Month: September 2012

Sleep Tight (Mientras Duermes) Review

Here is a review from our guest blogger Miss FooFantastic from FrightFest in London, she’ll be posting a couple of reviews here, so if you are a horror fan, keep your eye out for them. (this one I’m actually quite looking forward to)

From [REC] co-director Jaume Balagueró, comes ‘Mientras Duermes’, titled ‘Sleep Tight’ in English. Moving away from zombie scares as seen in [REC], Jaume delivers a menacing psychological thriller, with a strong lead performance by Luis Tosar. This movie will keep you on the edge of your seat from start to finish as you’ll be keen to find out what the hell is going on, bringing you to a slow realisation of something much more malicious than you could imagine.

The story revolves around Cesar (Luis Tosar), a janitor of a fancy apartment building in Barcelona. Cesar has an unhealthy obsession with bubbly resident Clara (Marta Etura), each night hiding in her apartment waiting for her to return from work, only to sneak beside her in bed at night. He also goes through great lengths to even make her life more difficult, so he can seemingly play the hero. However, throughout the movie, it becomes clear that Cesar’s motives behind his actions are not purely because he’s obsessed with the person of Clara, it goes beyond that. And it’s discovering his actual motives that show what a miserable and mean character sits behind this seemingly innocent and helpful janitor. And still, as the viewer you get completely sucked into Cesar’s little world, and even get nervous for him during those moments where it seems he might get caught out.

Some elements of humour and light-heartedness to this unsettling tale are provided by the other residents in the building. There’s the bratty little girl bribing Cesar for some interesting objects, as she’s aware of what Cesar’s been up to during the night. Then there’s the old lady with her dogs, who gets an unwanted reality check from Cesar, making you laugh out loud, but also feel so extremely sad for the lady.

What makes this movie so awesome is the whole uncovering of why Cesar is doing what he does, and also, how far he gets in doing this.  Luis Tosar plays an excellent anti-hero, making you question your own character for having some sympathy at some points during the movie for such an evil person. The ending will leave you feel sick to your stomach, and you can imagine the heart-wrenching pain and disgust of what Clara must feel at that very moment. This is a wonderfully dark movie, maintaining a fine balance between creepiness and suspense, and most of all, it leaves you feeling very much disturbed.

Fun fact: Main actor and actress Luis Tosar and Marta Etura were married in real life. While they were still married when filming this movie, they are currently separated.

Watch this if: you like psychological thrillers, and can handle a few minutes of blood. Also recommended if you’re curious to see how evil people can actually be.

Don’t watch this if: you’re the type to check for monsters in closets, under beds, etc. before going to sleep. Also, if for some reason the janitor in your building/office creeps you out, you’d better skip this one.

 

Here’s the trailer:

 

Your Chance to Win 2 DVD’s of GBH

Here’s your chance to win DVD’s for the gritty new British Crime Flick hitting shelves in October.

We’ll be reviewing the movie on Upodcast very soon and looking at the trailer, it looks Extremely British.

‘Don’ You Go Rounin’ Roun to Re Ro’!

Award winning independent film company Revolver Entertainment releases the gritty crime thriller GBH on DVD from 1st October 2012. The film is a powerful, no-holds-barred British tale of criminality, morality, justice and vengeance set amidst the stark and violent backdrop of the 2011 London riots.

Producer and directed by Simon Phillips (The Rise And Fall Of A White Collar Hooligan), GBH takes as its core premise the age-old battle between good and evil, and sets the modern, urban story on the harsh streets of West London, as the capital is battered and burned during the infamous London riots. Boasting a talented veteran and newcomer British cast, including Nick Nevern (The Sweeney, The Rise And Fall Of A White Collar Hooligan, Terry) Kellie Shirley (EastEnders) Jenna Harrison (Against The Dark, Telling Lies) Roland Manookian (The Rise & Fall of a White Collar Hooligan, RocknRolla, The Business) Con O’Neil (Frank, Telstar: The Joe Meek Story) Steven Berkoff (The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, A Clockwork Orange) and Peter Barrett (The Rise And Fall Of A White Collar Hooligan, Jack Falls), the story centres around lead character Damien performed by Nick Nevern, who is a London ‘copper’ with a criminal past he’s trying to forget.

Before signing up to the police force he ran with a vicious football gang with a penchant for violence and intimidation. Now that Damien is on the other side of the law, he faces a tough decision – side with his old crew or protect London as it burns and rioters run amok?  Things are complicated further when he becomes romantically involved with fellow police officer Louise (Kellie Shirley, Eastenders), and is helpless to protect her when she is viciously beaten and raped by one of his former gang members. Damien decides to take matters into his own hands, with brutal and devastating consequences.

Billed as the British thriller film of the year, GBH packs a punch like no other and depicts the gritty realities of inner-city deprivation and social disillusionment, as a city is torn-apart and one man desperately fights for justice.

