Movie Review- Meri Pyaari Bindu

Standard

Meri Pyaari Bindu.jpg

It’s been a week since I saw the movie, and I can’t get through the title without a huge smile creeping on my face. I remember the scenes, the ending especially, and the cute faces of Ayushman Khurana and Parineeti Chopra’s characters and looking at them happy, I feel happy. The ending ingrained in my mind is such an amazing source of never ending smiles.
Meri Pyaari Bindu (Loosely translated to My Lovely Bindu) is a combination of (500) Days of Summer, Forrest Gump and Paper Towns. Sort of. For the initiated, the people who have seen these three films, will notice a lot of plot similarities with them. Those who haven’t, you’ll have it in reverse. The one central narrative element which all four movies share, is that the story is focused on the male lead; his character, journey and emotions. The female lead is explored only as much as she impacts the male lead. We don’t delve into her thought process or the nuances of her thinking.
In our story, the male lead is Abhimanyu “Bubla” Roy, who is deeply and madly in love with Bindu Shankarnarayanan, his neighbour since 1983, when he was four.
Meri Pyaari Bindu is a fantastic film. It nails every aspect of film-making, direction, characterization, acting, songs, plot lines and dialogues! Damn.
It is so immensely engrossing. I have particular habit. In the movie hall, if somebody is speaking, or a phone seven rows in front of me turns on with a white scree, I get distracted and spend 10-20 second on the distraction. Fifteen minutes in, I was so into the film, I could care less what anybody was doing or speaking or thinking. I was laughing almost half the time. It became tough not to laugh at almost every scene. At one point, my mom had to tell me to laugh quietly. I remember hitting my knees on two occasions. The comedy is subtle and has you out of your wits.
At the same time, it has a great mix of emotional, which reveals the characters beyond their comedy.
Honestly, if any one of you came up to me and asked me to tell you a scene by scene synopsis of the movie, I would fail. There is just no chance. I was so hooked onto the movie, so engrossed in the scenes, I forgot to watch them; I was experiencing them. Like I said, you get so lost in the movie, you go from scene to scene, remembering the essence but forgetting what it was about. You can barely sequence the. That was about 70% of the first half and 50% of the second half for me.
Meri Pyaari Bindu is insanely artistic. I don’t think I can put it in terms which everyone will agree to; so I’ll put them in terms I relate to. It has so many elements which go beyond the surface. The scenes use nostalgia, often
accompanied by music to familiarise us with the characters. It uses metaphors to speak to us in scenes. The scenes have a deep magic embedded in them, which makes them feel they are scenes which happen only in movies, when they just as easily do in real life. The dialogues often have meaning beyond the surface, which can only be caught by those who pay attention to the film.
This is another reason why I love the film, because all these little little things add so much layer and depth to the film and make it a rewarding experience.
The movie honestly stands on its writing. The movie tackles a concept so well-trodden (the best inarguably by (500) Days of Summer), it’s impossible to set a foundation there because it’s been so overused, the building might crumble under its own weight. Every scene of the movie risks the foundation. Even if one scene were to miss its mark, it would ruin the remaining movie and nullify whatever has been done.
Plus, Ayushman Khurana and Parineeti Chopra had their characters down to the dot. Ayushman Khurana looked damn cute (and innocent and charming) in his portrayal of the silent, straight, supportive, intense, filled with nostalgia Abhimanyu “Bubla” Roy. Parineeti Chopra’s Bindu Shankarnarayanan is random, volatile and smart. Her character is as crazy and unpredictable as is Ayushman Khurana’s stable and silent. And Parineeti Chopra’s character does it all: be crazy, happy, cry silently and loudly, be sad, be depressed, be edgy and happy (the one where you’re satisfied with life and all it has to offer).
There is one particular complaint I have with the film. Everyone who still hasn’t watched the movie might want to skip it and get to the next paragraph. Early on in the film, the concept of a tape is introduced; wherein Abhimanyu and Bindu save 10 songs each on side of a cassette. These are the ten songs which are the most important in their life. We are only ever introduced to one song, the remaining 19 are never seen. I would have loved had all the songs been used, or at least a few more or the concept been revised to fewer songs so they could have been used.
Like I said, Meri Pyaari Bindu is a fantastic movie, one which deserves multiple re watches. Though beware, its comedy, artistic scenes and unconventional style don’t make it everyone’s cup of tea. It is certainly not a bad film by any stretch, but requires some acceptance of unconventional styles for getting into.
Rating-3.5/4

