Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Lahore Se Aagay - Movie Review

Desi Rating: 1.5/5

Produced & Directed by: Wajahat Rauf
Written by : Yasir Hussain
Music by: Shiraz Uppal
  • Yasir Hussain as Motii
  • Saba Qamar as Taraa Ahmed
  • Mubashir Malik as Ali
  • Rubina Ashraf as Farah
  • Behroze Sabzwari as Mamu

  • During my university days I used to do theater, mostly comedy skits. The basic idea we used to have is to create situations where we can have good jokes/punch lines /funny moments with some sort of storyline just to back the situations we wanted. We never cared about the believability of the story or how logical the flow was. Our aim was simply to be entertaining and make people laugh throughout the skit and this formula, is what I believe writer Yasir Hussain and Director Wajahat Rauf has used for this film.
    Unfortunately this formula for me works well for 20-30 minutes theater plays only and for 140 minutes silver screen entertainer we should seriously stay away from this. I am not against brainless comedies but these brainless comedies still need some level of character development and story lines so that audience could connect to it. Jokes and punchlines were good and they help you get through this ordeal but if I am paying for a cinema ticket I deserve a movie not some standup comedy act. There are scenes in film which were simply not required for example dance off on old pop songs of Pakistan. I mean if you really want to have a dance off then minimum you can do is to hire some good professional dancers, the whole sequence was very long and painful to sit through.  This movie could have been much better if writer had focused on story line and a bit more on motive development of characters. It already had good funny moments, the only thing missing from script is that we don’t know exactly why these people are acting in this manner. There were some authentic romantic moments but completely wasted because of their placement and also from the fact that we couldn’t connect to the characters.
    Shiraz Uppal's music is not memorable and just average with ‘Qalabaaz Dil’ being slightly above average. This song felt like a copy of Madhuri’s famous item number Ghaghra. Choreography of the songs and setups were quite amateur, Pakistan film industry has a long way to go in this department.
    Yasir Hussain has acted his part well but Saba Qamar felt like coming in and out of her character throughout the film. There were moments where she was brilliant and then there were moments where it felt like watching a school girl performing on senior’s farewell. Attiqa Odo, Behroze Sabzwari and Rubina Ashraf were completely wasted and their parts are so under written that they felt like cameos rather than supporting roles. Rest of the cast was quite annoying especially the actor who played Saba Qamar’s boyfriend.
    On the positive side, from technical production quality perspective it did not feel like a Pakistani drama which was refreshing. Also Pakistan has been captured really well throughout the film. Pace of the movie is also good it may annoy you because of the content but will not drag for a moment throughout 140 minutes.

    Lahore Se Aagay for me is more like a standup comedy act which one might enjoy but not expect from a silver screen entertainer, I go with 1.5 stars.

    Tuesday, October 25, 2016

    Janaan - Movie Review

    Desi Ratings: 1.5/5 stars

    Directed by:
    Azfar Jafry

    Produced by:
    Hareem Farooq
    Reham Khan

    Written by:
    Osman Khalid Butt

    Armeena Khan
    Bilal Ashraf
    Ali Rehman Khan
    Hania Amir
    Ajab Gul
    Mishi Khan
    Nayyer Ejaz                   

    Main issue with Janaan is Osman Khalid's script/screenplay. Janaan has so many subplots that by the end one tends to forget what is this movie actually about. Story is about Meena an overseas raised Pakhtoon girl who comes back to Pakistan after 11 years, falls in love with one of his two eligible bachelor cousins and end up deciding to live in Pakistan. Concept was very simple and with the kind of budget/technical expertise available had the potential to become next 'Hum Apke Hain Kaun'.

    I wish Osman Khalid Butt had only focused on the elements of the love story/family drama in detail and left the villain (child abuse) angle out. For me I did not get why both guys fell in love with Meena, why Meena never visited Pakistan in 11 years and had no clue how his cousins looked like, (Spoiler Alert) why Asfandyar was adopted, How come the whole village went against Ikramullah so quick,  this movie had so many issues that I was even thinking that they can own a SUV but can't afford a UPS (ref to candle light dinner sequence).
    And if I think about the way this movie was promoted, there is so much that was missing in the movie for example a good Pakhtoon/Punjabi fusion wedding elements, funny cultural shock interactions, a nice romantic/wedding Balay Balay type song etc.

    I liked Azfar's effort as a second time director but with a loose script like this I don't think he had any chance. Music was also a let down and I was not comfortable with the amount of Pushto used in the movie.

