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Angels and Demons – Movie Review

I felt vaguely unsatisfied after watching the Da Vinci Code. I have no such complaints about Angels and Demons. It was a solid 138 minutes of unflagging action, with strong performances and really good camerawork and editing.

I read the book long ago and, must confess, found it much better than its better-known sibling, The Da Vinci Code. What is required, like it is when viewing any work of fiction, is a wilful suspension of disbelief, and this work asks for oodles of suspension. The now famous professor, Robert Langdon, played again by Tom Hanks, is back, and this time is asked to take on an old enemy of the Roman Catholic Church, the Illuminati.

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Anukokunda Oka Roju

now that you are in hyd.. you should check out a telugu movie called anukokunda oka roju
I simply loved it .. probably the best Indian movie I’ve seen in a long, long time..

These words, casually typed by Karthik while we were chatting a couple of months ago, sent me on a hunt around the city for a DVD of the movie. Since my Telugu is not really that good (okay, I don’t know anything beyond champesthaanu and me kosam!), I had to find one with English subtitles.

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More Movies

Watched over the last last month were two more movies: The French Lieutenant’s Woman and Adaptation.

The French Lieutenant’s Woman was innovatively made, two almost parallel storylines alternating with each other. It was quite gripping, and the performances were quite good. The endings, while not exactly a surprise, still complemented the entire movie. All in all, an enjoyable watch.

Adaptation, on the other hand, started out brilliantly, proceeded well, before nastily spiralling out of control in the last twenty minutes. Good performances by Nicholas Cage, Meryl Streep and Chris Cooper. Worth watching, but be prepared for a less than satisfactory ending. read more

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Bad Movies

If you had read my lament a few posts back about watching bad movies and wondered what provoked it, here is the answer.

Usually, when we go to the DVD rental shop, Vidya makes the final decision on whether or not a particular movie is to be rented. We each of us pull out a few, and from that she chooses. Her choices are usually good, and both of us enjoy them.

Last week, I ended up alone at the shop as Vidya was working late. After looking around for a while, I picked up Kung Fu Hustle – which I knew Vidya would never watch, and Albert Brooks’ Looking for Comedy in the Muslim World, one that I hoped would be watchable. Both turned out to be terrible choices. Albert Brooks’ wooden portrayal with a bunch of stereotypes so hopeless they weren’t even funny made it a struggle even to get to the end of the movie. I never got a chance to finish watching Kung Fu Hustle as Vidya was too disgusted with it. For the first time, we returned a movie without actually fully watching it. read more

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Puriyadha Pudhir

My apologies to the non-Tamil bloggers out there – this post is entirely about a Tamil movie we watched on my birthday.

Somehow, Vidya and I ended up watching Puriyadha Pudhir on KTV on my birthday. To my delight, I enjoyed the movie – right from the start, where K.S. Ravikumar enigmatically says, “Aah, I have escaped” when he is subdued by policemen and locked up in a prison cell, till the end, where the selfsame Ravikumar exhorts us not to share the ending with anyone.

And of course, I finally got to watch the legendary scene where Raghuvaran says “I know” 16 (or 27 or 36 or whatever number takes your fancy) times. The movie was fast-paced, except for the silly dancing by Anand Babu, which were downright comical. The narrative was good and the editing tight. Out of make-up, Rekha looked the best I’ve seen her look, and a much-younger and more dashing Sarath Kumar plays a tiny role as Inspector Sharath. read more

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Superman Returns – Oh What a Bore!

Stuporman Bore – that’s what Superman Returns turned out to be.

Vidya and I were excited when we saw the trailers – Brandon Routh looked like Superman, and the action seemed promising. So off we rushed to buy tickets for the day show on the first Saturday it was showing.

Unfortunately we could get only first class tickets, and what an experience it proved to be. The sound system at Sathyam was shot – you could hear none of the softer spoken dialogues (of which there seemed to be an inordinate profusion), while the loud action sequences were cacophonic. read more

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The Perfect Murder – Finished!

Just finished watching the Perfect Murder. It was a thoroughly enjoyable movie, though Vidya didn’t care much for it. Visually very rich, the movie shows you Mumbai like you’ve never seen it – maybe this Mumbai exists only in the world of Inspector Ghote.

The acting seems stilted at the beginning because you find Indian actors in Indian settings speaking English. After you get used to it though, the going is very easy. Narrative-wise, one could argue that the portrayal is rather ridiculous and caricature-like. But this keeps it from getting too slow or boring. Especially so is the part where Inspector Ghote and his informant rescue Svenssen using a band of marauding woman demonstrators. read more

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Movies Galore!

Over the past few days, we watched the following movies:

Final Destination
Started out okay, and the premise seemed to be good. Though the ending was a bit flat, it still did not push the movie to B status.

Final Destination 2
This one started, progressed and ended as a B movie. No pretence of being anything other than a sequel, and quite repetitive.

Absolutely hilarious. Two thumbs up all the way. Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels was better, but this one is pretty damn good too!

Russia House
I enjoyed this – it was rather like reading a book. Sean Connery was perfect as the not-too-sober British publisher, but Michelle Pfeiffer, though she seems to have tried very hard, is not convincing in her role as Katya. Maybe, if they had got a Russian actress to play Katya, it would have been better. Rather like Julie Delpy in Before Sunrise and Before Sunset (both great movies that I enjoyed immensely). read more

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Hitchcock’s Rope

Vidya and I watched Hitchcock’s Rope yesterday. It was a tense, taut thriller, very reminiscent of a stage play. Powerful performances, a wonderful premise, suspense that grips you every minute of the movie – classic Hitchcock!

There was no action, most of the plot developments taking place in conversation and in the minds of the actors. What really impressed us was that a movie made almost sixty years ago, with not even a fraction of the technologies available today, could hold us in our seats for 80 minutes straight, not letting our attention stray for even a moment! read more

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Superstar Rajinikanth!

Here is a tale that was forwarded to me:

There is a popular story saying that wherever you go, you will find at least one Rajinikanth fan

Here is an interesting new story!

Rajinikanth was bragging to Kamal one day, “You know, I know everyone there is to know. Just name someone, anyone, and I know them.”

Tired of his boasting, Kamal called his bluff, “OK, Rajini how about Tom Cruise?” “Sure, yes, Tom and I are old friends, and I can prove it,” Rajini says.

So Rajini and Kamal fly out to Hollywood and knock on Tom Cruise’s door, and sure enough, Tom Cruise shouts “Thalaiva! Great to see you! You and your friend come right in and join me for lunch!” Although impressed, Kamal is still skeptical. read more

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