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Old 03-28-09, 11:52 PM   #51
toddly6666
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Re: Indian Cinema [PART 4]

Quote:
Originally Posted by flixtime View Post
toddly, since you enjoy super-hero movies, here are a few clips to amuse you (perhaps). They are from a box-office hit, Telugu comedy movie - READY - that just came to DVD. I've seen the movie and while I don't recommend it, the clips of "Krrish" and "Spider-man" might be of minor interest to you.

Krrish in action - note, skip ahead to the 9-minute mark

continuation of Krrish in action - note, duration is first 1 minute and 15 seconds

Spider-man in action - note, first two minutes
wow, that was just...painful! The spiderman one wasn't that bad. If they actually got one of the more official Spiderman suits, it would actually be good. But the outfit is too 1970s live action show spiderman!

My expectations are getting high now after good Indian films such as Eklyava, Jodhaa Akbar, Slumdog Millionaire, In the Name of God, Water, and now Luck By Chance. I don't know if I can watch those crappy tamil flicks anymore - Just Shankar movies and no one else!

I'm telling ya, the best Indian directors are females!
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Old 03-29-09, 12:56 AM   #52
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Re: Indian Cinema [PART 4]

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Originally Posted by TheDoug View Post
I've been waiting for a legimimate dvd release of DASAVATHAARAM since seeing the trailer for this last June. Any heads up as to when and where one might purchase this film? http://www.galatta.com/tamil/movies/dasavathaaram/
I don't know when the legit DVD will release but I saw this theatrically and thought it was terrible. Kamal Hassan is a fine actor, but his obsession with makeup and prosthetics and image transformation has veered into Eddie Murphy territory. And the makeup isn't even good. He wears oddly inexpressive rubber masks for many of the roles, and his non-Indian accents are silly.

The film itself is a bloated mess and for what should have been a light entertainer, is surprisingly violent.
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Old 03-29-09, 12:09 PM   #53
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Re: Indian Cinema [PART 4]

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Originally Posted by flixtime View Post
Woo-hoo! Glad you liked it toddly! I look forward to reading your full take when you post your DVD review. Now that we've set the bar so high for this, I hope zombeaner (and others) can still see clear to approach it cleanly and without demanding too much from it.
I thought the trailer looked good and my wife was looking forward to this one as well. I'll probably pick it up when I go back to the store this week to pick up Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi
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Old 03-30-09, 07:08 PM   #54
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Re: Indian Cinema [PART 4]

I just finished watching Aamir Khan's directorial debut film TAARE ZAMEEN PAR which I just acquired from the on-line shop, WebMallIndia.com. For a first time director I thought Aamir handled this overtly sentimental drama about a child with Dyslexia quite well. I liked the key child actor (Darsheel Safary) in the title role, although at times his histrionic's at time seemed a bit over the top. Nevertheless I found this non-traditional Bollywood film refreshing in that it utilized a fairly down-to-earth story to convey a story about educational misconceptions held both by parents and teachers when it came to understanding the needs of a special needs or gifted child. Also, the various musical sequences seemed to stray away from the usual over-florid dance numbers traditionally found in most Bollywood films and instead Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy and Shailendra Barve music and Prasoon Joshi and Amole Gupte's lyrics seemed to be rooted in lyrical themes of hope and fantasy as perceived by Ishaan Awasthi's perspective. The animated credit sequence captured the spirit of the film along with assorted cgi based sequences througout the movie. I can easily see why the Walt Disney company acquired the US distribution rights to this endearing film for an eventual dvd release.
A region 1 three-disc set is forthcoming from Disney come this September:
http://www.amazon.com/Like-Stars-Ear...8454159&sr=1-2
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Old 03-31-09, 01:47 PM   #55
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Re: Indian Cinema [PART 4]

I wish Disney releases TZP on BD, like Sony did for Saawariya.
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Old 03-31-09, 04:55 PM   #56
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Re: Indian Cinema [PART 4]

So what's up with Jodhaa Akbar? Did UTV sell the dvd rights to any other american company? Are we going to be stuck with this letterboxed version forever?

