Sunday, November 13, 2016

Rock On 2: Movie Review

Rock On 2: Staggers to Match the ‘Magik’ of its Past!
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Reviewer’s Thumb Mark

While watching ‘Rock On 2’ one can feel the colossal impact of the 2008 ‘Rock On’ on you and how much you start missing this time the magic they exhibited as a band in the previous movie. I tried hard to disconnect my mind from the previous Rock On to watch and savour Rock On 2 with a fresh perspective but I failed miserably. May be because I found it difficult not to compare the brilliance of the past with the mediocrity of the present film. I am not talking about the actors but about the script and the music. Both staggers to match the magic of the band Magik had offered us in the past.

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The escapist and the emotionally vulnerable Aditya Shroff finds his solace in a nondescript village ‘Uminuh’ in Meghalaya from the busy metropolitan city Mumbai to forgive himself and forget an unpleasant and tragic incident that rocked his peaceful and beautiful life as a Rock star. But as hard he tries to forget the past, the more the incident haunts him as a nightmare every day. His philanthropy and new love of forming a peasant’s cooperative to sell their produce at a better deal by avoiding middle men doesn’t go well with the local power brokers. He soon finds himself and the villagers at loggerheads with the ‘Farmer’s Welfare Board’ and its Chief.

Aditya’s other band members like KD and Joe Mascarenhas have found their own means to meet their ends. KD makes music compositions to other music companies who he feels understands music less and business more. Joe is a judge for a musical reality show on Television and also runs an elite pub. He too finds himself compromised with the current reality of reality show’s obsession with TRPs and theatrics on stage.

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Now, the question is what’s new in Rock On 2? The answer is Jiah Sharma (Shraddha Kapoor) and Uday (Shashank Arora) two youngsters who are passionate about music. Jiah has a legacy of having a renowned musician Pandit Vibhooti (Kumud Mishra) as her father and also a personal tragedy hard to forget in their life. Uday is looking for an opportunity to get a foothold in the music industry and for this he has left no stone unturned. The moment the duo becomes the part of the erstwhile band ‘Magik’ the past starts haunting the founders of the band. Rock On 2 has some talented actors like Shahana Goswami as Joe’s wife Debbie, Prachi Desai as Aditya’s Wife Sakshi, Kumud Mishra as Pandit Vibhooti and Shashank Arora the Titli guy as Uday. Unfortunately, the filmmakers fail to take advantage of these actors potential to its credit. And I feel it’s a loss for the viewers. The major drawback of this movie is that it doesn’t do justice completely to its sub plots which it banked to weave a story different from the previous one. Pandit Vibhooti and Jiah’s personal tragedy, the villagers of Uminuh and their hardships and the changing equation between Aditya and his wife could have been dealt better but maybe I guess that the makers would have feared that the movie would become completely a non-musical drama.

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Vishal Dadlani, Usha Utup, Kit Shandpliang and Pynsuklin Syiemlong of the Summersalt Band had added some excitement to the otherwise insipid movie. The ‘Hoi Kie/Chalo Chalo’ is one of the high moment of the movie. Hope the concert organized by Magik for a cause lasted a bit longer, the rest what the movie have is lackluster music and lyrics.

What makes Adita leave Uminuh and revive the band again? Why and how Magik as a band organize a concert at Shillong which catches the fancy of music lovers across the country and results into a movement for a cause?  Does the friends stand united as in the past or fall prey to their own troubles and egos and fall apart? Does Aditya get redemption from his past? These are some of the questions I would like you to find answers to as viewers in a nearby theater. Rock On 2 is not so bad. Actually, it deserves to be watched once but please do not compare the sequel with the previous one.

Life Connoisseur Movie Rating: 2.75/5

Cast: Farhan Akhtar (Aditya Shrofff), Arjun Rampal (Joe Mascarenhas), Purab Kohli (KD), Shraddha Kapoor (Jiah Sharma), Prachi Desai (Sakshi), Shashank Arora (Uday), Shahana Goswami (Debbie), Kumud Mishra (Pandit Vibhooti)

Genre: Music Drama

Director: Farhan Akhtar, Ritesh Sidhwani

Producers: Arun Pandey, Fox Star Studios

Written by: Abhishek Kapoor, Pubali Chaudhari

Music by: Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy

Cinematography: Marc Konckx

Edited by: Anand Subaya

Production Company: Excel Entertainment

Distributor: Eros International

Release Date: 11th November, 2016

Duration: 139 Minutes

Language: Hindi 

Friday, November 4, 2016

Ventilator : Movie Review

Ventilator: Priyanka Chopra’s Regional Gem!
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Reviewer’s Thumb Mark

Priyanka Chopra dons many hats and she ensures that she excels in all that she does. Her multifaceted approach to entertainment has made her come up this time with her debut Marathi film ‘Ventilator’.  Daddy’s little girl, PC has dedicated this film in the memory of her late father Dr. Ashok Chopra and in this venture her mother, Madhu Chopra has joined hands as a co-producer. There are many stalwarts in this movie and behind the movie like Rajesh Mapuskar the man who directed “Ferrari ki Sawaari is the director here too, Ashutosh Gowariker as Raja, Jitendra Joshi (Prasanna), Sulbha Arya (Manda), Sukanya Kulkarni Mone (Sarika), Viju Khote (Shirish Appa), Satish Alekar, Deepak Shirke (Atma Dhadke), and Boman Irani as a doctor stands out on screen as actors.  The movie has an ensemble of more than 116 artistes who collectively offers us a complete family drama with a right mix of emotions and rib tickling situational humour.

