Updated on Jan 20, 2017 10:56:37

 

 

Entertainment > Reviews

 

20-Jan-2017

'Coffee With D': Coffee With D is fun in a ditzy way

Isn't it amazing what a slew of talented actors can do to an outrageous idea? Think of "Coffee With D" as a boys' day out with Dawood, and you will actually enjoy the implausible goings on.This is a what-if idea carried to an extreme of satirical eventuality...

19-Jan-2017

'The Bye Bye Man': Poorly written and executed

"The Bye Bye Man" is a psychological thriller that has gone terribly wrong.The film is about how an evil entity appears or gains control over its victims. The film works on the premise that controlling one's thoughts can be a real challenge. The simple act...

15-Jan-2017

'Ok Jaanu': Better than Mani Ratnam's original

Welcome back, Shaad Ali. It was a Mani Ratnam remake that gave us Shaad, one of the sharpest, smartest directors in "Saathiya". It is another Mani Ratnam remake that brings Shaad back in form after a string of duds."Ok Jaanu" (ignore the yucky title) is smart,...

14-Jan-2017

'Live By Night': An engrossing period drama

Based on the 2012 novel of the same name by Dennis Lehane, "Live By Night" is a period crime drama that is designed like an old school gangster film.Set in the 1920s post World War I, it is the tale of an honest policeman's son, Joe Coughlin, who returns home...

14-Jan-2017

'xXx: Return of Xander Cage': Action-packed and noisy

This is the third film of the xXx franchise. After skipping the second edition -- State of the Union which was released in 2005 -- Vin Diesel who had featured in the original 2000 film returns in this action-packed spy thriller with pomp and panache.When...

13-Jan-2017

'Haraamkhor': A tad amateurishly mounted

Designed as an art house film, "Haraamkhor", is a slice of life projecting the abuse of minor girls in rural India.With precisely two shots of dark clouds with a silver lining in an otherwise hazy skyline, the film does not offer any hope or resolution to the...

13-Jan-2017

'Ok Jaanu': Hackneyed and superficial

A Gen-Y girl and boy meet, are physically attracted, become friends, live-in together, sans any commitment, then eventually fall in love and get married. Familiar? Extremely. Trite, oft-seen and offering nothing new. That in a nutshell, is what Shaad Ali's...

12-Jan-2017

'Haraamkhor': Nawazuddin Siddiqui makes your flesh crawl

She is 15, going on 18. Or so she claims when the local female doctor examines her for missing her period. At her age, she should be only thinking of the periods that she must not miss when the bell rings. But no. Sandhya is about to be seduced by her sleazy...

12-Jan-2017

'Khaidi No 150': A great tribute to a star

"Khaidi No 150" is the perfect red carpet welcome for Chiranjeevi, who has faced the arc lights after nearly a decade. And he stuns with his charisma and energy.Right from the first frame, Chiranjeevi owns the show and he doesn't go overboard in his attempt...

12-Jan-2017

'Bairavaa': It's Vijay's show all the way

It is appalling that Vijay chooses to do a film like "Bairavaa" when he is already on the right track with projects such as "Thuppakki", "Kaththi" and "Theri", his recent best commercial outings which appealed to both audiences and critics alike. "Bairavaa"...

07-Jan-2017

'Passengers': Remarkable for its attempt rather than success

First things first. "Passengers", a film about two very beautiful people thrown together in outer space, would have been a much finer work if it had not been in 3D. What the 3D technique does is to isolate the audience from the action. Passengers needed the...

06-Jan-2017

'Passengers': A visual extravaganza

Set on a spaceship with 5,000 passengers and 258 crew members, travelling from Earth to colonize a distant new planet, "Passengers" is a romantic tale of two of its passengers, who are "lost, find each other and made life beautiful along the way".The spaceship...

06-Jan-2017

'Allied': A drama so blowdried that it feels fake

It's hard to believe this story of a Canadian intelligence officer who falls in love with a German spy who he thinks is a Resistance fighter.Even if we accept that love is indeed blind, what level of 'Intelligence' does Max(Brad Pitt) demonstrate in his choice...

05-Jan-2017

'A Monster Calls': An engaging fairytale

"A Monster Calls" is a suspense-packed, coming-of-age tale of a boy who is "too old to be a kid and too young to be a man and a nightmare". It is based on the book written by Patrick Ness from an original idea by Siobhan Dowd.As a fantasy fable, the story...

01-Jan-2017

'Assasin's Creed': This game-changer will 'sev' the day

An apple a day keeps the doctor away. One apple 'sevs' the day in this deliberately on-the-boil thrill provider. Ignore the awful reviews. "Assasin's Creed" has some of the most heart-in-the-mouth stunts that you will get to see on this side of "Deadpool".Not...