I cannot believe that nothing would be going on with Jodhaa Akbar. I could understand if they are currently chopping it down to a shorter time to release it in USA. Does anyone know the status of this movie? Is the status over? Released on UTV DVD and that's it?
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Old 03-31-09, 07:33 PM   #57
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Re: Indian Cinema [PART 4]

I don't believe UTV sold the rights to Jodhaa Akbar to anybody. They did the DVD release for North America and 'Big Home Videos' did it for India. Your best bet is to get the French BD release which is region coded and no english subs.
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Old 03-31-09, 09:34 PM   #58
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Re: Indian Cinema [PART 4]

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I don't believe UTV sold the rights to Jodhaa Akbar to anybody. They did the DVD release for North America and 'Big Home Videos' did it for India. Your best bet is to get the French BD release which is region coded and no english subs.
I'm not going to watch an almost 4-hour film with a lot of dialogue and no English subtitles!....so is that it then? Nothing else is going to be done with Jodhaa Akbar?
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Old 04-01-09, 04:35 AM   #59
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Re: Indian Cinema [PART 4]

you maybe able to grab subs off the net for it. The french disc has beautiful picture quality (dvd).
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Old 04-03-09, 10:24 PM   #60
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Gulaal (Hindi - 2009)
"Close" only counts in horseshoes, handgrenades, and bad breath. Director/writer Anurag Kashyap (BLACK FRIDAY, NO SMOKING) is an interesting cat...a bit of a drama queen and with an overinflated sense of himself, yet it's hard to deny that he is rather unique as an actual artist in the world of Indian movies...a place inhabited primarily by businessmen manufacturing product for the masses. His latest film - GULAAL - ventures into rather familiar territory - the world of student politics. Coming from Anurag Kashyap, this film is not too far removed from the tone of BLACK FRIDAY, so it is a gritty and cutting look into this realm and also takes into account how it figures into politics at large. While there are a number of significant supporting players in this tale, the general thrust of things is through two characters. One is a new student at the college played by a relatively unknow actor by the name of Raj Singh Chaudhary, while the other - a sort of godfather-like political/social lead - is played by familiar actor Kay Kay Menon. Kay Kay Menon turns in a strong performance in his role. Raj Singh Chaudhary however is very bland and sort of a wet noodle as a performer. Despite that, I'd say that perhaps the first hour of this film was near excellent. So much so that I thought my earlier proclamation of LUCK BY CHANCE going unrivaled in 2009 was going to be struck down very early. But, as was the case with NO SMOKING, things start to crumble after maybe the hour mark and the decline continues steadily to a point where I nearly lost interest as the film just sort of fizzles at the end. I generally try to keep my thoughts spoiler-free so I'll continue that and be somewhat vague as to the issues I had. First off, Raj Singh Chaudhary's student character in the beginning is portrayed as rather naive, though as a viewer I was still able to identify with him. However, as the film goes on, instead of being seen as naive, I started to think him a complete fool. There is also a sort of femme fatale character that comes into play, but I didn't find the character convincing and I didn't buy into things as a romantic tanget gets some more play in the second half. As a result, the film loses its way from the strong story and foundation of the first hour. So instead of an epic look at student politics, the movie drops back to character and relationship-level scheming between two and later a third character. And I also didn't buy into this third character - who we've seen to be very shrewd - displaying some questionable judgment later in the film. I guess it all started to feel like a mediocre royal court tragedy. The supporting characters still remain strong throughout but the movie is let down by the poor handling of these three focal characters. There is some solid song and dance well-mixed into the film, though perhaps a little of it could have been trimmed from later in the movie. The visual presentation of the film is strong throughout. I think the runtime was a little over two hours and twenty minutes or so. As was the case with NO SMOKING, I'd call GULAAL a missed opportunity, but I'd still definitely recommend it for viewing. That said, the feeling I'm left with is disappointment...the first hour was tremendous...and then it started to all fall apart.


