‘Tasveer – 8 X 10′ – Movie Review

It was a free lunch and I happily grabbed it, since wifey was out and Pihu (my , I am 3, going on 4, kid) was at Nana’s place. I am a big fan of Nagesh and would love to pay for my lunch anyday for Iqbaal, Dor, HB so the decision was made so much easier.

The movie is mostly shot in Canada and that’s refreshing. Watching the greens, sparkling water bays, upmarket houses and what not. ‘Precept’ which produced the movie along with T-Series is not a great name to reckon but they did spend some money by shooting in Canada.

The plot is around Akki who can look beyond a photograph and can go back in time when the pic was shot. He is usually seen going back by a minute since by then he gets unconscious and is usually taken to a hospital after such a act. The film moves very well in the first half, tight editing, no-fuss dialogues, good locations, clean camera work and no distraction (Sorry, Akki doesn’t bare. Ayesha looks beautiful and thats about it).

So far a good movie but come 2nd half and it falls apart. Let me give you the plot.

Akki’s dad is murdered (a oil baron) and he makes his wife as the sole winner of the fortune. He has some friends and they were all there on the boat from where he fell and everyone thought that it was a case of accident. Come Javed Jaffery (He is Super, he acts as a HYDi, super) , a dismissed cop who claims that the dad was murdered and that starts Akki’s journeys into past life.

Actually before the accident happened, a group photo was clicked by Sharmila (Akki’s mom) and with that photograph he now goes behind the scene (1 minute past) and tries to figure out. I wont give you the complete story but once the truth is out, the film still goes for another 20 minutes. It reminded me the grueling last sequences of movies like Dar (KKKK….) and Bhoot where director/script-writer just got carried away.

No great music to write about. Javed shines brilliantly. Ayesha does well and Akki was pretty good.

My high point in the whole movie was to find old TV stalwarts on big screen after a long time viz. Benjamin Gilani, Anant Mahadevan and Girish Karnad.

Not recommended.

“The Mickey Mouse Show” in Delhi, India – Quick Review

My little one went to this show with her mom the other day which was very well marketed and publicized over TV Channels.

I thought I would write a quick review, so here it is, based on my interaction with my little one’s mother.

The show had a very simple set, to the extent of being not too impressive at least in the beginning. It was in Siri Fort Auditorium which can house at least 600 people and it was a full house as per the ticket sales. The show started almost half an hour late and interestingly the house was not more than a third full of its capacity. But during the show, people started trickling in and it was a full house by the end.

The audience was mainly the young moms with the small kid, often with a maid. The show started with two anchors, who were very impressive. After the initial ice-breaking and warm-up they introduced Mickey Mouse. That was high point of the show when Mickey came on stage, super production value. They did a 30 minute performance with Mickey hosting a TV Show (Jay Leno sorts) calling Goofy, Minnie, Donald and Pluto. They had lot of fun with each other and Kids loved it. From the TV Show the crew moved to Bolywood and they danced to Bolywood numbers like Nagada-Nagada, Jhoom Barabar Jhomm etc. While this change was happening, they switched to Indian dresses, Lehnga n all. There was this dance troupe as well. As the part of Bolywood Premiere , they also introduced Romeo and his lady love Laila. As expected kids got more interested in Romeo than the Mickey. All in all Kids had fun especially during the end when the anchors dropped their hair among Kids.

All this lasted 30 minutes. The ticket prices were Rs 500, Rs 1000 and Rs 1500 and one can book tickets at http://www.bookmyshow.com/.

Now the big question, do we recommend. Well, its not a value-for-money for Rs 1000. Probably a NSD powered Children’s festival like Jashn-e-Bachpan at Rs 40 a show is much more killer but then this one is from Diseny. So dust your address book to see if you can find some Jugad. One of our friend’s found one and took us in for free, and for a free ride, its definitely more than worth it.

NSD Children Play Festival. ‘Deewar’ – Play Review

Just back from watching a play at LTG Auditorium. NSD is celebrating its golden jubilee and they are hosting a children play festival called JashneBachpan.

