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Old 03-12-09, 12:59 PM   #1
flixtime
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Indian Cinema [PART 4]

For your convenience, following are the links to the first three discussion threads on this topic - Indian Cinema:

PART 1
PART 2
PART 3
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Old 03-12-09, 06:50 PM   #2
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Re: Indian Cinema [PART 4]

Quote:
Originally Posted by nitin77 View Post
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One of Nicholas Ray's finest!

As far as the other Ray goes, the MoC disc of Abhijan is very nice. The two AE collections are not exactly reference quality transfers, but totally watchable and, considering the shape the source materials are in, probably the best these films will look. I'd like to put in a hearty recommendation for Second Run's R2 edition of Rat-Trap, an unsettling, atmospheric Indian film whose apparent initial inscrutability begs repeat viewings.
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Old 03-12-09, 09:27 PM   #3
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Luck By Chance (Hindi - 2009)
Luck by chance, eh? Well, I say it's nothing of that sort. I'll tell you what it is...skill and talent from team Akhtar (debut director Zoya, her brother and lead actor Farhan, and papa and writer/lyricist Javed). I actually received my order for LET THE RIGHT ONE IN today and rather inexplicably I opted to watch LUCK BY CHANCE instead of the highly acclaimed LET THE RIGHT ONE IN...and I don't regret that decision one single bit. This story - a behind the scenes look at the film industry - is certainly nothing new under the sun. Setting that aside, I thought the entire 2 hour and 35 minute runtime of this film was executed to perfection. It was amusing, moving, entertaining, engaging, and all good. Lead actor Farhan Akhtar (ROCK ON!!, and the director of DIL CHAHTA HAI and the DON re-make) and lead actress Konkona Sen Sharma do very well as two unknowns trying to find success in Bollywood. Hrithik Roshan - in a guest role (somewhat of a fictional offshoot of himself) - has significant screentime in the very early portions of the film. And supporting actress Isha Sharvani nearly steals the show in the second half. A number of supporting actors do well in the other roles and the cameos/guest appearances from a host of Bollywood stars are integrated very well. Don't be fooled though, LUCK BY CHANCE is a rather grounded and natural film - at least not anywhere near the over-the-top Bollywood-fest you might expect from all the famous guest stars. The song and dance was somewhat limited but I enjoyed the music quite a bit and it was incorporated very well into the film. The romantic angle to the film was also handled nicely and felt real, not like the usual artificiality of most Bollywood films. Though I wasn't as impressed as others when it came to brother Farhan's directorial debut - DIL CHAHTA HAI - the consensus was that he struck gold with that film. Well, I'll put forth that sister Zoya Akhtar has surpassed her brother...I'll label LUCK BY CHANCE a modern classic of Indian cinema. Though the year is still early, when all is said and done, I really cannot foresee it not being my top pick for 2009. I can't quite believe it myself that I have nothing negative to say.
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Old 03-12-09, 09:43 PM   #4
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And, for a solid double-feature you can pair up LUCK BY CHANCE with another movie I liked a lot - MAIN MADHURI DIXIT BANNA CHAHTI HOON! (2003).
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Old 03-13-09, 03:37 AM   #5
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Re: Indian Cinema [PART 4]

flixtime,

out of curiosity, are you a native hindi speaker?
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Old 03-13-09, 03:37 AM   #6
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Re: Indian Cinema [PART 4]

Quote:
Originally Posted by flixtime View Post
And, for a solid double-feature you can pair up LUCK BY CHANCE with another movie I liked a lot - MAIN MADHURI DIXIT BANNA CHAHTI HOON! (2003).
antara mali is one of the better actresses in india (and quite good looking) and yet struggles to get work at all.
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Old 03-13-09, 06:57 AM   #7
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Hey nitin, as far as languages the only one I know is English, and if you want to count it then maybe the teeniest bit of Spanish...at least enough to get the gist of things when they speak Spanish in old Hollywood Westerns and film-noir movies. And if we are talking language skills when it comes to reading DVD specs then I'm most certainly multi-lingual...knowing how to say "subtitles" and "English" in more languages...ha, ha, ha! And yes, when the subs on these Indian rentals, as they can be every so often, are of questionable quality - like in DELHI-6 - that makes it a little more difficult.