Earlier I mentioned some films I was considering for future viewing, but I'll drop them in priority for now. I thought Kashyap's DEV D would stay high on the list, and I was super eager to check it out based on how GULAAL started, but now my enthusiasm for seeing it has cooled. Next up will be EK THE POWER OF ONE...what I assume to be a mid-grade, check-your-brain-at-the-door masala actioner with Bobby Deol and Nana Patekar. Then maybe the horror film 13B or Deepa Mehta's VIDESH, or preferably instead of those two, the one I most certainly want too see - Nandita Das' directorial debut - FIRAAQ.
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Old 04-04-09, 10:32 PM   #61
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Ek - The Power of One (Hindi - 2009)
They got me...but no harm done. I was sort of curious about this film, which by its description - masala action movie - seemed rather old-school when compared to where Hindi cinema is now. Plus, I was in the mood for something less substantial in my viewing schedule so I decided to give it a go. From the very familiar opening scene and a familiar name in the opening credits, I was immediately struck by a sense of deja vu. I hadn't been aware of the fact when I rented it, but this movie is actually a remake of the 2005 Telugu-language blockbuster ATHADU (which I covered here maybe three years ago). The name in the credits that tipped me off was Peter Hein who generally handles the action in big-budget Telugu and Tamil movies such as ATHADU, ANNIYAN, SIVAJI, SAINIKUDU, etc., and he did the action in the Hindi version of GHAJINI too. Bobby Deol is the lead actor in this Hindi version whereas Mahesh Babu was the lead in the Telugu version. In that department, I'd say the clear winner is Mahesh Babu; I found Bobby Deol unimpressive and not all that believable in his role.. Nana Patekar - though he doesn't appear until maybe forty minutes in - has a supporting role as a cop trying to track down hitman Bobby Deol. Prakash Raj was the officer in the Telugu version. On the scorecard here, Nana Patekar is the winner and he handles the somewhat naughty (in this Hindi version) comedic aspect of his role very well. Essentially this film is a rather faithful remake, however with a runtime of two hours and twenty minutes, this Hindi version does slice more than a half hour off the Telugu version's runtime. Basically they cut out a lot of the film's South Indian-ness which comprised the Telugu version's middle section. This Hindi version still feels South Indian or old-school Bollywood, but they definitely scaled back the romance and comedy in this remake. Naturally some character/relationship building is sacrificed, but all-in-all it is an acceptable trade-off. I'd guess the song and dance time in this film is a little less than the Telugu version, however what song and dance is left is entirely disposable. Also, the action was much better done in the Telugu version. Basically, the Telugu version felt like a big-budget event film, with production/technical values you would expect for a film of that level. The action and song & dance were better in the Telugu version, as was the lead Mahesh Babu. This Hindi remake feels more like a B-movie, with Nana Patekar being its strongest point. However, for international audiences, maybe the Hindi version might be more acceptable because it carves away a lot of the original's comedy and romance (which I don't recall being very good)...yet if I had to watch one over again I still might lean towards the Telugu version maybe. So each version has some strong areas that the other does not. In either case, we are not talking necessary viewing. Basically a fair watch if you are receptive to this type of film, which I expect most are not. From my perspective, it sort of delivered what I was expecting, so I can't really be too critical of things...though I do wish the song and dance was much better. As was the case with the recent GHAJINI remake, I suppose the greatest point of interest for me was in seeing how this version compared to the Telugu original.

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Old 04-07-09, 05:57 PM   #62
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Re: Indian Cinema [PART 4]

flixtime, or anyone else you mentioned the film GHAJINI in the context of your previous review. What's your take on this film Cast: Aamir Khan, Asin Thottumkal, Pradeep Rawat, Jiah Khan, Riyaz Khan
Director: A.R. Murugadoss
Producer: Tagore Madhu and Madhu Mantena
Music: A.R. Rahman
Lyrics: Prasoon Joshi
Was it a worthwhile remake? I'm planning on renting this one from Netfflix.
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Old 04-08-09, 10:43 AM   #63
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TheDoug, I think the best insight I can offer is to refer back to PART 3 of this discussion. On page 1, I talked about the Tamil version of GHAJINI. And on page 8, I talked about the Hindi version, including a compare/contrast of both versions. Other than that I can't think of too much I can add. Both versions are "okay" for a watch...you can do better, you can do worse...if you are interested then sure give it a viewing.

