Bajrangi Bhaijan is what comes out when the script of “Dabang” or “Wanted” go to Haridwar and takes a dip in the holy river of Ganges.
What comes to your mind first when you think of a Salman Khan movie? Action? Some shirtless visuals accentuating Salman Khan’s brazen body? Preposterous dance moves subtly choreographed for a dance-challenged person? Philosophical dialogues delivered by a quirky policeman? Well, if you are expecting something along these lines, you are wrong. Though the title of the movie is misleading, the movie is more “Bajrangi” than “Bhaijaan”.
Bajrangi Bhaijan introduces to us, Bajrangi, a God-fearing man who lives by the law and is an ardent worshipper of Lord Hanuman. Bajrangi risks his own life, religion and principles on a journey to reunite a 7- year- old Pakistani citizen “Shahida” who gets separated from her mother while on a journey to a famous “Dargah” in India. Though the essence of the story revolves around the hackneyed Indo-Pak border tension, the orbiting story around this central nucleus is very different and one of a kind. It vacillates somewhere between PK and LOC Kargil and wins millions of hearts along its path. The story neither shows the facades of tempest nor seems mawkish to the audience. It is an adequately weaved storyline of action, love, religion and the whole motive of the story- a hovering white flag of peace between India and Pakistan.
Kudos to Kabir Khan for having cast a powerful duo of Salman Khan as “Bajrangi” and Harshali Malhotra as “Shahida” alias “Munni”. This 7- year- old tiny little kid speaks through her eyes, her apple pink cheeks and an endearing smile which enswathed her face throughout the movie. Her screen presence is indomitable, her acting skills are terribly remarkable and her innocence is just breath-taking. Salman Khan- a versatile actor who can deliver a hit in any genre shakes under the prodigious performances of Harshali and Nawazuddin Siddiqui. Nawazuddin Siddiqui who plays the role of an “apparent” journalist, is an embodiment of theatrical skill and art. In short he literally lives the character. Kareena Kapoor hardly has any role here but makes her presence felt and bolsters the power packed performance of the other three starlets quite adequately.
The surreal mountainous backdrop of Pakistani “Kashmir” radiates the message of peace and harmony as desired by the director of the movie. Kabir Khan sure has an art of capturing the essence of a story in pictures- an innate skill every cinematographer desires for.
A storyline so fresh enlivened by the flawless acting of the 7 year old Harshali Malhotra and the “hud hud Dabang” hero is a treat to the eyes literally, visually whatsoever. Commendable storyline scripted by the “The Master Storyteller” Vijayendra Prasad who can now boast of writing the story for record breaking movies like “Bahubali and Bajrangi Bhaijan.
Set in the backdrop of the 26/11 Mumbai terror attacks, an attack which left the nation crippled and helpless in the hands of barbarians like David Headley, Zaki ur Rehman Lakhvi, Ajmal Kasab, Ansari – Phantom not only manages to retain the sentiment of the 26/11 carnage but also adds a cinematic flavour to the incident. Phantom has a very unlikely protagonist Saif Ali Khan essaying the role and hence can face the threat of not being a stereotyped movie. Phantom stands out because of the boldness of the script, concept and the underlying idea being insinuated to the Indian government.
Daniyal Khan (Saif Ali Khan) is an ex- Indian army fighter who lives in the eerie solitude of snowy mountains – dead inside and to the world. Possessing the skill of an Indian army fighter and the lonesomeness of a ghost, Daniyal Khan is the perfect candidate to undertake a covert mission planned by the RAW to kill the people involved in the 26/11 Mumbai terror attacks. Daniyal Khan executes the assailants one by one without exposing himself and giving an impression to the world that it was an accidental death. I think I can safely call him the “Globe-trotting classic killer machine” Eventually and predictably he succeeds in his mission but there is a catch. A catch which is better left unrevealed.
The script can be rendered as a high tension wire with slight variations in intensity here and there. It is bold, crude and action packed. What stands out the most is that the script uses actual names of the people involved in this brutality! They have also attached the history and involvement of each person compelling our mind to re-visit the timeline and gory splatter of the 26/11 carnage. This movie is an awakening to those filmmakers in the film industry who crouch under the fear of the unknown power impelling them to tame down the intensity of scripts based on gory reality of such incidents. Thousands incidents to name yet there isn’t one movie which mirrors the real incident. Most of the scripts shadows the incident, but do not mirror it.