    Acting department is the saving grace of this movie. Ajab Gul and Mishi Khan were very refreshing. Ali Rehman portrayed pindi boy accurately, Bilal Arshraf also for most of the part held his ground as an angry young man. Here my main problem was with Armeena Khan , she lacked the screen presence required to carry such a movie. I felt the same while watching Bin Roye and this time Hania Amir as Palwasha seemed more appropriate for the role of Meena.

    One thing I loved about the movie is how they shot Swat. I had no idea Swat which was terrorist heaven till some time back had so much scenic beauty. My next trip to Pakistan will definitely include a weekend in Swat.

    This script and production would have been an excellent 21 episode drama where all the elements have been given enough time and effort to materialize but as a 2 hour silver screen entertainer it failed miserably. I go with 1.5 star only


    Saturday, September 10, 2016

    Actor in law - Movie Review

    Desi Rating: 3/5

    Directed by :  Nabeel Qureshi
    Produced by:  Fizza Ali Meerza
                           Medhi Ali
    Written by :    Fizza Ali Meerza
    Starring :        Fahad Mustafa
                           Mehwish Hayat
                           Om Puri
                           Alyy Khan                

    I am happy with the kind of films coming out of Pakistani film industry these days. Nabeel Qureshi's 'Actor In Law' is a satire on today's political and social scenario of Pakistan. It's a good intention film staying true to 'message with entertainment' concept. Fahad Mustafa is shown as a struggling actor who is having trouble getting noticed even with his own father, portrayed convincingly by Om Puri. Later he realizes his acting has a lot more worth in Pakistan court rooms and with support from an upright journalist Mehwish Hayat, he starts poking into major Karachi issues. This makes a lot of people in media and political arena angry and they start to work against him.
    Script is well written and balances very well between the humor, storyline and social messages. Somehow I felt the script even though good and balanced, lacked loudness required for silver screen thus more appropriate for a telefilm. Nevertheless cinema hall was bursting out with occasional cheering on Fizza Ali's seemingly light and easy sarcasm, so something must have clicked with the big screen audience as well.
    Film is shot esthetically , even the ordinary streets and court rooms of Karachi looked lively and colorful., which makes this movie very easy on the eyes.
    Fahad Mustafa as a flop actor looks ordinary enough for the role, Mehwish Hayat is just ok as a Parsi out spoken journalist and Om Puri makes us connect to his disappointments as a father with ease. Rest of the cast does well also.

    Playable Music, believable acting, laugh out loud comedy and stirring messages makes 'Actor In Law' a must go this Eid. I left cinema entertained , I go with 3 desi stars.

    Tuesday, August 30, 2016

    Ae Dil Hai Mushkil | Teaser Review

    Finally the teaser trailer for Dharma Productions much awaited film ‘Ae Dil Hai Mushkil’ is out and I must say I am hooked to title track. Great Vocals by Arijit Singh. Unfortunately apart from the title track nothing looks different enough to be interesting. I know it is Karan Johar, Ranbir Kapoor, Anushka Sharma, Aishwarya Rai Bachchan and Fawad Khan, these five names alone are enough for one to step in to cinema but these days with so much good work around, one also expect something unique from big names like these. Based on the Title track and closing dialogue of Ranbir this movie seems like an intense love story. I love Anushka, I enjoyed her NH10, PK, Band Baja Barat but none of them were intense love stories so I have my doubts knowing what happened to Yash Chopras ‘Jab Tak Hai Jaan’. Whatever Ranbir does in the trailer seems like we have seen it all before, whether it him walking sadly or being drunk or being on a bike. Only Ashwarya and Fawad add a bit of spice to this otherwise bland teaser who by the way look gorgeous as usual.  Anyway as I said earlier and I guess this is the reason in the beginning Karan Johar reminds us of all of his previous hit ventures, Names associated with this film are huge and definitely one should at least go once to cinema. I wanted to rate it as "I already love it" but the trailer somehow is not fascinating for me. However I am sure movie would be a good watch, given its Karan Johar we are talking about over here.

