Tuesday, December 31, 2013


One of the finest comedies and indeed the wittiest of many.

Witty lines and scenes make this film a fantastic one to watch. It's a laugh riot and does full throttle. It's uncompromising in vision which is a rarity considering 1933 where studios determined what has to be shown. Marx brothers who are considered as comedy giants in their times, gave wonderful performances in this film. From a retort to "Tanks" (which is thought as "Thanks") with a "Welcome" to many many moments where it's tough to hold back our laughs, this film is spanned with nothing but wit and comedy. 

I dare say, it is one of the funniest films I watched in a long time. It's hilarious and comical, it's also strongly satirical and political too. It takes on war, politics behind war and what kings or rulers do. The best part is it never takes itself seriously even for iota of a moment and gives out gags where each one is wonderfully joyful. 

Groucho Marx as Firefly, gives a wonderful performance probably the finest of his life from the word go. He dances, sings, and utters some of the wittiest lines uttered ever on film screen. His act as a Mussolini like is wonderful and more so as excellency of Fredonia. From his entry till the last frame, he makes this film his own. 

He is ably supported by his own brothers Harpo, Chico and Zeppo who give wonderful scenes too. My only crib is that it is too short. At 68 minutes, this film gives out so many wonderful moments that it leaves us yearning for more. Should this have been edited, I would be very disappointed, coz every frame is precious in this film and has to be embraced. 

This film is now 80 years old and it is still so young and infectious in wit and the sheer energy on screen. I wish again, to see more than 68 minutes of this. One of the greatest comedies ever, a 5/5 for this. Wit, humour and outstandingly performed this a must watch for every film lover.


తొలిసారి నిన్నే చూసి నా మనసే పులకించేను 
ఏదో అయిపోయెను ఏమీ మహిమా?
దీనిని ప్రేమే ప్రేమే అందునా, లేక ఆకర్షణే అందునా, ఏమీ మహిమా?

స్వర్గమే కనిపించే నీ కళ్ళలో, నీవే గుర్తొచ్చే నా మదిలో 
ఏమిటో గానీ దీని పేరు, ఎంతో హాయినిస్తోంది నాకు 
దీనిని ప్రేమే ప్రేమే అందునా, లేక ఆకర్షణే అందునా, ఏమీ మహిమా?

నా జీవితం నీకంకితం, నా హృదయం నీ సర్వస్వం 
నా ధ్యాస లోనూ నీవే, నా శ్వాస లోనూ నీవే 

ఓ హృదయమా ఇదే ప్రేమనీ తెలుసునా
తోలి చూపులో ప్రేమ కలిగెను మనసునా 

నీవే నా ప్రియతమా నీవే నా ప్రాణమా? 
నీవే జీవితమా ఈ ప్రేమ శాశ్వతమా?

Monday, December 30, 2013


ఎన్నెన్నో ఆశలూ, కొన్నైనా తీరవే? 
ఈ హృదయ జ్వాలలు కలనైనా ఆరవే? 
ఎంత నీరు పోసినా ఈ మంటలు అసలారనే ఆరవే?
ఎన్ని కలలు కన్నా ఈ నయనాలు కలలు కనటం మానవే? 
అది కలనైనా నిజం కాదు, నా ఆశ అటువంటిదా?
మది క్షణమైనా ఊరుకోదు నా ధ్యాస అటువంటిదా? 
దీని కారణం నీవే చెలి, నా జీవనం నీకే సఖీ ఇక కరుణించవా?
నా ధ్యాసలో నీవే మరీ నా ఆశనూ నీవే మరీ ఇక కనిపించవా?

తీరెనుగా ఆశలూ పండెనుగా నా కలలు 
ఆరెనుగా జ్వాలలు వీడెను నిట్టూర్పులూ

काबिल नहीं समझदार सही

काबिल तो नहीं समझता किसी के प्यार को पाने के लिए
पर यु समझता हूँ कि समझदार हूँ किसी को अपना प्यार समझाने के लिए

Sunday, December 29, 2013


Passion exuberance in every frame of the film. A rarity and a great tribute to cinema itself.

When love, passion and intelligence come together a genius is made and precisely Cinema Paradiso is that. Giuseppe Tornatore is a genius too. This is just his second feature film and he does an exemplary job. 

