Nov 15, 2007

Review - OSO & Saawariya

Om Shanti Om.....senseless entertainer

The second directorial venture by Farah Khan simply exceeded my expectations in virtually all departments except screenplay. But do we care so much about the script if the movie keeps you interested? No! And that's exactly OSO's advantage which played into the hands of none other than SRK. It's all about reincarnation and that fine line between mystery and reality.

The film is set in the backdrop of 70s where they use the old Bombay studios to portrait the vintage Hindi cinema. SRK plays a junior artist and he fits like a T in the role with superb comic timing and then there is Deepika who is the "dreamy girl" in celluloid. Both of them die under mysterious circumstances when our villain Arjun Rampal come to know that Deepika is carrying his baby. Having spent lacs of rupees on a future project titled Om Shanti Om, producer Rampal couldn't afford to waste the money because the heroine is pregnant. The argument between them leads to a fatal incident and phew Deepika and SRK who comes to help her in between, die.

Meanwhile, SRK reincarnates as the son of another top hero and later becomes the hottest star the country has ever seen. The rest is all about how he confronts Arjun Ramphal to death. There is a surprise in the climax which is good enough to win the audience's hearts. The story is as old as the Shahjahan n Mumtaz epic but the undisputed strength of OSO is its surprises which includes a song with 30 odd Bollywood stars, those sumptuous sets, well-packaged dance numbers, riveting climax and ofcourse SRK's new attire. On the whole, it's not a bad idea to spend some penny on this pot boiler which I am sure will satisfy all kinds of audience.

Saawariya.......Simply pathetic

A classicalexample of a much hyped disaster is Sanjay Leela Bhansali's Saawariya starring Ranbir and Sonam Kapoor. The film doesn't deserve to be reviewed but I just want to show how angry I was watching oops tolerating it. Getting inspired from an English short story which talks about romance in 4 nights, is not really an excuse to make such pathetic films. The whole film hams all the way and is undoubtedly one of the worst films in Hindi cinema.

The script is wafer thin and I wonder the whole thing could have been wrapped up in 1 hour. A bar dancer falls in love with a Muslim girl in an artificially created city but the girl is waiting for her lover for the past one year. Yep, that's the story and in the last scene the girl goes away with her sweet heart much to the horror of Ranbir Kapoor. Even colorful sets and beautifully choreographed songs doesn't help the cause for this ill-made film but Bhansali should have had some sanity for stretching it beyond 2 hours. The biggest problem is that Saawariya is a musical just like Jhoom Barabar Jhoom or Jaan-e-Mann for which the audience has no option but to ditch.

Sonam Kapoor looks promising but is more unfortunate to have a wasted debut like this. Ranbir Kapoor exaggerates his mannerisms which is the last thing expected from a debutant. After that cult classic Black, Saawariya is undoubtedly Bhansali's biggest mistake till date and it's not because it's a flop. I don't really care if an average movie bombs but when the media and newspapers keep shouting about one flick, there is every chance that people expect something new. Bhansali may have recovered the movies' cost thanks to the very hype but what about my 200 bucks. It's not even worth watching for free. There can only be Saawariya like Saawariya because I don't think any director is as crazy as Bhansali to make such a crap in the name of romance. Don't ever watch it even on T.V........

Oct 29, 2007

Season Review

In 2006, it was a head on collision between Ferrari and Renault but in 2007, the lot seemed to favor the Woking based team against the Scuderia. Again, its all proved wrong as Formula 1 the sport, emerged triumphant after a difficult season. Take a look at the season review by going through the top 4 drivers

KIMI RAIKKONEN (2006 5th - 2007 World Champion)

The long talked about unlucky magnet of F1 finally turned things around with a new team after a dismal mid season. He started off well as a champion doing the talking in Melbourne but when the new Bridgestone tires took a toll on his driving, he slipped to 4th place in the championship after 7 races. Then in Magny Cours a hard fought victory saw Kimi getting adapted to the tyre setup. Its no looking back from then on, back to back victories in Spa and Shanghai held Raikkonen in contention for the final show down in Interlagos with a 7 point deficit. Just like what Prost did to Nigel Mansell and Nelson Piquet in '86, Kimi came from behind to clinch his very first drivers' championship leading a Ferrari 1-2 in Brazil. He kept his focus by alowing his driving to do all the talking and didn't look carried away by the spy saga. Now we know why hes called the "Iceman". He never melts.
Verdict: Breathtaking comeback !

LEWIS HAMILTON (2006 DNP - 2007 2nd)

From race 1 to race 15, he simply was a reason to watch F1 in 2007. 12 podiums in his rookie year is something you cannot ask for from any driver but he gave it all. Again, many might think that Hamilton was backed by an awesome Mclaren MP422 chassis, infact it's true but it takes a lot of skill and determination to beat your 2 time champion teammate. Having said that, it is far from a perfect year for this Briton as pressure got the better of him in China and Brazil. It would take a dismal performance to concede the title having lead Kimi by 17 points after race 15. Yes, the combination of stupidity both from him and his team, with some lack of fortunes means Hamilton had to settle for second.
Verdict: Good one but not good enough !

FERNANDO ALONSO (2006 1st - 2007 3rd)

Alonso would have meant business in the last two years but this time around, I have to change it to "disgrace". If there is someone who would have lost all his armory from his Arsenal, it has to be Alonso. I can understand, the so called Hamilton favoritism in McLaren but what I don't understand is Alonso's dismal cribbing against his own team and even blackmailing them in the spy scandal. Its a pity that a double world champion lacks dignity. By this time, Alonso should have emerged as a dictator and should have brought his presence felt in McLaren. 4 wins is not enough to win you the championship but nevertheless he seems to be happy to lose to Kimi rather to Lewis.
Verdict: Shut the **** up and drive !

