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January 20, 2017 Friday     
To begin with, I suppose films are made for ‘We The People, The Fans or The Die-Hard Lovers of Cinema’ willing to catch every new film on the weekend with the same excitement and passion.
But if the so called BIG filmmakers, BIG Stars, BIG Producers and Exhibitors are least concerned about the ‘deliberate ticket price increase’ being charged from us at the time of every big release by these ‘New-Age White Collared BLACK MARKETEERS”, then their films also don’t deserve any detailed in-depth reviews and should only be given that much time and attention they are really worthy of.
------------------
So here is the TTP review of SHIVAAY which was much more disappointing than I was honestly expecting it to be.
Wasting the first 45 minutes in all filmy, seen before and boring sequences of (amateurish) tracking/mountaineering, romance with a foreigner tourist and an illegitimate child born out of the relationship (as usual), SHIVAAY fails to impress in this first section of its screenplay requiring some severe editing. And the film actually manages to grab your attention only when Ajay travels to Bulgaria along with his 8 years old mute girl to find her real mother.
Showcasing the widely practiced flesh trade in the city involving young kids too, it keeps you engaged with a long well-conceived chase and action sequence dealing with the kidnappers. But once it over, Ajay quickly gets into the avatar of Salman Khan/Sunny Deol blasting Bulgarian Police and the local goons reminding you of similar circumstances and story plots seen in GADAR, BAJRANGI BHAIJAAN and the English film TAKEN too. In fact here we again have a mute kid-girl, just like we recently saw in Salman’s blockbuster with a much better enactment, presentation and treatment.
Post intermission the film comes up with an even bigger mess in its every next scene and one keeps waiting for more action sequences (at least) in order to get some kind of return for both the time and money spent on the costly tickets. In short, one never feels emotionally connected to anyone in the film revolving around family relationships (that ideally remains the first requirement for such subjects). And then a too long climax with all illogical sequences within a Police headquarter and more truly remind you of those typical Bollywood films of the 80s featuring the ‘God Blessed’ macho hero with a tattoo of a Trishul, who doesn’t get hurt even after being dragged on the road or fired upon by several machine-guns from a helicopter.
Focusing on a supposedly superhero who can do almost anything in the world with minimum efforts and equipment, SHIVAAY is stunningly shot showcasing the hills, snowstorms and more, but the mountains have nothing to do with the film post its initial 20 minutes to be precise. Moreover some specific scenes once again force me to ask that why ‘the chroma’ sequences can easily get caught in our Hindi films, but not in the foreign projects using it even more extensively?
At an excessive 170 minutes of duration, SHIVAAY wastes too much time on the obvious and gives you nothing great to say about the soundtrack or background score too unfortunately. Featuring the foreign language in few of its important scenes, the director doesn’t even care to explain them with English or Hindi subtitles as required.
Among the actors Sayyeshaa Saigal looks fine in her debut performance of a helping figure (just like Nawazuddin in BB) but the kid girl visibly struggles in her given scenes. Plus, even Ajay Devgun hasn’t got anything fresh to offer to his fans other than the well shot action sequences both as an actor as well as the director.
In short, after heavily promoting the film as some kind of adventure movie, SHIVAAY turns out to be nothing of that sort at all, making you wonder that how come Ajay found this kind of story exciting enough to use for his mega directorial venture made on such a grand scale? No doubt the choice was strange, disappointing, silly or conveniently foolish altogether, coming as a Himalayan disappointment.
Having said that, would still like to end with a very fine dialogue heard in the beginning of the film and it goes as,
“Zaroorat Se Zyada Kabhi Maanga Nahin,
Aur Zaroorat Se Kam Usne Kabhi Diya Nahin”
Go for it, only if you are a die-hard Ajay Devgan fan and cannot give it a miss.
Rating : 1.5 / 5
Note: Addressing the repetitive issue of ‘Unfair, selective increase in ticket price by the Multiplexes’.
Though my site and write-ups might be too small in front of the big runners and my voice raised against this MULTIPLEX MAFIA also might not get heard or reach anywhere.
