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April 19, 2014 Saturday     
In the last few decades, both Western & Hindi cinema have acquired mastery over one major feature in their films, regarding the chosen subjects. Where the foreign film-makers have mastered the art of working on new stories, novel plots and fresh ideas constantly, there Indian film-makers have acquired excellence in telling the same story again and again in a new entertaining avatar repeatedly, which indeed is an amazing achievement as I feel (pun intended). Strengthening the same fact, 2 STATES comes up as an another example of those few films, which despite having nothing new to say in its main plotline, still successfully manages to keep you entertained in parts and does have some lovable freshness in its overall execution, thankfully.
No doubt, 2 STATES biggest drawback remains the same old love-story between two diverse regional characters as earlier seen in EK DUJE KE LIYE, BOMBAY and the recent VICKY DONOR too, along with a pinching length unnecessarily stretching to 150+ minutes. Yet the film offers a fresh first hour which remains truly enjoyable with the adorable Alia Bhatt surprising you yet again, well supported by some fabulous small performances from the entire cast. And thus it cannot be pulled down just for the sake of writing a critical review with a negative approach to say the truth. Moreover, the progressive take on the subject certainly puts the movie much ahead than all the previous ones both in terms of love, understanding and sex too, portraying it very realistically as per the new-age casual norms.
For instance, following the western thought process, here too the couple jumps into the bed and gets over with the sex-part quickly in the first 30 minutes itself without any regret, fear or hesitation. In other words, they instantly check that whether there so called love, still remains intact after experiencing the lust & sex part too or not? And since the feeling is still there, the couple rightly decides to get married despite having their big cultural disparities of language and region. The impressive content around the ‘College Campus’ continues till the two families meet and its only after the intermission that too many stretched, avoidable and clichéd sequences regularly hamper the pace of the movie unfortunately. In fact the film keeps dropping and picking up repeatedly till its final scene, resulting in a mixed kind of feeling altogether.
Based on Chetan Bhagat’s bestseller “2 States : The Story of My Marriage” its storyline was clearly revealed in the trailers itself. But as I felt the book/script intelligently followed the famous DDLJ plot too, exploiting it from both the possible perspectives, in its two halves. In more clear words, in the first half it’s the boy winning the girl’s family through his generous acts and post interval it’s the girl winning the boy’s family members with her intelligent gestures as required for their love marriage. Plus the kitchen scene also reminded me the one from Tinnu Anand’s KAALIA featuring Parveen Babi, Asha Parekh and Amitabh Bachchan. So, if the book was really an autobiographical one (as it is said) then that certainly was a very amusing yet filmy time lived by the renowned writer in his young years (although I still doubt that the campus allows this kind of liberty ever for its students).
As an adaptation, director Abhishek Varman stays completely faithful to the book, portraying it well in a marginally entertaining style. Cleverly showing the two distinctive cultures mainly through visuals and regional dialogues, he doesn’t add any comic gimmicks in the narration, as normally seen in such typical subjects. Still in the final hour it does look like as if you are watching (reading) a long sequence of a novel, instead of a crisp scene of a finely scripted film. Therefore a more cruel editing could have given the film a much better shape, making a more solid impact on the viewer undoubtedly.
Representing a Karan Johar production, the repetitive Punjabi wedding sequence is there in 2 STATES too showing Punjabi community in a bad light. Further a mediocre soundtrack can also be stated as another downer in this otherwise fine film based on a stale plot. To point out the bloopers, I would like to add that the phrase “Vai Vai” is not something used in Punjabi expressions and the word “Locha-E-Ulfat” was really awful, mixing the tapori slang with rich Urdu language, carelessly. In fact with each such new-age film having below average music, it seems we are fast losing on to the rich melodious music we were once known for in the past. The film gets a big support from an eye-pleasing cinematography, fine background score and few entertaining dialogues conveying the various emotions aptly. Whereas the director and his writers could have compiled it all in a much shorter format in only 120-125 minutes as required.
Coming to the acting part, its actually the performances which add a lot of freshness in its all seen before plot, saving it from becoming a boring love story clearly. Alia Bhatt remains at the top impressing everyone with another gem of a (light-hearted) performance post HIGHWAY and she is really a delight to watch, especially in the first half, even when she doesn’t look like an authentic girl from the South. Arjun Kapoor certainly shows big signs of improvement and comes up with a bright, effortless performance after some over-the-top acts in his previous films. But I was really wondering why he was using a type-writer for his writing when he very well knew how to use computer and could even make a power-point presentation for his father-in-law to impress him.
Supported by many lovable acts by the rest of the cast, 2 STATES has a flawless Amrita Singh, a fantastic Revathy, a sincere Shiv Subramanyam, an entertaining Achint Kaur and a first rate Ronit Roy who truly shines in the final moments of the film as the caring father.
In all, despite having a seen before storyline, a predictable plot and a painfully lengthy duration, 2 STATES still remains partially enjoyable due to an extremely fresh first hour, a perfect casting and many wonderful small performances deserving to be seen at least once.
