May 8, 2011

The Roommate (2011) : Obsessed and Dangerous

Article first published as Movie Review: The Roommate (2011) on Blogcritics.

Hollywood has seen a mushroom growth of horror/thrillers based on the psychotic behavior of the human mind. From the days of Hitchcock, through the times of Psycho and finally to the era of Jason we have been exposed to such extremities of mental illness that it becomes utterly difficult for any modern day movie based on lunacy to make an impression. Having said that, I have to admit that The Roommate does make an impact on the viewer and has much to offer in terms of thrill and suspense.

The Roommate tells the story of Sara (Minka Kelly), a fashion student with a new roommate. Sara had shared a room all her life with her sister Emily, who died around a year earlier leaving Sara alone. Sara's new roommate is her first since the death of her sister, so Sara felt a little emotional (in a good way) about sharing the room. Sara doesn't know however that her roommate Rebecca (Leighton Meester) is a little too protective to say the least!

As the movie progresses, Rebecca gets irritated by everyone who tries to come close to Sara. She scares her close friends away and tries to prevent Sara from getting into a relationship. Sara just feels that Rebecca is overprotective towards her and doesn't take it seriously until she finds a secret! A secret that makes Rebecca's own parents fear her!

Why is Rebecca so obsessed with Sara? Why are her parents afraid of her and why is she so uneasy with Sara having a boyfriend? Is she in love with Sara or is their something more dangerous than love lurking in the depths of Rebecca's mind? Watch The Roommate to find out.
I Rate it 3.5/5 for the gripping storyline and good acting. The Roommate keeps the audience interested and hence is a good use of time. I thoroughly enjoyed the film and would recommend it to everyone. You surely won't be disappointed!

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Review: Morning Glory ~ Watch Morning Glory Online Free Streaming

Article first published as Movie Review: Morning Glory on Blogcritics.

Harrison Ford, Diane Keaton and Rachel McAdams make up the formidable star cast of the comic drama Morning Glory. The film is based on the challenges associated with running a successful morning show and also looks into the common bias that "serious" journalists hold against the supposedly meaningless content of the morning shows.

Morning Glory follows the efforts of a passionate morning TV-show producer Becky Fuller (Rachel McAdams) as she tries her level best to prove to the world that she is good at her job. After getting fired from her job as a producer she ends up getting a job at half her previous salary as the producer of a morning show called "Daybreak" that had no following and seemingly no future. Before pulling the plug on the show the channel gives Becky a chance to raise the ratings and hence buy some more time for the show.

Becky is happy to be at the helms of a morning show again but she soon realizes that her job is a very tough one. The show is hosted by Colleen Peck (Diane Keaton) who is extremely disappointed by the show's performance and has given up all hopes of getting back in the lime light. Becky decides to make some changes and that leads her to firing the male host of the show. She accidentally comes across her role model, the legendary news reporter Mike Pomeroy (Harrison Ford) and tries to get him to host the show. Pomeroy turns out to be the most egotistical creature she has come across, perhaps second only to his co-host Colleen Peck.

The story ahead sees Becky working her backside off to make
Pomeroy and Peck co-exist on the show. Her personal life also becomes a little complicated when love knocks on her door in form of the handsome Adam Bennet (Patrick Wilson).

Harrison Ford has shown his class as an A grade actor and Diane Keaton has worked her charm without letting get the better of her. She really looks sexy even with wrinkles on her. The star however is Rachel McAdams and she has acted exceptionally well. She has taken the film to a whole new level with her sparkling charisma and panache. She makes you cry and she makes you laugh but never in the whole duration of the film does she let you take your eyes off her!

I rate Morning Glory a whooping 4/5 simply because a young lady has outshone stars like Harrison Ford and Diane Keaton making the film a treat to watch.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Movie Review: The Rite

All ardent fans of cinema, especially those who appreciate acting ahead of the use of technology, eagerly wait for Anthony Hopkins' films. He has definitely not disappointed his fans this time. Hopkins leads the cast in the latest Horror/Thriller The Rite based on the rituals of exorcism, and he has given an outstanding performance to say the least.

The Rite is a story of a young man, Michael (Colin O'Donoghue) whose father runs a funeral home. Michael is himself a seminary student but is not particularly fond of dressing up the dead and hence decides to give the priesthood a chance. He takes up a course, spending four years studying, but in the end he decides not to pursue priesthood; Michael does not actually believe in God.