    I already love it

    Feels interesting should go for it

    Big names one should go

    Suggested not to waste your money

    Run away from the cinema




    Monday, August 29, 2016

    Suicide Squad - Movie Review

    Desi Rating: 2.5/5

    Written & Directed by David Ayer
    Produced by Charles Roven/Richard Suckle
    Will Smith
    Jared Leto
    Margot Robbie
    Joel Kinnaman
    Viola Davis
    Jai Courtney
    Jay Hernandez
    Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje
    Ike Barinholtz
    Scot Eastwood
    Cara Delevingne

    Suicide Squad is about a US special agent (I don't know which agency she belonged to) trying to form a team of super individuals to fight against potential super villains. This team is sent on a rescue mission turned into save the world extravaganza against pre historic enchantress.
    I am not familiar with comic book world of Suicide Squad so I purely went to cinema for super villain turned hero concept.
    This installment from DC comic universe turned out to be an average film, it was neither boring like Batman vs. Superman nor great as Civil War. Problem with such movies is that there is so much hype around them that expectation bar becomes skyrocketing.
    This film lacked basic elements. Most of the villains had no super power they were simply crazy which for me at least not a qualification befitting the concept. Script lacked creativity, if you remember the justice league introduction sequence from Batman vs. Superman, here introduction was similarly bland. Character development , back stories, motivation to join the squad etc. all basic stuff was missing. We can still live with this if the action sequences and rest of script made sense but heavily disappointed here as well. Most of the characters simply felt useless as I couldn't establish any connection with the characters. As far as action is concerned I wonder what will it take for DC comics to have them during the day or in some light so that we can actually see/appreciate what is happening.

    Heavily advertised Joker's character was a complete dud, I know he was required to keep the plot moving but would have preferred if his role was written with some mystery. Same goes for the most obvious and uninventive Batman and Flash cameos.
    There were some good elements as well. I loved the evil brother sister duo of enchantress and incubus. They were grand and easily made Suicide Squad look weak and less evil. Margot Robbie and Will Smith as Harley Quinn and Deadshot have done great job portraying the only well written roles in the movie and provide much needed comic relief throughout. For once this DC installment has good pace and doesn't drag at all. The surprise element connected to El Diablo in final stand off was impressive ,I wish it had more prominence graphically as well.
    I know like any DC film, despite of negative reviews it will still do record breaking business so for next installments of this franchise, I will suggest makers to spend some more writing time into creative introduction/development of already super cool / loved characters and add a little light when the action is happening for people like me. I go with 2.5 stars

    Sunday, August 28, 2016

    Happy Bhag Jayegi - Short Movie Review

    Desi Rating: 1.5/5

    Mudassar Aziz's Happy Bhag Jayegi tries so hard to be Jab We Met that they have even added Kareena's dialogue regarding what ever is happening to me is happening because of me only, but sadly Abhay is not Shahid and Diana is definitely not Kareena. Throughout the movie every one kept saying how great and free spirited Happy is but we never get to see that side of Happy on screen and this is the main problem with this film , every thing is being told and not shown. I believe writer used Google translator for Pakistani Urdu part of Abhay and Momal , being a Pakistani I know, no one in Pakistan speaks like 'mein sharab pee ker saree raat nachi thee'. This movie got all the right ingredients but not in correct proportions. It could have been a better entertainer if writer and casting director would have spent a bit more time on their parts. I will suggest not to waste money on this even for DVD and wait for it to be on TV. I go with 1.5 Desi Star.

    Saturday, August 20, 2016

    Jason Bourne - Short Movie Review

    Desi Rating: 1.5/5
    Never thought, I will start my short movie review series with this one. This movie seriously has nothing to offer, even car chase sequences and fist fights that are staple of this franchise lacked the usual charisma. Unnecessary camera shuffle made it really hard to focus on what was actually happening on screen. Also movie run time can easily be reduced by 50% if we remove all the scenes where people are just walking to the table to the room to the target etc. By the end I was bored and wondering what director Paul Greengrass and producer/main lead Matt Damon wanted to achieve with this film. One advice to the makers please stop when you run out of the original novel series, I go with 1.5 desi star.

    Tuesday, August 16, 2016

    A Flying Jatt - Trailer Review

    Story and Directed by Remo D’Souza, Produced by Ekta Kapoor and Starring Tiger Shroff opposite Jacqueline Fernandez
    While randomly skipping through TV channels I stumbled upon a romantic song from A Flying Jatt and from the first look of it I was quite skeptical, I didn’t like the costume outlook and the whole repeated flying with the lady choreography of the song and cherry on the top was finding so many physics error while blue masked hero is showing of his flying skills.