31-Dec-2016

'Assassin's Creed': Visually impressive but fails to excite

With a tired, tried and over abused premise of finding peace among humanity, "Assassin's Creed" is an original story that expands the series' mythology. Oscillating between the Spanish Inquisition circa 1492 and the present, it is an action adventure film...

25-Dec-2016

'Barry': Vikram Gandhi's film on Obama shouldn't be missed

Let's puff up our chests with pride. This year, Ritesh Batra directed two films featuring a formidable western cast of Jane Fonda, Robert Redford, Charlotte Rampling, Jim Broadbent and more. And now another director of Indian origin helms a biopic, released...

23-Dec-2016

'Vangaveeti': a 'bloody' saga of revenge for power

In "Vangaveeti", based on the gang warfare of the 1980s in Vijayawada, Ram Gopal Varma has spilt more blood than ever, leaving this partly fictionalised story of true events so gory that it looked like the actors were dipped in a pool of blood. This depiction...

23-Dec-2016

'Dangal': Phogat's Sake, Can't Help Falling In Love With Dangal

There are outstanding films. Then there is "Dangal". A film so rich in the flavours of homegrown emotions you feel you are floating in a field of aromatic sensation for close to three hours without feeling manipulated. You come away from this experience so...

22-Dec-2016

'Dangal': Strong performances and Aamir expectedly shine

A fictionalised tale, based on the lives of an amateur wrestler -- Mahavir Singh Phogat and his famed daughters, Geeta and Babita Phogat -- Dangal is an inspirational story of an ambitious father, who, after failing to fulfil his dreams, aspires to achieve...

20-Dec-2016 New Delhi

Indians have mastered music, dance: 'Pop Idol' creator Simon Fuller

Indians have mastered music and dance, and produce more musicals than any other country in the world, says Simon Fuller, the name behind global entertainment hits including Spice Girls and "Pop Idol". On a lookout for Indian faces for his new global pop group...

18-Dec-2016

'Collateral Beauty': Opposite of what nasty reviews say

"Collateral Beauty" has been dealt with by critics the world over with undeserved savagery. It has its deep flaws, yes. And the core premise of a satirical personification of Time, Death and Love, is hard to swallow.But there is so much that is achingly beautiful...

17-Dec-2016

'Wajah Tum Ho': A poorly conceptualised mystery drama

With a warped story replete with major plot holes, "Wajah Tum Ho", is a murder mystery, characteristic of the T-Series stable.The thriller revolves around the hacking of GTN (Global Time Network) a television news channel which claims the highest TRP ratings...

16-Dec-2016

'Wajah Tum Ho': A monstrous absurdity of a film

There is a lovely chick-bonding moment in this grotesque drama of absurdities where Sana Khan asks Sherlyn Chopra: "Are you really going to spend the night with this rapist?""Will you pay my bills?" comes the prompt retort. Then the brazen gold-digger then...

16-Dec-2016

'La La Land': An ode to classic romance musicals

Set in the heart of Hollywood, and designed like a French New Wave film, "La La Land" is a musical love story that dwells upon fate and choices.The film begins with a trail of cars stuck in a traffic jam one winter day, till the crowd breaks out into the...

16-Dec-2016

'Hacksaw Ridge': Best anti-war film ever

Once in a while, there comes a film that transcends its cinematic obligations to become a comment on the quality of human existence. "Hacksaw Ridge" is one such rarity. It communicates the power to change human perceptions on living, to change the way we...

16-Dec-2016

'Gang of Littles': A poorly presented escapade

Advertised as a children's film, packed with fun-filled adventure, writer-director Vijay Kumar Mishra's "Gang of Littles", is a typical Hindi, B-grade potboiler.Set in Dehradun, it is a tale of five neglected children, who in their bid to seek attention, indulge...

15-Dec-2016

'Shor Se Shuruaat': Makes the right noises

"Shor Se Shuruaat" is an anthology of seven indie shorts, whose fledgling directors were hand-picked and mentored by veterans of the Hindi film industry. Released under the HumaraMovie banner, the title of the film is an apt self-proclamation of creating the...

10-Dec-2016

'Dhruva': Ram Charan fails to impress

Dhruva suffers from a very esoteric cinematic disease. It's known as the sickness of slickness. So hell-bent is it to out-slick the original Tamil film "Thani Oruvan", that director Surinder Reddy orders his entire team to workout in the gym of their minds.Ram...

