Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Rann - Music Review

Read more! Cast :: Amitabh Bachchan, Ritesh Deshmukh, Paresh Rawal, Mohnish Behl, Suchitra Krishnamurthy, Rajat Kapoor, Gul Panag, Neetu Chandra, Rajpal Yadav, Prakash Trivedi, Sudeep, Rahul Pendkalkar, Neena Kulkarni,Simone Singh, Iklaq Khan, Alok Nath

By now we are all well aware that Ram Gopal Verma’s movies don’t have songs just thrown in. His characters don’t break into a jig, nor are they singers. His movies have songs which are played in the background and suit the mood and setting of the scene. Obviously, such is the case for Rann, RGV’s brand new movie!

Besharam sung by Abhishek Naiwal who sings it like a war cry is a track which spits anger on the things happening around. It sounds more on the lines of Aarambh from the movie Gulaal.

Gali Gali Mein sung by a very effervescent JoJo is a funny yet very relevant track on the current state of our country. The music is ok, but gets too noisy at times.

The best track of the album comes in the form of Kaanch Ke Jaise sung by the ever dependable Sukhwinder Singh. It’s a track in which the protagonist laments rules. The lyrics are profound and metaphorical.

Kunal Ganjawala comes to rap on Mera Bharat Mahaan, which talks about all the ironical things happening in our country. It is ok in terms of lyrics, but the music sticks out like a sore thumb.

The title track Rann Hai is again a track which portrays anger through some wrong things happening around. Sanjeev Kohli sings it well, but the tone of the song is repetitive.

Remote Ko Baahar Phek is a fast-paced rap number sung by Jayesh Gandhi. It is more like a bunch of words have been thrown in without any rhyme with a few news channel headlines for good measure. It may work well in the movie, but as a stand-alone track it’s a naah!

Sikkon Ki Bhook The Vande Mataram Song starts off with some breaking news headlines from different news channels. Sung by Vardan Singh, this one too falls in the same genre as the previous tracks of this album.

Multiple music directors don’t do justice to this album, and the tracks have no appeal as a stand-alones. Most of them sound repetitive unlike Varma’s earlier movies which had some memorable soundtracks.

Download MP3 Songs
01 - Besharam@review-of-movies.blogspot.com
02 - Gali Gali Mein@review-of-movies.blogspot.com
03 - Kaanch Ke Jaise@review-of-movies.blogspot.com
04 - Mera Bharat Mahaan@review-of-movies.blogspot.com
05 - Rann Hai @review-of-movies.blogspot.com
06 - Remote Ko Baahar Phek@review-of-movies.blogspot.com
07 - Sikkon Ki Bhook (The Vande Mataram Song)@review-of-movies.blogspot.com

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Friday, December 25, 2009

3 Idiots - Movie Review

Read more! Cast :: Aamir Khan, Kareena Kapoor, R Madhavan, Sharman Joshi, Boman Irani , Sahastrabudhhe, Mona Singh, Parikshit Sahani, Javed Jaffrey.

Life is all about listening to your heart and chasing your dreams. That's the essence of 3 IDIOTS, directed by the supremely talented Rajkumar Hirani. Let me come to the point right away. There are films and there are more films. And then there's 3IDIOTS.

Come to think of it, 3 IDIOTS carries a huge 'burden' on its shoulders: The 'burden' of humungous expectations. And it's not without reasons...

# 3 IDIOTS is Aamir's next release after the record-breaker GHAJINI.

# 3 IDIOTS is Rajkumar Hirani and Vidhu Vinod Chopra's third film together, after MUNNABHAI MBBS and LAGE RAHO MUNNABHAI, landmark films.

# Three actors from the path-breaking RANG DE BASANTI team - Aamir, Madhavan and Sharman - team up yet again. Plus, Aamir's teaming up with Hirani. It couldn't get bigger!

3 IDIOTS is over-hyped and that could be dangerous for any film since it's the expectations which kill a film if the content doesn't match up to the hype. In this case, all izz well!

Now let's demystify the myths...
3 IDIOTS is not about idiots or nincompoops. It's about three engineering students who believe in 'I'll Do It On my Terms' and that's what the three characters achieve in life and that's what Hirani, Chopra, Aamir eventually achieve at the end of themovie. Making a movie on their terms! .

One more thing! You cannot draw parallels with any other film, past or present, successful or unsuccessful. And though people may draw parallels with GHAJINI or the MUNNABHAI series, it would be sacrilege to do so. 3IDIOTS [based on a novel 'FivePoint Someone' by Chetan Bhagat] doesn't tilt, it stands tall.

Here's yet another illusion: 3 IDIOTS belongs to Aamir Khan. Yes, it does, but also to R. Madhavan, Sharman Joshi, Boman Irani, Kareena Kapoor and Omi, the entrant in Hindi movies, who delivers an equally sterling performance. The film would be incomplete without any of these characters.

To cut a long story short, all you'd like to say about the film is, All izz very, very, very, very, very well. Watch this film to know what it means!