FELIPE MASSA (2006 3rd - 2007 4th)

Its a bit surprising to see Massa slipping by a place in an year after winning more races than what he has done in 2006. I have to say, he is not in the Kimi, Schumi league cos he has always won from pole. That is a clear sign of the complacency he feels when starting from pole and the nerves when starting from somewhere else. Malaysia and Europe are indeed black spots in an otherwise OK season. Honestly, we don't expect too much from Massa and yeah the supporting role to Kimi he played in Brazil is worth mentioning. Ferrari still has belief in him and had put an end to all the speculation regarding Alonso's arrival by giving him a further 3 year deal.
Verdict: Could have been better !

Oct 22, 2007

A superlative drive to glory......

Who would have predicted this when he was 17 points behind the then leader Hamilton with only 2 races to go? I always knew Kimi Raikkonen is one man who never gives up nor be complacement while he is in the cock-pit. But even my strongest notion about Kimi couldn't help me from facing the reality which was a McLaren driver would win the drivers' championship. Well, that was not to be.

A Ferrari 1-2 was just what Kimi and Massa could manage and rest depended highly on the two silver McLarens. Going into the first corner, Hamilton was passed by Raikkonen and even by his teammate going into second. Still it was his championship to lose from there. Clearly an experience driver wouldn't have risked himself with an ambitious move on the third placed Alonso when you actually have no space to pass. A rookie mistake costed him 4th 5th and 6th places and Lewis slumped to 7. Even then, the McLaren being a superior car is supposed to cut the field and move ahead but that is not expected when you are struggling to change the gears.

Kimi being notified by Ferrari about Lewis' hard show, quickly put his Scarlet onto a series of scorching laps and got pass his teammate which some may think as an already planned Ferrari antic. Whatever it was, Kimi took the chequered flag ahead of Massa and Alonso and Lewis who was a distant 7th. Job done but it took some time for the calculations to really hit the Iceman and when it did, he came out of the cock pit jubilant and not knowing what to do. Kimi drove a Champion's drive and didn't put a wheel wrong when it mattered most. He should have been a "former champion" by now but fortune was always showing its back on him.

Well, I am ecstatic or rather relieved to see my screams for the 'flying finn' finally getting paid off.

Congrats KIMI for becoming the 2007 Formula 1 World Champion.....

World Championship standings, round 17 and final

Drivers: Constructors:

1. Raikkonen 110 1. Ferrari 204
2. Hamilton 109 2. BMW Sauber 101
3. Alonso 109 3. Renault 51
4. Massa 94 4. Williams-Toyota 33
5. Heidfeld 61 5. Red Bull-Renault 24
6. Kubica 39 6. Toyota 13
7. Kovalainen 30 7. Toro Rosso-Ferrari 8
8. Fisichella 21 8. Honda 6
9. Rosberg 20 9. Super Aguri-Honda 4
10. Coulthard 14 10. Spyker-Ferrari 1
11. Wurz 13 11. McLaren-Mercedes -
12. Webber 10
13. Trulli 8
14. Vettel 6
15. Button 6
16. R.Schumacher 5
17. Sato 4
18. Liuzzi 3
19. Sutil 1

Oct 21, 2007

WoRlD cHaMpIoN.........finally !

Courtesy: Evenstar Saima

bra_flag.gif picture by SaimaAzam
Sunday -
_354412s.png picture by SaimaAzam _354410s.png picture by SaimaAzam
Ferrari have their new Champion and Kimi smiles as destiny's child, and the 2007 F1 World Championship is well deserved to him.

Kimi Raikkonen : perseverance won the title

"For sure we were not in the strongest position as some point of the season, (but) we always believed we can recover, we always believed we can do a better job than the others," said Raikkonen. Even in hard times we stick together and never give up. We saw at the end that although we were a long way behind, we knew we could win the championship."

"I have to thank the team, they did a great job, not just today but all year," Raikkonen said. "We always worked hard and improved the situation, we had perfect team work, we had a hard fight with Massa all year and he was unfortunate not being in the fight any more.

"The sponsors have been a big bonus for us, they have done a great job for us, improving the fuel and everything, for sure I am going to enjoy today. I am very happy. I got a very good start, we were side by side with Felipe but we didn't want to race too hard," he explained. "I got past Hamilton and then he went off and I knew we had a chance then.

"We had good speed with the car, taking it easy, saving the car and tyres, we could have gone faster. Perfect work from the team, it paid off very well so thanks very much.

"I wasn't really 100 percent sure, we weren't sure if someone needed to stop in front of Lewis. He was seventh and even though I finished, there were other people who needed to finish, it took a long time to hear I had finally won. After the last few races we scored some good points, it has been a good finish to the season, great work for everybody. I am very happy: it was an amazing day."

An amazing day indeed! Fantastic stuff from you Kimi. Absolutely fantastic. Congratulations to the Iceman - the man who we have supported no matter what situation we were in. I believed you would win it today and never for a second doubted you. A big hug from me goes out to all the Kimi fans out there - congratulations guys! Go on, don't be shy, leave a comment and tell us your thoughts about the race, and your feelings when watching Kimi pronounced as world champion. I couldn't hold my tears in! Keep Flying Kimi - we adore you!

