Shadows of Time [2005]

Made by German film maker, Schatten Der Zeit [Shadows of Time] is a "German-Bengali film" shot in India ! Phew... confusing no?! Wondering why it hasn't released in India till now, besides screening in Goa International Film Festival.

The film is about Ravi [Sikandar Agarwal] a child laborer in carpet factory. Who saves Masha [Thumpa Das]- a co worker from being sold to a rich man and sends her to city of Calcutta. While Masha promises to wait for him at every full moon night in Shiva temple. Years passes, and adult Ravi [Prashant Narayanan] leaves his job to go to the city and find Masha [Tanishtha Chatterjee]. Somehow, after few visits to the temple, Masha stops going to temple because of a reason. Enter new woman in Ravi's life, Deepa [Tillotama Shome]. Twists and Turns, enter Yani Mishra [Irfan Khan]. The story takes further interesting turns.

Clicked !!

Well, as a part of Travel photograph contest by Blogadda and ; here are five entries from my pile of photographs. I am no a professional at photography, nor do I posses a nice sleek DSLR.. [wish I can :) ] but still, I feel sometimes my clicks do wonders. So here are my entries. Oh, and Thank You Blogadda for suggesting a topic to blog. Nice change for me :)

A Place near rapidly growing Ahmedabad. Most of the fields are occupied by builders, making difficult to for mother Earth to breath. Trees are getting vanished. Here is one alone tree, who stood since long, witnessing cruel changes of time.

I just love deserts. The salt deserts, the sand deserts or ice deserts. The view they have, you can see through horizons, the wide canvas. Love that feeling. Here is a pic from India's favorite desert - Jaisalmer. The camel ride at 4pm. Must be scorching hot, but worth for its scenery.

Another favorite place of mine. That is Jodhpur fort, and the 'Chhatri' you are seeing here is tomb of King or some member of royal family. What makes it more beautiful is the flying pigeon captured in the click ! Again, a barren tree standing by the tomb makes it interesting.

Jaisalmer fort is like a Desi-mall. Having fantastic little little shops of handicrafts. This frame consists many frames in it. With the background of old hand painted yellow wall, one surely gets instantly inspired to buy all of them, isn't it? And hey, that Bisleri hording is captured which I had no idea about. Showing both, modern and old worlds, maybe? :)

I couldn't resist to put up this wonderful pic taken at Mount Abu, Rajasthan. The 'tomato girls'. Yes, they were selling Tomato Salad. I denied buy their stuff when I was on my way to Turtle Rock. But the way they made me buy it, cute ! Then I came to know that they were doing it to fund their study. See the school bag near them. :) and smiles on their faces !

So, there, are my five entries for the contest. Tough to choose only five because our country has so many gorgeous things to love. The colors, the people and the places, indeed - Incredible India !
The contest is sponsored by

Vinnaithaandi Varuvaayaa [2010] : Just Love....nothing else.

Hell Yeah ! Great question there... So, here comes another from 'A film about films'. VTV ! "Vinnaithaandi Varuvaayaa' [Will you Cross the Skies for Me?]

This is a movie, which I can blindly suggest to people who love Romantic movies. Written and Directed by Gautham Menon- Vinnaithaandi Varuvaayaa is absolutely lovable tale of - Karthik & Jessie. Played by Silambarasan Rajendar and Trisha Krishnan.

As you know, I am not a regular watcher of Southie movies. Its been just a few movies I've seen so far. But I was so curious about this one, just because I've heard a lot about its music via my fellow Twitter friends. I came to know that Rahman has created a magical score for this one. So I got hold of the soundtrack, and believe me, the songs still can't get out from my head. Wonderful songs. For the first time I am listening to Tamil songs, and can't get enough. To Start off with - Hosanna.

Then absolutely touchy - Mannipaya sung by Shreya Ghoshal and Rahman. And Omanna Penne... and more. Just love all.
Oh, I was talking about the film, no?. VTV is story of a Hindu boy and a Christian Girl. Got the story? Father of the girl don't like boy from other caste seeing his girl. Menacing brother of heroine is also there. But hey... the cliches stop there. And fresh treatment starts. Story moves on with interestingly different track. How the girl denies facts though she's also in love, how further twists add more problems to life of these lovers and finally how destiny plays its role. Really refreshing storytelling. And underplayed lead characters makes it more special.