Movie To Watch-Silver Linings Playbook

Standard

Screenshot (49).png

Every once in a while, you come across a movie, with such a positive and optimistic story, a happy ending, it leaves you with a huge grin in your face. The characters have resolved their issues and accepted what they couldn’t resolve. They appreciate all that they have, where they are and love the people who are with them here, and were with them the entire journey. They don’t need anything else. They are happy.
Silver Linings Playbook is that sort of a movie. It’s a sweet, terrific, almost a classical film. It’s simple, beautiful and unpretentious. Years from now, this is one of the movies people will remember fondly, with a smile on their face and warmness in their hearts. People will also take inspiration from this film: You have to try hard and stay positive, and then you have a chance at a silver lining; a happy ending. This movie teaches you how to live your life. It inspires you to try and be better.
Not many movies can have such an impact on people. I talked to many people who have seen this film and they all share similar feelings. Everybody loved the film and took something from it: Happiness, optimism, respect for life, love and acceptance.
The direction and cinematography of Silver Linings Playbook is amazing. The selection of scenes and the angles at which they are shot are amazing. They capture the characters in the frames perfectly. It’s not something which is something you can say is missing in a movie. It just stands out and makes the movie better when it is present. Plus the whole dance sequence. Oh good god how did they shoot that! How in the world? Did Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence dance with the camera? Or were there multiple cameras? The camera gave Bradley Cooper’s and Jennifer Lawrence’s Pat and Tiffany different auras. They had two distinct auras which set them apart. And that was entirely the magic of the camera, nothing else.
Screenshot (81).png
On top of that, the direction is phenomenal. David O. Russell knows all he must do in a scene with the characters and there is no hesitation with it. The execution is flawless.
Obviously, a movie so good cannot be so good without a great script. A bad script can never be made into a great movie, everyone always remember that.
A lot of people already know that the lead characters in the film suffer from psychosomatic disorders. Pat Solitano (Bradley Cooper) suffers from Bipolar Disease. Tiffany (Jennifer Lawrence) has an unmentioned mental illness. Then Pat’s friend Danny (Chris Tucker) has anger issues.
Also, there are a lot of characters in the film who don’t have a psychosomatic disorders, but feel extreme emotions or have mild illnesses as well. Pat’s father, Pat Sr. (Robert De Niro) is speculated to have mild OCD. Ronnie (John Ortiz) confesses that he often finds himself full of rage and breaks things in his garage. This is why I love this movie, because it shows that even normal people, all of us, are not always normal.
I love this aspect. I love how it portrays people. It doesn’t preach that people with psychosomatic disorders are completely different or require pity. At the same time, it also shows how normal people too have bad tendencies, and that is not a bad thing (at least what I feel, though it always helps in letting it out, either all of it at once, or little by little). All people are the same, and only our judgement and labels separate them. If someone is trying to get better, make their life better, no matter who they are, we should root for them, instead of berating the or putting them down or making them feel bad.
Don’t get my words wrong. This is only what I’ve felt after watching the movie, what I’ve interpreted. Psychosomatic disorders are a theme in the film, but the film doesn’t revolve around them. It revolves around people. Family, love, compassion, acceptance, bridging gaps, and happiness.
I’ve often, time and again compared Silver Linings Playbook to a fairy-tale because that is what most acutely describes it. It’s a story where the characters grapple with situations thrown at them; again and again. And they vary each and every time and not every time can they be solved; but it’s essential to learn from them. But at the end, it all works out into a happy ending. My simplistic typing oversimplifies it, but in all honesty, it is much more fleshed out than this. Its characters are simple, unpretentious and not multi-layered.
I’ve been actually planning to post this Movie to Watch for the previous nine months, but I couldn’t hit the right note till six months ago. Then it took me three months to type it all down. I finally posted, I’m sorry it took so long for me to post this. (You’ll get this after you’ve seen the movie). Watch this movie. It’s terrific. It’s a movie you will always remember, and will fall in love with.