As to it being "worthwhile", I understand what you mean by that term coming from an International perspective. At the same time, judging it exclusively within Indian cinema, it isn't quite appropriate to look at it from that viewpoint. Basically, North Indian (Hindi/Bollywood) audiences are not very receptive to watching South Indian films, sometimes they might dub a South Indian film for North India, but generally they just go the remake route. There are a number of reasons such as language, and general cultural things. Remakes are very common in Indian cinema with a hit Hindi movie being remade in Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam, etc. And it works the other way too, when a hit Malayalam movie will get remade in Telugu, Tamil, Hindi, etc. Actor Sanjay Dutt's hit MUNNABHAI movie was remade in Tamil and Telugu I believe. Another example is the hit Hindi movie BHOOL BHULAIYAA from a year or so ago. If I remember right that was first done in Malayalam back in the 1990's, then I believe it was done in Tamil maybe a few years back, and I recall there was at least one more South Indian version, before the recent Hindi version. Also, the recent Hindi movie BILLU BARBER was notably done as KUSELAN in Tamil, and prior to that the original I believe was actually sourced from Malayalam cinema. These are just a small fraction as examples. Even if there never ends up being a Hindi version of a movie, Tamil and Telugu films remake each other on a regular basis.
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Old 04-15-09, 10:52 AM   #64
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8X10 Tasveer (Hindi - 2009)
The law of averages. This is the latest directorial effort from Nagesh Kukunoor (HYDERABAD BLUES, 3 DEEWAREIN, IQBAL, DOR). I guess everyone is familiar by now with how highly I rank Kukunoor's DOR. Well, with 8X10 TASVEER, director/writer Kukunoor has subjected me to something on the opposite end of the spectrum. Yup, this is the worst film I've watched in 2009, and I'd have to implement a negative rating scale to rank this where it deserves. The somewhat sexy marketing of this movie as a supernatural/sci-fi thriller is ultimately a gimmick to add some glamour to what otherwise is a horribly written murder-mystery. The lead is Akshay Kumar (maybe I need to start avoiding this guy's movies (SINGH IS KINNG, CHANDI CHOWK TO CHINA)). Basically his character has a supernatural gift whereby he can look at a photo and in doing so can establish a visual and mental link with what happened at the time of the photo. This is introduced very early on when he helps find a hiker who is lost in the woods. And the remainder of the story is Akshay Kumar making this visual/mental jump via a photo of his father that was taken just prior to his father being murdered. This jump to events on a boat quickly becomes tiresome as you are subjected to the same scenes over and over as Kumar tries to figure out which family member/friend might be responsible for his father's murder. The story is written terribly, just plain idiotic and senseless. Try and think of the worst episode of any sci-fi anthology show you've ever seen...got it, well I promise you that episode is incomparably better than this movie. Though the rental copy I watched was of unusually poor quality, I still think this movie was surprisingly amateurish and cheap for a Bollywood flick. And it is sub-DTV, student film material that felt like the work of a clueless first-time director. The runtime was just under two hours and even that felt padded given the material is short film quality at best. There is a needless romantic ballad in the middle and an ill-fitting Indo-rap song during the end credits. And how bad is it watching these middle-aged Bollywood A-listers trying to go all gangsta and seem cool. Apparently this movie was a troubled shoot with delays and cost overruns, on what I don't know because there isn't much there, except for shooting in Canada (the setting of the story) and South Africa. Maybe this whole project was just an excuse for some sort of money laundering operation. There was no reason this film could not have been shot in India. I have nothing good to say about this movie, and I have lost a lot of respect for director/writer Kukunoor. After a good run with some of the other Indian films I've watched, 8X10 TASVEER is one of those experiences that makes me want to bypass Bollywood for the next month. Hmm...what else, to try and end with something positive, I did watch EAGLE EYE (starring Shia LaBeouf) the other day. Now that movie was a really unexpected surprise. A very entertaining thriller with a nice commentary on modern times. I haven't read too many reviews yet, but so far I gather critics did not react to it favorably. Personally, I find that to be a real headscratcher. I'd actually rank it with my first-tier favorites of last year, and I liked it better than stuff like DARK KNIGHT, IRON MAN, INDY IV, HELLBOY 2, HANCOCK, FORBIDDEN KINGDOM, and also more than acclaimed foreign efforts such as THE GOOD THE BAD THE WEIRD, LET THE RIGHT ONE IN, IP MAN, RED CLIFF, SPARROW, etc. If critics want to call EAGLE EYE "brainless", well I'll put forth that they haven't seen "brainless" until they've watched 8X10 TASVEER (couldn't resist firing one last broadside).
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Old 04-15-09, 12:06 PM   #65
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Re: Indian Cinema [PART 4]