There is subtle charm in the love story which won me over. And can't get enough of re-watching the songs and the moments. Also what complements the movie most after music, is its breathtaking visuals. Beautiful Kerala captured with equally beautiful Trisha. See my thoughts spoken by Karthik....

Camera work is also different from usual stuff. Many scenes have hand-held camera like effects. Even the animation is used brilliantly in a song toward the end. To say in few words, the movie scores high with technical beauty.

As mentioned earlier, performances are underplayed, but leaves impact. Silambarasan has his own style of speaking, which I found interesting. While Trisha looks stunning in Saarees and plays her part flawlessly. It must be tough for her to play such character. A scene near finale, made me cry throughout Ten minutes of it. Just one word for the actors - Fantastic !

Steal it.. download it.. or buy it - but must watch it !

Magadheera : The XXL Experience

After my post about Southie movies, I got many recommendations to watch Magadheera [Telugu]. Also, Nicki's suggestion was always there. Another reason I was curious to watch this because many rumours going on in recent past about remake of this movie in Hindi with Hrithik and Aamir !! [I think now one would try to make such movie in Bollywood.] So I had to see this movie.

Directed by S. S. Rajamouli, Magadheera has everything 'large' in it. AS most of the Southies are. But this one got me hooked with all the visuals from the past. And if you give great visuals to me, I 'm always up for such movie. Didn't know that Ram Charan Teja is son of Chiranjeevi, untill he came in first song. And Kajal Agarwaal looks exceptionally good. Sigh...why southie actresses are so good that I fall instantly for them. :)

Magadheera is story of Harsha [Ramcharan] and Indu[Kaajal] who meet just by an accident. Harsha just can not find out what is there in Indu, that whenever he meets him, he gets to see images of past in his mind. Enter devil Raghubeer [Dev Gill] who wants to make Indu his wife. Soon Raghuber finds out about his past. What happened in 16th century and why he's getting attracted to Indu. Twists and turns in the story and things go 400 years back to 16th century where everything gets unfold. Mysteries get resolved.

I found the movie was lagging a little bit in first half, as the love story was under developed. unlike other mushy Southie movies I saw But some sparkling shots of beautiful Kaajal Agarwaal, and some mushy moments, it was watchable. And brilliant idea of putting crucial scene at opening shot of the movie, director made a really wise decision. That viewer gets hooked to know what had happened in past. Also the overall execution of things in 16th century, is mind blowing. History with dash of masala. A perfect combination for an entertaining movie. Oh, and in very few movies I saw a 'perfect' timing for intermission. I was like whistling on the entry of 'KaalBhairava' - the past avatar of Ramcharan. Huge sets of palaces are fantastic, I was surprised that all of them were actually 'sets', constructed in Ramoji Film city !! Also, both deserts of India, Rajasthan and Gujarat - were gorgeous on screen. Sigh... why I could not make it to see this on big screen.Ramcharan Teja's acted well. But looking at competition, I feel he needs to learn more dance steps. Kaajal was lovely in each frame [that's what a girl should be in "Hero's" film, right?] and the baddie, Dev Gill, was really BAD. Music, besides 'Dheera Dheera', none of the song I can remember now. May be because I'm new to these movies. Or may be causeDheera dheera 's picturisation was grandeur. I think Rahman could have done huge wonders for such movie.

A must watch if you love movies on Large canvas. Pure masala ! No matter its in a language other than Hindi.

Kites : Movie Review

Well, what can I say? When all the hype turn out valid, all the expectations are met, director Anurag Basu's 'Kites' left me speechless. Expectations were huge just because it's a Hrithik movie. And they have created such a hype around the movie, I was feared the movie can go all wrong. But thankfully, the case is not here.

Kites, is a shining example of technical brilliance meets perfect execution. I just loved the way story gets executed in parts, one by one sequences. In an order that is easy to engage the viewers. I don't know much about Hollywood [or any other movies, which sources says Kites is based upon]. But the storyline is interesting. So is the screenplay and editing - that in Two hours we get this ride. Technically movie is near perfect. Cinematography is breathtaking Everything, from Las Vegas to deserts of Mexico, looks amazing on screen. while action is mind blowing. somewhere the chase sequences looks stretched and seems repeating. And that makes second half, a little bit slow comparing to overall pace.

