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Bollywood – Problem of Plenty – 90 films lined up for release

June 15, 2009


By ASHISH MITRA Team (13 June 2009 5:45 pm) MUMBAI: The Bollywood strike may have ended, but the door has opened for a problem of plenty as producers rush for a release pipeline. More than 90 films are lined up for release in exactly 30 week’s time before the year ends. That means an average of three releases per week to accommodate a stockpile, spurring producers to work out plans to beat the clutter and avoid internal clashes so as to maximise revenue for all. Read more.

Producer-Multiplex feud resolved

June 15, 2009

Mumbai: From my office window I am looking down on one of the FAME cinemas. For more than a month the frontal side was adorned by the poster of a single film: “99”.

Now after the four months of negotiations and two months of strike in which Read more…

FR 15 – Anurag Kashyap’s DEV D – Article Coming Soon

June 15, 2009

FR 14 – BILLU BARBER (2009) – Article Coming Soon

June 15, 2009

FR 13 – ME SHIVAJI RAJE BHOSALE BOLTOY (Marathi) (2009) – The Return of the King

May 3, 2009

Mad Professor Marks: 6.5 out of 10

Although the idea is taken from LAGE RAHO MUNNABHAI, the solid execution of the idea makes it still the best Marathi film of 2009 so far.

In LAGE RAHO the spirit of Gandhi appeared to a love-sick mafiosi and in ME SHIVAJI RAJE BHOSALE BOLTOY (MSRBB) it is the spirit of legendary Maharashtrian 17th century king Shivaji Maharaj who first blasts and then inspires bank clerk Dinkar Bhosle , a typical middleclass Marathi Manoo who curses his fate of having been born a Maharashtrian. Although the script uses several clichés like the corrupt cop, underworld threats and a pre-climax typically set in the villain’s godown, the solid performance by Mahesh Manjrekar as King Shivaji, the brilliant performance by Sachin Khedekar as Dinkar Bhosle and the insightful dialogues by Mahesh Manjrekar/Sanjay Pawar make this film – at least for an Indian and NRI-audience – highly enjoyable! Difficult to say if it works for a Non-Indian audience… Would be happy to receive your feedback!

FR 12 – GULAAL (2009) – Long live the Revolution!

May 3, 2009

Mad Professor Marks: 7 out of 10

What?! Enfant Terrible Anurag Kashyap’s DEV D, a modern take on Sarat Chandra Chattopadhyay’s classic Bengal novel Devdas got released 6th Feb and GULAAL on 13th March? Is this guy ever sleeping??! This release date is due to the fact that GULAAL was completed 2006 (!!) and its release delayed for various reasons.

GULAAL tells the story of a separitist movement in the fictitious town Rajpur, student politics, power struggle and betrayal. Kay Kay Menon as Dukey Bana is so sensationally good that many industry insiders believe that if GULAAL would have been released in 2006 not only Kay Kay Menon’s career would have taken off in a much different way but it would even left its impact on the entire industry and many young filmmakers. Three years later GULAAL has arrived. For India’s young generation the work of Anurag Kashyap and Vishal Bhardwaj (MAQBOOL, OMKARA) is the future of Indian filmmaking, other viewers – like most of my Western friends – do prefer old-fashioned/emotional films like RAB NE BANA DI JODI when it comes to Hindi films – as a change to the Western diet.  The choice is all yours.

FR 11 – Zoya Akthar’s LUCK BY CHANCE (2009) – Aspiring, perspiring

May 3, 2009

Mad Professor Marks: 7.5 out of 10

Javeed Akthar and Saleem Khan became the first rockstars of Indian scriptwriting way back in the 70s when they made Amitabh Bachchan into India’s Young Angry Man.  As the legacy continues Javeed Akthar’s son Farhan came out with rockin’ debut DIL CHAHTA HAI as director/writer  in 2001, and then went on to become a celluloid rockstar, playing one of the lead roles in last year’s ROCK ON. Farhan’s elder sister Zoya casts in her debut as director/writer lil Farhan and there comes a comedy which is not so much a satire on Bollywood as it is the emotional journey of aspiring actor Vikram/Farhan who comes to Mumbai to make it big time. The fantastic Konkorna Sen Sharma plays the female lead.

Bollywood-Star Hrithik Roshan plays Bollywood-Star Zaffar Khan. Bollywood stars and filmmakers including Aamir Khan, Sharukh Khan, Boman Irani, Rani Mukherjee, Abhishek Bachchan, John Abraham, Kareena Kapoor, Vivek Oberoi, Akshaya Khanna, Diya, Mirza, Shabana Azmi, Ranbir Kapoor and Rajkumar Hirani, Karan Johar make cameo appearances as themselves, Anurag Kashyap plays an aspiring scriptwriter.

LUCK BY CHANCE is Zoya Akthar’s debut but her story-telling is that of maturity and that of a fine irony. Several times it examines the Hindi film industry from an angle of feminine insight but even there with a certain feeling of detachment. Zoya Akthar knows her  two main characters through and through. Her heart-felt direction when it comes to her two protagonists, struggling actors Farhan Akthar and Konkorna Sen Sharma, is smoothly interlocked with the ironic view on the industry. The score by Shankar- Ehsaan-Loy is good but not outstanding and the dialogues/lyrics were written by Zoya Akthar’s father Javeed Akthar.

LUCK BY CHANCE is a very welcome change to the usual Bollywood diet with several hilarious moments and a strongly emotional main plot and marks the debut of a filmmaker to be looked out for.