    Well who ever felt the same should see the full trailer on YouTube, link below:

    Surprisingly I liked the trailer, in the trailer you can see a clumsy super hero with a regular demanding over the top Punjabi mom and with this everything from the suit to physics error becomes acceptable. In the time where Hollywood is pouring super hero movies in the cinema by dozen and all are usually serious films with heavy agendas, this comedy super hero action film could give cinema goers a refreshing experience.
    Over all look and feel of the villain and action sequence is interesting as well, especially the glimpse of underwater action that we see in trailer, I still have some concern regarding graphics but it’s a Bollywood movie and is intended as a comedy super hero film so that shouldn’t be a big issue.
    For trailer instead of stars I will give recommendations if one should go for this movie or not and green color will highlight the recommendation.

    Can't wait for it to be released
    Feels interesting should go for it
    Only if you have no other options
    Suggested not to waste your money
    Run away from the cinema

    Saturday, July 30, 2016

    Dishoom - Movie Review

    Desi Rating: 1/5

    Directed by:     Rohit Dhawan
    Produced by:   Sajid Nadiadwala
                               Sunil A Lulla
    Written by:       Hussain Dalal
    Screenplay by: Rohit Dhawan
                               Tushar Hiranandani
    Story by:           Rohit Dhawan
    Starring:           John Abraham
                              Varun Dhawan
                              Akshaye Khanna
                              Jacqueline Fernandez

    If you can leave your brain home then this might please you a little. I am not against brainless action comedy as long as they have and I quote Vidya Balan from The Dirty Picture “Entertainment, Entertainment, Entertainment”, unfortunately this movie has nothing much to offer.

    This movie will especially irritate those who live in UAE, my mind was not accepting the fact that an Indian (or matter of fact any one) can point a gun to an Emirati Officer without any consequences or the bike chase inside Ferrari world (where was the park security or where did they get the bikes or ATV in the first place).

    Script is illogical to the extent that it starts to insult ones intellect. There is no character building at all. Plot is predictable. Dialogues are neither witty nor memorable. I still don’t understand why on earth writers would think it will be hilarious to include already exhaustedly repeated old jokes like ‘ap kee picture daikhi hamain pasand nahin aee’. Also that Abuddin sequence, what were writers thinking and especially who designed those awfull shalwar kameez suits.
    As far as acting is concerned we should never expect much from John and Jaqueline, they fit well in to the outlines of roles and that should be enough. The only saving grace in this department is Varun and his perfect comic timings.

    If anyone need to learn how to create ridiculously flat boring action sequences with all the right ingredients they should watch this film. I mean to say we have helicopters, sky scrapers, yachts, desert, fully muscled heroes and all sorts of fancy cars, yet what we get is 1 helicopter and car chase in the end.
    This movie does have some funny moments like Akshay Kumar's Cameo but they are not enough to save the film. With a buddy cop formula where one is rough/tuff and other is ineffective/silly coupled with mediocre action sequences, forced item number and some acceptable comic moments, this film feels like a sloppy remake of even sloppier film Dhoom (even the name Dishoom seems inspired from it)

    I go with 1 desi star only for Varun's comic timing and Akshay Kumar’s cameo as they helped me last through the film. 

    Saturday, July 16, 2016

    Warcraft - Movie Review

    Desi Rating: 3/5
    Directed by:    Duncan Jones
    Produced by:   Thomas Tull
                             Jon Jashni
                             Charles Roven
                             Alex Gartner
                             Stuart Fenegan
    Screenplay by: Charles Leavitt
                             Duncan Jones
    Story by:          Chris Metzen
    Starring:           Travis Fimmel
                             Paula Patton
                             Ben Foster
                             Dominic Cooper
                             Toby Kebbell
                             Ben Schnetzer
                             Robert Kazinsky
                             Daniel Wu
    Warcraft reminds us of how powerful this digital age cinema is when it comes to bringing your imagination to life. This is my favorite genre of cinema as it lets you experience some thing you can’t otherwise.

    I have never heard of Warcraft franchise before but some how this movie felt like a video game and it turns out to be actually based on Warcraft video games and set of novels.

    In the beginning you might get the feel of watching an animated film, but as soon as the human elements join the films I almost forgot that these Orcs are computer generated.

    Story line gets confusing close to end and I really did not get few elements of the story but I guess these days every movie has to be a set of 3 films minimum so we will know more with sequels.

    Plot is simple and set in a world of realms rather than planets, basically Orcs world is dying and in order to protect their race they invade human realm. There are warlocks, warriors, honest royalty, flying bird horses, castles, portals etc clubbed with tribal pride, acceptance, honor, betrayal, and love all packed into this 120 minutes experience, so you can imagine how fast paced this movie is.

    I didn’t find Travis Fimmel as main lead to be convincing enough but it doesn’t mean he was awful, its simply rest of the cast did slightly better job. 

