Posts Tagged ‘Ranbir kapoor’

Barfi! – Nostalgia for the Light

Posted: September 14, 2012 by moifightclub in cinema, movie reviews, reviews
Tags: , ,

Here’s a game to start with. If i say “nostalgia” and ask you to give 10 words that comes to mind, there are very high chances that if you have grown up in 70s or 80s, or even early 90s, you will find all those ten elements in Barfi! What else is a “radio”? Just another symbol for that old world charm. No wonder it has inspired the name for the lead character as well the title of the film. Quaint is the keyword in this postcard written by Anurag Basu and posted from a small hill town post box.

It’s kind of love triangle between Barfi (Ranbir Kapoor), Shruti (Illeana DÇruz) and Jhilmil (Priyanka Chopra). He can’t speak. She doesn’t speak. And the third one who is unlike the other two – can speak, hear and think, she doesn’t have the guts. So there are hardly any dialogues between the three and this is where Basu shines as a director. He creates simple and gorgeous moments between the lead characters and his camera captures it by dipping every frame in nostalgia. If i am not wrong, he might have started the film that way too. The film opens with a text plate where Basu dedicates the film to his father. Ileana’s look and get up is based on his Mother (see the making of the film where he talks about it). And everything else somehow reminds you that Basu is trying to go back to his roots. As the film opens, it tries to soak you in the same mood – old man, phone call, flashback, voice over, train journey (by the window seat), curvy roads, hill station, tunnel, rain, green fields, paper toys. Aha, you know the drift. And it continues that way with soap bubbles, fireflies and more. Ten down?

Basu’s film is set in a world of disarming charm where naivety wins over everything, where love is all you need. And it’s so hard to believe it all in today’s cynical and materialistic world. Would you? I don’t know. Just the other day i was still trying to figure out the madness for the new IPhone. Well, art and design is fine but it doesn’t come cheap. And it reminded me of an incident during the Doha Tribeca Film Fest. They had a segment for short films for Under-13. The film which won the first prize left me pondering. It was about a kid who gets a new expensive mobile phone and then he starts behaving like a phone. He needs to be charged, needs the signals and his body behaves like the keypad which can be operated. All treated in a comic tone but i was left wondering if the kid’s world really revolved around a mobile phone. This is the only story he could think of? Life as a mobile phone? May be the black humour of the kid’s real life was better than the film. May be i am just old fashioned? May be we were different as kids. May be every generation says the same. But one thing is for sure – we were never told to chase money and materials. May be that’s why it all feels weird now. And may be that’s why Basu’s characters had to be “challenged” in this era to not chase the “money and materials”. And the one who chases it, she….well, that would be a spoiler.

I never bothered to watch Basu’s last film Kites which was a big flop and it never looked like his film to start with. Even when he plagiarised entire plot in his previous films, they were always visually strong. Parts of Barfi is inspired too but Basu is in top form with this one. Almost everything is pitch perfect in direction except two issues – the thriller element in the film looked so weird and forced. It just doesn’t gel. And what’s with the crisscross flashback narrative? Sometimes even flashback in a flashback. It became confusing at so many points and i was wondering if Barfi! is the Inception of flashbacks. Wouldn’t a simpler narrative be better? Aha, blame it again on nostalgia – flashback! And characters talking to the camera with their names coming on screen. Why? No clue.

But extra points to the film for not trying hard to work on your tear glands to get the sympathy vote. Please note, Mister Bhansali.

As the trailers of the film came out, we all thought that Priyanka is going to kill the film. If she is controlled, she can do magic. Remember Kaminey? But mostly she goes over the top and is melodramatic. She proved everyone wrong and how! It takes some time to adjust to the fact that it’s Priyanka Chopra playing Jhilmil but once you do that, it’s hard to believe the way she portrays the character. Not a single false note. And Ranbir Kapoor, what’s next? He is born to act. I don’t have too many adjectives to define his natural talent to get into the skin of every character that he portrays. Supporting characters are well cast and some of them ooze so much warmth even though they don’t have a single dialogue.

Go with little patience and watch it. Barfi! falters on some uneven tracks too but it’s a rare film which will melt your cynicism. At least for two hours.

Or, may be, it’s just good old nostalgia. Those flip-flop green window panels of old Calcutta always does it for me.

Or, may be, Barfi! is the answer to that Johnny Cash song “Where did we go right?”. If you haven’t heard the song, click the play button and enjoy.

