reviews

  • Yahoo Detailed Review: Saina

    Saina Cast: Parineeti Chopra, Manav Kaul Director - Amole Gupte Release date - 26 March, 2021 ‘Saina’ directed by Amole Gupte is based on Badminton player Saina Nehwal’s life. Parineeti Chopra plays the main lead in this film. Is this biographical sports drama worth a watch? Saina Nehwal, an eight-year-old from Hisar, Haryana became the poster girl of badminton in India. Saina, was not only the first female player to become the World no 1 but she has won over 24 international titles including a bronze Olympic medal. This film attempts to explore her extraordinary journey… Click here for The Girl on The Train Review Parineeti as Sania manages to get the physicality right for the role. Also, her restlessness to achieve her milestones is quite palpable. What the script doesn’t give her is the ability to explore the struggle within - the audience doesn’t get to experience the emotions behind her sweat and tears. To actually be able to feel disappointed or overwhelmed by her achievements or her loss. While the film looks at quite a few milestones in Saina’s life - her relationship with her coach and mentor Rajan, played by Manav Kaul is a significant part of the story. In one of his first meetings with Saina, Rajan tells her that the game is not just about powering through a match, it is also about tactical play. This movie tries to power through the storytelling but it doesn’t delve into the details of the game. A sports film feels complete to me, when it is not just focussing on the player but also, giving me an insight to what the game is like. In a film like ‘Dangal’ or ‘Chak De India’ even a novice learnt a thing or two about the sport but ‘Saina’ fails to do that. Click here for Mumbai Saga Review The filmmakers focus on the protagonist and to a certain extent on the disciplined regime her mentor makes her follow. Manav Kaul is compelling as the no-nonsense coach but his involvement in her achievements isn’t brought out effectively. Also, for the other supporting characters in the film, especially her husband Kashyap, their parts aren’t given the detail they deserve. They are relegated to the background and aren’t projected as the individuals that they are. Saina is a role model but is the portrayal as powerful? Will this film make you want to encourage your daughter or sister or niece to take up badminton seriously? I think that’s where the gap lies in the storytelling - Saina’s story is inspiring but the film isn’t as passionate. It is 3 stars from me for this one. Please subscribe to Yahoo India on YouTube for more videos

  • Yahoo Detailed Review: Mumbai Saga

    Cast: John Abraham, Emraan Hashmi, Kajal Aggarwal, Rohit Roy, Mahesh Manjrekar, Amole Gupte, Prateik Babbar Director - Sanjay Gupta Release date - 19 March, 2021 Sanjay Gupta - known for action flicks like Kaante and Zinda among others is back with ‘Mumbai Saga’. It’s a face-off between John Abraham and Emraan Hashmi - the don and the cop. Is this underworld drama worth a watch? Amartya Rao played by Abraham has to make a reluctant entry into a world of crime and violence. Harboured by the local politician he soon rules over Mumbai. However, the death of a businessman has the cop on his heels and “encounter specialist”, Vijay Savarkar played by Hashmi has him on the hit-list. Also watch: Roohi Review When it is a story about the underworld - violence, blood and gore come with the territory. In his sepia-tinted world, Gupta looks at recreating the Bombay of the 80s and then Mumbai of the 90s. A time when underworld gangsters ruled the city and turf wars were common. And the only way to deal with the crime was encounters. Director Sanjay Gupta like his earlier films has an ensemble cast in this one too. Rohit Roy and Shaad Randhawa play Abraham’s trusted allies. Prateik Babbar plays the younger brother - he has lived a protected life but can’t help but stay away from a life of crime. Amole Gupte as the rival gangster is a pleasure to watch - he gets the comic timing just right. Click here for The Girl on The Train Review There are some slick slow-motion action sequences. The story is however lost amidst the blazing guns and dialoguebaazi. The plot is wafer-thin and the storytelling isn’t compelling enough. The director doesn’t bother assigning any motive to why his characters operate the way they do. This film is a story that we have seen multiple times before, there is nothing new or unique about how this one unfolds. I am going with 2 stars for this one. ‘Mumbai Saga’ is watchable but watching a film in the theatre is no longer about just investing time and money, it is also about steeping out during Covid. Please subscribe to Yahoo India on YouTube for more videos