But what nobody can stop me from is deducting ONE STAR from every such film that takes ‘we the viewers’ for granted (in revolt). So a star goes from the rating of SHIVAAY too since every big actor, director, production house and exhibitor is equally contributing in this sheer exploitation and willfully ignoring the issue over the last couple of years.
Final Rating : 1.5 - 1 = 0.5 / 5
Tags : Shivaay Film Review by Bobby Sing, Shivaay Review by Bobby Sing, SHIVAAY based in Himalayas, Ajay Devgun as a director, 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, Inpsired Films, Similar to Gadar - Bajrangi Bhaijaan and Taken
 
 
28 October 2016 / bobbysing /
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Sully

Based on the miraculous event witnessed by America on a cold morning of January 2009, when a US Airways flight had to make an emergency landing on the Hudson River instead of the nearest New York airport, SULLY is one of those rare exceptional films which makes you rethink about life and the unseen force behind it we preferably love to name and remember as THE GOD.
Moving into the must watch list of BTC for its excellence achieved, SULLY is realistically executed and has a very subtle, effective but ‘no overly dramatized’ presentation with no intention of sensationalizing the scary event for the obvious reasons. Becoming a perfect example of a film that strictly remains focused on the subject recreating the incident in a horrifying yet sensitive manner (with an excellent cinematography and sound) it takes you into the minds of its two main protagonists who were actually responsible for all those crucial decisions made in the nick of time, particularly the Captain Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger played by Tom Hanks.     
Though many might find the film not as exciting and explanatory as it ought to be, I would still love to strongly recommend SULLY to the readers for a few of my own reasons that you might not find in any of the film’s review or the usual write-ups.
First of all SULLY simply amazes me as a near-to-perfect project conceived and visualized by an extremely gifted creator living his eighth decade of life, when most of the human faculties are normally not at their best, making way for many physical and mental complexities moving towards the final destination. Directed by the 86 years old maverick CLINT EASTWOOD with an incredible vision, well-supported by his lead actor TOM HANKS of 60 with an splendid ease, SULLY reminded me of our own DEV ANAND, who though didn’t churn out any quality films at all (since the 80s), but still kept working right till the last day of his life at the age of 89 as desired.
Pointing towards probably the most precious gift for a person from the humble existence, Eastwood sets a fine example with his SULLY, making us realize that such gems are even possible at the age of 86.
Secondly, the film makes you recall a very popular saying in India as “Jaako Raakhey Saaiyan, Maar Sakey Na Koye” – meaning “If that Supreme Power has decided to save a soul, then nothing in this universe can cause it any harm (not even a plane crash)”. And what better example can be there to prove this truthful saying. A plane hits into a big flock of geese only 3 minutes post its take-off resulting in failure of both the engines, an emergency landing needs to be made anywhere around with no time to reach the nearest airport, the pilot decides to make it land on the Hudson river in an extremely cold weather, the whole crash happens in just a few minutes and yet not even a single casualty is there with all the 155 people on board rescued well in time by the ground forces coming for an immediate help.
Now what better example can be given to prove the Indian saying?
Thirdly, this one incident makes it pretty clear to the entire world led by the amazing technical advancements, that any kind of man-made machine CANNOT be compared to a human mind at all, especially in those life threatening decisive moments of crises when some immediate decisions need to be made within a few seconds without caring about what’s actually written in the prescribed manuals by the experts.
The film and its real-life case clearly proves the supremacy of a human mind over the machine quite evidently.
Lastly but most importantly, SULLY reminds us about a brutally alarming truth that along with these amazingly helpful developments enhancing our living standards, we certainly have lost one important quality of life and that’s the ability of TRUSTING the other, without any hidden doubts.
The fact is boldly visible in the film when despite the unbelievable miraculous landing on a river saving each and every life on the plane by its two pilots, they are still not trusted by the authorities and made to face an insulting trial investigating the actual happenings of the crash instead of honouring them for the same.
Perhaps the whole world has changed post the 9/11 and we have lost the ability to ‘Trust’ valuing ‘Profit and Loss’ a lot more than the real valuable things.
