Planet Bollywood

Thums Up - Thums Down for the Week - 9 Oct 2013
  BWAHAHAHA….`Grand Masti`!
  - Samir Dave
Selection based on Planet Bollywood critics recommendations           Let us know what you think about this
 

Not for the faint of heart of for the prudish, Indra Kumar’s “Grand Masti” is naughty fun with a capital N, while we advise you take a look at “Chennai Express” again for Deepika Padukone’s powerhouse performance!

Thums Up - Recent Films Worth Watching :-)
 Grand Masti
Naughty naughty Mr. Indra Kumar! Just when you think it’s safe to go to the cinema, out comes a movie like “Grand Masti” which blasts the viewer with vulgarity, crassness, and pure juvenile humor and you know what? It works! The film has no socially redeemable quality whatsoever, but like popcorn with caramel and extra sugar on top, I ate it all up and enjoyed myself tremendously. Now, I’m a fan of the original “Masti” which I thought was quite fun in a deviant sort of way, but this one takes the deviant cake. Directed by Indra Kumar (the man who used to direct more traditional romantic films like “Dil”), he takes the phrase “mujhe neend na aye…” to a whole different and more sexual level. The film has the stereotypical base plotline of husbands unhappily married who are extremely sexually frustrated, and that frustration comes out in juvenile behavior. That’s it! That’s all you need to know. Vivek Oberoi, Aftab Shivdasani, and Ritesh Deshmukh share a great chemistry, and that’s what carries the film on lingerie clad shoulders. The music by long lost Anand Raj Anand and Sanjeev Darshan is totally “yawn”. Whatever happened to Indra Kumar’s movies having great soundtracks? Let’s face it, you really just want to see these guys get into crazy situations and enjoy the eye candy that Sonalee Kulkarni, Manjari Fadnis, Karishma Tanna, Maryam Zakaria, Bruna Abdullah, and Kainaat Arora provide. So, take a deep breath, do some yoga (preferably with a partner), and enjoy the incorrigible masti of “Grand Masti”.


 Chennai Express
 PB Rating: 7.0 out of 10  Public Rating (by 406 unique users): 5.13
 Director: Rohit Shetty  Producer: Gauri Khan, Karim Morani, Ronnie Screwvala, Siddharth Roy Kapur
 Music: Vishal-Shekhar  Lyrics: Amitabh Bhattacharya
 Starring: Shahrukh Khan, Deepika Padukone, Priyamani(Item Number)
 Genre: Comedy  Recommended Audience: General
Shah Rukh Khan got a face lift. There, I said it. Now you can lambast me all you want, but darned if he doesn’t look ten years younger in most of the scenes of the Rohit Shetty (and company) directed “Chennai Express”. In fact there is one scene where he makes hand gestures towards his face alluding to the fact that he’s gotten a face lift. In any case, SRK is his usual “K-K-K-Krazy” self in this film that really defies all sense of logic and throws it out the window. It’s a fun movie, which really showcases the star of the film, Deepika Padukone. What!?!? You are probably thinking, “Come on yaar, how dare you not say SRK is the dishum dishum star!?!?” Well, SRK is indubitably a star, but to me Deepika Padukone is the one “y-only” reason to watch this movie. She is in short incredible in every scene and any lesser actor would have thrown the movie into a tailspin. Shah Rukh once again plays, “Rahul” (he must be in the Guinness Book of World Records as the actor that has portrayed the most characters named Rahul in his career). He escapes the clutches of his grandfather (quite literally and selfishly), to go on a trip with his friends and live life. On the train, he bumps into the daughter of a mobster, Meena (Deepika Padukone). Thus the hilarity begins and continues throughout the movie. Vishal-Shekhar will make you don your lungi and dance as they provide the better than average music. Watch this film, and if you already have, see it again. This is one express train you don’t want to miss!