The nuances of a child from helping friends to learning things, growing up as juvenile and falling in love, then as a man who does his own thing. The life of a person is shown beautifully with wonderful fine moments. I love the scene in which Alfredo tells him not to trust a blue-eyed woman and how he uses a dialogue from an old film is wonderful. From Keaton to Chaplin to Clark Gable to many more. There are wonderful references. The aficionados will love this as there are many montages of the good old films. The genius lies in a scene where the frame of the pass through the walls of the projection room and the film is showed on a wall of a street. Wonderful thing that and hats off to the writer director Tornatore for that.

I must specially mention Ennio Morricone and his score. What music does, we all know it  adds up life in a bland moment. It adds emotions, it reflects emotions, it fills silences. Ennio Moricone does it all and more he adds life to movie itself and how much ever I praise Morricone, it would be less by all means.

The acting is fine be it of Alfredo, the projectionist played by Philippe Noiret, Salvatore Di Vita (child) played by Salvatore Cascio or a host of others. The boy and Alfredo have a charming chemistry which is wonderful, it gives a smile and at times there are feelings echoed my own of the way I respected my childhood teachers.

A word about Giuseppe Tornatore, he really knows how to show kids and adolescents in the film. The earlier film I watched of his, Malena too had shown adolescent feelings wonderfully and here too, he knows how wonderful a kid can be and precisely depicts that with even more sensitivity. Kudos to him for that and I shall be indebted for him in many ways to have made two of my favourite films. This one and Malena.

To all the film lovers, this is a must watch film and one of those that you must surely watch before I pass away. I am lucky to watch this and wish there shall be many more lucky ones. A 5/5 for this, one of the greatest films ever.  

Saturday, December 28, 2013


A gem of a film that has simplicity rare to find in cinema these days.

It has a charm that is now seldom or rather not present. Look at that one scene in which the detergent Chamku is being sold. That one scene speaks volumes about how innocent and silly the ways to impress were. In a similar vein, this film has many moments that make us woo for it. The characters are affable, the dialogues are simple and the treatment is just down to earth. 

Setup in an apartment are 3 friends who have to go through so many hurdles to pay their rent. A girl comes in their community and all the 3 try to woo here in their own ways. She decides who is the right one for her. All through the film, it's never boring or tiring on brain. You can simply have a smile and at times laugh out loud too. The best part indeed is that the film does not itself too seriously. 

Sai Paranjpe was a brave woman director who was considered to be ahead of her times. She has extracted brilliant performances from brilliant actors. Farooq Sheikh and Deepti Naval set a precedent of brining common man stories into the film domain. They were simplistic and endearing. Chashme Baddoor stand the test of time and it is relevant even now. Most of the credit can be attributed to the writing of characters by Sai Paranjpe herself. 

The characters of Omi, Jai, Siddharth and Lallan Miyan will stay etched in the memory after we have seen this. Lallan Miyan comes at few times only, but is witty and makes a mark for himself. Except Farooq, I remember others by their character names only. That's the impact this film had on me. Not to forget Neha superbly acted by Deepti Naval. 

The cinematography may be age-old and simplistic, but it works. The editing is fine too, though some songs might have done away with but they add charm. Listen to Kahan Se Aaye Badra sung by Yesudas and it's wonderful. 

I am going with 4/5 for this film. 


A wonderful gem that should not be missed by a fan of films.

A scene in which Shahid returns home is heart touching and another one in which he gives his first salary to his mom is heart rending too. Moments like this which are subtle and sensitive are plethora in this film filled of nuances. 

Our film fraternity seems to be shying a wee bit away from pusillanimity and is becoming adventurous and intrepid too. Look at the films like Kai Po Che, Ship of Theseus, The Lunchbox and even Lootera are fine examples of that. In the same league Shahid stands and am happy to be ending my film watching year with a fine film. 

There is an uncompromising sincerity that is there unflinchingly through out the film. Proposing a divorcee in a tea stall or studying law through the conundrums of jail. These are some moments that show how true the film tries to be sincere. The product quality is subject to a personal opinion but the intent unanimously wins all hearts.

Made in a modest budget the film is a fine example of how a supreme story be conveyed in a small budget too. With mostly unknown faces, the director Hansal Mehta has extracted exemplary performances from his cast. 

Rajkumar Yadav plays the role of Shahid Azmi and he is an actor to watch out for. His performance is convincing and portrayed a rare obedience that might be ambitious to be expecting from a relatively new and coming of age actor. 

Cinematography is good and sound direction especially the simplistic background music. Best part being this film does not have songs or fights. This is a proper commercial film that has strong real characters and conflict but devoid of the artificial conflicts. 

It's a strong a powerful film. Mind you it's a biopic based on a lawyer Shahid Azmi and I salute his spirit of fighting for the innocent. 