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Ventilator a medical device for helping a patient breathe becomes an indication of a patient’s critical stage and in general such a situation creates ample level of anxiety and emotions with in a family. Here in this movie one of the patriarch of the Kamerkar clan who is fondly called as Gaju Kaka is on the ventilator and the whole Kamerkar family from distant towns, villages and abroad has gathered in the hospital for his speedy recovery. When we watch the movie, we start realizing that it is not just Gaju Kaka who is on the ventilator but the whole family and its relationships are on the ventilator. It is so easy to relate with each Kamerkar family member because we have either seen them in other families or we have one such piece in our clan.

Gaju Kaka’s hospitalization and that too at the most awaited Ganeshotsav around the corner upsets the festive plans of the family members and dampens the festive fervor. Though the family members are found to regard and love the ailing Gaju Kaka but it is also interesting to observe that every one of them has their own agenda to settle when they meet each other. And amidst all these happenings there are some who are aghast to find how people become intentionally and unintentionally self-centered and self-obsessed that makes the audience to watch through the glass window see their own relationships and it state of condition on the ventilator.

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The film ‘Ventilator’ takes us through how parenting and its impact on early childhood can affect the evolution of personality of our children. It also portrays how small tiffs, misunderstandings and different point of views about pursuing professions and interests when not handled at the right moment then and there can become an ever widening, hard to resolve conflicts between parents and their children. Ventilator’s whole message is conveyed to us majorly through two characters one Raja (Ashutosh Gowariker) the nephew of the ailing patriarch and two Prasanna (Jitendra Joshi) an aspiring politician who is also the son of the man on the ventilator. Ashutosh Gowariker as a film maker in this movie wins your heart. His character depicts how success can make you the most sought after person in the family but still success can’t bring you close to the most important person in your life ‘Your father. If success place you on the highest pedestal of your life and when you look down if we fail to find our dear ones to cheer us then does that success mean anything to us? Sukanya Kulkarni as Sarika the daughter of the ailing patriarch is outstanding. She moves you through her performance that portrays the bond and love between the father and a daughter. Priyanka Chopra tells Raja that fathers are special. Dr. Satish Alekar also known for his much applauded play “Mahanirvan’ which he wrote, plays a pivotal role as the father of Raja and leaves us teary eyed for the film’s dramatic and brilliant climax with a wonderful learning and experience as a key take away of the film. Jitender Joshi is the man of the film, who through his role as an over ambitious politician and a son who has a heavy emotional baggage which he want to settle with his father has given a brilliant performance. This man needs a big applause.

Director Rajesh Mapuskar has brilliantly etched out each character and every single character has an importance in the film. With such a large ensemble of actors there were all possibilities to get confused to understand who is who in the film but hats off to the filmmaker he ensures we relate with each of his character and understand where they come from. Priyanka Chopra has an interesting cameo in the film and has already generated an emotional chord with her listeners and audience by singing the promotional Marathi song “Baba” for her film Ventilator which she has dedicated to her late father. The film’s another song “Ya Re Ya Saare Ya’ also adds to the beauty of the film.

As one of the characters in the film aptly says – “The beauty of the Indian family is that they stick together despite their differences”. But the question is – don’t we lose out some important relations and bonding because of this bickering? Go and watch this beautifully made film ‘Ventilator’ with your whole family. Please don’t forget to take your elders along with you too.

 Life Connoisseur Movie Rating: 3.5/5

Cast: Ashutosh Gowarikar (Raja), Jitendra Joshi (Prasanna Kamerkar), Satish Alekar (father of Raja), (Sulbh Arya (Manda), Sukanya Kulkarni (Sarika), Viju Khote (Shirish Appa), Deepak Shirke (Aatma Dhadke, Boman Irani (Doctor), Priyanka Chopra (Cameo)
Genre: Family Drama
Director: Rajesh Mapuskar
Producer: Siddharth Roy Kapoor, Sunita Gowariker
Written by: Priyanka Chopra & Madhu Chopra
Screenplay: Rajesh Mapuskar
Dialogues: Rajesh Mapuskar
Music by: Rohan Rohan
Lyrics: Mano Yadav, Shantaram Mapuskar
Cinematography: Savita Singh
Edited by: Rameshwar Bhagat
Production Company: Purple Pebble Pictures, Magij Pictures, Zee Studios
Release Date: 4th November, 2016
Duration: 141 Minutes
Language: Marathi