masaan film poster

Feminist Film Review – Masaan – A story of desiring bodies

masaan film poster 2Update: Kindly read the full review on Women’s Web as I have an exclusivity contract with them so cannot share the full review here.

There were at least three points in the film when I almost started weeping, there were points where I was anxious about what was going to happen and finally when I came out of the theatre I had a heart full of emotions but the mind was calm, as calm as the river Ganga depicted in the last scene of the film. The feeling was of surrender to the circle of ‘life and death’ of ‘loss and gain’. No more words, no more tears no more grief just sail away with the river and see where it takes you, to the confluence or to the other side of life. Continue reading “Feminist Film Review – Masaan – A story of desiring bodies”

Self styled censorship and moral policing on Indian TV

Self styled censorship and moral policing on TV just boils my blood. The other day they censored the word ‘sex’ and blurred out a woman’s cleavage in the film Queen. On VH1 they routinely censor the most harmless everyday language and scenes. In a song by Maroon 5 (Maps) they blurred out the face of an accident victim. In another song by Meghan Trainor (All about that Bass) they censored the word ‘Booty.’ But on Bollywood music channels they have no qualms in playing the song ‘Punjabiyan di Tooh’ (from Gori Tere Pyaar Mein). Tooh and Booty means the same … Continue reading Self styled censorship and moral policing on Indian TV

Rani Mukherjee’s Aiyyaa – Preview – Comedy of a Woman’s carnal desires

Rani Mukherjee Aiyyaa comedy of a woman's carnal desiresMy readers would be happy to know that the writer’s block has been lifted. A lot of writing is coming out these days, some personal, some for the book ‘This Is My Truth‘ and some for this space, my blog. The book hasn’t found a publisher yet, but am writing it anyway. These days if your content is good you can self publish and it would sell. The obsession for the TV Show Ishti Kutum continues as the show has become even more interesting. The that I was writing on it is going good, it is going to be a very long one, you all need to have patience to read it. Continue reading “Rani Mukherjee’s Aiyyaa – Preview – Comedy of a Woman’s carnal desires”

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Feminist Film review: ‘Fashion’ and other Bhandarkar flicks

Madhur Bhandarkar makes films for the dummies. In the wake of the release of yet another cliched film for the dummies, Heroine, I am republishing my feminist film review of Fashion and other Bhandarkar Films. I have not seen Heroine yet, but I can predict what’s is it about.

Continue reading “Feminist Film review: ‘Fashion’ and other Bhandarkar flicks”

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Movie review – Luck: A demented psychopathic plot with sloppy direction

luck-movie-1I don’t know what bad ‘luck’ had befallen upon me last night that I went to see the latest release ‘Luck’. What bad karma did I do in my past life that in this life I was destined to go through such a disturbing movie? Never before in my entire life did I walk out of a cinema hall without finishing the movie. No matter how stupid a film has been I have seen it till the end but this film hurt my sensitivity as a human being so much that I couldn’t sit there anymore.

What kind of demented psychopathic sadist must have made such a film? The film was so disturbing from ethics and human rights point of view and so dumb and sloppy from cinema point of view, I don’t even have words to express. To put it in one line – a soul less mash up of crazy demented ideas conceived while smoking something funny.

The movie plot is about a betting industry set up by a guy called Mussa (played by Sanjay Dutt) which puts money on people’s death. I have seen many violent films but the insensitivity of such a concept was so disturbing it beats them all. Let me describe just one scene for you – So you have this one big hall where hundreds of people are betting on the players (various characters played by Shruti Hasan, Imran Khan, Ravi Kishen, Mithun Chakraborty etc.) like in a typical horse racing ground. On a big screen in that hall you have images of the players standing in a desert somewhere. A message flashed “Betting closed, Game begins.” The game is that all these players will have to jump off from a helicopter 2000 ft above a hilly terrain, each one is wearing a parachute but only 6 out of 9 parachutes are in working condition, the players don’t know who picked what. The people who’ve put their money on the players are watching anxiously on the big screen to find out who lives and who dies. Suddenly one of the player’s parachute fails and he crashes into a tree. His dead body is shown hanging from the tree on the big screen, camera moves and cash money is shown to move from hand to hand amongst the betters.