I am going with 5/5 and this is a memorable film for me and a challenging one to make considering the political consequences. Salutes to Anurag Kashyap who believed and backed this project. Thanks to Hansal Mehta who has the guts and courage to bring this story to light uncompromisingly. 

Monday, December 23, 2013


పరుగాపక పయనించవె తలపులనావా 
కెరటాలకు తలవంచితె తరగదు త్రోవ 
ఎదిరించిన సిడిగాలిని జయించినావా 
మది కోరిన మధుసీమలు వరించి రావా 

I love the song "Siva Poojaku" from the Telugu film "Swarna Kamalam" and especially these above lines. 
I just re-interpreted these lines, in my perspective and hope so these are liked.

O Mind, let the thoughts travel without a stop
By bowing to tides, you won't reach the top
Win the airs of hinderances by being strong
Then you shall own the heavens you sought for so long

आशिकाना चांदनी

लिखे होंगे शेर कई और लिखते रहेंगे शायरी कई 
तेरे नाज़-ओ-अंदाज़ को बयां करने, लफ्ज़-ओ-अलफ़ाज़ कम है 
चांदनी हो तुम मेरे हमनवाज-ओ-हमराज़ भी तुम ही हो 
रौशनी तेरी डूबा देती है जश्न के प्यालों में 
और कभी वही मिटा देती है आशिकी कि अश्कों में 
पलते है फिर भी सोच-ओ-ख़याल तेरी आशिकाना चांदनी में 
और रोते है हम अँधेरी रात में, तेरा निशान जो होता नहीं 
आशिकी जगाती है मोहब्बत सजाती है 
दिलकशी पूरी केह कशा को दिलाती है 
पेश है इस भरत का नज़्म तेरे लिए पूनम 
मिटेंगे जिस्म के साथ लफ्ज़ मेरे 
पर जो मिटेगा नहीं वो तुम्हारी चांदनी ही है


A historically important film on male bonding. 

This is one of the first Western Films where male bonding was glorified, though there were others earlier than this, I believe this movie got two men together who were bonded thick and thin. The chemistry between Butch Cassidy played by Paul Newman and the Sundance Kid played by Robert Redford is amazing. Without the chemistry, I am sure the film would not have worked and would not have stood the test of time.

I am watching it now after a couple of earlier viewings and today too, I felt the bonding of these guys so enticing and charming. The climax where the cover and run are done, is a testimony of what they stand for. Now having said that, the film is not all too good, sweet and nice, there are some sour moments (if not bitter) and they are given to us by uncalled for heists, and a bit of drama to get the girl too. Katherine Ross plays the female character of Etta Place. Though she does here role well, she acts as a kind of spoilsport between our two heroes and it kind of irked me. I saw it as an uncalled for aberration in another wise wonderful film. 

I liked the cinematography, the colour correction, the art direction and even the writing for a good part of the time. The sepia toning done as part of cool correction is wonderful too. It gave an authentic, earthy feeling which is essential for the film. Now, the editing I wish could have been crisp. There is a fight in the beginning that's witty and charm and as the film spans it's length the charm fades and that's the sad part of the film. 

I wish it would have had more witty moments than it actually did, the second half or later hour felt monotonous too. So, I am OK with what I got and wish it could have been so much better. I am going with 4/5 for this film, just for the sheer repeat value it has got for me that I felt low, so I need a friendship film, I get to this and I got back to this film third time. It implies there is some greatness affiliated to it as per me.


A gem that was missed and is continued to be missed.

Barring a couple of songs there is nothing bad in this movie. It has wonderful people nice emotions and also a subtle message. Still, it was neither known nor recognized it seems like this film was never made. Somehow, I got this and watched it. Wow, I found a little gem myself which I can proudly show to my family.

This is a film that is based a rural place call Hadbahedi and is visited by Rishi Kapoor who is told to be born there. There is a rival village which is more famous but because of misdeed. While Hadbahedi is not know, it has lot of good values. People do not even eat non vegetarian or eggs. Liquor is not touched. There are not many facilities yet people seem to be contended. That's the essence of the village. 

Rishi Kapoor who is fondly referred to as Chintuji plays his own role. Just that he is a narcissist actor who loves himself and needs money to get himself out of trouble. He is selfish and inconsiderate too. 
Rishi Kapoor plays the role with aplomb and ease and makes it his own. I dare say, only he could justify the role and I cannot think of any other actor doing Chintu as Rishi did it.