    There was a moment in the movie when I was desperately praying for guardian to save Travis’ on screen son and such connection with audience is usually rare in such movies. Action sequences are crisp, fast paced and entertaining with the right amount of sword fights, magic and mythical creatures.

    This movie offers great cinema experience and is meant for bigger screen. If you are into this type of fantasy cinema than I can guarantee you that these would be fastest 120 minutes of your life without a single dull moment. I go with 3 Desi Stars


    Thursday, June 30, 2016

    Short Reviews

    I am going to start series of short reviews that will give one a quick idea regarding whether they should go for a movie or not. These reviews will be of 3 to 4 lines only highlighting all a movie has to offer coupled with desi ratings.

    Tuesday, May 17, 2016

    Wake up with Jaggu and Tarana - Radio Show Review

    Desi Rating: 4/5

    If you live in Northern Emirates such as Sharjah, Ajman up to Ras Al Khaimah and travel to Dubai or Abu Dhabi for work then morning shows must be essential part of your daily routine. There are few Desi channels available and all have morning shows to make most of their business from the market that is people stuck in traffic and in return make seemingly cumbersome journey a bit pleasant.

    My most favorite show is Wake Up with Jaggu and Tarana on station Josh 97.8. The show host Jaggu and Tarana have ruled Mumbai radio scene through morning show for 7 years almost. The show was quite popular, even Bollywood stars still remember them. Josh radio is a new station started only in 2012 and after many failed tries at morning shows decided to bring the tried and tested duo of Jaggu and Tarana to rock the morning of UAE.

    The best thing about them is the chemistry and the history together. Chemistry makes the show fun and history adds substance to the show. Jaggu is like mad scientist with all his theories and Tarana is like the critic that gets basically annoyed by any thing jaggu has to say.They both sound like a married couple which they are not. Jaggu is married and Tarana is single. Other people who are regularly mentioned on the show are Jaggu’s wife Khurana and Tarana’s Mom; their numerous mentions make one feel as if they are also part of the show and should get paid for every mention.

    This Show offers perfect balance of silly and serious stuff, something which is seriously missing in UAE desi radio world. From 6 to 10 apart from contests/games we get interesting news from around the world and Jaggu/Tarana’s reviews, financial market wrap including Indo-Pak Stock exchange-Dollar / Dirham rate vs. local currency etc, speaker’s corner is a segment where people call and record opinions on topics put forward by Jaggu/Tarana, humans of UAE- fairly new segment where one random person gets to tell his/her story for a minute, obscure world days are celebrated such accountants day, nurse day, (I am not sure from where they get these days from) etc.

    There are 3 contests/games starting in first hour with School Run where you get to answer a 5th standard question through sms and the selected answer gets a call back. There is no prize with School Run what you get is only appreciation (it is hilarious when a caller asks what do I win and Jaggu/Tarana reply with some random appreciation banter)

    Second game is “Ao Guess Kerain (let’s Guess)” and is usually a question based on celebs birthday or the world days being celebrated. Here the sms and call back format is same and winner walks aways with open cinema ticket for 2.

    Third and my most favorite game is speedy singh, where there is a weekly winner and the prize money is 500 dirham. Speedy singh I believe the name is inspired by Milkha singh. Here basically participant who is randomly selected based on sms has to guess as many songs in a minute by just listening to the intro of the song. The whole setup game and player reactions are super hilarious at times.

    If you are lucky enough you get one of those days where the mic is left on during the song and you can enjoy candid Jaggu and Tarana (even more fun). Last time it happened we heard a very angry Tarana wiling to slap Jaggu for giving bad investment advice.

    The only draw back, if I have to list one, is the play list, their song selection is very poor and some time makes you change station to get some better music, but this doesn’t mean that their whole playlist is horrible, there are some kool aspects as well e.g. we always get one strings (Pakistani band) song, one 90’s (mostly Indian bands) song and some random english chartbuster.

    Overall a very well planned and executed show, with very up to date and entertaining content. My whole family is hooked to 97.8 only because of Jaggu/Tarana.

    Let me know what you think about this review also if you want me to review some other radio show.

