Archive for August, 2009

Its a strange situation in Goa. International Film Festival Of India is held in Goa, it get tourists from across the world. But Konkoni language doesnt seem to grow beyond the borders of Goa. But slowly, it seems to be changing. And here’s some good news.

Dil Bole Hadippa, Whats Your Raashee and Road, Movie are going to be screened at Toronto International Film Festival this year. The new addition to the list is Konkani film The Man Beyond the Bridge (Paltadacho Munis), produced by NFDC. The film is directed by Laxmikant Shetgaonkar, a filmmaker from Goa.

The film will be screened under the ‘Discovery’ section at this year’s TIFF which kicks off on 10th September. This section offers a window on contemporary international cinema. The movie will have a total of 5 screenings during the festival.

The script prior to its production also went under fine tuning in the Script Lab organized by NFDC in ‘Film Bazaar 2007’.

Synopsis : The Man Beyond the Bridge is a story about Vinayak, a forest guard, who lives a lonely life, with just the memories of his dead wife in a Government house in the dense forests of Goa-Karnataka border. His repeatedly rejected pleas for a transfer by his superiors in the Department of Forests have left him bitter. One night, he comes across a filthy, unkempt mentally challenged woman lying in the compound outside his house. He drives her away but she keeps returning. From his initial irritation with her filthy appearance and irate behavior, he slowly gets used to her daily visits looking for food and sleeping in the courtyard. With time, he begins to derive comfort from her presence.

Vinayak’s growing relationship with the woman initially, attracts some comment but evokes a strong protest in the village only when she gets pregnant. The villagers question Vinayak’s right over mentally challenged and helpless woman. They maintain that his relationship is morally incorrect and should be ended. However, for Vinayak, the woman is his companion and the mother of his child and there is no dilemma in his mind over this. Thus begins a conflict between a society that refuses to take responsibility of such a woman and one man’s endeavour to integrate her in his life. 

ChintujiRemember those days of IN & AS! When the opening credits of the film would roll with the lead actor’s name and it would come with the title of the film.

When I heard about the film Chintuji (yes, thats the title), I thought the same. Rishi Kapoor IN & AS Chintuji! And yeah, it stars Rishi Kapoor. Am sure there are not many actors who have the luck to have a film by their name or nickname and then get to star in it too!

We love nicknames, or as well call ghar ka naam or kaccha naam. Some of us even have more then one ghar ka naam! Bollywood is no different and the names sound all weird and funny. Bebo, Chi Chi, Lolo, Guddu, Duggu, Chinki, Bonny, Faffy! But then, whats the point of a nickname if it doesnt sound funny and if you dont want to hide it from others! Ghaar ka naam bus ghar ke liye! 

My all time favourite nicknames are Chenta and Penta. Chenta was a friend in school and his brother was called Penta. Poor souls, we used to harass them a lot. Though he tried his best and kept on denying that his name was Chenta. He said it was Chintoo and his brother was Pintoo. But who would listen ? And where is the fun in Chintoo-Pintoo ? The false one became a real name and Chenta-Penta had no choice but to accept it!

Nicknames dont have reason or logic. But it seems Chintuji’s nickname has a story behind it. When Rishi Kapoor was born, his brother Randhir Kapoor used to recite a riddle.

Chote se chintu miyaan, lambi si poonch,

jahan jaye chintoo miyaan, wahan jaye poonch! Bujho to jaano ?

Its a needle and thread. And because of this riddle, Rishi Kapoor was nicknamed Chintu. What a prick! Is that the reason why Rishi Kapoor can be so rude and can fire you for ringing him on his mobile – How can you call on my mobile ? Huh!

The film Chintuji is about Rishi Kapoor, an actor who loves Legs & Pegs and has political ambitions. Its directed by Ranjit Kapoor, writer of films like Jaane Bhi Do Yaaron (D), Kabhi Haan Kabhi Na (D), Bandit Queen (D), Mangal Pandey (D) and Halla Bol (D). ( D- Dialogues)

And here is the most interesting bit. If am not wrong, Ranjit Kapoor must be bollywood’s oldest debutant in recent times. We always joke about it, who will break the record! VBala, you listening ? The competition is getting tougher. First it was Pradeep Sarkar (Parineeta) at 52. Then Naseeruddin Shah’s directorial debut (Yun Hota To Kya Hota) at 56! And now its Ranjit Kapoor at 61!! Or may be as Dharam Paaji said, its not about age, its about mileage! 