 Besharam
 PB Rating: 6.0 out of 10  Public Rating (by 406 unique users): 5.1
 Director: Abhinav Singh Kashyap  Producer: Sanjeev Gupta, Himanshu Kishan Mehra
 Music: Ishq Bector, Shree D, Lalit Pandit  Lyrics: Kumaar, Rajeev Barnwal, Nikhat Khan, Himanshu Kishan Mehra
 Starring: Ranbir Kapoor, Pallavi Sharda, Jaaved Jaaferi, Rishi Kapoor, Neetu Singh, Amitosh Nagpal
 Genre: Action, Comedy, Romantic  Recommended Audience: General
First off, the only sole reason this film is in the Thums UP section is due to the “ish”STYLE ™ of Ranbir Kapoor as the lead character Babli in director Abhinav Kashyap’s “Besharam”. The director’s previous film, “Dabangg” raised expectations for this one, and those expectations are only partly met. It suffers from moments of “say what” confusion, to moments of hilarious “right on” clarity. The uneven screenplay by the director and Rajeev Barnwal simply does not hold up throughout the length of the movie. Neetu Singh and Rishi Kapoor are so much fun to watch, but alas, this is not the best vehicle to be in with their son. The lead actress Pallavi Sharda doesn’t really impress. Oh she’s a fair actor, but shares absolutely zero “sizzle” chemistry with Ranbir. The music by Lalit Pandit (who is capable of better than his compositions here), is imminently forgettable. Again, when all is said and done, you’ll probably share some laughs and admire Ranbir Kapoor’s versatility (the actor should escape this so-so film unscathed), but one can’t help but feel that this movie could have been so much more. Do watch it, don’t expect much, and don’t make me say, “I told you so”. It’s a masala paan fillum full of nonsensical filling, fun and totally harmless to a point. Now, I think I’ll go back to watch “Dabangg” to see what director Abhinav Kashyap is really capable of!

 Shuddh Desi Romance
 PB Rating: 7.0 out of 10  Public Rating (by 404 unique users): 5.12
 Director: Maneesh Sharma  Producer: Aditya Chopra
 Music: Sachn Sanghvi, Jigar Saraiya  Lyrics: Jaideep Sahni
 Starring: Parineeti Chopra, Sushant Singh Rajput, Vaani Kapoor, Rishi Kapoor
 Genre: Comedy, Romantic, Drama  Recommended Audience: Parental Guidance
Romance is so complicated today. Forget the flirting and come hither glances, it’s more like full on “dishum dishum” now (if you know what I mean). It seems like the modern life has left simple romance on the curbside waiting for cupid’s rickshaw to take it away. Enter the complicated romance based rom-com, “Shuddh Desi Romance”, in which director Maneesh Sharma (“Band Baaja Baraat”), brings forth a tale that sheds light on the growing trend of live in relationships. The film is entertaining yaar in a way that will make your parents blush. Sushant Singh Rajput leaves the ghost of “Pavitra Rishta’s” Manav Deshmukh way behind and proves that he is the actor for the new generation. Parineeti Chopra is quite frankly the best of the new actors, her performance is effortless, and Vanni Kapoor also is an actor to watch out for. The music by Sachin-Jigar is pleasant and unobtrusive. Kudos to Yash Raj Films for presenting writer Jaideep Sahni’s (“Bunty Aur Babli”) riveting take on the pursuit of love amidst the physicality of differences. Well worth your time to watch, the film will keep you guessing till the end. Today, it’s not about the simple romance, it’s all about the complex emotions of love and heartbreak that comes from frank honesty, “Shuddh Desi Romance” will certainly entertain you and get you thinking.

 Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani
 PB Rating: 7.0 out of 10  Public Rating (by 403 unique users): 5.13
 Director: Ayan Mukerji  Producer: Karan Johar
 Music: Pritam  Lyrics: Amitabh Bhattacharya , Kumaar
 Starring: Ranbir Kapoor , Deepika Padukone , Aditya Roy Kapur , Kalki Koechlin & Others
 Genre: Romantic  Recommended Audience: General
They say that love makes the world go around, and we have this ideal in our hearts that mystifies this feeling of absolute bliss. Then the real world comes crashing through, taking us through life, this way and that. Love gets detoured, but eventually finds its way. Such is the way of things in Ayan Mukerji’s “Yeh Jaawani Hai Deewane”. First of all, before you even begin to try to appreciate (or not) this movie, you need to forget for the moment how good “Wake Up Sid” was. If you compare this new film to that one, you might be ever so slightly disappointed. Unfortunately, to compare is to be human. “Yeh Jaawani Hai Deewane” is a fun, frivolous and fresh film that delights the viewer with its tarnished innocence. The best part of the film is of course Ranbir Kapoor who literally lights a fuse that never dies down with his portrayal of the lead character, Bunny. The other best part is of course, Deepika Padukone who simply is one of the best female actors in Bollywood today. Her performance is totally captivating and emotional .Of course, the basic premise of the film centers around the travails of love and loss from college to marriage. Pritam’s music is another highlight, especially “Ghagra” which has the always beautiful and timeless Madhuri Dixit dancing and reminding the audience how special she is. One caveat, though the soundtrack is really strong with tracks like “Badtameez Dil”, and “Kabira”, it is not as melodious or uniquely catchy as the songs from “Wake Up Sid”. I know, I know! I shouldn’t compare, but I can’t help it! “Yeh Jaawani Hai Deewane” will burn itself into your mind for the time being, is definitely a really fun movie to watch, and beats all the other new releases (so far) hands down. Director Ayan Mukerji is definitely the future of Bollywood, and I for one will be waiting to see what he does next. Until then, I’ll be living it up with my “Badtameez Dil”!

