‘Tumhari Sulu’ review: Dream Your Dream, But…


In Vidya Balan do you find a carefully studied, thoughtful portrayal of a wife and a mother packed away amongst millions of others like her in the far-flung city suburbs, rushing through the morning routine to pack off her husband, Ashok (Manav Kaul) and son Pranav (Abhishek Sharrma, portraying all the angst and fun so naturally), adrenaline pumping, high steam pressure stewing to ensure they get their breakfast on time, and everything else ready for them to scoot out the house. In her act do you find the sudden listlessness of a mid-morning, the heartbeat quieter, the pace languid, the clew of her life sliding into a routine that could turn foggy with despair. Sulu, thankfully, is made of stronger stuff, and spends her day participating in dial-in radio contests, and actually winning along the way, an assortment of household items that may be useful or back-up as giveaway presents.

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‘Newton’ review: Grawitty in Gravity


Director Amit V Masurkar proves there’s hope. And he does this with a movie that’s unarguably carved its place in the rarefied group that will adorn the top of the list of 2017’s best movies. Newton is a stunning cinematic achievement, eschewing the high-ground or low-browed paths, choosing instead, to a take delightful path of rib-tickling, witty walk-around, not wearing anything on its sleeve, and yet making you cogitate on so many issues it highlights with the warmth of a friendly glow-worm.

‘Shubh Mangal Savdhan’ review: Life’s Hard When It Isn’t


Keeping the proceedings alive and kicking is the cast. As Mudit’s parents, Supriya Shukla and Chittaranjan Tripathy are superb. The latter, especially, is brilliant in a scene where he evokes a Pan Parag ad, just because he wanted to, for the longest time; or, when Mudit fails to show up in the bus to Hardwar, his alcohol-laced aggression is classic, more so when it’s followed by the inevitable open-mouthed slumber. On the other side, Seema Bhargava and Neeraj Sood are equally good as the girl’s parents; note again, the latter, as he gets tetchier by the moment and gives some terse advice to the hapless Mudit on the phone.

‘Hindi Medium’ review: Nightmare on Ed. Street


It was so with Anurag Mathur’s The Inscrutable Americans, where to me, the highlight was the letters Gopal wrote from the USA to his younger brother in India. And it was so with the photocopied page of a foreign magazine that I had in my possession, listing signage across the world, ostensibly meant to guide … Continue reading ‘Hindi Medium’ review: Nightmare on Ed. Street

‘Noor’ review: Hollow Ma’am


You’re facing what is possibly the biggest crisis of your life. You’re at your wit’s end, wondering how on earth you’ll ever resolve it. No, your boyfriend hasn’t given you the thumbs down. And no, your first date didn’t end up with you slobbering all over your mains. It’s much worse than this and anything … Continue reading ‘Noor’ review: Hollow Ma’am

‘Mukti Bhawan’ review: A Celebratory Triumph


“I’m so tired of this life. I just want to go off now.” If you’ve heard these lines from any elder in your family, chances are that your reaction would be an irritated roll-of-the-eyes at this seemingly bromidic utterance, for which you neither have the time nor the patience. Make the time. Garner the strength … Continue reading ‘Mukti Bhawan’ review: A Celebratory Triumph

‘Phillauri’ review: Tree’s Company


The title of this piece has just about a tenuous thread to what follows. Much like the no-connection between the trailer of Phillauri (citizen of Phillaur) and the movie feature. I’ve lamented about how misleading trailers can be, either upping your expectations only to realize the heights were but an illusion - flashback to my … Continue reading ‘Phillauri’ review: Tree’s Company

‘The State vs Jolly LLB 2’ review: Judge Dread


The law’s an ass, but not in the classic sense of the phrase. Not in India, at least. Here, with the ratio of a judge to the civilian population an unbalanced 10 to a million (in the year 2015) and over 30 million cases running in different courts, the law’s an overloaded, overworked ass. Ditto … Continue reading ‘The State vs Jolly LLB 2’ review: Judge Dread

‘Teesri Manzil’ review: The Fall and the Rise


{This review was first published in the inaugural issue of Pancham Times, a publication conceptualized and crystallized into nostalgic reality by the panchammagic group based out of Pune, India. To know more about this group, visit http://panchammagic.org/. You can also follow them on Facebook @panchammagic and on Twitter at @panchammagic.} The fall is as horrifying as an … Continue reading ‘Teesri Manzil’ review: The Fall and the Rise

‘La La Land’ review: Life and Los Angelic


There’s a new drug in town. It is, as a matter of fact, ubiquitous and pervasive across the world. Its primary vehicles are the social media, the online and print media, the political and apolitical events swarming this world we live in, and other forms of information constantly being barrelled down our eagerly addicted receptors. … Continue reading ‘La La Land’ review: Life and Los Angelic