Edge of Tomorrow- Watch, Go Crazy, Repeat!!!!

Tom Cruise has always been a special actor. He is one of the few remaining stars who are above the performance of a film. So what happens when a star like Cruise gets a chance to sink his teeth into a terrific script? He ensures his act and the film in totality leave you zonked at the end of it all. Yes, Edge of Tomorrow is a terrific summer blockbuster which has everything going for it. The right story, the right cast, the right time and Tom Cruise.

Edge_of_Tomorrow_PosterThe story is about an alien invasion and how Cruise is thrown into the battlefield and forced to fight them. As he dies each day and wakes up again to fight another day, he realizes his aim is not to fight, but to win the war. Along with the terrific Emily Blunt, Tom Cruise goes about saving what is left of the world. What really intrigued me was the fact that in spite of a story where the novelty factor goes missing after a while, as Cruise lives the same day again and again, the director never lets the film go the monotonous route. He introduces us to a different aspect every time the day starts and that keeps us glued to the screen. The VFX has also been used intelligently and goes well with the narrative. Bill Paxton who plays a supporting role shines in his part and lends the film gravitas. What also left me impressed was the fact that Cruise chooses to not play his usual star out to save the world role and in fact lets Emily Blunt chew up more screen time and in the bargain gives a nuanced performance which I had stopped expecting from Cruise.
If Sci-fi is what gets you excited, this is a must watch film. You wont be able to take your eyes off the screen. Sheer magnetism this!!!!



Krrish 3: Even 3 Hrithiks can’t save this film from being a colossal bore…

I really don’t expect much from Indian superhero films. After the catastrophic Ra.One, my  ONLY expectation from any film of this genre is that they offer some bang for my buck moments to take home. Unfortunately, Krrish 3 fails to match up to my meager expectations. I had liked Krrish, because almost 7 years back, it was a spectacle which hadn’t been seen on Indian screen before. Plus it had Hrithik in an all new avatar. Alas, Rakesh Roshan manages to undo all that good which he had done with Krish and serves us a regressive film. The signs were there already. An abysmal soundtrack was like a warning that you should walk in with minimal expectations. And that is the only reason this film will not crash at the box office like Ra.One , because frankly the expectations from Krrish 3 are much lower.

My biggest complain from the film is that it is a boring watch and is highly unoriginal. In fact we don’t even have to look westwards, a lot of scenes are exactly similar to Ra.One. Rakesh Roshan tried his best to pick and choose from all superhero films and create a bhelpuri of a script, but he fails even on that count. The film tries to emotionally connect with you, and when that fails, it tries to win you over with its CGI wizardry. But all that sadly wasn’t enough to keep the two kids next to me awake, as 1.5 hours into the film, I could hear their snore louder than the background score. And we have the Roshans has going all out claiming this to be a Diwali gift for kids.

The plot if there ever was one is of Krish saving Mumbai from absolutely everyone and anyone. He repairs planes, bashes up bank robbers and saves a kid hanging from a wire, that is till he is given something serious to do. That is to save Mumbai from Kaal. Rohit Mehra as Hrithik’s father (Hrithik again) hams to the hilt and his accent starts geting on your nerves after a while. Krish when he is not sporting a mask, tries to retain a job,but keeps getting fired every time. Where does that leave the leading ladies, you ask? Priyanka Chopra is serviceable in a role which only required her to appear by Krishna’s side once in a while. Kangana Ranaut is actually good fun in a role where she switches sides. But it is Vivek Oberoi who winds hands down for being the biggest caricature of the year. If that torture of a film called Grand Masti wasn’t enough, Vivek as Kaal twists and contorts his face in every scene while asking the same bloody question 25 times to the same 5 people. Doesn’t he realize in the first instance that they don’t have the bloody answer to his predicament?

The songs whenever they appear are the ideal moment for you to take a loo break. YES, they are that bad. The direction is strictly okay, but from a man who has been directing films for the last 30 odd years, you expect better. The acting by Hrithik Roshan is uninspiring. But it is not his fault. Saddled with a one tone character, he really doesn’t get the scope to display much histrionics. In fact, the only other time I have sympathized with an actor so much before was when I had watched Mausam. Such brilliant actors made to do silly stuff and they agree to do them for the sake of their fathers. Kangana Ranaut is the best performer in the film and when that is the case, you know where the film is heading.