Two friends [R. Madhavan and Sharman Joshi] embark on a quest for a lost buddy. As they make their way through the perilous landscape [Shimla, Manali, Ladakh], another journey begins: their inner journey through memory lane and the story of their friend - the irrepressible free-thinker Rancho [Aamir Khan], who, in his unique way, touched and changed their lives.

It's a story of their hostel days that swings between Rancho's romance with the spirited Pia [Kareena Kapoor] and his clash with and oppressive mentor, Viru Sahastrabudhhe [Boman Irani]. And then one day, suddenly, Rancho vanishes...

Who was he? Where did he come from? Why did he leave? The friend who influenced and inspired them to think creatively and independently, even as the conformist world called them threeidiots. Where is the original idiot now?

Hirani is a genius and that has been proved twice in the past. He proves it for the third time with 3 IDIOTS. Screenplay writers Hirani and Abhijat Joshi and screenplay associate Vidhu Vinod Chopra narrate a story that's straight out of life. A story that each one of us can relate to or identify with.

Very often, we've read news-reports of students committing suicides because they've to live up to the family's pressure/expectations. This film depicts it at the very start, when a student commits suicide. But the issue doesn't end there, for 3IDIOTS raises a pertinent question: Was it suicide or murder?

Hirani balances the rough and smooth incidents in their lives beautifully. The sequences in the campus, right from the ragging sequence at the start, to Omi's speech when the word 'chamatkaar' is changed to 'balatkaar' [superb; will bring the house down], to the trio getting caught in an embarrassing situation at the reception of Kareena's sister [Mona Singh], to the dinner sequence at Sharman's house, to Kareena and Aamir driving Sharman's seriously ill father on their bike to the hospital... the funny moments would make your jaws ache.

The interval point is a shocker. The point at which the first half ends will leave you stunned. Now what was that? Kahani mein twist!

The mystery is solved soon after the intermission ends and a new journey begins. That's one of the USPs of the film. Just when you think that the story would be solved, a new story begins. Of course, the pace dips slightly in its second hour, especially during the delivery sequence of Mona [which may appear filmy to a few], but the immediate sequence, when the baby boy is born and also the subsequent sequence between Boman and Aamir bringthe film back on track. The culmination to the film is novel and yes, it's a master stroke from the writing point of view!

Every person behind the camera gives his/her best to the film. Hirani and Joshi's screenplay is the mainstay of the film. If you fondly recall 'Gandhigiri' from their previous film LAGE RAHO MUNNABHAI, you'd have a new phrase to chew on this time: 'All Izz Well'. Muraleedharan C.K.'s cinematography is awesome. Note the aerial view at the very start, when Madhavan and Sharman begin the journey to Shimla or the picture perfect look of Ladakh... the DoP does a magnificent job.

Shantanu Moitra's music may sound plain ordinary to ears, but when viewed on screen, the score is just perfect. 'Give Me Some Sunshine', 'All Is Well', 'Zoobie Doobie' are three tracks that would grow on you after you've watchedthe film . The choreography of 'All Izz Well' [Avit Dias] and 'Zoobie Doobie' [Bosco-Caesar] are eye-catching. The background score [Sanjay Wandrekar , Atul Raninga, Shantanu Moitra] is right.

3 IDIOTS belongs to everyone. But, yes, there's no denying that Aamir makes you forget all his past achievements as you watch the amazing actor play Rancho. To state that this ranks amongst his finest works would be an understatement. Madhavan is incredible, especially in the sequence when he explains hispoint of view to his father [Pareekshit Sahani]. Sharman is outstanding from start to end. This was a difficult role to portray and only an actor of calibre could've pulled it off. Boman is superb as the vicious head of the institute. The scenes between Aamir and Boman are extra-ordinary and it's a treat to watch these two powerful actors clash on the big screen, without getting overdramatic. Boman's appearance, mannerisms and dialogue delivery are exemplary.

The length of Kareena's role may not be as much as Aamir, Madhavan and Sharman, but she registers a strong impact nonetheless. Omi is excellent and the viewers are sure to love his acidic tongue and gestures in themovie. Mona Singh doesn't get much scope. Jaaved Jaffery is competent. Pareekshit Sahani is decent.

On the whole, 3 IDIOTS easily ranks amongst Aamir, Rajkumar Hirani and Vidhu Vinod Chopra's finest films. Do yourself and your family a favour: Watch 3IDIOTS. It's emotional, it's entertaining, it's enlightening. The film has tremendous youth appeal and feel-good factor to work in a big way.

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Saturday, December 19, 2009

Veer - Music Review

Read more! Cast:: Salman Khan,Sohail Khan,Mithun Chakraborty,Jackie Shroff,Zarine Khan, YashodharaLisa Lazarus,Gita Soto,Neena Gupta,Aryan Vaid,Bharat Dabholkar,Bunny Anand,Shahbaaz Khan,Puru Raaj Kumar,Tim Laurence,William Chubb,Rajesh Vivek,Ashok Samarth,Vinay Apte,Yogesh Suri

From the misty pages of history comes a story of extreme valour, fierce pride and poignant love. As the British enslave India with their devious Divide and Rule policy, kings and nawabs fall to their guile and cunning, and entrust their precious kingdom to the foreigners. Except for the brave Pindaris, who prefer death to dishonour and will fight to their last breath to save their land…their mother.