_354561s-1.png picture by SaimaAzam

Oct 18, 2007

All eyes on the 3-D finale in Interlagos........

What more can you ask for? In a season dominated by spygate scandals, off camera cribbings and moreover Ferrari - Mclaren head on collisions, a 3 way title fight in the very last grandprix just add to the spice. I have my doubts whether this has been the best season racing vise but nevertheless it is a season which gave just too many things to digest in one stretch. All said and done, here are the relative possibilities for the 3 drivers to win the title

For Kimi to win - Need to finsih 1st or 2nd hoping that both the McLarens would take out each other and also hoping for his teammate to sandwich between himself and one of the McLarens in the worst case

For Alonso to win - Have to beat Hamilton by a margin of 4 points by keeping Kimi behind. If he wins and lewis comes third, job done

For Lewis to win - Just have to beat Kimi and Fernando no mater where you finish. Also he can afford to go out with a more strategic approach

Millions watching not necessarily among the raucous Sao Paulo crowd but they know they just have to get a glimpse of the season finale and see 3 drivers battling out hard...............

When and Where can u see

Qualifying - ESPN Live 20th October 21.30 hrs IST
Race - Star Sports Live 21st October 21.30 hrs IST

Oct 13, 2007

Laga Chunari Mein Daag - deceptive !

Pradeep Sarkar has come out with a melodrama, trying to tell the story of the journey of a Banarasi woman in his latest flick, Lagaa Chunari Mein Daag(LCMD). A lot would be expected from Sarkar after his superb execution of the cult classic, Parineeta which also gave Bollywood a promising actress, Vidya Balan. So lets see how the film has faired with me atleast.

First thing first, LCMD is painfully dragging in the first half causing the audience to yawn and murmur and unfolds into a mediocre masala in the latter half. The director tries to make the transition of a lady from a 'girl-next door' image to an 'Escort' (u know what I mean) with so much despair. This in undoubtedly the most critical part of the film and I have to say the film fails to convince the very transition. The girl being the elder of the two sisters, has to deal with lots of household issues, the same old "makaan, bigli ki bill, do waqt ki roti blah blah blah" which we are seeing for the umpteenth time. So Rani makes a move to Mumbai in search of money and being underqualified for a white-corner job, finds it hard to sustain. She tries to make living out of jobs which she herself is not comfortable with. A leading call center MD uses her to his advantage and tells her "u might not be qualified but ur anatomy is good" which along with the desperation for money prompts our heroine to enter the bemire world of prostitution.

One question to the director. You have just put a question mark on certain Indian women that they are smutty enough to go into pros without even trying hard to make a living. Accepted that Rani is doing all these for her family but didn't she find a better way or shouldn't she atleast try for a better way? A big blatant NO is the director's answer! I think he himself was so desperate to tell a story on prostitution but in that case he shouldn't have taken the pain to convince the audience "this is how women shift to call girls" and then failing miserably to do so. The first half tests your patience unlike the second where Kunal Kapoor and Konkona provides some lighter moments, the saving grace one has to say.

Abhishek Bachchan has only few scenes in the movie but he takes his character far too seriously and is a liability in an already crappy melodrama. Konkona is good, Kunal is good too but it's Rani who is supposed to be the heart and soul of the film, who fails to gain sympathy from the audience. A happy ending is the last thing the already fagged audience wanted to see after a dismal 150 mins. The film is too lengthy and is neither a commercial product nor an intellectual take on one of the most sensitive and malefic evils. The script is the weakest link but yeah the dialogues are equally awful. LCMD gives away a deceptive message to Indian women and I feel they shouldn't take it. A pat on the back for Aditya Chopra for putting his money on a subject dating back to 1960 :-). I am asking him, why on earth?

Verdict: Worth a miss !

Oct 7, 2007

Raceday - KIMI triumphs !

Courtesy: Evenstar Saima

2007 Chinese Grand Prix

<span class=Kimi Raikkonen and Fernando Alonso kept the world championship battle alive by finishing first and second in the Chinese Grand Prix, while Lewis Hamilton retired after going off the road in the pit entry.

The result closes Alonso to within four points of Hamilton going into the final round, with Raikkonen a further three points adrift.

Hamilton had dominated the wet opening stages, but stayed out too long on extremely worn intermediates tyres, and ran wide into the gravel in the pitlane entry when he finally tried to make a stop. The McLaren became beached in the gravel and the championship leader was out of the race.

As Hamilton began to suffer badly with tyre wear, Raikkonen closed right in on the leader. The McLaren was sliding around wildly and lapping 10 seconds slower than it had earlier on.

After rebuffing several of Raikkonen's passing attempts, Hamilton eventually ran wide at Turn 8 on lap 28, allowing the Ferrari through.

Raikkonen then pulled away by up to six seconds per lap as Hamilton struggled, and Alonso - who finally passed Massa at the hairpin on lap 26 - closed in on his title rival at an even faster rate.

I knew Kimi would be victorious. What a fantastic performance - he made all the difference when it counted before his first pit stop and never stopped pushing till the end.

He was indeed the heaviest of the top four in qualifying, so it outlines his qualifying lap in particular, compared to Lewis' light run for pole, as quite impressive. He was also struggling a little with the slippery track but kept control and put pressure on Hamilton. It was an emotional win of Kimi's, personally to me, because sometimes dreams do come true for once and our dream was for Kimi to win this race. It felt right and justified after the poor circumstances at Japan, and most importantly - he deserved it! No matter how frustrating this season has been for the fans with the interference of huge egos, bitching, court rooms and penalties, Kimi brought a smile to my face. The fans there must have loved it. The race itself was brilliant with plenty of battles going on and superb drives.