The father at his school asks him to give God a chance and take an exorcism course in Rome. Reluctantly, Michael leaves for Rome thinking that he would find nothing that could budge his reasoning.

In Rome Michael finds it hard to come to terms with the idea of spirits, possessions and exorcism; his teacher refers him to an exorcist named Father Lucas (Anthony Hopkins).

Lucas is an unorthodox practitioner and a very straight forward man. He shows Michael how he interacts and fights demons and spirits. Michael is persistent with his disbelief and thinks that Lucas's patients are psychological patients rather than possessed people.

What follows, eventually forces Michael to believe in the Devil and in God! Also what follows makes the audiences marvel at the acting supremacy of one of the finest actors ever to have graced the screen, Anthony Hopkins! One can only salute the awesomeness of this amazing actor.

I won't tell any more about the story because I don't want to spoil it for you but The Rite is definitely right up there with the best films of the year and Anthony Hopkins as Father Lucas is phenomenal. I rate is 4/5 and recommend it highly!

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Movie Review: Love And Other Drugs(2010)

Article first published as Movie Review: Love And Other Drugs on Blogcritics.
Jamie (Jake Gyllenhaal) is leading a mediocre life. He is a real hard worker but is always on a look out for shortcuts in life. He is a charming gentleman and believes in living it up. He works in an electronics store, but after awhile is fired. 
His best friend Bruce helps him find a job at a pharmaceutical company. His interpersonal skills helps him excel as a pharamceutical company representative. On a routine visit to a nearby clinic he meets Maggie (Hathaway) for the first time. After a few more accidental encounters, Jamie sees a chance for himself with Maggie. She is an alluring free-spirited girl who does not believe in relationships. On the other hand Jamie also is a carefree person whose ultimate goal always is to satisfy his sexual desires. They embrace each other like lock and key.
With the passage of time Jamie and Maggie who were leading a happy unconcerned life with each other, find themselves in a relationship. Things eventually go their way but then suddenly life takes a huge turn, and they find their love life in lots of trouble.
Love and other Drugs lies somewhere between comedy, romance and drama, but it is mainly a romance. In my view it is a good movie but the story is very patchy and lacks cohesiveness. It seems that somewhere in the middle of the movie, the writer lost the plot.
Hathaway and Cyllenhaal are the real attraction to this movie. There are some very explicit sex scenes with Anne Hathaway; she looks good, and looks prepared for her upcoming Cat-Woman role in Batman. Jake Gyllenhaal is cute as ever and his dorky, nerdy looks are amusing and great to watch. He has also acted reasonably well. 
Although the movie has one foot in the comedy genre and the other in the "soft-porn-of-the-year" genre, I still recommend Love and Other Drugs. It is will not only keep you hooked for two hours but will provide you ultimate entertainment. I rate it 3/5 and you should give it a try!

Friday, April 15, 2011

Movie Review: Good Will Hunting

Article first published as Movie Review: Good Will Hunting on Blogcritics.

Good Will Hunting rotates around the life of an extra-ordinary talented guy Will Hunting. He belongs to a working class neighbourhood in Boston. He is an introvert and his life revolves around low skilled jobs, hanging out with friends, fighting, and getting in trouble.

Will spends a lot of time at home, alone, interpreting books and storing information in his pictorial memory. His intelligence is brilliant and he can easily solve difficult mathematical problems that elude eminent math professors.
An orphan, Will grew up in a series of foster homes in which he was repeatedly beaten. As a result, Will has a classic attachment disorder. He cannot form trusting relationships with other adults. He cannot control his fury. He cannot integrate his intelligence into his relationships with others, in either communal or work environments. Will's only demonstrative attachments are to a group of three young men from his neighborhood who cannot by any means match his intellect.
Will works as a janitor at MIT (Massachussets Institutute of Technology) but people there are oblivious to the fact that he is a mathematical genius. One day, a mathematics professor at MIT, Gerald Lamdeau, posts a mathematical problem on the board outside the class and asks his students to solve that problem. He also tells them that it took him and his colleagues about two years to solve that question. The reward that he puts up for the solution is the recognition of the student in the MIT Tech Magazine. The next day the professor finds the question, solved on the board. In this way he discovers Will’s great talent.

