When it comes to the visualisation part, Sanjay Leela Bhansali always go one step further with lavish sets, elegant and colourful frames with lot of songs & dance. All in all it will be a film rich and high in production values. His latest film Bajirao Mastani, a period drama has everything mentioned above in the true Bhansalian style.
Bajirao Mastani is a film with soul backed by powerful performances, excellent background score and couple of well choreographed war sequences. Even though these factors compensate for the lagging post-interval portion, one gets a feel of exhaustion once the final reel runs.
I am not taking any credits away from SLB who has conceptualised a magnum opus that falls short of that but still is a watchable film for its artistic and quality value.
The film which is set in the eighteenth century revolves around Maratha General Bajirao Bhallal Bhat who fought and won many battles making the Maratha empire a strong and powerful one. In one such battle, he helps Bhundelkhand Maharaja whose Kingdom was about to be invaded by another ruler. During this war, Bajirao win over the heart of Mastani who is the daughter of Bhundelkhand.
Against the wishes of his wife Kasibhai, his mother and the Brahmin community, Bajirao marries Mastani. The film basically show the efforts put in by Bajirao in giving a status equal to his first wife for his second wife too.
Bhansali and his scripting team should have taken little more care in avoiding the dullness and overdose of melodrama that creep in after the halfway mark. There are many cliches typical of the director's usual pattern of presentation but those cliches only enlighten the feel of the film.
As mentioned the cliches are mostly in the form of grand sets, beautiful frames, songs and dance which all are most common in an SLB film.
The biggest contributor to this film are the performances. Director has been successful in extracting the best out of all the actors including the supporting casts.
To be honest, I was not expecting something extra from Ranveer Singh. But the actor in him surprised me. As Bajirao Bhallal, the guy has shown lot of maturity and sincerity to come out with flying colours. Watch him out in those final stages that really show his calibre as an actor and how far he has improved.
Deepika as Mastani was upto the task and has taken lot of pain and effort in portraying the role assigned to her. The result is there for all of us to see. Priyanka Chopra was outstanding and the best among the heroines though she has little screen share compared to Deepika. Kasibhai was safe and secured in her hands. Tanvi Azmi as Bajirao's mother Radhabhai was powerful in her portrayal of the character she was enacting.
The actor who portrayed the role of Bajirao's brother was also a notable one who could make a big impact. Small small roles for actors like Milind Soman and Aditya Pancholi but nevertheless they were quite good too.
One cannot forget the contributions from the camera work of Sudeep Chatterjee who has beautifully created a visual treat with his work. Background score is excellent while the art and costumes department have done a remarkable job in giving the film a vibrant feel.
There are hiccups and flaws, there is lagness as the pace is lost towards the end but in spite of these cons, there are some pros too in this Sanjay Leela Bhansali movie. Its a watchable and a good historical film that had ample scope in it to be a far better one. My rating for Bajirao Mastani is three and a half out of five.
Rating - 3.5 / 5
It would have been a big miss had I not seen "CREED", the latest from the Rocky Franchise. Released few weeks back here, somehow I was hesitant to make a move to watch Creed. Strangely what kept be unmoved to give it a try is still not known to me.
Anyways coming to the film, in my view Creed is a perfect movie to follow the franchise of Rocky and perfectly fills in the boot of the Stallone starrers that was high in spirits, motivation, inspiration and energy. Creed quite perfectly fill in the gap created by Sylvester Stallone who is by now quite old to do anything as age has caught up with him. Michael.B.Jordan takes the baton from the aged superstar in a remarkable fashion.
The film has Adonis Donnie Johnson as the title protagonist who is actually the son of former heavyweight champion Apollo Creed. Coincidentally, Junior Creed hires Rocky Balboa as his trainer who was once a rival to his father but later turned out to be friends.
Adonis has the blood of his father and his passion is definitely boxing. He wants to earn a name for himself without using his famed surname and prove to the world that he is not a mistake. To achieve his dream and passion, he convince Rocky Balboa to help him.
I should say the film just like its predecessors offer lot of energy and action both inside and outside the ring. Though physically and health wise Rocky has lost it, in terms of motivation and giving inspiration to fight, he still has it in him to go for the ultimate. It is this spirit that keeps Junior Creed in better shape of mind till the very end.
The choreography of action needs no special words as it is the major highlight of Rocky series. True to its style, Creed retains the same punch and excitement keeping the audience on their toes for the entire duration.
Last of the fight, the twelve round bout between Adonis pitted against an experienced Ricky Conlan was an absolute delight to watch and the fights were looking brutal and had the feel of a real boxing match. The edits were too sharp that made it look so real.
Michael.B.Jordan perfectly fitted into the role of Adonis Creed while Sylvester Stallone as Rocky Balboa just rocked. This time Stallone had more to do on the acting side as the coach with lot of talking to do. Tessa Thomson as Bianca and the love interest of Adonis did her part quite well. Rest of the actors did the supporting part in a neat way.
Nice cinematography and perfect cuts required for this genre of a film. Background music was also giving a pumping feel to lift the overall mood.
We have been seeing Rocky Balboa rocking the boxing arena through the franchise for decades. Creed is the perfect movie to come out following the footsteps and legacy of the Rocky series.
Overall, a well crafted, action packed and emotionally binding film from Ryan Coogler. If you are a keen and an ardent follower of the Rocky series, my advise is you shouldn't miss out Creed. The rating is four out of five.
Rating - 4 / 5
One could easily identify the zone where director Rohit Shetty belongs if we are to take a quick glance through all of his films for which he has wielded the megaphone. Famous for mass masala entertainers, it would be foolish of anyone to expect something classy even if its a love story bringing back one of Bollywood's greatest romantic pair into their safe zone.
His latest film Dilwale is no different either . Following a similar tone of his previous flicks, this SRK starrer apart from the massy substance on offer and also the nostalgic factor suffer from bad writing and poor presentation.
On the nostalgic factor mentioned above, I was referring to the lead pair of Sharukh Khan and Kajol who were last seen together five years back in "My Name is Khan". Their onscreen chemistry doesn't need any endorsement from anyone now since they are a proven pair sharing unbeatable onscreen chemistry. But sad to say that they could not save the film and their chemistry was very limited and the blame baggage should definitely go to the director here.
The story has romance between Raj and Meera that is more than a decade old. We are taken fifteen years back on how they met and fall for each other. The whole plot is built around two underground mafia gang lead by actors Kabir Bedi and Vinod Khanna. Into the present, we also have youngster Varun Dhawan (brother of Raj) with his romantic track that was far from convincing either.
Dilwale begins on a shaky note with the first one hour just wandering about without much excitement introducing the audience to various characters and of course the flash back part of the storyline.
Rohit was able to bring about some element of life into the film after the initial one hour infusing energy through action, comedy and songs shot in a colourful way. Those are all areas in which he is an expert. But the overall packaging and writing cannot save Dilwale from sinking.
Talking about comedy, it did not work out completely well with some of the jokes falling apart without any impact while some could evoke good laughter. The thing is we had comedians Johny Lever, Sanjay Mishra and Boman Irani partly in a negative role to make us laugh. If the writing lets down the film, what can these actors do!!
One could never expect the magic of DDLJ and the magical screen presence of the lead pair to do wonders again. As a romantic entertainer, Dilwale suffer mainly due to a badly written screenplay with a no substance storyline. I am disappointed though I was not expecting a miracle from Rohit Shetty to show something special. The rating is two out of five.
Rating - 2 / 5