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May 23, 2015 Saturday     
Tanu Weds Manu ReturnsIn business terms, its pretty safe to make a hit film’s sequel with the same star-cast and an already established theme approved by the majority of audience. But then writing an almost perfect sequel taking the story forward, introducing many new twists and turns surpassing the original is nothing less than a herculean triumph achieved by a talented team. Thankfully TANU WEDS MANU RETURNS can easily be included in the category of those rare sequels that do not let their originals down in any sense. And for many the film might turn out to be one step ahead than its initial part too due to their own loved sequences and characters.
To give you an honest opinion, the film is not a flawless venture as per its unconventional or unrealistic storyline dealing with divorce and re-marriage (discussed later). But giving the makers their much deserving credit, it never lets you think about the missing logic or flaws due to a highly entertaining progression right from the word go. And thus emerges as a thoroughly enjoyable family entertainer for all age groups especially from the related regions of Kanpur, Haryana and Punjab.
Beginning with the complete song “Sun Sahiba Sun” from Raj Kapoor’s RAM TERI GANGA MAILI (1985) being played along the typical marriage video coverage visuals on the screen, it sets the mood brilliantly and then keeps serving many highly enjoyable sequences till the next one hour with a well-paced story advancement introducing the fresh settings. There are witty one liners, realistic portrayals of smaller towns, superb performances and full ‘paisa-vasool’ entertainment in this electrifying opening hour, till an English song comes in putting the first brakes in the momentum going so strong. In short, TWMR proves to be a sure shot winner in its first half and for this the major credit goes to its talented director Anand L Rai and his writer Himanshu Sharma conceiving it so beautifully with the help of their exceptional cast ensemble.
Post intermission the pleasant surprises continue to come for the next 30 minutes but then admittedly the pace drops mainly due to a few unwanted songs and further plot complexities weakening the overall progression. The Chandigarh sequences (the kidnap) do not turn out to be that convincing as expected, plus the climax doesn’t deliver any surprises walking on the same set pattern earlier seen in numerous hit Hindi films based on love triangles. Yet what keeps you purely undisturbed and engrossed is the film’s charming treatment, entertaining (hilarious) dialogues and simply outstanding performances from every single person giving you a good time in the theater without any heavy melodrama or emotional sequences (that was in fact the key feature of its original). The golden oldie “Ja Ja Ja Ja Bewafa” from AAR PAAR (1954) gets incorporated beautifully towards the end and also for the first time one gets to see so many Sikh characters dressed in typical Gharba attire holding dandia sticks.
Cinematography and background score successfully maintain the required mood throughout and costumes certainly attract your attention depicting the diverse cultures (especially the Haryanvi ones). Musically the songs look pretty fine while watching the film, but the soundtrack surely misses that one big upbeat number as enjoyed in its first part. Still “Banno” inspired from a folk traditional track works well and so does “Main Ghani Bawari Ho Gayi” sung by Jyoti Nooran along with the innovative “Move On” and “Old School Girl”.
Coming to the biggest merit of the film, its performances, no doubt this is another ‘eye opener’ performance from the powerhouse called Kangna Ranuat, who keeps on delivering pleasant surprises one after another (including the dud REVOLVER RANI). The girl once again comes up with an act (rather double act) that is sure going to give many more sleepless nights to all big female stars of our Hindi cinema unarguably. Particularly her well adapted dialogue delivery and local accent playing Datto (the Haryanvi athlete) deserves to be included in her career best performances till date after QUEEN. Kangna truly leads the film with her hypnotic twin acts played to perfection and one simply cannot imagine any other girl playing these two contrastingly difficult roles in the same film so impactfully.
However another undeniable truth remains that TANU WEDS MANU RETURNS would not have been the same without Deepal Dobriyal posing as the backbone of almost all enjoyable sequences with his quick (superbly written) one liners and amusing comments. For instance just watch out the scene where in Madhavan’s father breaks the tubelight and he is just sitting between the father-son (and mother too constantly speaking in the backdrop), or the sequence where he at once poses as a crippled person in front of his long-time Sikh friend in the marriage pandal.
Along with Kangna and Deepak the third strong pillar of TWMR is Mohammed Zeeshan Ayyub giving a terrific performance as the unwanted tenant of the house. And then are the adorably cool and underplayed acts of R. Madhavan and Jimmy Sheirgill as the two leading stars of the film looking for their respective girls. Swara Bhaskar in her small role of Tanu’s best friend plays her part well and the same can be said about the entire supporting cast adding their own impressive bits in the enjoyable proceedings.