We knew Kimi could do it and congratulations to him, the team, and the fans.
~ Keep flying Kimi!

chi_flag.<span class=gif picture by SaimaAzam"> Quotes

-Raikkonen hopes Brazil win brings title
Kimi Raikkonen - 1st:
"I am very happy! It is a really great result for me and the whole team, who done a truly excellent job," said Raikkonen. who gave Ferrari their 200th victory in Formula One. "We needed this win and we got it. At the start of the race, I had a lot of understeer but then the situation improved.

I was one of the last to switch to dry tyres but this was a help as after a little while the rain began to fall again. Even after the second stop I had a bit of understeer, but as before, the situation improved in the final stages. I knew Alonso was very quick but I was in full control of the situation. The car overall was working well both in the wet and in the dry. Last week in Fuji, we were unlucky but today things went right for us.

"We have had yet another example that in this sport anything can happen. The situation in the drivers' classification is still difficult, but I will try everything to win in Brazil, even if the final outcome does not just depend on what we do. It should be a great battle, very hard to predict and interesting."

Sunday quotes: Ferrari - Felipe Massa - 3rd: "All in all, finishing on the podium in a race like this is very important and I am very happy for the team. There is one race to go: anything can happen and we must continue to work to stay ahead of our rivals."

Jean Todt: "It is great to be able to celebrate Scuderia Ferrari's two hundredth victory in Formula 1, here in Shanghai, at the end of a difficult race, further complicated by the unpredictability of the changes in the weather. Kimi brings his total tally of the season to five and this is the team's eighth. He drove an extraordinary race, without committing the slightest error."

Luca Baldisserri: "This was probably one of the most difficult races of the season, characterized by very unstable weather, with the rain coming and going. After the first pit stop, Kimi gradually made up ground on Hamilton and could have got past earlier but for the yellow flags. Then, as the track was drying, Kimi stepped up the pace and controlled a possible attack from Alonso."

Pos Driver Team Time

1. Raikkonen Ferrari (B) 1h37:58.395
2. Alonso McLaren-Mercedes (B) + 9.800
3. Massa Ferrari (B) + 12.800
4. Vettel Toro Rosso-Ferrari (B) + 53.500
5. Button Honda (B) + 68.600
6. Liuzzi Toro Rosso-Ferrari (B) + 73.600
7. Heidfeld BMW Sauber (B) + 74.200
8. Coulthard Red Bull-Renault (B) + 80.700
9. Kovalainen Renault (B) + 81.100
10. Webber Red Bull-Renault (B) + 84.600
11. Fisichella Renault (B) + 86.600
12. Wurz Williams-Toyota (B) + 1 Lap
13. Trulli Toyota (B) + 1 Lap
14. Sato Super Aguri-Honda (B) + 1 Lap
15. Barrichello Honda (B) + 1 Lap
16. Rosberg Williams-Toyota (B) + 2 Laps
17. Yamamoto Spyker-Ferrari (B) + 3 Laps

Fastest lap: Massa, 1:37.454

Not classified/retirements:
Driver Team On lap

Kubica BMW Sauber (B) 34
Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes (B) 31
R.Schumacher Toyota (B) 26
Sutil Spyker-Ferrari (B) 25
Davidson Super Aguri-Honda (B) 12

Sep 28, 2007

An interesting season so far?

Formula 1 has always been a force to reckon when we learn more about the sport itself. Unlike Cricket, Hockey, Football this sport is a consequence of so many brains working as a team and providing the best they can for 2 people, the drivers. Also, there is a lot of money involved not in organizing it but to get the best out of your car. Formula 1 is special......

Let's take a look at the 2007 season so far with 14 races completed and 3 drivers battling the hell out of each other to gain supremacy. As if everything was planned earlier, this time also there are only 2 teams who can provide a car which can triumph in any circuit. Ferrari and McLaren. After the "loss" of Schumacher who had retired after a stupendous career, Ferrari found their new supremo in Kimi Raikkonen. The Finn has already proved that he is the fastest driver on track by far when things go right. When I say things going right, it definitely won't mean running out of power like in Spain or suffering a mechanical failure as happened in Germany. We may expect all these in any team but Ferrari. This time around, the car is just not performing well when needed unlike their nearest rival, McLaren.

Inspite of all these discomforts, Kimi was able to win 4 races and finish on podium on 5 occasions. Good job but is it enough? Definitely not when your rivals are giving 100% reliability on track. Talking about the Finn's rivals, Lewis Hamilton and Fernando Alonso are a touch lucky to see their silver McLaren finish in each and every race. The Spaniard may be a world champion but he lacks providing that extra comfort level to the whole team which Schumi used to give when he was in Ferrari. Alonso just cannot find himself out of controversies, the latest being the spy-saga. I would be shocked like hell if I see him drive for McLaren next year. Ron Dennis might have pissed off big time after expecting so much from a double world champion and seeing him crib like a baby after each race. Comeon dude, accept that a rookie is beating the crap out of you and you are just not good enough.

Rookie? who? Lewis Hamilton, the first black driver to race in Formula 1, means business. 11 podiums in 14 races is just exceptional but having said that, I have to admit, McLaren never looked like a limping gadget. For sure, it has done wonders for Lewis' career but to outpace Alonso was something special. He maybe Ron's baby but he has the passion when out on track, on his own which we see in the Schumis and Kimis. He is one to watch out for even if he doesn't win the championship this time.