  • Yahoo Detailed Review: Roohi

    Cast: Rajkummar Rao, Janhvi Kapoor and Varun Sharma Director - Hardik Mehta Release date - 11 March, 2021 2 stars There have been a few exceptions but Bollywood horror flicks have mostly been disappointing. Then came a film called ‘Stree', it mostly felt like a comedy but was really scary in parts. The makers are now with another horror comedy - ‘Roohi’ starring Jahnvi Kapoor and Rajkummar Rao. Two small-town boys played by Rajkummar and Varun, are part local journalists, and part hustlers. They are entrusted by their boss - the local goon, with the task of kidnapping Roohi, played by Jahnvi for a forced wedding. When the wedding has to be cancelled, the boys are left with a kidnapped girl - who isn’t as defenceless as they imagine her to be… Roohi has two avatars and the second one is quite scary…Is she possessed or is it a multiple personality disorder? While the two naive boys try to figure out a way to deal with their hostage, both of them can’t help but fall in love with her - it’s definitely an usual love triangle. The thing about small-town stories that don’t have the razzle dazzle of big budget films is the quirky characters. It is not just the main leads but the supporting cast that plays a significant part in bolstering the storytelling. In ‘Stree’ the characters played by Pankaj Tripathi, Aparshakti Khurrana and Abhishek Banerjea made the plot intriguing and enjoyable. Unfortunately, the makers fail to do the same for ‘Roohi’ ….. To be fair - Jahnvi is quite convincing as both Roohi and Afza - she manages to come across as vulnerable and scary in her different avatars. Rajkummar almost aces his part and it is difficult to imagine that this is the same guy who was speaking with an American accent in his last film ‘The white tiger’ but at times, he does seem to be trying too hard to be funny. As for Varun Sharma - I just felt like he is getting typecast as this bumbling idiot and it’s difficult to differentiate one character from the other. There is no variation in his portrayals. What Hardik Mehta’s plot lacks is coherence. The storytelling is all over the place and the songs just drag down the pace of this tale. While some dialogues and wisecracks work really well, others either fall flat or are just cringeworthy. Also, the climax probably wanted to make a point but the message is lost in the chaos. After sitting through the entire film - I still didn’t understand whether she was possessed or suffering from a personality disorder. Also, there is no explanation for what actually caused this. It is neither a scary horror film nor a laugh-out-loud comedy. I am not sure whether it is worth venturing into a theatre to watch this one. ‘Roohi’ gets 2 stars from me. For more video please do subscribe to our YouTube channel For more Movie Reviews click here

  • Yahoo Detailed Review: The White Tiger

    Cast: Priyanka Chopra Jonas Rajkummar Rao Adarsh GouravDirector - Ramin BahraniRelease date - 22 January, 2020 3.5 stars ‘The White Tiger’ directed by Raman Bahrani is based on Arvind Adiga’s novel of the same name. Priyanka Chopra Jonas, Rajkummar Rao and Adarsh Gaurav star in this story about the immense class and caste divide that’s prevalent in India.

The novel won the Man Booker Prize in 2008, will this 2021 film make for a compelling watch?Stay tuned to find out
Balram Halwai, played by Adarsh Gourav, has known only hardship since childhood. Having witnessed his father living a life of debt and his aspirations of higher studies being snuffed out early, he refuses to be shackled by poverty. He can read and speak English and he plans to use that to his advantage. The notion of servitude is so deeply ingrained in the Indian society - can Balram really break free?Ashok and Pinky, played by Priyanka and Rajkummar, are Balram’s employers. They have returned from the US and don’t approve of the way servants are treated in the household. The household or the patriarchs in this family are the Stork and the Mongoose - Ashok’s father and elder brother - landlords from Balram’s village.The director brings out the stark differences that coexist in India. The nation as the fastest growing global economy. The haves live a life of opulence and luxury. And the have-nots, who have no way of escaping their fate of impoverishment. What makes the chasm deeper is the caste-divide that allow some to always behave entitled.
The cast of ‘The White Tiger’ - especially Priyanka and Rajkummar - belt out convincing performances. Priyanka as the NRI daughter-in-law fails to fathom how the class/caste dynamics play out in India’s heartland. Rajkummar plays her husband - he tries to behave emancipated but it is almost impossible for him to escape the trappings of the social structure that he is a part of. 