The film is intelligent at times and seems stupid too, but the best part is it never takes itself seriously. And that's the reason it works. It's embellished with few delicious moments and nice scenes that make us tickle and chuckle pretty much from the word go. Though there are some uncalled for subplots like a guy being accused of terrorist or a journalist being kidnapped, they do not let us deviate from the main plot and that's good. 

For songs, as afore mentioned, those were not needed, but one song which takes the names of world famous directors from Akira Kurosawa to Vittoria De Sica and many more is just hilarious. Many moments like this make it a fun watch.

The screenplay is quick and the editing seems fine for much of the film. The performances by much of the little characters be it a rickshaw puller who comes in one scene or Maa ji, seemed great. But again, it's the uninhibited performance of the protagonist Rishi Kapoor as Chintuji that makes it work.

I wish this is either re-released or is selected for few festivals coz it deserves a wider audience and appreciation than what it actually got. I am going with probably a high rating of 4/5, but it's ok coz I loved it.

Sunday, December 22, 2013


The greatest Gangster film that I have seen, it does something that even The Godfather, did not do.

Here is a film on organised crime that is having a voice over of it's protagonist for good amount of time and it makes the film all the more interesting. I love many shots in the film, like the conversation shots between Paulie and Henry, or the way jokes of Joe Pesci are captured or even the murders. Damn, this is all very realistic and it's admirable to have achieved it this way. Indeed at times it plays like a documentary unlike a fiction film. Also, the film is told in first person not only by Henry but also by his wife Karen. Damn, it makes the film relatable and real.

The performances are superb, each detail, each nuance is done well, nothing seems out of place, a jaw dropping murder of rib tickling joke, all seem so natural in emotions here. Joe Pesci gets out some wonderful lines. Robert DeNiro is extremely cold blooded as Jimmy. Paul Sorvino as Paulie is authoritative. Loranne Bracco as Karen is loving. Ray Liotta as Henry is infectious and fragile. There is a host of other characters that are wonderful too. 

We must understand that these characters actually existed in reality and from their interviews was the book, Wise Gy written by Nicolas Pilleggi. GoodFellas was based on this book only. Scorsese is indeed the most interesting director of our times, who takes varied themes and puts it all in the pan and cooks it so well that the dish surely tastes delicious.

To showcase power, he takes an interesting point where Henry takes his Karen into a restaurant by surpassing the crowd, going through the backdoor and a table is literally lifted and placed for them. To showcase guilt, Scorsese uses conversation between Jimmy and Henry. To showcase crime, he shows us just a few gunshots and how emotionless the killer is. Damn, all this makes it such interesting and a fun film. The camera movement is adept and so is the cinematographer. But to dive the camera and the cameraman, the director is needed. Scorsese precisely is such director. 

This is not actually a Gangster film, I will rather call it as a film that is made on Organised Crime in a throughly interesting way and with eccentric and interesting characters. Of course, the cast does get all the chords right and takes the characters into a new level.

It is indeed long with a length of 140 minutes, but it's an easy film for a movie buff. But for the non-aficionados the characters names and the length may take a toll. But I will say, most film-goers have considered this a good film as per ratings all over, thus even the claim that it is lengthy can be cut off. 

I am giving 5/5 for this wonderful film, that is self indulgent at times, but the best part is that it indulges you as viewer. Kudos to the master Scorsese for this.


A poignant and powerful american film that is extremely patriotic.

James Stewart played an iconic character of Jefferson Smith, a juvenile senator. He played with a rare naive and innocence that set the role on a whole high. It is easily a charming and lovely performance by him. Indeed, there is nothing charming about the character coz its neither stylish nor flamboyant, but its supremely honest and that is what is charming about Senator Smith.

This film is certainly one of the finest Capra's film and probably next only to his It's a Wonderful Life. 
It tells the story of how an upright straightforward juvenile boy is trapped in the conundrums of corruption that is there in 1930s america. And how he fights to overcome that. 

Now this is a simple line that is made extravagant by imbibing many political details in the realms of the script. From elaborating the meaning of Liberty to referring many clauses of USA constitution, this film is wonderfully insightful and politically detailed.  

The dare of the director to take on a corrupt and flawed state of the political system in America is worth appreciating. This indeed stands out as a very first and prominent film to take on the role of nexus between politicians and local business people. 

Every technical department from light to sound to writing is perfect. Above all, I loved the writing by Rob Riskin and Frank Capra. This is a fine film and has many great moments. Thanks to Capra for this and admiration for his work grows. A 4/5 for this.


A wonderful philanthropic film made in the turbulent times of 1930s.