To celebrate the release of ‘GBH’ on DVD from 1st of October 2012, we are giving away 2 DVDs of the film. For your chance to win, simply answer the following question and send your replies to upodcasting@gmail.com:

Q.    Who plays the lead role of Damien in GBH?

GBH releases on DVD from 1st October 2012.

Here’s the trailer:

@asimburney

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Remnants Review

Here is a review from our guest blogger Miss FooFantastic from FrightFest in London, she’ll be posting a couple of reviews here, so if you are a horror fan, keep your eye out for them.

A movie such as Remnants is a perfect example of Frightfest being more than just about films dedicated to showing flying limbs, blood splatters, or creepy supernatural forces terrorizing us humans. Frightfest movies are not all purely about blood and gore: it’s about anything that can make anyone feel uncomfortable. Director Peter Engert shows us a bleak scenario of the future with his movie Remnants, which can feel frightening for a lot of people, especially if you expect the world to end anytime soon.

 

I had completely different expectations of this movie; therefore I guess these expectations did affect my overall opinion of it. Introduced as a post-apocalyptic movie, taking place after World War III, Remnants is about a group of strangers ending up together in a cellar in rural Texas, struggling for their survival. The introduction on the Frightfest site also mentioned the main characters fending off ‘…hordes of terrified, dying refugees as they attempt to endure the devastating holocaust’. Well, unfortunately in my mind I translated that into some degree of zombie action (I guess that’s what happens when you watch so many horror movies). Although some zombie-like characters appear in the movie, they’re not really as you would expect, and that’s as close to a zombie you’ll see in this movie.

 

The main character is a young doctor named Hunter (C.J. Thomason), who ends up seeking shelter with 8 other random people in a dark cellar, in order to avoid radiation exposure from a recent nuclear attack. Among this group you’ll find the typical range of different characters: the traumatised nervous young girl, the confident woman, the old grandpa that will die sooner or later anyway. Of course a stereotypical angry redneck cannot be avoided if you have the movie taking place in rural Texas, and here is where we meet Brad (Edward Furlong), who’s with his pregnant wife (another must-have in situations where random strangers end up together). Since the majority of the movie takes place within a dark cellar room, you can imagine claustrophobia and the accompanying human reactions to feature heavily in the film, and it did. Unnecessary fights breaking out, tough decisions to be made, the movie did do a good job in capturing the tension, anguish, and despair the characters are experiencing.

Towards the end, the movie goes into the weirdest transition of camera style ever, which left me somewhat confused as I thought the movie was ending there, but it didn’t. Instead, you had a few shots of the alternative camera style, and then it continued again to its usual style for another 10 minutes or so. I’m not really sure what the intention of this was, but once the movie ended, my mind was more engaged with what was behind that camera style switch than with the whole movie.

 

Overall, the movie does leave you feeling a bit grim. Although I’d say it’s partly feeling grim about the fate of the main characters, but also partly about the disappointment of having watched 90, mostly uneventful, minutes of a bunch of people stuck in a cellar. What’s interesting is that the movie does show a more plausible concept of ‘zombies’. This does mean though that you won’t be seeing any quick-paced raging 28 Days later type of zombies, nor the classic slow, brain-eating ones. Although it was an interesting concept, if could have been executed better in my opinion. The movie is too much skewed towards drama, and is missing any true classic horror elements.

 

Watch this if: you’re more of a fan of dramatic movies, rather than your typical horror movie. Remnants is more about human behaviour in times of despair rather than anything else.

Don’t watch this if: you envisage the end of the world to feature zombies in the ‘traditional’ sense, such as in 28 Days later, The Walking Dead etc.

Here’s the trailer:

 

 

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Maniac Review: Battle of the Remakes

Here is a Battle of the Remakes review from our guest blogger Miss FooFantastic from FrightFest in London, she’ll be posting a couple of reviews here, so if you are a horror fan, keep your eye out for them.

 

Of the five movies that I watched at Frightfest the 13th, I’d have to say this one was my favourite. With a simple, straightforward story, and a very disturbed main character, director Franck Khalfoun leaves enough room for what matters in these type of movies: lots of gore, uneasy moments, and psycho creepiness.

Our Maniac is a man called Frank, who owns a mannequin shop left by his late mother. A strange fascination with women, mixed with terrorizing feelings of hatred, drives Frank to stalk and kill girls that catch his eye, and keep a souvenir of his victims. One day he meets photographer Anna, and a friendship develops, but this doesn’t stop Frank’s unusual obsession of collecting womens’ scalps.

