Zero Dark Thirty hits theaters in limited release tomorrow riding a wave of critical buzz but also controversy. Having had the opportunity to attend a preview screening early last month by the invitation of Sony Pictures, I can understand why both the hype and concern would crop up. The film opens with 20 minutes of the intense and persistent torture of a prisoner by CIA operatives that had me noting the duration of these scenes when they finally ended.
A fascinating thought just came to my head. And it was from That 70s Show.
Remember that fun little show? They live in this small little town called Point Place in Wisconsin. There are these group of teenagers, Eric Forman, Steven Hyde, Michael Kelso, Donna Pinciotti, Jackie Bruckhart and of course, the foreign exchange student from the country we never get to know all through the eight seasons of the show, Fez (come to think of it, we never even get to know Fez’s actual name.)
This series kickstarted many a career of the current lot of Hollywood bigwigs. Ashton Kutcher, Mila Kunis, and even Topher Grace. Kutcher and Grace had even quit the show a season before the entire series packed up (at the turn of the decade in the storyline) as they were keen to carry forward their careers outside the franchise.
Now, the character that came to mind all of a sudden was that of Steven Hyde. Played by Danny Masterson, Hyde is a rebel, a conspiracy seeker, an out and out anti-establishment guy. He is the Led Zeppelin sniffing, dirt hugging, violent crime seeker.
Hyde’s progress into the being he is, is not completely without reason according to the character growth. Steven Hyde has the world’s craziest parents, his father first bailing on him and then his mother taking off a few years down the line. An abandoned Hyde is adopted by the Formans and he lives with them as Eric’s adopted brother.
And then in Season 3 Episode 3 (“Hyde’s Father”), we see the return of Hyde’s father, Bud Hyde, an irresponsible father who starts living with his son once again, but isn’t much of a father that you’d expect. He leaves the meddlesome kids unsupervised, maintains a filthy house, and needs a talk down from Red Forman, Eric’s father on parenting tips.
Bud leaves town once again, as was expected surely. Hyde moves back into the Forman house, where it seems he is always welcome. Irrespective of what Red Forman kept promising of driving his foot up everyone’s asses, he was fond of Hyde, more than he was perhaps of his own son. Hyde’s life carries on.
And then comes another figure in his life. Leo Chingwake, played by Tommy Chong, the owner of the Photo Hut where Hyde gains employment. Leo is a multifaceted character. A stoned derelict, Leo’s mind is one large fog. He has no idea of anything, he remembers nothing, even though Leo later turns out to be a World War II veteran, with a Purple Heart decoration as well. No one knows Leo’s past or his present for that matter, but he always has a special corner for Hyde. Even when Kelso tries to trick Leo into selling him his Al Camino, Leo prefers giving it away to Steven for he had always intended to give the car to his son.
Finally, we come to almost the end of the series. Hyde falls down from the water tank and while sorting through his papers, Mrs. Forman finds out the name of his biological father. William Barnett appears in Season 7 Episode 2 (“Let’s Spend the Night Together”) and William Barnett turns out to be a black man. Owner of a successful records chain, William Barnett opens up to his son, setting up a record store for him, and basically working up on the time lost with his son.
So, what I was basically thinking about… Steven Hyde, without any father, is a man with many fathers, fathers who care about him, fathers who look out for him and fathers that he all quite literally cares about.
Red Forman turns out to be one of Steven’s closest advisors; William Barnett is a fun dad, a complete anti-establishment and racially colorful man—kind of amplifies Hyde’s gene pool; Bud Hyde tries to repair his mistake, but he’s in a flux about being too strict on his son considering his history; and of course, Leo, the man who only has a conscious memory of Steven Hyde, who has only Hyde in his life.
Kind of interesting how characters are deftly built sometimes, even if just for a few laughs and a few sighs. It’s a very decent and intelligent connect-the-dots by the writers. And I thought I’d pay a little tribute to it.