The hero of this tale is obviously Adarsh Gourav - his portrayal of Balram is at once, likeable and loathsome. At times, your heart goes out to the loyal servant who is trying to do the right thing but is always being reminded of his place. At the same time, I felt repelled by some of his actions - does the end justify the means? 

VO 6 The film is bilingual and the dialogue exchange isn’t seamless. Somewhere the interactions between the Mongoose and Balram, speaking in English seems to just not fit in. While the performances keep you engaged, the climax doesn’t have a dramatic impact. I am going 3.5 stars for this one. Please do share your views with us and don’t forget to like, share and comment on this video. Follow us on YouTube for more videos

  • Yahoo Detailed Review: Tribhanga

    Cast: Tanvi Azmi          Kajol          Mithila Palkar Director - Renuka SahaneRelease date - 15 January, 2020 3 stars This week’s release has three female actors, Tanvi Azmi, Kajol and Mithila Palkar in the lead. Written and directed by Renuka Sahane, Tribhanga is a dance pose in Odissi and represents the three protagonists and their unconventional life.Kajol is known to be very picky about the scripts she selects - what’s special about this one? Bollywood actress and Odissi dancer, Anuradha Apte, played by Kajol shares a complicated equation with her mother. Nayantara Apte, played by Tanvi Azmi, is the mother, an acclaimed writer, who decided to live life on her own terms. Nayan gets divorced and her ensuing choice in men dents her relationship with her children. Anuradha or Anu, grows up without a father figure and after being in abusive relationships becomes a rebel. She uses cuss words, smokes (or used to) and has a string of non-serious relationships. But when it comes to her daughter, played by Mithila, she is fiercely protective. Masha, played by Mithila, has two feisty female role models while growing up. But she chooses to marry into a very traditional family where she is expected to cover her head at all times. Why does Masha pick such an almost regressive set-up for herself? It’s interesting how each of them have a completely different approach to life The men in the supporting cast - Kunal Roy Kapur, Vaibhav Tatwawaadi, Manav Gohil and Kanwaljeet Singh in a cameo are integral to the tale of these 3 women. They provide insight into how some men can be empowering by their mere presence. Tanvi Azmi is convincing as a flawed mother, who has made peace with her decisions and mistakes. Kajol is good in parts but over-the-top in quite a few scenes. Playing a rebel doesn’t seem to come naturally to her. Mithila as the ‘balanced’ one fits right in. She resists the drama that seems to define the older women in this tale. Director Renuka Sahane does an interesting job of laying out the various elements of a woman's life but fails to bring it together seamlessly. It’s an engaging watch but not compelling enough. I am going with 3 stars for ‘Tribhanga’. Follow us on YouTube for more videos

  • Yahoo India Personality of the Year 2020: COVID Warriors

    At the frontline of these unprecedented times, we have seen heroes and role models emerge who have unwittingly been caught in the crossfire -- not just for a day or a week, but for months on end.

  • 'Chhalaang' Detailed Review: Yahoo Movies

    Cast : Rajkummar Rao, Nushrat Bharucha, Mohammed Zeeshan Ayyub Director: Hansal Mehta 3 stars Review by Rummana Ahmed The film’s first half has a lot of laugh-out-loud moments but the second half feels a little stretched. ‘Chhalang’ has subtle messages but it never gets preachy.

  • Khaali Peeli Detailed Review: Yahoo Movies

    Cast: Ishan Khatter, Ananya Panday Direction: Maqbool Khan 2.5 stars Review by Rummana Ahmed ‘Khaali Peeli’ means ‘just like that’ so if you have nothing much to do on this long weekend and just want some timepass, you can watch this movie. Follow us on YouTube for more videos

  • 'Dolly Kitty Aur Woh Chamakte Sitare' Detailed Review: Yahoo Movies

    Cast: Konkona Sen Sharma, Bhumi Pednekar Direction: Alankrita Shrivastava 3.5 stars Review by Rummana Ahmed Dolly played by Konkona is married and settled in Noida, while Kitty played by Bhumi, is new in town, looking for a job and is temporarily living with her sister. Is Dolly’s life as perfect as it seems? And is Kitty as free as she claims to be? Can the sisters really bond over their dark secrets? Or will their differences drive a wedge in their already strained relationship?