    Friday, May 6, 2016

    Captain America - Civil War : Movie Review

    Desi Rating: 4.5/5

    Directed by:      Anthony Russo
                              Joe Russo
    Produced by:    Kevin Feige
    Screenplay by: Christopher MArkus
                             Stephen McFeely
    Production:      Marvel Studios


    Chris Evans
    Robert Downey Jr.
    Scarlett Johansson
    Sebastian Stan
    Anthony Mackie
    Don Cheadle
    Jeremy Renner
    Chadwick Boseman
    Paul Bettany
    Elicabeth Olsen
    Paul rudd
    Emily VanCamp
    Tom Holland
    Frank Grillo
    William Hurt
    Daniel Bruhl

    I am so impressed with Marvel Studios. They seem to have cracked the code to entertainment when it comes to Super hero movies. 

    As per the trailers and poster, I was expecting a solid conflict between Captain America and Iron Man,  that technically should drive the story and eventually lead to an epic war sequence also I was hoping for the movie to be not lost in story development of new characters being introduced and it did just that

    Screenplay is very well knitted , what was interesting throughout the film was the evolution of conflict between Steve and Tony and how every one gets involved and we know exactly why each and every character is fighting for the sides they are on. Director has done justice to the screen play as well, nothing seems staged or unnecessary. He has seemingly over come the challenge of having a dozen action heroes in 147 minute movie and yet each one of them shines through with ample screen time.  This Movie is not the story of good vs. evil , audience will have hard time choosing whose side they are on, as director has added concrete plot backing each sides.

    Coming to Action sequences great job by the team, as soon as one feels the story/drama is going too far there comes a super hero packed action that will drag you back into movie , none of them feel forced rather helps the plot development.

    This movie is action packed and all of the action moments are choreographed to epic proportions but the action sequence at the airport gives you the experience of a life time. Its like every action hero fanatic's dream and fantasy coming to life.

    There are two new characters introduced in this episode Black Panther and Spider man.

    For me I wasn't aware of black Panther character before so I am not sure how authentic it is in the movie compared to the comic book but his costume , fighting manner, back story really stands out and I believe this character deserves a separate movie.

    Spider man is already an established and famous character, his presence in the move was refreshing and made airport action sequences so much fun plus one get full perspective on how power full that character is. He seemed strongest of all the super heroes, being a fan myself that was a delight.

    Graphics , Music and Over all production is what one can expect in today's time from Hollywood.

    As far as actors are concerned there is no doubt about them. In an action packed super hero film there is very little margin for acting and in this context Scarlett Johansson got the part with the maximum acting potential and she excels as usual.

    Dozen of super heroes , over many cities across the world , couple of twists and turns in the plot and of course larger than life action sequences/graphics and yet nothing seems busy or out of control. For all super hero/comic characters movie buffs this movie will definitely wash away all the scars Batman vs. Superman left. I go with 4.5 stars

    Thursday, April 21, 2016

    The Jungle Book - Movie Review

    Desi Ratings : 4/5
    Directed by:       Jon Favreau
    Produced by:     Jon Favreau
                                 Brigham Taylor
    Screenplay by:  Justin Marks

    Bill Murray as Baloo
    Ben Kingsley as Bagheera
    Idris Elba as Shair Khan
    Lupita Nyong'o as Raksha
    Scarlett Johansson as Kaa
    Giancarlo Esposito as Akela
    Christopher Walken as King Luie
    Neel Sethi as Mowgli

    I entered the cinema without any expectations as for most Desi people Jungle Book is some sort of a connection to their childhood , but that was not the case with me.

    Disney's The Jungle Book starts with Mowgli running through the jungle with the pack of wolves and from that very moment the movie grips you and you stay with the movie till end.

    This movie is based on Jungle Book (1894 by Rudyard Kipling) and revolves around the story of a boy raised by wolves. If you can get over the fact that wolves raised the boy and most of the animals speak the same language then you are in for a good time. Story/screenplay is so well written and has so much to offer that you stay glued to the seat till very end.

    Graphics are so neat that not even once you feel that Mowgli is the only real thing or being in the movie. Could not have asked for better voice actors. Voice acting blends so well with the graphics and the whole combination makes it easy for us to connect with all the characters. From Raksha's Motherly love to Sher Khan's unjustified hate every thing engulfs you and you become part of their world.

    Neel Sethi as Mowgli has done a great job. His expressions , body language and overall persona he carries through the movie is of a 10 year old clever, regular boy yet he fits well in to jungle world.

    Also I  was surprised by the details that I got to see throughout the movie ( usually missing in such films ) e.g. when Mowgli is carried by monkeys through thick forest, one could see scratches all over his body once he lands.

    This movie offers a very entertaining and quality fantasy cinema experience and is for adults and kids both. I recommend with 4 stars.