- Annette Bourdeau: Why Laura Prepon is the Least Successful ‘That ’70s Show’ Alum (news.moviefone.ca)
- ‘That 70s Show’ Star Arrested (abcnews.go.com)
- That ’70s Show – S01E02 Eric’s Birthday (alvinlesterdavis.wordpress.com)
I do admit it, I love it when childhood idols come back to the celluloid once again after their “retirement”. I love to see them act again, to see them give us something new to see once more. And therefore, truth be told, I was alway super excited since I saw Sridevi’s first English Vinglish theatrical promo. It was just sheer joy to see her standing there before us once again, the same Sridevi we had all grown up loving, salivating, respecting. And here she was, back before us once again.
And here, while I am admitting to all the sheer bias in my adoration from Sridevi, I am writing this article for quite different reasons altogether. As in, the movie is just more than the “return of Sridevi”, English Vinglish is a powerful social tool, cinema like the way it was always meant to be.
I know, I’m all over the place today, but my mind is racing after watching this film. Because it opens several avenues of discussions and deliberation today, with a lot of issues. But I need to bring the argument back substantially before this article starts to make any kind of sense.
Sridevi’s Sashi is a stereotypical Indian housewife — gets up first every morning, makes her own coffee, makes her mother-in-law’s tea, breakfast for the family, and then once everyone’s gone, she works through her own little business venture of making ladoos and other “snacks” as she calls it for her regular customers. Then dinner for the family, to bed and whoop, you’re back to the next day! Life seems fine for Sashi, except the constant ridicule that she also has to face from her daughter and husband over her lack of English knowledge. While Sashi is an embarrassment for the daughter, her husband lauds her for her abilities to make ladoos and good food, swearing that she was “born to make ladoos!”He means it well, but he believes in what he says.
And then one day, Sashi’s sister calls from New York. Her daughter’s to get married and everyone was invited. Sashi was the first one to go, all alone, all the way to New York, so that she could get started with all the pending marriage work. Sashi is scared. She has never been away from her children, how was she going to make it all the way to New York, United States of America, without even knowing the English language? But who cares about her fears and insecurities anyway? She’s just the wife, this was all part and parcel of what she was committed to endure. And with a crash course in English from her husband, Sashi is packed off.
America is breathtaking, America is frightening, America is a strange land, and though Sashi has the full, genuine support of her younger niece, America imposes on you slowly and with time. Till that one time, Sashi walks into a cafe in Manhattan and is absolutely pulled apart by the black waitress there for not knowing what she wanted, or more suitably, for not knowing how to speak what she wanted. Sashi is distraught, she is wrecked, she is emotionally scarred. Later, when her niece comes back from classes and joins Sashi, an emotional Sashi starts to do what she does best — hide her emotions and pretend to be in an emotional state that she isn’t. And then a bus goes by — Learn English in 4 Weeks.
English Vinglish is what happens after that, of Sashi and her quest to master the English language in just 4 weeks’ time. She has duties during the wedding, she has her classes to attend, she has to travel the entire distance from Hoboken to Manhattan, she has to manage on her own in the city she is an alien too, and she has to become more than what she had always limited herself to be. And that is when you need a childhood idol to come out of her shell and show you, and your world, why she was an icon, why she had the fan-following she did and why she will always remain to be Sridevi in our minds and hearts!
This movie just doesn’t belong to Sridevi, it is just Sridevi’s story. She stumbles all through her way in a way only she can. She is Sashi, she is Sridevi, she is everyone and anyone you want her to be. The way she mutes her frustrations, the way she hides her embarrassment, the way she pretends to have no sense of humiliation, the way her emotions get the better of her and the way in which she progresses through her English lessons, Sridevi shows each and every of the current Bollywood litter what a performance really is all about. And considering her release was quickly followed by Rani Mukerjee’s comeback Aiyyaa. Shows then, what real class is all about. It seems that she never forgot how to do anything, she’s just that natural in her ways. And the best part about her performance is the change in her set of skills. She goes out of the basic melodramatic acting which was her call of the day earlier. Today she moves away to a finely revetting performance, a performance of veiled understatement, one where she’s Sashi and not Sridevi. Spell-binding, completely. I could go on and on and on about Sridevi, and yet it will not be enough. See the movie, see her, see her performance, see how Sashi is everything that there is to watch on screen, and not Sridevi — and then you too shall applaud.