Talking about the illogical flaws (many friends would not be interested in), the film actually begins on a quite weird note where the couple is strangely discussing their divorce case in front of a team of people/doctors of a mental asylum or a psychiatric hospital (Now what they have to do with the divorce cases?). Further a person (Madhavan) is taken in as a sick case and then taken out as a normal man from the mental asylum so easily, as if it was a hotel where Madhavan had simply checked in for just a few days.
Secondly, the whole script unrealistically revolves around the second marriage of the hero and he is even shown going for the ‘Saat Pheras’ in the climax, whereas he has not even taken an official divorce from his earlier wife making it all illegal, against the marriage act.
Thirdly, there is a huge mess in age difference in the characters where at one end both Madhavan and Jimmy Sheirgill are probably 30-35 in age (as per the storyline) and Datto, the girl they are willing to marry studies in a college, putting her in the age group of 18-20, resulting in a big age difference of about 12-15 years between the couple.
Fourthly, the song “Main Ghani Bawari Ho Gayi” is surprisingly sung by the foreign returned Tanu in the film whereas the Haryanvi language is supposed to be the forte of Datto who is getting married at that specific time of the film. So we have strange role reversals in terms of language in this particular song.
Lastly and most importantly at one end Datto’s uncle (Rajesh Sharma) gives us the message of women liberation in the film, talking about their higher education, freedom and equal status in the society. But on the other is eagerly willing to marry his ‘young athlete’ niece of mere 18-20 years to an over-aged (30-35 years old), yet to be divorced person just after a few days of interaction so childishly (following the same old sick mindset of our society).
Anyhow as I mentioned above, the flaws are certainly there but they also need to be ignored for a change to enjoy the big positive features of the film offering you a great time in the theater. I personally enjoyed it a lot watching in a single screen premises where the viewers love to participate whole heartedly with their comments, seetis, taalis and laughs. Plus just one line from the film made me love the project even better, when Jimmy annoyingly says about Madhavan,
“Yaar Kamaal Ke Aadmi Hain, Original Bhi Inhi Ko Chahiye aur Duplicate Bhi Yahi Rakhenge”
In fact that was the key line of the film giving you the exact gist of its basic, well written idea of a double role. 
In all if you loved watching TANU WEDS MANU, then chances are that you would love TANU WEDS MANU RETURNS even more. But in case you find the emotional factor missing in this worth watching sequel, then also it will not disappoint you at all with enough in store fulfilling the basic needs of a viewer, of getting thoroughly entertained. So do opt for it at the earliest and have a great time.
Rating : 3.5 + 0.5 / 5 (Including an additional 0.5 for the beautiful insertion of two golden songs of the past “Sun Sahiba Sun” and  “Ja Ja Ja Ja Bewafa” in the film)
Tags : Tanu Weds Manu Returns Review by Bobby Sing, TWMR Movie Review By Bobby Sing, Worth Watching Sequel, Kangna Best Performances, 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
22 May 2015 / bobbysing /
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Watching lesser known, meaningful or award winning movies in the film festivals organized by various authorities has been a part of my passionate love for cinema since decades. But what I experienced watching two Kannada films together in the National Film Festival 2015 held at Sri Fort Auditorium, New Delhi, was pleasantly the most satisfying as well as shocking experience till date, expressing it honestly.
HarivuGiving you a brief introduction of these gems, HARIVU (meaning The Flow) was the first film in the afternoon that began with some thoughtful sequences showcasing two fathers (one of them being a poor farmer) and their sons of different age groups in its initial sequences. But then, it ended leaving every single person sitting in the theatre with moist eyes and a crying heart that could be seen clearly as the lights came back. Admitting it frankly, I am still finding tough to pen down even a paragraph as HARIVU’s awaited review. Yet, would like to convey the power of this disturbing, cinematic classic in a line, that had the director Manso Re been there in the theater at the time of its screening, I would have certainly rushed to hug him, congratulating for making such an emotional masterpiece of our present times.
In honest words, it was not easy to recover from the upsetting impact of HARIVU in those few hours after its end credits stopped rolling. But since I didn’t wish to let go the opportunity of watching another award winning gem being played next, I entered the theater again to witness the second extraordinary effort made by the entire team with the title NANU AVANALLA AVALU (meaning I am not a He, but She).