Coming to the performances, Katrina dilutes the high tension of the movie and decelerates the momentum. I fail to comprehend as to why she is the most sought after actress for such powerful roles? Just because she was outstanding in Rajneeti does not mean she can fit into any intensity- demanding role whatsoever. I saw hints of “Ajab Prem ki Gazab Khani” in her acting which is certainly a sacrilege for a movie like this. Saif Ali Khan, according to me is versatile. He can carry any role on his shoulder- he need not have the martial skills of Akshay Kumar or the brazen body of Salman Khan. Hence the threat of not being stereotypical. His mastery over his expression and his flawless dialogue delivery complement each other so well thus making his screen present felt.
Overall a great movie- certainly a one-time watch. It mirrors the 26/11 attack perfectly and also devises the perfect solution. Sadly, cowardice shall never allow us to implement that solution. The philosophers always have an answer to the critics- “We are not them”.
Spoiler: One realizes Katrina is the actual Phantom of the movie. Remains inconspicuous to the whole world yet very much responsible for the success of the mission.
Bullet Raj,a gangster flick..more of a subtle version of Dabang- Sonakshi Sinha coincidentally playing the female protagonist’s role in both the films.
The movie boasts of big names like Saif Ali Khan, Sonakshi Sinha, and Raj Babbar. Hence, a “pricy production- gone down the drain” case is least expected here. The deciding factor is if it will fight its way to the so called “100 crore club”
Director Tigamashu Dhulia tries to give a sincere insight into the lives of conniving political ministers and their crafty sidekicks. Money laundering, illegal election funds, Jail depicted as a safe home for notorious criminals and all other disciplinary taboos are seamlessly woven into the storyline
Bullet Raja- in what reference has the title been coined so?
Just because his name is Raja Misra, rides a bullet and by profession is a “Gunda”? Well, if the person who has written the script has all the patience in the world to sit down and write 1000’s of dialogues then don’t tell me he cannot spare a minute to think of a dignified title? For instance, Golmaal- Throughout the movie Ajay Devgn is portrayed as a conman..cheating almost every character in the movie. Then why wasn’t the movie titled “beimaan”?
The movie is set in the backdrop of 3 locales- Uttar Pradesh(notorious for dirty politics), Mumbai and Kolkata! It begins with a marriage setting in which Rudra ( Jimmy Shergil’s) befriends Raja (Saif Ali khan). They get involved in a political feud, go to jail, and then kill few people- all this segues in into them working for a top minister Ram babu Shukla (Raj babbar).The story takes a twist when Rudra is killed by the “moneybags” Bajaj (who also helps in the funding of Ram Babu Shukla)
The movie gains momentum during the second half and is about how Raja avenges Rudra’s death, forgetting all the political relations with Ram Babu and his associates. Mitali (Sonakshi Sinha) plays the love interest of Raja.. After a lot of action, there are moments of sweet sober romance in the backdrop of Kolkata’s authentic milieu! Well, once again the action resumes with Debutante Vidyut Jamwal in scene. Is he a friend or an enemy? I wouldn’t want to ruin anybody’s suspense.
The ending is very disappointing and leaves a lot to be desired. Guess the person who wrote the script got bored and wound up the whole thing into a muddled mess garnished with undesirable dialogues.
Saif Ali khan’s role has been expertly executed . His acting- flawless! He does not let your attention waver- and the transformation of his character during the aftermath of Rudra’s death is pretty sleek. Sonakshi Sinha, well not very impressive..Guess even she did not find the movie too “Dabang” to give her best.She doesn’t score much..but leaves a mark nonetheless. Vidyut Jamwal with those Greek gods looks, charming personality, super sublime action moves and electrifying performance ..grabs the attention of the viewers. Except for his expressions- highly superfluous and awkward! Jimmy Shergil- a misfit for the role because of his cute looks..but what saved him from the critics was his acting. I give him a 10/10 for that! Very convincing and powerful, enacting his part with utmost conviction and perseverance with hardly any goof ups. He is someone who can deliver his best if given an opportunity!