Thums Down - Recent Films that Disappointed :-(
 David
 Director: Bejoy Nambiar  Producer: Bejoy Nambiar
 Music: Modern Mafia, Bramfatura,Prashant Pillai,Remo Fernandes,Anirudh etc  Lyrics: Various
 Starring: Vikram, Neil Nitin Mukesh, Vinay Virmani, Tabu, Lara Dutta, Isha Sharvani
 Genre: Drama  Recommended Audience: General
I was honestly expecting a lot from this film as I had enjoyed director Bejoy Nambiar’s “Shaitan”, but this flawed movie with what could have been a very interesting premise, simply disappoints the viewer with tedium. Ouch! I know, perhaps I am being a bit harsh. Perhaps I got off on the wrong side of the bed today…perhaps not. Look, I love films with a great concept and even enjoy them when the film itself presents the concept in an uneven way, but “David” just doesn’t hold the viewer’s interest for its running time. The one shining star in this film is Neil Nitin Mukesh, who returns to the silver screen after a bit of time. His performance is perhaps the sole reason to see the film. The story focuses on three men named…David (of course). One story is set in 1975, the second in 1999, the third in 2010. Neil Nitin Mukesh is the primary character in the 1975 portion of the film, playing a mob boss protégé to perfection. Other than that, the rest of the film is okay. I wish I could get more excited about this movie, I really do, but unfortunately I just can’t. What’s more upsetting is that the film also has Tabu, but she is wasted in her role. The music is disappointing and all in all it’s best to catch the Neil Nitin Mukesh part of the film either streaming on the net or on DVD. Two thums down!

 Race 2
 Director: Abbas-Mustan  Producer: Ramesh S. Taurani Ronnie Screwvala Siddharth Roy Kapur
 Music: Pritam  Lyrics: Mayur Puri
 Starring: Anil Kapoor, Saif Ali Khan, Deepika Padukone, John Abraham, Jacqueline Fernandez, Ameesha Patel
 Genre: Action  Recommended Audience: General
Gasp! You are probably wondering how I could place “Race 2” in the thums down section?!?! Well, let’s put it this way, I loved the first “Race” and this sequel simply doesn’t hold a candle to the original. Sure, it’s slick and stylish, the cinematography by Ravi Yadav is top notch, and the direction by white safari suit duo Abbas-Mustan Is in their usual efficient manner; however, the film sputters to the finish line on the back of a weak screenplay by Shiraz Ahmed (though the dialogues by Kiran Kotrial are quite good). On top of all that, while the original film had a smash hit soundtrack, the music for “Race 2” is pretty forgettable! It’s like that booze soaked killer party from last night that you can barely remember, but know it had moments of fun. Pritam really let us down with this one, which is especially disappointing considering his excellent compositions in “Barfi”. I want to race, I want to race, I want to RACE too! Sadly, my race gaadi just won’t start with “Race 2”. The story continues right off the first film (which in real time was released five years ago). There are twists and turns for sure and both Saif Ali Khan and John Abraham have a lot of chemistry that is fun to watch. Bipasha Basu is barely in the film, Deepika Padukone gives a great performance as always, Jacqueline Fernandez doesn’t really leave an impression, and Ameesha Patel doesn’t really gel. Finally, if you are going to make a film that is a sequel to the original that had a killer climax like “Race” had, you better come up with an even bigger climax (oh…oh) this time around! Stroll, don’t race to see “Race 2”. One and half Thums down!

 Joker
Arre yaar! No amount of Johnny Walker Red or Black Label can make this “Joker” of a film paisa vasool in any way. The dictionary defines the word joker as: “a person who jokes in an obnoxious manner”. That’s the best way to describe this film. What was director Shirish Kunder thinking or smoking for that manner? Bhai, let’s make a film about aliens….and a village….and pelvic thrusting! Smash hit bhai! Smash hit! After watching this film, I truly felt like I took a trip to hell or Paglapur and back. The story is completely nonsensical. Take “Koi Mil Gaya” and mash it up with equal parts “Lagaan” with a splash of “Swades”, but with quarter of the entertainment and you get this completely “THUMS DOWN” film. It’s no wonder that Akshay Kumar did nothing to promote the film, he had to have known how bad it turned out to be, though why he picked this film to star in is anyone’s guess. Certainly it’s not due to the “excellent” screenplay. Perhaps as a mark of desperation, Shirish Kunder engineered the “accidental” controversy of the song, “I want Fakhta you” (which was eventually changed to the more pc “I want just you”). It’s about the only thing that got people interested in the movie. Sonakshi Sinha is wasted, as is Shreya Talpade. The storyline focuses on a village lost in time, Pagalpur. Founded by the inmates of an insane asylum, the village doesn’t appear on any maps. Somehow we have aliens mixed into this…and really, shall I go on? Please, please, if you have any sense of reason, avoid this film at all costs. Not even multiple glasses of alcohol can save this film. Watch it at your own risk! After seeing this, I truly felt, “fakhta-ed”.