And it’s just not Sridevi that sells the movie to you. Everyone does. And I don’t just mean the supporting actors, I mean everyone. Amit Trivedi for starters, his fabulous background score, as he develops a particular English Vinglish theme for the film. The movie rarely depends on stock footage or additions, it creates something new in almost everything that it does. The songs are limited and foot-tapping, allowing for the modest tone of the film, in spite of the content rich subplot.
Sabyasachi’s saris for Sridevi need special mention in every article. The divide between her home saris and outdoor saris is so stylistically categorized, it’s not something that you’d just want to tide over. The saris are all within her middle class budget and yet they are painstakingly breathtaking. The point of costume in a world of make-belief is so wonderfully orchestrated in this film. Every character is you and me, and everything about them reeks of it.
And of course, Gauri Shinde, the person who brings this entire class act together. The women directors of Bollywood are truly special — well, if you take a similar statistical comparison with their male counterparts. They get the best out of their actors most of the times, their products are much more detailed and confined to the space they create, and they know how to handle the telling of a story. Gauri Shinde too, has created something truly spectacular. She has brought about an awareness for the general necessity for knowing how to speak and read English, and coupled it with the more individual struggle to succeed against odds. And all this from a woman’s perspective, one already with a ten-point deficit in her corner. And then, to succeed. That is where her brilliance is measured.
English Vinglish is a highly recommended movie. It made a group of rural girls from Bihar learn the language after drawing inspiration from Sashi. It definitely has something that speaks to you on the level you want it to communicate. And it has one of the finest cameos seen in recent times in the Talkies. That alone, will make up for the price of your ticket, considering you want to keep your mind absolutely armored shut during this joy ride.
Sometimes, all it takes is to put the stuff out there, irrespective of whether the other person understands a word or not. That is all English Vinglish does, and it does so remarkably.
- Ami on English Vinglish (satyamshot.wordpress.com)
- Tamil Review: ‘English Vinglish’ is an engaging film (ibnlive.in.com)
- English Vinglish : Good comeback shomeback ? (theficklelemon.wordpress.com)
- Simplicity of ‘English Vinglish’ clicked: Sridevi (Interview) (vancouverdesi.com)
- English Vinglish: Sridevi’s 10 scenes to watch out for (ibnlive.in.com)
- ‘English Vinglish’ Review: The film leaves you with a big smile on your face (ibnlive.in.com)
- ‘English Vinglish’: Aren’t we permanently colonialised? (savitahiremath.com)
- A Star Returns & A Star is Born: A Review of English Vinglish (bfilmi.com)
- “Clean English” English Vinglish: Movie Review (madaboutmoviez.com)
- She has what it takes: Sridevi’s comeback with English Vinglish has broken a stereotype, proving age is no factor for a heroine’s comeback (dailymail.co.uk)
After the first lot of the superhero movies from the Marvel factory were made into successful movies like Iron Man, starring Robert Downey Jr. as Tony Stark, or The Hulk with Edward Norton Jr., there was always this niggling thought of one day seeing the Avengers on screen. Everyone ought to have had them, particularly if you were familiar with the comic books. Slowly, the line of movies began expanding. Newer characters were being introduced in sequels—all characters from the Avengers Assemble series. Naturally, a story was being planned.
A story was planned. A movie was made. It was called the Avengers. It was one heck of a movie.