The movie is a remake of William Lustig’s 1980s slasher ‘Maniac’, which I didn’t know at first. My initial plan was to watch the original movie before I would view the 2012 version, however in the end I had to do it the other way around. Didn’t make much of a difference eventually, since the 2012 version stays mostly true to the original storyline. The main difference is that the new movie is filmed from the killer’s point of view, so you see everything out of the Maniac’s eyes. You mainly get to see the Maniac himself when he looks in the mirror, is captured on photo etc.

While 1980s Frank is a big, sleazy-looking type played by Joe Spinell, 2012 Frank is very unthreatening looking and extremely shy in the form of Elijah Wood. I’m sure I’m not the only one that thought of Frodo Baggins when hearing Elijah Wood was playing the main character… but he played a great Maniac. What definitely did not draw me to this movie was seeing Elijah Wood’s name popping up, but he really did deliver this wonderful sense of awkwardness in how the Maniac interacts with women.

Both Maniacs are very emotionally disturbed, their view of women and love completely warped through their dysfunctional relationship with their mother. We see more about this relationship in the 2012 movie through flashbacks, and only hear about this indirectly in the 1980s. The Maniac’s love of collecting the scalps of his victims is obvious in both versions, and both movies surely make a point of showing this as graphically as possible. The amount of blood and gore in the two versions is fantastic (= a lot), and there are enough moments in both movies that will make you wince.

The victim situations are also fairly similar in both movies, although there are some tweaks in the 2012 version. For example, 2012 Frank apparently also uses online chatrooms to find his victims. Obviously 1980 Frank didn’t have this same luxury, and just goes out on the streets (which 2012 Frank does too, he just gets to enjoy more options in this digital age).

In both movies, the Maniacs meet photographer Anna, and this turns into an obsession. 1980s Maniac recognises his mother in this young lady, while 2012 Maniac mistakenly thinks he’s got a chance to be with Anna, only to find out she already has a boyfriend. Apart from these minor details and a few other differences, the overall development of the story is fairly similar. I guess it’s not a surprise that 2012 Anna gets the opportunity to have a bit more of a character than 1980s Anna, who gets the predictive role of ‘beautiful woman that reminds the Maniac of his mother’.

The 2012 version uses a 1980s inspired music score, which works nicely to recreate the typical 80s slasher atmosphere from the original movie. Talking about the music, a nice touch during a scene in the 2012 movie is the inclusion of ‘Goodbye horses’ by Q Lazarus, a.k.a. the Buffalo Bill song from The silence of the lambs. Other people might know it through the spoof done in Family Guy where Chris Griffin does this same dance. Needless to say this caused a few giggles in the audience, although it’s unknown which of the two references they were thinking of, most probably both (I hope!).

 

So the 2012 version of Maniac stays mainly true to its original, and unlike most remakes, it is actually really good. With some updates to make it more in line with the current times, it does not take away from the original story.

Old or New Maniac?: hmmmm….. the 1980s version did feel somewhat dated, although the sleaziness of 1980 Maniac did add a greater sense of grittiness to the movie which made it a bit more uncomfortable viewing than the remake. And that is exactly one of the things what makes a horror movie for me. However, seeing everything from the killer’s point of view in the remake really does add a nice effect to the movie, accentuating the Maniacs stalking behaviour, but also giving the audience a look into the head of this very disturbed man. Also, I prefer the choice of a more unassuming character to be a Maniac (it’s the quiet ones you always have to watch out for, isn’t it?). I’d have to give a slightly higher preference to the remake, although it is a very close call.

 

Watch this if: you enjoy the typical 80s slashers such as Friday the 13th, or you’re sceptical about whether Elijah Wood can actually play a maniac. There will always be the ‘original vs remake’ debate, but I personally think it’s worth watching if you liked the original.

Don’t watch this if: you’re the squeamish kinda type (well, that’s pretty obvious considering the main character collects scalps), or have strong feminist views: it’s still a remake of a typical slasher, so lots of helpless females that don’t have much chance to defend themselves before being brutally slaughtered.

You can follow Miss FooFantastic or drop her a line on twitter!

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TV New Season Preview: The Most Anticipated Fall Premieres

Fall is by far my favorite season. The leaves are starting to change around my house, the weather is getting more pleasant, and one more thing. The return of all my favorite sitcoms! It has been a long summer of reruns, Olympics (no complaints here), and other time fillers that are just teases until the new fall shows. So with all of the anticipation, what shows are going to be worth the wait? Are there any new shows that we should be watching? As we all now, as certain shows go on in their series they start to fade, but the shows here are must watch this fall.

Community

Now I want to start of the list with this gem, and also state that there is an NBC bias here. I believe they offer the best shows, and are high above other channel lineups. With all that aside, Community tops the list. This quirky series has had a rough start, and with all the mix ups within the last year or so (the firing of creator Dan Harmon) this show proves to be a hit episode after episode. For TV and movie nerds like me, the focus on the shows nerd culture, abstract meta episodes, and strong homages to other genres (think Fistful of Paintballs) have us coming back every week. This year they will be adding James Brolin as Jeff Winger’s dad to the show. Every Community fan knows Jeff’s daddy issues, so this season should prove to have some poignant, yet still hilarious moments.