09-Dec-2016

'Befikre': The worst Yash Raj film ever

Remember "Neil & Nikki", the plotless story of a couple played by Aditya Chopra's brother and Kajol's sister, who couldn't keep their hands off one another?"Befikre", Aditya Chopra's new bizarrely subverted directorial undertaking, reminds us of "Neil &...

09-Dec-2016

'Befikre': A cliched entertainer

"Befikre" is like old wine in a new bottle. A familiar story of friendship, love and realisation, a tried and tested premise that is predictable with the same landmark points or milestones that fulfil the dramatic quotient. Only the setting is different, in this...

02-Dec-2016

'Kahaani 2': Will break your heart, grip your senses

It's just another ordinary humid laconic night in Chandanagar, a small dusty town on the outskirts of Kolkata where, as one grinning havaldar informs his senior, nothing ever happens.Well, all that is about to change. Sujoy Ghosh's small-town suspense thriller...

02-Dec-2016

'Kahaani 2': Forced yet convincing

Sujoy Ghosh's "Kahaani" franchise promises twists and lo and behold, "Kahaani 2" delivers them aplenty at a thrillingly racy pace, making the film a compelling watch.With flawed characters immersed in a rescue operation of an abused child, the film is an absorbing...

25-Nov-2016

'Dear Zindagi': Lengthy life lessons sans drama

Gauri Shinde's "Dear Zindagi" is a youth-centric cathartic film which gives you a glimpse of how they deal with life, relationships and the issues that bog them down. Perhaps, it is only the youth who will relate to - the heartaches, seeking their dream job,...

25-Nov-2016

'Moh Maya Money': Complex treatment mars the experience

Money is the hottest topic in the Indian scenario today, and "Moh Maya Money", a "white collar crime" drama, adds to the mass hysteria of the moment. But unfortunately, the hype of the film has nothing to do with the prevailing situation in the country. Instead,...

19-Nov-2016

'Tum Bin 2': It has more than its fair share of flaws

In the torrent of songs that flows freely in this hopelessly romantic love triangle produced by T-Series, there is the much-missed ghazal maestro Jagjit Singh rising from the dead - not unlike the film's heroine's lover who's presumed dead in a skiing accident...

18-Nov-2016

'Force 2': Furiously forceful

There is something inherently attractive about people who fight for their country at the risk of losing their lives. We recently saw Akshay Kumar doing it in the outstanding Neeraj Pandey actioner "Baby".Now it's John Abraham's turn. And trust me, he is good...

17-Nov-2016

'Shut In': Hollow and mediocre fare

Horror films leave an indelible mark on its audience when, they are ground-breaking, edgy, deep and engaging -- either by performance, story, direction or photography -- and they resonate long after the first viewing. Unfortunately, director Farren Blackburn's...

12-Nov-2016

'Desierto': Intense, brutal but incomplete!

As a survival drama, "Desierto" is an intensely brutal, minimalistic, chase thriller.The film begins with the camera panning across the desert and a lone truck moving. The harshness of the terrain and movement of the vehicle on this desolate stretch, sets...

11-Nov-2016

'Rock On 2': Not rocking enough

A sequel to the 2008 film, "Rock On!!", which was about the coming together of a band called Magic, this one is more than the reinforcement of the band.The narrative begins with the band being dismantled once again not because of differences between the...

11-Nov-2016

'Chaar Sahibzaade...': Superior animation uplifts historical saga

This motion capture animation film, is a historical faith film. It takes off from its prequel -- the 2014 released film "Chaar Sahibzaade" and yet, is holistic by itself.Going back in history, nearly 350 years ago, the film recaps the lives of Sahibzaade...

11-Nov-2016

'Dongri Ka Raja': A staid story well-told

Set in Dongri, the underbelly of Mumbai, "Dongri Ka Raja" is a tragic love story of a sharpshooter working for an underworld don.In the backdrop of the Ganpati celebrations, Raja (Gashmeer Mahajani), an orphan who is brought up by an underworld don Mansoor...

11-Nov-2016

'Rock On 2': A rocking sequel

There is a life-defining sequence in the early part of this stylishly-cut film where the excellent Shashank Arora, playing a young struggling musician -- a sarod player in this day and age -- if you must know, pleads with the supremely accomplished Kumud Mishra...

05-Nov-2016

'Ventilator': A heart warming saga

There is a remarkably rugged renaissance reverberating across Marathi cinema. The year started with Mahesh Manjrekar's stunning family drama "Natasamrat" about an aging actor who finds himself questioning a value system which renders a retired patriarch redundant.As...