I’ll be very honest. In my mind, comic books made into film should all have been like the rebooted Christopher Nolan franchise. While more shadowy real, Nolan’s Batman series twists away from the original plot line. Again, that’s not a bad thing; it’s just that the Avengers stick to their end of the comic books and things go fine for them. (P.S. I am not pitting one movie against the other. Both are utter masterpieces.)
To cut a long story short, The Avengers play to their strong point—their characters and their storylines. And the most important point in the movie, the respect for comic book mythology.
What can I say about the characters that whoever’s reading this doesn’t know already? It was quite best summarized by Tony Stark when “threatening” Loki. “Your brother, a demigod; a super soldier, a living legend who kind of lives up to the legend; a man with breathtaking anger management issues; a couple of master assassins…” and to be fair to Stark himself, a showoff who sacrifices everything for the greater good when required. These people form comic book lore, they are legends in our imagination, heroes of creativity. And they have been personified gallantly by brave actors. Chris Evans as Captain America, Robert Downey Jr. As Iron Man, Mark Ruffalo as the Hulk, Chris Hemsworth as Thor, Scarlett Johansson as Natasha Romanoff and Jeremy Renner as Hawkeye. Each one of them live their parts and allows the movie to just come alive. Ruffalo and Stark in particular, who share quite a bit of screen time together, were absolutely astonishing. Think about it, these characters have all been around for nearly half a century now and it’s an extremely interesting mesh that Joss Whedon stirs up this time around.
The Chitauri storyline, coupled with Loki bringing the war to Earth as a super-villain was equally enjoyable. Standard comic book fare, keeps you hooked throughout just by the sheer magnanimity of the imagination. The Avengers movie could very well be just a comic book (not like the comic book that came out after the movie based on the movie), and it’s thoroughly entertaining, filled with all the hooyahs and the moral codes that one can generally associate with comic books.
However, it was the perfect regard to comic book mythology that really struck a chord deep down in my heart. Every superhero is unique in the Marvel Universe, and everyone requires to be treated with due respect. For instance, right at the very beginning when the Avengers initiative begins, Romanoff goes to call in Dr. Banner, Agent Phil Coulson goes to summon Stark… But to ask Captain America to lead the project, Commander Nick Fury goes himself. That is respect to the legendary super soldier, the first superhero in the Marvel Universe (storyline wise). Then of course, when the Avengers are finally in the eye of the storm, battling to save Manhattan, and each one of them is ready to fight the war brought to their planet by the Chitauri, Iron Man clearly declares, “Call it, Captain!” Things like these make the Avengers work, and work by miles. When a movie is being made from a comic book, it is very necessary to keep the tradition and mythograph of the comic book tradition intact. And Joss Whedon has paid tribute to the rich heritage, the principal reason why we do have movies made to these immortal comic books to begin with. My personal favorite? Captain America turning to the Hulk and saying, “And Hulk… Smash!”
You can see that the director loves the comic books, that he is a fan, that he goes the extra mile to protect the cloud bubble created around these characters since time immemorial now. In a multi-charactered movie, he leaves enough individual space around each characters, allowing them to bring more to the table. He sticks to the “save the earth” themes of comic books, but he makes the story worth seeing, worth listening to, he makes the story exactly the way in which the audience would have loved it.
Overall, I loved the movie, every aspect of it. I sincerely hope Marvel carries this forward, for another movie and even then, Joss Whedon should helm this unique ship, because only he knows how to preserve the Marvel Universe.