I really liked Antara Mali in MAIN MADHURI DIXIT...but I guess we all know Indian cinema is not a meritocracy. The "royal families" of Indian cinema basically control it all. If you outshine them, like say Manoj Bajpai did to Amitabh Bachchan in AKS, then you sort of get blackballed back into your place. Since I just watched DELHI-6 I was happy to see Atul Kulkarni in a small role in that movie. He is an excellent actor but all he gets are small supporting parts. Even Rajpal Yadav was great in MAIN MADHURI DIXIT but no one is giving him lead roles in any of the comedies. In Hollywood you can make a financially successful movie even without big name actors, but in India, if you don't have Shahrukh, Salman, Aamir, Hrithik, Akshay Kumar, Sanjay Dutt, Sr. or Jr. Bachchan, Ajay Devgan, etc., then it can be a bit of a crapshoot even if you make a good movie. As for actresses in India, that is an even bigger joke, they are entirely disposable...it's always easy to find another pretty face. Actually in LUCK BY CHANCE there is even a brief line of dialogue early on that says the same thing. It is during a scene in an acting class and the instructor is telling the class what you need to be a "hero" in Hindi movies, and then a girl asks what about for actresses, and the instructor sort of brushes it off with a dismissive "yeah, they need those things too" response.
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Old 03-13-09, 06:44 PM   #8
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Re: Indian Cinema [PART 4]

flixtime - you are very lucky to have viewed all the latest movies on DVD even before they get an official DVD release. I don't see any retailer selling Delhi-6 or Luck By Chance.
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Old 03-13-09, 11:31 PM   #9
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Re: Indian Cinema [PART 4]

I guess I'll blind buy LUCK BY CHANCE when it comes out on DVD.
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Old 03-14-09, 01:48 PM   #10
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dvd_freak...DELHI-6, LUCK BY CHANCE, and a lot of the stuff I cover here I'm watching via "pre-release" rentals from my local shop. Granted the picture quality varies to a great degree as does the quality of the English subtitles. I'm not overly particular when it comes to A/V quality, but I have a feeling there's no way a lot of the other fellows around here would subject themselves to such inferior technical presentations. I'm fine with it though, and can't complain much when we are talking a buck or two per rental. Yes, I'm most definitely happy about having access to a local shop where I can get this sort of stuff, as opposed to blind buying the official DVD. Indian cinema is way too hit or miss in quality. If some think my meltdowns over a bad movie a bit over-the-top now, I can't imagine what they'd be like if I actually dropped twenty bucks on it. And even at a dollar per rental, I've still felt ripped off when it comes to some of the movies I haven't liked. Basically, whichever movies I end up liking, I purchase when the official DVD comes out. So, for example, whenever LUCK BY CHANCE comes out officially on DVD, then I'll pick it up for my collection. If you live anywhere near a major metropolitan area, I'd guess it wouldn't be too hard to find yourself a place to pick up these rentals - if you have no objections to the idea. A lot of times you can't tell from the outside of the shops, but even a small Indian grocery store might have movies for rent. Actually I've found the same with other ethnic grocery shops too, problem being - unlike Hindi films - they don't usually put English subtitles on their movies.

toddly, uh-oh now I really feel under the gun, especially after you disliked YAMADONGA so much. And I might be in the hole with nitin too since he didn't like JAB WE MET (and I gave it an enthusiastic review here). Sure hope you end up liking LUCK BY CHANCE. For what it's worth I did get a chance to watch LET THE RIGHT ONE IN, and if I had to re-watch either LUCK BY CHANCE or LET THE RIGHT ONE IN tomorrow, I'd go with LUCK BY CHANCE. And before anyone miscontrues my labelling LUCK BY CHANCE with the term "modern classic", I mean that in the sense that if I were programming an Indian movie channel akin to TBS or TNT here in the U.S., then LUCK BY CHANCE is a movie I'd pick up for heavy rotation.