Anyway moving over the sad truth, do watch SULLY at the earliest as the film does have the power to reinstate your faith in both GOD and CINEMA together asking for a standing ovation. Among the best scenes of the film is the one where a female hotel manager is called in to take care of the two Captains staying in the hotel. And seeing Captain Sully, she hurriedly comes forward to hug him with love saying an emotional ‘Thank you’ straight from the heart.
Interestingly the film did remind me of another ‘not-to-be-missed’ classic titled FLIGHT (2012) featuring Danzel Washington as the saviour captain caught in a similar situation. FLIGHT is also included in the ‘Must Watch List’ at the site. So do try to watch both….. if possible.
Directed by Clint Eastwood
Starring : Tom Hanks, Aaron Eckhart and more.
Tags : Sully Movie Review by Bobby Sing, Sully Film Review by Bobby Sing at BTC, New English Film Reviews by Bobby Sing at bobbtalkscinema.com, Must See Movies List by Bobby Sing at bobbytalkscinema.com, Denzel Washington, Don Cheadle, Not To Be Missed Movies List by Bobby Sing, Worth Watching Movies List at bobbytalkscinema.com
 
 
23 October 2016 / bobbysing /
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Swades
Though SWADES (2004) was not a major box office charmer as per the expectations raised, yet it successfully won hearts and is widely considered as one of the finest works of three creative men namely, Ashutosh Govariker, Shah Rukh Khan and A. R. Rahman.
Apart from its heartwarming subject, lead performance and a melodious soundtrack, another contributor who silently left a mark on almost every single viewer watching the film remained Gayatri Joshi, who looked gorgeous in her first and only appearance as an effortless actress playing the role of Geeta. In fact such was the impact of her adorable act that the girl and her only film appearance is still remembered as one of those most lovable performances by many Hindi cinema enthusiasts including myself.
Receiving widespread critical acclaim, SWADES was also regarded as one of the finest films of the decade and along with CHAKK DE INDIA is often quoted among the career best performances of Shah Rukh Khan in an off-beat experimental film, other than his more famous ventures.
However not many are aware of the fact that the basic idea of its storyline or rather the exact idea of its major content came from a TV series aired at ZEE TV titled “Yule Love Stories” in the year 1993-95. And you are sure to get amazed reading the following pointers revealing the specific references taken from the two particular episodes of the series titled VAAPSI.
A. The director Ashutosh Gowariker himself played the character of a foreign returned young man in the serial that was enacted by SRK in SWADES using the same name as Mohan Bhargav.
B. In the serial too, Mohan first visits an old age home to meet his Kaveri Amma (the name remains the same in the film), but finds that she had already left the place a couple of years back and is now living in a small village with her young grand-daughter.
Yule Vapsi
C. Next there is the book shop sequence as seen in the film where Mohan agrees to sit behind the counter for a while on a request made by his owner friend. A customer steps on the books, a girl confronts him pointing out his mistake, Mohan watches them both, the girl brings a lot of books to the counter, keeps telling the right total while Mohan is calculating and then forgets to collect the change before leaving.
D. Post the book shop sequence, the lavish caravan features in the serial too and Mohan travels in it to the village Kaveri Amma is supposed to be living.
E. He reaches there and surprises Kaveri Amma exactly in the same manner as Shah Rukh Khan greets her in the film and then meets Geeta - the girl he had earlier met in the bookshop. (Again having the same name as used in the film)
Yule VapsiF. The story keeps proceeding on the similar lines and among other exactly identical scenes (as seen in the film) we have Mohan living in the caravan itself, an innocent postman/postmaster getting confused over the unknown inventions like FAX (it gets converted to E-mail in the film), Geeta angrily talking to Mohan while he is taking a bath, Mohan visiting the school and sitting in Geeta’s class as a student, his confession of love made in the classroom itself (standing next to the blackboard) and then both Geeta and Kaveri Amma not agreeing on leaving the village to get settled abroad.
G. However in the serial it all ends when instead of flying back Ashutosh decides to stay in the village along with Geeta and Kaveri Amma.
