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Movie Reviews & Editorials

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Blog posts March 2016

Kapoor & Sons - Movie Review

Verdict - "A relatable and a staggering portrayal of life."

Realize, understand, forgive and move on is a simple tactic that we all pursue in our day-to-day lives to avoid complications. But what if things go rampant and tear down your life in an inconceivable way?!

Starring Rishi Kapoor, Rajat Kapoor, Ratna Pathak, Sidharth Malhotra, Fawad Khan and Alia Bhatt in the lead roles; Kapoor & Sons is a story about two brothers Arjun (Sidharth) and Rahul (Fawad) as they return to India nearly after five years to visit their family and grandfather who is ill and breathing his final days in life. As the situations get intense will this unhinged volatile family endure the reality and forgive the mistakes they've done in life? 

Written and directed by Shakun Batra, the story was by far the most impressive aspect of this film. Although the run-through and the family drama felt a bit primitive, Batra took a different approach in explaining an intrinsic storyline in an appealing way by adding few diverse key elements that were highlighted and handled skilfully.

But the film had few pacing issues especially in the first half where it felt a bit out-of-place heading in a disordered direction. Few scenes felt quite unnecessary that needlessly expanded the runtime of the film which could've easily been shortened down to 15-20 minutes.

Nonetheless, the well-rounded relatable characters and the performances from the entire cast were remarkable. Rishi Kapoor served a comical relief and embraced his quirky character amazingly. Rajat Kapoor and Ratna Pathak were also astonishing with their strong performances. 

Sidharth Malhotra and Fawad Khan had startling chemistry between them and were completely believable as brothers during many emotional and joyful. Alia Bhatt's character felt a bit odd, even though the writer took the time to explain her back story it did immerse me emotionally. But her performance was energetic and marvelous at the same time that made me enjoy her presence in the movie.

As per the technical aspects of the film, the cinematography by Jeffery F. Bierman was dazzling and strikingly exquisite. The light, locations, and the vibe that he used to capture these shots were truly amazing and certainly needs appreciation. Also, the background score by Sameer Uddin was fitting and engaged with the movie perfectly.

Overall, Kapoor & Sons is a film that everyone can relate to, despite the fact it had few pacing issues, Shakun Batra's story, characters, cinematography and the staggering performances from the complete cast made the movie really enjoyable to watch and was undoubtedly one of the best movies I've seen in this year so far.

My Rating - 3.5/5
Grade - B+ (A perfect weekend pick!)
-By Surya Komal aka KM (@SuryaKomal)

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Jai GangaaJal - Movie Review

Verdict - "Agonizing and disappointing"

With the ongoing trend of making a strong female character driven films, Bollywood had a pretty good track record in the past couple of years where movies like Queen, Mardaani, Tanu Weds Manu, Piku and many more garnered both critical and commercial success.

Although Priyanka's last women-centric film "Mary Kom" was a bit of a disappointment, my expectations for "Jai GangaaJal" were considerably high, not only because of PC's compelling look but also because it's directed by Prakash Jha who is a pioneer when it comes to directing realistic political dramas. So, did Jai GangaaJal meet my expectations?

*Cue dramatic music* In the world where corruption doesn't have a sympathetic conclusion, where policemen are forced to follow the line drawn by politicians, where people are contrived to follow their leader's orders arrives a fearless women police officer who was placed in between a group of reckless police officers and hard-nosed politicians. Will she prevail over? Or will she fail? Watch it in "Jai GangaaJal".

Here are my complaints, the story line of the movie had new to offer, it is flat-out boring and failed to seize my attention. And with a mundane script, the run time of the film is unbearably long as I kept checking my watch constantly. It never required a 2hr, 40 minutes extended stretch as they're many unwanted scenes that could've been sliced in the editor's room. When it comes to the screenplay of the film, it was all over the place with a complicated vibe that would've been avoided. They're certain scenes in the film that didn't have a definite conclusion and ended abruptly and few scenes that were just randomly placed.

And on the bright side, the performances from the complete cast were satisfactory. Priyanka Chopra was impressive with her brave, gutsy persona but her character was not well thought out and totally missed the emotional part. Prakash Jha's performance was surprisingly good and his negative character was particularly intriguing to watch.

Overall, Jai GangaaJal is not a movie that I rush you to go and watch. This political drama had few imposing aspects like the performances but was a major let down on a narrative standpoint and moreover it is too long that made me more agonizing. I'm sorry, but this movie didn't work out for me.

My Rating - 2.5/5
Grade - C+ (It deserves your attention for a while!)
-By Surya Komal aka KM (@SuryaKomal)

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