Click the play button to check out the theatrical trailer of Chintuji. Produced by Bobby Bedi, it releases this friday.

Well, thats the rumour doing the rounds.Aamir-Khan

It seems Danny Boyle will present Anurag Kashyap’s next film titled Bombay Velvet (BV). Its a period flick set in the early 1940’s Mumbai. According to this report in Mid-day, Aamir Khan has already heard the narration of the film but still to give his nod to the project.

What we know is that Bombay Velvet is planned as a triology and will be produced by Studio18.

prateik-babbarThe other casting news is about Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s next titled My Friend Pinto. The film will be produced by Bhansali and will star Prateik Babbar. It will be directed by debutant Raghav Dar who has assissted Mani Ratnam and Abbas Tyrewala.

You can read the full report here. And since this report is by Subhash K Jha, who is known to be close to Bhansali, you can trust this newsbit.

Fame Big CinemasIts all about the BIG idea! I understand. And business is all about BIG money. I do understand. But when you cheat me to run your business, I really dont understand. Blame it on BIG!

Sunday. 11 pm show. Quickgun Murugun. Fame Big Cinemas , Andheri (west). Earlier it was Fame Adlabs before Big Cinemas ( ADAG – Anil Dhirubhai Ambani Group) took over Adlabs.

At around 9 pm, I logged in to their website to check ticket availability for the 11 pm show. Tickets priced at Rs 180 and Rs 220. For 180, only first two rows were available. Rest all sold out. For 220, lot of seats were available. I thought will easily manage two seats (me and my friend) for the Rs 220 category.

Reached the theatre by 10:50 pm. Not much crowd. Asked the guy at the counter for two tickets of Quickgun Murugun. To confirm it, I asked him the status of the Rs 180 category seats. He said the same – Only first two rows. Showed me the screen too. I asked for two silver category tickets (Rs 220). On the screen, he showed me its the last row, centre seats.

We entered the theatre and were waiting outside Screen – 4. Not much crowd. Wondered how is it almost housefull. I dont see much people around. Entered the theatre, moved to our seats. From the last row, its easy to get the full view of the theatre. Except few people in the first two rows, I didnt see anyone in the gold category seats ( Rs 180). And for the Rs 220 category seats (silver), people were still coming in.

For a moment I thought may be its some group or corporate booking. And so i waited. But these are BIG liars! Someone must be making money thinking about these out of box BIG ideas to make more money. So, what their website showed me was wrong, what the guy at the ticket counter told me was a lie and its a case of cheating. And its all planned. Its must be what they call STRATEGY! I and am sure, many like me, have been forced to buy the Rs 220 category tickets.

No business like weekend business! 40 rupees ? Yes, its not a big amount but I do value it and I HATE to be treated like this. Because its NOT right. And why would you dare to cheat me when am going to see the truth in just a few minutes! Some guts!

Am sure this cant be just for one show and one screening. If its working, they must be doing the same for other screens. Since it was late night show, by the time the movie got over, the box office counter was closed. Otherwise I would have informed the guy at the ticket counter. Atleast he should know that I know about it. Am sure he will pass the info to his boss. And next time am going to do it. And make much more noise about it. Document it all, record it and take pictures. 

Since I dont have enough money to put half page ads on the front page of the newspapers (what a gas!) and ask people to voice their concern about what is right and what is wrong,  have put my thoughts here. Do spread the word, check the facts and make sure you dont get cheated. De-FAME!


What Pratim has suggested in the comment, that might also be true. Only the first two rows’ tickets were priced at Rs 180. The ticket prices are different for almost all the shows and more so during weekends. Also it depends on movies too. Like recently, when Kaminey opened in Mumbai on monday, the multiplexes smartly charged the tickets at weekend prices. Because they knew that people are going to watch it anyway. Not sure if there are any guidelines about it. Though I remember that the website was showing it as housefull for the Rs 180 category tickets.  Have also seen other films in other rows for the same price. But then it doesnt gurantee anything. So, if thats the case then this post is invalid. If they can charge whatever they want, why would it they fake it ? This reason also makes sense. In this case, am wrong and my apologies. But if not, then it stays. Am going to be more careful next time and will check it properly.


Still havent managed to catch Shashank Ghosh’s madness called Quick Gun Murugun. A friend Vasan Bala saw it and recommends it strongly. Read on.

quickgun murugan2A man is supervising the MENU for the day being listed on the black board.