Good Will Hunting shows that you don’t need universities or colleges to be a genius. If you are a genius, the world will find you and surely, will take you to the place you deserve. It is not your background but the skill and talent that matters in the end.

Good Will Hunting also traces the successful treatment of Will's attachment disorder providing an excellent basis for studying the origin and treatment of this psychological condition. Filled with wisdom and compassion, the movie shows the power of verbal therapy and gives an example of the life-varying insight that can be afforded by psychology. The film is also a catalyst for discussions about the role of dependence, independence and interdependence in human life and the importance of love and consistency in parenting.
The movie also shows the young male culture of brutality and reveals that the need to be tough, to never show vulnerability, susceptibility, weakness, hurt, or sadness leads to a dead end. The movie shows devotion and sincerity towards friends as being the essence of a happy life. It is also a reassuring message to victims who have been physically abused or harmed.

The cast is amazing, with Matt Damon and Robin Williams doing what they do best i.e sweeping audiences off their feet. The transformation of Will from being a traumatized young man to becoming a recognized genius and the role of a mentor in his fight against his demons are both expertly portrayed by these extremely gifted practitioners of acting. At times one can just say a single word and nothing else for their effort; Bravo!

I rate it 4/5 for the content and beautiful portrayal.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Movie Review: Chain Letter (2010)

Article first published as Movie Review: Chain Letter (2010) on Blogcritics.

The success of the Saw series, especially the resurrection of the franchise after Saw 3D, has caused many movie makers to follow in its footsteps. 2010 saw a very well made film called The Tortured and another social thriller called Chain Letter.

Chain Letter addresses the issue of man's over-dependence on technology in the most scariest of ways. It showcases how we have linked ourselves to IDs and numbers, making us traceable and vulnerable.
The film revolves around a group of IT students in am esteemed IT institute who receive a chain letter warning them that if they do not forward it the break of chain would result in the loss of a life. As they are killed one by one and in gruesome ways the viewer realizes how he himself is in reach of any random psychopath searching twitter or Facebook for his next victim! With the premise being close to reality and the events ahead being relevant to all of us the Chain Letter is a chilling experience to say the least.
Chain Letter is rushed in places and that is perhaps the only turn-off. Some of the killings are abrupt and the chain messaging is not tracked in appropriate detail. The historic references to cults and anti-tech groups are also muffled up and are not properly linked to the story. In the end, one really do not understand if it was a single serial killer or a systematic sect doing the killings. The cast comprising Nikki Reed and Keith David etc. has acted average and there is nothing too special to write home about in that regards.
All in all Chain Letter is a thought provoking effort but lacks the technical credentials of an utterly enjoyable movie. I rate it 3/5 mainly because of the content and not the treatment.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Movie Review: The Godfather Trilogy

I recently saw All Good Things and a scene therein reminded me of the all time blockbuster and the queen of all feature films, The Godfather Trilogy. I realized how after so many years since the first part's release, the film still remains a must see and one still marvels at the acting that was on display in every scene of the trilogy.

Since I saw The Godfather in one go i.e all three parts at once, I have always considered the trilogy as one big film and not as three different films. This way I have never ventured into the comparison of the three parts and that has made me admire the trilogy on the whole and as a masterpiece without worrying about any one of the parts being superior.

The Godfather Trilogy to me is Al Pacino's finest work and perhaps his role as Michael Carleone is the best character ever to have graced the screen. Al Pacino according to me has outdone Marlon Brando and Robert De Niro and has made the trilogy his own without anyone else even coming close to his greatness. To me the second-best performance in the film is Andy Garcia as Vincent Mancini.
The cartel, the power and the rise of Carleone's is a treat to watch but what underlines it all is the transformation of Al Pacino from a timid young man to a shrewed gangster and then to an aspirant white-collared businessman.
The Godfather Trilogy is the greatest film of all times and one must see it to believe the myth! I rate it 5/5 and that is because the I have no more to give.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Movie Review: Game (2010)

Article first published as Movie Review: Game (2010) on Blogcritics.

Bollywood's ambition of successfully making a murder thriller has very seldom matured into a watchable film. Unlike rom-coms like Band Baaja Baraat, thrillers don't fare too well with the audience. The main reason behind the incapability of Indian cinema as far as thrillers are concerned is the copied script/story that is often borrowed from a Hollywood flick. What happens is that film-makers borrow a story from Hollywood but do not have the budget or the technical expertise to carry the film forward. Another issue is the limited number of stars available to the film-makers and their reluctance in casting anyone who is not a popular star!