However I would like to end the review, addressing the Punjabi community in particular since the film should be a real eye opener for them in an alarming manner. Reason being the way, Punjabi Community and its people have been portrayed in the film as some loud, out-spoken, drunkard, greedy, big dowry-demanding ones (with the most irritating mother-in-laws), believing in fake show-offs in their social lives. And I am not blaming the makers or the writer Chetan Bhagat, for showing them in such a bad light because many people do believe in this kind of character-description only when it comes to the Punjabi community in reality. Whereas the truth is that a Punjabi is supposed to be a completely different person from the one shown in the film, believing in equality, togetherness and HIS will i.e. ‘Almighty’s Raza’ without any fear.
Now why Punjabi’s are being associated with these kinds of characteristics here, is an important question the community needs to think upon seriously!
But for the rest, 2 STATES can easily be rated as a partially entertaining one time watch with the charmingly brilliant Alia Bhatt & the other members of her two diverse families.
Rating : 2.5 + 0.5 / 5 (With the additional 0.5 just for Amrita Singh, Revathy & Ronit Roy)


Tags : 2 States Review By Bobby Sing, 2 States Movie Review By Bobby Singh, New Hindi Films Reviews By Bobby Sing at bobbytalkscinema.com, Bollywood Movies Reviews at bobbytalkscinema.com, Bobby Sing Bollywood Reviews, New Bollywood Movies Reviews, New Bollywood Movies Released, New Hindi Films Reviews, New Hindi Movies Reviews, New Hindi Movies Released, New Bollywood Reviews, Bobby Talks Cinema Review, Reviews By Bobby Sing, New Hindi Films Reviews at bobbytalkscinema.com
18 April 2014 / bobbysing /
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Prahaar - Bobby Talks Cinena,com

There have been some rare instances in Hindi cinema, when a director has not made a film just as a part of his bright career, hasn’t made it for any expected returns and was not looking for any major commercial success either defying the usual industry trend. Films made when the director personally wished to say something significant or give something back to his loving fans which might help them to grow and live a better life. PRAHAAR stands tall among such highly appreciable attempts in Hindi films, which till date remains the only directorial venture of the hugely famous writer-actor-director Nana Patekar. And the thinking actor made this movie just for his own countrymen with a specific social message that we constantly need to fight with the enemy existing within our crumbling society first, before fighting the one attacking the political borders.
Beginning with a one line theme saying ‘A Soldier never quits till he is dead”, the film travels a full circle journey and ends on a highly thoughtful note, beautifully conceived by the director with hundreds of nude kids running along the main protagonist as a symbol of universality and equality among all fellow beings. Having a brilliantly structured script (in four major parts) it makes an important sarcastic comment on the new mean perceptions of life followed by majority of people wherein they do tend to behave as cowards most of the times undeniably.
In the first part of the script, Nana takes you onto the tough journey of military training camps where the young boys are being turned into courageous military men. The authentic commando training scenes in the film are really a treat to watch especially when Nana first performs every difficult task given to the boys himself, to set an example. And believe me, there are not many in the industry who could have done that in such an unbelievable manner without any graphic or camera tricks.
In the second section, it very insightfully shows how the commando training proves useful in fighting the inner enemies of the country too, attacking in the form of terrorists, criminals and underworld mafia. The trained boys rescue a kidnapped school bus from the extremists, which though could have been shot in a much better way (avoiding too many dark scenes) but still adds a lot to the film’s fine build-up altogether.
Returning to the realistic social life, the third part showcases how a common man avoids confronting the bad elements fearing the drastic consequences and instead pays a small amount to buy his family’s peace regularly, posing as a coward. The questionable pattern of living is explained in the words of the elderly man when he says that “We do not fight these goons as we are supposed to be decent people”. But unfortunately Peter, the brightest commando trained by Major Chavhan, has to pay a price for the revolt expressed, which changes the life of every single person related to him unexpectedly.
The final section shockingly deals with how a reputed Army Major tackles this social evil taking it personal and doesn’t feel any regret in going for the extreme solution possible making some brutal killings. So the battlefield changes in this particular part, depicting the need of a strong defense mechanism to be applied both within as well as at the political border of a country unconditionally. And it’s these two concluding sections of the film only which have numerous scenes to hit you real hard and the talented cast perfectly plays them all with sheer excellence, worth experiencing.
For instance,
a. The most crucial scene of the film is when Habib Tanvir slaps Nana saying that your Military training brainwashed my child teaching him how to revolt resulting in his death, otherwise we were all living peacefully before that.
b. The change of character of Madhuri Dixit from a loud, talkative girl to a silent, lost person after the tragic event is portrayed intensely.
c. The shocking sequence wherein the spectators start throwing stones at the Major who is fighting with the goons for their rights only, causing the emotional outburst of Dimple shouting helplessly, really makes you sit back and think.
d. And lastly the final scene of the film wherein Nana is running along hundreds of nude kids, which was later censored for the film’s TV broadcast too (as I can remember) certainly comes up as one of the most thoughtful scene ever incorporated in a Hindi film.