In 1933 during Great Depression, a wealthy man called Longfellow Deeds decides to go philanthropic and is accused of insanity too. The film in many ways is a testament to philanthropy and what money does to empower people and also how money acts as an evil to the bad fellows.

The film is done well in terms of photography, sound and editing. It tops in writing and directing. I love the way Frank Capra puts out his films, though there are some cinematic liberties, overall it panned out well. There were a few questionable liberties too, but all is well if it ends well. Precisely, that is what happens with the film.

Gar Cooper as Longfellow Deeds is wonderful and Jean Arthur as Louise "Babe" Benett was lovely, charming and admirable. The way Jean Arthur connives Deeds is wonderful too. Of course, there are moments where, Deed conveys how all the people he met in his life are fake and how loveable Babe is, show that is these are pure Capra moments, the initial master who drew emotions with a tear in the eye. Frank Capra began the march toward greatness with his earlier film "It Happened One Night" and continued it with this and his other wonderful films too.

The film stands tall in history with several remakes or references down the years and is one of the finest to have come out in 1930's. Yet, I rate a few films of Frank Capra above this and I am going with a 3/5. Yes, it's loveable but it does not demand a repeat watch, unlike his other films. So thus, putting my rating down a bit.

Friday, December 13, 2013


One of the most under rated and understated films that showcases the hypocrisy of Indian Cinema with unabashed bravery.

This is a fine film that has wonderful script and has some fine actors to enact the parts. Om Puri as Subramaniam and Navin Nischol as Manu Kapoor stand out. The others have given wonderful performances too. 

The writing was superb, the character of Kajal portrayed by Perizaad Zorabaian was etched out beautifully. It has a modern outlook and thwarts the hypocrisy too. Damn, she was one courageous woman who did that role, perfectly well. Pat Cusick played the role of Patrick Stormaire with a poise of mockery and dignity. It's a rare case for Bollywood and a one to watch. 

Above the performances lies the script and yet, the acting has taken the film to a different live. Look at Om Puri shouting in typical South Indian Accent as "Balls, Balls, I want more Balls" when shooting a song sequence. There are such fine moments of splits and wonderful moments of courage too. This is added to a touch of emotion and it's al blended well into a wonderful film.

The departments of cinematography, editing play a lesser role as the film in itself is a kind of spoof on the way Bollywood films are shot and some shots are so laughable that they create a hilarious feeling. This is one of the better films of Nagesh Kukunoor and I rate it as one of the finest films made on Bollywood itself. Never before was the Bollywood film making thrashed as it did happen in Bollywood Calling. 

It's a 4/5 for this film. If anybody wants to have some good laughs at the way films are made in Bollywood, this is certainly a competent choice.

Thursday, December 12, 2013


A film that keeps inspiring many viewers. A wonderful depiction and portrayal of a just interesting character.

It's the boxer Jake LaMotta's life, the personal envy he goes through which transpires into his professional failures at times. Now, this is not a film about a boxing but is about a flawed man. His fall his rise and his redemption and getting on with life. A boxer who became a stand up comedian. 

This is a testimony of acting, the physical transformation that Robert De Niro underwent for the role of Jake LaMotta is remarkable and is one that is helped, even 33 years later as a great symbol of submitting one self to a role. Robert De Niro, after this film was taken very seriously and was enlisted as a great actor hence. 

The writing was good, if not great but the depiction of the written work was something stupendous. The supporting characters, be it Joe Pesci as Jake's brother Joey LaMotta or the lesser know referees in the boxing ring, were all great in the portrayal of their roles. The film flows so fluidly in emotions that it seems natural. An example, if I can take is that of Jake asking his brother Joey about Vickie, Jake's wife, when they were setting up a television.  That scene was cool and many scenes like these were cool too. 

The fights are wonderfully choreographed and the camera placement is a wonderful thing. Camera became a character and took me as viewer into the ring. The jabs, the punches and the blood that was oozing out, all seemed real. Damn the camera, damn the cinematographer, and damn the director. I damn them because such a thing would be hard for many to achieve and they have done a stupendous job.  The shots are wonderful and iconic. Also, the choice of Black and White as the presentation Medium, unlike Colour seems to have set this movie apart from a regular film. It is intriguing and striking.

The sound direction is another aspect that is perfect, from the sound of camera flashes to the screaming of Jake in prison, it was all wonderful and it remained in head so long after the movie. Also, the background music which would almost go unnoticed if not given a keen ear to, has played a substantial role in elevating the emotions.