Screenshot (454)

Happy Endings !

The backlash surrounding La La Land

Standard

Ever since La La Land swept all seven of its nominations at the Golden Globes, and received 14 nominations at the Oscars, La La Land, like various movies before which have received a lot of love and attention and been loved by people and critics and has been perceived as magic; has been hit with what those movies had been hit with before. Tons and tons of heavily opinionated, biased and senseless backlash by people who nit-pick every aspect of it to prove it is not perfect.
I read eight-nine articles about why La La Land’s win at the Oscars will be a disaster for the Oscars; how La La Land shouldn’t win because its characters are narcissistic and sacrifice love for self-interest (This is an article by the Guardian. We’ll get to dissenting on it in the next paragraph); Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone were only chosen to sell tickets; Mia and Seb’s break up was not clearly explained; HOW SEB BLASTED MUSIC INSTEAD OF RINGING THE DOOR BELL FOR MIA AND HOW IT WOULD HAVE DISTURBED THE NEIGHBOURS(Again the Guardian article. Is this your reason for why La La Land shouldn’t win the Oscars? Because the movie uses artistic freedom and doesn’t care about neighbours? Wow!); and how La La Land’s clean sweep at the Oscars meant the other movies didn’t get recognition. There were sensible articles here and there as to why La La Land was is not that good a movie. They were well articulated, not biased and I loved the aspects of La La Land they put in as to why they didn’t like it (such as this article by The Huffington Post-Let The ‘La La Land’ Backlash Begin).
I’ll start off with this particularly sorry excuse for an article by the Guardian by the Big Picture- La La Land’s inevitable Oscars win is a disaster for Hollywood – and for us. This is the type of article you write when something is cool and you want to join the train hating it. It is extremely biased, opinionated and derides La La Land based only on the author’s view rather than an analysis of the film’s merits and demerits. The author, like so many people, have the issue of:
1) “For some, the narrative sags and the plot fails to convince. Just why do Seb and Mia break up? A temporary separation doesn’t have to destroy a relationship.”
2) Then there is the counterfactual ending. What is it supposed to mean? That they should have stayed together? When they could have, but didn’t and appeared content with the alternative paths they had chosen?
Both the points have the same answer: USE YOUR IMAGINATION. You know, that thing we had as children. Just because we’re grown up doesn’t mean we have to stop using it. It’s up to us to wonder why Seb and Mia break up. It’s up to us to wonder why they leave each other the moment they need to part ways. The ending, the author themselves has proved his folly and those of various others like him by asking “What is it supposed to mean?” It means whatever the hell you want it to mean. The story, the director can’t spoon-feed you everything. Some things you must interpret on your own. That’s what art is. It’s what you feel about it. You’re fighting over what the ending was supposed to mean. It’s up to you, you unimaginative idiot.
Then, the author had the issue:
“Of course, its characters are humourless and insensitive: narcissists usually are. They can’t be rich and complex, because self-obsessives aren’t.”
WOWWWWW!!! So much generalisation! Is that what you use to say that the movie is not good? That its characters are narcissists. Are you a phycologist? Can I see the degree which allows you to make such a diagnosis? No? Then I’m sorry, your diagnosis cannot be accepted. Lastly, one more point:

“When Seb arrives to pick up Mia, he blasts his car horn rather than ringing the doorbell. Never mind the neighbours; it’s only Seb who counts. When Mia is looking for Seb in a cinema audience, she stands in front of the screen and blocks the picture. Of course. She matters; the other filmgoers don’t.”

Oh hell! Oh my God! Does somebody have an inferiority complex? (I’m not a psychologist, so I can only ask, not label). Seriously? Is that what you think is wrong in a movie? WOW! So much nit-picking. The rest of the article is all talks about how the movie has no soul, how it is self-indulgent and just like today’s people and that’s why we like it and all opinions, none of which are in anyway connected to the film’s merits. The author feels that the film doesn’t celebrate love and life. I would like to tell the author that this is an opinion; I for one think it does celebrate love and life. Opinions clash, but just because your feelings for a movie are negative, doesn’t mean the movie is bad. They are your opinions; not facts.