The Office

This makes this list for many reasons, but most of which is to say farewell to this Thursday night staple. The U.S.’s version of The Office has had a long 8 year run, that has been full of highs and lows, taking us through the entire story of this Scranton’s office of misfits. With Steve Carell’s (Michael Scott) departure a couple seasons ago made many think that the show was done for. The following seasons were actually quite good, but I feel they have called a good time to bring the series to a close. There still a promise of great episodes, though some of the hilarious might change to heart felt, as closing series often due. Also, with Mindy Kaling (Kelly Kapoor) starting her new Fox series, it will be interesting to see what role she plays, which is also a great hilarious complement to the show. So make sure you watch this series finale, as it promises to be a good one.

The New Normal

From a show ending its run, to another starting theirs. The New Normal appears to be another quirky show dealing with the issues of a surrogate mother helping out a gay couple have children. The series looks to be an affirmative LGBT comedy, much in the vein of Modern Family (to be discussed) yet seems to be even more quirky. After some dispute over the use of the term normal in an LGBT show, it looks to have a good first year in its future. Besides, who doesn’t like a little controversy? The show will feature a mother without a filter for the offensive statements she makes (Lucille Bluth comes to mind), a young female lead who is seemingly the level headed one, and the two men looking for a child. All of these elements combined make the series look promising, and I think should be given a solid try.

Modern Family

While we’re on the subject, let’s look at Modern Family. Last season closed with Cam and Mitchell not being able to have a second child, Gloria expecting a child, and all the other craziness that is attached with this shows popularity. This show promises laughs with every single episode, and looks to still be going strong. What is great about this show, going into its new season, is that it still delivers. A lot of times you see a show start to fade at this point in its run, but week after week, Modern Family shows us a glimpse into the new view of suburbia, and its off beat characters (truly there is no “normal” lead) keeps us all coming back for more. This may be my top recommendation of the upcoming season.

Parks and Recreation

So yes, one more NBC hit to round off the list. Last seasons Parks and Recreation ended with Leslie Knope winning the local election, and her boyfriend Ben Wyatt getting an offer to move to DC for a job on Capitol Hill. The upcoming series will help bring all of those revelations to a close, but furthermore, having Leslie Knope in a higher office with more responsibilities is likely to wreak even more hilarious havoc on the town of Pawnee, Indiana. With all of the laughs that comes out of the Pawnee Parks and Recreation office, this new year proves to be full of great plot twists and Ron Swanson manliness.

So here is the list of shows you must watch this upcoming year. They are all solid comedies, and all sure to keep you entertained. All of these shows have the right formula, and the formula hasn’t yet lost its potency. For shows you can avoid, I strongly recommend avoiding The Middle. This show has been done before, and though it’s been around for a few seasons, there is nothing special or outstanding about that show. But as you’re all getting ready for the Fall season, make sure your DVRs are set for these sitcoms.

This is a guest blog from Jordan Mendys, he’s a TV and Film fanatic, and a blogger for Aspire Direct. He lives in NC with his wife, and is greatly looking forward to the new season of his favorite shows.

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Don 2 Upodcast FlashBack

We recorded this podcast just a day after Don 2 came out in a casual late night chat with our good friend Danny Bowes, from MoviesByBowes and also IndieWire (he’s been firing from both barrels so definitely check out his work).

Unfortunately I’m only now getting to posting it since there were some audio issues that i could only solve now as I didn’t want to give you guys a bad experience listening to Upodcast, but with Priyanka Chopra coming at us with a critically acclaimed performance in Barfi and her career as a popstar starting, as well as just not being to wait long enough to talk Shahrukh until Jab Tak Hai Jaan comes out in November, it was the right time to dig up and dust of our great chat about Don 2 again.

The discussion is still very geeky and very indepth as usually is the case with Upodcast. Bringing you a twist on Bollywood reviews that no one else does.

We talk the Superstar that ShahRukh is, what kind of movies he wants to make and how he wants to project himself, and we even go into the age old Salman vs Shahrukh debate ( in a respectful manner)

We covered Don’s release quite intensly and even did an interview with director Farhan Akhtar in our inimitable style that you can check out here! ( funny story, Shahrukh actually stepped into the room when we were talking to Farhan on the phone so we were only 1 degree away SRK, WOOHOO)

Do check out the episode below or subscribe to us in iTunes:

 

@asimburney

 

 

 

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Jab Tak Hai Jaan Trailer and an Analysis of the 2 Shahrukh’s

The trailer for the most looked forward to movie for the rest of the year is finally out after so much teasing and marketing strategizing. And when you finally watch it, you wonder, why didn’t they just show us the trailer straight away without all the ridiculous “We don’t have a title yet” strategy as the trailer really does stand on it’s own.

