Shiva

LIFF Review Monsoon Shootout

 

 

Monsoon Shootout was the perfect opening film to the wonderful yearly non-Bollywood Indian film Festival LIFF. Not only was Amit Kumar’s 10 years in the making debut still riding on it’s praise from Cannes, it was a movie exclusive enough that wasn’t available to UK audiences but also had the cachet of a well known name attached to most of it’s marketing in critical darling Nawazuddin Siddiqui.

 

We follow Adi (Vijay Varma) who starts his day with his mother’s advice that life is basically Goldilock’s porridge, to be eaten just the right way. Armed with a Ganesha round his neck and the realization that his supervising officer (Neeraj Kabi) has watched Denzel Washington’s Training Day one to many times, he is assigned to chase down the Shiva, the Ax killer (Nawazuddin), who has been extorting money from builders for an underground Slum Lord who is preparing his entry for the world wrestling federation old timers division.

Adi and Shiva come face to face under on a rainy night which sets us up for the 3-way split narrative where we see what can happen if Adi eats his porridge too hot, too cold or just right.

 

It is clear to see that director Amit Kumar has poured in his personal vision in every frame of the movie, the movie is gritty, dark supported by some wonderful performances both by the leads Vijay Varma and Nawazuddin as well as the supporting cast of Neeraj Kabi, Tannishtha Chatterjee and the little dude that was playing her son. Monsoon Shootout clearly wants to distance itself from any conventional Bollywood film by its subject matter, casting choices and narrative flow.

 

Unfortunately this is not Tomas Twyker’s Run Lola Run, which had the visuals to support its structure forcing the movie to move at a relentless pace and never get boring.  Monsoon Shootout has none of those visual flourishes and keeps it dire and gritty vision until the end, whilst still managing to cut away from any impactful gore. From the 2nd narrative possibility things start to slow down and the aversion to Bollywood conventions seem a bit forced. Like most Hindi Independent films it remains in cinematic adolescents, rebelling against its Bollywood lineage but not grown up enough to play with global filmi big boys who have done this before and better.

 

Since Amit Kumar has been working on this story for a decade this are things he could have mended if he hadn’t been as close to the story as he was. I also think he had no idea that Nawazuddin would break out to become the start he is now. A savvier director could have padded up his scenes but this didn’t seem the case in Monsoon Shootout, so we miss out some of the fire that we know Siddiqui can bring to the screen as in Kahaani or Gangs Of Wasseypur.

 

But these are small issues with an overall positive cinematic experience and a great opener to one of the most unique cinematic festivals in London, which we hope to be covering in the next few days.

@asimburney

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Rowdy Rathore Podcast

To discuss Akshay Kumar‘s return to action movies with Rowdy Rathore by shattering box office collections with a weird spinny saw whilst twirling their moustaches Upodcast is joined by the always awesome FilmiGirl and Bollywood Gif creator extraordinaire Sujoy Sinha also known as @93eK on twitter or from his writings at OneKnightStand and Bollypop!

This was the first Upodcast to be streamed live on Ustream (bookmark this link to catch the next show!), follow our twitter feed or facebook page so you can join the next time we go live with our insanity!

As we mention in the intro, we have quite an amazing competition running for the month of June sponsored by Hi-Fi Tower so click here to check out the rules and how you can win Home Projector to transform your living rooms into a theater experience!

Let us know what you though of the show in the comment section below!

@asimburney

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Plot Spoilers for Rowdy Rathore: Bollywood’s Original Action Hero Akshay Kumar Gets ‘Rowdy’ In Bollywood’s Latest Action Drama

One movie that we have totally been looking forward to is Rowdy Rathore and since the release is just around the corner, there is quite a bit of promotion going on especially in India where the stars and director Prabu Deva are on a city wide tour. Together with the full Chinta Ta Ta Chita Chita – Rowdy Rathore Official Full Song Video, we received a spoilerific plot summary, read if you can’t wait to know the what the movie will be about!

*SPOILERS

Bollywood’s original hero Akshay Kumar makes his long-awaited return after seven years to the action movie arena with this summer’s big release Rowdy Rathore releasing on the 1st of June 2012.

Rowdy Rathore is a modern re-working of the Telugu film Vikramarkudu, and features an all-star Bollywood cast comprising of Akshay Kumar and Bollywood starlett Sonakshi Sinha who returns to screens after Dabangg. The film is directed by renowned Tamil choreographer and actor Prabhu Deva (Wanted, Shakti – The Power) and also features the considerable talents of producer Sanjay Leela Bhansali, famed for his directing credits on cutting-edge films Black, Devdas and Saawariya. The film marks Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s first foray into the action genre.

Akshay Kumar returns to dazzling form in this all-action blockbuster, as he expertly plays two very different and intriguing characters. The film is enhanced by lighthearted moments of comedy, thrilling action sequences and a little sprinkling of romance to set things off. Rowdy Rathore showcases Akshay Kumar’s acting talents and versatility as an actor, and guarantees an exciting summer film for the whole family.

In a gripping tale of mystery, deception and revenge, the thrilling story is told through the eyes of lead character Shiva (Akshay Kumar), who is a small-time thief addicted to acts of daredevilry. Shiva’s life is turned upside down when one day a young girl turns up and claims to be his daughter. Stunned by the revelation, he soon uncovers a dark and disturbing story behind her claim. It turns out that the girl is the daughter of IPS Police Officer Vikram Singh Rathore, who happens to be Shiva’s twin brother. When the two meet, and Vikram is murdered in front of Shiva, the latter must assume his identity and work undercover to bring his killers to justice.

Here is another look at the trailer that we can’t get enough of!

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