Another article I read recently on MTV NEWS was that:

“If you’re gonna make a film about an artist staying true to the roots of jazz against the odds and against modern reinventions of the genre (from white musicians like, say, Mayer Hawthorne), you’d think that artist would be black.”

I don’t get this. Had the movie been less successful, would people have raised such a question? Wouldn’t the movie been heralded as a fine attempt to re-invigorate the Jazz genre. The author was so butt hurt over the fact that the lead actors were White and there weren’t people of colour. I would like to point out the fact that nobody did such a thing for “Swiss Army Man”, which only had two white actors for almost the entire movie. Why not the push for one of the leads being played a colour actor? Again, the author said:
“La La Land opens with a stunning and visually masterful dance sequence sung by an incredibly diverse group of Los Angeles denizens…….. (Skipped a few lines)…… Those people of colour who gave it their all in the opening sequence, perhaps to remind Oscar voters of that Hamilton musical they love so much, are quickly whisked away so the Caucasian sing-along can begin.”
FOR THE LOVE OF GOD, PLEASE STOP MAKING ASSUMPTIONS ON YOUR PART AND SPWEING THEM OUT AS BEING THE TRUTH. This is bullshit. The author assumes this is the aim, rather than having a great opening sequence; and then lays their criticism on what they think is the aim. Wow!

Washington Post in their article-  Your guide to the ‘La La Land’ backlash said:

“the Guardian deems Sebastian “every bad date you ever had,” adding he’s “a jazz snob, the kind whose response to a woman saying she ‘hates jazz’ is to tell her she’s wrong and take her to a jazz club on every date thereafter. He is also, as a side note, often an actual jerk.”

Oh god! Oh my god! Is that why this movie should be crucified? Man, is this criticism? Really? That’s like saying, fuck. I don’t even know anymore. All this anger has me so goddamn tired.

Refinery had another horrible/ terrible article which goes over all the same notes as every other article on the net about La La Land backlash. I’m tired of reading that people hate it for all the wrong reason. All the reasons people hate it for are caused because of nit-picking. Seriously, I should hate this movie because Seb is an asshole? Because the movie doesn’t explain why Sab and Mia broke up?
I will not stand by and let people tarnish the image of La La Land and throw it down for stupid reasons. I loved La La Land. I loved every second of that movie. I will defend it where people will wrong it for wrong reasons. Where the criticism is just, we all accept it. But these opinionated articles, heavily biased articles I will fight against. Because the only thing they do is make a movie look bad for all the wrong reason; all of which are not based on the movie’s merits or demerits.


I have never been more infuriated or angry while venting out my feelings. All these articles, and so many more are detrimental to all of us. Because they stand as metaphors to the fact that at times, we simply can’t accept what is good and we must nitpick and break it down and prove it is bad.
This has been done for so many movies before this. Since La La Land is one of the most amazing and magical movies I have seen, all these articles pushed me into action and fight back for it.

