Category: Movies & Entertainment Page 1 of 9

Mission Impossible : Fallout – Movie Review

Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to watch and get entertained. And nothing else.

This franchise is not going to self-destruct itself anytime soon. And if you don’t have time to read any of what I write here, just go watch it. MI:Fallout is pure entertainment. Synonymous with what it has always brought, except maybe 2 of those?

Fallout grounds the storyline by giving credence to the believable Ethan Hunt who’ll falter and yet (somehow) make it. Each characters gets to do so much in the film apart from pulling off those amazing stunts themselves. There’s a lot of depth in each of their transitions towards this 6th instalment. It’s so good to see Elsa(played by Rebecca Fergusan) back. That character in Rogue Nation was so well written that seeing her again weaved into the storyline seemed wonderful. Henry Cavill also has a great screen presence and his banter with Tom is clever.

Lots of references to previous MI films (which makes you go ahaan!) and yet packaged in a more grounded fashion. The lingering emotions, complicated relationships, deciet, shocks are the usual.

The stunts, as always, extravagant displays of ‘what-the-hell-is-he-doing’ knowing very well that all of this is not green screen stuff is sheer amazing. And still, the bathroom brawl involving both Cruise and Cavill is simply the best. Talk about old school. My other favorite is Tom Cruise running at a speed which puts you to shame.

It’s a movie which sets up the next MIs on track and definitely sets up expectations of more jaw-dropping stuff down the line. I mean, the guy is 56 years of age, and there’s clearly no stopping him.

Go watch the movie on the big screen. It’s worth your money.

I’m rating this 4.5/5.

October Movie Review: A beautiful poetry

Music from stringed-insruments in the background while the flowers spread themselves on multiple canvases, October seeps into your heart. The story pulls you in; doesn’t drain your emotions but helps you find it scattered around like flowers on the grass early in the morning.

October is beautiful. Written beautifully.

It’s so realistically portrayed and yet makes you feel a new set of emotions as you dwelve into it. It doesn’t demand you to get involved and neither it’ll turn itself into a sob-fest. Rather, it strikes the right chords to not let you go.

The plot of October is not important to talk about. There’s not much there and rightly so. Director Shoojit Sircar’s October isn’t a plot driven film, anyway. Dan (played by Varun Dhawan) goes from being irritated with everything to caring for someone without actually knowing her.

From, ‘Where is Dan?’ to ‘Where is Shiuli?’ is the transition which the plot is about.

Juhi Chaturvedi, who has written Vicky Donor and Piku before, has a completely different script here. One that makes you live the characters’ grief with a few awkward laughs.

There’s no place for loud melodrama, nor overtly expressive emotions in October. The pace and characters move in their own time. You see the transition in all of them. Right from Varun Dhawan, who is really good, to every other character in the movie.

The camera work is very detailed and so is the background score. Uninterfering and yet adding to the flow of October’s poetry at play.

I’d be wrong to say that this movie is for everyone. It is slow. But just the right kind. I loved the movie and pretty sure this will be rewatchable like all of Shoojit and Juhi’s movies.

It’s a 4/5 from me for October. It is meditatingly beautiful.

Short Reviews of all the Oscar Nominated Movies 2018

We’re just a few hours away from the Oscars 2018! I’m just reviewing the movies nominated for the ‘Best Picture Category’ in Alphabetical Order.

Short Review of “Call Me by Your Name”

This film transports the viewer to Italy along with the magnificent story that it presents. One of the best romantic movie to have come out in recent times, ‘Call Me By My Name’ is about a 17-year old, Elio, exploring his sexuality and falling in love with a 24-year old American, Oliver, who is visiting Italy to assist Elio’s father in academic paperwork.

Amazingly well-layered conversations that speak to you, beautifully captured scenes,

Although this one doesn’t go into the social complexities of being Gay instead focusses on the emotional aspects that individuals themselves go through, is still compelling to watch. And love.

Simply put, this is an amazing Love Story. Watch this.

P.S Listen to all the songs of this movie. Thank me, later.

Short Review of “Darkest Hour”

Churchill glorification just isn’t my thing and this one (thankfully) doesn’t entirely focuses on that, plus adds a few other viewpoints.

