Archive for September, 2010
By Taran Adarsh, October 1, 2010 – 10:12 IST
One, it’s difficult to conceptualize and execute a film like ROBOT.
Two, when Rajnikant’s name comes in the credits, one cannot hear anything for the next two minutes. His name is greeted with a thunderous applause, whistles yells and cheers. Such is the charisma of this superstar. Rajnikant is the Boss. The real Badshaah.
ROBOT, directed by Shankar, is a Rajnikant Express that transports you to a world you can’t envision. Rajnikant’s feats are legendary by now. In ROBOT, he goes a step further. The Robot in ROBOT not only follows orders of his creator, but also cooks, fights, romances and wonder of wonders, has a lengthy conversation with a mosquito and scan loads of books/magazines and an entire telephone directory in a second. Yes, you read it right!
|BY BOLLYWOOD HUNGAMA.COM
That’s not all, this Robot is Superman + Spiderman + Terminator + Godzilla, all rolled into one. There’s more to this Robot. It can replicate itself, wage a vicious battle, turn into an Anaconda or a monster ball and wipe off an entire army. Whew! Known for larger than life canvas, ROBOT is Shankar’s most expensive and if I may say so, his most imaginative film thus far. And who better than Rajnikant for the pivotal role!
Final word? A Rajnikant film is an event and this combo’s [Shankar - Rajnikant] new outing ROBOT is sure to strike like Tsunami. Let me make it short-n-sweet. If you miss ROBOT, it’s YOUR loss!
Location: Chennai 2010. Mission: Creating a robot Chitti. Purpose: To help the society. Development time: 10 years. Special Features: A human who is not born, but is created. He can dance, sing, fight, is water and fire resistant. He can do all that a human can and more. He feeds on electricity. He takes instructions literally. Where a human can lie to save himself, this robot cannot lie.
Where he has a razor sharp memory and can memorize an entire telephone directory by just running through the pages, he cannot understand human emotions. Dr. Vasi upgrades Chitti’s processor and simulates human emotions without realizing the repercussions. Chitti gets transformed. He can now feel and the first feeling that he discovers is Love. Will this love come in the way of Dr. Vasi’s purpose of creating Chitti? Will Dr. Vasi’s own creation destroy him?
A title like ROBOT automatically puts tremendous responsibility and pressure on the director’s shoulders. And ROBOT is not merely a display of VFX, but it also has soul, a story to tell. At first, ROBOT comes across as a clash between the virtuous [Rajnikant] and wicked [Danny Denzongpa]. But ROBOT changes gears in its post-interval portions as the focus shifts to the creator [Rajnikant] and his creation [Rajnikant].
It’s a Rajnikant film and it would be incomplete if his loyal fans don’t get to watch his stylish actions and feats. Thankfully, ROBOT showcases it all. He can glide on the railway tracks, run horizontally on a moving train, transform into an Anaconda, can swallow helicopters and even fire at people with his fingers, without using a pistol. These are truly clap-trap moments!
Even otherwise, the screenplay is really well penned and absorbing. While the film is a super ride from start to end, it’s the penultimate 25 minutes that leaves you awe-struck and speechless. You can’t imagine a Hindi film having such an out of the world climax. There will be pandemonium inside theatres when the climax unfolds, I am sure. Let me confess, it’s the mother of all climaxes!
Only thing, Shankar could’ve controlled the length of the film. It could’ve been shorter by at least 10 to 15 minutes, which includes doing away with a song or two. Of course, like all Shankar movies, the songs are filmed most imaginatively on exotic locales, but what’s the point of having songs if they act as speed breakers?
That Shankar ranks amongst India’s best directors is well known by now and ROBOT only cements the fact. His vision and execution of the difficult subject deserves the highest praise, in fact distinction marks. He not only dreams big, but the outcome is incredible too. A.R. Rahman’s music doesn’t compliment the content of the film, but like I pointed out earlier, every song has been filmed exquisitely. The action and chase sequences are outstanding [Yuen Woo Ping, action choreographer in the MATRIX and KILL BILL sequels, was the stunt coordinator]. Visual effects are spectacular [Stan Winston Studio, the studio behind JURASSIC PARK, PREDATOR, TERMINATOR, IRON MAN, AVATAR, provided the animatronics technology]. Cinematography captures the grand production values with precision. The locations of Austria, Machu Picchu in Peru, U.S.A. and Brazil only enhance the visual appeal of the film. The sets are mind-blowing. Dubbing is near-perfect.
ROBOT is a Rajnikant show from start to end. And no other actor, not from Bollywood at least, would be able to do what he does with such amazing ease. Aishwarya Rai Bachchan looks stunning and acts most convincingly. Danny Denzongpa is efficient, as always. The remaining actors enact their parts well.
On the whole, ROBOT is a crowd-pleasing and hugely mass appealing tale of android revolution with a thrilling plot, rich and imaginative screenplay, super action, astounding effects and most importantly, Rajnikant, who is the soul of the film. It’s the Big Daddy of all entertainers. Miss it at your own risk!