When Anurag is on board, you must expect story driven by music. Same case is here too. I was already hooked on the songs. But here, Salim-Sulaiman's background score amazed me. They are the best in business. And here, they have worked wonders with Latino. Songs are picturized beautifully. Hrithik's dance in 'Fire' blew away everyone. All of us were shouting throughout the song while getting amazed by his moves. Such a gifted guy ! I want to watch the movie again, just to see that song.

All the performances are good. Hrihik, of course, can never go wrong. He looks dashing and acts well too. I was curious about Barbara Mori - but she also has done a nice job. Thankfully, like any other Indian movies, here she does not have to speak Hindi. Movie is subtitled at many places, just to keep dialogues natural. So she mostly speaks Spanish. Oh, and did I mention she looks WOW !!! ... While Kangna has nothing much to do, bad guys Kabir Bedi and Nick Brown does their job in regular manner. Ah, talking about passion and chemistry Hrithik+Barbara shares, is superb. Would definitely love to see this sizzling pair again on screen. There are not many intimate scenes, but still you can feel the passion all around. Power of perfect direction maybe. :)

Final word - must watch it. No, its not a Hollywood movie [as they are saying it], just a Bollywood movie with fantastic production values and direction.

Cheers !

Guilty Pleasures : Top 5 Thursday

Guilty pleasures eh?! There are many, many yaar. As I'm a hopeless movie watcher, and [once upon a time] TV maniac, I have so many guilty pleasures. But this is T5T ! The Top Five Thursday, [started by Christy] So here are my Top Five Guilty pleasures.

SONG: Tandoori Nights [Karzzzz]
I know Himessh will be choice of many among us. No matter how bad he sings, but don't know why this song get stuck in my head. I remember when the song was out, I was used to shout out and sing 'Rabba Rabba meri jaaaaan jale..jale...jaleee....jalee...'. And many of the colleagues were telling me to take medicines if my a** was burning :P Still, today, I love to sing this aloud while riding my bike. Coz no one can listen [identify] me wearing helmet. So my head is safe then, from rotten tomatoes.

SINGER: Annu Malik
Ah well, Not Himesh bhaiyya again. I admire Annu ji for being the original besoora voice. Another kahani - I was singing his album's song 'Dhuan Dhuan ho raha hai sama' - and my best pal said 'you sound exactly the same as Annu' !! OMG !! I was shattered to hear that. So I started singing a Shankar Mahadevan song [I was in dreams that I sound like him :)] But again, just like Annu ji in Indian Idol, My dearest friend told 'Yaar you 'Do' sound like Annu only'. Sigh...then, I started singing 'ek garam chai ki pyaali ho...'

GENRE: Horror
Just any kind of horror movie, I am always up to watch it. No matter if its thrashed by critics. Like recently I liked Phoonk 2, Loved Shaapit and also liked Agyaat !!! No matter how cliched the movie is, throw some spooks in it, and I would enjoy it !!! One more personal secret - I was watching Exorcist - 4 alone in my room. All lights off. Suddenly a scene with wild dogs came up and I ran to switch on the lights. Similar case happened while watching Grudge. I changed my sitting position, just because I was sitting next to a window - fearing someone's hands will come up from behind.

FILM : Saawariya
To 98% ppl around me, its a crap movie. And to me, its one of my lifetime favorite one. Love everything about it. Spectacular visuals, serene soundtrack, fantastic acts by leads. And oh, the beauty Sonam !! How can I deny all of these? No wonder I went to hall, 3 times to see this on big screen. Also the DVD is part of my precious collection.

ACTOR : Harman Baweja !!!!!!
No, don't faint please. Yes, he was bad, bad in Lovestory 2050. But at some places he shown sparks. And oh, he dances well. But I really liked his performance in Whats Your Raashee?. I mean, he played his character as he should. Wonder why that movie got bad reviews. After WYR, I'm surely looking forward to his 'Its My Life' [remake of Bommarillu] with Genelia. Well, I know there is no replacement of Sidhu, but lets see, how this shapes up.