Continue reading “Movie review – Luck: A demented psychopathic plot with sloppy direction”

Sanjukta Basu Live Blogging: the best in India

Live Blog: My reaction to Filmfare awards ceremony 2009

Sanjukta Basu Live Blogging: the best in India

8th March 7.45 pm

Happy woman’s day to all my readers. A male friend said this day is to be wished only to woman. I said no, you can wish it to men too, its like independence day. Wanted to write a post on W-Day but was outside most of the time so couldn’t.

I don’t know how much and how many of my readers like reading these live blogs I write but I love writing them.

Today I am live blogging my reaction to the Filmfare Awards ceremony 2009 as I watch the recorded telecast on Sony TV. Filmfare is a necessary evil, never a fan but still I end up watching the ceremony every year. I mostly watch it keep assuring myself that my icon Aamir is so right in boycotting this award completely.

Right now Mini Mathur and Murari talking to the stars on red carpet. The show would be anchored by Imraan Khan and Ranbir Kapoor. As always a lot of humor is expected.

Continue reading “Live Blog: My reaction to Filmfare awards ceremony 2009”

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‘Rock On’ grows on you

Disclaimer: This is not a film review.

When I really like a movie, the urge to share with the world why I liked it is uncontrollable. But when I write it down and publish on my blog I get the blame of being a hypocrite, they say, “oh you keep saying we don’t need film reviewers or critics in the world, people should just decide for themselves what films they want to watch, and now why are you writing a review yourself”

In my defense I am only trying to share why I liked the film. Nothing more really. I believe its never wrong to appreciate something. But it’s not always right to criticize. So you’d notice I don’t write about the films I don’t like. It’s like spreading positive energy and curbing the negative thoughts.

Anyway since this whole review writing business is all so tricky, I and good friend Saurabh, we decided to do something interesting this time. Thing is, I liked ‘Rock On’ and he didn’t. I give my reasons why I liked and he’d follow up with his reasons of why he didn’t like. We present you with an opinion and a counter opinion on Rock On and leave you with your free will and sound judgment to decide for yourself whether to go for it or not. It can’t get any more transparent than this.

Rock on – thumbs up by Sanjukta

Tell you what, loved sitting through the entire film. It’s a different kind of movie watching experience in Bollywood. For most of it you feel like you are in a rock concert, you are continuously tapping your feet, you can barely sit still, you feel like putting your hands up in the air and sing along with the rock stars from the rock band ‘Magic‘ performing on stage. It’s a great musical experience.

Continue reading “‘Rock On’ grows on you”

Ugly Aur Pagli: Worked for me

Before you get misguided by the high minded critics in town who fail to appreciate simple things in life and movies, who look for reasons under the earth and beyond the sky to say bad things about any and every movie ever made unless they are paid well enough to say otherwise OR unless they are member of the ‘Bollywood’s Mutual Admiration Society’ or ‘Star Power Sucker’s Club’, and before you fall victim of the vicious process of letting someone else decide what film you should and shouldn’t watch…let me tell you, please give this week’s release ‘Ugly Aur Pagli‘ … Continue reading Ugly Aur Pagli: Worked for me

Sanjukta Basu Live Blogging: the best in India

Live Blog: Filmfare Awards 2008

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8.20 pm

I am watching the Filmfare awards ceremony right now on Sony TV. I specially earmarked this evening for this show. Have got some popcorns that I made in the microwave and some apple juice. Well Juice because I’ve already have had enough of beer in the afternoon.

Am I a big fan of Filmfare. Hell No. All my life I have hated filmfare, but could never ignore this necessary evil.

Continue reading “Live Blog: Filmfare Awards 2008”

Taare Zameen Par - review by Raja Sen and Rangan Baradwaj ripped apart by Sanjukta Basu

Taare Zameen Par | My response to Raja Sen’s Review

I find film critics arrogant and snobbish. They tend to write bad things about all movies and even if it’s a great movie they’ll write something bad just for the heck of it, just to show that they are NOT biased.

Raja Sen’s review on Rediff. I have a lot of problems with the review. He writes…

It is hard to know, as a director, when there can be too much of a good thing. Khan indulges himself with his nice little visual flourishes significantly in the first half, to the point of repetition. There is the clever device of the child — being shunted off to boarding school against his desperate pleas — making a flipbook which shows a family with one kid moving away, as the pages turn. It’s a strong, simple touch, yet Khan chooses to show it to us again and again, showing the audience the flip book every time any character sees it.

I’ll tell you why. Not many among Aamir’s target audience would notice what’s happening with the flip book at the first or second go. What is a flip book to begin with, not many parents know. Continue reading “Taare Zameen Par | My response to Raja Sen’s Review”