The background score for this music is not very pleasant and also very gaudy! Songs like “Don’t touch my body” are so obnoxious and repulsive! The lyrics are so tacky, that it is a downright disgrace to the old time melodies of Hindi film industry. The soundtracks have absolutely no significance or relation to the story line. Guess the only song which fit in was “Satak”. The music was a major turn off about the movie.
“Loyalty to friendship” is what this movie is in short. Their friendship can be defined as” brusque but unbreakable” (as stated by Subhash K Jha). Well, so much that you start contemplating if the director is hinting at gay context.
Bullet Raja does try to woo the masses but it does not convey the spicy and a racy essence which you link with “Dabang” or “Wanted”.. Mafia, industry , politics- a rough and uneven blend or a nexus of these 3 is what forms the plot of this movie.
On the whole, not the kind of cinema that dares to defy the stereotype..except for the straight out of life action sequences, locales, there is nothing about this movie that will woo the high class audiences who anticipate a tinge of uniqueness from a top notch director.
Dedh Ishqiya? What was Abhishek Chaubey thinking while coining the title of this movie? Was he hinting at the rating of this movie even before it hit the screens? Well, unaware of his intentions, the title sure does flatter the standard of this movie. If not for stalwarts like Madhuri Dixit, Naseeruddin Shah and Arshad Warsi gracing the screen, this movie would not even have had crossed the “dedh” mark.
Set in the shady locales of Muhammadabad (somewhere in Uttar Pradesh..?), lives the pride of Muhammadabad- Begum Para (Madhuri Dixit-Nene).Knocked down by reality, what we see is a lonely Begum, widowed, lost out on life and lives like a ghost in the haunted palace which once belonged to her and the late Nawab of Muhammadabad. Muniya (Huma Qureshi) – caters for the needs of Begum and takes care of her. Her relationship with Begum Para is rather confusing. (Her best friend/soul mate/ we don’t really know what Vishal Bharadwaj is hinting at..?) On the other side of Muhammadabad, live two thieves named Babban (Arshad Warsi) and his uncle “Khalujan” aka Ifthekar (Naseeruddin Shah) who make their living by committing petty crimes.. The first half of this movie is devoted to a competition which Begum Para holds to choose a husband (The late Nawab wanted the Begum to re-marry after his death but, only to a poet) – the best poet wins the bride. Somehow Ifthekaar lands up as one of the prospective grooms and then what follows is a rib tickling saga of love, lust, deceit and friendship! Naseeruddin Shah introduces us to the seven stages of love: “dilkashi”, “uns”, “mohobbat”, “akidat”, “ibadat”, “junoon” and….”Chu****”. Sounds like a documented PhD in subject of “love”, doesn’t it?
The concept of this movie has an uncanny resemblance with the reality show “Rakhi ka swayamwar” where in the contestants have to participate in various competitions and the one who manages to get an “all clear”, is then chosen as a suitable groom for Ms. Rakhi Sawant. What a cheesy concept I must say- the same idea modelled and polished with a classy touch of antiquity.
Guess, Abhishek Chaubey and Vishal Bharadwaj realized that the story penned by Daraab Farooqui was too feeble to withstand the blows of BO and hence, opted for an extravagant casting just to save this movie from collapsing miserably. Usually stories are written keeping the casting in mind, here it was the contrary! Which proved to be an erroneous blunder because the storyline failed to sync with the breathtaking theater grandeur of Madhuri Dixit, the gibberish humor of Arshad Warsi and the intensity of Naseeruddin Shah. I am pretty sure Arshad Warsi shall always be remembered as “Cirkit” of “Munnai Bhai” and not “Babban” of “Dedh Ishqiya”.
A good execution of role by Madhuri Dixit -Nene! The Begum nuances do suit her pretty well. An impressive comeback- well played! Arshad Warsi, gifted with the art of slapstick comedy manages to tickle our funny bone even in the darkest situations, including a stand-off in which many guns are pointed at many heads. Naseeruddin Shah, a souvenir of the Indian theatre is just as appealing as he was in the prequel “Ishqiya”. Huma Qureshi – surprisingly ignites the screen with her rowdy charm thus boosting the momentum of this unusually mellowed down movie.