 

Lush visuals of Ladhak, the famous SRK arm stretch in London, a bubbly Anushka Sharma in booty shorts, Katrina Kaif playing the lover lost who you danced with in the rain in a bikini top laced over Shahrukh’s voice over of the poem written by producer Aditya Chopra that was released a couple of weeks ago with the poster, accompanied by the guitar of an AR Rahman soundtrack.

First some quick thoughts before I get into a bigger talking point:

  • I think my eyeballs might pop out from all the beautiful images on screen and I don’t just mean the lovely ladies but the locations (London hasn’t shot so beautifully in ages and hey I live here), the Royal Enfield and Harley Davidson bikes, even SRK scruffy beard. (Not such a fan of the cut off gloves)
  • Doesn’t that Free coffee sign behind Katrina Kaif ruin a bit of the visual? Even more so as the wafting of her hair feels like someone just opened the door to the local Starbucks.
  • The trailer is pretty spoilerific: You can figure out much of the storyline with this trailer alone and especially the yearning way the Katrina shots are taken.
  • I don’t want to see SRK wear a fedora. Fedora’s are for douches, period.
  • I’m calling it now; this will be my favorite soundtrack of the year. No one does what AR Rahman can do musically, I will fight people if they claim differently
  • Still not too sure about the poem itself, but this might be because of the horrible translations SRK was tweeting which made me unfollow him.
  • Cool Guys don’t look at explosions indeed

 

I think I’ve cracked the ShahRukh Khan mystery to a certain degree after watching this trailer.

Like most of us he has 2 distinct sides to his personality. The first is the ambitious orphan underdog/outsider that came to Mumbai to chase the love of his live (Lets’ call him Scrapper ShahRukh) and the other is the guy that became the biggest superstar in the Indian Film Industry after a certain Big B (AKA Superstar SRK).

Scrapper ShahRukh takes chances, give us an abundance of emotions, can romance a tree and make us believe that his mom did actually say that there are 2 paths in life, one good and one bad, the bad one is easy, the good one is hard but the only right one. (Darr, Baazigar, Swades, Chak De India)

Superstar SRK on the other hand has grand ambitions as a producer is cockier, loves his action mixed with his own brand of smarmy charm and wants to create the biggest film and effects studio in India. (He also wears Fedora’s and makes gay security guards think he’s wearing a Prince Albert)

 

In the past few years Scrapper SRK didn’t want to get bogged down in Raj/Rahul roles and after loosing some of his long-term collaborators, his inherent competitive streak mutated to Hulk like proportions making him implode into Superstar SRK what seemed like a permanent transformations.

Even working with Karan Johar and to a certain degree Aditya Chopra, we end up getting disjointed movies that never find a compromise with that internal tug of war. (Rab Ne Banadi Jodi almost being a play by play of this theory)

 

When Superstar SRK takes over a project (as the superstars doesn’t star in movies but projects), he will include in the package a blitzkrieg media campaign; an oversaturation of “I am the best and the rest is shit” quotes, and promote the movie in every village, country, city and social media platform until he wears himself out physically and emotionally.

I strongly believe most people don’t like this Shahrukh. (not including fanboys and girls as they are crazy loons)

 

Only the relationship people that knew him from way back when (Farah Khan, Ashutosh Gowariker, Aziz Mirza, Juhi Chawla and Yash Chopra) can tap into Scrapper Shahrukh again and when he let’s go of the reins, cinematic magic happens.

 

All that to say, I’m really happy we seem to be getting scrapper Shahrukh as I’ve really missed him.

 

Movie is in UK theaters 13th of November.

 

Color us EXCITED.

@asimburney

 

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007 James Bond Retrospective Part 1- “The Connery’s” Upodcast

This Episode of Upodcast is Part 1 of a 4 part retrospective, With Skyfall’s imminent release in the Golden-eyenniversary year of the world’s most famous drinker, smoker, gambler, womanizer and spy, Upodcast takes the chance to head down memory lane.

We’ll take a look at the many incarnations, covering the good, the great & the short-lived.  This episode kicks things off with the original and some say, best Bond, Sean Connery.  Others will follow where we’ll take an in depth look at the rest.

Each episode we will be joined by some amazing guests and we are very fortunate that to kick proceedings off this week one of the Editor’s of the path breaking citizen’s news journal Blottr and Bond connoisseur, Ravin Sampat, has joined us. You can follow him on twitter or his tumblr blog.
With our sights set, we take aim at the Connery era starting from 1962’s Dr No all the way to 1983’s the non- Eon produced, Never Say Never Again,  much to Martin and Ravin’s disgust.

