Top five Hindi movies of 2012

As the entire country celebrated 100 years of Indian Cinema, I joined the party on my discretion and I am happy to figure out some exceptional qualities reflecting lately in Indie movies. The fact that there will be senseless movies in India and “keep your minds at home” comedies is almost accepted country wide. However, the number of quality films produced in India does show a formidable change in trend. Nonetheless the change is positive as well.

Are we missing the rain dances then? Or should we watch more Kahaani-s (real stories) to ensure the establishment of superior motion picture activities in our country, known for its rich cultural values.

I would like to share the top five Bollywood movies according to my perception and the basic reasons why these endeavors should be highlighted. The director of an exceptional movie does play an important role in bringing out life from a story. My list of top five Hindi movies -2012 reflects movies that did justice to the art of film making.

  1. Kahaani
Parambrata and Vidya Balan in Kahaani
Parambrata and Vidya Balan in Kahaani

Genre: Thriller.

Released on: 9th March, 2012.

Writer-Director Sujoy Ghosh took the entire country by surprise along with a handful of Bengali theater actors and one Vidya Balan at the very beginning of the last year. The promising story and an uncanny ending marked the establishment of a new age thriller movie where the audiences were left awe-struck. Nawazuddin Siddiqui (as Khan), Parambrata Chatterjee (as Satyaki/Rana), Saswata Chatterjee (as Bob Biswas) and Vidya Bagchi (deliberately as Vidya Balan) took the story to a different level. Sincerely waiting for Kahaani-2.

USP: Kolkata, Durga puja, Vidya Balan and Bob Biswas!

  1. Vicky Donor
Ayushmaan and Yami in Vicky Donor!
Ayushmaan and Yami in Vicky Donor!

Genre: Comedy/Romance

Released on: 20th April, 2012.

Director Shoojit Sircar made this film with sleepless nights with the fear of rejection as first-time Producer John Abrahim backed him up with muscular enthusiasm. However, the youth section of the society welcomed this fresh story with open hands. The story of a man who serves the society by donating sperms is not on air very often! Ayushmann Khurrana’s chemistry with the doctor Anu Kapoor and his love interest Yami Gupta tickles the right emotions at the right time. The freshness of the story and the approach of the film maker along with the music and crisp dialogues make Vicky Donor worth watching!

USP: Ayushmann Khurrana-the Singer, Anu Kapoor and the music!

  1. Gangs of Wasseypur
A still from the movie...
A still from the movie…

Genre: Action/Crime

Released on: 2nd August 2012.

The story set in the remote village of Wasseypur stands out from most of the action crime thrillers of the year and earned compliments from even the best of film critics of the country. The director, Anurag Kashyap with his candid story telling talent and actors like Manoj Bajpayee, Richa Chadda and Nawazuddin Siddiqui turned the dice to convert a good cinema into an exceptional piece of film art! Dialogues with rural accent mixed with unmatched cameos from the actor uplifted the story of a gang to an entirely different level.

USP: Manoj Bajpayee, Nawazuddin Siddiqui and Cinematography.

  1. Barfi
Ranbir in a still from the movie
Ranbir in a still from the movie

Genre: Drama/ Comedy.

Released on: 14th September.

What adjective would best describe a movie like Barfi? I have no idea! Anurag Basu sewed the movie with pearls from his heart and strings from his brain to an utmost level where perfection was not very far. Ranbir Kapoor doing is Chaplin tribute role, Priyanka Chopra (as Jhilmil) acting as an autistic girl and Ileana D’Cruz (as Shruti) portraying a Bong housewife excelled. All the characters were perfectly placed and the movie also saw the last act from veteran actor Haradhan Bannerjee (as Daju). Barfi certainly celebrated love and life and rightly represented India in the Oscars! Or did we have better movies?

USP: Music by Pritam, Acting by Ranbir Kapoor, Priyanka Chopra and Anurag’s visual metaphors!

  1. Talaash
Amir and Kareena in a still from Talaash!
Amir and Kareena in a still from Talaash!

Genre: Mystery Thriller

Released on: 30th November.

Reema Kagti’s Talaash is a genuine mystery thriller that took me by surprise. There were instances that still make me feel how good a movie Talaash was. The more than one time watch of the movie also divulged some of the social commentary that the director conveyed in this movie. Amir Khan, Kareena Kapoor and Rani Mukherjee were spectacular in this movie as were the other actors including Nawazuddin Siddiqui (as Tehmur). The crisp dialogues, mesmerizing music and astonishing cinematography certainly help the standard of the movie. The stand out performance of the entire team to create something so uncanny yet so real made me enlist Talaash over a few other movies!

USP: Kareena Kapoor, Amir Khan, opening (montage) of the movie with the song, “Muskaan Jhooti Hai”.

Epilogue:

I enjoyed the last year as some quality movies like Shanghai, Paan Singh Tomar, Chittagong and English Vinglish hit the theaters helping audiences to munch upon something better than over-priced pop corns and obesity catalyzing cold drinks! Although these movies never did business as lucrative as Khiladi 786, Housefull 2 or like any of those typical masala movies, they made an honest effort to uplift the stinking standard of Indian mainstream movies where commercialization is nothing but an excuse to make mindless films! Now do we understand what is still wrong with Indian Cinema?

Signing off from the desk of my-motion-picture till a quality picture gets resonating reflection!

P.S: Links are useful read, go to the top and follow the relevant ones if you wish!

 

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Insect Lover DAD…

While playing in the backyard, Little TinKu kills a honeybee.

HONEY bee
HONEY bee

His father sees him killing the honeybee and angrily says, “No honey for you for one month!” :X

Later that afternoon,

TinKu’s dad catches him tearing the wings off a butterfly.

BUTTER fly
BUTTER fly

That’s it! No butter for you for one month!” says his dad.

Later that evening as TinKu’s mother cooks dinner, a cockroach run across the kitchen floor.

She jumps and stamps on it with her slippers, and then looks up to find Little TinKu and her husband watching her.

Little TinKu looks at his father and says, “Are you going to tell her, Dad, or do you want me to?

Top five Bengali films -2012

Some of us thought we will not make it to 2013. Some of us were hopeful enough to plan and fabricate new proposals for the fresh year. I was watching movies all the year round. (*Laughs!)

For the audience in Bengal who express their happiness and sorrows in a language which is the second sweetest in the world, the last year was quite eventful in terms of quality motion picture production. The audience of the state and the film industry is yielding money in good work and that is the happier part of the story. I would like to feature top five Bengali movies of 2012 in this presentation from my-motion-picture.

1)      Hemlock Society

Die if you want.. please don't promote...
Die if you want.. please don’t promote…

 Genre: Drama

Released on: 22nd June, 2012.

A very different story line where the protagonist runs an institute training aspiring candidate to execute their right to euthanasia! Writer/Director Srijit Mukherjee in his third venture after Autograph (A tribute to Satyajit Ray ) and Baishey Shrabon teamed up with Parambrata Chatterjee, Koel Mallik, Rupa Ganguly, Dipankar Dey and some wonderful actors to tell this unconvincingly true story. If you managed to miss the show, make sure you watch this as you are still alive in 2013!

USP: unique story, crisp dialogue, music by Anupam Roy, Photography and Parambrata’s acting!

2)      Muktodhara

Nigel Akara exclusive still from Muktodhara
Nigel Akara exclusive still from Muktodhara

Genre: Drama

Released on: 3rd August, 2012.

The director duo Nandita Roy and Shiboprasad Mukherjee penned a screenplay that was inspired from one of the famous theater with the same name that featured Rituparna Sengupta and prison inmates including Nigel Akara, a real time convict. The film although remains a shadow of the real drama played on the stage, tells an inspirational story about rehabilitation of criminals and life after imprisonment.

USP: Music by Surajit Mukherjee and Joy Sarkar, distinctive story and Nigel Akara.

3)      Chitrangada

 A still from Chitrangada..
A still from Chitrangada..

Genre: Drama

Released on: 31st August.

Rituporno Ghosh takes a deep insight in one of the dance dramas of Rabindranath Tagore with the same title. The screenplay, direction and metaphorical description of time and psych in the movie were awesome. Actors like Anjan Dutt, Dipankar Dey, Raima Sen and Jishu Sengupta along with the director himself did justice to their characters. The crowning of a hearts wish would rather be the bottom line of the film.

USP: Crisp dialogue, subtle camera works depicting time, Anjan Dutt and spectacular story telling.

4)      Aboseshey

Abosheshey - a film by Aditi Roy
Abosheshey – a film by Aditi Roy

Genre: Drama

Released on: 21st September.

Debutant director Aditi Roy won my heart with her wonderful story telling technique. The story celebrates the love of a woman in true perspective. A son discovers his mother as a person after she passes away through her intimate acquaintances. The story itself rose to a new height as Rupa Ganguly did splendidly well to justify her character. Co-actors Ankur Khanna, Sen, Dipankar Dey and others were so well placed in the movie. This film demands poly-watch attention from every story lover of Bengal. How about naming the film differently, “Suchismita’s Diary!”?

USP: Tagore Songs by Rupa Ganguly, fabulous direction, apt time transition.

5)      Dutta vs. Dutta

A story celebrating life, love and music...
A story celebrating life, love and music…

Genre: Drama

Released on: 23rd November.

Veteran film maker, Anjan Dutt takes a magic wand to make an autobiographical drama and presented the audience a straight from the heart story. The celebration of life amidst all the worldly problems and victory of life remains the bottom line of the movie. The director stepped in the shoes of his father and introduced the very talented Ronodeep Basu as Dutta junior in the film. The story revolves in the city of Kolkata and brings in a lot of nostalgia along with the celebration of idiosyncratic Bengalis. Actors like Rupa Ganguly, Rita Koiral, Parno Mitra, Dipankar Dey, Kaushik Sen, Shankar Chakraborty, Srijit Mukherjee, Arpita Chatterjee and others were undoubtedly remarkable as the Director splendidly placed in the movie.

USP: Music by Neel Dutt, dialogues, profound story line and Anjan Dutt’s acting.

I wonder how much money these five films made, but I can guarantee love, happiness, music, sorrow, smiles, tears, anger, compassion, sensibility, hatred, life, death, friendship and everything that your heart yarns for in these movies.. Why watch senseless Indie movies!!!?????????????

There were genuine efforts by other film makers as well and Bengal is surging ahead in sensible film making as the city waits for more formidable stories and more honest efforts from directors, producers, actors, cinematographers, music directors and everyone who contributes in making a film and turning it into an art from a mere motion picture!

Signing off from the lens desk of my-motion-picture till you see all these five films and tell me if I was right… 🙂

 

Dutta vs. Dutta – A story celebrating Life, Love and Music!

Assess Mr. Dutt.
Assess Mr. Dutt.
Assess Mr. Dutt.
Assess Mr. Dutt.

It is difficult to assess a film in India. It is even more difficult to assess a good movie in India. I am writing this with the hope that whoever reads this, understands life.

Indian movies get released in theaters and then after a while DVDs hit the market. I watched Dutta vs. Dutta thrice in the last few days and realized some of the key factors that differentiate a well made film from something that we call commercial movies. I call them senseless though!

Dutta- jr. - Played by Ronodeep Basu
Dutta- jr. – Played by Ronodeep Basu
Dutta Sr. - Played by Anjan Dutt.
Dutta Sr. – Played by Anjan Dutt.

Should I do an assessment then? I am not a film scholar, although I religiously love films. So, what I would like to portray in this “What I wrote” section is Life as it seems to us and to the man who made Dutta vs. Dutta. Yes, I am talking about the national award-winning director Mr. Anjan Dutt. He has depicted life in the true spirits of life for so many years now, not because he is getting paid. He believes in life that celebrates the fact that we are we and we are alive to see who we are!

I know things are getting complicated. It actually demands an extended discussion. However, let me limit my thoughts and words in the boundaries of cinema and art for the time being. There were movies that were self-explanatory, biographies or auto-biographies. This movie can fit in all those genres, and yet proclaims an organic signature of its own.

St. Pauls, Darjeeling!
St. Pauls, Darjeeling!

My first reaction after I saw the premier of the film in Priya Cinemas was, “Naah! Not up to the mark!” Although, I liked the movie, I thought it was hurried at some points. The story could have been done in two parts. I know I am sitting in this lousy place called India, where good work needs to be referred and endorsed and reckless exertions gets financial applause. I know how things are! Yet, I am proud of the man who had the balls to stand up and tell his own story in such a fearless disposition!

Srijit Mukherjee as Tony
Srijit Mukherjee as Tony

Believe me or not, if you understood life even for a day, you would say this is a real story! Fiction and reality go hand in hand, and as the saying goes, “Reality is stranger than fiction”, I would advocate everything shown in the movie and endorse every story told about every character that comprised Dutta vs. Dutta. No one in this world is a Hero, if he is not a hero in his own perspective. We all commit crimes, speak untrue versions of incidents, hurt our loved ones, fight for hasty egos, shout for something wrong, campaign violence, and dream about other women and wish to have all the happiness in our lives. We suffer defeat; we stand up, shrug our shoulders and start of all over again. What we don’t do is we don’t speak about our defeats in the same way we speak about our victories.

Dutta-bari..
Dutta-bari..

Art is a form that hardly requires a language.  Film art is even more international and Mr. Anjan Dutt, a true legend by all means depicted how a simple and an earthly story can reach a new altitude with the sheer intention of speaking what is true and natural. He told his own story. How he was brought up? Who and What were his inspiration? What odds did he come across? How he experienced love? What made him Mr. Anjan Dutt, the person he is now!

Kaushik Sen and Anjan Dutt in a still from the movie!
Kaushik Sen and Anjan Dutt in a still from the movie!

Let me speak on behalf of the man, “Yes! My mother was alcoholic, yet she was a wonderful musician. Yes! My father was unsuccessful, had artificial egos and had an extra-marital affair, yet he was valiant enough to save an innocent soul and suffer the wrath of an ill-maintained government norm. Yes! My uncle sued my father for a meager property, yet he took the responsibility of the entire family when times were not so happy. Yes! We all have short comings, like every family we too suffered, yet we defeated bad times with our own honest approach.”

Rupa Ganguly in Dutta vs. Dutta
Rupa Ganguly in Dutta vs. Dutta

The story grows in every one of us who fight the odds of life and chase a dream that sometimes become a mere mirage. We convince our defeating morals and come back with rejuvenated enthusiasm. The film celebrated Music; it certainly celebrated the aesthetic features of music. It tells me how dreams can be true even if the worst Tempest hits your heart! The film spoke about the power of music that encompasses a bullet or a gun!

I would like to dedicate this movie to the man himself, Mr. Dutt and to all those who get disillusioned everyday and yet has that lion’s heart to express what is true. The narration done by the Director was heartfelt. Throughout the movie, I could relate every song he wrote in his entire life, every word he spoke, every gesture he made and every smoke he exhaled in my knowledge. It seemed like every character in the movie spoke about the man he is now! To congratulate him for this brilliantly made movie, “It’s simply a Director’s movie” won’t be an understatement! Or should I look for a better phrase?

P.S.: I would like to congratulate the Producer of the movie, Mr. Purnendu Roy and Mrs. Neelakhi Roy for their courage in believing what Mr. Dutt wanted. Congratulations to the entire team of Dutta vs. Dutta. Everyone was spectacular!

Signing off from the desk of mymotionpicture, till I gather enough courage to pen down my thoughts..

 

We all want to stay in Hogwarts but are we all Harry Potter(s)?

Observation, Hypothesis, Experiment, Analysis, Conclusion; since the 17th century, the methodical way has been the generally accepted way to explore, discover, and acquire new knowledge. The actual process of intellectual discovery, however, is rarely so simple or objective. The human mind often leaps from statement to conclusion with ease, and rushes impetuous into hypothesis. The same is happening with the Indian cinema and eventually hampering the Indian audiences.

Experiment, Analysis, Conclusion...
Experiment, Analysis, Conclusion…
Observation, Hypothesis, Experiment...
Observation, Hypothesis, Experiment…

Again, remember—you are the best judge! There are no right or wrong answers. Just thoughtful ones!! Anything catch your fancy? It can’t be true. Everything needs to be very much logical even not much clear on the conscious level. Cinema is far beyond the silence camera and action. It is the life portrayed through the eyes of a very intellectual man who, again, has started from the basis laws of science- Observation, Hypothesis, Experiment, Analysis, and Conclusion. The difference lies in perception.

There is a very smart saying the enemy of art is the absence of limitations. Let us not make this statement into a verbatim. The world has lot to see and why not we start being the leaders. Cinema does not fabricate heroes, it depicts lives. We all wish to be in Hogwarts and for that we do not need to be a Harry Potter!!!

Candidly put into words by: Shreya Goswami – Guest author @mymotionpicture!

Shreya also wrote about Santa this Christmas!

Who else wants to save plants and animals out here???

I agree..
Being a Hero is tougher than being that regular bad guy!!!
I shall deliberately wear my underwear over my PANTS!!!

 

Amateur Cartographer

20130104-194048.jpg

I resolve to leave my vigilante days behind me,
instead finding a less dangerous hobby
where I can still wear spandex.

I resolve to hand in my leather mask
because for one:
its not as fashionable in real life
as on the glossy models of Superheroes Weekly
because the ladies don’t seem to like it
and for two:
bad hair days on its removal
and for three:
thats’s none of your freaking business.

I resolve to hang up my cape,
maybe dangling on a clothesline or
telephone wire-lines scratched
in a bedpost that “I was here.”

I resolve to change my life,
because saving the world
is a rather dangerous business.
There are always fewer casualties
but they’re always more significant.

The problem with being a hero
is though I may save the lives
of countless plants and animals,
I have to be there to see
when the one person…

View original post 4 more words

How I perceived Calcutta 71 – A tribute to Mrinal Sen!

Beginning of an era! - Mrinal Sen in his early 20's.
Beginning of an era! – Mrinal Sen in his early 20’s.

A young man completes his degree in Physics from Scottish Church College, Calcutta and then becomes a journalist. Political backdrops and unseen personal clashes drive him out of the city and compel him to be a medical representative and medicine seller in an unknown land. He comes back to his city to take up a job of a sound technician in Calcutta and then the story begins. The journey through which Mr. Mrinal Sen took us, the film lovers of India, instigated and regularly echoed his struggles and frustrations about the fake and senseless culture of Indian cinema.

A still from the movie Mrigaya (1976)
A still from the movie Mrigaya (1976)
Sound - Camera- Action!
Sound – Camera- Action!

He believed in the art and realized its mass appeal. He wanted to tell stories in a different way. He tried to cause worries and also supplied means to tackle them. India has wasted many years after his efforts were fizzing off. He is 90 years old now and his dreams are still dreams in terms of implementation and honesty in the approach which beautified his films. The entire film fraternity saw three dominating film makers at that point as Satyajit Ray, Ritwik Ghatak and Mrinal Sen complemented each other with their strong story line and candid cinematography.

A still from a Mrinal Sen's film.
A still from a Mrinal Sen’s film.
A still from Khandahar.
A still from Khandahar.

I personally believe that a even simple story can reach the hearts and minds of the audience with sheer brilliance of effective story telling technique. Mrinal Sen colonized this idea and he had this in-born talent of insightful story telling. With technicians and machines that are obsolete and out of practice in the modern film industry, he made some of the best films that Indians ever experienced.

Mrinal Sen, disillusioned by the inflexible and unjust rules of the world and specially his country had the guts to comment on some of the most sensitive issues of the 60’s, 70, and 80’s. His films in the 90’s and one in 2002 also had a social commentary to ensure food for his thoughts. He was a rebel as far as film making is concerned. The film industry broke some of the traditional shackles as he introduced his formula of new age films.

As he watches the proceedings...
As he watches the proceedings…

Sen’s works were inspired by a lot of unseen people and associations. His love for theater and drama might be the primary cause for shifting his interest from physics to films. Similarly, his respect for the doctrines of Karl Marx made him direct the Kolkata trilogy in the early 70’s. Interview (1971), Calcutta 71 (1972) and Padatik (The Guerilla Fighter, 1973) speaks about romantic and idiosyncratic Bengalis who fought for civil independence in their own land. He depicted emotions of a large section of our society who are deprived every day.  The Naxalite movement was enclosed and celebrated with correct mindset and apt verbiage.

Poster
Poster
A still from Calcutta 71
A still from Calcutta 71

Humor was also an integral part of Mrinal Sen’s films and classy humor should be the term to define his witty depiction of scenes. He used visual metaphors and efficient ironical dialogues to establish his thoughts. He commented on a number of political events of that time and also displayed the pains and anguish of his hapless inmates due to the reckless and selfish political system of our country. From being a petty medical representative to be a film maker respected by the entire nation, Mrinal Sen’s journey witnessed 27 feature films, 14 short films and 5 documentaries.

My motion picture pays a humble tribute to Mrinal Sen for his lifetime achievements and efforts. He was a visionary who tried his best to reform the film industry, to enhance the creativity and film art, to negotiate unprofessionalism and establish honest intellectual approach towards films. His efforts didn’t go in vain but lacked proper support as sluggish film makers found means to promote their ideas about senseless cinemas and its profit quotients. The affluent educated society of the country still believes what Sen, Ray and Ghatak wanted to portray in their films, writings and interviews. However, the system has lost the zeal to implement new ideas.

Ghatak
Ghatak
Ray
Ray
Sen
Sen

The critics will be shouting and filthy business policies will be flourishing. Time goes by and Indian film industry including the regional film industries are still satisfied with box office returns. Film business schemes murders film art on a regular basis and deceive the illiterate common mass by showing rain scenes on the road, half-clad women in item numbers and sensual scenes of extra marital affairs.

As desperation and frustration creeps in my mind while I finish my reverence article for one of the pioneers of Real Indian movies, Mr. Mrinal Sen, someone tells me “Dabang 2” becomes a 100 crore member! (*sighs)