‘Sachin: A Billion Dreams’ review: Batsman Returns


As director James Erskine sat down to write the script for Sachin: A Billion Dreams, one can only imagine him grappling with the quintessentially existential questions that must haunt anyone who sets out to make a docu-drama on a much-loved, much-adored, and much-revered personality – what’s to be the POV for this feature? How much … Continue reading ‘Sachin: A Billion Dreams’ review: Batsman Returns

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‘Oppam’ review: An Apartment, Complex


The camera follows Jayaraman (Mohanlal), panning his walk in slow motion, as he passes the dead body, and then, in the crowd, you see the killer’s visage, a child in his arms, a lady next to him. You do a double take, but Jayaraman passes him by, even though he’s had a deadly scuffle with … Continue reading ‘Oppam’ review: An Apartment, Complex

‘Hidden Figures’ review: A Calculated Success


Imagine you are a woman. (If you actually are, you can safely skip this part.) Imagine, also, that you’re a woman who belongs to a race, religion, or caste, that’s discriminated against. Imagine that you’re sharp, intelligent, and ambitious. Imagine that you’re strait-jacketed by the forces of discrimination at work and in the society, your … Continue reading ‘Hidden Figures’ review: A Calculated Success

‘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

‘Dangal’ review: First Class Coach


We menfolk have it rather good, don’t we? There’s nary a phase of discrimination in our lives, be it while pursuing our education, while deciding what we want to do with our lives, while pursuing our interests, while establishing ourselves at our work places, or even while looking for a soul mate. Life for most … Continue reading ‘Dangal’ review: First Class Coach

‘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

‘Dear Zindagi’ review: Three Chairs for Life


Somewhere after the interval, a gentleman sitting behind me in the cinema hall let fly these profound words in a markedly stylish, know-all accent, “Someone tell this b*** to get a life.” My first instinct was to turn around and request the stony (if not stoned) voiced drawler to get another cinema hall. But then, … Continue reading ‘Dear Zindagi’ review: Three Chairs for Life

‘Ventilator’ review: Breathe Easy


There was a time – and a generation – when there existed a concept called “favourite uncle” or “favourite aunt”; “favourite cousin” even. Today, the “uncle”, “aunt”, and “cousin” have dissolved into nodding acquaintances and been replaced by a far more embracing and intimate group - “video game”, “website”, and “app”. The echt family structure … Continue reading ‘Ventilator’ review: Breathe Easy

‘Shivaay’ review: High Anxiety, Extended Version


For the second time in as many weeks, I’ll invoke the parent in you – and this time, it’s because director Ajay Devgn - venturing behind the camera for the second time – doesn’t give you any choice. For, Shivaay is all about a single parent and his daughter, and the former’s travails (a mild … Continue reading ‘Shivaay’ review: High Anxiety, Extended Version

‘Sairat’ review: Teach Your Children Hell


If you’re a parent, you’d have faced that inescapable question your little one would have piped up and asked you, catching you unawares, much like any situation that the common man faces hits our scrofulous politicians. No, I don’t mean the question about the birds and the bees. That’s easier to handle, as you deal … Continue reading ‘Sairat’ review: Teach Your Children Hell