Posts Tagged 'Rani Mukherjee'

No One Killed Jessica – Movie Review

(Honestly, it’s more of a commentary on movie and the real events as they took place. Watching this movie was a personal experience that I refused to dissociate with real-life events. You can choose to skip the blue, italicized parts in paragraphs – they are mostly comments about real-life events. Also, all names except Jessica and Sabrina, were changed in the movie, yet I have stuck to real-life names. Also, I chose not to mention Amit Trivedi’s music which made more sense to me when it blended with movie. )

The title ‘No One Killed Jessica’ (NOKJ) is taken from the screaming mocking newspaper headlines when Manu Sharma, the accused in Jessica Lal murder case was acquitted by the court. That judgement, in a case that was expected to be an open-and-shut considering the number of witnesses that were present when the accused Manu Sharma shot Jessica, awakened a nation from slumber of inaction.

1999, the year when this incident occurred, was an eventful year. Jessica was killed in April, Kargil war dominated the news next three months and in December, flight IC184 was hijacked where a passenger Rupin Katyal, returning from his honeymoon, was cruelly murdered by the hijackers. There was lot for nation to chew on.

1999 was also the year I decided to stay in Delhi permanently, choosing over an option of studying abroad. I grew up with this Jessica story. The movie made me relive all of it, from when it started.

To its credit, it is true to facts, which is more than what can be said of best of true-story-turned-movies (such as ‘A Beautiful Mind’, ‘Papillion’, ‘Midnight Express’.). Though, while we are at it, I must point out NOKJ does *choose* to omit some facts such as dubious role of restaurant-owner Bina Ramani. But that is director,  Raj Kumar Gupta’s prerogative and I think he has largely made a good choice about which events to focus on.  I’ll come to that later.

Jessica Lal, an upcoming model was a celebrity bartender who had decided to help out her friend Malini Ramani’s mother at her restaurant ‘Tamarind Court’. (Since the restaurant , whose real name along with its owner is not mentioned in the movie, didn’t have liquor license yet in real life, they called it a private party. Hiding this fact, rather than help law to apprehend the killer would be initially more important to the restaurant owner Bina Ramani.) She was killed amongst her friends.

NOKJ begins with how Jessica’s sister Sabrina is woken up that fateful night and how she would discover that finding justice that was rightfully hers wasn’t easy in this country plagued with corruption.

Continue reading ‘No One Killed Jessica – Movie Review’

Movie Review: Thoda Pyaar, Thoda Magic

Nothing better to watch, I went to watch Thoda Pyar, Thoda Magic (TPTM). The show was houseful, and so were all the other shows for this movie. I resigned myself to watch the movie from front lines. It was foolish. 🙂 No, not watching from front seats, you get used to it after 15-20 minutes. But movie was not worth it.

The concept is entirely picked from Oscar award winning Mary Poppins, it is Indianised on the lines of Mr. India (as director Kunal Kohli proclaimed in an interview). The only common thing it has with Mr. India is this is a movie for kids with a “sensous” underwater dance by adults, Ameesha and Saif. This movie can never be Mr. India as latter had an iconic villain, a message and awesome imagination and cinematography. Moreover, adults loved Mr. India, most adults won’t like TPTM.

Just as in Mary Poppins, in TPTM, God sends an angel on earth to unite the family of Saif and four kids. There goes the story in one line.

Casting and characterization are biggest flaws of this movie.

Julie Andrews as angel in Mary Poppins

Rani Mukherjee as angel in Thoda Pyar Thoda Magic

Compare petite Julie Andrews of Mary Poppins’s angel with overweight and visibly aged Rani Mukherjee. Plus angel does not look refined, angel speaks mixture of Punjabi and Hindi! After reading, watching so many fairy tales, this fairy was a one big let down. I almost coughed at the sight of BIG Rani cycling on a rainbow (read kiddie’s cycle) with her legs in air! Even though Manish Malhotra has designed her Nanny’s dress that she wore throughout the movie to make her an iconic character, it was hard to remember she is an angel. She looks silly at times. Now before you “Black” me, I have not said a single bad word about Rani’s acting prowess.

Ameesha Patel, as Saif‘s girlfriend is projected as pure bimbette (I hate this word though), dressed in tight, short dresses. She even rambles about bags and pink/blue interior designs. This was another silly, immature characterization on director’s part. I also cringed every time they called a Rishi Kapoor (dressed in all-white) “Bhagwaan”. And you know what, angels were also bitching in heaven. 😛

Mary Poppins was a musical that made Walt Disney pictures. TPTM has a song that traces Indian history while angel teaches kids about history of Indian struggle. Another song that you must have a lot about being for adults. But that song too had chaotic and confusing moments. I was wondering why would an angel resort to childish, destructive route? I was just confused what director was thinking, not that I care.

My friend who accompanied me to movie predicted that there would be cartoons, well, there were. Not as good as those in Hum Tum. I have like Kunal Kohli’s earlier work like Hum Tum (so- so) and Fanaa, but now I think he is one of overrated directors.

For lack of anything better than yawning, I ogled at Saif’s wardobe. He looked dashing in few scenes. To clarify, I am not a big Saif fan, but I recognize that he is a good actor, gets into the skin of the character.

I don’t know if kids liked it. But a good kid movie can entertain adults too. Harry Potter is watched and read enthusiastically by adults too. There is Baby’s Day Out, Ice Age, Simpsons, Spiderman, Superman and thousands more. If we adults stop enjoying kid movies, I think its time Film Censor board rolled out a “K” certificate, meaning “for kids only”.

Rating: 2/5


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