Naanu-Avanalla-AvaluBased on the real life account of an artist/activist (Living Smile Vidya) who himself decided to live as a woman instead of a man, the film is simply a stunner in terms of performances, execution and realistic depiction of the tough, neglected life of eunuchs. In short the moment, its lead performer gets introduced as an adult, he grabs your complete attention strongly and never lets you take eyes off the screen to say the least. And while walking out of the theater, I was simply forced to think, that how could he even do all that in front of the camera with so much ease, perfection and conviction. No doubt the man got the Best Actor National award of the year as an actor representing Kannada Cinema (after a long time) quite deservingly.
Now coming to the most astonishing part of the write-up, watching these two amazing cinematic gems in a day was certainly a highly satisfying experience for a mad movie-buff like myself. Plus it was great to know that both the Kannada films had won prestigious awards at the 62n National Film Awards with HARIVU fetching ‘The Best Kannada Film’ and NANU AVANALLA AVALU getting ‘The Best Make Up Artist’ and the reputed ‘Best Actor Award’ given to Sanchari Vijay for his eye-opening, unbelievable kind of performance as a transgender.
Still somehow the gifted actor of the second film was the only one playing with my mind while walking back to the metro station in late hours of the evening, when suddenly I got the insight or the realization which I hadn’t got in the entire day while watching both the film’s together.
And the insight was that it was the same actor, yes, it was the same actor playing the lead role in both the films HARIVU as well as NANU AVANALLA AVALU and I truly couldn’t get that. I simply couldn’t recognize that the sad, silent, traumatized farmer of HARIVU was the same person playing the unbelievably realistic transgender or the eunuch in NANU AVANALLA AVALU too so effortlessly.
In other words, the actor par excellence Sanchari Vijay, truly deceived me with his two different acts in entirely contrasting films seen one after another and that had never happened before in more than three decades of my movie watching experience, accepting the clear defeat.
Yes, the two films being from an unknown language, region and cast might be the reason for this rare instance of missing the connecting link. But in all honesty Sanchari Vijay genuinely became the winner here with his two out of the world, distinctive performances getting deep into the skin of his given characters as very few artists have proved to be capable of.
Hence the actor admittedly taught me a good lesson of cinema that day since I simply couldn’t catch that the eunuch performing those typical claps and smiles on the screen was the same farmer of HARIVU fighting with his ill fate.
And for this both Sanchari Vijay and his directors (Manso Re & B. S. Lingdevaru) rightly deserve a big, respectable salute from Bobbytalkscinema.com indeed.
Tags : Never Before Cinematic Experience, Articles on Cinema by Bobby Sing at bobbytalkscinema.com. HARIVU and NANU AVANALLA AVALU, Kannasa Award Winning Films, National Award Winning Kannada Regional films, Worth Watching Cinema, Must Watch Indian Regional Cinema.
18 May 2015 / bobbysing /
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Anurag Kashyap (the man whose two films as a director and more than four films as a writer already there in the ‘Movies To See Before You Die’ List at BTC), is widely known for his bold and disturbing off-beat movies that mostly struggle at the box office in search of some decent returns. Hence to break this set pattern of his career, he desperately wanted to take a big leap by making a commercial box office success with BOMBAY VELVET setting some new records in the trade. Luckily he got all his big finances delivered, a reputed cast enrolled and an exceptionally talented technical crew at his disposal too, ready to help him deliver a polished finished product to win over the viewers.
But unfortunately Anurag couldn’t get the mathematics of Hindi commercial cinema right in his calculations, resulting in a completely avoidable product that simply fails to connect with the viewers in its entire duration of 150 minutes showcasing a lot of overplay, over confidence and visible pressure of delivering a ‘made to order’ classic.
However to begin with the positives associated with the project, BOMBAY VELVET does get its time period graphics worked upon perfectly well supported by a fine cinematography and an energetic background score. It has a splendid show of lighting, costumes and set designing enhancing the visual impact on the screen, setting up the desired mood along with the ‘jazz’ notes. Plus the performances are mostly intense getting into their given characters passionately. Yet the most important factor missing in the film remains ‘the instant connect with the viewers’ that isn’t visible right from its first sequence to the last, which has to be the prime concern of a director making a Hindi commercial film to entertain his wide audience.
To give you a precise idea, it honestly gives me immense pain when I have to pull down such a movie wherein hundreds of talented technicians have worked together so hard to the best of their ability for so many months or even years.