All in all, a well crafted and a perfect film that I believe is one of the best sports film and one of the finest performances ever displayed. Scorsese was considered a great film maker since this film, and even today stands above many as one of the finest film makers of our time. 

Thanks to LaMotta for his own work on this, but more thanks to DeNiro and Scorsese for giving us one of the finest films ever. An undoubted 5/5 for this.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

सवालों का नशा

हसीनाओं को गुरूर क्यों न हो नज़ाकत का 
दीवानों को मोहब्बत क्यों न हो हसीनों से 
कोई पूछे रवैया दुनिया का क्यों है ऐसा 
मैखानों में नशा क्यों न हो खयालों का सवालों का

Saturday, December 7, 2013

PAAR (1984) - HINDI

The plight of the poor is encapsulated stupendously in this heart rending tale of a couple.

Aptly titled as PAAR, The Crossing which means reaching the other end, the couple here strives just to make ends meet. Indeed fails for a good amount of time and finally is contented with whatever has been offered.

This is one of the most authentic and yet simple film that is made on the poor, and how human spirit to fight against all the odds can keep a soul happy. Also, to show some contrast , there is a scene in which the jubilation of the youth of 1983 when India won the Cricket World Cup is put. This shows the stark realities of our society which indeed is effective even today in some parts of the nation. 

This is a great lesson on film making in itself to today's youth. There is no flamboyance, style, nor any graphics or even fantasy. There are characters who are from a village, who seek employment and who are afraid of life in itself and would go to any length to respectfully earn their bread. A scene in which Naurangi (Naseeruddin Shah) is offered a few rupees and when he denies it saying, "Aap kuch bhi kaam de do mujhe, jhaadu pocha ya kuch bhi" shows that even poor have their self respect and it was put well. 

Gautam Ghose, made this film when he was 33-34 and man he has the gut to show us in face what India meant in 1984. Damn, kudos to his gut and the script work he had done. The shot of crossing the river, is a testimony of what a director should actually be capable of, without any technology, cameras or hype, simply capturing the emotions of characters. He seems to be a spectator in a grand scale to such heinous acts that were depicted in the film and has placed them supremely well in this film. 

Acting by each and everyone was exemplary. Naseeruddin Shah and Shabana Azmi gave one of their finest performances. Shabana Azmi as Rama is memorable. The other cast which includes a host of actors from Utpal Dutt to Om Puri and many more, did their parts well. 

This is a film that shows the dark realities of the Indian society in 1980's and kudos to Gautam Ghose and the makers of the film to conceive this and giving it to us. I hope so that many from my generation and from the future generations, watch this. 

The screenplay, was at time non-linear per say and with flashes of back story. It was commendable and interesting. The editing also was good, all through it just kept the story moving forward. The cinematography from the titles to the end credits was supreme.

I loved the whole of the film, but to see it again, I must have the dare to let my heart rend and wrench by the trauma I will emotionally subject myself to. I am going with 5/5 for this. Just loved it. 

ANKUR (1974) - HINDI

Ankur means the Seedling. And indeed, this film was a seed to the parallel movement in films that ran in 70's and 80's. It's a wonderful depiction of the reality which existed then, and even today in some remote parts of India. 

The narrative is simple and indeed very slow, there are no major subplots as the main plot in itself is heart rending and superior to many films that have come till then. In an age, where superstars were being made, and Amitabh Bachhhan was transformed as Angry Young Man, this film silently made its way into the public with a limited released and later on with the word of mouth. All because of many good traits that the film possesses.

Shyam Benegal, who is now considered as a father of Parallel Cinema, wrote this long back and had to go to struggle to a lot to get this made. All this was done with a meagre budget and the product that was obtained out of the hard work is a stand-out even today.  Ankur is a pioneer and has it's moments of greatness considering the time, it was made. Subsequently, even Shyam Benegal was revered as a great film maker as many more wonderful films came from him.

Now, today when I saw it, it felt a bit anachronistic and antiquated coz I do not see such kind of vulgar oppression anywhere now, may be there is but it's not reported or it's not there any more. Having said that, the emotions are universal and the feeling of being oppressed, the helplessness, the hopes that are there for well being and then a revolution being sparked. All this is put wonderfully. The last shot where a boy throws a stone at the Zamindar's house is of great symbolism and portrays a feeling that echoes with the poor who keep the poor as poor. 

The acting was superb, Shabana Azmi was a revelation and a blessed actor and we were grateful to have firstly and also grateful for makers to give her ample opportunities that helped her showcase her talent with an array of emotions. Thanks to Benegal to have found her and given Shabana to us. 