- Stan Lee Reveals His Favorite DC Superhero (geektyrant.com)
- Whedon to write and direct Avengers 2 (bigpondnews.com)
- The Avengers Gag Reel Surfaces on YouTube (mashable.com)
- Joss Whedon Will Write And Direct ‘Avengers 2′ (splashpage.mtv.com)
- The Avengers (2012) (canadiancinephile.com)
- Joss Whedon Talks Designing the Helicarrier in Exclusive Featurette from THE AVENGERS Blu-ray (collider.com)
- A history of Marvel heroes in film (lfpress.com)
- Avengers – Avengers 2 Confirmed For May 2015 Release (contactmusic.com)
- Stan Lee Explains Which Marvel Character Deserves A Movie And More (splashpage.mtv.com)
Hum Tum‘s success lay in the fact that it had Saif Ali Khan in the lead. This role was practically written by him, by his very mannerisms in all his earlier comedies…and more importantly, it had opened up an entire new form of comedy in Bollywood. We had moved far, far ahead from the random slapstick fare that earlier constituted comedy. Saif Ali Khan, Boman Irani…these were actors who changed a generic notion. It greatly benefitted the rom-com genre, and movies started being made for the cineplex’s alone, and a new dynamic was added to Indian cinema.
Hum Tum was followed with some sincere performances in quite some many movies that came after it. The likes of Parineeta and Salam Namaste kept Saif’s flags flying at full mast. He was quite the sensation, he swung into the top bracket at once. He had set a market for himself and as of that point in time (or for that matter, even today) there was no one to take the crown away from him.
Every actor would love to be in such a position. It guarantees the next quite some many Fridays. You have your “peeps” to watch your back. And then Saif went and did something very, very different from what we have usually seen him do. Moving far, far away from the usual, came Saif Ali Khan in an English language edgy thriller — Being Cyrus.
Being Cyrus was different for so many different reasons. It was like the Renaissance of English language films in India. It was no longer restricted to a labeled set of actors, it was now open to all. Saif Ali Khan had chosen English as a language to ‘do‘ some serious cinema, while the rest of Bollywood kept running to Kolkata to star in the next Rituparno Ghosh movie to mark their debut into “serious cinema”. But English was different, because English went across all the major cities of the country. Sure, compared to the grand box office, this was figure is minuscule…but then these movies are shot without luxuries — recovery shouldn’t be such a pain in the ass when the multiplexes will vouch for you. And bring in a Saif, open up an entire new market of audiences exposed multifariously to world cinema.
Being Cyrus bridged a narrowing gap effectively. Two parallel tracks of Indian cinema were finally starting to merge. No longer was Hyderabad Blues a niche audience film. English dialogues started melting into the screenplays, without having a Hindi audio subtitle (like in Border… “Can I come in Sir? Kya main andhar aasakta hoon?” Like come on, choose one language!).
And Saif Ali Khan owned it. All the way. He was cool, he was suave, he was also apparently in the same time zone when Ek Hasina Thi started to pick up on home video. Saif had heralded a new segment to cinema.
And then he signed on for a movie, when everyone thought that the success had made him irrational, that it had gone to his head. “Saif Jokes” re-emerged, his voice modulations were re-enacted in every college canteen.
Saif broke down all his critics. He crushed them into pieces.
(To be continued…)
There has seldom been perhaps a more dramatic change than this. At least I can’t think of any.
We first saw glimpses of the future in 2002 or so, with Dil Chahta Hain. Till then we wouldn’t care much if Saif Ali Khan was in a film or not. He was never the center of attention, he was never even a byproduct of attention. He was made fun of because of the way he spoke, he was made fun of because we all thought he looked like a girl, and we would laugh at his acting skills for completely different reasons.
What started out with Parampara, way back God knows when (1992 or something maybe) was always a joke. The only little bursts of glory Saif may have achieved was because of Main Khiladi Tu Anari and the “Ole Ole” song from Yeh Dillagi. But those were far and few in number, and seriously could not count for anything.
He tried everything. Literally everything. And nothing clicked. I even checked somewhere that he was in a movie called Surakshaa, where he was apparently in double role, playing the roles of Amar and Prince Vijay. As I said, everything.
He even tried taking the soft core negative route with movies like Kya Kehna, but then again, zilch. Also under the hammer here is Bollywood’s Fargo lift, Love Ke Liye Kuchh Bhi Karega… that was far gone!