Gary Oldman pulls off the Churchill look with elan and the story moves at a brisk pace, not letting you feel bored at all. Having watched Dunkirk, there’s a context to the happenings and it all feels like reading a few pages of history.

The one quote that stayed with me, “Churchill mobilized the English language and sent it to battle.”

Short Review of “Dunkirk”

Nolan’s Dunkirk follows a nonlinear storyline as it tries to deliver a war-story with a music that keeps you on edge a brilliant cinematography. And it does. However, with the absence of a central character in the story your itch to root for one character, like every other Nolan movie, remains unfulfilled. But perhaps, that was the intended tone Nolan wanted to give Dunkirk.

To make heroes out of the spirit of survival. In a movie bereft of one-liner masterpieces, when one soldier upon returning home explains, ‘All we did was survive’ ‘And that’s enough’ pat comes the reply.

Read the detailed review here

Short Review of “Get Out”

Scary? Yes, a little. But you won’t ‘get out’ of this engaging and enjoyable watch that is a movie about the entrenched racism of the society in the mask of Horror.

Apart from the overall arc of the horror/thriller, the brilliance lies in the way racism of everyday lives has been portrayed. This movie shows the awkwardness, still persistent, among races. The apparent differences still are the ‘elephants in the room’.

Watch this edge-of-the-seat horror/thriller. Pretty sure this is going to make a lot of people uncomfortable.

Short Review of Lady Bird

One of those rare çoming-of-age movies which don’t get limited to 1 aspect of life. Lady Bird is about Finding Love, Relationships with parents, Changing friendships, education, the zeal to grow up and leave a place, and lots of Teenage Angst thrown in.

Everyone can see themselves in the movie. From Parents trying to make ends meet to trying hard to explain to their kids on things they do for them, the inability of showing love to their kids, this covers it all. Of course, this centers around how ‘Lady Bird’ tries to fly, out and above everything.

One dialogue that stayed with me of a conversation with Lady Bird and her mother:

“I want you to be the very best version of yourself that you can be.”

“What if this is the best version?”

Saying that I loved this movie would be understating my feelings.

Short Review of “Phantom Thread”

Phantom Thread is Surreal/ It digs deep into the human psyche and how the needs shape behavior. How certain people just don’t change, while others change to change the latters’ unwillingness.

Daniel Day-lewis is a genius in his portrayal of the Couturier and the detailing of how he goes about carrying out his trade, its effect on his personality and behavior just gel brilliantly.

Performances are good, however, not my cup of tea. Watch this one if you’re a Daniel Day-Lewis fan.

Short Review of “The Post”

The movie, notwithstanding the backdrop, goes in the same tone as to how Spotlight went, until the buildup starts focussing on Meryl Streep’s character. Of course, she’s brilliant (as always), but what a wonderfully written character hers is. This movie, among many other things, is about Meryl being the ONLY woman frame by frame. Rising from being not able to matter to ensuring she tells them all, she means business. A scene where she walks out of the Courthouse while a sea of women watches her admiringly (without uttering even a single word) is a victory. Well played, Spielberg. You are truly a genius.

Of course, the movie is about a Newspaper standing firm on its resolve to question the government and as one of the judges puts it, ‘The Free Press was to serve the governed not the governor’.

It is a movie to watch. Arguably the best from the list for me.

Short Review of “The Shape of Water”

So, I did love the performance and the music. However, the very predictable plotline just doesn’t make it Oscar-worthy for me.

The story hardly offers anything new and I’m yet to understand all the hype around this movie. But, am I the only one?

A decent one-time watch.

Short Review of “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri”

A mothers cry to find justice for her murdered daughter finds a place in the 3 Billboards outside Ebbing. The hoardings ask and hold the authorities responsible for no action taken regarding the murder.

A bad-ass performance by Frances McDormand just keeps your tempo up, while everything else will take you to an emotional high, and hit you hard.

Another worthy contender for the Oscars. The tight-knit plot even with a fleet of characters, this one is an amazing watch.

Don’t miss out on Watching this. I have a feeling that McDormand might win for her performance.