The bravest, the toughest, the strongest of the Pindaris is Veer. As Veer takes on the might of the British Empire, he also has to fight the conniving King of Madavgarh as well his own jealous tribesmen.

1. Taali
Begins with soulful wordings sung by Sukhwinder Singh. Then transits to a Gujarati themed song. Preferably meant for regional listeners only.

2. Surili Akhiyon Wale
Rahat Fateh Ali Khan's songs now seems to sound very similar. He uses the same flow and the same pitch for this song similar to 'Zindagi' from Dil Kabaddi. It also means that the song is equally good.

3. Salaam Aaya
Suits perfect for depicting the old King Rule era. Sweet lyrics with light music, a melody.

4. Meherbaniyan
The song only gets better when there is chorus singing of Meherbaniyan. Not the best from Sonu Nigam for sure.

5. Kanha - Thumri
Sensational song! Although much of the song features some other Indian Language then Hindi. So, there will be disparity between listeners but the two beginning lines you hear will leave you spellbound.

6. Spirit Of Veer - Instrumental
This is only the theme music of the film. Sounded childish to me.

There are no typical remixes but a duet and solo version of the earlier songs. Offers variety and are equally good.

Overall Music Review of Veer
Veer Music Album suits the theme of the film well and cleverly recreates pre-historic era through its music. One of the best works by music duo Sajid - Wajid in recent times. Lyricist Gulzar delivers adequately with his expertize lyrics. Choice of the singers for each song is remarkable, almost feels like that these songs were made by keeping them in mind.

Download MP3 Song
01 - Taali@review-of-movies.blogspot.com

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Friday, December 18, 2009

Avatar - Movie Review

Read more! Cast:: Sam Worthington, Zoe Saldana, Stephen Lang, Sigourney Weaver

Circa 2154. The US army lands up in Pandora, an earth-sized moon in outer space. Their objective: to extract the much-needed minerals from Pandora's soil. But before they can do that, they must fight the peace-loving indigenous inhabitants of the alien world, relocate or destroy them with their spies and bombs.

We thought sinking the Titanic was a titan task! Well, this time round, James Cameron chooses to play god and creates a whole new world with such exquisite finesse, aesthete and eye for detail, he almost takes your breath away. In terms of sheer technology, Avatar marks the coming of age of both CGI and 3-D cinema with its art house special effects and its shock and awe treatment.

On the one hand, it's the sheer iridescence of the canvas and the never-before contours of the creatures, the flora, the fauna flying across the screen that makes you marvel at how computers can augment creativity; on the other, it is the umpteen times you jump back to avoid the arrows, the guns or slide away from the floating dandelions and fierce raptors that leaves you completely mesmerised with this brand new cinematic experience. Truly, Cameron's vision of Pandora is pure art, with its tall, wide-eyed, slender, blue Na'vi people, it's post-modern creatures and its verdant greens.

But more than all this, it is Cameron's cry against war and violence that makes Avatar an eloquent testimonial to the present. Mercifully, the film isn't visual extravaganza alone; it has a meaningful story too that could end up making this magnum opus a modern-day parable for pacifists, climatologists, humanists, globalists.... For the filmmaker openly indicts America for its post 9/11 expansionist policies and clearly states: ``when people are sitting on shit that you want, you make them your enemies. That is the only way you justify taking the stuff away from them!'' Stuff? Minerals, here. Oil, in the real world.

It's a simple story, told straight. In this futuristic world, the US Armed Forces discover a source of priceless minerals in Pandora, a distant moon orbiting a star. They want to send in their troops to tame the indigenous Na'vi people, before extracting the minerals. But before they send their daisy-cutters and rocket launchers, they send in humans who have been transformed into Na'vi look-a-likes (they call them avatars) to infiltrate the peace-loving race and learn about their weaknesses and strengths. Enter, Jake Sully (Sam Worthington), a paraplegic marine, who is promised a pair of legs for betraying the pacifists ofPandora. It doesn't take long before Jake falls in love with the beautiful Neytiri (Zoe Saldana), the daughter of the Na'vi chief, and turns rogue on his own people. Can't blame him really, specially since his boss, Colonel Miles Quaritch (Stephen Lang) is a mean, macabre, war-mongerer who treats every non-American as ``a fly-bitten savage, living on trees.''

Avatar is indeed a complete cinematic experience, with cinematographer Mauro Fiore, music director James Horner and special effects maestro Joe Letteri joining hands with director/screenwriter James Cameron to create a strong and visually-stirring plea to save the world, before it is too late. And the only way the human species can do it is by abdicating its destructive tendencies. For Indophiles and Indian philosophy enthusiasts,Avatar is a whole treatise on Indianism, from the very word `Avatar' itself. Add to this the blue-skinned, monkey-tailed, god-like Na'vi race and the linkages could be endless....

A word about:

Performances: Surprisingly, there are no big names in Cameron's cast, but the characters are all credible and attention-grabbing. Both Sam Worthington and Zoe Saldana sculpt a warm love story as the blue-skinned human avtar and Na'vi woman. The film also marks the return of Sigourney Weaver in another tryst with aliens.