And if you want the lyrics of the song to sing along, click here.

– Post by @CilemaSnob

Ranbir Kapoor films have become a must-wait-for event and Pritam’s music the reverse – must-avoid-if-possible. Yet, surprise! What’s this mellifluous music we hear trailing off our TV sets and music players? Is it really Barfi music composed by Pritam? It is and a delicious blend of warmth-quirk-melody at that! Here’s the music review by the almost-resident MFC music reviewer @rohwit. This post was originally written for and published here. But Rohit being a friend, we thought he wouldn’t really mind if we stole it. 😉 Enjoy the spoils!

Ala Barfi! – Right from the first moment when you hear the whistle, you know this song is all about fun! A narrative of the alleged ‘sad’ life of Barfi, the song takes a lighter take on the situation rather than brooding over it (Sanjay Leela Bhansali, take note). There are 2 versions of this song. One is sung by Mohit chauhan and one by Swanand Kirkire. The version by Mohit Chauhan is peppier and stays true to the mood that the song aims to create. Swanand kirkire on the other hand, gives a naughtier touch to the song (so much so that ‘Munna mute hee aansu bahaye’ part doesn’t leave any impact in his version as much as it does in Mohit’s). Both versions are good in their own right. I liked the Mohit Chauhan version better because it’s easy on ears. At times, with the Swanand Kirkire version, the voice is too heavy for a song that is to be sung lightly. In Mohit’s version, in each ‘antra’, you can hear some brief ‘tom and jerry prank style music pieces’ even as Mohit sings. Kudos to Swanand Kirkire for penning  superb lyrics though.

Main kya karu – The song starts very quickly and in a very kya karu from ‘Wake Up Sid’ mood. The song doesn’t have an elaborate music setting before the singer starts. Nikhil Paul George starts the song with less than 6 seconds of music into the track. The ‘guitar resignation of a note’ at every ‘uff’ in the song is cleverly placed. The ‘antras’ have a ‘hopeless in love’ mood to them which is immensely relatable and melodiously performed. The song again is very easy on ears and has a lazy feel to it due to the absence of ‘orchestra overload’ sort of music setting. Liked. Super liked.

Kyon – Papon, (I mean THE Papon!) starts the song with a very 1970’s beat accompanying him. You almost miss a romantic accordion from the setting. The sweet violin arrangement makes it up very well though. Excellently penned by Neelesh Misra, the song makes just enough space for Sunidhi Chauhan to take over one antra and leave us mesmerized. Excellent display of two master artists at work. The only grouse I have is that I left wanting to hear Sunidhi Chauhan for one more Antra. Thoroughly enjoyable and hummable. Papon, sing more for us, will you? Please! The 25 second-odd simple twinkling music arrangement towards the end of the song puts us back to sleep and the song ends.

Phir le aaya dil (Reprise) – Sung by Arijit Singh in a contemporary music setting (yes, with faint tabla throughout the song) and ghazal-like lyrics. This sums up the song best . The use of piano in between and the general mood of this song is just too good. There is another version of this song as well and we will go there in a minute but this song has more layers because it’s not an out-n-out ghazal. The vocals of Arijit are apt for the song (And reminded me of Shail Hada. Where’s he by the way?) Pritam, is that you? Really? Pleasantly surprised! For me, the best song of the album.

Phir le aaya dil – Sung by Rekha Bhardwaj, this composition is an out and out ghazal – very linear in it’s approach. Not many layers. Not sure if this will feature in the film. We have heard Rekha Bhardwaj sing many a ghazals such as this one so it doesn’t come as a surprise that she hugs the lyrics, hi-5’s the music setting and sings with her usual aplomb.

Aashiyan – Excellent accordion play starts this song and Shreya Ghosal greets us smiling. Nikhil Paul George makes another appearance and compliments Shreya Ghosal superbly. This is a happy song. There is  flute  and voilin play in between and it does to us just what good music should!  Yes, music to the ears. The adorable ‘almost’ yodelling is placed perfectly in the song and you can’t help but smile everytime it comes up. Excellent arrangement, this.

Sawali si raat – Beautiful piano starts the song and guitars drift away in the background. Arijit Singh whisper-starts the song. The song talks about ‘sleep’ but the singer sounds clearly out of place in this song. Not comfortable with the subdued singing, Arijit perhaps wasn’t the right choice of the song. The tune nevertheless is quite hummable (Youtube ‘versions’ of this ahoy!). The only blip on the otherwise excellent album and for this, I can’t penalize Mr. Pritam.