Some of the Hindi films I'm considering for the near future:
DEV.D - director Anurag Kashyap (BLACK FRIDAY, NO SMOKING), the trailer and plot description (hip and contemporary version of DEVDAS) are doing absolutely nothing for me, I have a feeling I'm not going to like it

TAHAAN - from cinematographer turned director Santosh Sivan, this movie got edged out by TAARE ZAMEEN PAR for India's most recent Oscar submission

BOMBAY TO BANGKOK - from director Nagesh Kukunoor, somehow this slipped under my radar, it was released a fair time ago and met with mediocre reviews, but I think I'll give it a chance

JAANE TU YA JAANE NA - because it's a high-profile release from last year, and I've been avoiding it for too long

BACHNA AE HASEENO - same reason, high-profile release that I've been avoiding

VICTORY - maybe, if nothing else is available at the time

I really need to catch up on some Tamil stuff. And I'm skipping BILLU BARBER since I've already watched the so-so Tamil version, and I have a feeling the Hindi version will not be an improvement.
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Old 03-14-09, 05:04 PM   #11
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Re: Indian Cinema [PART 4]

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/
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Old 03-14-09, 06:03 PM   #12
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Re: Indian Cinema [PART 4]

flixtime,

well then I admire how many bollywood movies you do see, because as you say there is way more miss than hit generally.

and dont worry about being in a hole, these movies are those I've been meaning to watch for ages for various reasons. And I already know I wont care much for most of them due to my tastes, but will make my way through most of them hoping at least 1 or 2 agree with me
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Old 03-15-09, 12:38 AM   #13
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Re: Indian Cinema [PART 4]

flixtime,

haha, well I thought Let the Right One In sucked - I couldn't watch more than 20 minutes of that film!
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Old 03-15-09, 06:29 AM   #14
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Re: Indian Cinema [PART 4]

no way, saw that at the cinemas last week, thought it was great.
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Old 03-15-09, 07:14 AM   #15
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Re: Indian Cinema [PART 4]

Gee, I didn't know that LET THE RIGHT ONE IN was an Indian film!!!
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Old 03-15-09, 09:00 AM   #16
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Re: Indian Cinema [PART 4]

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Originally Posted by toddly6666 View Post
flixtime,

haha, well I thought Let the Right One In sucked - I couldn't watch more than 20 minutes of that film!
It is a REALLY slow starter, but it picks up!
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Old 03-15-09, 09:02 AM   #17
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Re: Indian Cinema [PART 4]

Quote:
Originally Posted by flixtime View Post
dvd_freak...DELHI-6, LUCK BY CHANCE, and a lot of the stuff I cover here I'm watching via "pre-release" rentals from my local shop. Granted the picture quality varies to a great degree as does the quality of the English subtitles. I'm not overly particular when it comes to A/V quality, but I have a feeling there's no way a lot of the other fellows around here would subject themselves to such inferior technical presentations. I'm fine with it though, and can't complain much when we are talking a buck or two per rental. Yes, I'm most definitely happy about having access to a local shop where I can get this sort of stuff, as opposed to blind buying the official DVD. Indian cinema is way too hit or miss in quality. If some think my meltdowns over a bad movie a bit over-the-top now, I can't imagine what they'd be like if I actually dropped twenty bucks on it. And even at a dollar per rental, I've still felt ripped off when it comes to some of the movies I haven't liked. Basically, whichever movies I end up liking, I purchase when the official DVD comes out. So, for example, whenever LUCK BY CHANCE comes out officially on DVD, then I'll pick it up for my collection. If you live anywhere near a major metropolitan area, I'd guess it wouldn't be too hard to find yourself a place to pick up these rentals - if you have no objections to the idea. A lot of times you can't tell from the outside of the shops, but even a small Indian grocery store might have movies for rent. Actually I've found the same with other ethnic grocery shops too, problem being - unlike Hindi films - they don't usually put English subtitles on their movies.
My local Indo-Pak grocery has DVDs of films pretty much the day after they open in the theater up the street. I bought one for $2 because my wife was getting impatient to see Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi again, and even she can't watch it.
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Old 03-15-09, 01:49 PM   #18
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Since we sort of got into it a bit already, let me vent a little in regard to LET THE RIGHT ONE IN:

Spoiler:
Did I think it was a good film? Yeah sure, I suppose. Just like I thought GOMORRAH was a good film too, I suppose. But in a way they were both sort of false positives for me. Yeah they were good (but not very good or excellent), however I didn't care for them. As opposed to something like THE FORBIDDEN KINGDOM that I thought average (aka short of good) but found enjoyable and it satisfied what I was looking for. As to LET THE RIGHT ON IN, I seem to recall a general description such as heartwarming tale of love and friendship, but I saw it differently. My main issue is that the two main characters didn't sit well with me, so I didn't really care what happened to them. Time to start rambling...when we meet Oskar he is already lost in LORD OF THE FLIES mode with fantasies of knifing someone. From what we see later, yes he is being bullied, but it really doesn't seem that bad as that happens with kids all the time. I know they slash his cheek later so that is awful. But still Oskar does come across as a total wimp. Does he ever try and stand up for himself, at least with even a push back or a yell. There are only three of them bullying him and he is physically bigger than two of them. Did he ever try and stand up for himself. Yes, his parents are divorced and his Mom is struggling being a single Mom, but otherwise again a lot of kids have it much worse. The Dad drinks too much, but Oskar doesn't seem completely without care from his parents. He sure looks happy late in the movie when they show the toothbrushing scene with his Mom and they both seem happy with each other. The real world is survival of the fittest and maybe Oskar just doesn't have what it takes and he certainly seems like he was headed towards going postal on his college class or workplace later in his life. And the whole obsession with violent news just makes him seem more creepy. I just thought a lot of people had things much rougher in life without coming across as lost as Oskar. Then we get to Eli. As we learn later Eli was aware of Oskar's mental state from the get go...Eli heard the "stick you like a pig" lines in the beginning. Eli is a hypocrite that states "she" kills for survival. Knowing the fragile mental state of Oskar what does our sage vampire/pedophile do but advise him to strike back hard against his tormentors. In Oskar's state that is basically advising him to bring a nuke to a knife fight. And when Oskar does strike back, it could be put forth that he overescalated the situation with his tormentors (and yes I do know about his cheek getting slashed, and they were making threats of dumping him in the water). So basically Eli's lousy advise leads to the pool climax. You can even say Eli exploits the vulnerable Oskar throughout the film. Eli is your bog-standard tragic vampire and ultimately Oskar moves from being a victim of one set of abusers to a doom of being victimized his whole life as Eli's man servant. Eli knows Oskar is already in the mindset of killing so Oskar would be perfect to carry out killings in order to provide Eli with the required blood for feeding.

Also, I didn't care for how the movie and characters sort of exist in a vacuum, detached from the real world. When Eli first meets Oskar and floats down from the playground climbing bars, I sort of wondered why Eli would be so brazen in action as opposed to being more discreet. Anyone could easily have been watching from the building in the background and become suspicious about Eli's sort of floating down to the ground. Likewise the killings by first Eli's servant and then Eli. They were rather public in my opinion. I'd think vampires would act with much more discretion and in much more isolated places. And the attack at the end, when all the kids go running in their swimsuits out into the night cold, where is the swimming instructor for all that time. He went to address the fire, but when everyone goes running out does he not wonder and come back...or did he just run off into the night to get help. And I mentioned Eli being a hypocrite earlier, in the end attack, Eli kills three people and we are not given the impression that Eli feeds on them. Again is this the wisest course of action for a vampire to brazenly slaughter three young people. It can be said Oskar was put into that situation because of following Eli's earlier advice to strike back hard. So Eli is just cleaning up a self-created mess. But doing so in such a violent way that it seems Oskar has little option but to go away with Eli. Why not handle the situation in such a way - without killing - that Oskar is free of the tormentors and can then go on and maybe lead a normal existence. Or do we accept that Eli knows Oskar is already a lost cause so Eli feels it is okay to use Oskar. If perhaps I had felt more of a liking to Oskar, then maybe the movie could have worked for me in a sad way, but since I didn't feel for Oskar in the beginning, I couldn't care less that he chose a life of servitude, and traded short-term torment for a lifetime's worth. Oskar is the type of person who would have loyally served Adolf Hitler if Hitler had saved him from being bullied by a couple of Jewish teenagers. And like I said, I didn't like Eli either, brooding vampire - lacking the wisdom that should have come with age - who exploited a weak soul for selfish purposes.