It needs applause in many areas, firstly for starting a kind of cinematic revolution in India. Yet, my only crib is the editing, I wish the film could have been slicker with sharp editing. It would have added to the pace and helped the new-age viewers like me. 

I am going with 4/5. It's a kind of film that's strong in social issues. But it's a laid back film that makes us recede in time. So just be warned of the pace coz it's a great film.

Friday, December 6, 2013


A film that is plotless and based on pure conversations that are incoherent and yet so interesting. This is remarkable filming.

This film is an evocative reflection of an American Community based in Texas and it reflects it so aptly and in sync with the title Slacker. "Slacker" refers to a person who lacks work ethic or who avoids work. Most of the characters, just speak and there work is never shown. What they do, why they do that. All this is not mentioned for most characters. They just speak something. For most of the time, there dialogues actually mean nothing and may even some gibberish, unless you pay attention to the subtexts. Indeed, they have a profound meaning underground and they are interesting too. Just have the patience of paying attention and you will be rewarded.

Richard Linklater made remarkable films. From the "Before" trilogy to his most provocative and philosophical "Waking Life". I suppose so, that "Slacker" is indeed a prequel to "Waking Life" where conversations mean everything, characters are just real characters, who speak their mind, and there is no coherence to relate the whole film to a story. So those are the similarities of these two films and yet there are many differences too, which I better not discuss here. 

Linklater's eye for detail and understanding nuances of a whole community and capturing them as if they are all impromptu is indeed wonderful. This sets the film apart and the structure is rather stunning and yet so simple, indeed, the structure is just a flow of characters. One character leaves and other picks it up and sometimes the new character was part of the previous frame or scene too. So the structure could have been new in 1991 for many, but such structure came in 1929 with "Man with a Movie Camera". Now, what's outstanding though is the dialogue. Linklater has a gift for provoking thoughts with his dialogues and this perhaps is his earliest instance where he showcased in talent in full flow. 

This was made on a shoe-string budget of $23000 (courtesy : Wikipedia). Considering that, this is made wonderfully. Also, this film was shot on a span of few days only in Austin, Texas. So, this is a wonderful attempt in Independent films and it has raised the bar for writing and dialogue. The production values are not great but manageable. The editing is superb and the cinematography fine. Other aspects of acting are just apt. So all in all technically it was a great attempt with the budget it had.

I liked this film but this cannot be visited multiple times as the dialogues are interesting but are limiting with the characters. Thus, I am going with a 3/5 as a good film, even a wonderful film in some. But not above my favorite "Waking Life" 


Sunday, December 1, 2013



భరణి గారు, మిమ్మల్ని చాలా దినములుగా సంప్రదించాలని అనుకున్నాను కానీ భయంతో ఆ పని చేయలేదు. కారణం, మీ గొప్పతనం నా పేదతనానికి అడ్డు వఛిన్ది. గొప్పతనం అంటే మీ అభిరుచి, మీ ఔన్నత్యము, మీ మనసు.  

అయితే అన్నిటికన్నా ముఖ్యం మీరు తీసిన మిథునం, నాలో ఒక చిగురాశ రేపింది 

దానికి నేను రాసిన విశ్లేషణ ఇక్కడ అందిస్తున్నాను 

ఈ విశ్లేషణ చదువుతారు అని ఆశిస్తున్నాను. 

మిమ్మల్ని కలిసి సంభాషించాలని ఉంది తెలుగుని ప్రపంచ వెలుగులోకి, మురికిలో ఉన్న తెలుగు సినిమాకి  నలుగు పెట్టి మరీ నలుగురిలోకి తీసుకు వెళ్ళే సామర్థ్యం మీకు ఉంది. అందుకే మీతో పని చేయాలని ఉంది. 

అసందర్భం అని అనుకోకపోతే, ఒక అభ్యర్థన. నేను 2007 లో "పూర్ణిమ" అనే ఒక కథను, Script గా రాసుకున్నను. 
ఇది ఒక అమ్మాయి కథ, ఆ కథనం మీకు వివరించాలని ఉంది. ఇది అచ్చ తెలుగులో నేను రాసుకున్న ఒక కథ, దీనికి ఆధారం, ఒక నిజమైన సంఘటన. 

మీరు మా లాంటి అభిమానులకు ఇచ్చిన వెసులుబాటును వాడుకుని మిమ్మల్ని దరి చేరాలి అనే చిన్న ప్రయత్నం ఇది. 