We also talk about Sean’s accent, his physique and his wig…but not his tattoo.  So, we hope you enjoy our mission into the world of Ian Fleming’s indefatigable secret agent.  Fasten the seatbelts on your Aston Martin DB5 as we rewind to 1962.

You can listen/download to the episode below or subscribe in iTunes and never miss an Upodcast ever again!

 

 

 

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Jiro Dreams of Sushi Upodcast review

This week Upodcast is on a quest for perfection. Joined by our guests Paresh from the phenomenal music podcast “The CurrySmugglers” and the always insight and thought-provoking Anisha Jhaveri, writer for Urban Asia, we slice through the Japanese documentary by David Gelb, Jiro Dreams Of Sushi.

We follow the life of Jiro Ono, an 85 year-old sushi master and owner of Michelin 3-Star restaurant Sukiyabashi Jiro, on his continuing quest to perfect the art of sushi.

To give you an idea of what we are talking about in the show, here is a clip of what happened when renowned food author Anthony Bourdain visited Jiro in his Tokyo restaurant.

 

 

You can follow more of Paresh’s work on the Currysmugglers here, a podcast we can wholeheartedly recommend you listen to straight after ours.

Anisha you can follow on twitter or some of her writings on her blog as well as UrbanAsia

As usual you can listen, download to our show below and if you have a minute, we would love if you could write us a review or rating on iTunes. (It only takes a minute, just click here)

@asimburney

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GBH Trailer Exclusive

Riots, Corrupt Coppers, Hooligans, we seem to have a gritty British flick on our hands people. From the star and producer of The Rise And Fall Of A White Collar Hooligan and accompanied by some pretty strong recommendations from online critics comes GBH.

Here is the trailer and an summary of the plot from the press release:

Producer and directed bySimon Phillips (The Rise And Fall Of A White Collar Hooligan), GBH takes as its core premise the age-old battle between good and evil, and sets the modern, urban story on the harsh streets of West London, as the capital is battered and burned during the infamous London riots. Boasting a talented veteran and newcomer British cast, including Nick Nevern (The Sweeney, The Rise And Fall Of A White Collar Hooligan, Terry) Kellie Shirley (EastEnders) Jenna Harrison (Against The Dark, Telling Lies) Roland Manookian (The Rise & Fall of a White Collar Hooligan, RocknRolla, The Business) Con O’Neil (Frank, Telstar: The Joe Meek Story) Steven Berkoff (The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, A Clockwork Orange) and Peter Barrett (The Rise And Fall Of A White Collar Hooligan, Jack Falls), the story centres around lead character Damien performed by Nick Nevern, who is a London ‘copper’ with a criminal past he’s trying to forget.

Before signing up to the police force he ran with a vicious football gang with a penchant for violence and intimidation. Now that Damien is on the other side of the law, he faces a tough decision – side with his old crew or protect London as it burns and rioters run amok?  Things are complicated further when he becomes romantically involved with fellow police officer Louise (Kellie Shirley, Eastenders), and is helpless to protect her when she is viciously beaten and raped by one of his former gang members. Damien decides to take matters into his own hands, with brutal and devastating consequences.
Billed as the British thriller film of the year, GBH packs a punch like no other and depicts the gritty realities of inner-city deprivation and social disillusionment, as a city is torn-apart and one man desperately fights for justice.

GBH is out on in cinemas on 28th September 2012. GBH releases on DVD from 1st October.

@asimburney

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Taalaash Trailer Finally Surfaces

The long awaited trailer for Talaash has finally arrived after the release date got bumped from June 1st to November 30th and quite a few rumors about Amir Khan’s alleged disappointment with the direction Reema Kagti took or not wanting to loose his position at the Box Office after both other Khans delivered quite a few massive hits.

Frankly, I think both reports are B.S. as Amir has always walked his own walk.

 

When other actors are growing moustaches and donning police uniforms to cater to mass audiences, Amir chooses to work on what looks like a very cerebral thriller, a genre doesn’t draw desi audiences. Although No One Killed Jessica and Kahaani, prove that the timing might be perfect, and even I am getting tired of massy Southie remakes lately (and we have a few yet to arrive)

 

Dealing with a mysterious murder of a film star, Armaan Kapoor, but quickly turning into a story of obsession, guilt and infidelity. Amir Khan is accompanied by an amazing cast of Kareena Kapoor, Rani Mukherjee and Nawazzuddin Siddiqui (who I wonder if is getting more prominence in the trailer after Kahaani and Gangs Of WasseyPur)

 

I’m really looking forward to Taalaash, not only because it’s an Amir Khan flick, which is pretty much the gold standard in Hindi Movies, but also because I loved Reema Kagti’s debut HoneyMoon Travels, although I discovered it very late on a random tv zapping session. Khan is usually enjoyable in tough guy roles especially when he did Baazi and Sarfarosh years ago, although he doesn’t have the physicality anymore to convincingly play a cop, the moustache surely makes up for quite a bit.