 Bittoo Boss
 Director: Supavitra Babul  Producer: Kumar Mangat Pathak; Abhishek Pathak
 Music: Raghav Sachar  Lyrics: Kumaar, Luv Ranjan; Aseem Ahmed Abbasi
 Starring: Pulkit Samrat; Amita Pathak
 Genre: Comedy  Recommended Audience: General
What to say about this film? I am rarely at a loss for words (as my lengthy TUTD diatribes can attest), yet this film leaves me totally flabbergasted (now there’s a word you don’t hear every day)! “Bittoo Boss” is like an itchy rash that won’t go away for a couple of hours. The film could have been a smart, funny small romantic comedy, but instead is just grating to sit through. The direction by Supavitra Babul is so-so, and nothing out of the ordinary. The screenplay by the director and Gautam Mehra rings hollow. The music by the once promising, Raghav Sachar is so mundane that it drags the film even further down the drain. The story itself focuses on Bittoo (played by small screen star Pulkit Samrat of “Kyunki Saas Bhi Kabhi Bahu Thi”), the videographer that everyone wants at their wedding. The girl of his dreams Is Mrinalani (Amitha Palak who is wasted here). Bittoo will do anything to prove he is the man of his girl’s dreams. Honestly, I thought the film would have been much better, I usually enjoy films like these, and who doesn’t love weddings? Yet, from the first reel to the last, I kept hoping for something that would make this worth watching. Though the lead pair try their best, with a particularly strong performance by Pulkit Samrat, the film unfortunately sinks the both of them. “Bittoo Boss” is definitely not a career notch on anyone’s belt. Thums way down for this one.

 Bheja Fry 2
 PB Rating: 4.0 out of 10  Public Rating (by 403 unique users): 5.13
 Director: Sagar Ballary  Producer: Mukul Deora
 Music: Ishq Bector, Sneha Khanwalkar, Sagar Desai  Lyrics: Shree D, Sonny Ravan, Shakeel Azmi
 Starring: Vinay Pathak, Kay Kay Menon, Minissha Lamba, Suresh Menon, Amole Gupte
 Genre: Comedy  Recommended Audience: General
I love Vinay Pathak (in a buddy kind of way…high five dude), I really do. He’s a great actor and a true comedic talent. His work in “Bheja Fry” was truly sublime as his portrayal of wannabe singer Bharat Bhushan (the loveable buffoon) literally wormed its way into your mind. His scenes with Rajat Kapoor (who excelled as the cheating louse with the painful backache….Ranjeet Thadani) were an immersive experience to watch. The core of that superlative film were these two characters and the chemistry that they shared.

Unfortunately, in an effort to make the sequel bigger and better (supersized), Writer/Director Sagar Ballary (who also wrote/directed the first film), drops Rajat Kapoor and loses half the chemistry that made the first film what it was….a cult classic.

Instead in his place, we get a story that tries to tie into the current singing competition zeitgeist as Bhushan wins a singing competition and promptly heads off onto a 3-Day cruise. This time around Kay Kay Menon (as Ajit Talwar) is the lucky (?) soul who gets some one on one time with Bhushan. Oh, along the way we have Amole Gupta, Minissha Lamba, and Suresh Menon woven throughout the plot. Yet, the whole thing lacks charm. It’s just not….funny. Oh, you want to laugh so bad, you want to welcome back brother Bhushan with a pat on the back and a smile on your face, but this time around Bhushan is let down by the one weakness that seems to infect many Bollywood films….a weak script. I imagine that it must be difficult to write a follow up to such a quirky movie as the first “Bheja Fry”, but perhaps Sagar Ballary would have been better off keeping Rajat Kapoor’s character and setting the storyline in Mumbai…all the while keeping the story at street level. Beautiful scenery does not a movie make, and just because the film is a sequel, doesn’t always mean it has to be bigger. It just means it has to be better. Watch the film for a few chuckles, and then watch the first one to truly be entertained.


Previous Weeks Thums Up - Thums Down »
 • `Why "Krrish" 3 wasn`t so super!`
 • ‘Besharam’ is no ‘Dabangg’!
 • `Shuddh Desi Romance` Sheds New Light on Love!
 • Ranbir and Deepika ‘s chemistry burns up the screen in ‘Yeh Jaawani Hai Deewane’
 • `David` disappoints, while `Race 2` falters to the finish line!
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