Equipped with a well-designed Background Score using the compassionate alaaps, PRAHAAR also has a soothing waltz number “Dhadkan Zara Rukh Gayi Hai” with a fine mouthorgan musical piece too used beautifully.
A story written by Nana Patekar himself, the film effectively conveys a message that perhaps people are just worried about themselves and their families only following a mean or coward way of living which cannot ever result in a healthy society. Because a just-social system can only exist when a person starts thinking & caring about the other too and doesn’t try to skip the problem just because it is not related to him or his loved ones directly. It also raises a very important and debatable point that probably one year of army training should ideally be made compulsory for every citizen of the country to realize his own potential, physical capability and the mental ability in order to fulfill his major social responsibilities.
On a concluding note, PRAHAAR is an important film of Hindi cinema as they don’t make films like these anymore and therefore its producer Sudhakar Bokade surely deserves praises for backing up this non-commercial venture way back in the year 1991. With a hope that Nana Patekar soon finds another Sudhakar Bokade for financing his second film, I would recommend PRAHAAR especially to all the young ones in particular, since the film does have the elements which might help you in becoming a more responsible human being living in this fast collapsing social structure around.
Story, Screenplay & Directed By Nana Patekar
Starring : Nana Patekar, Dimple Kapadia, Madhuri Dixit, Habib Tanvir, Gautam Joglekar, Makrand Deshpande and more.
Music : Laxmikant Pyarelal
Tags : Prahaar (1991), Movies To See Before You Die Thriller Drama, Most Thoughtful films In Hindi Cinema, Must Watch Films List by Bobby Sing, Worth Watching Classics List By Bobby Sing, Not To Be Missed Movies List By Bobby Singh, Directed by Nana Patekar, Madhuri Dixit without makeup, Prahaar means Hitting Hard.
16 April 2014 / bobbysing /
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Adaminte Makan Abu - Bobby Talks Cinema.com

Set in a rural village of Kerela, telling the story of Abu and Aisumma, an aging Muslim couple struggling hard to cope with the changing phases of life, this is an original and beautiful piece of art worth experiencing.
The loving couple aspires to go for Hajj pilgrimage for which they keep saving a good part out of their limited income and go on sacrificing a lot in their daily lives to achieve the holy aim. Knowing their only wish a few non-Muslim friends of the couple, do offer their humble contribution for the same representing the social harmony. But Abu, being a true Muslim, wishes to go for Hajj with his own hard earned money only as per the Islamic directions. Along with caring wife Aisumma, Abu tries his best to arrange for everything required to fulfill their last desire and the film ends on a highly emotional note bringing tears into your eyes and a smile too understanding their painful acceptance with love.
Revolving around the core theme of Hajj, its not that one needs to be a Muslim to understand or reach the depth of that elderly couple’s only wish as it may seem. Because deep down, our souls do not belong to any specific religion and they can compassionately feel both love as well as the pain for the other, irrespective of any faith, colour or region. Therefore the moment it ends on a sensitive note, all you have in mind is its lead character Abu and his truthful following of Islam, adoringly supported by an equally lovable wife forming a blissful couple.
Written, directed & co-produced by the debutant Salim Ahamed, the film strongly brings forward the need and importance of watching Indian Regional Movies by any movie buff living all over the globe. There are no lavish production values, no inviting glamour, no foreign locations and nothing inserted just for the sake of increasing the commercial value. Yet it subtly teaches you how film-making is actually supposed to be the art of story-telling adding something to your otherwise routine life, urgently. With a soothing background score, apt music and cinematography, Adaminte Makan Abu (Abu, Son of Adam) is a highly authentic work, deserving much more appreciation from the viewers carving for great cinema.
Featuring Salim Kumar and Zarina Wahab in the lead roles acting superbly along with a talented supporting cast, the film won several awards at Kerala State Awards and was also given four National Film Awards in 2011 namely Best Film, Best Actor (Salim Kumar as Abu), Best Cinematography and Best Background Score. It was India's official entry in the Best Foreign Language Film Category for the Academy Awards in 2011 but was sadly not nominated for the final contenders. So if you do wish to see something highly original and meaningful truly representing the real Indian heart, then go for this lesser known classic as a must. And I am sure after watching the final moments of the film you would be on the net, looking for more similar gems from the regional movies as a sincere appreciator of cinema as it should be. 
In few words, Adaminte Makan Abu is certainly one of those few beautiful films which leave you emotionally enriched and a better human, caring about the others along with following your own individual faith, truthfully.
Written & Directed By Salim Ahmed
Starring : Salim Kumar, Zareena Wahab, M.R. Gopakumar, Jaffer Idukki and more.
Tags : Adaminte Makan Abu (2011 Malayalam), Movies To See Before You Die Drama, Enriching Movies, Best Indian Movies List, Worth Watching Movies List by Bobby Sing, Not To Be Missed Films List by Bobby Sing, Indian Films at Oscars
14 April 2014 / bobbysing /
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