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May 25, 2017 Thursday     

There is much to know about Punjab beyond politics, crime and drugs and the makers of IRADA at least gather some courage to make a film on the same revolving around a key city of the state featuring an interesting cast.

However I seriously wish the project was written, executed and publicized in a much stronger and fearless manner, since the present one unfortunately presents a lesser known, eye opener issue with quite a lame and unimpressive vision which fails to make any kind of solid impact on the viewer as required.

Revolving around a terribly disturbing truth of a known region in Punjab becoming the victim of water contamination because of a politically shielded industry and its reverse boring process (mixing chemicals with the groundwater), IRADA reveals a scary untold truth spreading the deadly cancer in people. And then introduces the harsh reality of a ‘CANCER TRAIN’ taking the patients from Bathinda to Bikaner (for treatment), also becoming a potential source of clients for the new Insurance agents.

No doubt the debutant director Aparnaa Singh surely deserves praises for selecting such an off-beat, dark subject talking about eco-terrorism (as the film calls it) in her very first attempt. But sadly the choice of subject doesn’t get any great support from its writers and the execution too remains far less than anything impactful lessening the alarming, social importance of its crucial subject.

Probably it was both the inexperience of the team and fear of the censor or involved parties that the makers didn’t even try to present it as any bold, in-depth film showcasing the lesser known reality. The subject matter surely had a lot to shock the uninformed or unaware viewers, but the film seldom intends to do the same and therefore keeps walking on the surface without getting into any ugly deeper pits intentionally.

Beginning with the emotional story of a father and his young athlete daughter (in the first 20 minutes), the film suddenly changes path moving on to the other related subplots involving a journalist, a corrupt politician, a cunning industrialist and an honest investigating officer appointed for the case. Taking too much time in the build-up, the relationships only gets established after almost an hour when the key plot is revealed and its only post the intermission that the viewer feels like watching something better talking about a shocking social issue to be honest. However an amateurish climax further ruins the entire excitement felt in its concluding hour.

Proving as the biggest savior apart from its appreciable plot, IRADA has an interesting cast featuring Naseeruddin Shah as the distressed father, Arshad Warsi as the smart, honest officer, Divya Dutta as a corrupt abusive politician (mostly speaking in Punjabi) and Sharad Kelkar as the mean, exploitive industrialist or the villain. Where both Naseer and Arshad keep trying to do their best in their half-baked roles, Divya and Sharad remain loud and unreal throughout due to the weak characterizations and Sagarika Ghatge fails to deliver anything worth noticing playing the revenge seeking journalist. Surprisingly the youngest of them all, Ruman Molla scores the maximum as the innocent, victim girl in her few scenes.

Besides the real life sources, the director also draws her inspiration from Julia Robert’s classic ERIN BROCKOVICH (2000) based on a similar subject, but remains unable to make any taut, exciting thriller following the identical format.

Summing up, IRADA has its heart in the right place and the intensions also noble choosing an untouched and relevant subject showcasing the present state of Punjab. But sadly that is not sufficient for making any winning film. As my personal conclusion, it would have been an entirely different outcome if the film was made in Punjabi instead of Hindi with a leading young actor playing the role of a short tempered investigating officer going after the politician and the industrialist together like an angry young man.

Rating : 2 + 1 (with the additional 1 just for the choice of subject and bringing the truth forward in front of the entire nation)