Phir le aaya dil (by Shafqat Amanat Ali) – A very ‘raabta‘ like start (initial notes remind you of the Siyah Raatein version of Raabta), piano and a gentle music arrangement, thankfully aided by sarangi this time starts this song and Shafqat Amanat Ali Khan gets on with it. The moment you hear this song you feel it is the ‘cleanest’ arranged and presented song of all the versions. Best part – you cannot (and should not) compare the 3 versions of this song. Arijit Singh’s version is blessed with more ‘feel’. Rekha Bharadwaj and Shafqat’s version is more directed towards singing it right. I cannot get over the excellent use of our very own ‘Sarangi’ in this version though. Not nitpicking but please do pay chotu attention to the way Shafqat Amanat Ali Khan pronounces ‘Baaki’. This is the version that will make you cry a bit, yep.

Special mention – Shafqat Amanat Ali Khan has to be appreciated for not choosing similar songs and falling into the ‘Rahat Fateh Ali Khan’ sahab wala ‘typecast’ groove.
Aashiyan – Nikhil Paul George goes on and about in this solo version. While the duet version sounds fresh with Shreya Ghosal (and if you have heard that version already), you will miss her voice in this one because the energy is a little low. The tempo, music arrangement (save for voilins) is pretty much the same. The only difference that I could make out was the spacing between the opening lines of the mukhda. The lines are spaced using violins so that the listener doesn’t feel that the male voice is singing the female part as well. Not a song that would make you buy this album on a stand alone basis but compliments the album very well.
It’s already been said, blogged and screamed that Pritam has outdone himself with this album and I will just reiterate it shamelessly! You can visualize the film when you hear the songs. If the teaser of Barfi looks like picture perfect painting, the music adds beautiful colors to it. Thrilled beyond words, Pritam has given us one of the best music albums of this year!

Take a bow, Pritam…I owe you a 5 star chocolate, for this tasty Barfi!

It started as a twitter discussion. As always, we were accusing Anurag Kashyap of following the mantra “It’s All About Loving Your Friends (and their films)”. Later on, we found out that AK had told Imtiaz Ali, yeh film aapse kahin zyada mujhe samajh me aaye hai. Or something like that. Well, now how do you react.  Since i don’t have a memory chip inside me, the quotes here are not verbatim. Have tried to present the essence of the thought.

Back to AK. As AK was continuously defending Rockstar, and even claimed that there have been more than 10 Rockstar-converts so far. Those who didn’t like it the first time or had problems with it, went again, and they liked it much more the second time. AK told Jahan to go and watch it again, the second time, and he will pay for the ticket. I asked for one extra. AK offered 8 extra tickets so that 10 more people who had issues with it, or hated it when they saw it the first time, can go and watch it again. It was FCFS and all the tickets were gone in seconds. Well, i think i was the only one who liked it a lot when i saw it the first time. I could understand all the criticism for the film but it was Ranbir and Rahman who made me buy it completely.

Kashyap sent the tickets in next one hour and offered more – Imtiaz Ali will also be there after the film to take on every kind of question/criticism. Word spread fast and more people wanted to join in for the post-screening discussion. I was skeptical. It’s 9:30pm show. By the time it will get over and we will come out of the screening, it will be 1pm. Raat ke 1 baje? Yaar dost toh theek hai, anjan logon ka kya? If Imtiaz doesn’t turn up, am not going to offer my ass to them. I blamed it all on Kashyap. Yes, AK has promised that Imtiaz will be there.

Film got over. I came running out because the show was running late. Imtiaz Ali was there. As promised, Kashyap delivered. And what’s more, got some rolls and biryani too. I thought there will be 10-15 of us. We sat down on the stairs outside Cinemax. And soon there were about 30-40 cinema lovers who sat there for the next three hours discussing Rockstar, its structure, music, dubbing, casting, love, guilt, and life in general.

So 3hour long discussion in one post? And we didn’t record anything. Let me try. Will just go on typing as it comes to my mind. Try if you can make out any sense from this rambling.

AK started the discussion by saying that we will discuss Nargis Fakhri for the first 20mins. We can discuss everything else later on. Priority.