This is not really a review, its more of a small snippet :). I do used to write review for ‘Samachar Mail’ (A ‘Sunday Mail’ publication) about 14 odd years back.

“Deewar” is a short play, 1 hour one act, about two communities (Reds and Blues) which are separated by a wall and lot of mis-conceptions about each other. Over the course of play, some of the members of the community interact over-the-wall and seeing the limitation decide to break the wall. There are two Sutradhars (Bholi and Laali), one Watchman and one Neelu.

The high part of Play is its interaction with audience, kids in audience. They have been able to do it without making this whole thing too chaotic. Great. Also the performances are brilliant. I would think that Bholi needs some more sound lessons.

The play is directed by Vibha Chhibbar (remember Kamini jee of ‘Chak De India’, same girl) and she has done a very good job. Its by ‘Fun..toosh’ group of Mumbai. They are sort of cousins of ‘Samskara Rang Toli’ which is active in Delhi.

Pihu enjoyed it. At the end scene one of the Sutradhar invited 10 kids but they could not stop any one and there were at least 50 Kids on the stage ;). Great show.

Jashne Bachpan – National Theatre Festival for Children

National School of Drama (NSD) is celebrating their ‘Golden Jubilee’ and as part of celebration, they are organizing a festival for children. This is being managed by TIE (Theatre in Education).

As per their website, Jashn-e-Bachpan showcases the works of theatre groups working with and for children. These groups represent various regions and languages from across the country. As a special feature, this year we will also be inviting theatre groups from abroad to participate in the Festival.

Important Information
Venue – NSD Campus (Abhimanch, Sammukh etc), Sri Ram Centre, LTG etc.
Date – Oct 10th – Oct 20th
Ticket – Rs 20 for children and Rs 40 for Adults

Interactive Map

View Larger Map

There are two plays every day at 1730 and 1830 hrs. On weekend its at 1530 and 1830 hrs. Here’s the schedule. There are plays in various languages.

Click this photo to see a bigger version of it.

I am just back from there and they have put this structure (a Cycle oozing out of a back-seat of a car) on the gate so you can not take your car in. Parking is available in ‘Bhagwan Das Lane’ as in previous years. I saw ‘Rajesh Sharma’ at the gate, one of those regular actors 5 odd years back , my 2nd innings hang-around time 🙂

We bought tickets for the play on Sunday, its called “Deewar”.

‘A Wednesday’ – Movie Review

A low key movie which was released couple of weekends back have failed to evoke much excitement but somehow I was recommended this movie by a my half-brother. Also incidentally I wanted to watch this movie since it has Naseer and Anupam, one of the two all time great artistes. I was eye-ing the poster for a while.

I did get a chance to watch this on last weekend and what a delight it was. Its a tight, not so long, thriller which keeps you almost on the edge, has stellar performances from everyone, brilliant editing and camera work and most importantly a fine piece of overall cinema. A great story and screen play, a small dose of humor and a high-impact social message.

The story is of ‘A’ Wednesday when Anupam who is playing as the Police Commissioner of Mumbai receives a call from Naseer for releasing some of the terrorists. I wont give you the story so that I dont kill the fun. Anupam is ably supported by a team which is led by two Sub-Inspectors Arif and Jai. Neeraj Pandey as a director has done a great job and I am certain that big assignments must be on his way. Right from character establishment (esp of Jai and Arif) to continuity to timing, everything has been really spectacular.

Some things which one of my colleague mentioned and I agree with him is that we as a nation are still not doing a good job in terms of researching the topic and trying to make the movie more real. There was definitely one thing which could have been handled with more maturity. This was around finding a hacker who could geo-locate Naseer. There were other small things which probably could have been done better, like managing to get the convicts (I would argue that in the current system it would be next to impossible to arrange four high-profile convicts in one place in a matter of 2 hours, the paper work would probably eat half a day if not more). We do not seem to be doing research the way Hollywood does. May be as a nation we work more out of guts then a real planned data-driven decision. Anyway, dont read too much of this.

All in all, a must watch. If you can’t catch it on a theater then wait for the DVD and do watch it. If you watch it and have things to share, then please write a comment.