“Bullet Chicken……B..U…L…L…I….T”

The man writing on the board with a chalk auto-corrects.


The man who was dictating gets angry. Puts a gun to the other man’s head and growls at him, How dare he ask for a correction?

Even I agree with BULLIT CHICKEN. What’s an urban cowboy movie without an ode to the greatest URBAN COWBOY ever “Steve McQueen”

Shashanka Gosh and team have brought back that crazy brainwave from back in 1994 to it’s 2009 full blow AVTAAR (can’t escape Avtaar, it has become the last name in film-making, so I hear)

And this time around he means business and is bloody serious. There is no goofing around.

The moment we get into the Coconut Climbing Training School scene we know we are in for a serious treat. Not an half heartedly made or backed crazy idea. Such treatment to such films are so so so so rare in Indian Cinema.

Usually a great wacky idea is good enough for either the small screen (MTV, Channel V, Nick) or maybe a 30 second slot as a TVC not a full blown FEATURE. Shashanka Gosh and hopefully the success of this venture paves the way for many many more wacky minds. Take a Bow TEAM QGM.

Being a TamBram and that to born and brought up in Matunga there could not have been a more personal experience.

“You made my day, Machchan”

The plot is quit ideological and spiritual. The age old debate on FOOD, whether it has to be plants and herbs or the ones that move, crawl, jump or fly.

Murugun believes in eating grass, Rice Plate Reddy believes in the latter. He wants beef to be stuffed in all Dosas around the world.

He loves to alter his own destiny and cuts his hands for better palmistry. He dictates resignation letter and kills people to the tune of HAPPY BIRTHDAY to you.

The lone cowboy on the dusty roads is bumped off pretty soon in his crusade only to be sent back with a special VISA granted by Chitragupt himself. He is teleported back to earth, specifically to Mumbai.

The rest of the journey is a simple tale of bloody revenge by a vegetarian cowboy with questionable choice in color and material of clothing.

He loves his Lover locked in his Locket but can’t resist the nice girl who works in not so nice places, Mango Dolly.

Her massive cleavage is no give away to the heart of gold she carries, but Murugun is not ‘just another cowboy’, he immediately, looks deep, and just about in a flash realizes, MANGO DOLLY IS A GOOD GIRL.

Together they team up, he guns down the bad guys she ties up his wounds with every ounce of clothing that’s left on her body. A love striptease for a bloody gun-slinging lover. Ah!

QGM has been a ride. What a ride. Just one month and I have seen 2 films being worthy of permanent COLLECTIONS.

Kaminey and QGM.

Have still not got over the carnatic spiced GOOD, BAD and UGLY signature tune.


imran khanImran Khan is the latest bollywood celeb to join Twitter. Karan Johar introduced him to it. Imran can be found at .

We have also updated the list of other bollywood celebs on twitter. Take your pick.


Priyanka Chopra –

Uday Chopra –

Sonam Kapoor –

Ritesh Deshmukh –

Mallika Sherawat –

Gul Panag –

Dino Morea –

Ayesha Takia –

Lara Dutta –

Anushka Sharma –

Rahul Khanna –



Ram Gopal Varma –

Shekhar Kapur –

Saket Chaudhary –

Karan Johar –

Hansal Mehta –

Sujoy Ghosh –

Tarun Mansukhani –

Madhur Bhandarkar –

Kaizad Gustad –



Vishal Dadlani –

 Shreya Ghoshal –


Others (Producer s/ Writers/ Magazine)

Pritish Nandy –

Shridhar Raghavan –

Amit Khanna – 

Bobby Bedi –

Filmfare –

We are sure, have missed many others. Do let us know.

Whatever that means! Blue stars Akshay Kumar, Sanjay Dutt, Lara Dutta, Zayed Khan and Katrina Kaif. The film is positioned as India’s first big budget underwater film and has music by A R Rahman. The first song promo of the film is out and its by Kylie Minogue. Check it out.

AvatarNaam to suna hoga! James Cameron!

Confirmed a pass for 20 mins of Avatar in 3D. But was bit apprehensive about travelling for 90 mins for those 20 mins of Avatar. 90 minutes of travel by taxi, train and auto rickshaw. And then the inner voice woke up and said – fuck you dude, its historic! It has never happened before. Tickets for 20 minutes of any film and you are thinking about it! Your mind should exchange positions with your arse. Atleast the arse would not dare to think. And so I was in front of the screen with James Cameroon introducing the film. He assured that it got no spoiler.