So the fight between the top 3 drivers may have captivated so many souls who have F1 in their blood. But let's face it, this season has been utterly boring from the racing point of view. Time and again we see a driver taking chequered flag from pole. Not a good sight for those who wish to see pure racing. We have to blame the FIA for all these simply because a Formula 1 car, nowadays, does everything for you. The driver just have to press the throttle as much as possible and the car won't slip or slide in any tough corner. The traction control provided in the car just get the better of those warn out tyres and we seldom see overtaking. Hence, the driver can show his true colors rarely. For someone like Raikkonen, just going from start to finish as if he is having his own race is just crappy. In 2005, we might have seen him overtake Fisichella in the last lap of an F1 race but I am confident, we are not gonna see that this time around. Now, the FIA seems to have learned and they are all set to ban traction control in 2008 season. Wow ! That would provide some interesting spectacles which you may repeat umpteen times or maybe it will take you to the Schumi or Senna era where nothing but bravery was the key.

Let's wait and see !

Aug 14, 2007

Nadiya Kollapetta Rathri........a throbbing ride all the way !

After a disappointing “Pathaka” K. Madhu has bounced back with a well etched out Suresh Gopi starrer Naadiya Kollapetta Rathri (NKR). As the name suggests, it is a full fledged investigation story with twists and turns aided by lot of blood. Not a pleasing sight for kids or elders when you see three cute babes stranded to death and amazingly in the same compartment of a train. The story starts off in a train and ends up in a train as well. The producer would have spent some extra penny to shoot those illustrious scenes in a train but some, quite evidently are nothing but good use of sets or good art direction.

What you expect from a Suresh Gopi thriller is what you get in NKR though it can be a path-breaking film just like his previous Chintamani Kolacase. If blood, gore and mouth watering violence were the trademark of that Shaji Kailas film, K. Madhu doesn’t go haywire with the script but instead provides us a classic thriller. The story starts with the crew of RACT, a railway crime investigating team lead by Gopi himself attack a passenger terrorist and kill him. Perfect introduction. I just cannot remember his screen name because it is a tongue twisterJ. Upon extreme pressure and demand, the RACT team starts the reinvestigation of some murders which happened under mysterious circumstances. They kick start their campaign with the investigation of the crime whose victims were Nadiya (Kavya) and 2 other gals which occurred a month back.

Nadiya who is good at shooting is found unconscious after being stabbed in the 1st A.C compartment. She is taken to hospital but the doctors declare her “brain dead”. Nadira is her twin sister and she almost loses her heart out after seeing her sister’s condition. She has her interest cut down in classical dance and even her mannerisms are just the other side of what you see in Nadiya who is bold. Kavya to be fair has given justice to her double role and it would be the very first appreciation which I as a viewer give her over all these yearsJ. There are a lot of characters involved and it is evident from the moment go that each of them has a part to play in the crucial climax where things are unfolded in a break-neck pace.

Suresh Gopi will obviously unfold the mystery but it’s the path he follows to do so which makes you feel, “yeah this is something different” and finally the answer to “who is the killer” can’t be said in one word cos the killer is beyond your imagination. To be honest, the two murders one of a dancer and the other of an NDTV reporter have hardly anything to do with the original story. Being clever, the director reveals the Nadiya mystery only in the end picking his order to perfection cos otherwise the audience would feel as if there were a plethora of events which were completely a wastage of time. It is here you see the role of an experienced director in K. Madhu when he handles those otherwise difficult scenes with ease.

The script by A.K Sajan after Chintamani Kolacase has lived up to the standards set by the other investigative thrillers. Infact, it is amazing to see how he had managed to pen a story like this and tie up the loose strings which could have affected the totality of the film. Background score is just awful and it tests your patience undoubtedly. The cast and crew are just fine with Kavya and Suresh Gopi sharing the bulk of the credit. Suresh Gopi’s costume designer needs a pat on his back to make a jaded old “commissioner” look handsome. Cotton shirts, trendy jeans and on top of that sunglasses makes our Hero look younger. On the whole, NKR is a spell binding thriller for around 150 mins though it has its downside as well which I don’t want to mention. It won’t disappoint you.

My verdict: A superb thriller !

Aug 8, 2007

McLaren : "Take your ass off the car"

McLaren has reportedly given their Spanish driver Fernando Alonso an option to leave the team after this season. What has prompted them to spit a statement like this to a former champion? Simple, its the Spaniard's attitude in and out of the track which has given him the penalty he deserved. He was never a happy man driving the McLaren especially when he was outpaced and shadowed by a rookie out of all people. He wouldn't have expected this on his entry to McLaren.

Alonso naturally would have expected a #1 status in the team after back to back championship wins with Renault. What received him was something he wouldn't have guessed even in his wildest dreams. Lewis Hamilton a born talent, drove his heart out in his first 9 races and finished in the podium each time. Stunning !

What left was "Alonso's cribbing". Day in day out if you look at the F1 websites all over, there will be news about the McLaren drivers' drift. Even, there was a speculation about he leaving the team in between the season but that is now unlikely. Nevertheless, Ron Dennis seems to be pissed off cos of the rivalry between Lewis and Fernando. Never know, who he is gonna be ditched from the team but right now the lot seems to have gone in Alonso's way.

Fernando Alonso having done a marathon "pitstop" in Hungary has just proved how dirty F1 tricks can get. Impeding his teammate from driving a hot lap was the last thing expected from a driver, especially when there were only minutes to go before the qualifier ends. Absolutely ridiculous as some newspapers pointed out except in Spain.

