11 June 2007

Karvalo in Kabul, Shootout in a Metro and Omkara, the English Teacher!!

Don’t scratch your head already. I will link all of them in one. I know you are perplexed with the title of this post… I am writing this so as not to mess myself up over it all…!

Now…coming to the point…this is what I did during the last weekend. I read Karvalo, watched a couple of missed Hindi movies! During the last week, had watched Shootout at Lokhandwala, the much-acclaimed new movie in town, and Kabul Express..

Well.. I usually don’t take much pains of traveling to a movie hall, plead some friends to accompany me, end up paying a hell of a sum, standing in the queue for hours… well… not my cup of tea, unless I know its worth it ;), and that too, once in a while. So, resorted to my neighbouring CD shop. I had warned him, the shopkeeper, that I would only pay if the DVD/CD were original. However, too much of honesty is also dangerous to health, as they say. So no comments about it.

Now, of all of them, I liked some things here, some things there, but was quiet disappointed with the movies, made up to my disappointment with two great books. One, Karvalo by Poorna Chandra Tejaswi, another, The English Teacher by R. K. Narayan.

Let me come back to the books later. First the movies. My friends, some of them, keep recommending me some movies, those that they liked, those they didn’t like, every thing. I kept postponing most of the movies, for the lack of time, some, for the lack of interest..

Realising that I’ve been too busy off late, felt like relaxing a bit, keeping away my books and other stuffs for a while, making use of my after–dinner–hours to watch some movies that had me pondering upon their releases. Befriended a good CD shop boy and selected a few CDs, asked him to keep them away, for me. And I hired one at a time, on daily basis.

Much to my parents’ amusement, I started getting CDs daily, watching them whole night, cribbing about them the next morning over breakfast. This was almost a natural scene at home, all thru the last week… Only few days when I got late at work, went home and slept.

I started with Kabul Express. This movie had interested me when it was released…and I had the same interest left in me when I started watching it…I must admit, it kept me hooked till the very end. I was pretty much impressed with the background scoring… those locales… the theme… the very idea of a brave heart journalist from India searching for a story out of the plight of war struck Afghanistan. But…a huge disappointment was in waiting for me…the movie was fine and all…well made too, acting capabilities of the star, not questionable… but my rant was against such a huge waste of resources…when they could’ve created a magnum opus, with more relevant and intricate details of how an Afghan lives today…why did the Talibanese punish people the hard way…they could’ve well gone to the core of the issue, instead, there is an attempt to bring some sympathy angle to a terrorist’s life!! This aspect made me crib all thru the day….

Kabul Express is certainly a watch-able flick, but… don’t have any expectations at all…there is no coverage of an Afghan’s day-to-day life, neither his anguish and disgust about Taliban, nor his plight/happiness, nor even Talibanese’ life has got any coverage here… Just watch and forget kind of movie…They have made a big waste of their energy, I mean the film crew…after all, they fail to put forth their views thru the movie.

And there was this movie…my colleague recommended me this one on Tuesday. He had seen it the previous night, it seems. I duly went to my new friend and asked him for another Hindi movie, he gave me this CD. He sounded that it was not a original CD, I hesitated for a moment, but still hired it….Shootout at Lokhandwala.

A movie, well made, fantastic pace, superb action, violence justified….but a total failure on one of the main aspects… “It fails to create an anti-terrorist notion among the viewers, instead it intends to get a sympathetic view for them!!” Story is, as they claim, based on real life rumours…and it looks a personification of rumours, though.

A shoot out well executed by the devil hearted cops, good thinking of bringing the action on screen, and brilliantly made too… but…. The gangster and his gang look meagre, especially the duo of Vivek and Tushar. At no point they seem interested in bringing the fear in you….never they try to show agressiveness…they rather fall pray very meekly.

This apart, Sanjay Dutt and Sunil Shetty steal the show. Amitabh has executed his cameo well. Songs…better not write about them, background scoring is pathetic as well. My rating of the flick would be 2.5, pretty high considering my evaluating standards.

Life in a Metro, true to its name highlighted a few people’s lives, their anguishes, their fast paced lives, their dreams, struggles, ways to win the daily competition, ways indulged in earning the daily bread….all of them are bundled in one metro, so in one movie, a good attempt at it I must say.

Packaged with brilliant performances, good music score, superlative songs…metro offers us everything, except for a good script. Had the script been more carefully written, had the sequences more carefully threaded, we would’ve got a masterpiece of an urban dream.. alas….we have a not so complete, but a good movie… Different shades of a personal life, in a so-called matured world…characterisation of each person in this movie is superb, Dharmendra has given us a good performance to watch out for.

Another reason for me liking this movie is a simple love story, of a married woman and a married man, both married to different people, the inner conflict of both of them while approaching each other. I liked the protagonists of this particular pair, Shilpa Shetty and Shiney Ahuja

Finally, as they show… all the characters meet at a railway station, but none has any time left for others, they all chase life at their own pace and peace… Its, life is, more of a chance rather than a choice, in a metro, as is suggested in the movie.
My Rating 3.