Okay, now that you’ve read the short reviews of Oscar Nominated Movies of 2018, what are your picks?

Here’s my order of preference:

  1. The Post
  2. Three Billboards outside Ebbing, Missouri
  3. Call Me by Your Name
  4. Get Out
  5. Lady bird
  6. Dunkirk
  7. Phantom Thread
  8. The Shape Of Water

I won’t mind if any of the top 3 get the Oscars for the ‘Best Picture’.

Mukkabaaz Review: Punches you in all the right places

In a scene typical of exasperated anger, the Mukkebaaz, holds his boss against the wall, uttering a dialogue while still crushing his own teeth, fist pointed at him as if he’s about to bury him in that same wall, shouting: ‘Jaante ho na hum kaun hain? Uttar Prades ke Mike Tyson‘. 

The plot of the movie is about Shravan, played amazingly well by Vineet Kumar Singh, trying to prove this to his parents, his coaches, the administration, his lady love, and anyone and everyone about his passion. In a scene where he confronts his father about his ‘Passion’ is reminiscent and relatable to the frustration that kids have with their own parents when trying to follow what they believe in.

Mukkabaaz is a beautifully stitched poetry of the hinterland’s caste/religious infested clenched fist from which no one can get out. The storyline captures it all in not-so-subtle hints. Be it Caste based discrimination, dowry, patriarchy and how infested all of it is, in the ‘administration’. It’s like a slap on your face, scene by scene, as you dive into the plot. 

But, don’t mistake this to be another ‘preachy’ indulgence of a movie, laced with typical Anurag Kashyap style humor and tight knit plot, this is an entertaining watch. 

Ravi Kishan shines for me in his limited role like you won’t believe! He’s held the character together with surprising sophistication that it deserved. Of course, Jimmey Shergill’s character is clearly the best written of the lot. An ultimate villian and man, that guy is evil in the movie. 

Vijender Singh’s first big break and he’s given his all. Not a frame goes amiss when you’ll find this guy not being at his best. One would expect him to ace it with the ‘boxing’ but where he’s better is his scenes with the leading lady, Zoya Hussain (who plays Sunaina Mishra). These two are testimony to the fact that you don’t need dialogues to make a love story work. Coz, boy, they nailed it. The girl does a good job of playing a mute who isn’t afraid and passionate like the guy she loves.  

If you’ve seen enough of Anurag Kashyap’s work, you’ll realize most of his movies work better because of the small role playing characters. The friend of the lead, the father, sister, wive(s), and what you’d refer to as the ‘supporting characters’ to the supporting cast. That’s the magic of a Kashyap film. To use these characters to bind together the fun part of his movies in such a way that the audience will remember all of them after leaving the theatre. He perfected this in Gangs of Wasseypur and here he’s used the same. 

One can also sense a lot of his personal angst coming out in the storyline through the different fribge narratives that he’s tried to unbox. Of all the things, he’s given meaning to a different ‘Bharat Maata ki jay’ chant. 

The music flows through the spectrum of pumped up rap, to folk and even poetically inclined. 

I found the cinematography quite different from the usual Kashyap offering by not being too dark and isntead full of colors. Is that a result of an Anand L Rai collaboration? Nevertheless, it still looks good. 

It’s definitely important to relate to the hindi hinterland’s nuances and lifestyle to connect more. Although I won’t make that as a prerequisite to watch this, but the length of the movie won’t affect you if you connect closely. 

I’ve loved the film and wouldn’t mind watching this again. It definitely climbs up the charts of one of the best movies of recent years. Go catch this in the theatres. 

Hum derahe Hain isko 4.5 Sitara rating. ‘Bhaarat maata ki jay’ kahiye aur theatre me dekh aiye. 

A few beparwah Thoughts

Looking up, while a song plays, the zig-zags of the birds make tiny shadows on the blue afternoon sky. I had never seen those shadows, before. Probably did, but never thought of it, unlike today. Maybe it’s this song. 

Paper planes we drifted off in an era gone by. Only this time they continued the spiral for a wee bit longer, as these birds fly themselves. The open door gave me a big window to view their flight.


“Beparwah.. rang ka jaaya..