But then, if you are really talking about commercial Hindi cinema specifically made to entertain the masses then you got to know that how many of them actually go to watch a movie for its technical excellence, sets, lighting, cinematography, costumes and more?
How many of them are really familiar with the names of Martin Scorsese, Brian De Palma, Al Pacino and others favourites of the directors, influencing the overall treatment of the movie more than required?
How many of them can really cherish the ‘JAZZ’ tone of most of the songs and the weird lyrics like “Dhobi Ka Kutta”, “Yeh Kya Kiya Syliva”, “Dhadaam Dhadaam” and more.
And how many of them are supposed to enjoy a Yash Chopra/Manmohan Desai kind of script (revolving around an underdog winner, smugglers and politicians) presented in the form of ‘a festival product’ following the deep, dark patterns of ‘world cinema’.
Sadly (and unexpectedly) while making his so called time-period classic talking about nothing new, Anurag completely forgets about his actual ‘Target Audience’. The people who want ample quantity of everything put into their plates of entertainment as was perfectly done by the likes of Manmohan Desai, Prakash Mehra, Yash Chopra and more successful directors of 70s.
In other words, if I put up a question that, “Can there be a Hindi commercial movie conceived without any sufficient dosage of action, humour, love or emotional connect with the viewers?” Then the answer has to be NO unarguably.
But here director Anurag Kashayp strangely makes a vague attempt to win over the common man or the masses with NO enjoyable action, NO humor in the entire duration and NO love or emotional pull in its lead pair having an affair heading towards Nowhere. Yet why he still insists of calling this as an attempt to venture into the commercial cinema remains out of my understanding. Moreover who keeps a name such as BOMBAY VELVET if one wishes his film to reach the masses as a pure commercial venture? In fact in my opinion Anurag’s GANGS OF WASSEYPUR series had more power to influence every single person of our country than this colossal disappointment called BOMBAY VELVET.
Coming to its clichéd choice of subject (based on Gyan Prakash's book 'Mumbai Fables'), the storyline has no steady progression making any impression whatsoever on the viewer. And it was really hilarious to see the reservations the makers had giving more time to the poverty, mill workers and the strikes that happened to be an important part of the life lived in that particular time period. May be it was on the strict instructions of the corporate production house that just keep your focus on stars, clubs, smugglers, police or politicians and that’s it.
In straight words, nothing worked for me in the film apart from its technical excellence achieved, a couple of good tracks including ‘Behrupia’ (but not the oldie remix), the laughing scene of Karan and a few enjoyable moments provided by Kay Kay Menon. Neither Ranbir’s Al Pacino inspired looks could do some good to the film, nor Amitabh’s NASEEB inspired fight sequences could add the much needed thrills to its uninteresting sequences. In addition both Anushka and Karan Johar acts also turned out to be strictly okay with nothing exceptional as was being conveyed before the film’s release.
Anyway keeping my personal opinion aside, what can be more authentic than the public views heard within the single screen theater becoming the final verdict of the viewers. And here is what they had to say at various points of BV mentioned below:
After almost 45-50 minutes into the film, when nothing was there in terms of action then a person from the first rows shouted, “O Ranbir Bhai,……..Kucch Kar To Sahi…..!”. And this was almost the same outburst I last heard in ROY.
Just before the interval, when the proceedings became further dull, a voice came from my back “OSCAR Ke Liye Jaayegi Yeh Pacca………..Wohi Dekhenge!”
Post intermission, the moment Anushka sang these words, “Dawa Na Kaam Aaye”, there came loud laughter from different corners of the theater.
And then more laughs came in as Karan Johar delivered the most hilarious line of the film as, “Tumne Rozy Mein Aisa Kya Dekha, Jo Mujhmein Nahin Hai!”
Overall, if this was Anurag Kashyap’s ambitious dream of directing a complete commercial film for the masses, then I would request him to please wake up from your sleep and get back to making your own kind of cinema forgetting this major failure. But since now he has discovered a new kind of association with people who actually CONSTRUCT Hits rather than MAKING films, I seriously get worried about what he will be directing next and targeting whom sitting in the theaters, spending their hard earned money on the tickets.
Rating : 1.5 / 5 (Including 1 for its technical excellence, few songs and background score)
Tags : Bombay Velvet Review by Bobby Sing, Bombay Velvet Movie Review, 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
15 May 2015 / bobbysing /
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