Let's Talk Films!

Author Archive

If you like Pussy Cat Dolls videos, you’ll like this one 😉

OR maybe not! See there’s a reason why a video is not a movie, right?

Burlesque brings together on the big screen, two singing divas Christina Aguilera and Cher who dazzle when in their element in the movie. In this big budget musical extravaganza, Aguilera plays Ali who travels from small town Iowa to LA in search of big time stardom. She lands herself a job as a waitress in a club at Sunset Strip called Burlesque. Cher plays the club’s owner Tess who is in danger of losing the club due to mounting money problems. Enamoured by the performances that happen at the club everynight, Ali dreams to be on that stage and show the world what she’s made of. When Ali gets an unexpected chance to show her singing and dancing talent, she gets her big break to be featured in the show. Alongside a tentative romance also brews between Jack (Cam Gigandet) the club’s handsome bartender and aspiring composer.

Well that is pretty much the story; I’m going to save you the unnecessary underplots that run in the movie. The screenplay is a total cliché and predictable with absolute accuracy. But it’s a fun, well-packaged and an entertaining cliché.

Don’t go looking for an intense narrative, a never-seen-before-never-heard-before story, you will be disappointed. However, the dances and the singing do somewhere make up for that lack. They are red and gold and glamorous and bold. They left ME, a girl, wanting more. They are sexy but not raunchy, and pulled off by all the dancers with élan. The outfits are racy and bling. The songs are situational and they’ll make you feel all that they are meant to make you feel. ‘Bound to you’ is pure sensual, ‘Express’ more fiery. “Welcome to Burlesque” the perfect 1st track and “Show me how you Burlesque” the grand finale in gold and yellow lights.

The story had potential; just there was something off with the way it was delivered. And by that I DO NOT mean the dances and the songs. They were probably the only thing that fit. The acting, the timing, the chemistry between the characters fell short of convincing and with such a stellar ­cast, there really shouldn’t be an excuse.

Watch Burlesque for the sheer thrill of watching those dance routines. They are in-sync and performed by the dancers like they mean it. The movie is definitely not the best a musical can be, far from it infact, but for the extravaganza that the team has tried to bring together, it’s worth a watch.

Advertisements

I decided to be a little girl again as I entered to watch a fairy tale I know only too well and I came out pleasantly surprised with an i-believe-in-miracles smile pasted on my lips.

Tangled; a Walt Disney Pictures productions, is the story of our beloved Rapunzel but with a few changes here and there. So there’s a charming bandit Flynn Rider (voice of Zachary Levi) instead of the prince who rescued her, there’s a caring chameleon (Pascal) for her friend and a super-cop stallion (Maximus) who has quite a role to play in the climax and is quite the show stealer.

Rapunzel (voice of Mandy Moore) is dainty and beautiful, petite but powerful with 70ft of magical hair that glows. Locked up in a mighty tower for 18 years, her wish for her birthday is to see the golden lights that go up in sky every year (surprisingly) only on her birthday. When Flynn Rider stumbles into the tower from the chase set out to arrest him, Rapunzel strikes a deal with him and off they go on a racy escapade, the 3D adding to the thrill.

The animation highlighted every nuance…just how every strand of Rapunzel’s hair glowed golden. There were some breath-taking scenes that I’m fighting against my will not to divulge because words really wouldn’t suffice. You have to be sitting there wearing those big 3D glasses, getting amused with what you see on the screen, eyes opening wide, jaws dropping just a little, putting your hand out to touch the lantern. Oops, I think I said too much!

We all know the thing about fairy-tales, we’ve heard them, we love them and someone sitting beside you can maybe even predict what’s going to happen next…but there’s just something so pretty and wooly and satisfying about watching a fairy-tale come alive on the big screen, it heightens the experience of being transported back to childhood.

It’s not an overwhelming, message giving animated movie. It’s just a ‘princess’ story wrapped in pink and blue thoughts, and very very long gloden hair, of course. Enjoy the adventure and jig with the songs. I promise you’ll come out feeling good.