Chitt laage ne.. main uktaaya..

Haal bayaan ho na haal bayaan..

Hona fakat hai fanaa..”

 While the song continued to play on. I put on a big smile. Involuntary. The song and the birds. The directionless joy complementing the lyrics. Describing the essence of exactly that very moment.

“Ranj ke sadqe ho gayi jaan

Dhadkan jaise dhuaan…

Naa.. labeya kuch

Na hal paaya..

Naaaa hai pata.. manzar na disha… “

Few things cannot be put in words. Not only emotions but viewpoints like these. While I reminisce the afternoons where I had nothing to do. The winter afternoons. Soaking in the sun. Waiting for the clock to strike a certain time to run past the gates to play. The anticipation of doing something. Waiting for the green light.

Today, there isn’t any. Just stares. Stares out of this door, into the abyss formed in my imaginary viewing pod.

“Pyaar hai dheh sa gaya..

Hai kadar kahan..

Mann hai yaadon a ek majmaa”

Retrieving the good memories and keeping the rest closed somewhere. The assembly of thoughts are being selective for their own selfish reasons. Apt. Nothing wrong in that.

“Na hai aata

Manzar na dishaa

Khaak hua hai kadar kahan”


The birds drift out of the view. Still in the sky, just out of my view. Out in someone else’s reveries. I continue to watch out for them, while the Blue sky remains the blank canvas of thoughts. Waiting!

Movie Review: Michael Madana Kama Rajan

Just watched Kamal Haasan’s Michael Madana Kama Rajan. Like, is there anyone who can can play multiple characters with such an ease? Even though I don’t understand the language, the tonal shifts in dialects with each of the characters are so perfect.

The basic plot of the movie is about 4 Quadruplets separated at birth. All played by Kamal (like, why not :P)

Even though this is a ‘comedy of errors’, every scenario is so thought of, that finding big loopholes is a rarity. Kudos to the writing (co-written by Kamal Haasan himself) and of course, the screenplay. The scenes are stitched together seamlessly and the comedy is just as far away as the next scene.

Like there’s this scene where 2 of the 4 Quadruplets meet and they’re standing near a mirror. Another character remarks ‘I can see 4 of you, now.’ Just one of the ways to throw in the fact that there are 4 characters with the same face. I mean, subtle, huh!

Illaiyaraja’s music is soothingly perfect along with the storyline where distinctive personalities get songs based on how their story develops. The picturization is
so-early-90s but it is fun to see Kamal Hassan dancing around.

Also, the title song is super catchy. It has subtitles and describes the entire backstory before the movie starts off.


It’s a good comedy to watch. Lots of caricatures in the storyline but each fit into the plot and contributes to taking it forward. My favorite being Kamaraj’s Grandmother-in-law. She is funny and memorable long after you finish watching the movie.

Also, few of the scenes are definitely progressive and make light of things that could easily become ‘offensive’ in today’s India.

‘Michael Madana Kama Rajan’ a good movie to watch and is available on Amazon Prime along with Subtitles. Go watch it.

Arjun Reddy Review: Intense, dark and a good watch!

Only a handful of movies stay for more than a day in the back of your head where characters continue to remain alive . The kind of effect synonymous with finishing the final page of a good book. I don’t usually write about non-Hindi/English movies, but this movie is probably going to be an exception. Or perhaps a start to writing regularly about subtitled movies.

I’ve usually avoided watching Telugu movies unless highly recommended (or stars Prabhas or Mahesh Babu). The stuff dished out from the state’s industry has remained mostly the same over years, refusing to come out of the action-packed-one-man-army-masala movie genre. Barring Baahubali, there’s been hardly anything good and different.


This movie, Arjun Reddy, has certainly changed my opinion.

The story is about, as the name clearly suggests, Arjun Reddy. Arjun is a 4th-year medical student who is a topper, college bully who is good at sports but has anger management issues. He’s about to drop out of college because this dude, of course, won’t apologize to his dean for getting his anger out on someone. But hey, a girl enters. Literally, as he’s about to submit the NOC of his departure. 