And then came 2002, approximately ten years since his first film, and Saif was cast in the role of Sameer in Farhan Akhtar‘s Dil Chahta Hain. If I remember correctly, that was also the year in which Lagaan released and there was this mad frenzy around the movie, what with all the Oscar nod and all. And yet this movie stood out. This movie was equally appreciated, lamented that it released in the same year as Lagaan.
And while discussing Dil Chahta Hain, the movie can be left for another article, the acting by the three protagonists came under the limelight. And Saif was suddenly all we could think of suddenly! He was the funny one, the one everyone was forced to love. He was the ultimate friend, the one who you could always count upon and the one who always made you laugh.
And then came dessert… Kal Ho Na Ho. The sheer success of this movie was reverberating on every youth’s lips (at least). They knew the banter between Saif and Shah Rukh Khan to the T. They were enacting the “Are you Muhammad Ali?” scene by rote. Saif was big, Saif was the one you knew you’d get your money’s worth on.
And with it came a minor judgement call on his career — the improbability of ever delivering a solo hit at the box office. He was always the guy you never took seriously. How could he pull the entire show by himself? He’d need someone to support him through and through. And after the respected, but denied performance in LOC, came the solo starrer after Kal Ho Na Ho. Ek Hasina Thi opened well, but tanked by the second week. There were other movies to be seen, like Khakee.
Ek Hasina Thi now enjoys a kind of cult status amongst cinephiles.
But he sealed it in his next release itself. Hum Tum, from the Yashraj banner did the same old comedy, only more modernized to suit current sensibilities. Multiplexes gave it all the boost it needed, Hum Tum was a mission accomplished. Right till the point he got his first National Award for the movie (and Filmfare nominated and awarded him the Best Comedian Award [????]) Interestingly, both Awards that year were a joke… but then we digress.
After Hum Tum, everything changed…
(To be continued…)
I have something to add to the post I uploaded a couple of posts back, where I wrote extensively about the expectations and recoveries from this film. I need to speak once more about Dr. Moriarty (quite till the point till I am obsessed between watching the Holmes–Moriarty face-off) and I need to talk about the actor playing the part.
As I have made quite clear already, Jared Harris is indeed quite exceptional and matches Holmes brilliantly at every step, there is one thing that must say, could have been done better. On second thoughts now, I believe that Brad Pitt could have just been a better choice. Because Jared Harris is good, but he doesn’t match up to the celebrity status of Robert Downey Jr., the man who plays Sherlock Holmes. However, Brad Pitt would have. And that would have been the more ideal face-off. Pity it was not to be so, and yes, giving true credit to Jared Harris for doing the unthinkable… thought I’d just put down the reassessment of my own thoughts though once.
Guy Ritchie has actually been successful in bringing quality literature down through the road of pulp fiction. And I guess the question will still be — is that a good thing or bad? The question, as always, is which way we intend to look down the system of mayhem. The answers, as always too, will always remain two fold.
The first, and most obvious anomaly, is the shriek of the purists against an act that cannot be tagged as more blasphemous. Sherlock Holmes, the brooding, sombre, stiff and charismatic private eye, the generic name of an entire genre over nationalities and languages, completely debased by a portrayal of an aggressive, slapstick, loud and eccentric buffoon on screen — yes, there is reason enough to lament.
However, like I mentioned earlier, there can be found a method of looking through the other end of the looking glass, and giving a more sincere appraisal of the fact at hand. And all I suggest in this matter, is to look at the entire Holmes–Watson build up in the terms of the current decade, the present social structure, again wrapped in the scoffer’s terms of “base”, the “Bro Code“. Of that, Sherlock Holmes and the Game of Shadows, is flawless.