Music: James Horner composes a fine music score that has a fusion blend of both Oriental and the Occidental notes.

Cinematography: Pandora is a visual paradise, with each fern, each dandelion etched out in detail. Kudos to Mauro Fiore for this spledid tribute to Mother Nature.

Story: Cameron's story is both timely and topical with a strong anti-war statement finely blended with the evergreen romance between a human and an alien.

Dialogue: Simple, straight, yet hard-hitting, some of the lines are laced with humour too.

Special Effects: Absolutely first rate...Avatar justifies its bloated budget of being billed as the most expensive Hollywood film at approximately $500 million.

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Thursday, December 17, 2009

Pyaar Impossible - Music Review

Read more! Cast:: Uday Chopra,Priyanka Chopra,Dino Morea,Anupam Kher

Days after Yash Raj Films and composers Salim-Sulaiman came up with the soundtrack of Rocket Singh - Salesman of the Year arrives the music album of Pyaar Impossible. In fact this may well be the first for both the production house as well as the composer duo who have seen some work of theirs arriving in such quick succession. Given the fact that the film is titled Pyaar Impossible, has a glossy teenage feel to it and bears a vibrant look, one expects a happy soundtrack from the five songs, each of which is written by Anvita Dutt Guptan.

The promos look fresh and going by the soundtrack of this album, it could very well be the perfect rom-com Hindi movie for that ideal date. It certainly has got the lead actors bang-on, one being the hottie and the other is…whatever.

The lyrics written by Anvita Dutt sound simple, reflects femme attitude and with Miss PC lip syncing to it, makes one imagine delicious things.

Alisha has full-on attitude and is full of punk. Her voice is provided by Anushka Manchanda who is full of that required zest. Salim Merchant pitches in along with the chorus to give this song that extra edge. The Remix version is quick paced and has its own flavor.

Dominique Cerejo’s smooth vocals along with husky Vishal Dadlani talk about lovely things which are possible, but at the end it says Pyaar Impossible. It’s a lovely romantic number sure to top your list. Remix version - take your own pick!

You And Me has a feel similar to preceding tracks talking about two people different, yet one longs for the other. It’s an interesting combo of Neha Bhasin and Benny Dayal which make it a treat for your ears.

Starting off as a full-on rock track, 10 On 10 reeks with attitude. Mahua Kamat and Anushka Manchanda are perfect to get that across. The lyrics of the song are cool, hep and perfect for a prom night. It will soon become every hot chick’s anthem and every guy wanting his dream girl to be right there! Naresh Kamat is the sole male voice in this female dominated song.

Rishika Sawant sings Ek Thi Ladki with an element of simplicity and a story-telling mode. The composition has innocence to it just like reflected in nursery rhymes. It should be played with the credits of the movie rolling at the start.

The soundtrack is very much suited to the theme of the movie with each song reflecting how different the girl is from the boy in the question. The makers do get some catchy and fun-filled compositions across without treading the conventional route. Brilliant!

Due to its situational feel, one can't be expecting mega popularity for the album here. However, if one understands the intent of the album, the songs have been pretty much made to facilitate the album's narrative rather than being chartbusters that would get audiences in theaters. In this aspect, Salim-Sulaiman create a good situational album that may well drive the narrative rather than just fitting into it.

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01 - Alisha@review-of-movies.blogspot.com

Monday, December 14, 2009

Dulha Mil Gaya - Music Review

Read more! Cast:: Fardeen Khan,Sushmita Sen,Shahrukh Khan,Mohir Chadda,Tara Sharma,Johny Lever,Bina Kak,Suchitra Pillai,Viveck Vaswani,Howard Rosemeyer,Parikshat Sahni,Anushka Manchanda

Dulha Mil Gaya Music Album is surprisingly a super hit album with not even a single dull track. Features the major acclaimed singers including Sonu Nigam, Shreya Ghosal, Daler Mehndi and many others. Each song is equally good and the lyrics are worked upon well, although some songs might remind you of something similar heard before. But neverthless, the music directors - Lalit Pandit deserve special recognition.

This one is a voluminous album and the first track to come is 'Akela Dil' that has a groove similar to that of 'Gela Gela Dil Gela Gela' (Aitraaz). An unmistakable calypso rhythm is on the fore front here too, given the fact that the film is set in the Caribbean. Adnan Sami gets into an intoxicated and relaxed mood as per the demand of the situation and gets his own lazy style in place to sing 'Akela Dil' that has Anushka Manchanda giving able support. This is a kind of track that should add on to the visual appeal of the film. It's 'remix version' adds on the zing and should find a place in the clubs and discotheques.

Shiri farhad tu meri shiri is sung by the energetic Neeraj Shridhar but even he cannot salvage this banal song. Next, please!

Dulha mil gaya has shades of Mar jaani and is a watered-down version of that song. If you were wondering where Daler Mehndi was all along, he is back and infuses an unmatched energy into this song. It is catchy and can become quite popular especially because of the wedding season. It isn’t a memorable track, however!