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The lead is Akshay Kumar (maybe I need to start avoiding this guy's movies (SINGH IS KINNG, CHANDI CHOWK TO CHINA))..
Bravo...that's my recommendation...I avoid movies with certian actors according to this reason:
1. if I have the urge to punch actor in the head repeatedly

Akshay Kumar is just one big dick-head. He even literally looks like a dick, with eyes, mouth, arms, and legs.

I'll rent Chandi Chowk to China, but I've learned to avoid Kumar only after watching three of his movies - Aankhen, Andaaz, and Khakee.
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Old 04-17-09, 09:00 PM   #66
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Following is the youtube link to a reasonably interesting looking trailer for a Telugu movie - ARUNDHATI - that was released in theaters earlier this year:

ARUNDHATI (Telugu - 2009) - trailer at youtube

The movie was a big hit at the Telugu box office, and the dubbed-into-Tamil version seems to have done okay too with Tamil audiences. It has now been scheduled for a Hindi-language remake.
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Old 06-29-09, 05:39 AM   #67
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Re: Indian Cinema [PART 4]

saw Delhi-6.

Rubbish ending and largely plotless but I quite enjoyed the first 3/4 which is well shot with some decent characterisation, good sprinkling of humour and with an interesting theme (that is thoroughly shafted in the last act).
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Old 07-02-09, 12:45 PM   #68
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Re: Indian Cinema [PART 4]

Among the Tamil movies that released in '09 so far, I would recommend Yavarum Nalam and Ayan. I also want to suggest this movie reviewer's website, whose ratings I find to be largely reliable and in line with my tastes.

www dot geocities.com/bbreviews/

(not able to post the URL in normal format, due to low post-count)

I like the above reviewer for primarily saving me from having to sit through a lot of the mindless junk that gets churned out of the Tamil movie industry. I just pick movies that he rates 2.5 stars and above, and so far it's worked well for me (by this yardstick, about 10 movies make the cut each year).
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Old 07-04-09, 12:12 AM   #69
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Re: Indian Cinema [PART 4]

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Originally Posted by confusedintx View Post
Among the Tamil movies that released in '09 so far, I would recommend Yavarum Nalam and Ayan. I also want to suggest this movie reviewer's website, whose ratings I find to be largely reliable and in line with my tastes.

www dot geocities.com/bbreviews/

(not able to post the URL in normal format, due to low post-count)

I like the above reviewer for primarily saving me from having to sit through a lot of the mindless junk that gets churned out of the Tamil movie industry. I just pick movies that he rates 2.5 stars and above, and so far it's worked well for me (by this yardstick, about 10 movies make the cut each year).
thanks for that link
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Old 07-26-09, 09:50 PM   #70
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Better late than never I suppose...

The cable channel IFC (ifc.com) here in the U.S. has been showing some Hindi films the last few weeks in anticipation of a mini-series - BOLLYWOOD HERO - they have coming in early August.

A movie has been showing every Sunday morning in July and so far the schedule has been JOHNNY GADAAR, BHEJA FRY, BLUE UMBRELLA, and today was KIDNAP. BLUE UMBRELLA would have been a choice viewing if anyone was lucky enough to catch it when it aired. Anyway, the aforementioned isn't much good to anyone now.