Now what might have been interesting is if there was another thread to the story about someone else (another adult) who was truly trying to help Oskar with his trouble...advising with pure intentions of trying to get Oskar on the right path. But maybe Oskar was already too damaged an individual but maybe a little gets through to him and he realizes he is just moving from one tormentor to another kind of tormentor. So we get the end train scene with Eli in the suitcase. But we get another scene after that where Oskar realizing he is hopeless and realizing Eli has also violated him in a way, maybe gets off at a train station, walks into the woods somewhere and sets both himself and Eli ablaze destroying them both. A small act of redemption to make the world a better place, because their own continuing existence down a path to nowhere would do no good for the world as a whole.


Anyway, I realize everyone (except me and toddly) thinks that the movie is a masterpiece, so don't get too bent out of shape by my blowing off some steam...it's just meant as water-cooler talk amongst friends.
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Old 03-16-09, 05:02 AM   #19
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Re: Indian Cinema [PART 4]

Okay, I'm still confused...I thought the title of this forum was INDIAN FILMS Part 4. Saying this, I did find Flixtime's critical summary of this Norwegian film thought-provoking.
The so-called 'cat sequence' really spooked me out. And I'm sure there was hiddend "Indian" theme in there somewhere.
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Old 03-16-09, 06:24 AM   #20
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Re: Indian Cinema [PART 4]

wow. great contribution there and we got it the first time, you don't have to mention to it a second time or a third, no one cared the first time nor the second and specially not the third. This is international talk, which means that at any one time if there are more contributors/talkers that you can count on one hand then is a good thing. why are you so bent out of shape. I didn't know you were a mod , so welcome, didn't realize Mao wasn't the only one for International. So what if its an Indian thread, the movie was mentioned in passing and flix was nice enough to post a his thoughts on a spoiler tag since it was mentioned no big deal, you don't have to click the button. is a film discussion @ International. your lucky that there are more than 3 active threads at any one time. if you really have a problem contact a mod and they will split the post into a new thread but really for what, the same people that replied here would have replied there, 3 posts here 3 posts there. no biggie, move on.

I haven't gotten a chance to watch let the right one in yet but I will eventually pick it up. It played in one of the local theaters for a while (couple of weeks) but I've been too busy to check it out. Same goes without saying that a lot of the indian films of late that would interest me I haven't gotten a chance to check any of them out but when it comes to indian cinema I'm more picky due to the demand of time each one requires plus i find that some films loke good the first 20 minutes and then it turns to something completely different after the credits.

Last edited by BuddhaWake; 03-16-09 at 06:36 AM.
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Old 03-16-09, 11:05 AM   #21
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Re: Indian Cinema [PART 4]