The whole storyline looked like it was weaved from the strands of superficiality. Also, it appeared that Vishal Bharadwaj had no budget left to provide adequate lighting..so I recommend you get a torch or something before entering the hall..because you actually start wondering if something is wrong with your eyes. Nevertheless, a onetime watch for die-hard fans of Mrs. Nene. Also, the true artistic essence of this movie shall surely be savored by the people who appreciate movies of this kind or genre. Sorry to quip in, but just one small advice if you are going to watch this movie- be sure to carry a Hindi-Urdu dictionary along with the torch of course!
Before I pen down my view on “Goliyo ki Raasleela-Ramleela”, I would like to pose two questions.
So what is the “key ingredient” or should I say “key ingredients” that pave way for super success or a colossal flop of a film at the box office? Also, “Ramleela” though being declared a “hit” failed to enthrall many of the film-critics around the globe- Why? Strange questions- both being contrary to each other! But isn’t this how a movie is judged?
Well, this is my take..
“What is in the name? “- Is one of the questions that someone asked- that is when I quipped in saying “A lot!!” What persuaded me to say that? In Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s ‘Goliyon Ki Rasleela Ram-Leela’, the storyline meanders in an “epic” style.The tale has references to two greatest epics of all times- collaborating a Western classic and an Indian saga, just enough to make the result enthralling and captivating! Compelling us to relate every scene of the movie to one of these epics!
Somewhere in Gujarat, a fictional small town named “Ranjaar” is a battlefield for two clans- the “Rajadi’s” and the “Sanedas”. The “Sanedas” being the wealthy lot having all the riches, resources and assets of Ranjaar. The “Rajadi’s” being just the opposite- “guroor” being their weapon. “Guroor mei doob ke samundar ko kya pata tha rann ban jayega”- one of the most impressive dialouges from this movie. Ram (Ranveer Singh) and Leela (Deepika Padukone) run into each other during Holi celebrations – of how I interpret it, it is lust at first sight! But their romance is prejudiced by “eon long enmity of the warring clans”, compelling them to hide their affection for each other. Leela is just as fiery and brazen igniting the passion and boldness in Ram to sneak into her balcony, steal kisses and romance in the shadows of vengeance. The story takes a gory turn when Ram avenges the death of his brother “Meghji” by killing Leela’s brother “Kanji” and then what follows is a blood-filled saga of ruthless violence with the two clans pitted against each other.
When we know its Sanjay Leela Bhansali, we are assured of the delightful spectacle because that is his stereotype! We have seen that in his magnum opus – Devdas and “Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam”. The meticulously designed sets, the grandeur of the havelis, the perfect placement of the diyas, the intricate designs of the tattoos, the vibrant Ghaghara’s, the rich ,scintillating colours of the curtains and the drapes that nearly blind your eye-everything is just too perfect to be true! Perfectionism at its worst is how I describe this.
The soundtracks are with true sense in sync with the fiery emotions, passion and the sizzling chemistry between the lead pair! “Ang laga de” – by Aditi Paul is beautifully choreographed and the lyrics articulate the conflicting emotions of betrayal and love! “Nagada sang dhol”- another number that peps you up. The 3-D, the drums, the dance and Deepika- deadly recipe of success! Ghazal, romance, and traditional dance- you name it and its there! The background score- well, not too many credits here because all you hear is gun shots, sound of bottles hurtled at each other, abuses and cheesy language.