Someone needs to go to the double world champion and teach him the definitions of words like "dignity", "teamwork", "team - first of all" and of course "maturity". In Alonso's case fortune didn't favor the brave when he won the title rather it was fortune's turn to misbehave and that too twice. At the end of the day, its Alonso who is the loser and as some pointed out, a disgrace to Formula 1.

Grow up dude........

Jul 9, 2007

Kimi back with the resurgence and so is Ferrari !

The best way to get the better of your critics is to keep your mouth shut and perform, none other than Kimi would know it better. Its an answer for those who said "Kimi doesn't have it in him". Well, can they say this now? They can't. Two thumping victories have confirmed his return to the centre stage. One leading the Ferrari 1-2 in the beautiful Magny Cours, and the most recent one in Silverstone in front of Lewis Hamilton's home crowd. Thats a sweet victory, no two opinions.

Its his 12th career victory and 3rd of the season which 95,000 odd British fans witnessed and boy, did he drive the crap out of his rivals. Pipping out the McLarens in 2nd and 3rd positions is no easy job especially after being at the receiving end for most of the season. He had his misfortunes honestly when his Scarlet Ferrari refused to pull off at Spain and when a traffic studded Monaco G.P saw him finishing 8th and being lapped by the McLarens. That hurts and it did hurt him but thats when you see a champion carving his way through the stupendous circuit in Silverstone for the 60th time and on his way breaking the 4 winless ducks on the same circuit.

It didn't start well for the team from Italy as Feilpe Massa suffered an "unknown" problem which the Ferrari techies failed to explain, in the initial lap forcing all the cars to warm up one more lap reducing the count to 59. He did a wonderful job to finsh at 5th having pulled off a series of overtaking maneuvers and posting the second best lap time after Kimster. Kimi, behind Lewis didn't allow the leader to pull away with a lighter car rather kept up with the McLaren and almost getting the better of the rival just before Lewis made his first stop. But then Lewis was overshadowed and outpaced by both Kimi and Fernando. It was an end of what you call a virtual dream for a rookie to win in front of his home crowd.

Surprisingly, it was Alonso with a shorter pitstop (6.3 sec), who managed to come in front of the Iceman after and he further extended the lead from the Ferrari driver to 5.8 seconds before going for a longer 2nd stop. And that's when you see the flying finn indeed flying. 6 stunning laps and one would ask, where is Fernando? After lap 44 when Kimi exited the pitlane for the second time, he was 4.3 secs ahead of Alonso and unless he makes a mistake or two, Kimi was sure to finish ahead of all. 60 flawless laps and that registered victory no: 12 for the Iceman. The local boy was a further 35 secs away substantiating how far McLaren are lagging behind their rivals.

Santander British G.P :
Winner: Kimi Raikkonen from Fernando Alonso
Fastest Lap: Kimi Raikkonen

Kimi is the man to beat !!!

Jun 18, 2007

Jhoom Barabar Jhoom - frivolous

Time and again, I am making the same mistake. A pleasant Sunday evening turned out to be one to forget after watching Shaad Ali’s latest offering, Jhoom Barabar Jhoom. There is lot said and done about bollywood love pastries. But when its from the prestigious Yash Raj banner, who have given us some memorable films earlier, we tend to get carried away. Same happened to me when I really had some better works to do yesterday………………if one ask me, why KK? Can’t blame him.
So lets dig the crap ! The film kick starts with Abhshek joining Priety to share a table in the busiest London Railway station, both waiting for their relatives/friends who are on the way from Birmingham. Alas, the train is 2 hrs late. Abhishek, a typical Punjabi, outspoken, cool dude, decides to engage himself with the cute looking gal sitting next to him. They start telling each other their respective stories about how they met their fiancées, Lara and Bobby. These lead to some flashback scenes which comprises of two lovely songs picturised in charismatic locales including the famous Louvre Museum (ticket to Hollywood). Abhi and Priety really enjoy each other’s company and that’s evident when Priety says “train kuch jaldi hi aa gaya”. They diverge only to receive their buddies and walk home. Man, that’s when you see the funny looking Amitabh Bachhan with a stupid grin, joining the station along with the title track. Make no mistake, he doesn’t have a role, but still comes in between to “look after” his son. Its interval……………………but tell me, what is in the first 1 hour. Gosh !
As expected, our lovers just cannot stop thinking about their sweethearts, and that’s when they reveal to the already tiresome audience that Bobby and Lara are just imaginary characters. Earlier, Priety didn’t want to spend time with an “ajnabee” and that’s why she created Bobby out of nothing just to avoid our small B. Now, they decide to meet at “Jharokha”, a dance competition event. Priety finds a “new” Bobby who is actually an optician with childish looks and antics. Lara, a whore, is picked up by Abhi with the help of his friend. All four meet……..bang ! 2 songs in 15 mins. The climax is more or less expected and to the audiences’ relief, the film ends.
Music is just awesome, all five songs rocking. The lead pair performances are…….ho, a reluctant ok. But its Bobby, who comes up with a phenomenal performance. Only he is the saving grace in a movie which tests your patience. Shaad Ali has a long way to go in picking the right story for an instant hit. Its not even old wine but is a combination of confused script given by a confused mind. Its definitely a bad idea if you think you can have some timepass during JBJ. The media has given the movie 2 stars out of 5. I wonder why not less !

Verdict: Just stay away.