H. Considering the rural environment, amazingly even the house of Kaveri Amma in the serial reminds you of a similar one seen in SWADES and if I am not wrong then even after a gap of almost a decade, it’s the same actress (Kishori Ballal) playing Kaveri Amma in the film too who actually enriched the serial with an immensely likable warmth and natural ease.
Hence a major part of SWADES more or less remained exactly identical to the storyline and execution of these two-episodes of the series titled VAAPSI produced by Odyssey Video Communications Ltd. for Zee TV. Unfortunately the recently uploaded episodes (at Zee's OZEE app and website) don't have any credit details as such but according to an unconfirmed information available at a link it was Anand Subramanium who directed the two episodes in the mid 90s. Interestingly in case of the film SWADES, the credit of Story has been given to M. G. Sathya & Ashutosh Gowariker whereas Screenplay has been credited to only Ashutosh Gowariker.
Coming to the final section of the film related with the problem of electricity in the village, it was highly inspired from a real life incident when a NRI couple returning from abroad actually built a power generating unit in a village of Maharashtra.
The two social activists were Ravi Kuchimanchi and Aravinda Pillalamarri who returned to India with a mission to serve the country and through the collective efforts of the local villagers and other social organisations (Narmada Bachao Aandolan) were able to build a small power generating unit in the village of Bilgaon, Maharashtra in 2003. The successful initiative soon became a benchmark in the field of rural development and gained even more popularity around the states post the film’s release in 2004.
But unfortunately three years later in 2006, an unexpected flood washed away the innovative, inspiring project coming as a big blow to the villagers and the entire region again went back into the same decades old forgotten era of the ugly darkness.
As per the latest news reports, the project lies abandoned today due to various reasons including lack of water-flow in the river, no revival initiative by the state authorities and the usual hiccups. (Details of which can be read in the links shared towards the end of the write-up)
Among the other worth mentioning features of this new age classic:
1. The film begins with the quote of “Mahatma Gandhi” and interestingly its lead actor is also named as Mohan, most probably inspired from the real name of Gandhi as ‘Mohandas’. And the worth contemplating quote is,
“Hesitating to act because the whole vision might not be achieved, or because others do not share it, is an attitude that only hinders progress”
2. The Opening titles also mention a book "BAPU KUTI: Journey In The Rediscovery of Gandhi" by Rajni Bakshi as an inspiration, since it’s about the people who courageously left their respective corporate careers only to work for the community following the principles of Mahatma Gandhi.
And you can also spot the book lying on the desk in the scene, when Shah Rukh Khan is preparing a carry bag for Gayatri in the book shop.
3. Beginning with the sequences of SRK working in NASA, SWADES is the first Indian film to be shot in the premises of NASA Research Centre and the project SRK is working upon in the film is also an actual NASA project as reported. (The opening credits duly thank the Centre in details.)
4. The soundtrack of the film has a unique instrumental version of the song “Yeh Jo Des Hai Mera” with the lead melody played by a Shehnai, a short phrase of the same melody repeated throughout and a continuous chorus kind of sound that seems to be clipped from another track of the album (quite innovatively). Certainly an exceptional attempt made by A. R. Rahman that actually becomes a major highlight of the music album, probably being the only official instrumental version of a film song using the Shehnai.   
5. Lastly in another track “Pal Pal Hai Bhari” where the act of Ramleela is being staged in the second half of the film, one of the male voices singing the song is of director Ashutosh Govariker himself.
No doubt with such interesting lesser known features SWADES has a lot that can truly inspire many young creative minds as a worth watching new-age classic of Hindi Cinema.  
Cheers!
© Bobby Sing (Harpreet) – Bobbytalkscinema.com
17th August 2016
(With A Big Thanks to CHRIS for reminding me of the subject in his valuable comment) 

Useful links for interested readers:
Tags : Swades Inspirations, Swades inspird from Yule Love Stories, Swades inspired from Zee TV Serial, Swades inspired from real life inspired event at Bilgaon Maharashtra, Swades and real life project at Bilgaon, Swades and Shehnai song, Swades Bapu Kuti, Swades and Mahatma Gandhi, Swades and NASA, Swades as a must watch inspiring film.
 
 
17 August 2016 / bobbysing /
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