IA : It was difficult to find a girl who could look the part and do the talking too. Also, whatever you do with Ranbir, it’s difficult to play him down. So it became more difficult to find someone who could match upto him. When Nargis joined the set, one of my ADs felt the same that you guys are talking about it. But slowly it worked out. I feel that it will happen the same with Nargis.

AK – Do you know how was Waheeda Rahman described in her debut film? Believe it or not, as a maid.

But, really? A new face who could deliver the lines?

IA – It’s difficult to explain here, not sure how to do it but in a romantic film you are always looking for that soul connect. For that magic to happen and come out on screen. I felt it did happen with Nargis.

Navjot pointed out about her voice which is dubbed and other female actors who played the role of Nargis’ relatives.

IA – We tried it with three dubbing artists. It just wasn’t working. Mona dubs for most heroines and i wanted to try someone new. But nothing worked and when Mona did, i thought it was working. So went back to her.

About casting of other female characters, he just smiled and ran his fingers through his hair locks.

i was dying to ask him about his cinema template of ‘Cool and confused lovers will travel a (physical) distance to realise their true love’ which i wrote about it here. Does he realise it when he is writing?

He smiled and said, it’s my shortcoming. I just don’t realise it at all. Never do. May be it happens sub-consciously but it ends up like that.

So how did Rockstar started?

IA: Muazzam, who was with Whistling Woods, i was trying to help him for his film. And he had a story where the character feels that dil tootene pe hi sangeet banegi, i really liked it. Asked him i can take it forward and write it. He said, since nothing is happening, i can go ahead. Then he came back and said he is making it. So i abandoned it. Then again it went to and fro for few years and nothing happened till i decided to make it. The earlier version was quite bad and different from this one. ( IA wanted John Abraham for the film then).

And the narrative structure? why so?

IA : It was written  like it. Two reasons. I felt this character is a star, so it would be good to have some kind of mystery around him, take him away from others, what happens to him, when it happens, how it happens, the narrative style gave me that choice to play around him, take him away, add mystery, distance to him. So you will say that it’s used more in the portions when he is becoming or has become Rockstar. Also, i tried reading it straight. It was becoming boring, monotonous. I thought let’s go with it. So all the scenes were written like it. And at many places it was economical thing to do. Like the sequence where Heer is introduced, boys are talking about her, following her, she is still performing on stage. The sequence is inter-cut with scenes where they are falling for her.

Her death? It seems very simplistic solution to do it.

IA : (thinks for sometime) It was always written like that. Always. Not sure how. Also because it was Heer-Ranja story in a way. So it went in the same flow.

Prague? What’s this fascination to go out and get the firangis to dance on desi music?

IA : i travel a lot and lot for musical stuff. In many of the European countries that i have been to, i have met many musicians who have very distinct Indian roots. That gypsie musicians who have roots here. Also, when he goes there, he is making music with them. Its their music also, their vocals too, he is picking up the music and creating his own sound. It never seemed out of place to me.

Through out the discussion, it was difficult to control Kashyap and Ali’s fanboy Navjot who were too eager to share their versions of all the answers. Kashyap explained how he has been to so many concerts outside India where he was the only member in the audience who was sleeping through out and there were foreigners who were completely into it. With music it happens. I nodded my head, been to one such Himesh Reshammiya concert in London. Oh, occupational hazard. But those were mostly NRIs.

But it’s easily one of Rahman’s best album.

IA – You guys can’t believe how embarrassed I was doing the recording. It was only Rahman in the studio and I was sitting behind him and Mohit Chauhan was in the booth. I suddenly get up, put the mic on and tell Mohit that saar, aap note ko hit nahi kar rahe ho. Yeh ho nahi raha and blah blah. And then as I come back to my seat, I realise that Rahman saab was sitting there, but he just doesn’t say anything. He asks, Mohit, ready? And we record again. Just like an operator. And i was so embarrassed, i could not believe what i was doing. It’s Rahman. And i am telling the singer what to do. And i did it again, i just could not believe. Rahman is in a different space. It’s always ‘inclusive music’ for him. He will take everyone together and move ahead. Unko chor diya toh dham se giroge, kahan giroge iska koi bharosa nahi. But if it happens with you and you know what you want, he is just magcial.

Kashyap also spoke a lot about his experience of working with Rahman. The absolutely no fuss guy and blah blah.

IA : i was just playing the 40min long version of Kun Faaya Kun and other songs where Rahman is just jamming, it takes you to a different state of trance. i was playing it at home and everyone was so into it.