Dilrubaon ke jalwe is a qawalli and an attempt to recreate SRK and Sush’s chemistry from Tumse milke from Main Hoon Na. You don’t want to stick around till it is over.

1. Akela Dil
The album opens with Akela dil sung by Anushka and Adnan Sami, both wasted in the tuneless, wannabe hip-hop track that goes on forever. Everything in the song seems forced! The incessant clapping, guitar tunes and ‘nanana’ get on your nerves.A song by Adnan Sami, very similar to one of the songs from the film ‘Mujhse Shaadi Karogi’ in terms of music and the way he sang it. But still very entertaining.

2. Aaja Aaja Mera Ranjhna
Aaja mera ranjhana is your typical 90's wedding song. You can even imagine the red and gold costumes everyone will wear and their dance moves. It brings back memories of Saajan ji ghar aaye from Kuch Kuch Hota Hai. Listen to that instead.

3. Magar Meri Jaan
Magar meri jaan sounds like something you’ve heard before which is why it is tolerable. It tries too hard to be upbeat and rapturous. Song features Sonu Nigam, with that said the song already claims to be a hit. The slow notes are mesmerizing as compared to main stanza (mukhra) of this song which is just OK. Salsa themed ‘Magar Meri Jaan’ is contemporary time pass song. Anushka Manchanda, the singer does an exceptional job.

4. Tu Jo Jaan Le
Tu jo jaan le is the standard Sonu Nigam song. The piano and guitars are pretty good and Sonutakes the song a few notches higher.

5. Rang Diya Dil
Rang diya dil is the kind of Amrita Rao would be part of. Imagine a girl waiting in the village for her lover and praying to the moon. So it is typical and very 90's. We have heard this type of songs, way too many times in the times but no credits snatched from the singer Shreya Ghosal. Her voice adds a wonderful feel to this song.

6. Dulha Mil Gaya
Daler Mehndi is back with another super hit. Lyrics seems to be out, straight from his heart. Total dance party track.

7. Dilrubaon Ke Jalwe
The effort that went to this song is tremendous. All thanks to lyrics writer and singers for giving us a classic qawwali themed song.

8. Shiri Farhad Tu Meri Shiri
Not want to criticize this song about being another duplicate. But the resemblance cannot be ignored.

Out of the 3 Remixes only the ‘Dilrubaon Ke Jalwe’ looks genuinely worked upon. Rest are just fast paced songs with non matching music.

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01 - Akela Dil - Dulha Mil Gaya@review-of-movies.blogspot.com

Chance Pa Dance - Music review

Read more! Cast:: Shahid Kapoor, Genelia Dsouza

Chance Pe Dance is the story of a talented and passionate Sameer. Positive and brimming with energy, Sameer juggles various jobs while working towards getting his big break in the industry. During his struggle he meets Tina who is a choreographer.

Just when Sameer is promised his big break, he is left without a house as he cannot pay his rent. Not one to lose heart Sam starts living in his rickety old car and starts teaching dance in a school to young kids who have never won any dance competition. He hates kids and the kids hate dancing.

The struggle in life continues as the director who was to launch Sameer now decides to choose his hero through a talent hunt. Sam is shattered but he diverts his focus towards the kids. Getting over his initial dislike of children, Sam not only emotionally bonds with them, but also helps them win a prestigious inter-school dance competition and gets their confidence back - aided by the spirited and beautiful Tina.

Tina urges Sameer to enter the reality hunt, with the love and support from Tina and the kids, Sameer emerges a winner and eventually becomes what he was destined to be, a superstar.

Chance Pe Dance Music Album is made for dance enthusiasts and which already gives an impression the movie is going to rock, atleast with the songs. There are also 2 love songs, both are not very new but worth listening and also making this album a complete package. Adnan Sami is the star of this album with his new flavor of music.

1. Pe..Pe..Pepein...
After the huge success of the song 'Aahun Aahun' from 'Love Aaj Kal,' Neeraj Shridhar and Master Saleem have teamed up again to bring another peppy track, I mean pe pe pe track with rocking hardcore rap from Hard Kaur of course.

2. Pump It Up
Music is deadly, this song is more about the music then the lyrics. Made for dance enthusiasts.

3. Pal Mein Hi
A romantic track with wonderful composition. Singers - Shreya and Soham have contributed to the song equally well.

4. One More Dance
Disco track with foot tapping music. Another made for dance songs.

5. Yaba Daba Yahoo
Voice modulation by Kunal Ganjawala deserves appreciation. A complete junglee song.

6. Rishta Hai Mera
Tulsi Kumar's voice quality fall short in front of Shaan. Decent song overall.

7. Just Do It
This is a short Rap song with funny groove. Music adds to the compliment.

The 2 remixes included in the album are definitely an added bonus. Music is what makes them happening.