It’s always fun to see Rani Mukherjee on screen who I never seem to get enough of and together with her Aiyya releasing soon, we’re in for some great releases from her and seeing her different shades.

The only wild card is really Kareena Kapoor, although she is fabulous as in her Heroine trailer, she just doesn’t seem to be part of the same movie we are watching, maybe it’s her diva persona that has gotten too big but it feels like very long ago since she actually had to challenge herself cinematically.

 

In any case Talaash is a movie to look forward to, hitting theaters on November 30th.

 

@asimburney

 

Joker Review Upodcast

Directed by enfant terrible of Hindi Film cinema Shirish Kunder, starring Akshay Kumar, Sonakshi Sinha, Shreyas Talpade and Alex O’Nell, follows up his 2006 gem Jaan E Mann with a Sci-fi village hoax movie Joker.

Unfortunately already one of the lowest openers of the Indian Box Office of 2012 and pretty much a disappointment all round for those looking forward to what this witty director with a keen visual sense would come up with after a gap of 6 years.

 

Our guest GetFilmy joins us to discuss the debacle leading up to the release, what went wrong and we speculate on what the next steps could be for Shirish Kunder as a film maker.

We try to talk as positively about the movie as we usually do on the show and theorize what went on behind the scenes.

  • Was it bad marketing?
  • The effects of slapgate?
  • Why did Akshay not promote the movie?
  • Is it a completely bad movie?

We finish up the show with the forthcoming releases of the year and what else we can look forward to.

Apologies for our listeners that joined us on Ustream ,that was an experiment that didn’t go well…Maybe next time.

You can find more of GetFilmy’s writing on her excellent blog of follow her on twitter.

You can download/listen to the show below and let us know what you think about in the comment section below.

 

@asimburney

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VEENA MALIK RELEASES HER FIRST LOOK FOR HER SINGLE DRAMA QUEEN

The US has Honey Boo Boo and before that Jersey Shore, India has Rakhi Sawant and Pakistan has Veena Malik. Some enjoy her antics ironically, but we can’t disregard the fact that she must have some genuine fans out there? Right?…

In any case, not content with everything else she is doing. Veena is now launching her music career too.

Here is an excerpt from the Press Release and teaser from her forthcoming video.

 

Here is the press release:

Known for her controversies, bold personality and daring stunts Bollywood actress Veena Malik is all set to launch her singing career with her debut single ‘Drama Queen’. As fitting as the title may seem this is just the beginning of her string of hits before she releases her album beginning of 2013. The album will host different producers from across the world giving each song a different vibe, including a collaboration with British Asian music producer Bups Saggu. The album is an exciting new venture for Veena aside from her film and TV career ” I’m so excited to release Drama Queen to the world, everyone is always tagging me like this so I thought why not let’s make a song on it, the song is fun and cheeky at the same time I hope everyone love’s all the work we’ve put in to it”  Said Veena Malik

Her music career will be launching in India and she will then head to the UK and USA for shows and appearances at the end of the year. Veena Malik is getting geared up to show the whole world the ‘Drama Queen’ experience . Nisha Sahdev from Sahdev Media, Veena Malik’s International Manager is looking forward to the launch  ” Drama Queen is a very catchy song, it’s surely going to be loved across the spectrum, the whole project is bold, fun and stylish which reflect Veena’s personality. We are putting together an album which will range different music composers to give a global feel and appeal to all her fans. Post the album we will be taking Veena on tour across UK, USA, UAE and Canada on the Drama Queen tour which will be announced January 2013″

Drama Queen as the title prompts is a fun, catchy song produced by ShreeD and Canadian producer IshQ. Written by Siddharth Bannerjree the song brings in all the perspectives of Veena Malik in one song.

Look out for the video to hit the screens near you! For now.. check out the Video Teaser.

Drama Queen out October 1st 2012.

@asimburney

 

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Q&A with Hollywood Actor, Faran Tahir for DALLAS (New Series)

Faran Tahir may not be considered a household name yet but he has a face familiar to millions around the world. The talented actor has appeared in a number of big Hollywood films and has guest starred in the many American household television shows like Warehouse 13, Blue Bloods, NCIS: Los Angeles, Supernatural, Charmed and Lost, to name a few. Faran will now be seen guest starring in the resurrected drama series, Dallas, where he plays the character, ‘Smiling Frank’ who is Cliff Barnes, driver and right-hand man.

“Dallas was a phenomenon in its time. I didn’t get to watch it regularly but I definitely knew who was who on it. The resurrected Dallas has already proved to be a hit in the US and I hope it has the same impact with the British audiences” said Faran.