By Satish Sundaresan, September 29, 2010 – 16:56 IST
Anees Bazmee is super busy shooting his next comedy Thank You starring Akshay Kumar, Bobby Deol, Suniel Shetty, Celina Jaitly and Sonam Kapoor. The crew shot extensively in Canada recently. As expected, it’ll be a comic film from Bazmee.
If the aforementioned starcast wasn’t enough, director Anees Bazmee has now decided to add one more star to this already star studded film. Our sources reported that Vidya Balan recently shot for the film in Mumbai. Vidya however will be seen only in a cameo role as Akshay Kumar’s wife in Thank You. When Bollywood Hungama spoke to Anees Bazmee, he refused to comment on this.
With so much star power, Thank You definitely is one film to look forward to.
By Joginder Tuteja, September 30, 2010 – 11:20 IST
When it comes to the West, Akshay Kumar is known to be quite popular, especially amongst NRIs at Canada, UK and US. Now it appears that he is all set to expand his presence in the East as well, as evidenced in the recently held charity event at Hong Kong where he was a special invitee to come up with a performance. The event was organised by YFG (Young Executives Group).
Says a highly placed official from YFG, “Akshay put up a great show at the Grand Hyatt Hotel, Hong Kong. The show was such a resounding success, as it was never before seen in Hong Kong, and will be remembered for a long time to come!”
A sell out dinner show, it resulted in huge moolah coming in which went towards charity to The Community Chest of Hong Kong. The amount raised was approximately Rs. 1.63 crores (HK$2,800,000) and would form a part of the trust which is used to improve the life of a couple of million people living below the poverty line.
Confirms the official, “Yes, all credit goes to Akshay here. HK$2,800,000 is a huge amount by all standards and it was wonderful for him to fly over and give a spirited performance. Our guests were enthralled. We wish he comes in all over again. Not just is he a great professional, as evidenced in the way he performed, he is also a wonderful human being. Despite being a superstar in Bollywood, he came across as someone who is totally down to earth and rooted. It was amazing.”
Since this was a charity event, Akshay is said to have not charged any money for the performance.
Says a source, “That’s right; he didn’t charge a single penny for his visit to Hong Kong. Considering the fact that he was shooting for Tees Maar Khan till a day before and is now going all out to promote his next Action Replayy now, it is amazing that he squeezed out time for this event and that too without any monetary gains.”
Guess that’s what charity actually calls for!
By Bollywood Hungama News Network, September 30, 2010 – 12:55 IST
The MAMI committee led by Chairman Mr. Shyam Benegal and trustees Mr. Yash Chopra, Mr. Ashutosh Gowarikar, Mr. Amit Khanna, unveiled the line-up for the 12th annual Mumbai Film Festival (MFF), which consists of 200 films from 58 countries. This forms the largest number of films at any Film Festival ever. All the international films to be screened in the main sections of this year’s festival will be Indian, Asian or world premieres. Mumbai Film Festival is a Reliance Big Entertainment initiative and has the distinction of being the only international film festival in India to be organized by an independent body of practicing film professionals.
This year the festival films will be screened at Chandan Cinema (Juhu) and the adjacent five screens of PVR Juhu which will function as the Main Festival Complex, two screens in Metro BIG Cinemas (Marine Lines) & one screen in BIG Cinemas R City (Ghatkopar). The films in the International Competition for the first films of the directors will be judged by a five member International Jury headed by Academy Award winner, Hollywood-based filmmaker, screenwriter and producer Jane Campion.
The 12th Film Festival embraces a distinguished Jury. Jane Campion (Bright Star, In The Cut, The Piano, Soft Fruit), Tanya Seghatchian, the BAFTA Award-winning producer of Pawel Pawlikowski’s My Summer Love and produced the first four Harry Potter film series, Iranian filmmaker Samira Makhmalbaf, South Koren actress Yoon Jeong-Hee known as the greatest of South Korean stars and who recently starred in Lee Chang Dong’s acclaimed film “Poetry” screened in Cannes competition, National Film Award-winning Indian actor Suhasini Maniratnam.
MAMI’s 12th Film festival this year offers astounding total prize money of Rs. 1 crore. The festival will also hold interesting sidebar events and open forums daily organized by Independent Filmmakers Association.
Acclaimed Director, David Fincher’s Social Network will open the festival on October 21st, 2010.
MAMI will be honoring two outstanding film personalities with a presentation of distinctive awards. Honorees include: three times Academy Award Winner Oliver Stone, who will receive the International Lifetime Achievement Award and noted Indian film actor-director-screenwriter-producer Manoj Kumar, who will be honored with the Indian Lifetime Achievement Award at the awards function on 28th October, 2010.
