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Medium Spicy, Review: Only medium, not spicy

Medium Spicy, Review: Only medium, not spicy This had to be a new take on love. In its promotion, the makers of the film Medium Spicy (in Marathi language) quoted from William Shakespeare’s all-time love classic, Romeo and Juliet, “Love is heavy and light, bright and dark, hot and cold, sick and healthy, asleep and awake – it is everything except what it is!” – Act 1 Scene 1. The movie begins with a reunion party of former catering college students, where liquor ...

IFFI 52, 051: Towards better IFFIs

IFFI 52, 051: Towards better IFFIs What makes a good international film festival? Some criteria. Good international films Good Indian films Good scheduling Good international participation Good fringe events Good ‘festival’/festivities Good venues, with good projection Good budget Good (long-term) independent directors and heads of departments Good and early planning Quality of films selected is a reflection of the ...

IFFI 52, 047: 2021 will have been the last IFFI where FD participated and contributed

IFFI 52, 047: 2021 will have been the last IFFI where FD participated and contributed At every IFFI, the Films Division (FD) of the Union Government of India’s Ministry of Information and Broadcasting (MIB), plays a prominent role. It provides technical support and runs a stall, among other things. Along with the Directorate of Film Festivals (DFF), the Children’s Film Society of India (CFSI) and the National Film Archive of India (NFAI), it is to be merged with the National Film ...

IFFI 52, 043: Indian Film Personalities of the Year

IFFI 52, 043: Indian Film Personalities of the Year “One Sky is less, bring me more skies”. Yes, this is what Prasoon Joshi, renowned lyricist and Chairperson, Central Board of Film Certification said on being presented the Indian Film Personality of the Year Award for 2021, at the closing ceremony of the 52nd International Film Festival, in Goa. The award has been conferred on him, for his contribution to cinema, popular culture and socially significant artistic work. Joshi sa...

Dilli Kaand, Review: Those that rape and those that gape

Dilli Kaand, Review: Those that rape and those that gape When a film is delayed six years in its release, its fate is more or less sealed. Dilli Kaand was launched in August 2015 and sees the light of day on 24 September 2021. Of course, the delay of the last 18 months can be attributed to the Covid 19 Coronavirus pandemic, when cinema-halls remained shut, but the six-year delay cannot be explained by Covid. Even now, cinema halls have only opened in some states of India, with conditions impo...

Sye Raa Narasimha Reddy, Review: Per capita

Sye Raa Narasimha Reddy, Review: Per capita “This Gandhi Jayanti, India unites to fight,” declares a large card on the trailer of Sye Raa Narasimha Reddy. Mohandas Karamchand ‘Mahatma’ Gandhi (born 02 October 1869) was the father of the nation and an apostle of peace and non-violence. ‘Jayanti’(in Hindi) refers to his 150th birth anniversary, which is being celebrated with many campaigns across the country, like  voluntary service to society, cleanline...

Three Billboards outside Ebbing, Missouri, Review: Rape, murder and other black grey comedy

Three Billboards outside Ebbing, Missouri, Review: Rape, murder and other black grey comedy Outdoor advertising is no longer so called. The 21st century buzz-word is ‘Out-of-Home medium’, OOH. There have been many claims about the efficacy of such advertising, but no one has so far professed that it can help galvanise a police force into speedy action. Welcome to Three Billboards outside Ebbing, Missouri, a 115-minute R-rated homicide drama that is reportedly dropping many clues a...

Magnum Opus Padmavati adds a, drops i, eyes release on 25th January

Magnum Opus Padmavati adds a, drops i, eyes release on 25th January It will now be called and spelt Padmaavat, from its original moniker of Padmavati. The deletion of the i is in deference to the wishes of many Indians who hold the folklore of Rani Padmavati very dear, and would not allow a film that shows the actor playing her dancing, midriff exposed, to be released. Protests led to a delay of eight weeks in rescheduling the release, and even now, entire states, like Rajasthan (where the st...

16th Third Eye Asian Film Festival: VIII

16th Third Eye Asian Film Festival: VIII Besides Marathi, Bengali language films saw fair representation at TEAFF. There were two Assamese films as well. Internationally, of course, we had a strong Iranian contingent. The festival was organised in December 2017 by the Asian Film Foundation and P.L. Deshpande Maharashtra Kala Academy, and co-organised by Prabhat Chitra Mandal and Akhil Bharatiya Marathi Chitrapat Mahamandal. An annual event, it is supported by Department of Culture, Government...

16th Third Eye Asian Film Festival: VI

16th Third Eye Asian Film Festival: VI Three Marathi films are the focus of today’s post: Nati Khel, Nadi Vahate and Copy. They were shown as part of a package at that consisted of as many as eight films, the maximum in any language from any Indian language. TEAFF is organised by the Asian Film Foundation and P.L. Deshpande Maharashtra Kala Academy, and co-organised by Prabhat Chitra Mandal and Akhil Bharatiya Marathi Chitrapat Mahamandal. It is supported by Department of Culture, Gover...

A Bad Moms Christmas, review: Santa is a stripper

A Bad Moms Christmas, review: Santa is a stripper They don’t bother giving any back-stories, and none are needed in this sequel to the 2016 outing. Christmas and Bad Mom specialists (Bad Dads is coming) Jon Lucas and Scott Moore team-up once again to debrief what Christmas and happiness is all about, and span it across three generations of American families. A Bad Moms Christmas peppers its script with a dozen stereo-types, and then proceeds to revel in ripping them apart, in the most i...

Atomic Blonde, Review by Siraj Syed: Blonde, Lorraine Blonde

Atomic Blonde, Review by Siraj Syed: Blonde, Lorraine Blonde “Bond, James Bond” is the most famous self-introduction in spy movie history, courtesy Sean Connery playing Ian Fleming’s Cold War time British secret agent 007. Fifty-five years on, Charlize Theron has picked a graphic novel by Anthony Johnston to invent herself as Lorraine (blonde) Broughton, the present day ‘equivalent’ of not only Bond, but John Wick and Jason Bourne, with a dash of Mad Max, severel...

Siraj Syed reviews Anaarkali of Arrah: Item girl--“Spite ’em girl, Bite ’em girl”

Siraj Syed reviews Anaarkali of Arrah: Item girl--“Spite ’em girl, Bite ’em girl” Ten minutes into this loud and raw film, you know you will root for the protagonist, an item girl plying her art in Arrah, a small town in the eastern Indian state of Bihar. An item girl is a woman who wears garish costumes, sings, dances, cavorts, titillates and tantalises on stage, to a public, sing-along audience, that joins her full-of-double-entendre lyrics, lusts after her and drool...

Siraj Syed reviews Raees: Contentious content, alias “Don’t call me Battery”

Siraj Syed reviews Raees: Contentious content, alias “Don’t call me Battery” Ra.One did it. Don 2 had done it. Raees, wherein he plays a Don once more, adds to his raeesy. Superstar ShahRukh Khan must be a happy man these days, heading in the right direction, hitting the road to Hitsville.Touted as the block-buster of the year, Raees, about a small-time bootlegger who wrangles his way to the top and becomes not only raees (Urdu for ‘rich’) but filthy rich, has no...
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