So, readers, what are your Top 5 guilty pleasures?

Image Courtesy :

Sàlo and Nekromantik : The Yuckfest

Since last few days, I was watching Horror and weird movies. Weird, yes. Someone twitted a link to most disturbing movies of all time. So that got me curious. So got some of those movies from the net.

First one was 'Sàlo: 120 days of Sodom'. Its an Italian movie directed by Pier Paolo Pasolini [huh..!]. Banned in most of the countries, this European movie is a shear piece of bullshit. Literally speaking - human shit. The story takes place in Republic of Sàlo, Fascist-occupied portion of Italy in 1944. Where 4 men of power decides to kidnap 9 boys and 9 girls to satisfy their pervert and sadistic needs. I just couldn't get why the maker has made such movie. was it to symbolize what was going on at holocaust or the fascist corruption. Movie goes on with each and every kind of torture on the victims, even eating the human shit is glorified like a grand supper. YUCK !

Next, I dared to see after, was Nekromantik. A movie based on Necrophilia - a mental disease in which patient gets sexually attracted to corpses ! Yes, the dead bodies ! Directed by Jörg Buttgereit, this German film is another scariest, yuckiest movie I have seen till date. Story deals with a couple's life who are always interested in Bloodbath, having sex with dead body and killing pets. Ewwww.. The the climax is goriest part of the movie. I would never ever recommend this movie to anyone. Watch it only if you want to see human meat in frying pan, people bathing in blood and entrails of a cat and lots of blood all over in each scene.

Phew, then I thought now I should go back to my beautiful world of romantic movies. So there, I watched Vinnaithaandi Varuvaayaa [Tamil]. And absolutely loved it. Hope I can put up a review soon.

Raajneeti : Music Review

Looking at past few movies, I wasn't looking forward at Prakash Jha's Rajneeti, in terms of good music. Cause he always emphasize on drama part more, than songs. But here, with as little as only four tracks, Rajneeti is an interesting album. With each song composed/written by different artists.

Album opens with a typical Pritam/Irshad Kamiil number sung by Mohit Chauhan & Antara Mitra [the Indian Idol girl??]. 'Bheegi si Bhaagi si' reminds of Pritam's earlier work like 'Khuda ya khair' and 'chalu mein'[de dana dan]. My first reaction was not so good for this track, but its Mohit who made me listen to it again, and now I'm liking it.

Next up is most famous track of the album. 'Mora Piya'. Both Aadesh Shrivastava and Sameer surprise a big time. Never have we heard such fantastic track from both. Aadesh impressed earlier in 'Kasak [Chhodo Naa Yaar]. But with this track he scores higher. Lovely rendition by him and backing up by Shashi & Rosalie Nicholson. While in another version [say remix!] Kavita Seth is wasted in fast beats.

Little bit disappointment there for me in third track. Looking at its creators Shantanu Moitra and Swanand Kirkire, something extraordinary is always expected. But 'Ishq Barse' is not their regular kind of work. Its a North Indian mujra+club song which is regular in Prakash's movies. No doubt demand of the story must be there for such track, but personally I did not like it much. Though experiments with words is quite interesting with 'atkan chatkan...' the childhood rhyme. And the line 'bole man ta ra ra ra' gets easily stuck in head.

But soon I got overwhelmed listening to 'Dhan Dhan Dharti' [Call of the soil] sung by none other than Shankar Mahadevan, penned by Gulzar saab. Surprisingly, closing my eyes, i thought this must be composed by Shankar-Ehsan-Loy. But no, its Wayne Sharpe ! The guy who won Best Background score for Gangaajal. Absolutely outstanding composition he has got for this one.

The song starts with tune exactly similar to 'Vande Mataram'. [not the Rahman one, yaar]. Brilliant use of our National song. And soon it picks up with wonderful words flowing through superb music arrangement. Got goosebumps all over by the vocals, words and sound. Fantastic !!!! Biggest highlight for the album. The song repeat as a Reprise sung by Sonu Nigam, but it fades against prowess singing of Shankar.

My Picks : Dhan Dhan Dharti, Mora Piya