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Indian Film Reviews

Rangoon – A Complex, Intricate Yet Incomplete Tapestry

Vishal Bhardwaj’s Rangoon is a metafilm dealing with the business of film-making coupled with a love triangle between a rich producer, an action queen and a soldier at the backdrop of World War II. The film is replete with eloquent landscapes, enough tension and commendable performances from the lead characters. A Silhouette review.

Rangoon – A Complex, Intricate Yet Incomplete Tapestry
Rangoon – A Complex, Intricate Yet Incomplete Tapestry
Vishal Bhardwaj's Rangoon is a metafilm dealing with the business of film-making coupled with a love triangle between a rich producer, an action queen and a soldier...
Lady of the Lake: Intermingling Politics and Fantasy
Lady of the Lake: Intermingling Politics and Fantasy
Loktak Lairembee is the debut feature of Haobam Paban Kumar who hails from the north Eastern Indian state of Manipur. Set on a group of fishing families who live...
Devi - What if Devdas was a Woman?
Devi – What if Devdas was a Woman?
“What if Devdas were a woman?” is the tagline of Rick Basu’s Devi . Based on Sarat Chandra Chattopadhyay’s classic novel which has been filmed umpteen times...
Antarleen and Kahaani 2 – Polarised Yet Competent Thrillers
Antarleen and Kahaani 2 – Polarised Yet Competent Thrillers
At the very end of the year, two different thrillers have hit the screens – Kahaani 2 in Hindi and Antarleen in Bengali. The films are different among...
Postmaster Review – The Tagore Connection is Superfluous
Postmaster Review – The Tagore Connection is Superfluous
Postmaster marks the directorial debut of Srijon Bardhan. Parts of the film are engrossing though at times the narrative is too loose to sustain interest. The film...
A mother-daughter moment of Nil Battey Sannata
Nil Battey Sannata Review: Be What You Want to Be
Nil Battey Sannata is a well-knit, intelligent film with witty dialogues and excellently fleshed out characters. It is not the mother-daughter relationship that strikes after...
Shankhachil – Soppy, Syrupy, Sentimental and Sad
Shankhachil – Soppy, Syrupy, Sentimental and Sad
Goutam Ghose’s Shankhachil won the National Award for the Best Bengali film of 2015. The film is a tribute to the courage and conviction of the human spirit that expresses...
Raja Sen’s Maya Mridanga
Raja Sen’s Maya Mridanga is Set on a High Pitch
Raja Sen’s latest film Maya Mridanga which adapts from an original novel by noted writer Syed Mustafa Siraj, restores the history of an old folk performance art form that...
Century Gowda in a scene from Thithi
Comical Mirror to a Vivacious Village Vaudeville
Skeptical as to what newness a Kannada film could offer, S Viswanath, is bowled over by the enterprisingly chiseled and excellently crafted Thithi, a black comedy by debutant...
The poster of Chauranga
Chauranga – A Metaphor For Escape
Chauranga is a metaphor for the illusory city which might have any name and might exist in any part of India. It is to this unknown India that debutant director Bikas...
The sensitive and delicate Tere mere sapne ab ek rang hain encapsulates love and dreams, empathy and companionship in every frame.
Guide: The Story of Ordinary People Leading Extraordinary Lives
Fifty years ago, Guide 1965 proved that in the male-dominated film industry, feminism and women’s liberation can shine if handled sensitively. The film's music...
All the World’s a Stage: Tamasha and Prem Ratan Dhan Payo
All the World’s a Stage: Tamasha and Prem Ratan Dhan Payo
Tamasha and Prem Ratan Dhan Payo have similarities - both films revolve around stage performances, both films involve a double role for the hero, both films ask whether the...
Onyo Opala
Onyo Opala – An Unusual Perspective on the Gay Identity
Satarupa Sanyal’s latest film Onyo Opala is an interesting film when it looks into homosexuality but fails overall as it tries to crunch too many issues within its narrative....
Abby Sen poster
Abby Sen and Time Travel
Atanu Sen’s recent film Abby Sen is about Time Travel to 1980s Kolkata. A film review.
Rajkahini – A Valiant Effort
Rajkahini – A Valiant Effort
Srijit Mukherjee’s latest film Rajkahini traces back to history and narrates one of the many gruesome incidents that had happened during the Parition of Bengal in 1947....