"Game" suffers with the later more than the former. As far as the script is concerned, the film has a very jumbled up story that is good in parts but unbelievably poor in others. It is very patchy with a feeling that many individual parts of the story were forcefully attached together to make a whole.
"Game" is a story about a man Kabir Malhotra (Anupam Kher) whose illegitimate daughter is killed in her early 20s. He collects evidence against the people who he blames for her death and calls them deceptively at his personal Island only to hand them over to international police. The people he invites are, OP Ramsay (Presidential Candidate of Thailand) (Boman Irani), Neil Menon (Drug Dealer) (Abhishek Bachchan), Tisha Khanna (The twin sister of his dead daughter) (Shahana Goswami) and Vikram Kapoor (A film actor) (Jimmy Shergil). After he has told them their contributions in the death of his daughter and that they will be handed to the police with the file that has evidence against them, Kabir Malhotra apparently commits suicide by shooting himself in the temple leaving all four of his guests as suspects for murder!

When Inspector Sia Agnihotri (Kangna Ranaut) comes to take the evidence and the four guests as requested by Kabir, she in turn finds Kabir dead and her intelligent investigation soon reveals that Kabir did not kill himself but was murdered.
"Game" is a search for Kabir Malhotra's murderer and what happens next is better seen than narrated, so I won't spoil it for you.
The cast has failed to impress, with Abhishek doing what he does best i.e playing a slick, stylish role and Jimmy Shergil doing what he does best i.e miserably failing to impress! The worst performance, however, was Kangna Ranaut's and that may be due to the inappropriate casting more than anything else. For a girl who is not comfortable speaking English, to be given a character that speaks more English than Hindi, is unfair and extremely senseless. All in all the acting was below par.

The film's overall impression is below average, with stale action sequences, poor dialogs (unlike Farhan Akthar) and mediocre acting (despite some heavy names). I give it a meager 2.5/5 and you can skip it if you have better things to do!

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Flipped (2010) : Beautiful, Inspiring!

Movie: Flipped (2010)
Rating: 4.5/5

Very seldom does a film touch you so strongly that you are forced to write about it as soon as the screen time is over. Flipped is a film that remained on my shelf for a long time for the simple reason that many high profile films with great cast grabbed my attention ahead of it. I was however surprised and slightly embarrassed at my utter underestimation of the film.
Flipped is a story about Julie Baker and Bryce Loski, two kids in there early to mid teens living in the same neighborhood but not exactly best of friends. In fact they have a very one-sided relationship with Julie the admirer and Bryce the one utterly disinterested and irritated by her persistence towards making a relationship out of nothing. What doesn't help Julie's cause at all is Bryce's father's reaction and impression of Julie's family in general and her father in particular. This arrogance rubs off and Bryce, although unintentionally, breaks Julie's heart. The relationship between Julie and Bryce's Grandpa is the true peaking point of the film and with all this on show the story is an interesting one to follow. Talking more about it is going to be a major spoiler so I would implore you to see it yourself and enjoy.
Flipped is a comparison of naturalism with materialism and simplicity with shrewdness. It conveys strongly that simplicity is beautiful and goodness never goes unreturned. You are extremely satisfied emotionally after watching this one and that is the true essence of the film.
The cast has acted brilliantly with both Mandelline and Callan giving amazingly matured performances. One especially marvels at the solidity of the performances by the child duo. All in all a movie worth a watch for everyone looking to learn something from life.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Life As We Know It (2010) Review

Movie Title: Life As We Know It
Cast: Katherine Heigl, Josh Duhamel, Josh Lucas
Rating: 4/5

Two single adults become caregivers to an orphaned girl when their mutual best friends die in an accident.

This movie shows us the reality of our lives in a funny way. Most of between or around us are afraid of taking responsibility and are always finding ways to avoid it. But the thing we always forget is that no matter what we do we cannot avoid the realities of live. This movie shows us the life of two people who are compelled to do something which was against their will and nature but after experiencing that particular responsibility they discover a new life a life of happiness and love. So from my perspective this is a great movie to watch which tells us that responsibility doesn’t always bring hardship in one`s life but it also helps him to explore some true happiness of life. That is why this movie has been given the title “Life As We Know It”.