Apr 15, 2007

Bahrain G.P review

Courtesy: ESPNStar

London ( - Felipe Massa finally makes amends for Malaysia and the disappointment in Australia by clinching his first grand prix win of the season on Sunday.
However, once again it was Lewis Hamilton, who grabbed the headlines after he secured another second place finish and in so doing becomes the first driver in the history of the sport to finish on the podium in his first three races as well as jointly leading the Drivers’ Championship.
Kimi Räikkönen had to settle for third place and joins Hamilton and Fernando Alonso in a three-way leadership battle.
McLaren boss Ron Dennis had nothing but praise for his rookie driver saying: “Lewis has already surpassed all expectations. He has a confidence devoid of all arrogance.”
However, this weekend the pressure was on Massa to deliver what he has been threatening to do in the first two races, only to have been thwarted by a gearbox failure in Melbourne and then threw away his lead at the start of the race in Sepang last weekend.
A delighted Massa was clearly relieved if nothing else to have finally got his own back on the rookie driver screeching over the car radio after crossing the line: “I needed this result. I did it. I did it. Thank you.”
The Brazilian admitted afterwards that everything had fallen into place. “The results in the first two races were not like I expected. I think something was missing, especially in the first race when we had a problem and then what happened in the second race, with mistakes and also something missing,” he told reporters in the post race press conference.
“This time we put everything together and I’m really pleased for the whole team. The job they made here, the strategy, the set-up, everything, I’m really pleased. But now we need to push even harder because McLaren is quite close.”
The anticipation for another blistering getaway at the lights from Hamilton was reaching fever pitch in the sweltering desert heat but the Brazilian held his nerve and ensured he kept his lead going into the first corner.
A rueful Hamilton was not too disappointed however, especially after resoundingly beating his team-mate by over 12 seconds.
“I didn’t get as good a start as Felipe, he did very well down to the first corner. He managed to keep his place and I had to make sure I stayed as close behind as possible to maybe have a chance on the first lap, but I think we were fairly well matched,” he insisted.
“I think this weekend we have definitely closed the gap to Ferrari and to have another second in only my third race, I couldn’t ask for more. There’s only one more step for me and we’ll be pushing and making sure that in Barcelona we’ll be just as quick.”
Räikkönen was unable to challenge Hamilton for second place, insisting he now knows why he is not as quick as his team-mate.
“We got third place and we know where we are losing time, so hopefully in the next test we can find something which is a bit better for me.”
For once, the double world champion Alonso looked all out of sorts struggling to keep pace with the front-runners and eventually succumbing to the vastly improved Nick Heidfeld, who grabbed fourth place with 24 laps remaining.
His team-mate Robert Kubica finally got on to the scoreboard with three valuable points in sixth whilst Toyota’s Jarno Trulli managed to keep Renault’s Giancarlo Fisichella at bay to grab seventh despite boss Flavio Briatore imploring Fisi to pass his former driver.
Once again the Italian was given the ‘get a move on’ call over the car radio: “pass Trulli - come on” alas to no avail.
Further down the grid order it was disappointment for both Red Bull cars as David Coulthard retired with a broken driveshaft after an impressive drive which saw the Scotsman carve his way from 21st to 12th place, whilst Mark Webber, who had been in the points in seventh, retired with their Achilles heel: a broken gearbox.
The Australian was none too pleased afterwards saying: “Bloody frustrating and that’s not good enough. I’ve been here too often.”
Both Super Aguri’s fail to finish with Anthony Davidson, who at one point had been running in sixth place, had an engine failure just four laps from the line, whilst Sato’s Honda engine blew on lap 35.
It was another miserable weekend for Honda’s Jenson Button, who failed to make it past turn four on the very first lap after he spun trying to avoid Takuma Sato, which in turn caused a chain reaction behind resulting in Toro Rosso’s Scott Speed to crash out and deploying the safety car.
As the sand settled once again for another year on the Sakhir circuit, the Formula One championship has never been so wide open with three drivers all level on the same points.
Spain cannot come soon enough in four week’s time when battle resumes in May and Lewis Hamilton will try to go one better and secure his maiden Formula One victory.

Move of the day: Heidfeld taking Alonso on turn four with 24 laps to the flag
Driver of the Day: Felipe Massa

Mar 27, 2007

Sivaji's music update

Check out the link and download what you call some peppy tunes with the right mix of rap and melody. Here are the list of songs

1. Sahaana Saaral Thoovutho....... Udit Narayan n Shreya Ghosal
A class song with exceptional voice modulation and recording. Udit as always takes his songs to an extra level when it comes with Rahman. Shreya is adequate but she doesnt have much to do honestly.

2. Vaa Ji Vaa Ji En Jeevan Sivaji....... Hariharan n Sadhana Sargam
A peppy number with punch music and catchy lyrics. No doubt, a winner on the cards.

3. Oru Koodai Sunlight......Blaze n Suresh Peters
Not bad but only the picturisation can make this a hit number. A complete rap tone in the song.

More to arrive soon.....

Feb 28, 2007

Pachaikili Muthucharam - worth ur time and money !

Back to my business.

