Popular Posts

Friday, September 28, 2012

Happy B'Day, Ron!

Ranbir Kapoor celebrates his birthday today.....

Ranbir is not just Bollywood's young turk, he is also one of the very best.

From doing experimental films to establishing a niche for himself, he has had success, getting his turf well assessed and staying focused with his priorities, not that he can skip being tabloid fodder altogether for liaisons of the heart.

And the sweet success of Barfi! is making him bask in glory, for sure.

Pics courtesy: Lenovo, Pepsi and Google Images.

Thursday, September 27, 2012


Goats is unusual, quirky, bizarre and yet very much a warm-hearted treat. It is a film that I happened to watch without having known about the film in advance. I was not too excited by the cast either, not when I saw the poster splashed on the cover of the DVD that I borrowed from the library. As the movie began, right from the animation accompanying the title card, I was hooked.

I could not believe my eyes watching David Dachovny as the Goat Man! David's renown for being the lead in X-Files far exceeds his fame as an actor of substance his act in Full Frontal notwithstanding. He has given quite a career defining performance in this film, I must say. The film also has such fine actors as Vera Farmiga, Ty Burrell, Keri Russell, Justin Kirk and Dakota Johnson. And, of course, there is the young and talented Graham Phillips, who plays Ellis, the Arizona teenager whose coming-of-age story Goats is.

The film is based on the book by Mark Poirier, who has also penned the screenplay. Woody Jackson and Jason Schwartzman have composed the music for the film, while Wyatt Troll has done the cinematography.

The film might not have captured really any exceptional ground, but for someone who has experienced incredible identity crises of one's own, my own backdrop of inconsistencies being a valid reference point, the film is nothing short of a revelation. Disturbed virtues can be so widely dissimilar and yet so very alike in terms of identifiability. Ellis, the protagonist of the film, journeys through the oddities that comprise his life and discovers longing, loyalty, camaraderie, clarity and pragmatism in his own way.

Friday, September 14, 2012

'Barfi!' - a heart-stealer!

BARFI! is the latest cinematic offering from Anurag Basu.
As a filmmaker, Anurag has already proven his worth with some entertaining and thoroughly engaging feature films, and even with some interesting work on television. But this one sets him apart in many ways. He has hardly compromised with his creative vision, despite the film having an A-list star-cast and a big studio-backing. 

The film tells an endearing story. Two of the protagonists - including the eponymous one - are differently-abled (challenged, according to the so-called politically incorrect) and yet the film has happened to strike just the right chords, it has hit the right notes at the box-office too. The film has been called a mini-masterpiece by some, while some have lauded it as the most broad-based emotionally overwhelming film made in recent times. 

Anurag Basu has told the tale with some amount of freshness and with a lot of passion and optimism. Ranbir Kapoor in the title role (Murphy, which in the flawed utterance becomes Barfi!), as a deaf-mute guy, oozes cherubic warmth and divine energy, and Priyanka Chopra, as the autistic girl, Jhilmil, has her own moments of brilliance. There is also the other important character, Shruti (played by Illeana D'Cruz, making her Hindi film debut), that stands out in a refreshingly muted way; ironically it is she who threads the narrative with a voice-over that breezes all over with back-and-forth forays (flashbacks and 'super' flashbacks!). 
The viewers would love the ride. I loved it, honestly. I chuckled, smiled, laughed, sobbed and relished the magical moments that played out on the big screen. I cheered for Barfi, I delighted in his exploits, I surrendered to the simplistic charm and innocence in the synthetic recreation of the Seventies.

I would excuse Basu the digressions and the indulgences (which has a distinctive flavor of the Tamil/Telugu films) and also the show-offish excesses. They are but minor flaws. What I took home was the abundance of love and tenderness and sensitive portrayals, and some meaty moments packed in minuscule segments. The film celebrates life, love, and hope.
In one of the promotionals for the film, the cast members put it brilliantly, that a viewer would take from this life-affirming film the kind of flavor that essentially defines him/her and the kind of flavor that he/she would like to permeate in his/her life. 
Barfi, the character, is a heart-stealer, and so is the film.

Tuesday, September 04, 2012

Perfectly imperfect

Nothing's pre-written.
Nothing's to be re-written.
Hence, we must write carefully, all the more.
We are required to live the best.
As best as we can, and leave the rest.
Leave the rest to the unchangeable, irreversible destiny.
It's a perfectly imperfect world after all.