I really enjoyed the movie, i was expecting more, but it wasn't bad after all. I'd say i found it funny & overwhelming, not a chance that I've wasted my time, definitely a very appropriate story and an ideal first-time parent concept.

The presence of the the social worker was perfect, It gave the story much warmer scenes, and funnier moments.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

National Lampoon's Dirty Movie (2011) Review

Article first published as Review: National Lampoon's Dirty Movie (2011) on Technorati.

Movie: National Lampoon's Dirty Movie (2011)
Cast: Christopher Meloni, Diane Neal and Stephanie Gatschet
Rating: 3.5/5 

Well, of all the dirty comedies that you could come across, National Lampoon's Dirty Movie is the most direct and uninhibited attempt at ridiculing and taunting almost everyone on the planet in one way or the other. The fact that the movie does not point at any one community or sect makes it an enjoyable watch since one can laugh at one's own self and others alike.
As for the story of the film, there is none! The film is a collection of jokes acted on screen and put together in no particular order or form. They are just independent jokes and nothing more. Jokes range from pedophiles, to Arabs, to Jews, to Niggers and so on. The quality of jokes and the dirtiness that they possess is especially of great interest.
Apart from the jokes themselves the double standards about jokes are also a topic of discussion in this film. It sheds light on how we are prepared to laugh on others and not our own selves and ideas.
All in all it is a great watch with titties flapping and bouncing and jokes flowing like a river of excitement. If it doesn't get you crying with laughter it might wet you in other places of importance.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Due Date (2010) Review

Article first published as Review: Due Date (2010) on Technorati.

Movie: Due Date (2010)
Cast: Robert Downey Jr., Zach Galifianakis and Michelle Monaghan
Rating: 4/5

It is very seldom that a comedy is as gripping as Due Date without a female lead featuring in it. Most comedies take the help of a woman's sexuality, bordering on the edge of obscenity in order to create a surprise for the audience. Due date is nothing like that. It is an amazing film and one that should not be classified under a single genre. It is not only a comedy but a drama as well.
Due date is about two men from distinctly different setups and backgrounds who hook up in bizarre circumstances and end up travelling together. Peter Highman is a successful businessman who is having the worst day of his life. He has to reach Los Angeles to see the birth of his child but fate has other things in mind. He meets Ethan Tremblay a loser by every definition but his own and in extraordinary circumstances both of them end up on a no fly list when Ethan's drugs are caught from Peter's luggage. What follows is a worth seeing story of this couple's journey to Los Angeles.
Robert Downey Jr. as Peter has outdone himself and proved that his comic timing is amazing. Zach Galifianakis has played a very difficult role with utter ease and makes you both love and hate him in every scene he performs in. The rest of the cast is negligible but adequate.
Please do watch the film because it is a wonderfully told story and deserves all the audience it gets.

Hereafter (2010) Review

Article first published as Review: Hereafter (2010) on Technorati.

Movie: Hereafter (2010)
Cast: Matt Damon, Cécile De France and Bryce Dallas Howard
Rating: 2/5

One of the biggest disappointments in recent memory for me has been the much hyped Hereafter starring Matt Damon. Being a fan of the actor and his work in films like Green Zone, The Borne trilogy etc. I expected him to carry the film on his shoulders and make it a wonderful experience. The performance from his was dull to say the least but it is not entirely his fault.
Hereafter lacks a script and that too in entirety. It is a patchy film with many tragic incidents put together but by the end hardly any one of them connects to the main protagonist in a way that is gripping or inspiring.
The acting is average and for a supposedly traumatic storyline they lacked the emotional magnetism required for the to make an impact.
The yawning stretches of continuous, seemingly unmoving scenes and situations makes for a very droopy and gloomy viewing experience with no depth of story or dialog.
All in all Hereafter is a shame and can easily be avoided. Don't be fooled by Matt Damon's picture on the cover, this is by far his worst till date!

Monday, March 7, 2011

Robot (2010) [Bollywood] Review

Article first published as Review: Robot (2010) [Bollywood] on Technorati.