Sex and the City (2008)

145 min – Comedy | Drama | Romance –  6 June 2008 (India)

Director:

Michael Patrick King

Writers:

Michael Patrick King, Candace Bushnell (book)

Stars:

Sarah Jessica Parker, Kim Cattrall and Cynthia Nixon

Turns out we are not the only movie buffs out there. Today we are featuring a review by Sanhita Sinha Chowdhury who loves to watch and write about chick flicks. She is our guest-blogger for today. hope you enjoy her post!

Plot Synopsis

“Year after year, 20-something women come to New York City in search of the two L’s: Labels and love.” That is the opening line of Sex and the City (2008), a movie which earned a record-breaking $55.7 million on its opening weekend. This one liner perfectly sums up the pre occupations of Carrie Bradshaw (Sarah Jessica Parker) and her girlfriends Charlotte York (Kristen Davis), Miranda Hobbes (Cynthia Nixon), and Samantha Jones (Kim Cattrall). While Carrie is forty and single and on the lookout for big love, Charlotte’s search for “The Perfect Love” ended when she tied the knot with her Jewish husband. Miranda on the contrary is a disciple of tough love and juggles her job, kid and husband. Samantha’s love is sex, lots of sex.

The movie revolves around Carrie and her “man friend” of 10 years who arbitrarily decide to tie the knot after moving in together. Carrie goes a little over board with the wedding preparations and this scares off Mr. Big, who after two failed marriages was apprehensive about the wedding from the very beginning. To add to his fears, Miranda makes a comment about how marriage ruins everything, in distress, when her unfaithful husband Steve turns up to apologize on the eve of the wedding. A perturbed Mr. Big jilts Carrie at the altar, leaving her humiliated and depressed. Carrie turns to her girlfriends who are her salvation. The four journey to Mexico and live in the hotel where Carrie was supposed to come for her honeymoon. Thus begins the Healing process which continues even as the four get back to their lives. Carries hires an assistant who also plays a crucial role in helping her to get back on her feet. A year, a confession and lots of introspection later, Mr. Big and Carrie meet at the house they had moved into and had subsequently moved out off and they realize each other’s value and decide to get married, this time, they keep things minimalistic.

Analysis

Indian women today definitely do lust for the two L’s: Love and Labels. However not everyone is probably familiar with all the big brand names referred to in the movie and most cannot afford them. The four dimensions from which this movie has explored love are quite accurate and relevant. With live in relations becoming increasingly popular with young men and women, the idea of a forty year old woman living in with her boyfriend of ten years should be quite perceivable to women.

Once the wedding arrangements kick off, women might fail to identify with the movie. The way most Indians prepare for weddings is starkly different. However women would again be able to identify with the movie once Carrie gets jilted (there was a similar scene in Bachna Ae Haseeno).  The numbness, hurt and the sadness felt on account of betrayal are universal emotions.

Carrie’s assistant Louise would be a character that women in India would identify with more easily. She is an ordinary girl who aspires to look a part of the “elite” society flaunting designer bags. Unable to afford one, she rents them. When Carrie gifts her, her own new Louis Vuitton on Christmas she squeals with joy.

Though the movie has a lot to do with fashion and places most Indian women might not have been to, or the kind of money they might not have been exposed to, but the dilemmas the protagonists face, the female bonding they share, their search for true love, going out for girly brunches, undertaking retail therapy, all these are experiences which most Indian women would be able to identify with.

I’m a huge fan of chick flicks.. Most importantly, chick flicks in which the female lead is shown with a strong career focus, as opposed to a useless bimbo with no ambitions or career aspirations. I mean that just heightens the chick-flick watching experience for me. If I see a chick flick with a career-less bimbo in it, I simply can’t relate to it, you know what I mean? Who has the TIME to go out and have an affair! So here’s my list of fav chick flicks that I absolutely love and can watch a million times! Do share your list in the comments section 😀

Movie: The Princess Diaries

Director: Garry Marshall

Year: 2001

Cast: Julie Andrews, Anne Hathaway and Hector Elizondo

Based on the novel by Meg Cabot, “The Princess Diaries” isn’t exactly a profound movie nor did it intend to be. It is quite predictable. The movie has few too many scenes of Mia being clumsy. However, it is a thoughtfully crafted film that is full of messages about family, friends, and loyalty. Some are in subtle undertones of the movie and others just obvious. Mia’s journey from being a plain-Jane to being the princess of Genovia, may not be every girl’s life story but Anne Hathaway and Julie Andrews (grandmother) make it all so believable owing to their excellence in their profession. The characters almost seem carved out having kept them in mind.