Omkara explains one how a classic movie is made…brilliant script, wonderful locations, real feel settings, brilliant performances, delicate handling of the concept, masterly technical work…I can go on listing the goods of the movie. Now let me figure out the darker side of the movie…tragic ending, but suits the movie, climax has been harried, I thought. The climax must have been better, for such a brilliant movie it is.

Every single actor has given his best, but Saif Ali Khan deserves a special mention for an excellent performance he has delivered. As Langda Tyagi, his performance will go in history books. Its real worth of it, I tell you. Konkona Sen has delivered an extremely delicate performance as Tyagi’s wife. Ajay Devgan and Kareena Kapoor are at their best, as usual. Vivek Oberoi has been a let down, as far as I am considered. Probably, his Shoot out at Lokhandwala performance was in the back of my mind, so I’ve judged him with prejudice, I think. Bipasha Basu has done justice to her role, which is the weak link in the whole movie. Her role could’ve been bettered, I thought.

All in all, a classic, with very good song sequences, well executed adaptation of a legendary literary work. Now.. that’s what is called a history. This movie will be referred for, by the generations to come.

I feel, this movie deserves the best possible rating, so, let me not take any risk.

With the disappointment I suffered in first three cases, and the tragic feeling at the last effort, I was in need of a solace.. I was in need of some good time, refreshing as it must be. To add to my woes, I had been under tremendous pressure at work, we had to deliver a patch last week..so..working like a donkey, day and night…was in need of some peace. I was offered the respite in the form of a weekend. Two days of lease of life. I wanted to utilize this break to the fullest. Realising movies had been a failure in providing me peace, I resorted to books. I carefully chose master pieces….. Karvalo in Kannada and The English Teacher in English……

To be concluded.


Kalyan said...

Liked your movie reviews a lot. Omkara is also my favourite among the four you have mentioned.

Raghu!! said...

At last kanthu liked one movie..should be a ART movie :-).. Nice reviews... I did realise something from two keywords "chances instead of choices"... we should make it other way soon in METRO!

M O H A N said...

I have watched Kabul express incompletely but definetly is worth watching with its gripping sence of movement. Omkara - did not understand much due to local dialacts...

BTW, A donkey is one which works like a doneky - so take care there...


mouna said...

my my, u are very difficult to please, really! u watched 4 movies and u hesitate to rate the last one?

waiting for the slander(post?) ;) on the novels!!

ps: i've not watched a single one that u've mentioned, so i saved myself time and energy :p

rk said...

I Kan't wait to read about The English Teacher.

Srik said...

All of them are worth a watch, And Omkara qualifies to be called a classic, even with its deficiencies.
Thanks for liking my reviews.

Boy!! I like so many movies, in fact, liked all of these too.. but my crib is only that all these could have been classics, but they missed the bus in some way or the other.
Your Chance and Choice anology is good, Yes. I agree...we must work towards it, at individual levels, though!!

M O H A N,
Donkey is averse to papers, but I am not :D :P!! Your comment must be shown to the project managers ;)

Use of local dialect gives Omkara a reality touch, and thus it qualifies for being called a classical.

Yeah...you know..directors must be straight from heaven to satisfy me with their attempt.

slander(post?) ;) on the novels??

I am a small fellow to criticise masterly works ;)
Be good to me or else.....:D:D:D:D:D:D:D

I know u kan't wait to read about English Teacher, but u have read it millions of times, so it wouldnt matter how i write on it, rite?

rk said...

yes, certainly it wouldn't matter how you write. but kan't wait to read with a glass of sprite what you write...

Vijay said...

Thanks for the review... saves me from watching the movie...

Priya (mpriya@wordpress.com) said...

Good reviews... Agree with ur view on Kabul.... lovely shots but there is something that the movie just misses to capture...hmm waiting for the post on the books...

bachodi said...

Looks like you have very very similar taste for movies.(let me put it as , i have similar taste as yours ) I loved omkara and kabul. Karvalo ... I read it atleast 15 times.

Srik said...

I guess you must check out Omkara, if not any other movie.

Yes..yes.Rightly said,Kabul must've been a great movie, but...

Let me put it this way :
We share similar tastes as far as movies are considered!!

And good to know that.

astroshiva said...

Hi friend,
I must say karvalo is one of those gems of kannada literature which unveils new dimensions every time you read it. Its a masterpiece.
These are my posts on the same topic.




Omkara is one of the best shot movies in recent times. The timeless magic of Shakesperean work has been proven again by the one of the most creative men of Indian film fraternity - Vishal bharadwaj

This is my post related to this topic.


Hope to see you comments on these posts.

Kabul Express was a daring attempt and successfully recreating the terror and ruthlessness of Talibanis. I watched this movie recently and loved it. I wanted to watch another movie called as Kandahar directed by Iranian director Mohsen Makhmalbaf.