However, the August line-up is still an option and kicks off on:

Sunday, August 2 - DON (remake version)
Sunday, August 9 - JAB WE MET
Sunday, August 16 - GHAJINI (Hindi version)
Sunday, August 23 - RANG DE BASANTI
Sunday, August 30 - ? (not yet posted)

I've covered all four of the above at some point or another in this thread, with DON and JAB WE MET both earning strong praise from me. I suppose the news isn't of much interest to the regulars in this thread, but maybe for some others who might be curious, it might be a nice opportunity to sample some of what we've been talking about.
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Old 07-31-09, 03:18 PM   #71
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I won't be bumping this thread as a reminder every week, but just this one time to remind that DON (remake version) will be airing on IFC this coming Sunday morning aka 10am on August 2nd (see ifc.com for more specifics).

As for the remainder of the schedule:

Sunday, August 30 - SINGH IS KINNG

Not sure if the Bollywood airings will continue into September.


That BOLLYWOOD HERO three-part miniseries (starring Chris Kattan) is set to air the evenings of August 6th, 7th, and 8th at 10pm with a runtime of 65 minutes each night.
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Old 07-31-09, 08:54 PM   #72
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Re: Indian Cinema [PART 4]

saw Dostana the other day, oh dear it was like watching an adam sandler film in hindi. Granted, Priyanka Chopra looked absolutely droolworthy but this has put me off trawling through more of the hindi films for a while.
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Old 08-01-09, 11:31 AM   #73
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DOSTANA, nitin? Even I haven't dared to try that one. Appears there was a family vote to select the evening's viewing...and you lost. Like you said, at least you got Priyanka Chopra eye-candy to help offset the experience. Anyway, hope you are well-removed from all that nonsense going on down your way...meaning all those racist attacks on Indian/Asian students.

For the curious, here is a youtube trailer for that BOLLYWOOD HERO mini-series coming to IFC:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oDq84gVmoB8

What with the recent Hindi film industry strike and all, I haven't watched anything really as far as Indian cinema. One I did watch:

Twenty:20 (Malayalam - 2008)
Watched it too long ago to recall specifics. This was basically a film project that brought together most of the big stars - Mohanlal, Mammootty, etc. - in Malayalam cinema. As such it fared very well at the box office in Kerala. If I recall correctly, I believe this movie was conceived as a project for charitable purposes...so the performers worked for free...I believe the beneficiary of their charitable efforts was some sort of film industry service agency. All-in-all, the film was only fair and I wouldn't bother with it unless you are a fan of all the performers. Basically, it was a 3-hour-plus masala/action type flick...with not much song/dance and what there was wasn't any good at all. Skip it.


In other matters, I'm looking forward to picking up the UK/Bangladesh effort THE LAST THAKUR (2008). The U.K. DVD from Artificial Eye is releasing on October 5th and is currently up for pre-order at Amazon UK.
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Old 08-01-09, 09:28 PM   #74
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Re: Indian Cinema [PART 4]

flixtime,

actually it was a self chosen title It was recommended by a friend who is usually a reasonable guide, but not this time. The movie's essentially a reworking of I Now Pronounce you Chuck and Larry (or so I assume from the similar plotline of that Sandler film) and is rubbish all round.

And yeah, thankfully out of that stuff till now.
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Old 08-02-09, 05:32 AM   #75
nitin77
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Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 951
Re: Indian Cinema [PART 4]

against my better judgment, tried Race. Now this just has to be one of the most downright and laziest films I've recently seen. Even on a B thriller level, it disappoints. On the plus side, as seems to be the norm, theres plenty of female eye candy in Bipasha Basu, Katrina Kaif and Sameera Reddy.

Also, I realised I never properly commented on Jodhaa Akbar. I quite enjoyed it overall although it definitely worked more on a spectacle level than a dramatic level. Part of this was because the supporting characters were *very* one dimensional and also Aishwarya Rai wasnt quite upto the task. Hrithik Roshan, though, surprised me with a quality understated performance (a rare thing in indian cinema).

But what really makes the movie is the grandeur, the visuals made my jaw drop plenty of times and A R Rehman's music is equally impressive. The song about 2/3 of the way through, Azeem o Shaan Shahenshah, is a truimph of cinematography, choreography and music, and also shows up CGI bigtime.
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