By Joginder Tuteja, September 29, 2010 – 14:28 IST
There is Hollywood inspiration for Bollywood’s very own Allah Ke Banday which is aiming for a late October release. Since the film is a gritty tale of children taking to crime, it required an edgy narrative for itself. While debutant writer-director-actor Faruk Kabir promises that and a lot more in his dramatic affair, he has also created a graphic music video to lend out the right mood and feel of the film. The song is titled ‘Maula‘ and has been self confessedly designed on the same lines as Hollywood’s graphic tale Sin City (2005).
“‘Maula‘ is a visual interpretation of reality and through this song, I am giving a visual treat to my audience”, says Faruk who has patiently waited for a while before his debut flick became a reality by itself, “My target audience is youth and being a 28 year old myself, I am a part of this generation. I am making a contemporary film about today and for that I have lend an edgy hardcore energy to it. The music video of ‘Maula‘ has a lot of attitude to it and for that the graphic tone of Sin City came in handy.”
When released, Sin City had met with instant diverse reactions due to the graphic nature of violence and sex. The film, though carrying a comic undertone to it, was mainly for the adult segment of audience and went on to become a cult flick over a period of time. In fact it stands amongst one of the most studied movies of all times and had led to quite a few cheap imitations globally with far lesser success.
“Ours is a tribute to that genre though”, Faruk is quick to add, “You would see a distinct (Quentin) Tarantino touch to it, something which was a conscious approach. Of course the video is quite real and disturbing so it has to be seen with caution. I don’t mind that though; after all it was intentional.”
Making of this video was a challenge in itself for Faruk and his team, more so because Faruk is playing the double role of a director and actor here.
“The whole video has been shot on croma where we have created the entire backdrop pretty meticulously”, informs Faruk, “The video features Sharman and myself. Technically, it was a very challenging exercise and the song took around six months to be totally ready. While three months went into pre-production, the same amount of time went into post production as well.”
While Chirantan Bhatt has scored music for this song, Sarim Momin has written the lyrics. However, this is not the only music video that Faruk has shot for his flick. “That’s right”, says Faruk, “We have shot another music video with Kailash Kher. It is an association with UNICEF. This one took its own time to be done since it features children.”
Whoever said that it was a child’s play to make a film!
Faruk Kabir says it was a practical decision for him to step into the role as he knew the character really well
Prithwish Ganguly (BOMBAY TIMES; September 30, 2010)
Film-maker Faruk Kabir, who has also tried his hands at acting in his gritty underbelly movie Allah Ke Banday, that explores how children take to violence and the state of jail houses that hold child convicts in India, says acting happened to him by chance. “I had no one to act alongside my lead Vijay, played by Sharman Joshi, right up to the point when we were just days away from starting to shoot and we desperately needed someone. I had auditioned some known actors but they all wanted Sharman’s role. Since I was the only person who knew the character of Yakub really well, having researched extensively by meeting two children whose life experiences have greatly inspired the plot of the movie, my team and I thought that it was practical for me to step into the act as we couldn’t have delayed the shoot as we were walking on a really tight rope,” Faruk tells us.
The actor/director, who also boasts of having veteran actor Naseeruddin Shah in his movie, adds, “Sharman and Naseerji really helped me a lot during my process of being an actor. It’s good to work alongside great actors as you get inspired to give your best, too.”
Faruk adds that it was TOI’s constant coverage on child convicts and the state of their prisons that inspired him to take up the subject as his premise for the film. “From drugs to fights, everything is common in these jails. Once a child goes through such experiences, he or she is never the same again,” he ends.
Kareena Kapoor is pretty excited about her next release Golmaal 3. In Golmaal Returns, she was called Ekta and played the role of a daily soap housewife gone dotty.
Incidentally Tusshar Kapoor played her brother in the second version of the film. Now Kareena will be called Daboo in Golmaal 3.
Incidentally, Daboo is the pet name of Kareena’s father, Randhir Kapoor, in real life. Kareena insisted that her name should be Daboo in the film for emotional reasons.
When contacted, Kareena Kapoor confirmed the news and said, “Yes, it’s funny yet emotional for me. Daboo is the name of my character. She is a total chavanni chaap and Daboo being a fun name, it’s perfect.
I am thrilled as it’s my darling papa’s name and I hope it proves lucky for me. I am sure it will.”
We hope so too!
After patching up finally, Sajid Khan and Sajid Nadiadwala have decided to work on Housefull 2
All’s well between the two. The product of their patch up is a sequel to their earlier film, Housefull.
Says Nadiadwala, “Yes, Khan and I are working on Housefull 2. Akshay Kumar will star in the film. The rest of the cast is not decided.”
You wonder what happened to Khan’s film that he was making for Vashu Bhagnani, which had apparently angered Nadiadwala? Says Nadiadwala, “Khan’s association with Vashu hadn’t bugged me. In fact, Khan had asked me before moving over to Vashu’s film.
|Sajid Khan||Sajid Nadiadwala|
I told him that I had no problems, as long as he didn’t cast Akshay Kumar in it. For that’s what my three-film-deal with Khan is all about. His three films for me will have Akshay as an exclusive in them.”