4.	Rituparna Sengupta in the last film - Telephone
Teen Kahon – Three Dimensions Of The Obsessive Mind
Is obsession a psychological disorder? Or, is it a temporary infatuation with a given person or thing which fades either with time or with a new subject to be obsessed with....
Tom Alter and Oorvazi Irani in The Path Of Zarathustra
The Parsi Story – A Learning Experience
Oorvazi Irani’s debut feature The Path of Zarathustra is a pleasant surprise especially for those who are intrigued by the changes and the differences that are constantly...
Was it a suicide, a murder or an accident – the death of Kheya in Natoker Mato
Theatre and Life: Natoker Mato
In 1977 during a film shooting, a young woman of 34 died, death due to drowning. Mired in mystery, it was not known for sure whether it was a suicide, a murder or an accident....
The poster of Brothers
Brothers versus Warrior: Why Brothers Fails to be a Knock-Out
Brothers is a Hindi cinema which has close semblance with the Hollywood film Warrior. The article looks into where Brothers is unique and why in spite of some flourishes it...
Ek Nodir Galpo: The Name of a River
Ek Nodir Galpo: The Name of a River
From a simple story of a motherless daughter and her doting father, filled with the pranks that evolve from the naughtiness of the little girl to the motherly care of an adolescent,...
Anubrato Bhalo Aacho? The Caregiver’s Tragedy
Anubrato Bhalo Aacho? The Caregiver’s Tragedy
Partho Sen’s Anubrato Bhalo Aacho is more about the loneliness and the growing sense of alienation and distancing the caregivers suffer from and less about the clinical...
Baahubali and Bhallaladeva – an epic rivalry
Baahubali: A Potential Game-Changer
S S Rajamouli’s Baahubali-the beginning is a narrative of betrayal and revenge, the saga of triumph of the good over the evil. Set in a mammoth canvas never seen in Indian...
Between the Times – A Rare Experience: Asa Jaoar Majhe Review
Between the Times – A Rare Experience: Asa Jaoar Majhe Review
Aditya Vikram Sengupta’s Asa Jaoar Majhe (Labour of love) is an exceptional film – not because it doesn’t have any dialogues, but more so since it treads a different...
Hamari Adhuri Kahani -  A Story Best Left Untold
Hamari Adhuri Kahani – A Story Best Left Untold
Hamari Adhuri Kahani has outstanding cinematography and fine performances. But in trying to pack too much layers the film eventually loses its track.
Dil Dhadakne Do: A Triumph of Casting
Dil Dhadakne Do: A Triumph of Casting
The largest of the societal issues the film deconstructs is the attitudes towards women. Interestingly, while the situation for women is established as being difficult, the...
Family Album –  A Few Shades Of Grey
Family Album – A Few Shades Of Grey
Family Album entertains in a certain way but leaves a lot of questions behind. A review by Shoma A Chatterji.
Jahnu Barua’s Halodhia Choraye Baodhan Khai : A Look Back
Jahnu Barua’s Halodhia Choraye Baodhan Khai : A Look Back
Jahnu Barua's benchmark film Halodhia Choraye Baodhan Khai (The Catastrophe, 1987) of 120 minute duration , winner of International and National crowns, rare feats...
Jogajog – Difficult to Translate
Jogajog – Difficult to Translate
The original story triggers more sympathy for Kumudini but the film somehow manages to slant the sympathy to favour Madhusudan which is a drastic shift.
Anurag Kashyap’s Bombay Velvet – Falling Short of Expectations
Anurag Kashyap’s Bombay Velvet – Falling Short of Expectations
In an effort to make a film that combines the sensibilities of the American crime drama with the Indian social and personal drama, Kashyap created a text that is flawed both...
Uma is young and she is an instrument to pacify the lust of the local school master Nabin.
Suttee: Retelling the Myth
Analayzing Aparna Sen's Bengali movie 'Suttee' and its protagonist, Uma, played by Shabana Azmi, and connecting the film to the history, tradition and Hindu myth of the Sati....
Margarita with a Straw: True Taste of Life
Margarita with a Straw: True Taste of Life
A refreshing review of the film 'Margarita with a Straw' by Amrita Dasgupta where she analyses the deftly portrayed character of a disabled young woman and the various epiphanies...