When I did hear that the villain will be coming to light in the sequel to Guy Ritchie’s Sherlock Holmes movie of 2009, I did believe that the director was attempting to be a tad bit ambitious. Knowing by what had already been shown to us, I wasn’t sure how this classic battle of wits and stratagems would be dealt with by the director. I knew that the two protagonists were going to come face to face more sooner than expected, that I respect as the flaw of the celluloid — she has her limitations — but then how deep was the impact going to be on the principal source?
Now that I have seen it, I can breathe a sigh of relief. For with this movie I was not going to dissect the stylistic misinterpretation of the original, but rather work within than network to find a more intrinsic value that a sequel is always intended to bring. And I must say once again, I was indeed quite satisfied.
So how does it feel to see a living breathing interpretation of Doctor Moriarty, clearly the most charismatic and ruthless of villains ever created, one that may still be quite unsurpassed (because mental deviousness cloaked in ordinary superiority is a something that cannot be created with general ease). When the rumor mills were buzz with Brad Pitt perhaps gearing up to take that mantle, excitement was strife I am sure. I did question myself once on the subject when I first saw the conversation between Holmes and the Doctor. But then I was silenced quite beautifully by Jared Harris, a wonderfully composed and vibrant Dr. Moriarty. And I must also confess with all my heart, Jared Harris may just have been able to do a much better job than perhaps Brad Pitt could ever have done. The challenges to Holmes’ intuition and levels of deduction were masterfully choreographed through the script, lending their intellectual skirmishes a more raw vigor. No, Dr. Moriarty was well-developed, and you could make that out even more perfectly in the fist fight that culminated the climax. He was Holmes, perhaps slightly better or slightly worse, but he was one who could match up in wits, in intellectual accumen, not just physically.
And where does that leave us then? Of course, with Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson, the eternal duo and also one of the first brothers I presume. The novels by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle certainly did establish the fond respect and adoration that both Holmes and Watson had for each other, but the principal focus has always been the case of intrigue on hand. However, the movie spelt it out, albeit in a bit too loud a method. The strong bond, the protective love that Holmes has always had for Watson was displayed only too categorically in the film — how Holmes cannot save the woman he loves and has to bury her last physical memory, but he goes out of his way, absurdly too, to save Dr. Watson‘s newly-wed wife, how he does not relish the idea of parting ways with the good doctor, but yet he personally makes sure that he reaches the alter on time. What this movie has done, more than any other, is perhaps cement till eternity the chords of affection between Holmes and Watson — and truth be told, it didn’t hurt to be spelt right across our faces.
In The Game of Shadows, Robert Downey Jr. does show more potent signs of the Sherlock Holmes charisma, quite like in the scene at the opera (I am not saying he was perfect, I am just defending that he was closer this time to the real thing), but the only thing that he can never do anything about in getting into the skin is his appearance. He can play it differently, but it was have meant a lot more if he had actually looked the part. That is somewhere, I believe, Guy Ritchie has completely failed when he decided to cast Downey in this franchise. I don’t know, what if it were Johnny Depp instead of Downey? I’d put my money on that (girls should love me).
Jude Law sinks his teeth into being Dr. Watson effortlessly once again. He, like I was saying in the case of Robert Downey Jr., looks the part — and that’s half the battle won right there at the beginning. His actions this time were more voluntary, something that even made the viewers warm up to Dr. Watson perhaps… Overall, he was aces.
Over all, Sherlock Holmes and the Game of Shadows was a way more toned down interpretation of the original, and a lot more fun at the same time.
Easily a three-and-a-half starrer.
- [HeroPress] DVD Of The Week: Sherlock Holmes – A Game Of Shadows (2011) (heropress.net)
- Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows (canadiancinephile.com)
- SHERLOCK HOLMES: A GAME OF SHADOWS DVD/BLU-RAY Details (UK/R2) (thepeoplesmovies.com)
- ‘Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows’ DVD Review (houseofgeekery.com)
- Sherlock Holmes is most portrayed literary character in TV and film (dailymail.co.uk)
- Sherlock Holmes – A Game of Shadows (afilmlog.wordpress.com)
- Sherlock Holmes And Dr. Watson On Screen – Part 1: Intro and comparison between the BBC’s Sherlock series and Guy Ritchie’s movie series (cinesprit.wordpress.com)
The Indian film industry is a cruel place to be in. Mostly because of the illiterati that we call “producers” and also because one section of the audience will always be compelled to sit outside in the light, because reel time belongs to the money churner alone. No, a break even won’t do — rich people need to be richer!