Faran made his first debut in 1994 as Nathoo in Disney’s live action version of The Jungle Book. He has since gone onto star opposite Hollywoods A-list, Tom Hanks in Charlie Wilson’s War, as the evil sadistic Raza in Iron Man opposite Robert Downey Jr and the heroic Captain Robau in J.J Abram’s reboot of Star Trek in a brief but momentous role.

Next year Faran will be seen starring in ELYSIUM, a sci-fi thriller with Matt Damon and Jodie Foster directed by Neill Blomkampthe director of DISTRICT 9. THE TOMB, a prison break action movie with Sylvester Stallone and Arnold Schwarzenegger.JINN, a supernatural thriller and TORN, a drama about two families dealing with the untimely death of their teenage sons in a shopping mall explosion.

The new 10-part series of Dallas will be shown in the UK on Channel 5 starting 5th September at 9pm.

Here is a Q&A he did with some press people:

Did you ever watch the original series of Dallas?
Dallas was a phenomenon in its time. I didn’t get to watch it regularly but I definitely knew who was who on it. The resurrected Dallas has already proved to be a hit in the US and I hope it has the same impact with the British audiences.

What was the first day on the set of Dallas like?
On the first day we were all in the same boat. We were resurrecting an old classic with the old cast alongside a new generation of Barnes and Ewings. Everyone was nervous yet focused.

Were you given any advice by the original cast?
No. They were all praying that we wouldn’t screw it up!

You play the character ‘Smiling’ Frank Ashkani, who is he?
Frank is a mysterious man. Definitely not someone you want to mess or cross paths with. His real name is Raheed Durani and is Cliff’s right hand/driver and designated disposer of dead bodies. Sometimes referred to as ‘Smiling Frank’ but he doesn’t actually smile.

How does it feel working for Cliff Barnes?
It’s great working for Mr Barnes. All in days work.

Since starring in Dallas, have you felt the urge to shoot JR?
For those that have watched the old series will recall JR as a schemer with cut throat tactics. So, of course! Could you imagine the audience being left with another ‘Who shot JR?’ cliff-hanger.

So when did you first fall in love with acting?
My love affair with acting started when I was a little kid. I would often secretly stand in front of the mirror and act out scenes.

You have done film, television and theatre. What has given you the greatest satisfaction?
I get equal satisfaction from all three. There are stories that need the intimacy of live theatre to have the emotional impact. Then there are other stories that require the expansive canvas of the film screen and the sensitive eye of the camera to give the audience a window into characters and story. And sometimes, the freedom television affords to create a story and character over many hours can be priceless. I always say that a painter can paint in oil or water-colour or do a pencil sketch. It all depends on what story he or she is trying to tell. It is the same idea for me. It just needs to be interesting and challenging.

How did you feel when you landed a role in Star Trek?
I felt like a 10-year old boy. I have always liked Star Trek. I grew up on Star Trek. It was awesome. I have always been big fan of the original series with William Shatner and the Next Generation and respect the philosophy and its message of hope it portrays.

What was the whole experience of working in the film like?
You start off with complete awe but very quickly realize that you have a job to do and you better not screw it up. It was challenging and I wanted to show competence dignity and strength in a short amount of time.

Did you ever in your wildest dreams think you would become Captain of a Federation Starship?
A kid can dream, right? Sometimes even your wildest dreams can come true and the first time I walked on the set and the set of the ship I was like, “wow, I’m captain of a federation ship.”

How did the role of Raza in Iron Man come about?
It wasn’t easy! It involved a lot of readings with the casting director, the director and Robert Downey Jr. It also involved meetings with all the producers, a process which took almost three weeks.

What was your favourite scene in Iron Man?
I would most probably say, when I first encounter Tony Stark in the cave. I play an evil sadistic character of Raza, where it involves me or should I say Raza, putting a piece of burning coal in someone’s mouth, that’s fun right!

How did it feel getting beaten up by Iron Man?
Legendary. Growing up reading Marvel comics, never in my life did I imagine, that one day I would actually be getting beaten by Iron Man on the big screen.

Is it now easier for Asian actors in Hollywood or do you still get offered stereotypical roles?
There will always be stereotypical roles but I think that things are slowly changing. Hollywood is a tough place and not for everyone. Egos can be fragile and the business is tough. People with glass chins won’t survive. You need to be able to take a few punches and still be able to get back up.

What advice would you give young Asian actors?
Never give up on your dreams and work hard to achieve them. Complacency is death. When you find failure, be brave and when you find success show humility.

What else can we look forward to seeing you in?
I have some interesting stuff coming out in the next year. ELYSIUM, a sci-fi thriller with Matt Damon and Jodie Foster directed by the director of DISTRICT 9. JINN, a supernatural thriller and TORN, a drama about two families dealing with the untimely death of their teenage sons in a shopping mall explosion. THE TOMB, a prison break action movie with Sylvester Stallone and Arnold Schwarzenegger.

@asimburney

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