Movie mania

Posted by Anantha | Posted in , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Posted on Friday, February 20, 2009


Im on a movie watching spree like never before. To be precise I have watched 13 movies in last 1 month!! I know there are movie maniacs out there who watch a movie every day, but 13 in 30 days is still a whopping number for me. I am impatient to write a review/comment on each one of them in separate posts, though some of them deserve at least a post on them.

So I here I write few lines about those movies.

Slumdog Millionaire
Dir: Danny Boyle
Cast: Dev Patel, Freida Pinto
Much has been written and discussed about this movie. Keeping aside the flaws; it is a very good entertainer. Kudos to Simon Beaufoy for an excellent adaptation of the novel by Vikas Swarup. I read the book,
Q and A too which is not as good as the movie.
The disgusting cesspit scene of the movie tops my list of 'Most disgusting scenes ever in cinema'. Guess the 2nd and 3rd in the list, they are from the movie,
Trainspotting again by Danny Boyle!! 2nd best being a stupored lead actor defecating on the bed in his GF's house, 3rd being Ewan McGregor diving in to the commode of the filthiest toilet of Scotland. But, however disgusting the scenes might be, I still love Danny Boyle's movies! :)

Lake House
Dir: Alejandro Agresti
Cast: Sandra Bullock, Keanu Reeves
Watched it after Ethapay reco'd this to me. A nice romantic story with a mysterious time difference of 2 years that separates the lead actors. Liked it in parts. Watchable for the very idea of the screenplay.

Raaz – The mystery continues
Dir: Mohit Suri
Cast: Emraan Hashmi, Kangana Ranaut, Adhyayan Suman
I watched this in theatre. Quite gripping and scary too in places.

Salaam Bombay!
Dir: Mira Nair
I had not commented when people said Salaam Bombay is the best portrayal of Indian slums and a better movie than Slumdog. Watched it just for the sake of it. Believe me, I could not tolerate the movie for more than 45 minutes from its beginning. I know the lead actors are kids from slums, but I simply could not feel empathy for the characters who just can not emote a single scene well. It just does not bother me when a character in the movie is dying in boiling oil in hell with an eternal wooden expression on their face. No special accolades for then not so established actors like Nana Patekar, Irfan Khan and Raghvir Yadav too.

It might be considered a good documentary in my opinion. IMHO, Slumdog is a way better movie, technically, screenplay wise, direction wise, cast wise and background score wise. I do not wanna praise Salaam Bombay just because Mira Nair is Indian.

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Before the rains
Dir: Santosh Sivan
Cast: Linus Roache, Rahul Bose, Nandita Das
This is an Indo-British collaboration. I am not sure whether this movie got released in India or not. Picked this one up only because of Santhosh Sivan and the movie did not disappoint me at all. The movie is 'painted' on the canvas of Kerala by Sivan. Neat performances by all the lead actors and an awesome handling of the subject by Sivan. Watch it. 

Dir: Darren Aronofsky
Cast: Mickey Rourke, Marisa Tomei
This is one of the best movies I have seen in recent times. Thanks to Ashwin for giving me the DVD. I dint know who
Mickey Rourke was until I saw this movie and now he is there right on top of my favourite actors list. I simply loved his performance in this movie. I hope he wins Best Actor award in this year's Oscars (Sean Penn for Milk will be a strong contender too).

The story of Wrestler is about Randy 'The Ram' Robinson, a wrestler in the descent of his glorious years in the ring. He is old now, his ageing body will no more bear steroids and sustain on pain killers, he has a daughter who lives apart and hates him immensely and he does not know any thing but wrestling for his livelihood. He often visits a strip club and shares his thoughts and emotionally connects to a middle aged stripper named Casidy (Marisa Tomei). Casidy is no more a young and voluptuous stripper in the club, her skin is sagging, and teenage boys humiliate her when she offers a lapdance. Once, after a brutal fight in the ring, Randy collapses in the locker room of heavy heart attack. Undergoes a bye pass surgery and is advised by doctor not to continue wrestling at the stake of his life.

The portrayal of these miserable souls, the emotions they undergo and the choices they make in their lives make the movie immensely adorable. Don't miss this one.

Luck by Chance
Dir: Zoya Akhtar
Cast: Farhan Akhtar, Konkona Sen Sharma and a whole lot of cameos by Bollywood biggies
A satirical take on clichéd Bollywood, protagonists' struggle to stardom and a believable role the luck plays in shaping the protagonist's future. The self clowning acts by many cameos are surprisingly wonderful. A must-add DVD to the personal collection.

Dir: Anurag Kashyap
Cast: Abhay Deol, Kalki Koechlin, Mahi Gill
A bold and modern take on Devdas in quintessential Anurag Kashyap style.

I bet this is going to be the only movie that stands apart from rest of all the Devdas versions in various languages. An excellent act by Abhay Deol and new comer Mahi Gill. Though Kalki Koechlin suits well for the role of Chanda, a better rendition could have been possible by any other capable actor. Thank God Anurag Kashyap did not make it as cryptic as
No Smoking, still Dev.D is abstract enough in places. I wanna watch it again to connect the dots that are left over in my mind.

Curious case of Benjamin button
Sorry to say I was not impressed. Movie was not engaging for me.

7 pounds
Dir: Gabriele Muccino
Great performance by Will Smith, a well made movie. But, not as good as The pursuit of..

9 ½ weeks
Dir: Adrian Lyne
Cast: Mickey Rourke, Kim Bassinger
The movie is based on the erotic escapades of Mickey Rourke and Kim Bassinger in a duration of 9 ½ weeks. Watch it to see a charming and young Mickey Rourke (unlike in Wrestler) and hawwttt Kim Bassinger.

Dir: Isabel Coixet
Cast: Ben Kingsley, Penelope Cruze
I picked this to see 'more of' my favorite actress Penelope Cruze. Ben Kingsley is charismatic as ever. This movie would not have been so special without these two actors.

Old Boy
Dir: Park Chan-wook
Cast: Choi Min-sik, Yu Ji-tae
Thanks to Ashwin again for giving me the DVD. This is a South Korean movie released in 2003.
I finished watching this movie at 2:15 AM last night. Could not bate my eye lids till 3 AM! This movie leaves you stirred, shocked and amazed! This is the 2nd of the
Vengeance Trilogy by the director Park Chan-wook. Im dying to watch the 1st and the 3rd part too, search for the DVDs in on.

Oh btw, Zinda starring Sanjay Dutt and John Abraham is based on this movie. Seeing the violence, brutal revenge plot of the original I am convinced Zinda would be a much softer version of Old Boy to fit in the frame of Bollywood, but I wanna watch it for the mere comparison's sake.