Read the entire article at www.ibnlive.com
To be very honest, I never really understood what the entire hullaballoo was about 500 Days of Summer. As in the movie was a visual spectacle, with the actors doing all that they possibly could, but that beyond, even for a pop-fic movie, I couldn’t really get the pulse. My bad, I guessed!
And therefore, when Ekk Main Aur Ekk Tu released and there was pressure from all quarters to go and see it, I was like quoting Plato all through — twice removed, twice removed.
But I was contracting for no real reason. And I knew that. So I decided to see it. I haven’t been much in my car, therefore I have really no idea about which song these days is from which film. So I must declare right at the beginning that when I saw Amit Trivedi’s name as the music man for the film, I was reasonably excited. And neither he, nor did the movie let me down even for one bit.
Sure, it did get to its usual productivity stagnation phase, but thankfully it was towards the end and did not last for a long time. That I must say is something that they played out much better than you get to see in the usual Hindi films of the same genre. Sure, here too we had to go into sad depressive song (yes, no plural) and all that fore lone looks took place from all angles, but I am just saying that now since I was to get over with the ugly part of this piece. And from this point onwards, we are all good to go.
And in which case, I must need mention whether this movie is different from 500 Days of Summer at all, or is it just another blatant Bollywood language change copy… Yes, and no. Doesn’t make sense? Yes, it does…
For the first time, Bollywood robbed the style content from a Hollywood movie and while retaining the flavor of the west they corroborated everything with their own factory settings. And they made a swell entertaining film. And I must also mention that in all this commotion they did not break back into their usual stereotypical plots at any point. In short, with Ekk Main Aur Ekk Tu, Bollywood tried to experiment from within their boundaries. And I guess that is exactly what worked for the movie.
Imraan Khan is slowly started to find his groove in different kinds of movies that he takes his time in doing. Variation without substance is a horribly wrong attempt to take, and this he must have learnt from attempting Kidnap and Luck. But he finally realized that he has an extremely urban face and social context and therefore, breaking into unbelievable roles would never work for him. Ergo, Delhi Belly and now Ekk Main Aur Ekk Tu.
Kareena Kapoor seems to have finally shed ambitions for a size zero or whatever that crap was, and now she has finally put on some much needed weight. RESULT: She has never looked more desirable, more ravishing, in a look that is surely going to go with her for life now. She has never looked prettier, and I must perhaps also add, that she has never acted better. Kareena too seems to have finally found her place in the world of celluloid. You fall in love with her character, not with Kareena, who you almost kind of forget while watching this movie. Its called Good Acting.
Over all, I must admit that this was one hell of a joy ride and thankfully, there is a serious attempt to tailor make films for the postcolonial subaltern cineplex going audience. We have been on twin sharing for quite some time, and its not our fault if our historiographies and social idealism force us to a more occidental mindset. We are more at home with Ekk Main Aur Ekk Tu, and we thank Dharma Productions for helping us out.
Watch Ekk Main Aur Ekk Tu for the sheer fun of it. You won’t regret the time spent.
- Kareena Kapoor unveils ‘Bollywood Walk of Fame’ (digitalspy.co.uk)
- Ek Main Aur Ekk Tu Movie Review : What Happened in Vegas…Gets Resolved in Mumbai! (madaboutmoviez.com)
- What Happened in Vegas…Gets Resolved in Mumbai! (madaboutmoviez.com)
- Will Imran-Kareena chemistry work at the BO? (ibnlive.in.com)