Robot 2010

Movie: Robot (2010)
Cast: Rajni kanth, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan
Rating: 4.5/5

It is very seldom that one is totally blown away by the action sequences and special effects in a Bollywood flick but Super star Rajni's Robot is an exception. It is the most expensive film ever made in the history of the Indian film industry.

robot 2010 amazing pic

Robot is the story of Chitti (Rajni Kanth) a humanoid-android made by a genius scientist Vasee (Rajni Kanth). Chitti is a unique Robot in that it can learn and execute humanly possible tasks but initially is rejected by the Artificial Intelligence Authorities because of its inabilities to differentiate between right and wrong. Trying to solve the problem Vasee gives Chitti the ability to feel and therein lies the biggest problem. Chitti falls in love with Vasee's fiancée Sana (Aishwarya Rai). When Vasee finds out he dismantles Chitti and garbages him only for him to get in the hands of Vasee's rival and mentor Prof. Bora. Bora makes Chitti into a demon by giving him an extra chip. What follows is a roller coaster battle between a creator and his most prized creation.

Robot 2010 many gunsrobot 2010 open head
The acting by Rajni and Aishwarya has been outstanding. Aishwarya has looked the prettiest in a long long time and every glimpse of her in the film is a pleasure to watch. She looks like an object so attractive that a Robot can grow feelings for. Rajini as Chitti is outstanding with a Robot like expressionless face and digital movements.

Aishwarya sexy cleavageAishwarya hot breastsAishwarya robot beachAishwarya sexyAishwarya backlessAishwarya hot assAishwarya wet nakedAishwarya eyes

What is most impressive in this Sci-fi flick is the quality of special effects. It puts films like Iron man 2 to shame with the formations that Chitti takes. One particular scene with the giant serpent is absolutely amazing! The look of the film is slick and sharp and parallels any Hollywood movie.

Rajni chitti robot
I felt very strongly that if Inception had the best special effects in Hollywood this year, then Robot was its apt counter part in Planet Bollywood.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

7 Khoon Muaaf (2010) [Bollywood] Review

Article first published as Review: 7 Khoon Muaaf (2010) (Bollywood) on Technorati.

Movie: 7 Khoon Muaaf (2010)
Cast: Priyanka Chopra, John Abraham, Irrfan Khan, Naseer-ud-din Shah
Rating: 3.5/5
Vishal Bhardwaj has pulled another gem out of his treasury of marvels. His new film 7 Khoon Muaaf with Priyanka Chopra leading the cast and greats like Nasir-ud-din Shah and Irrfan Khan supporting her was a treat to watch.
The film is a gripping saga of a woman's search for love and her extreme bad luck at finding it in the wrong companions every time.
Narrated by a boy who was brought up and educated by the very woman, the story of the film is about how a woman had the worst possible taste for men and how she never allowed her wrong choices to come in the way of her expressing her love. It is a story of her 7 husbands and how she murders each one of them.
Suzzanne Marie is the daughter of a very rich estate owner and is a woman who doesn't take no for an answer.
She gets everything she wants and that too on her terms. Sahab, as the narrator addresses her, has three loyal servants: a maid, a jockey and a butler. The narrator's first encounter with Suzzanne changed his life and she took the responsibility of educating him. He, however harbored a romantic attraction for her. Over the span of the years that took the narrator to grow from a 10-12 year boy to a grown-up forensic doctor "Sahab" married 6 men and then killed them one by one fabricating each murder to look like an accident. Each time helped by her servants and justified by the ill characters of her husbands she managed to escape the law.
Finally, she supposedly burnt herself to death and her burnt body came to the narrator for medical verification. The narrator confirmed her death, knowing that it wasn't her body. At a very old age the Sahab married one last time and the 7th husband was Jesus Christ. She became a nun and in the end confessed that she had committed 7 sins.
Priyanka Chopra is awesome! She should get another best actress award for this film. She just makes acting look so very easy.
The film is a great combination of story telling and acting. I have not discussed everything in detail to keep you interested in watching it. It deserves to be watched and enjoyed.

Naked Ambition: An R Rated Look at an X Rated Industry (2009) Review

Movie: Naked Ambition: An R Rated Look at an X Rated Industry (2009)
Cast: Joanna Angel, Grand Maitre de Valmont and Jenna Jameson
Rating: 4/5

I stumbled upon this film while searching for something kinky to watch and while I started watching it for fun, it took me by surprise and made me hooked up for the entire duration.
The film is a documentary by a photographer who wanted to take a closer and candid look of the porn industry. His aim was to film the porn stars in their work environment without indulging into porn.

