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Archive for the ‘Movie Critiques’ Category

The Demon and the Saint (ref. X-Men)

Recently I went for this movie, X-Men-First Class. It was a wonderful movie and I had a superb time. There were two main characters in the movie, Dr. X and Magneto, played by James McAvoy and Michael Fassbender respectively and in one of the dramatic scenes, McAvoy encourages Fassbender to use his special powers and move a gigantic metallic structure. It was then that McAvoy tells Fassbender that, “Focus lies somewhere between rage and serenity”. At that point of time, I completely agreed with what was being said in the movie and that kind of reminded me of the epic saying “With great powers, come great responsibilities”  from Spiderman.

Nevertheless, after giving it an astute thought, I now believe that focus does not lie somewhere between rage and serenity but it lies with you when you have both rage and serenity at the same time. Rage and serenity are like a demon and a saint who live inside you. Its essential that you become the master of both for if you let either one of them take control of you, you would be likely to find yourself in a very difficult set of circumstances.

The logic that I am offering is simple. If you have rage but lack serenity, you would be likely to go berserk and mad and on the other hand if you have serenity alone, you would surely be complacent in life and end up being an underachiever.

Give it a thought and if you agree with what I’m saying, trying enslaving both the demon and the saint. If you have rage and serenity at the same time i.e., you are determined, ambitious, aggressive and enterprising (because of rage) and calm, composed, patient and willing to endure (because of serenity), at the same time, you would be unstoppable.

These words of mine also remind me of a quote my favourite ‘Guru’ (I’m not going to name him here) once told me. He said while saying a lot of other things, “………revenge is the dish which tastes the best when it is served cold…..” I guess there is some connection with what he said and what I learned from the movie.

So control your rage but don’t do away with it.

Good night.


Where Gowarikar Failed in ‘Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey’?

Ashutosh Gowarikar, a well known movie director and producer recently came up with  ‘Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey’ (hereinafter KHJJS). The movie had almost everything, a decent lead actor who has inherited stardom and mass appeal, a beautiful lead actress who’s one of the best we have today, a genre which is not likely to fail or at least, miserably fail and last and most significantly,  Gowarikar himself who has come up with two acclaimed period movies like ‘Lagaan’ and ‘Jodhaa Akbar’  besides, another critically acclaimed movie, ‘Swades’.

KHJJS was one of the most highly awaited movies of the year (at least for me, it was) not only because it was supposed to deal with the life and exploits of Surjya Sen(of whom I have heard from my grandparents on numerous occasions while growing up), an almost forgotten hero and martyr who gave his life for the freedom struggle of India,  but also because it was a period movie by Gowarikar, my favorite (not that I have a lot of choice in Bollywood) in this genre.

The movie offers a promising start and gives every character an adequate space initially. The acting performances throughout the movie are decent, if not very good with Bachchan surpassing expectations again and Vishakha Singh being a new delight. The drama is adequate. The movie also offers enough thrill to make the audience to watch the entire movie. The best things about the movie are the costumes and the cinematography. Gowarikar has successfully been able to give the ‘pre-independence East Bengali’ touch to the movie through locations in Goa. If you want to appreciate the cinematographic aspects of a movie, then this might be the best movie of 2010 for you.

Nonetheless, in spite  of every good thing about the movie, somethings seem to be totally amiss. Firstly, the movie fails to arouse nationalistic feelings, maybe because of too many characters and none being given enough space to be idolized. Secondly, the music is not very good on the ears with ‘Ye Des Hai Mera’ being the only song one can hear a coupe of times. Thirdly, for the type of story telling the movie intended, it seems to be very long. Finally, the movie was probably not advertised properly and missed the regular publicity which other movies get through reality shows and daily soaps besides other mediums. Another important factor is that there are probably, too many Bengali dialogues which non-Bengalis  fail to decipher and Bengalis fail to appreciate because of the accent.

I do not want to discourage anybody who wants to go ahead and watch KHJJS ( I was disappointed only because I expect a lot out of Gowarikar everytime he makes a movie). It definitely deserves one watch because of  the movie it is and because of Surjya Sen and his comrades who deserve to be remembered. I won’t be surprised if some of you  have forgotten that small paragraph in your history book about Sen and the Chittagong uprising. Trust me, theres more to it than just that paragraph.