Deepika Padukone with her earthy and conventional looks scorches the screen and infuses a raw energy in the character of “Leela”. Excellently executed with the perfect look, amazing dialogue delivery and those breathtaking expressions! “Ang laga de”- Deepika is a treat to watch in that song! A de-glammed look, garbed in a white lehenga and those eyes which talk the language of love and lust- this is what a movie needs to incorporate, the reality, to hit the bulls eye of the audience – to make them feel, listen, see with the character which SLB has successfully ensured! Ranveer Singh comes off as a surprise here, never imagined him as an intense lover boy, after all his “Roadside Romeo” type roles in “Ladies vs Ricky Behl”, “Band Baaja Baraat” etc.. Yet, the movie belongs to Deepika Padukone! The chemistry deployed by them is very commendable- one reason as to why there were speculations about their chemistry off-screen as well. Nevertheless, it helped “Ramleela” to score in the box office- if I may conclude that this was the key ingredient of the winning recipe. Ranveer Singh does have his share in this victory to an extent but what ruins it is his gaudy attire and emotions in excess (He needs to tame down). “Tattad tattad”- the lyrics were pretty obnoxious and the song looked more like a show off of his brazen body with veins protruding from almost everywhere! Supriya Pathak “Dhankor” with her buxom form, typical Gujrati dialect plays the picture-perfect Gujrati lady don. Enamored by the gripping and intense performances given by the supporting actresses Riccha Chadda and Barkha Bisht as well, SLB seems to have scored well with the casting as well.
Overall, a must watch- not because it’s SLB’s production or Deepika or Ranveer, but for the locales, the vibrant hues and the clandestine beauty that lies within the gory yet adorable story which fills you with a sense of joy and sinless love. Inspite of the ghastly violence depicted, SLB brings out the best of the characters Ram and Leela who boldly romance in the hope that “ek din ran me phool barsenge”
A “moonlit white canvas- clean and pure” love story painted by the vibrant performances of two “just out of the closet” fresh and naïve actors Parineeti Chopra and Siddharth Malhotra! The whole liveliness and vivacity of the story as well as the cast is what makes this movie worth a one-time watch!
The concept is succulent and contemporary, not very acceptable to the conservative families of India yet refreshing and entertaining for the Gen-Y! The milieu is centred on the suburbs of Mumbai with recurrent mention to “The great republic of China”- the idea seemingly far-fetched, yet signifies the place of residence of Meeta (Parineeti Chopra) – a chemical engineering graduate from the IIT’s. Meeta, now a brilliant scientist – returns to India to attend her sister- Karishma’s (Adah Sharma) marriage to Nikhil (Siddharth Malhotra) after 7 years of unexplained absence. It is revealed later that she had run away after committing a burglary in her own house as she needed money for her project. Meeta is erratic, whimsical, clumsy and amusing in her own way. Her innocence well preserved and contained within her. Like every other Bollywood family the “meri beti mere liye mar chuki hai” drama follows for Meeta’s unpardonable crime. And, as destiny strikes, Karishma’s instructs her fiancée Nikhil to take care of Meeta for time being. Sparks fly, chemicals react and Voila- love blooms! Meeta, unknown of her feelings enjoys the company of Nikhil while Nikhil- a very sentimental “one woman man” sees himself getting attracted to his fiancées sister which is rather too hideously immoral for him to accept. Both of them are in need of a huge sum of money for their own personal needs- Meeta for her research and Nikhil for his business. The climax is clichéd and predictable- but the journey from the beginning till the end is fun filled and entertaining.
The performance rendered by starlets Parineeti and Siddharth is flawless! Surely a huge asset to this movie. The pairing was fresh- their charm and talent radiating from their face is what sky rocketed the movie’s standard alone. Siddharth Malhotra is very convincing with his dialogues and expressions and Parineeti- as natural as she can be! Their chemistry is well depicted yet when we mark the transition from friendship to love on black to white graph, the graph is slightly abrupt and not smooth enough to show the gradual transition.
The soundtrack of this movie is very soothing. The lyrical orientation of the song is what stands out for me. Perfectly placed, the background score adds to the emotional quotient of this movie.
As the movie chugs forward, it evolves into a more sensitive and dramatic kind of a movie where in the story switches from leaving you in hysterics of laughter and the next moment in streams of tears. The “Love seat” moment in true sense is a serendipity- highlight of the whole movie! You actually start getting the feels. For me, that was the last feather in the cap. That just did it!
Overall, worth a watch- at least a onetime watch! I am sure you shall not be disappointed and shall have a rather pleasant evening, with “cute” “love dovey” feelings and humming “Manchala” as you come out of the theater.