The film maker planned a photo book on the porn industry and tried to tell the story of an industry that is tabooed yet followed in every nook of the world. He highlights how hard the adult starlets work and how seriously they take the work they do. He took classy and stylistic pictures of the very porn stars who are used to loud expression and acting.

What strikes me about the film is the in depth analysis of the porn industry in terms of emotions attached to it. I was impressed by the natural setting of the pictures taken and the girl next door attitudes of the starlets.
The inclusion of Jenna Jameson in the end and the backdrop of the AVN Awards makes for an amazing movie. It was a great experience that made me look at the porn industry more seriously and with a lesser judgment.

Monday, February 28, 2011

The Story of Fuck 2010 Review

Movie: The Story of Fuck (2010)
Cast: Finlay Robertson, Joe Absolom and Norma Atallah
Rating: 2.5/5
A fun film I stumbled upon going through a list of films online was The Story of Fuck. When I put the DVD on, I was looking for a lusty, mindless comedy that just talked about pussy and booty and presented women as a commodity and nothing else. The movie, however, was much more than that.
It is a comedy that revolves around a music promoter who is having a rough time of it and nothing seems to be going right for him. His rival in the music company is a pain in his ass and he desperately wants to get back at him.
Lewis (Finlay Roberston) gets his chance when he sees a group of losers who think of themselves as rock 'n rollers. When his new intern builds a hoax hype for a band called "Fuck" and his rival Gilbert signs that band for millions, Lewis just has to make the losers he found to agree to be members of Fuck and when they fuck up, Gilbert is fucked.
The cast has acted well with some funny dialogue. It certainly is by no means a bore, and one does enjoy it. The downside is that the film lacks depth and the script is patchy. All in all, it is a different film, but nothing too exotic.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Let Me In 2010 Review

Article first published as Review: Let Me In ( 2010) on Technorati.

Movie: Let Me In (2010) on DVD/Blu-Ray
Cast: Kodi Smit-McPhee, Chloe Moretz and Richard Jenkins
Rating: 4/5

One of the best remakes I have ever seen is the vampire tale presented in Let Me In. A remake of the Swedish film Let the Right One In (2008)Let Me In tells the story of a vampire girl who is twelve years old and has the innocence of a child.

She, however, can only survive on fresh blood and turns into a horrible monster as she smells or sees blood near by. This is a story of a vampire who befriends a human boy and discovers a streak of humanity in her savageness.
It is a story of a lone boy who finds humans to be more savage than a vampire in their way of discrimination and abuse. This is a love story of two twelve-year-olds with extremely contrasting natures, yet strikingly similar loneliness.
Abby (Chloe Moritz) is a vampire who has been twelve for hundreds of years. She moves into a new neighborhood in the house next to Owen (Kodi Smit), a troubled and bullied naive boy who is pushed around by his fellows at the school. They hesitantly become friends and a story that has many beautiful contrasts — coldness vs. warmth, chaos vs. peace, guilt vs. innocence, darkness vs. delicacy, and despair vs. hope — follows. To say more about the film would give away a lot, and so I am all hush hush!
Chloe and Kodi have acted brilliantly and are perhaps the best child artists in Hollywood. I honestly believe that Let Me In is one of the greatest American remakes of all time.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Patiala House (2011) Review

Movie: Patiala House
Cast: Akshay Kumar, Anushka Sharma, Rishi Kapoor, Dimple Kapadia, Hard Kaur
Rating: 3.5/5

Cricket Junoon is running wild the world over. India and Pakistan are two countries that eat, drink and breathe cricket and with the Cricket World Cup 2011 being hosted by India, for Sri Lanka and Bangladesh the heat is on as far as cricket craze is concerned.
Amongst the excitement of the mega event of cricket comes a film that celebrates cricket and glorifies its charm and peoples' love for it. It is a film that shows the importance of family, the passion for cricket and a man's endeavor to live his life-long dream.
Parghat Singh Kahlon aka Gattu (Akshay Kumar) belongs to a cricket crazy Sikh family, the Patiala House, who had moved to England years ago. His father Gurtej Kahlon (Rishi Kapoor) is a cricket fanatic but also harbors great hatred for Englishmen following his elder brother's murder decades ago on the basis of racism. When Gattu gets selected for the English line-up in his teens his father stops him from playing saying that he would die if his son plays for the Goras (English). Gattu buries his dream in obedience of his father setting an example for the others to follow. No one in Patiala House could dare to even dream against Gurtej Kahlon and if they even spoke up they were asked to follow Gattu's footsteps. Gattu was hated by all and no one saw his frustration and sacrifice.
When the English team faces a lack of a genuine fast bowler for the upcoming T-20 Championships, they consider Gattu on the recommendation of one of the selectors Mr. Bedi. Gattu at 34 is still quick and accurate and forced by the members of Patiala House he accepts a place in the English team. Will Gattu play for England? Will he be successful? Will the family be able to hide Gattu's selection and the fact that he is playing for England fron Gurtej Kahlon? Will Gurtej accept his son as England's fast bowler? Will the Patiala House be free to dream and fulfill their dreams? You have to watch the movie to get answers for these questions. I would recommend all cricket fans to go see it.
Akshay Kumar has acted well and Rishi Kapoor has given a memorable performance as well. Anushka Sharma is charming and refreshing. Her great talent and awesome body makes for a delightful view. She surely is the next big thing in Bollywood.