Their relationship starts off with him practically bullying her to be with him but she falls for him eventually. Because Movies! The plot is more about him coping with the breakup (Oh yes!) with moments of flashback on the ‘why’ of it.

The brilliance of the movie is hardly in the contents of the story but in the character universe built around Arjun Reddy. With a screen time close to 3 hours, each character grows as the story develops, while getting ample screen time. Nothing seems rushed to sprint towards the ending but is trying to pull the audience into its depth. The background score and cinematography match up perfectly to the pace.

Characters like Arjun’s friend, Shiva, played by Rahul Ramakrishna, are more than just sidekicks typical of Telugu cinema (or even Tamil). Bereft of even the male-bonding drama, which the usual stories seem to progress when trying to go in a different direction. Not that there aren’t any caricatures, but they are overpowered by well written roles. Must commend, the writer-director Sandeep Reddy Vanga for this.

The female lead, Preethi Shetty, played by Shalini Pandey is earnest and displays the emotional state of a scared, in-love and suffering, young lady as her character transitions through the journey.

The film, of course, hinges on Vijay Devarakonda who plays the lead and man! This dude is good. One can say the role perfectly fits him and that the writing was done keeping just this guy in mind. Not that he doesn’t display the antics of a ‘hero’ but this role demanded the tantrum-filled alcoholic to do just that. I’m actually looking forward to watching more of this guy based on this.

Arjun Reddy is not only an enjoyable watch but is able to pull you in a world created by the Director. The Background music and the songs (No song-and-dance) adds to the intensity. It is one of the good movies I’ve watched this year and you should too.

It is available on Amazon Prime (with English subtitles) if you’re interested to watch.

Lucknow Central Review: An underplayed prison drama that works

What can you expect from a prison-break drama? I mean what ‘unique story’ can you expect from one? Having watched quite a few over the years, I wasn’t looking forward to ‘Woah! That’s new’.

I wasn’t entirely wrong. The story is most definitely ‘an-innocent-jailed-trying-to-escape’ with a Hindi heartland story and a musical twist to keep you interested. But there is more to the Lucknow Central apart from the music and the obvious escape strategies. The underplaying of every character by all the actor is something unique about this movie. Not one or two, but almost the entire ensemble has made sure to keep themselves in check to not go overboard to the point that the first half buildup appears a tad bit slow apart from a few high moments.

Farhan Akhtar takes time to grow into the UP Bhaiya role he plays in the movie but as you progress with the plot, you realize maybe they wanted to play a low-key and grounded role, instead of an over-the-top-emotionally-draining role. The character is part-fun part-helpless, whose dreams are what every small town guy can relate to. Making it big. However, he still doesn’t outshine the slew of amazingly written characters of Ronit Roy, playing the jailor, and other inmates who plan to escape with him. This includes, Gippi Grewal, Deepak Dobriyal, Rajesh Sharma and InaamulHaq. Each of them putting their best foot forward in aiding the central character of Kishan, played by Farhan, by making a mark of their own. Credit definitely goes to the writing for well-written characters.

It was also good to see no romantic involvement between Kishan (Farhan’s Character) and Diana Penty who plays the role of Gayatri Kashyap, helping in prisoner reformation. Considering how Bollywood movie stories are written, this is a good change.

One scene where he walks next to the projector where they’re playing Amitabh’s Vijay Deenanath Chauhan is the right amount of epic. Same goes with many of the prison-drama scenes, the ragging, the gang-fights and the fun. Each of them characteristically giving you an insight into what goes on behind the jails.

Music isn’t overpowering the narrative and that in a way is a good thing. So are the dialogues.

Lucknow Central has a slow 1st half start and picks up towards the second half as the screenplay goes. However, the beauty of the movie is in the underplayed performances by its ensemble and some action-packed second half and a good climax.

Lucknow Central is a decent watch in the theatre for how it deals with a concept that isn’t alien to audiences and for its mature handling of the subject.

I’m going with a 3/5 for Farhan Akhtar starrer, Lucknow Central.

Baby Driver Review: The coolest film of the year!

Once you’ve watched Baby Driver, your definition of what you consider cool gets an upgrade. After all, it IS one of the coolest movies you’ll watch this year. I’m pretty sure, you haven’t watched it yet. But take my word for it: Watch it!