Download MP3 Songs
01 - Chance Pa Dance - Pe Pe Pepein Male Edition@review-of-movies.blogspot.com

Friday, December 11, 2009

Rocket Singh - Salesman Of The Year - Movie Review

Read more! Cast:: Ranbir Kapoor,Shazahn Padamsee,Sharon Prabhakar,Gauhar Khan,Prem Chopra,Mukesh Bhatt,Manish Choudhary

Two years after delivering a hit on the hockey fields with CHAK DE INDIA, Shimit Amin returns, this time with business as the field of play. Yet again, he delivers a product with finesse. ROCKET SINGH appeals, endears, and warms the cockles of one's heart.

Ranbir Kapoor is in that phase of his innings right now, where he can do no wrong. He is, in sporting parlance, what you call 'in the Zone'. Anything he does just shines. He has that uncanny knack of 'becoming' the character, body language and all... He is such a joy to watch.

Ranbir is Harpeet Singh Bedi, a youngster who just manages to sc**** through his B.Com exams and one who is not interested in CAT. He wants to work as a salesman. He lands a job as a trainee at AYS Computers and within a few days is blasted for being a 'Mahatma in the jungle.' He complains against an employee of a firm who buys bulk orders from AYS because he is asking for his 'Cut'.

AYS boss and their sales manager see red. He is insulted and asked to make just 'cold calls' from his desk. Things take a turn for the worse when he is humiliated further by his boss. This, when all he wanted to do was tell his boss that he was using his office space to start his own company,Rocket Sales Corp.

Slowly he wins the hearts of four of his colleagues including the Sales Manager to buck up his sales order, which by now is on the upswing. Rocket Sales Corp steals the orders right from AYS's noses. They offer round-the-clock service and at a very competitive rate with minimal profit margins. Flustered, his boss offers to buy his company for Rs 60 lakhs. This call is made from within the same office and his boss does not know whom he is speaking with. To cut the long story short, their game is up when the boss makes a call to the MD ofRocket sales and finds that the phone rings in his own office.

Harpreet is forced to sign on a document, which waives off his right as an owner. But, this is not a win for his boss as he soon realizes that none ofRocket Sales' clients are now willing to do business with AYS even though both the companies have merged. And therein lies the business fundas ofRocket Sales Corp.

Shimit takes a neutral view of the business field and lays bare the employee-boss relationship as well as the 'percentage party' where the customer is the scapegoat. In the final analysis, as Harpreet tells his boss, it is not about driving your employees nuts to achieve sales target but by understanding them.

Shazahn Padamsee who makes her debut has the talent to come through. However, she has to work hard on her dialogue delivery and body language. Ditto Gauahar Khan who too makes her debut. Prem Chopra as Ranbir's grandfather finally gets a role of substance, suited to his age and he does a wonderful job. A complete shift from the crass acts he has been made to do of late. The Sales Manager shines through, as well as the guy who assembles computers. Both characters are cleverly crafted.

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Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Rocket Singh - Salesman Of The Year - Music Review

Read more! Cast:: Ranbir Kapoor,Shazahn Padamsee,Sharon Prabhakar,Gauhar Khan,Prem Chopra,Mukesh Bhatt,Manish Choudhary

Ranbir Kapoor is definitely the flavour of the season. With two back-to-back hits in "Wake Up Sid" and "Ajab Prem Ki Ghazab Kahani" he surely seems to be having the best year out of the current crop of Bollywood actors. His boyish charm and disarming smile have won him loads of female admirers who can’t help but go "Oh….so shweet!" when they see RK as the diligent corporate employee in Rocket Singh - Salesman of the Year.

However, the first job for Harmeet Singh Bedi, played by Ranbir Kapoor (I bet you thought his character name was Rocket Singh), is to sell the three-track album of this movie. At first, I thought I bought a ‘Best-Of Yash Raj’ music collection. It was only when I saw the back-cover that I realized that 13 out of the 15 tracks on the album are not even from the movie.

Pocket Mein Rocket’ needs no introduction. The video features an extra-smiley Ranbir Kapoor flashing his visiting card. The song is a pun on the word ‘Rocket’ which is printed on his visiting card (although I wonder why, if that’s not his name). This track’s fun, funky and addictive. Benny Dayal has earned his reputation with AR Rahman (Yuvraaj and Ghajini) and he delivers the right emotions to introduce the lovable Ranbir in his turban-clad avatar via this song. The lyrics, through slightly inane, make sense with the video.

Gadbadi-Hadbadi’ builds up slowly and needs a few listens to really dig its teeth into you. The Vishal Dadlani-Salim-Sulaiman combo did a great job in Kurbaan but here they don’t work as instantaneously. The song has its moments but is essentially a mid-tempo ballad with smooth guitar riffing. Like ‘Pocket Mein Rocket’, this one needs to be digested with the video.

One song that doesn’t require the video to make an impact on you is the acoustic and soulful ‘Pankhon Ko’ rendered ever-so beautifully by Salim Merchant. It’s one of those beautiful unplugged ballads that needs only an acoustic guitar and vocals to make your hair stand (eg. ‘Phir Dekhiye’ from Rock On). It’s undoubtedly the best track of the album, despite not being anywhere as ambitious as the first two.

The rest of the album is dotted with hit songs from former Yash Raj films like Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi, Bachna Ae Haseeno and Tashan. Tracks like ‘Hadippa’ and ‘Discowale Khisko’ (Dil Bole Hadippa) are songs that make you wish they featured in the soundtrack.