Monday, February 14, 2011

The Resident (2011) Review

Article first published as Review: The Resident (2011) on Technorati.

Movie: The Resident (2011)
Cast: Jeffrey Dean Morgan, Hilary Swank and Christopher Lee
Rating: 3.5/5
Many horror flicks come an go and leave no mark on your memory. The Resident is an exception in this regard. It is an unconventional scary film in the sense that unlike Paranormal Activity 2  it does not rely on any supernatural phenomenon to create creepiness and horror.
Although many films are based on human disorders and psychotic anomalies, The Resident is still unique in its treatment of the subject where intimacy, love, sex and obsession are all given equal weight-age.
It is a wonderfully presented film about how you can never be sure of who is monitoring your daily routine at what time with what intentions. It also addresses the fact that many sweet gestures can be interpreted in undesirable ways by seemingly sane people causing them to react insanely and dangerously.
Dr. Juliet Dermer (Hilary Swank) moves to a new apartment and after some days feels that she is not alone in the place. She frequently misses the wakeup alarm and feels that some external influence is causing her to oversleep. She finally finds out that her landlord Max(Jeffrey Dean Morgan) has harbored a passionate and raging obsession for her.
The best feature of the film is its presentation of sexual desires, lust and want. The cinematic presentation of Swank's curves and features is sensual to say the least. The translation of both Juliet's and Max's frustrations is immaculate, where Juliet is shown masturbating in the tub and max is shown perving on her naked body through a peeping hole.
Although I don't consider Hillary Swank (who has also co-produced the film) as a particularly attractive woman I must admit that she has looked impressive without clothes. Her full figured body gives a good explanation of Max's perversion and attraction. She has acted very well as the heart-broken, frustrated doctor who really wants to get it on with her landlord but is confused and finally returns back to her ex.
Not giving much away about the film, I must say that it is quite scary simply because it shows how a seemingly sweet person can have a dark side to him that could be triggered by a misguided gesture.

The Next Three Days (2010) Review

Article first published as Review: The Next Three Days (2010) on Technorati.

Movie: The Next Three Days (2010)
Cast: Russell Crowe, Elizabeth Banks and Liam Neeson
Rating: 3/5

The Next Three Days is a thriller following the efforts of a husband to break his wife free from a prison. Lara Brennan is arrested for murdering her boss whom she had an argument with. She was seen leaving the scene of the crime and her fingerprints were on the murder weapon. Her husband, John would spend the next few years trying to get her released but there's no evidence that negates the evidence against her. And when the strain of being separated from her family especially her son gets to her, John decides to break her out. So he does a lot of research to find a way.
Russell Crowe plays John Brennan, a professor who has a steady life with his wife Lara (Elizabeth Banks) and kid until his wife gets arrested and sentenced for murder that she has not committed. He tries to get her out but the evidence is just too concrete and he finally decides to break her out of prison. John is inspired and guided by an escapist who had broken prison multiple time played by Liam Neeson who has nothing much to do in this cameo.
Crowe gives an honest performance as usual with convincing anxiety and strong presence. He fits the role with his everyday persona, a bulky presence and an unassuming personality.
The movie has little to write home about in terms of novelty and is shallow apart from Crowe's acting. The monotony of the script and the lack of supporting cast and characters makes it a dull and unexciting film to watch. With films like Inception and The Fighter  you can easily pass it by, but if you have nothing better to do, Russell Crowe is worth a watch any day of the week.