Tags : Irada Movie Review By Bobby Sing, Irada Film Review by Bobby Sing, Inspired Movies, Real life Inspired Movies on Punjab, Cancer Train in Punjba, Irada and Erin Brockovich, 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 February 2017 / bobbysing /
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For friends who might not be aware, I is one of the biggest films of the present times from Shankar, one of the most reputed and successful director of South Cinema, that was being awaited with huge expectations since its unusual trailer released a few months back. Made on a massive budget, it was speculated to be a surprising ‘out of the box’ venture with many firsts in Indian cinema as depicted in the trailer and it was indeed a very pleasant view to see the theatre almost full (in West Delhi on Thursday) in its first show despite it being a dubbed Hindi version of the Tamil original. However after witnessing the extravaganza, one is left with mixed reactions with much praises for its leading man for sure without any exception.
Revealing the positive features first, I has a huge colourful canvas featuring many virgin locations of China and more captured beautifully. It has few brilliantly conceived action sequences (particularly the one with the cycles), worth watching graphics and an exceptional make-up converting a hard working body builder into a hunchback so believingly. Moreover the effort put in by Vikram in both his unusual avatars on screen simply bowls you over leaving a lasting impact post the happy ending. And the actor deserves full marks for his visibly worked-upon performance, displaying an exemplary dedication towards the art without any doubts. Though for the Hindi film audience his lover-boy act might seem to be a bit over the top, but what he does as the disfigured victim later is simply mind blowing reminding you of veterans such as Sanjeev Kumar and Amitabh Bachchan (in Paa).
Apart from its cinematography, another major support to the film comes from its Background score that perfectly enhances the excitement level with the right punch delivered just at the right moment. The high volume arrangement makes you feel the power watching the disfigured person emerging as the winner at regular intervals and that’s exactly what lifts the movie till the end, particularly in its climax.
Mentioning the flaws I’s first half stretches a lot and Shankar takes a long time to establish his characters as usual. The romantic angle becomes repetitive after a while and the film starts losing its grip post the initial 40 minutes only. Thankfully the non-linear format adapted by the director, returning to the revealing flashbacks keeps the interest alive and one expects more surprises coming next remembering the path-breaking trailer. Post interval after another routine song as the basic plot gets revealed, Shankar returns with many entertaining sequences dealing with vengeance and the viewers enjoy justice being served to the evil souls quite deservingly. In other words the final 40 minutes of the film work as its major savior and one doesn’t feel entirely disappointed due to Vikram and his flawless performance alone.
In the supporting acts, Amy Jackson does what she was supposed to do, i.e. look beautiful besides the skin show and provide the glamour factor as an important commercial requirement of a big project. Whereas all the rest including Upen Patel, Santhanam, Suresh Gopi & others fail to make any major contribution in the film resulting in all childish kind of villains reducing the overall impact. In the technical department, editing comes out as the biggest culprit since the film is too long at more than 3 hours of duration and could have been trimmed by at least 20-25 minutes cutting out all the unrequired songs and sequences.  
(Spoilers Ahead)
Elaborating on the disappointments further, the basic story plot of I is so thin and clichéd that it makes you wonder that how come one think of making such a big budget film with a big star on such a wafer thin plot of plain revenge (where the culprit can easily be guessed too). The money spent on the song picturisations are the next bizarre thing you notice while watching the lackluster songs. And this further forces you to ponder over the poor music composed by the maestro A. R. Rahman yet again in a biggie post LINGAA. But here along with Rahman, Shankar also needs to be questioned for having approved such tracks coming from the Oscar winning composer and not (demanding) asking him to deliver something bigger and better. For instance there was a time when every sad song from Rahman used to be a gem like ‘Tu Hi Re’ and more. But now even the rendition of a sad song seems to be so loud and odd putting too much effort into it in a silly manner.
Pointing out I’s major shortcomings, its screenplay is erratic, the romance lacks depth, humour doesn’t work, particularly the gay angle falls flat and so does the rich ‘fat millionaire’ acting weirdly. The final 40 minutes of the film where Vikram is taking his revenge resulting in more uglier disfigured bodies might be upsetting and distasteful for few. But ironically these are the only moments when entertainment is supposed to be there for the viewers leading to an emotional climax song reminding you of the traditional fairy tale of Beauty and the Beast.
For friends (in awe of its trailer) who were expecting a bit of horror, a bit of werewolf and a bit of terror in I as shown in those 3 minutes promotional cut, there is nothing of that sort in the film at all based on a simple plot of love and revenge. Specifically the werewolf getup and that roar is just there in a song that has nothing to do with the film’s actual storyline and I doesn’t deliver anything related to the horror element in its more than three hours, missing the magic promised in its trailer.