It’s unlike any other movie you’ll invest your time (and money) in. From an expression of awe, your jaw drops by a few minuscule inches with every scene. You laugh from one scene to another without having finished your first laugh. The music booms past your ear along with the car chase that essentially is core to the plot of the movie.

The story is about a young car driver, to put it humbly, working for a heist planner (Kevin Spacey) who creates plans and leave it to expert individuals who are good at doing this type of work. While our driver, Baby (yes, that’s his name), who’s a devil behind the wheels helps them escape. You should also hear the remix/mash-up tape of ‘devil-behind-the-wheel’ version that the baby driver creates.

Each scene is iconic in its own way. I’m not going to divulge any other details about the plot. The plot is essentially very basic and mostly momentum driven. It is the treatment that is wonderful. The amalgam of music with cars and the background story is a beautiful symphony being played on-screen.

It is one of those movies which you can shout ‘once-more’ at the end of it. Yes, it was that awesome. It is, actually.

Ansel Elgort is perfect as the baby driver with a hearing issue. Seasoned actors like Kevin Spacey, John Hamm and Jamie Fox are at their usual best.

Apart from the adrenaline rush of the action involved, which keeps you hooked onto your seat, the romance between Baby driver (Ansel) and Deborah (Lily James) give you the feels. Not overpowering and just the right amount. The dream sequences are classy.

There’s nothing that I can point in the movie which isn’t good. Sure, if this isn’t your type of movie then you might not find it to be as awesome as I did, but it is worth giving a shot. Edgar Wright, who has directed Scott vs pilgrims, and co-wrote Ant-Man, and screenplay for Scorcese’s Tintin is spot on here.

I’m going with a 4.5/5 for Baby Driver. Watch it! The devil behind the wheel will take you on a ride.

JHMS Review: When Harry and Sejal don’t meet a good story

I’ve always left the theatre a little confused after watching an Imtiaz Ali movie; always questioned whether I’ve liked it or not. There’d be something really good and something that just doesn’t make sense. But for the first time, I’m certain of how Harry met Sejal is. It is a badly conceived movie.

How I wished for a sad ending to make little sense of the story. But hey, the director assumes we all want a happy ending, right?

How I wanted a wee bit extra sadness, a little more pain to allow myself to feel as to why is Harry like this? For the puzzle to fit, on why Harry had to meet a Sejal, just doesn’t get answered! But that’s not the only problem for this movie. There’s just lack of depth in the story. Except in two characters’ chemistry. The only saving grace.

But how far do you think that can steer a story which is going nowhere but to the usual clichéd ending of most of Imtiaz’ movies. Sure, there’s a good dose of realism and few scenes just hit you real hard without being grand. The brooding Shahrukh is unmatchable and so is the ‘layak’ Anushka, both of them capture the nuance of their characters perfectly. But. Yes, and a big B.U.T. There’s just nothing else there in the movie! A couple of scenes, once-in-a-while, is all that’s good about the movie.

Being a movie where the tour guide is the main protagonist and the entire movie is shot in Europe, there’s hardly much of Europe that the lens captures. Maybe taking a leaf out of Zoya Akhtar’ ZNMD would have helped? But hey, Imtiaz wants to stick to his own formula of loving someone who is about to get married! How many more times should we be watching that same damn thing?

Songs get added to the movie out of no reason. There’s an entire addition to Harry’s colleague’ wedding, which is just not required. The only possible explanation for that is to make Shahrukh wear a turban and touch upon his ‘Punjabi roots’. A flashback on the same which doesn’t pan out into anything substantial again adds to the irrelevancy.

The story follows a boring direction which Imtiyaz has taken us on numerous occasions.

Shahrukh Khan embraces Harry and so does Anushka Sharma in being the Gujju-accented girl out to search for her ring. As stupid as the idea of her finding it across countries is how she finally ends up getting it back!

The script is stupid and if it weren’t for the two stars in the movie, would appear like written in a hurry. And it’s only because of them, I’m giving a 2 star to this film. Watch it only if you’re a fan or a weekend with nothing else to do.

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