BARKHAA, the debut film of director Shadaab Mirza featuring a lesser known cast is another of those wrongly promoted films focusing on sex alone. The film’s posters and publicity campaign deliberately tried to project it like an erotica whereas it doesn’t even have a single good sensual scene to serve the same.
Revolving around the life of a ‘bar dancer’ (supposedly inspired from real life events), BARKHAA shows the sign of an amateur attempt right from it first scene itself, where in a book launch event scene, the book being read is in Hindi but its visible cover design is mainly in English. The same flawed vision continues throughout the film as the writer-director fails to define the continuity between the past and present sequences with any logical clarity and wastes a good 35-40 minutes in the beginning just to establish the romance factor without revealing anything about its main story-plot. So in the first hour, you just have a film with a decent social subject, few songs much better than many big duds and a devotional qawwali used beautifully in a sequence just before the interval.
In the second half, though the good twists and turns in the storyline keep the interest alive, it’s the execution that doesn’t let the film excel in any department and the director tackles everything too casually without caring much about the links or the required reasoning. Few of the experienced performers try their best to lift up the film in their allotted scenes (like in the bar-raid sequence followed by the confrontation within the police station) but the questionable script progression lets them down repeatedly ruining their visible efforts.
Playing the lead as Barkhaa, Sara Loren enacts the tough role too simply without any wide range of expressions that actually breaks the backbone of the film’s emotional storyline. Taaha Shah tries hard but doesn’t get anything great to display in his badly written (lead) role, plus its really amazing to see how the director uses the dependable Priyanshu Chatterjee in such a careless manner as the hero’s guilty elder brother. Puneet Issar keeps doing his routine father-act as usual, but the two talented actors who make a few scenes worth watching are Ashiesh Roy (as the Bar owner) and Shweta Pandit as Barkhaa’s close friend who truly cares for her. In fact Shweta easily leads many key scenes looking even more beautiful than Sara and Ashiesh easily wins your heart as an emotionally concerned employer.
With a strictly average editing and background score BARKHAA gets a good support from its cinematography and music department having a few fine songs as compared to the poor soundtrack of many famous biggies. Particular the way a devotional track “Man Kunto Maula” has been used in the film surely deserves a special mention here among the rest. In short, despite being based on the life of a Bar Girl (who are not essentially Sex workers), BARKHAA has been wrongly promoted as an erotic film misguiding the viewers and has a fresh interesting plot that could have been dealt with much more maturity and emotional depth.
Interestingly the film made me recall a similar real life incident shown in one the Crime based TV serials a few months back that looked like a great potential plot for an engaging feature film. And here we have BARKHAA made on the same but not with the required polished execution unfortunately.
Rating : 1.5 + 0.5 / 5 (with the additional 0.5 just for the way it uses the track “Man Kunto Maula” both before the interval and in the climax.)
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There was a time when a film called KHOSLA KA GHOSLA was struggling to get a decent theatrical release reaching the ultimate audience. And now is the time when the same ‘once unknown film’ is being followed by numerous ‘average to poor’ clones trying to somehow repeat the success story, redefining the power in the concept of Destiny.
Joining the same crew DILLIWALI ZAALIM GIRLFRIEND is another misdirected film made on the similar pattern of KKG wherein the ‘plot of land’ is replaced by ‘a car’ and the key character of “Khurana i.e. Boman Irani” is replaced by Jackie Shroff playing a Punjabi businessman quite amateurishly. In fact the weakest link of the film remains Shroff, a complete misfit for the character right from the word Go.
Beginning with a short medley having the credits, the first thing that starts annoying you in DZG (within the opening 5 minutes only) is its loud background score heavily relying on the Punjabi beats having no relation to the proceedings whatsoever. The forcibly used Delhi lingo, the easily predictable routine plot and the poor show by the bank lady (in the initial sequences) straight away reveals the mediocre content coming next. But the film surprisingly falls to much lower levels featuring the songs being there exactly when they were least required creating a hilarious situation, like the sad one thrown in right after the scene where the hero loses his brand new car and doesn’t know what to do. Moreover it becomes even worse when you notice the ‘lip-sync’ completely out in the most famous track of the film composed and performed by Yo Yo Honey Singh (with Alfaz).
Post intermission director Japinder Kaur desperately tries to impress the viewers with more vague insertions like the sequence shot at Gurdwara Bangla Sahib in Delhi and offers only one or two entertaining sequences in the final hour (that too not featuring anyone from the lead cast). The story dealing with a con and sting operations planned against Jackie Shroff is written so boringly (read childishly) that you feel like leaving the theater much before the film is officially over. Nevertheless the three otherwise good actors namely Divyendu Sharma, Pradhuman Singh and Ira Dubey keep trying hard to somehow save the film with their visible efforts (made in vain) but the terribly bad Jackie Shroff never allows them to do so in the entire two hours pathetically.