    Thursday, March 31, 2016

    Ki & Ka - Movie Review

    Desi Rating : 3/5

    Directed and Written by : R. Balki
    Produced by:R. Balki/R K Damani/Rakesh Jhunjhunwala/Sunil Lulla
    Arjun Kapoor as Kabir
    Karina Kapoor Khan as Kia
    Swaroop Sampat as Mother of Kia
    Rajit Kapoor as Father of Kabir
    I am surprised with the kind of movies that are coming from Bollywood and Lollywood these days. Ki and Ka is one such film that belongs to genre of light rom com movies.

    This film is about what happens, when a man (Kabir) who wants to be a house husband and a workaholic career obsessed woman (Kia) gets into a relationship. Script is very well written and doesnt drag at all ( usually what happens to such movies).The whole film is about the evolution of the unique setup that Kabir and Kia are into and how it gets to the point, that director wants to prove throughout the movie. What that point is, I will leave it to you to figure out.
    If you reverse the roles of  Kabir and Kia, this movie will become ordinary and feels repetitive. for example: In movies we have seen many times ,a housewife trying to find another source of income with in her means to support her husband but for the very first time you will see a husband do the same in a film and that makes this movie entertaining.

    Direction is good and I really liked the rhythm/flow of the movie. Arjun Kapoor is very convincing in his role as a house husband, but Kareena has exceeded expectations definitely one of the best performances of her career. Mom of Kia and Father of Kabir have done exactly what was required from them. Plus there is a surprise element in the movie, one of my all time favorite couple  makes a cameo.

    Production quality up to the standards as expected and I simply loved the train station inspired apartment.
    Music is ok , could have been better. I like the placements of the song though. High heels is definitely a chartbuster.
    I could totally relate to the move and that made it even more entertaining. Its a must watch for couples in their 20s and 30s. This movie is definitely going to be in list of my all time favorite home movies next to English Vinglish.

    Monday, March 28, 2016

    Batman vs Superman - Dawn of Justice (movie review)

    Desi Rating : 2/5 
    Directed by : Zack Snyder
    Produced by:Charles Roven/Deborah Snyder
    Written by: Chris Terrio/David S. Goyer
    Ben Affleck as Bat Man
    Henry Cavill as Super Man
    Amy Adams as lois lane
    Jesse Eisenberg as Lex Luther
    Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman
    I usually review a movie in a structured way starting from story to acting to production but for this movie I think I can only review as a really disappointed fan.  I grew up around Batman, Superman and Spiderman. In 90s there was no Captain America , Iron Man, X men in the part of the world I belonged to and that's why to see your favorite characters not up to the level they deserve hurts.  
    I entered cinema expecting same great story line with twists and turns, some amazing production/CGI, epic action and above all some entertainment. I did get some bits and pieces of things here and there but may be I had really high expectations from the movie.
    One cannot categorize this movie as a super hero movie, it felt more like a drama film. I still don't understand why the DC movies lack the spark and excitement that Marvel movies create. Batman and Super Man are two most iconic characters, they are already  way more interesting & intense with a lot more to offer compared to Captain America or Iron Man, yet compared to Avengers this movie seemed like a kids school play.
    Story line doesn't make sense. Movies starts with political drama regarding what to do with Superman which for some reason is lost during second half, then we have batman whose story gets so confusing between reality & dreams that one cannot develop the connection with the character. Lex Luther character is not evolved as a villain should I never understood what is his feud with Superman or Batman. Lois lane is really not required in this movie. Story line is all over the place, how on earth can having a common mother's name change u in a split second from foe to friends.
    Then there are dream sequences. Both superman and batman for most part of the movie were having dreams which I didn't understand at all. Editing is so poor that I couldn't connect one scene from the other at times.

    The fight in the end gets exciting only when wonder women joins them , who by the way is completely wasted in this film. Fight between Superman and Batman which was suppose to be the peak of the movie is so bland that I almost slept in that part.
    Second problem I had with the film was continuous night and rain. the whole film is so dark and dull that I never actually understood what's happening especially during the action sequences.
    We also have a very lame introduction to the justice league close to end as well by this point I was dead with disappointment.
    After watching this one I believe when it come to entertainment  we should stick to Marvel world only and leave this one for hard core nerds and fans who would really understand the drama, darkness and action that this movie has to offer.


