Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Dombivili Fast....and furious!

"There are no good and bad movies, only good and bad directors." said Truffaut

Nishikant Kamat was a bad writer once, he wrote Julie, but look at the turnaround - he directed "Dombivili Fast"

An excellent work of our times, Dombivili Fast is a must watch not just for any Bombayite or maharashtrians but for each of us who has had a bad time with the 'system'.

Agreed its a purified version of Ghayal - but look at the detail - a man who daily commutes in local trains, dreams of the window seat. This is what he wants!

One day the local train will be empty enough for him to run and grab that coveted seat...

Nishikant Kamat has made a masterpiece....

Bottomline is never underestimate anyone, even someone who has written Neha Dhupia starrer Julie...:)

Friday, May 16, 2008

Dissolve Dharm

a film that looks good on paper isnt always translated into a great visual work.
The example is right here. Dharm - with Pankaj Kapoor in lead and the kind of script - the director had - am sure anyone would have been fascinated to put their money into it, but alas i dont understand the several number of dissolves put inside this 90 minute film - the dissolves almost seem like they are done to save the film from heading towards a disaster in narrative. So what if the singular shots look really beautiful, but they dont make sense half the time - agreed Benares is the most photgraphed city in the whole world yet - the frames should speak something rather than - "o wow- thats a nice frame!"

as far as i am concerned i dont give a damn to a nice frame untill it is adding something to the narrative. Rajkumar Hirani says - the gift of a cinematographer is that if he is able to tell the story along with the director without letting us know the presence of camera - is true cinema technique. Never should the audience be able to tell - "o, look at that..."

When ViDhu Vinod Chopra was having a battle with Bhavna Talwar - the director of Dharm - i subconsciously took Dharm's side as it was not being allowed to go for Oscars - but thank god it dint go - ya it has India in its captive beauty and a script that talks about religion in contemporary India but they have not been brought to sync. The film almost looks episoidic in nature. And Sonu Nigam's voice is just overused till the point u say "o please now... i know u are better than Mohd. Rafi (which i guess he isn't)

For me Dharm only works in parts - esp. Pankaj Kapoor's style of walking - fantastic, just uber cool. U know here is an actor in command but he isnt been given good lines. The hoarseness in his voice in the climax hwen he calls for the kid - that sound is enough to conclude that wow.. this is what i call - great acting...

else Dharmn is all about dissolves/fade ins/fade outs and Benares.

But ya i am happy for the fact that here is a woman filmmaker in Hindi Cinema trying to make a point and is diverting our attention to something very essential in our society. More such women required immediately in Indian cinema scene.!

On Kite Runner - the Book and the Film

the difference between a film and a book is a drop of tear that comes out of your eye!

When i had read the last page of The Kite Runner while on a train i closed my eyes and a tear started from my eye and travelled till my chin, when i watched the film - The Kite runner by Marc Forster - as the credits came the tear appeared at the eye but it stayed there...

but having said that - by no means was the film any lesser than the book - its just that the time spent with the later was more.

The film has some extraordinary photography of the flying kites and the moment when Hassan runs for the kite is simply beautiful - u feel like cheering him... "Run Hassan Run..."

A must watch - The Kite Runner
and more importantly a must read - the book.

"For you, a thousand times over..."

u made a marc - Mr. Forster!

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Through The Olive Trees

The film's ending is open to interpretation and reminds us that movies are only windows into another reality, and it's possible for them to close at the most inopportune times.

- James Bernadelli on Kiarostami's film

Ray's best

There’s something about the classics.. they always give u several reasons to appreciate. And the best part is that every individual finds a different reason to appreciate the film. Watched Ray’s Charulatha – known as his best work (at times even better than Pather Panchali) – undoubtedly Charulatha has frames to die for. Excellent compostions, extraordinary placements of characters in frame, splendid camera movements – Charulatha is Ray’s best work indeed. Although I am far from completing his filmography yet having seen a certain amount of World Cinema - Charulatha can stand tall amongst all. The camera is as efficient as it was of Greg Toland in Citizen Kane. And ya I am damn sure when I make this statement – albeit there are a few technical errors – like a bit of focus here and there – the zoom ins could have been a little smoother but apart from that Charulatha has some amazing camera moments and movements. Critics have appreciated this film for Ray’s perfect adaptation of Tagore’s story but sincei have not read it I cannot comment on that but Ray’s technical and story-telling achievement came together in Charulatha – a musssssst watch anyday!