Piku Enthralls
Piku Enthralls
Piku is like a treat of golgappas in itself. It is real and hence refreshing.
A Peek Into the World of Kadambari and Charulata
A Peek Into the World of Kadambari and Charulata
Champa Srinivasan analyses Suman Ghosh's film Kadambari while also reflecting on the character of Charulata in Ray's classic film adaptation of Tagore's novella Nashtoneer....
Ek Din Pratidin – Mrinal Sen’s Indictment on Patriarchy
Ek Din Pratidin – Mrinal Sen’s Indictment on Patriarchy
Ek Din Pratidin offers a deep insight into the difference in treatment of and attitude towards men and women among the urban Indian middle-class tilted against women...
Kaushik Ganguly’s Chotoder Chobi: A Giant Leap for Cinema Lovers
Kaushik Ganguly’s Chotoder Chobi: A Giant Leap for Cinema Lovers
Kaushik Ganguly’s latest release Chotoder Chhobi (2015) deals with the predicaments of the dwarves or midgets. Apparently labelled ‘abnormal’ due to their incongruity...
Punjab 1984 Review: About Wounds, Emotions And Simplicity
Punjab 1984 Review: About Wounds, Emotions And Simplicity
There is no condoning of terrorism in the movie but it simply tells the story of a youth who lived for his pride and how he got manipulated into the act of terrorism.
Born Into Brothels
(Pic courtesy Worldette.com)
Born into Brothels: Looking Back at a Gem in Documentary Filmmaking
The portrayal of artistry and talent of the children in the film, as reflected in their works of photography, critics have said, have not only served as examples of remarkable...
Watch Haider for Shahid, Kashmir And Humanity
Watch Haider for Shahid, Kashmir And Humanity
Shahid Kapoor as Haider in the second half, etches an unforgettable performance. The support cast are brilliant, but the real protagonist of the movie is Kashmir.
Thanks Maa: An Innocent Conviction, An Insensitive Society
Thanks Maa: An Innocent Conviction, An Insensitive Society
Thanks Maa is a superb story of 2 days in the life of an orphaned homeless boy and how his life changes, when he battles to help an infant reach its mother.
Million Dollar Arm Review: Emotions Win In Deja Vu Sports Drama
Million Dollar Arm Review: Emotions Win In Deja Vu Sports Drama
Million Dollar Arm does not fall in the bracket of exceptionally good sports drama but its running length of 124 min laced with brilliant performances will make for a good...
Hawaa Hawaai Review: Ek-Lava And His Wings
Hawaa Hawaai Review: Ek-Lava And His Wings
Amole Gupte's Hawaa Hawaai is one of the most innocent films I have seen in years.
Pyaasa: Pristine Poetry On Celluloid
Pyaasa: Pristine Poetry On Celluloid
On Feb 19, 1957, Guru Dutt's classic Pyaasa was released. Read the review of this epoch making movie, which Time magazine had included in its list of 100 best films.
Guide - A Mortal Man Became An Immortal Institution
Guide – A Mortal Man Became An Immortal Institution
Guide starts with a dashing Dev Anand (Raju) walking out of jail in the outskirts of Udaipur.
Sadanander Mela: A Story Of Humanity
Sadanander Mela: A Story Of Humanity
The hero of Sadanander Mela is undoubtedly the story – a tale of rudderless characters who bond together on the basis of simple, uncomplicated humanity.
The Lunchbox: Meeting Point Of Two Bland and Forlorn Entities
The Lunchbox: Meeting Point Of Two Bland and Forlorn Entities
The Lunchbox is an amazing film, a highly commendable and deft cinematic creativity.
Swet Patharer Thala explores the prejudices society holds on to for the Hindu widow even in circumstances that appear modern and contemporary.
Revisiting Swet Patharer Thala: Woman, Widowhood And Work
Swet Patharer Thala presents a different portrayal of the working woman in post-Colonial Bengali cinema that has no feminist slogan to raise. Yet, it raises several important...
3 Idiots – All Izz Well
3 Idiots – All Izz Well
3 Idiots is not just a story of 3 engineering students; it is story of every being that takes birth on this planet. The movie also presents the struggles of life that people...