04-Nov-2016

'Mr. Church': A competently made melodrama

"Mr. Church" is a competently made film that is sometimes emotionally affecting. Though, the story - "Inspired by true friendship," is cliched, the film is largely elevated by the credible performances of its lead pair.It is a tale of love and bonding between...

03-Nov-2016

'Trolls': Bright and cheerfully appealing

Directed by Mike Mitchell and Walt Dohrn, "Trolls" is a colourfully vibrant, adventure, fairytale, based on the long-haired cherub dolls of the same name, which were created in 1959 by a Danish woodcutter and fisherman, Thomas Dam. These dolls are known as "Good...

03-Nov-2016

'Doctor Strange': Outlandish yet formulaic

Director Scott Derrickson's "Doctor Strange" is an original story, based on the character of the same name from the Marvel Comic Universe. It is a story of a flawed hero's personal search for a purpose in life. It also beautifully dovetails the realm of magic...

03-Nov-2016

'Mahayoddha Rama': Action-packed dynamic version

Our epics are constantly being retold and reinvented for centuries and this 2D animation film, "Mahayoddha Rama" is the latest on the block. The story remains the same, but the telling is completely altered. This is not the usual, soft-at-its-core Ramayana...

28-Oct-2016

'Ae Dil Hai Mushkil': Ranbir, Anushka sparkle this Diwali

Karan Johar's "Ae Dil Hai Mushkil" celebrates love and heartbreak in all its hues. It is about the junoon of love and the 'sukoon' of friendship. A romance, an entertainer and a complete filmy film, this one boasts of laughter, racy dialogues, relationships,...

28-Oct-2016

'Ae Dil Hai Mushkil': Flawed nugget, like life itself

Let's get this straight. Karan Johar loves his films to look beautiful. He works towards gleaming, polishing and grooming his locations and actors as though he were building a Taj Mahal for the Gen-Y to rest its reposeful romanticism."Ae Dil Hai Mushkil" (ADHM)...

28-Oct-2016

'Shivaay': A Himalayan blunder

"Tum mein Shiva jaisa kya hai," the lady asks Devgan lustfully.I held my breath wondering what he will show her. Relax. It's just the tattoos which make our hero so loftily heroic. Just to drive in the hero's anointed status, we have the noisy background...

28-Oct-2016

'Shivaay': Defies gravity and conviction

Ajay Devgn's Diwali bonanza for his fans, "Shivaay", touted to be a thriller, in reality, is an action-packed drama that begins and remains on a languid note for much too long, making the film a slog.It is a simple, straight-forward tale of a competent, "extra-ordinary"...

22-Oct-2016

'Love Day: Pyar Ka Din': Tedious and uninspiring

Fun, frolic and fantasy forms the crux of this bromance.It is the tale of three friends, Monty (Ajaz Khan), Sandy (Sahil Anand) and Harry (Harsh Naagar) and their adrenaline-charged escapades. It is an outrageous and outlandish, coming-of-age film that meanders...

22-Oct-2016

'My Father Iqbal': Does not rise to expectations

Set in Bani, a small town on the border of Himanchal Pradesh and Jammu and Kashmir, "My Father Iqbal" is based on a true incident. It is the story of a conscientious engineer, Iqbal Khan, who sacrifices his life for his family, country and his own integrity.Directed...

22-Oct-2016

31st October': A cathartic experience

This film pays tribute to the Sikhs killed after the assassination of Prime Minister Indira Gandhi on October 31, 1984 and those Hindus who helped some Sikhs survive the aftermath of the fanatics' wrath.With over 8,000 Sikhs reported killed after the assassination,...

21-Oct-2016

'Train To Busan': Thrilling with meaningful lessons

Director Yeon Sang-Ho's "Train To Busan" isn't a just mindless, zombie horror film. In fact, it is a thrilling film, packed with meaningful lessons that tend to be moralistic.The film serves as a potent allegory to portray a dog-eat-dog world, where humans are...

21-Oct-2016

'31 October': Opens up wounds that never healed

I was very young on the day Mrs Indira Gandhi died. I remember the nationwide horror of losing a beloved leader and how it was overshadowed by the horror of watching Sikhs being dragged out on the streets and burnt alive for the ghastly assassination.I...

21-Oct-2016

'1:13:7 Ek Tera Saath': An amateurish mishmash of genres

Arshad Siddiqui's '1:13:7 Ek Tera Saath', is a shoddily executed film that includes romance, horror and paranormal activities.Set in Rajasthan, the film follows Kunwar Aditya Pratap Singh, the Prince of Jodhpur who manipulates his way to prevent his treasured...

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