Yet the silver lining in the dark clouds is the enthralling, never before kind of rare performance by its lead actor and the film can and should be seen for Vikram alone instead of Shankar, Rahman or anything else.
Rating : 3 / 5 (including an additional 1 just for the effort and worth watching act of Vikram.)
Tags : I Movie Review By Bobby Sing, I Film Review By Bobby Sing, Ai Movie Review By Bobby Sing, 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
16 January 2015 / bobbysing /
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In the recent years, one department in which Hindi films have really shown their professional mastery & ability to impress the viewers right away is their promotional department, with excellence achieved in making a film’s theatrical trailers and TV promos. Coming straight to the point, there have been so many instances in the last decade when the promo of a film was so good in its overall appeal and content, but the film was simply nowhere in comparison to the expectations raised from its trailers. In fact most of the times, the film had nothing more than what was already shown in the promos, resulting in a quite disappointing movie in the end, wasting both our money & time together.
Unfortunately, the latest adaptation of Shakespeare’s “Romeo and Juliet” titled ISSAQ also falls in the same category mentioned above (God knows when they will stop making these similar films repeatedly, last one being ISHAQZADEY) which gives you nothing as promised in its well designed promos. The film is a pretty weak product, with an inconsistent story progression wherein you are not able to find any kind of emotional connect with its lead pair or other characters. It begins well with some well shot scenes but then an erratic kind of editing gives you a series of unimpressive sequences with no proper linking at all indicating a bad film ahead. Contradicting its own genre, this is a love story which completely fails to deliver any likable romance to the viewers and has a few childish and weird romantic scenes too missing that must have on-screen chemistry between the two lovers.
Actually as I felt, ISSAQ is a kind of over-confident film in which every sequence, song or action scene has been shot as if they are making a big path breaking film in Bollywood. Its several untimely inserted scenes, give you a strong feeling that they must have edited it, considering it a major epic in the making for sure (with such irregular cuts). The height of its uncanny creative imagination can be easily guessed from the fact that the film also has a fake Sadhu (Makrand Deshpande) who can lift himself from the ground in air and further when these Sadhus start smoking, there comes a text written on the screen saying, “Character Smoking Herbs not Tobacco”. A few boys sitting in the row behind mine literally had a good laugh reading that (along with myself) and I was really stunned to see the way we viewers were considered mere fools by this single line written on the screen (by both the makers and the censors).
Smartly promoted as a highly tense love drama full of guns & murders, ISSAQ has simply got nothing to offer before the interval and it continues moving ahead without any specific direction in its second half too. Such is the impact of its many unconvincing scenes that at a few times I really remembered a line from a comedy serial of 80s (Yeh Jo Hai Zindagi) in which Tiku Talsania used to say in anger……..”Yeh Kya Ho Raha Hai?” And probably that should give you a clear idea about the film and its content without any doubts left.
The soundtrack of ISSAQ doesn’t add much to the romantic feel of the subject with only one soothing title song and background score tries it too hard (like all other departments) by using more than the required ethnic instruments to give a raw & earthy feel to the film. At times the music becomes a bit over too but the camerawork mostly manages to make its colourful scenes watchable. Still the local warmth and feel of all those Indian locations (Banaras) is strangely not there.
Regarding the performances, ISSAQ can rightly be called an impressive debut movie of Amyra who looks sweet and acts fine in her given role. The girl has got the confidence and spark too which might be visible more brightly in her next ventures. But Prateik is not upto the mark here and needs to make much more efforts to put in some good performances in his coming films. He is not able to win your heart facing all the hardships in the film and thus fails to make an instant connect with the audience playing a spirited lover boy. In the supporting cast, Rajeshwari Sachdeva, Neena Gupta and Ravi Kishan are fine but Prashant Narayan is surprisingly wasted in a very questionable manner. Makrand Deshpande looks silly due to his badly written character but Vineet Kumar Singh & Sudhir Pandey perform well in their few scenes.
In all ISSAQ can easily be called an unexpectedly mediocre product which had a well designed promo, much better than the complete movie itself and there was only one question in my mind as the film got over that, What kind of attempt was this? So consider it strictly avoidable even if you loved its theatrical trailer and title track a lot.
Rating : 1 / 5
Tags : Issaq Movie Review by Bobby Sing, Issaq Film Review by Bobby Sing, Issaq Review, Ishq Revies, Ishaq Review, 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
29 July 2013 / bobbysing /
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