Aranyer Din Ratri: Holding a Mirror to the 21st Century Generation
Aranyer Din Ratri: Holding a Mirror to the 21st Century Generation
Aranyer Din Ratri (Days and Nights in the Forest), the 1969 masterpiece by Satyajit Ray, looks at the vagaries and vicissitudes of the “new generation” then.
Amar Prem - an unusual love story
Amar Prem: True Love Blossoms Without Barriers
Amar Prem portrays a pure and selfless form of love which happens to take shape and grow in adverse situations and places.
Garam Hawa represents the predicament of one such family of Agra.
Garam Hawa: India’s Living Dead
The title “Garam Hawa” is introduced in the scene where Salim Mirza is in conversation with the tonga wala says, “Kaise hare bhare daskath kat rahe hai in hawao mein”,...
Modes of Storytelling: Tapan Sinha’s Kshudita Pashan (1961)
Modes of Storytelling: Tapan Sinha’s Kshudita Pashan (1961)
The film uses an unrequited romance, an attempted suicide, a rather tearful separation and suggestions of an eternity of waiting on behalf of the female ghost.
Playing Passion Over Penance -  Re-viewing Chokher Bali (1902-2002)
Playing Passion Over Penance – Re-viewing Chokher Bali (1902-2002)
In the film, observed some critics, ‘one misses the dignity and self respect’ which went into the making of Binodini in the novel.
Deep Jele Jai has survived the onslaughts of time, technology and evolution to remain one of the best films directed by Asit Sen
Deep Jele Jai: Representation Of The Physically And Mentally Challenged
Deep Jele Jai has survived the onslaughts of time, technology and evolution to remain one of the best films directed by Asit Sen marking Suchitra Sen in one of her unforgettable...
In Ghosh’s Noukadubi Hemnalini’s father (Dhritiman) is much more self-assured and articulate then the Annadababu of the novel.
Tagore’s Noukadubi And Rituparno’s Inspiration: Interrogating Marriage And Home
The film's real power, however, lies in its ability to mould the text and serve contemporary cinematic purposes where the characters are much modernized, articulate and credible....
Alo (2003)
Cast: Rituparna Sengupta, Abhishek Chattejee, Soumili Biswas
(Pic: Youtube)
Narrative Of Tagore’s Songs Used In Tarun Majumdar’s Alo (2003)
While the plot follows the story about Alo as the traditional narrative of causality, Majumdar etches out a thematic quotient to the narrative of Tagore’s songs and poetry....
In late 60's when feminism was taking shape in Bengal, with this contextually primed, well-built story the director was already one step ahead.
On Streer Patra
Standing on a lonesome, vast seashore of Bay of Bengal, she finally declares that she's never going to come back to get confined again in that boxed and prejudiced life. ...
Ghosh’s Binodini does not repent as against Tagore’s Binodini who leaves for Kashi apologizing to Mahendra and Ashalata, thereby eliminating the anxiety for the masterless widow.  Ghosh’s Binodini is not punished.
Chokher Bāli: Unleashing Forbidden Passions
Ghosh makes a remarkable departure in his own reinterpretation of the novel in the recent film version of Chokher Bali.
The music-loving, clairvoyant Prashanta has a premonition of the disaster that is going to strike his father.
Satyajit Ray’s Sakha Prosakha: A Critic of Contemporary Ethics
Ray’s preoccupation with truth, beauty and goodness is destined to survive because it essentially presents a human programme, man’s perpetual struggle to become human....
Bollywood And The Diaspora: Namastey London
Bollywood And The Diaspora: Namastey London
Namastey London offers intriguing insights into the hypocrisy of NRIs, who raise their children as products of their new environment.
15 Park Avenue: Mithi’s Magic Mind – A Human and Scientific Exploration
15 Park Avenue: Mithi’s Magic Mind – A Human and Scientific Exploration
I believe, the joy derived from the strong sense of commitment is the main factor that binds the two apparently different persons together. Therefore, as I still go on repeatedly...
The Moor Recontextualized Othello to Omkara
The Moor Recontextualized Othello to Omkara
In the play Othello stands alone, while in the Hindi film adaptation Omkara is given a full household. Instead of Venice, Omkara is set against the milieu of political and...
The Colours of Language and Legalities: Reviewing Gulaal
The Colours of Language and Legalities: Reviewing Gulaal
The best part about Gulaal is of course the script, that it also lets you down in some parts especially towards the end is another matter and that is also mostly because your...

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