Oscar Films and Gautham Menon join hands yet again after the commercial success of VV but this time going with the supreme hero SarathKumar whose career was sagging after some colossal flops, not now though. Alas, Gautham went on to remake a so called average grosser in Hollywood, “Derailed” without deviating much from the original. Running out of stories kya?
One thing is pretty much common in Minnale, RHTDM, Kakka Kakka and VV – all were fast paced. Indeed Pachaikili Muthucharam too is fast paced with some slick photography sandwiched with crisp editing. First Jyothika starrer after her marriage, Kollywood debue for Milind, new girl Andrea all add upto the movie’s highlights. Released in almost 6 centres in Chennai city itself, Pachaikili has created a wave which I guess is unstoppable atleast for a few days.
The story. Venkatesh (Sarath) is a medical rep whose days’ half are spend in suburban trains going through the eternal Chennai. He is quite happy and humble and doesn’t demand too much other than maintaining a settled life. Radhika (Andrea) who is a house wife is still passionate about her husband and their love is always envious. Nanda is their only son who suffers from premature diabetics, that being the only worry for the couple. Radhika tries to concentrate more towards nursing her son rather than being with Venkatesh. Obviously, our hero is frustrated over this averted behavior.
One fine day, Venkatesh meets Geetha (Jyothika) in one of his journeys to office. He is attracted to her girl next door looks and friendly nature. They soon become friends and soon become more than that J. He deliberately tries to let his mind do the proceedings rather than sticking to reality and being a good husband. They both find themselves in a hotel room somewhere in the outskirts of Chennai only to witness an unexpected event which would change their lives forever. Geetha becomes a rape victim to Milind after he confronts both of them in their suit. Venkatesh is beaten to half-life and he could only see what’s happening to his lover.
Milind finds that they are not a married couple and hence tries to blackmail both of them for money. Venkatesh ends up giving lakhs before actually confessing to his wife. There is a sudden twist in the second half and the film altogether creates a bizarre mood which is nicely crafted. The latter part is all about how the hero manages to convince his wife and how he confronts the bad guys.
In an out and out Sarathkumar film, he excels though looks a bit jaded. One has to say the casting has been prefect as all characters look realistic. Milind Soman has come out with a sterling performance even in a language which is foreign to him. The new girl too looks 100 million bucks but her dialogue delivery needs improvement. Harris Jayaraj has once again shown that he is the perfect match for Gautham’s style of film making and even the background score, as always, makes the film gripping. “Unakkul Naane” and “Un siripinil” are the pick of the songs. Yet there are certain flaws like first half being lagging, some censorable scenes and the lengthy climax.

On the whole, Pachaikili is crisp at 2 hrs 25 mins and is recommended for those who like thrilling family dramas.

Jan 4, 2007

Notebook - A sensible extravaganza !


Its yet another xmas, yet another new year and its yet another review from the ever-active KK :).Kripa theatre was the location this time and goodness me, ended up watching an unforgettable cinema in Rosshan Andrew's latest venture, Notebook.
First thing, "this is not a painkili love story". No superstars, no item numbers, no explosions, no double meanings. These are some glimpses of Notebook and let me tell you, the film still works to a large extent. Seira, Pooja and Sreedevi are doing their 12th in Lords Academy and they share thick friendship. Seira is the bubbly and naughty girl in the batch and she is always the centre of attraction for both teachers and students. Always comes late in class, an LHite who believes day scholars are fortunate to eat what they wish and hence both Seira and Sreedevi eats from Pooja's house every weekend. Pooja, the school headgirl, is smart and a bit more matured than the other two while Sreedevi is soft and lovable. Pooja's mother who is a widow nourishes and babies them as her children. Of course they fight each other like any other friends but there is nothing more in those little pranks.
Suraj, a 12B student, is considered to be the macho among the gals and they simply fall for him (Don't know why:). After some really funny circumstances, Sreedevi and Suraj fall in love but being immature and in fear of words passing by; they keep quiet about their relationship. During the tour, they somehow find some time to spend each other but the inevitable happens. Sreedevi become pregnant, yes I spelled that word properly :P, and her friends just cannot believe what had happened. Hang on. Upon the advices from Seira and Pooja, Sreedevi doesn't reveal the matter to Suraj cos her friends feared that it may force him to depart from the school and from her friend's life for ever. Sensible thought :) Alas, they have no other option but to abort it. Believe it or not, Seira somehow manages to get Sreedevi into the operation theatre by telling lots of unconventional yet convincing lies to the doctor who is supposed to do the operation.
From this point, the film takes a U-turn as Sreedevi dies in the hospital and Seira and Pooja escapes from the whole scene. The principal and the authorities come to know about it and they call up both Seira and Pooja to discuss the issue in front of Sreedevi's father and the investigating police officer. Seira accepts the whole fact cos she regrets the fact that she has forced sreedevi to do it without telling her parents. She gets scolding from virtually everyone and now its time for Pooja to speak up. She bloughs that she is unaware of the incident and is able to convince the authorities that she is innocent.
Seira will be dismissed from the school and she is understandably furious over her "innocent" friend. Will Pooja have regrets? Will they unite again? Will Suraj come to know about this? All these are revealed in a 10 mins climax where the film moves in breathtaking pace. One of the main reasons of the movie's success is its background score and some commendable camera placing. It has a slick look and Ooty is seen as a heaven. Music by Mejo Joseph is adequate as there are only 4 songs. Roma as Seira, the best of the three, is a delight to watch. But it's the director who has the last laugh as he is able to transform himself from the star studded cult classic Udayanu Tharam to Notebook with ease. 3 crores extravaganza is seen all through out the film.
On the downside, the hero is a pastry and he has a long way to go in acting. First half is uneventful though passable with Seira enjoying the possession. On the whole, Notebook is indeed a brave attempt and it takes more braveness to bring it to the theatres along with the biggies like BabaKalyani and Palunku. At the end of the day, people will find this as a sensible yet controversial film.

Too good to turn down !