Movie Review- La La Land

Standard

La La Land. Possibly the most anticipated movie of 2016. Written and directed by Damien Chazelle. Honestly, to say La La Land is a magical movie film is an understatement. If Whiplash is Damien Chazelle’s love letter to jazz music, La La Land is Damien Chazelle is his love letter to Jazz Music and acting.
La La Land is the tale of every artist to have existed on the planet. It shows all the various phases artists go through. Having an audition disturbed. Putting years of your life into your passion and leaving the rest of your life behind. Getting ripped off. Finding nobody who understands your love for your art. Fluctuating self-respect, ranging from downright low and giving up to being self-obsessed. Setting for something less than your passion for stability. Losing heart after what you thought would be your lucky break doesn’t turn out to be. And eventually the good times as well. Getting motivated by the people around you. Working hard again after you get that break once after years.
La La Land centers around two people, but it tells us the story of each and every artist, be it a singer, writer, dancer, actor.
La La Land revolves around two people struggling in LA. Mia Dolan (Emma Stone), a struggling actor who works part time as a barista in between auditions. She loves singing and dancing and finds good music worthy of appreciation and mesmerising.
The other person we have is Sebastian Wilder, a jazz music aficionado who too has a plan, which I Won’t be revealing. It’s very different from the archetypes we have had in the past and his story is unique. It’s the sort of twist we all had in Whiplash.
Emma Stone, Emma Stone! She is absolutely lovely as Mia. She is the perfect Oscar contender for Best Actress. She gets every emotion right, every note right, every dance move right. She is flawless in her portrayal of Mia and there is no second in the movie where you can fault her. She is, amazing.
Ryan Gosling. It’s been a damn long time since I’ve seen him do a good lead role. The last one was Half Nelson, in 2006, where he received an Oscar nomination. Gosling was amazing as well, though there were a few missed steps. In the dance sequences, between the big steps, Gosling fell a bit silent and seemed to be lost. This was the only hitch in an otherwise perfect performance. Plus, I’m absolutely positive Gosling learned how to play the piano for this role. Wow!
Both of these actors were marvellous and amazing.
The choreography of this film is W-O-W. The dance steps used and the way they were executed as well. Spectacular. There is a huge large scale dance that takes place on a bridge. It isn’t easy co-ordinating that, nor choreographing. But it was done, flawlessly, without a single error.
Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling! They were so amazing with their dance! They were perfect!
The movie could not have been as amazing without the right camera angles. No movie can be. And La La Land has the finest cinematography in a long time. The scenes were perfect. Shots of LA all lit up in Stars; Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone in a building to the left and the world on the right. No movie can ask for better cinematography than this.
Before I move on with more praises about La La Land, there are two problems I found in it. First off, I felt a lack of intensity in the scenes at times in La La Land. I cannot be absolutely certain. The people in the theatre were constantly talking and texting and I was getting distracted a lot. Second, at the beginning, the chemistry between Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling felt forced. It smoothed itself out eventually, but it still pinches me.
Now, let’s get to the most essential and tiresome job which makes La La Land possible. The director. This year, there is no better directed movie this year in Hollywood, possibly even world cinema. To get the magic out from the script and the director’s mind and put it on display on the big screen is always a tough task. To make people fall in love with your movie and it’s world.
La La Land has the grandest, most magnificent and elaborate dance sequences. Then one of the most visually aesthetic and beautiful pieces. And then a beautiful and moving climatic piece, reminiscent of Miles Teller’s drumming at the climax of Whiplash.
Plus the effects Damien Chazelle uses. Then extracting such intense and intricate work from Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling. Merging all the aspects, acting, choreography, cinematography, dialogues all into one cohesive whole. Then keeping the audience in awe of it and its magic.
Take a bow Damien Chazelle, Take a bow sir. You have directed one of the best Hollywood movies of maybe the past five years (Maybe even better than Inception) and the most magical movie easily. You’re a magician, as I’ve said all along, this movie is your magic. Directing it, your greatest trick. Don’t tell the trick to anyone, then we lose respect (Movie reference. Wink Wink).
La La Land is the perfect send-off to 2016, which has had some of the most amazing movies released in a single year. Udta Punjab, Pink, Finding Dory, Deadpool, Neerja, Civil War, Arrival, Nit Battey Sanata, Doctor Strange, Manchester By The Sea( Yet to watch this, but it has gotten amazing reviews) and Kapoor and Sons.
There is no better send off to all the movie awesomeness we’ve had this year.
La La Land is original, unique and serious. Directors don’t make movies like these anymore. If they do, they’re rarely musicals or imbued with so much magic. I loved this movie a lot. I don’t know how else best to put it.
Magic. Love. Music. Acting. Dance. La La Land.

Rating – 3.5/4


And ending the Three Days, Three Posts frenzy, one of the finest, magical and amazing movies made in this year as well as in a long time. This movie is beautiful, completely original and unique. No one else has made a movie like La La Land, and scavenge all Hollywood movies, you won’t find anything like it. All those who are yet to watch it, or are planing not to or in two minds, watch it. Do yourself a favor and watch it. Close this window, throw this review away and run to the nearest cinema hall and watch this movie.
The perfect movie to end my Three Days, Three Posts. It was something entirely new I did out of a sheer creative impulse to write more. It helped me not only write these three amazing reviews, but also two more short stories and some parts of my novel.

Also, I reached 1000 blog views in a single year as well in these three days as well. Thank you everybody who has supported my blog by coming here and reading what i write and for all the love showered on the blog. Thank you. Here’s to keeping the blog in tip top shape till I write.
Happy Reading!