My long hibernation from my blog is still on. But I am back to post this guest post by my good friend Arnab. He writes about Vickramaditya Motwane’s latest feature – Lootera. And beware, plenty of spoilers.
Whether you like it or not, you will go in to watch Lootera with O. Henry’s ‘The Last Leaf’ performing background operations in your mind, an unsolicited .exe file you wish weren’t there. Almost everyone has read Henry’s classic short story where Behrman paints ‘his masterpiece’, a leaf to replace the last leaf on a tree that fell one cold, winter night in quaint old Greenwich village. The simplicity of the story almost makes you wonder how its adaptation set in rural Bengal and Dalhousie in the years following decolonisation would work. But as the first reel rolls on, you are transported into a world that is very different from what Henry scripted, a canvas which not only delights your senses but also unconsciously nudges you into a state of temporary amnesia where ‘The Last Leaf’ ceases to matter. The background operations in your mind stop.
Many other reviewers have already written at length about the bromance, the backdrop of Gujarat, and the two mammoth events that surround Abhishek Kapoor’s sophomore act – Kai Po Che . But it would be completely unfair if we were to sum up Kai Po Che with just that outline. Based on Chetan Bhagat’s Three Mistakes Of My Life, Kai Po Che offers so much more that even on my best attempt, I feel the inadequacy of my embrace. I have already attempted to write this review, and then had to re-write it a few more times. I found myself at loss of words when I tried to sum up my thoughts on a movie so rich, and profound, that it only led me to a never-ending sea of ideas that I kept rediscovering.
Kamal Hassan’s terrorist ass kicking magnum opus Vishwaroop has been doing the rounds for all the wrong reasons. Let me begin with this; it didn’t offend me at all. And to all those dumb-nuts shouting for their 15 seconds of fame to ban this, what is your problem ? Did you have a problem with an Indian muslim going underground to mingle with the Taliban? Or was it Kamal Hassan’s choice of Kathak over BharatNatyam, or his hair-style that left you cold? Leaving all the controversy hoopla aside, does the movie add up to all the hype? After all, even though Kamal Hassan has been a big sensation down south, this is an actor who is way past his prime. And I say that even after being a big fan of his work. Vishwaroop does get quite a few things right, but there’s a lot to chew here, and most of it is bland.
WARNING: This review has some spoilers.
I recently contributed a snippet on my most favourite Bollywood moment in 2012 for the year-end special podcast on Upodcast (listen to this mammoth 3 hr special here). And I got my thinking hat on, and recapped the year 2012 in Bollywood cinema. It has indeed been a year of lovely moments that stayed with me, long after the end credits had rolled. I had to squeeze out just one moment out of the following, and I’ll leave the guess work to you, as to which one I chose for the podcast.
But for now, here are my 10 most amazing and awesome Bollywood moments of 2012 (in no particular order).
[Of course, as I will be discussing specific scenes, these are mega-spoiler material. So, you've been warned ]