వీలు చూసుకుని సమాధానం ఇస్తారు అని వెయ్యి కళ్ళతో ఎదురు చూస్తూ, 



A genius makes this. So it is wonderfully good. Chaplin has seldom faulted and here he is standing at his genius best.

So many elements are new in this, the effect of industrialisation on humans. The need and greed for money. Craving for love and doing work so as to keep the lover happy.  This is one of the most poignant films culturally and on humanitarian terms. Charlie as the Tramp delivers an immaculate performance that is a treat to watch. From being a hero in jail and struggles outside of jail. He comes to terms with the world that has become a flock, like flock of sheep that braze on grass, humans now braze on their new jobs as workers in factories. 

Ok, technically, this is a Silent film, now considering 1936 where the "talkies" have become regular in Hollywood, it seemed somewhat anachronistic. Yet, had the tramp spoke he would have become one among many, a common man and his mystic characteristics might have surfaced and he would have lost his charm. So it was a good thing that it was kept silent just for the sake of maintaining the uniqueness of "The Tramp".

There are so many unique things in this film that even today, it would to be tough to scale the magnanimity of the sets involved, the charm of the love story and the simplicity of the humour. Be it a scene where he looks at buttons of a woman as nut and bolts trying to fix them, or his fall into the damp water realising that it is not a lake or pond. So many moments are beautiful and simple and this is one of the rarest films, that will bring laughter irrespective of time and age. And it indeed brings a tear drop at times too. Emotions are universal, and the better connected they are, more beautiful the film will be. 

Chaplin knew the art if film making, yes and more than that he knew the art of being a simple human being. What it takes to live a life simply, what goes through a simple man trying to earn his bread. What goes through a lover who is trying to win the heart of a girl. He knew all this so well and many traits of his thoughts have surface in this film, making it a wonderful film and how many times ever I watch this, I never got bored and I never will. 

To distinctly say that so and so in this film is wonderful would be demeaning the essence of the film. 
So, everything is superb and I can bet on this for laughs any time. A 5/5 for one of the greatest films ever.


An unpredictable film that is about a meeting of two icons. 

Indeed it's bizarre considering that this does not have a story per say except the line of the story which might have said "What might have happened when Einstein encountered Marilyn Monroe?". This interesting question in answered rather interestingly in this film. The scene in which Marilyn interprets theory of relativity to Einstein is so revealing and indeed hilarious, it puts out a layman's perspective in front of  great scientist and it's wonderfully done. 

Also, there are two more principal characters The Senator and The Ballplayer as they are referred to, had I been american I would have correlated them to Joe McCarthy and Joe Dimaggio. Since, I was unaware I had to dig through wikipedia to learn the relationships. Yet, the conversation was so intriguing and inquisitive that it just made me wonder what would come next. 

There are really very significant moments in the film and I am not very sure, why was the film titled as "INSIGNIFICANCE". The beauty lies in concealing the obvious and revealing the mystique and putting it out very very interestingly in a very minimal space. Space, I am referring to is the shooting space. The film was mostly shot in an apartment. The space in the apartment was superbly used.

The art direction, set design, and even the cinematography created the mood and atmosphere that I believe was apt, be it the flashback scenes of the characters or those during the conversation, it was all done well. 

To determine in line, what this film is actually about is a tough job for me, as I cannot contemplate the point or comprehend on the whole as to what this film actually meant. I can only say, it was based on a conversation that would have been simple, if these were normal people, but there are 4 eccentric icons who are famous and that would take the whole film to a new realm. 

All that said, it is interesting and even absurd at times, as it does not conclude, say or do anything, except for  a few laughs and few interesting moments. It's beauty lies in the absurd which I agree with, yet I wished it had a few more interesting moments than the ones. I am going with 3/5 with is interesting film that could have been so much more.

Thanks to Nicolas Roeg, this is the first film of this director and he seems to be have an interesting wit and a good head and perhaps, I will review a few more of his films.

About Me

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I firstly declare here that all the content written in the blog is exclusively written by me and I hold the copyrights of each and everything. Be it a poem or a movie review. Also, the videos or photographs I upload or attach are exclusively owned by me. This declaration is important in a world that seems so worried of piracy. The prime purpose of these blogs is to put my writings and photographs on the net. and well to start with.... I live in my mind, and existence is the attempt to bring my thoughts into physical reality, I celebrate myself, sing myself and I am always happy in my own company.....I am not the best in the world but I strive for excellence and thats what keeps me alive... Talking much about oneself can also be a means to conceal oneself--Friedrich Nietzsche