The Movie: The Devil Wears Prada

Director: David Frankel

Year: 2006

Cast: Meryl Streep, Anne Hathaway, Emily Blunt

Meryl Streep plays Miranda Priestley, editor in chief of Runway magazine.  Her character is based on Anna Wintour, editor in chief of Vogue magazine.  The story is from the point of view of Miranda’s junior personal assistant Andrea “Andy” Sachs (Anne Hathaway) whose ambitions land her the apparently glamorous job, only to realise later how swiftly it took over her life. The movie has shown Andy’s personality and image transformation, so it fits her job profile. Anne Hathaway has pulled off the ‘clumsy at first, confident later’ girl character with élan.

The entire look of the movie is very suave and slick and there’s powerful display of hi-fashion and glamour, relationships and dilemmas. The character of ‘Andy’ is convincing and at most levels, easy to connect with.

Movie: Eat Pray Love

Director: Ryan Murphy

Year: 2010

Cast: Julia Roberts, James France, Richard Jenkins

The adapted film compares with best-selling autobiographical work that it is based on by means of an aesthetic narrative, covering three locations, three different cultures and her explorations through her entire journey. The movie is as well made as it could’ve been with the best angles of the three exotic places captured in frame, showcase of a kaleidoscope of cultures, their cuisines and people.

After reading Elizabeth Gilbert’s bestseller in paperback, I almost couldn’t wait to watch the movie and hoped that the film version—full of lush shooting and delicious international cuisine—would do justice to the book that had made me fall in love with each of its pages. The movie conjures up the same emotions and aspirations the book does, only the elation and the ‘Good’ feeling eludes faster and doesn’t stay as long.

Julia Roberts plays Elizabeth Gilbert effortlessly and that according to me was the strength of the movie.

Image courtesy: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Princess_Diaries_2:_Royal_Engagement

http://www.shoeshoeonline.com/the-devil-wears-prada-shoes

http://www.yogadork.com/news/yd-eat-pray-love-5-point-review/

Who wouldn’t want to see their favourite stories and their favourite characters come to life? We all would. We all do! That’s one reason why we eagerly wait for movie adaptations of good, successful books. To feel once again what we felt when we read the book, or maybe feel even better, and to be able to relive and re-love the book by means of a more tangible medium.

From just a written mode to an audio-visual mode, we expect a miracle to unfold before us on the big screen. And maybe the expectations are justified given the cinematic advancements in technology, expertise, skills and ideas. It is seldom though that the movie lives up to the book, or should I say, lives up to our visual interpretation of the book.

“When you read a book, you make your own movie and that is why movies do not live upto the books” said New Yorker Sorab Wadia who staged the one-man presentation of ‘The Kite Runner’ at the Literature live 2010 at Mumbai. I could see everyone’s head slowly nodding and their smiles getting wider and it became evident that what he’d said resounded with everyone’s sensibilities. I reflected upon his words and realised they were so simple and so true; when we read a book, we visualise the story and all its details which includes the characters, the locations, the sounds, just about every little intricacy our minds can conceive. It is natural then that we would like our movie over the movie. There is a lot that goes into translation of books to movies. The director has to be able to present to the viewers’ something that comes close to the movie they created in their minds.

So next time you go in to watch a movie adaption of a book you loved. Expect brilliance but know that there is no tool more brilliant in imagination that your mind.

 


The numbers game

  • 2,188 hits

I want email subscriptions!

Feeding off our frenzy..

When you were away…

Top Rated

%d bloggers like this: