Wow - this movie really blew me away. The story about Devdas, Paro and Chanda (or Chandramukhi) was interpretated in a totally new, modern way. There were even two newcoming actresses: Mahie Gill, who I found very good. She seems very Indian and natural (she's been casted in other movies too, but this was her first big role). Furthermore Kalki Koechlin, playing Chanda/Leni. I'm not sure of what to think of her. She was quite convincing in this movie, but the question is, if she can also fill out other roles...? The movie was also very gloomy, a fact that doubtless doesn't stimulates you to watch it very often, but that was also quite fascinating. The music matched the movie perfectly, especially the many versions of "Emosanal Attyachar", but I won't listen to the soundtrack very often, as it's just real film-music.
I can only recommend this movie, particularly to fans of Abhay Deol (includes me) and all those, who also like the "dark" Indian cinema.
"Who would voluntarily leave the streets of Delhi?", asks a famous indian poet, and is often citet in "Delhi-6".Â At the beginning only by the supporting characters, later also by main character Roshan, as he recognizes his love to the city. It is a love-hate- relationship, that somehow - although on a smaller scale - rubs off on the audience. Even people like me, that have never been to India, or for that matter Delhi, can get a rather realistic view on life in the capital of India. The movie probably shows only a fraction of the different groups of population, but masters it wonderfully by portraying the seemingly stereotypical characters in a more of a "grey-zone" way. In some ways, the film resembles "Rang De Basanti" - it plays in Delhi, shows the problems of young Indians and the political turmoil in India. Nevertheless, there are small aberrations; the political aspect isn't as extreme, as in "RDB", and even though, it in the beginning, Roshan (Abhishek) and Bittu (Sonam Kapoor) seem to be the most important characters, the many (and often older) minor characters are very important for the film, and surprisingly profound, too. Particulary surprising is Divya Dutta, who usually is known for small and rather unimportant roles. Here, she plays a woman from the lowest caste, who has got a lot more in her brain, then some of the more distinguished persons. A similar (but male) character is played by Atul Kulkarni, who also contributes much to the film. Sonam Kapoor is unexpectedly better, than in "Saawariya", after which many (including me) had already almost given up their hope for her. She convinces as a young, rebelling representative of the Indian middle class, who's on the search for her identity and wants to be free, instead of submitting herself to a man. We can be curious, if Sonam will master a bigger role too - however, she's very good in this one. The leading character of the movie is played by Abhishek Bachchan, and there could not be found a better one for this part. Firstly, he speaks with a real American accent, contrarily to many other NRI-mimes. Furthermore, he plays his part calmly and naturally and doesn't steal too much attention from the smaller roles. He's passionate too - after a while, most of the characters recognize, how narrow-minded and oldfashioned they act.Â
All of this is accompanied by a wonderfully modern and multifaceted soundtrack from the pen of India's favourite composer, A. R. Rahman. The songs match Delhi perfectly - thoroughly Indian, but also very new and creative.Â
With "Delhi-6", Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra succeeds in making a modern portrait of India, a little similar to "Rang De Basanti", but also with many new aspects, that "RDB" didn't come up with.Â
Iâ€™ve now seen all film versions of â€žEmmaâ€œ(at least, these are the only ones I know); The American version â€œCluelessâ€ (1995), the British Version â€œEmmaâ€ (1996) and now, finally, the Indian one, â€œAishaâ€ (2010). Without being biased as an official Bollywood-Fan (after all, itâ€™s not about the country, but about the quality of the movie!), I must say: India made the best job! â€œEmmaâ€ stuck really almost exactly to the literary template, what wouldnâ€™t necessarily have been that bad, if there hadnâ€™t been miserable camera and those endlessly long scenes. I found â€œCluelessâ€ a 100 times better, the movie has humour, irony and it contributes something own, modern to the theme. But since the 90s, a lot of things have changedâ€¦ And off course, in â€œCluelessâ€, you kind of have that Hollywood-feeling â€“ which is not a bad thing â€“ but I think that â€œAishaâ€ just hits the point better, nowadays. True, the houses are huge and sparkly, too, as is Daddyâ€™s credit card, but the flick is still, somehow, sweet and sensitiveâ€¦ You can identify with the characters, all of them. The camera setting is calm and clear, the pictures colourful andâ€¦ the clothes are luscious â€“ this is the kind of stylist Bollywood needed! â€œAishaâ€ is the third movie with Sonam Kapoor, that Iâ€™ve seen, and she gets better each time. In â€œSaawariyaâ€ I found her pesky and talentless, in â€œDelhi-6â€ I had doubts about how she would master a bigger role, but now, all my doubts have been blown away. Aisha is the perfects role for Sonam (whose personal style I also like very much), and the team seems to have been perfect for showing her talent. Itâ€™s all about choosing the right role. As most people know, Abhay Deol has been on my favourite-list since â€œDev Dâ€â€¦ Every time Iâ€™m surprised, how unimpressive he seems to be, when you first see him. Off course itâ€™s not the hardest cinematic challenge to portray this modern Indian Mr. Knightley, but he makes a good job. Iâ€™d even say that it couldnâ€™t have been done any better. All the other characters (which were many) can only get positive commentaries from me. I canâ€™t remember all the new names, but really, all of the actors were good â€“ I also liked the fact, that, though the script doesnâ€™t let much room for describing the side characters, you still have the feeling of knowing themâ€¦ They do not vanish in the background. I really appreciate seeing so many talented new faces â€“ as you know, the latest trend in Bollywood was pairing the big (old) star with the new (young) newcomer. That was kind of witty in RNBDJ, but now it sucks. They somehow did it right with â€œAishaâ€. Off course, the story is a little unworldly and isolated, but thatâ€™s what the main character is like, and subconsciously itâ€™s almost a little ironic (as were all Emma film versions â€“ and the book).
Finally, the movie is perfect for a nice evening with the girls (or even alone). If the movie is good for men, I canâ€™t tell, but who came through â€œSATCâ€, will experience â€œAishaâ€ as a salvation: No Botox. Okay, I like â€œSATCâ€â€¦ But honestly: â€œAishaâ€ is just as good, and at least not that embarrassing.
And now, please: Pounce on the DVD-shelves (slash, Online-Shops)! (At least all the feminine creatures here).
In India, "3 Idiots" became not only the biggest Blockbuster ever - it also succeeded in winning (almost) every major movie award of 2010. At the beginning of the movie I found myself asking a simple question: "Why?". What was it about this movie, that amazed the Indians that much? There was one fact, that, for me, spoke rather against the movie: Aamir Khan is TOO OLD! He does (surprisingly) look more handsome than in RDB... And he plays well, as always. But come on, playing a college student while being 44 years old?! I didn't know, what to think of this. However, the movie is funny - even though some of the jokes seem a little like American Pie to me, a movie I do like, but my amusement is always a little overshaded by guilt: I ask myself - Is this actually funny, or is it just stupid?
Main essence of the movie seems to be: Have fun in your life, do what you want to... or so. I translate this to the fact, that we should just forget some of our moral values for a while, and just enjoy the experience of watching "3 Idiots". This was something I realised, when I already had seen half of the movie: Do not take this movie too seriously - it is not supposed to be. Neither the characters, nor their actions and attitudes, nor the rushing shift between joke and melodrama. (Oh, but I have to say, the actors were fantastic!). You must let yourself be lulled by the overexcited "All Izz Well" or the sweet "Zoobi Doobi", and be amused about Ranju's cute black-and-white house. Because, when I accepted all that, I found "3 Idiots" to be a rather succesfully made movie. Not the best Indian Movie ever, not for me, and it does not at all come anywhere near Avatar - but when the credits rolled over the screen, I was truly satisfied by this movie, and I was happy. And isn't that just, what a good movie should make you feel like?
I think, the Indian comedy is on it's right way! (Please (!!!), no more Phir Hera Pheri or Bhagam Bhag)!
Dil Chahta Hai is cult, so I'm sure that most (or maybe even all) of you have already seen it, and those who haven't (like me, until yesterday), ought to catch up as soon as possible. So much for that.
As you can read out of the plot description, we're not fed a new story, but that can, as is generally known, also be lovely - provided that the whole thing is freshened up a little. Be it via new perspectives, eminently good actors, a great soundtrack... or a little bit of everything. That's probably what Farhan Akhtar, who debuted as a director with this one, thought too, when he puzzled out what became one of the most known Bollywood films nowadays. (By the by, I'm a big appreciator of Farhan Akhtar's work and happy to have seen all of his scheduled work by now).
The result, which may celebrate its 10st birthday this year, can be seen, and is now as then surrounded by some fresh air, to which, among other things, the great actors contribute. Many of them are high-profiled performers today. Aamir Khan, who in the same year tightened his position in Bollywood by means of Laagan, gave one of his best shots again. Accustomed down-to-earth, but not boring, he plays the buffoon Akash, and in some scenes almost eclipses his colleagues Saif Ali Khan and Akshaye Khanna. Still, those two are in full cry in Dil Chahta Hai. While Saif has been somewhat disappointing with his choice of films in the last past years, he doesn't leave anything to be desired in what's often dealt as his big break. He's the perfect cast for the charming womanizer Samir, in spite of some dubiously fashionable outfits. The third party is Akshaye, who gives one of his best performances here. Though he, just like Aamir, is no classic beauty, he's very well able to inspire as the gentle artist Sid, and soon catches the sympathy of the audience. His love to an older woman appears to be cordial and honest and is one of the best ideas of the writers. There are still to many films with old men and young women, that don't even question the age difference, and not enough with an opposite constellation. Dimple Kapadia plays Tara and I really liked her in this role - she has a calm aura, through which you can slightly see her insecurity and sadness. I also believe that Tara, in her very heart, loved Sid, but didn't feel she had enough power to listen to it and break the traditions. Sonali Kulkarni, who plays Samir's big love Pooja, isn't really worth mentioning, as her role is rather exchangeable and unimportant. And finally, there's Preity Zinta, my favorite actress, who sadly isn't very present in these days. As always, she is, in face of an unthankful hair styling, enchanting and fully fills out her role. She also makes a cute couple with Aamir, in some scenes, a concentrated passion springs up between the two of them; I'm talking about the famous metro scene, where the door shuts between Akash and Shalini... For one moment, their expressions change and the feelings are at once as touchable as the door between them. That's something I call real acting talent, and I was just captured by that scene... The two are convincing all through the film, and I still wonder how they succeeded in making that opera scene not seem kitschy.
Another great couple is the threesome of Aamir, Saif and Akshaye. The three boys'/ men's friendship is convincing and realistic (apart from the fact that a tiny comment destroys the friendship for such a long time, but we'll save that under dramaturgic freedom). This whole wonderful and interesting story (which, buy the way, doesn't get boring though its three hours), is also backed up by great locations, a fresh soundtrack and well done filming. Sydney, Goa and Bombay are portrayed beautifully, but in a realistic way, by Ravi K. Chandran. The soundtrack by S-E-L is youthful and stays in your head, and it enhances the story instead of unnecessarily deviating from it.
I could go on praising this film, but I think it's enough for today. Dil Chahta Hai lives up to its promise: It's an ode to friendship, with all its highs and lows, and a remembrance, that there's a soulmate for everyone. All of that may sound really kitschy to you, but it's been permuted resourcefully and hence remains a true milestone of Bollywood - a must-see.