Bottomline: Do the three tracks from ‘Rocket Singh - Salesman of the Year’ stand out from the aforementioned Bollywood hits? Except for ‘Pankhon Ko’, I would have to say no!
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Thursday, December 3, 2009

Paa - Movie Review

Read more! Cast:: Amitabh Bachchan, Abhishek Bachchan, Amol Atre, Vidya Balan, Paresh Rawal

Can you ever imagine watching an Amitabh Bachchan film and not watching Amitabh Bachchan in it? Seems impossible, isn't it? The towering persona and the rich baritone just cannot be overlooked. But R. Balki transforms the legendary actor into Auro, replaces the rich baritone with the voice of an adolescent [who's neither grown up, nor a kid] and taps the hitherto untapped talent of the icon.

Trust me, 10 minutes into the film and you forget you're watching Amitabh Bachchan. For, Auro takes over the moment he is introduced to the viewer.

PAA is a simple film told in the most simplistic manner and that's one of the prime reasons why this film works big time. The emotions would've fallen flat had the writing been sub-standard or the execution of the material been humdrum or the actors been inferior. But, thankfully, PAA scores in all three departments, although it must be said that the entire slum redevelopment episode is a complete put-off.

Yet, all said and done, PAA is an outstanding film. A film for every paa, every maa... for everyone with a heart. Take a bow, Auro!

Auro (Amitabh Bachchan) is an intelligent, witty 13-year-old boy with an extremely rare genetic defect that causes accelerated ageing. He suffers from progeria. Mentally, he is 13, very normal, but physically he looks five times older.

Inspite of his condition, Auro is a happy boy. He lives with his mother Vidya (Vidya Balan), a gynaecologist, but is completely clueless of his father's identity. Till he meets him, Amol (Abhishek Bachchan), who is a full of ideals politician.

Okay, let's not disrespect Balki by calling PAA a rip-off of THE CURIOUS CASE OF BENJAMIN BUTTON or JACK. It's not! PAA looks at the varied relationships so minutely. It may've been publicized as a father-sonfilm, but the women - mother and granny - play equally pivotal parts.

The first hour of PAA grips you in patches. The introduction of Auro is brilliant, but the moment the story focuses on the politician and his arch rival's sub-plot, it goes off-track. Sure, there are some interesting sequences, but the impact isn't mesmeric.

But the post-interval portions take the film to dizzy heights and camouflages the defects. The father-son bonding and the penultimate 25 minutes raise the bar. The emotional quotient is tremendous. Get ready to overhear a lot of sniffs and see a lot of moist eyes once the lights are switched on.

Note the two sequences in the climax, when Auro reveals what his father's first mistake was and the pheras towards the end. Also recall the scene when the girl Auro detests for a certain reason shows up with a sketch of Auro. It moves you completely.

But let's not mistaken PAA to be a rona-dhona movie. It's a positive film with funny/light moments in plenty. The conversation between Auro and his best friend, on various occasions, are superb. Also, not once does PAA show Auro as 'different'. He's one among the kids and there's no discrimination whatsoever, which is remarkable.

Director R. Balki deserves a salute for thinking out of the box and also presenting Amitabh Bachchan like never before. The writing may be erratic, but his handling of the emotional moments is exemplary. Note this, he would be a force to reckon with after PAA. Ilaiyaraaja's music is soothing. P.C. Sreeram's cinematography is incredible.

It would be a blunder if one missed out the contribution of the makeup artists. Transforming the veteran actor into a kid must've been an arduous task and Christien Tinsley and Domini Till deserve to be complimented for making Auro look so real.

Now to the performances! No amount of praise, no amount of adjectives and personifications would do justice to Amitabh Bachchan's performance as Auro. Sure, the icon has enthralled us with superlative performances in his four-decade career, but PAA is something else. The icon keeps surprising you at regular intervals and PAA is one of those beautiful surprises, which will remain etched in your memory forever.

That doesn't mean that the remaining performances get dwarfed by Auro. Sure, PAA belongs to Auro, but not once does Abhishek Bachchan dither from his position or seems less inferior. This is the hallmark of a tremendous actor, which Abhishek is. Vidya is another surprise of PAA. She takes giant strides as an actor and proves yet again that given the right roles, she can match up to the best in the business.

Paresh Rawal is effective. Arundhati Naag is amazing. So is the kid, Pratik, enacting the role of Auro's best buddy. His telephonic conversation with Auro is superb. Jaya Bachchan's presence is lovely.

On the whole, PAA is an amazing experience. It makes you realize two things. One, the Hindi film industry is also capable of narrating fresh stories. Two, Amitabh Bachchan is truly the most accomplished actor this side of the Atlantic.

Talking from the business point of view, PAA has been made in a sensible and reasonable budget (approx. Rs. 17 crores, including P & A expenses), which should easily be recovered from multiplexes alone.

In the final tally, here's a film that should win awards (for Auro) and also box-office rewards, given its low costs. A film that should strike a chord with every paa, maa... just about everyone with a heart!