Quote:
Originally Posted by flixtime View Post
dvd_freak...DELHI-6, LUCK BY CHANCE, and a lot of the stuff I cover here I'm watching via "pre-release" rentals from my local shop. Granted the picture quality varies to a great degree as does the quality of the English subtitles. I'm not overly particular when it comes to A/V quality, but I have a feeling there's no way a lot of the other fellows around here would subject themselves to such inferior technical presentations. I'm fine with it though, and can't complain much when we are talking a buck or two per rental. Yes, I'm most definitely happy about having access to a local shop where I can get this sort of stuff, as opposed to blind buying the official DVD. Indian cinema is way too hit or miss in quality. If some think my meltdowns over a bad movie a bit over-the-top now, I can't imagine what they'd be like if I actually dropped twenty bucks on it. And even at a dollar per rental, I've still felt ripped off when it comes to some of the movies I haven't liked. Basically, whichever movies I end up liking, I purchase when the official DVD comes out. So, for example, whenever LUCK BY CHANCE comes out officially on DVD, then I'll pick it up for my collection. If you live anywhere near a major metropolitan area, I'd guess it wouldn't be too hard to find yourself a place to pick up these rentals - if you have no objections to the idea. A lot of times you can't tell from the outside of the shops, but even a small Indian grocery store might have movies for rent. Actually I've found the same with other ethnic grocery shops too, problem being - unlike Hindi films - they don't usually put English subtitles on their movies.
I actually prefer to wait for the real thing. Since I understand Hindi, I usually end up buying DVDs either from Amazon.de or Amazon.fr because of their somewhat better video/audio quality.
Piracy is a huge issue when it comes to Bollywood DVDs and these pre-releases are nothing more than pirated movies (I think). Here is an article on Bollywood and DVD Piracy, you may find it interesting.

Bollywood DVD Piracy
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Old 03-16-09, 04:24 PM   #22
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Re: Indian Cinema [PART 4]

Quote:
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wow. great contribution there and we got it the first time, you don't have to mention to it a second time or a third, no one cared the first time nor the second and specially not the third. This is international talk, which means that at any one time if there are more contributors/talkers that you can count on one hand then is a good thing. why are you so bent out of shape. I didn't know you were a mod , so welcome, didn't realize Mao wasn't the only one for International. So what if its an Indian thread, the movie was mentioned in passing and flix was nice enough to post a his thoughts on a spoiler tag since it was mentioned no big deal, you don't have to click the button. is a film discussion @ International. your lucky that there are more than 3 active threads at any one time. if you really have a problem contact a mod and they will split the post into a new thread but really for what, the same people that replied here would have replied there, 3 posts here 3 posts there. no biggie, move on.

I haven't gotten a chance to watch let the right one in yet but I will eventually pick it up. It played in one of the local theaters for a while (couple of weeks) but I've been too busy to check it out. Same goes without saying that a lot of the indian films of late that would interest me I haven't gotten a chance to check any of them out but when it comes to indian cinema I'm more picky due to the demand of time each one requires plus i find that some films loke good the first 20 minutes and then it turns to something completely different after the credits.
BuddhaWake, it's good to see that you have a sense of humor!! Thanks for responding to my 'multiple' postings...
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Old 03-16-09, 05:12 PM   #23
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dvd_freak, appreciate your taking the time to link that article. Yes, I'm familiar with Dawood Ibrahim and the criminal tentacles embedded in the Indian film industry. I do realize a number of my rentals might be of questionable authenticity. At the same time, from what I gather, the official DVDs and the companies that put them out can be questioned too, and there is a dubious aspect to how some of them might do business too. I suspect whether it be my one dollar rental, or my purchase of a fifteen dollar official DVD, or my attending a theater showing, there is no way to prevent things really because of the strong hold by organized crime on every aspect of the Hindi film industry. At the same time, while I do appreciate and in many ways agree with the point you are making, I feel that utilizing these "rental copies" is far removed from any proximate cause as to aiding those intent on doing misery in this world. And besides, for eight years I dutifully paid taxes to a government run by war criminals, and I purchased gasoline from a bunch of treasonous war profiteers, and I benefitted from a mainstream media who turned a blind eye to everything...and I really didn't do a whole lot about it. So on the final scoreboard I think that my dollar Indian rentals are spit in the ocean when compared to all the support I gave to a not entirely different criminal regime right here in the good ole U.S. of A.
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Old 03-17-09, 02:02 PM   #24
dvd_freak
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Join Date: May 2007
Location: New Jersey
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Re: Indian Cinema [PART 4]

flixtime - thanks for taking time to read the article. Your point is well taken. On a different note - Ghajini (Hindi version) DVD is finally out and the image quality is pretty good.
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Old 03-17-09, 03:27 PM   #25
flixtime
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Join Date: Jul 2002
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Quote:
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?
I'd bet around a month from now for the DVD...roughly the same time as SIVAJI came last year.
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