I believe all that a superhero can do, has been filled into this film and I believe by the end of its run, Krrish 3 would have squeezed the audience dry of a few hundred crores. But it was the last scene which leaves the scope for a climax, that left me scared. In fact very scared!!!!! Another Krrish it seems is just around the corner. Cutting a long review short, this Diwali spectacle turns out to be a damp squib!!!

Rating- 2/5


Compass Box Killer- A true homage to Bollywood…..A thrilling Page-turner!!!!!

Compass Box Killer is a fitting follow up to Pyiush Jha’s last smash hit…-Mumbaistan.. That book had 3 stories which had Mumbai as the protagonist. One of the stories called Injectionwala in that book, had a character called Inspector Virkar who plays the proverbial hero of the story. Piyush decided to give Virkar a book of his own and thus we have Compass Box Killer, Inspector Virkar’s quest to unravel a murder mystery.

This one is a cat and mouse chase thriller where the killer leaves behind a compass box and a the name of his next victim after every murder, challenging Virkar to nab him before he executes his next modus operandi. The story although sounds cliche on paper, but the way Piyush treats the characters and the plot, makes for a riveting read. I was left floored especially with the amount of detailing he goes into to establish the motive behind every character. He certainly takes giant steps and proves his first book Mumbaistan was definitely not a flash in the pan.

An entertaining and a racy thriller was what I was expecting and I can safely say I got double my money’s worth. If you are thirsting for a typical masala read where there is murder, double crossing, shady characters, theatrics and above all, maad thaad then Compass Box Killer will definitely quench your thirst.



JAcob HillS – An Insight into the Dark side of Armykind……

The defense has always fascinated me. My grandfather was a part of Indian AirForce and my mother is a teacher at Army School. These are the only links I have to the world of defense. So, my major source of information has always been the countless films and books we have on this subject. And every time I come across one, I lap it up in the hope of getting more insights to the world which has always fascinated us civilians.

The Indian Army website greets you with this quote- ” To be born free is an accident. To live free is a privilege. To die free is a responsibility”. Impressive I must say, quite impressive. The ones associated with the world of defense do wear their badge of honor with utmost pride. And why not, they are the ones to be thanked for having a country where corruption and not war is an issue to be worried about. Which brings me to a book which I stumbled upon. Titled Jacob Hills, this is a tale which uses Indian Army as a backdrop to narrate a riveting saga which is thrilling, funny and interesting at the same time.

The plot takes you to a bygone era ( 1980’s to be specific) and focuses on a group of army gentlemen, their wives and the world around them. The expanse is limited which I believe is intentional and it manages to suck the reader to that make believe world of Jacob Hills where all that you have heard about the Indian Army being a group of gentlemen out to protect the motherland will go out of the window.Lets face it, the Army men are humans and Indians after all and they have as much right to be corrupt and inhuman as any other civilian. The dark murky world of Jacob Hills is full of tales of corruption, deceit, bigamy, pedophilia and lots more which will make you do a quick rethink about the world around you.

The world created by the writer Ismita Tandon Dhankher is edgy, sinister and very disturbing. It connects you to incidents which you hear about in the news but haven’t really come face to face with. The story all of a sudden changes gears and develops into a thriller and that as a matter of fact takes the anticipation level a touch higher. And as the story ends, you sit back for a moment and piece the puzzle together. And in that moment, my admiration for the author grew further as she very easily could have gone wrong. After all writing a whodunit is not an easy task and takes exceptional skills.

But like no piece of art is perfect, similarly Jacob Hills has its share of flaws. The characters remain a bit underdeveloped, as the story tries to focus on too many characters. In fact doing away with some characters wouldn’t really have hurt the story much. The build up to the suspense and the ultimate revelation could have been handled in a better manner. Yes, as a reader you are surprised but that punch is missing which is such a vital ingredient of a murder mystery.

Then again, this is Ismita’s second book and with time, she will only attain greater heights. Her style of writing is quite rare and is very believable. She keeps it simple and that in turn helps the reader participate a lot more in the story than he would usually. The illustrations for every character have been done brilliantly and help you identify that much more with every character.

I guess here is an author who is all set to create a mark for herself in the world of fiction….For her next offering,,,, The world shall wait…with Bated breadth!!!!!