Wow! Super-wow! What was that ? Spectacular. Are they men or machine, real or computer generated ? The screening had five scenes and the theatrical promo of the film. It starts with a briefing to the marines about the mission, getting into the avatar form, the hero in the other world fighting huge creatures (dinosaurs with colourful wings kind), more creatures and meeting the love interest and finally riding one of the dragon like creatures and then the trailer. Its a new world and it looks real!

The only problem with Avatar is the hype. Super-hype! 14 years or so in the making and all that! And so if you land up wondering what earth shattering you are going to see, then its nothing. But if you look at it like a cinema buff and know the real story behind it, Avatar doesnt need explanation. 3D, colours, action, creatures, battle, real or computer generated characters and big canvas…gimme more, gimme blue! And if you over-dissect it like Roger THE Ebert has done, there is no fun!

And the big question – so will cinema no longer depend on actors’ dates ? Its all machines now ? The new Avatar! December 18th will give a clear picture. The world might never be the same again! To understand it better, click here and here. Has all the details about the new techniques and cameras. Know and understand the real stories behind all that jazz!

BTW, if you still havent seen the Avatar trailer online, click the play button.

quickgun muruganYenna Rascala, whats the score ? Seven films this friday! We say, phunk it. We are interested in only one, Shashanka Ghosh! Dont mind it!

The film stars Dr Rajendra Prasad in lead role alongwith Naseer and Rambha. Few early reviews are out.

Taran Adarsh (Indiafm) – On the whole, Quickgun Murugan is an innovative experience. The adventures should appeal to the youth mainly – 3/5

Anupama Chopra (NDTV) – Quick Gun Murugun isn’t the roller coaster ride it could have been but I still recommend you make time for it. Because it’s wacky, original and inventive – 2.5/5

Chandrima Pal (Rediff) – QMG is as delicious as Mrs Murugan’s dosas. As Rice Plate would have said, “A1, Tip Top! – 3.5/5

Khalid Mohamed (Aslibaat) – The film’s chief quality is that it is wildly different, madcap and keeps you in a bright mood. Now that’s saying helluva lot in these days of kambakts and kamineys – 3/5

Rajeev Masand (CNN IBN) – If all you’re looking for is a relaxed time at the movies, then believe me, this is Good Fun Murugun – 3/5

Avijit Ghosh (TOI) – You cannot blame director Shashanka Ghosh and writer Rajesh Devraj for not trying something different. They are bang on with the movie’s looks. Too bad, the team fails to create its soul – 2.5/5

Shubhra Gupta (Indian Express) – We like. The rest doesn’t really make our day, `machaa’ – 3/5

Minty Tejpal (Mumbai Mirror) – I hear there’s talk of a sequel in the offing. Well, knowing Shashanka and Devi all too well, if the two talented but stubborn eccentrics do manage to collaborate again, it should be well worth it. Take that I say, Austin Powers – 3/5

Baradwaj Rangan ( New Indian Express) – A kitschy spoof of Tamil Westerns has big laughs and one small problem: even at an hour-and-a-half, it overstays its welcome.

Sanjukta Sharma (Livemint) – You either get Quick Gun or you don’t. But just watch the film for the experiment it is. There aren’t so many out there.

Kaveree Bamzai (India Today) – I would rather watch a Rajnikant movie in Tamil with no subtitles for entertainment – 1/5

Gaurav Malani (Indiatimes)The 2-minute parody of Shah Rukh Khan in Om Shanti Om (from where the character of Quick Gun Murugun was derived) is much more entertaining than this entire excuse for a movie. So much of noise on the pretext of parody! We do mind it  – 1.5/5

Except few reviews, it seems the score is between 2.5/3 for QGM!

Talking of international cinema, he was last seen in Ang Lee’s Lust, Caution in exactly half-blink and miss role! But managed to hog some good newspace even with that bit. Anupam Kher will soon be seen in Woody Allen’s next, for which he shot for three days in London.  Kher plays Freida Pinto’s father in the film. To read about Kher’s experience, click here.

Freida Pinto – if someone ever needs some gyaan on gaining mileage from a film, she is the right candidate. Not even ten minutes role in Slumdog Millionaire and she bagged films with Julian Schanel and Wodly Allen. Currently she is busy shooting for Woody’s untitled film in London. She stars opposite Josh Brolin. Scroll down for on location pics.