As per the new guidelines, Censor once again mutes all the cuss words used in the dialogues, that doesn’t seem to be an unjustified act this time, since the writers have simply inserted those words to create a silly-funny impact that falls flat pretty badly. However it was quite weird to see a black patch pasted on the hands of characters showing their middle figure raising a valid question that what’s possibly coming next from the Censor board in the name of moral policing.
In all, despite having some catchy party tracks in its multi-composer soundtrack that possibly were responsible of bringing in the young crowd in its first show itself, DILLIWALI ZAALIM GIRLFRIEND is not worth your valuable time and money, even in a free play on the cable to say it all.
Rating : 1 / 5 (Just for few noticeable party tracks in its soundtrack)
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The three phase story begins with the teenage kid exploring the sexual pleasures for the first time through some hidden experiences. It reaches the youth when the need becomes even stronger looking at the smiling girls leading to an amateur affair. And then features the years of mature freedom resulting in another intense relationship heading towards an emotional finale.
That’s the basic premise of the latest release HUNTERRR & its core subject certainly makes us recall a cult Hindi classic film that also dealt with an emotional biographical account of an adorable loving soul and the three beautiful ladies in the various phases of his lonely life craving for togetherness. But at the same time the thought also forces us to realise the huge difference between the contrasting visions of the two eras wherein perhaps Love has been replaced by Sex and ‘Emotional Trustworthy Affairs’ have been replaced by ‘CarelessOne Night Stands” quite evidently.
The film one recalls instantly while watching HUNTERRR is the showman Raj Kapoor’sMERA NAAM JOKER (1970) that remained completely focused on heartfelt emotions, trust & love including a worth praising, insightful depiction of the age of adolescence, that till date is considered as a benchmark achievement in our Indian cinema without any doubt.
Interestingly, revolving around the life of a sex maniac and his timely (sexual) encounters with three particular women (out of many), HUNTERRR exactly follows the same path as MERA NAAM JOKER but on a visibly much lower level relating its every single sequence with just Sex & Lust alone instead of Love.
Following a similar vision, it also begins with good 30 minutes devoted to the kids and their first sexual experiences that are enjoyable to watch. But the vision maestro Raj Kapoor displayed in his epic timeless creation, unarguably remains miles ahead having a deep psychological impact on the viewers of all age groups even today (after more than four decades). Moreover just like MERA NAAM JOKER, the most appreciable part of HUNTERRR too remains its opening section only dealing with adolescents.
However, the two films are not being discussed here in comparative terms at all in any manner. But they are being quoted in a single line together just to portray the similarities in concept and the vast differences in the vision within the two eras wherein probably we are fast losing the ability of feeling (valuing) selfless love to the timely acts of sex and mere bodily pleasures.
In other words, even after four decades, our cinema is still selling the same story of a man and three beautiful girls in his life, but now we need SEX in place of LOVE or titles like HUNTER in place of LOVER to make & sell our films in the market unfortunately.
(First published at Hindustan Times portal at the following link on 21st March 2015 – with few changes)
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Continuing his struggle to make a major breakthrough as an actor-producer (and director too), Ganesh Acharya comes up with another below average, inspired project HEY BRO directed by Ajay Chandhok that fails to make any sort of impact on the viewers be it story, execution, music or performances.
In fact the films raises a valid question that who actually approves a decent amount of money to be spent on such LOUD products served as comedies to torture the helpless viewers becoming a constant, unavoidable feature of our Hindi film industry. Moreover its really surprising to see the film made on an ages old concept of separated twin brothers (not resembling each other), inspired from the English flick TWINS (1988) which was also seen in HUMSE BADHKAR KAUN released in 1998.
The amateurish writing rarely offers any good funny scenes in this 113 minutes film and the songs too range from poor to average including the most publicized “Birju” featuring cameos of Amitabh Bachchan, Hrithik Roshan, Ajay Devgn, Akshay Kumar, Ranveer Singh and Prabhu Deva. Adding to the uninteresting proceedings even Govinda (in a scene) and Mahie Gill (in an item song) fail to deliver anything engaging along with the other key performers playing their respective characters.
In short this seems to be made with a vision still hanging somewhere in the 90s that doesn’t work at all despite the help offered by many big names of the industry so generously.
Rating : 0.5 / 5 (Just for the friendly effort seen in the song ‘Birju”)
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