  • 'Sadak 2' Detailed Review: Yahoo Movies

    Cast: Aditya Roy Kapur, Alia Bhatt, Sanjay Dutt, Pooja Bhatt Direction: Mahesh Bhatt 1 star Review by Rummana Ahmed ‘Sadak 2’ is a revenge saga - Aaarya played by Alia wants to avenge her mother’s death, who she has allegedly been killed by her evil stepmother and a fake Godman. Her boyfriend Vishal played by Aditya also joins her fight but he seems to have his own secrets. Aarya meets Ravi played by Dutt, who has become suicidal after his wife’s death. She gives Ravi a sense of purpose and he gets involved in her quest to get justice and fight evil.

  • Yahoo Movies Review: Gulabo Sitabo

    Shoojit Sircar's film has amusing characters and a distinctive narrative but underwhelms.

  • Yahoo Movies Review: Angrezi Medium

    Irrfan powers this film with an incredibly convincing and heartwarming performance.

  • Yahoo Movies Review: Baaghi 3

    Tiger Shroff is back in ‘Baaghi 3’ as the invincible hero, who can single handedly bring down a nation.

  • Yahoo Movies Review: Thappad

    ‘Thappad’ is so much more than a film about a husband slapping his wife and the consequences in their married life thereafter.

  • Yahoo Movies Review: Shubh Mangal Zyada Saavdhan

    The director deserves loud applause for not only normalizing gay love but also for not shying away from showing the couple hugging and kissing.

  • Yahoo Movies Review: Love Aaj Kal

    You need a complicated heart to be able relate to this love story.

  • Yahoo Movies Review: Jawaani Jaaneman

    ‘Jawaani Jaaneman’ is a short and sweet comedy that had the potential to be much more. A more thoughtful script and better character development could have really lifted the narrative.

  • Yahoo Movies Review: Street Dancer 3D

    Much like ‘ABCD 2’ (2015), this Remo D’Souza dance film packs in some amazing pieces of choreography, but falters on the plot front.

  • Yahoo Movies Review: Don't take 'Panga' with Kangana

    Kangana Ranaut is in top form in Ashwini Iyer Tiwari’s ‘Panga’, as a gifted kabbadi player (Jaya Nigam) who gives up on a promising sports career after motherhood. Happy to be the quintessential middle-class working mom, her heart yearns for the thrill of being on court once again. What initially starts as a joke to pacify her son, soon seems like a daunting, but not impossible, task for Jaya, who was the former captain of the Indian kabbadi team.

  • Yahoo Movies Review: Good Newwz

    While this film tries to make light of the situation, anyone who has ever tried to get pregnant will know that it is not easy.

  • Yahoo Movies Review: Dabangg 3

    Not as good as ‘Dabangg’, but not disappointing as ‘Dabangg 2’, either.

  • Decade in Review (2010-2019): Favourite Hindi Movies

    Here's our list of the Top 10 films that weren't blockbusters but struck a chord with the audience.

  • Yahoo Movies Review: Mardaani 2

    Rani sinks her teeth into a role which heavily relies on her ability to power this story.

  • Yahoo Movies: 'Chhapaak' trailer review

    'Chhapaak' is based on the real life story of acid attack survivor - Laxmi Agarwal. Laxmi was attacked when she was only 15 years old but she refused to be a victim.

  • 'Panipat' Review: Epic disappointment

    Gowariker's 'Panipat' is just a routine retelling of a historical event. Watch complete review:

  • Yahoo Movies Review: 'Marjaavaan'

    Director, Milan Zaveri, who has co-written deplorable adult comedies, like ‘Masti’ and ‘Great Grand Masti’, and also directed films like ‘Mastizaade’ and ‘Satyameva Jayate’, decides to exploit a tried and tested Bollywood formula to make this highly missable action film. Sidharth Malhotra plays Raghu, the right-hand man of a mafia don Anna (played by Nassar), who has a heart of gold, but having been born a “lawaaris” (orphan) has had no option but to live a life of violence. Raghu’s arch rival is Anna’s son, a vertically challenged Vishnu (Riteish Deshmukh).