    Saturday, March 19, 2016

    Kapoor and Sons (Since 1921) - Movie Review

    Desi Rating : 3.5/5

    Directed by:Shakun batra
    Produced by:
    Hiroo Yash Johar
    Karan Johar
    Apoorva Mehta
    Written by:
    Shakun Batra
    Ayesha Devitre Dhillon
    Rishi Kapoor as Amarjeet Kapoor (Dadu)
    Fawad Afzal Khan as Rahul Kapoor (Elder son)
    Ratna Pathak as Sunita Kapoor
    Rajat Kapoor as Harsh Kapoor
    Sidharth Malhotra as Arjun Kapoor (Younger son)
    Alia Bhatt as Tia Malik

    Finally a complete drama film with all the right ingredients from Bollywood.
    This film is not about a boy & a girl or a love triangle or parents & kids relationships etc. but is about all the characters in a family and how their relation ship is evolves through all the misunderstanding / doubts and conflicts.

    This Story is about a family that has a shameless grand father who is watching videos of Mandakini on tablet through out, a father who is struggling to provide for family after retirement, a mother who believes she can do much more but looks up for family support, a perfect son who is trying to live up to expectation and another not so perfect son who is a struggling to get to where his brother is and what happens when they all get together after 5 years.

    The Plot is not complicated its the character which are complex and move the story forward. Dialogues are ordinary but impact full and that is exactly what is required from a drama film. What I love about the movie is how it seems like our story. There was a moment in the film where Fawad Khan was trying to sort out issue between his Mom and Dad who were fighting and when his uncle asks is every thing Ok and he replies with so much calm that every thing is fine don't worry. Which reminded me how for every How are you? reply is always that we are fine regardless of what battles we might be fighting in side.

    Every single person in the movie has done justice to their roles but I would like to special mention Fawad Khan, Alia Bhatt and Rishi Kapoor who I believe have lived their role to the extent that I started to believe I am part of their family.They definitely deserve prominence next award season.

    Director has done a great job in taking the character through the not so complex plot and yet keeping a very realistic tone to the film. There is no over the top melo-drama and sentiments and that what will keep you engaged in movie.
    Music is superb and blends well with the film. 'Larki beautiful ker gaee chul' is still playing in my head.
    If you are looking for a masala movie with item numbers, extra ordinary lovers and emotional mother etc. this is not your film. Over all a great movie with good looking cast with great acting, superb music and perfect direction, such combinations are very rare in this genre and every one should experience at least once what they offer.

    Sunday, January 3, 2016

    Ho Mann Jahan - Movie Review

    Desi Rating : 4/5 stars
  • Mahira Khan as Manizeh
  • Adeel Hussain as Nadir
  • Sheheryar Munawar as Arhan
  • Sonya Jehan as Sabina
  • Bushra Ansari
  • Arshad Mahmud
  • Nimra Bucha as Shahida
  • Jamal Shah
  • Ahmed Ali Akbar
    A very refreshing intellectual movie, The kind of movies Lollywood is producing these days is very inspiring.
    This movie starts as a story of 3 friends straight out of university and their struggle with reality, priorities, relationships and passion. The theme is offcourse not new and has been explored in many different films like dil chahta hai , zindagi na mile gi dobara etc . Whats new in this film is that the story has been told from every perspective not only from the friends perspective but from the perspective of everyone associated with them.
    I will not say much about the story but Its a story of 3 different individuals with different backgrounds connected through their passion of music where one sacrifice passion for love and other sacrifice love for passion.
    very well written script and dialogues. Screenplay and editing gets confusing somewhere in the middle but it all comes together in the end.
    Pakistani movie has a feel of TV dramas which is obvious all the new guys coming in to film industry are transitioning from TV industry. As Bin Roye was a full on Hum tv drama and Yeh jawani phir nahin ani was a full on commercial film ,with this movie I guess the makers have achieved the right balance between a drama and a commercial film .
    Music is based on the hit formula of coke studio and songs are all picturized and placed in the movie perfectly. As soon as the audience sort of start losing interest the right situation/song glues you back to the film. Shakkar Wandan Re has all the potential to rock the Pakistani Wedding Season.
    Acting is superb all the actors have done justice to their characters. Especially it was really nice to see Bushra Ansari in a different role rather than typical saima chaudhry type of mother. Sonya Jahan looked amazingly pretty. Infact every one in the movie looked great good job with makeup and constume.
    Direction is also very neat, With better editing this movie could have achieved a higher class of cinema.
    Overall production is of international standards as well.
    For me it is a very intellectual yet entertaining film which will not teach you what is wrong or right but will teach how to create balance among all the right and wrongs we see around us.
    By the way have I mentioned little surprises that keep popping through out the movie.
    A must watch for all the mature audience.