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Udhi Udhi Ittefaq Se@review-of-movies.blogspot.com

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Friday, November 27, 2009

De Dana Dan - Movie Review

Read more! Cast :: Akshay Kumar, Katrina Kaif, Sunil Shetty, Paresh Rawal, Neha Dhupia, Sameera Reddy, Johny Lever, Asrani, Rajpal Yadav.

"De Dana Dan" is the most bizarre film from the maharaja of laughathons, Priyadarshan. Not even in your wildest dream you'd think that Priyadarshan would place almost an entirefilm in a hotel and have its entire cast.

But Priyadarshan needs to be credited for pulling it off. There are times when you laugh hysterically at the most outlandish jokes and situations. There are times when a raised eyebrow or a wide-open jaw makes you break into a guffaw.

Be cautioned. "De Dana Dan" is a loud film, with each and every character screaming on top of his/her voice, with the characters shouting, running, even floating and swimming in the end.

But what do you expect in a Priyadarshan film that has a title like "De Dana Dan"? The promos never promised path-breaking or thought-provoking cinema that would give birth to debates and discussions. So why look for logic in this one?

"De Dana Dan" makes no qualms of narrating a story you haven't heard before. Here, the story is non-existent and it's left on Priyadarshan to mix-n-match those two dozencharacters and keep the momentum alive for the next 2.45 hours.

"De Dana Dan" promises laughter and entertainment and sticks to its promise. This one's not for the hard-nosed types, but for those who worship escapist cinema. Who want to chuckle, giggle and chortle at those mindless jokes. In short, "De Dana Dan" is a pure dhamaal entertainer!

Nitin (Akshay Kumar) is a butler, cook, driver, watchman, gardener to a wealthy female industrialist (Archana Puran Singh) in Singapore. Like any young man, Nitin too dreams of a better life. He desperately wants to become rich and marry the love of his life, Anjali (Katrina Kaif), who supports him financially.

Ram (Sunil Shetty), Nitin's best friend, also came to Singapore with the dream of striking it rich, but ended up a courier delivery man. He falls for Manpreet (Sameera Reddy), but her high society parents will never approve of marriage, not unless Ram has lots and lots of money.

In the midst of all this is Harbans (Paresh Rawal), a shrewd businessman, who's looking for ways to multiply his income and avoid his debtors. He decides the best way would be to marry his son (Chunky Pandey) off to a girl whose parents can give him a large dowry. He is introduced to Manpreet's parents at a function and is impressed by their social status. He introduces himself as a well-established businessman, impresses them and they decide to get Manpreet and Harbans' son married.

With several factors working against them, Nitin and Ram soon reach a dead end in their relationships. When both receive ultimatums from their girlfriends, they realize that only a life of vice can help them out of their misery. They come up with an audacious plan to kidnap someone important and demand a ransom.

The kidnapping goes awry and both hide at a local hotel while waiting for the ransom money. But misfortune is never far and the kidnapping spirals out of control.

Meanwhile, Manpreet's wedding reception is being held at the same hotel that Nitin and Ram are hiding in. Soon, they are joined by a motley set ofcharacters including a Chinese Don (Asrani), a hired assassin (Johny Lever), a ACB police inspector (Sharat Saxena), a club dancer (Neha Dhupia), an ambassador (Vikram Gokhale), a young frustrated double crossing wife (Aditi Govitrikar), a letch (Shakti Kapoor), a drunken waiter (Rajpal Yadav) and a dead body nobody wants to check into the hotel.

"De Dana Dan" is atypical Priyadarshan film that has the unmistakable stamp all over it. But, at the same time, "De Dana Dan" is erratic and uneven - energetic at times, lethargic at places. Also, the culmination to the film is very similar to the director's earlier works, with the entire cast running helter-skelter.

On the flip side, you miss Akshay's presence in the second hour. He disappears (gets locked in a cupboard) for at least 20 minutes and the focus, hence, shifts to the othercharacters. His fans will miss his presence, for sure. Besides, the film tends to get very lengthy towards the second half and overtly verbose too.

Director Priyadarshan is synonymous with comedies and the ace storyteller promises laughter in abundance. Handling so many characters, plus making a film on mistaken identities could be very tough, but the director gets it right. Pritam's music is alright, while the RDB track, 'Paisa', is the pick of the lot. Salim-Sulaiman's background score is energetic. K. Ahambaram's cinematography is alright.

The review would be incomplete if one ignored the dialogue writer's (Jay Master) contribution to the film. The lines are laced with wit and soaked in humour and bring the house down on several occasions.

"De Dana Dan" has so many characters that it gets difficult to pinpoint or single out any one actor. Akshay is at his best in a Priyadarshan film and "De Dana Dan" proves it. Sunil is natural to the core. Paresh is incredible; he pitches in a superb act. Katrina and Sameera don't have much to do. Amongst the plethora of actors, Johny Lever, Neha Dhupia, Manoj Joshi, Asrani, Vikram Gokhale and Archana Puransingh deserve special mention.

On the whole, "De Dana Dan" is targeted at the masses and it delivers laughter in abundance. Leave your brains behind to enjoy this madcap entertainer!

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