WAIT! What? 40min version of Kun Faaya Kun? Please please please, is it possible to release it somewhere.

Imtiaz said he will talk to Rahman about it and will try his best to release it. Rahman fans, spread the good word and let’s try to get it out.

One issue lot of people had was with the character – the Rockstar. He doesn’t smoke, no drinks, no drugs, all clean. That’s not what Rockstars do, right? I am sure you must have thought about it and it’s the easiest thing to do.

IA : Many musicians whom i have seen from close quarters over the years, i have realised that the daaru-drug is not the reason. The intoxication part is not the substance, it’s the music, it’s the mood, it’s the state of being. That just becomes a good and easy way. So it was deliberate attempt to avoid it. To look at it from a different angle.

So love is his drug.

And everything else. That’s the only thing he has.

As beautifully written in this piece on Rockstar. May be the best piece. Not very long ago when the first trailer of Rockstar came out and as always, we, the ever curious souls were debating what to expect from the film, Kashyap sent a direct message on twitter saying that it’s this generation’s Pyaasa. As always, i took Kashyap’s words with a pinch  bowl of salt. But when i saw the film i realised what he meant. It’s mere samne se hata lo yeh duniyatumhari hai tum hi sambhalo yeh duniya….yeh duniya agar mil bhi jaaye toh kya hai. But then, its already too late, you can do too little. As Jordan says in one of the scenes, mujhe nahi banna bada. aur kuch nahi hai mere paas. He doesn’t fit into the family, in their space or their profession. His friends don’t fit into his space anymore. He is just a label for them, a brand, a photograph to show off. Aha, lets get back to Imtiaz.

And his rage. Media? No issues. No politics.

He is a singer from Pitampura. He has no politics. He has no issues. Ganwar hai woh character. Music hi hai jo hai. But slowly he is losing it all. No emotional support. Family gone. Girl gone. Music not happening. He is breaking down. Sukoon nahi hai ab. Keeda hai andar. Woh kuch nahi samjhta hai jo uske aas-paas kya ho raha hai. Woh sab incidental hai.

And Tibet. ( Pls note i don’t remember the exact words. Whatever i can remember, trying to put it together. So kripya in quotes ki baal ki khaal na nikale.)

IA said that like many of us, he also belong to Mcleodganj Lovers Club. He is aware about the Tibet issue, the different viewpoints within the group, who is asking for what, their student politics, how it is related to Delhi politics.

IA : But when i went to Censor Board, i got to know the exact official stand of the Indian Government. So when they told me, i thought if we blur it, i had no clue that it will become such an issue. Because people didn’t notice there are bigger issues in that montage. There are Kashmiris there and some more people. I wanted to make it a bigger montage with others too as if the sadda haq song becomes an anthem for every kind of right that people are asking for. Also, there are Tibetan flags all over, people in the song. And i felt that it’s not related to the character directly, he is not endorsing anything, its the song that’s been used by everyone. Never realised it will turn into such. May be, if i hadn’t blurred it, nothing would have happened. But i have been getting so many messages from Tibet associations that they are happy to see it there. It conveys what’s there.

The other call which i was skeptical about was of bastardizing Shammi Kapoor’s memories. I was feeling very odd about it. Because when we started our promotions, during that time he died. I was so worried that we would be accused of using him. But thankfully that didn’t happen.

And the end. Not to endorse the sad ending, commercial compulsion.

IA : It was never any commercial compulsion, not at all. I felt that when she is gone, for him, he would like to have those memories.

But it would have been great if there was no happy montage when the credit roll starts. We could have come out of the theatre with that feeling of “incompleteness”, as described by Kashyap.

IA : May be, but that’s the way i felt. It’s their field now. Away from anything.

But i love those visuals when they are dancing madly with those bright back lights.

And what else?

Aha, there was more. Have put everything i could remember. Those of you who were there, please keep on adding in the comments section.

So after watching it twice, i feel that Rockstar’s biggest problem is it’s title. Because that sets up expectations of a different kind. In one of the script labs that i attended, remember Sriram Raghavan talking about the title of the film. That’s the first pitch where you sell the film to the audience. Creativity is a different beast but when the film is going to the audience, every small step matters. So this Rockstar is unlike others. Forget drinking and drugs, he doesn’t even go for sex when offered on a platter. Remember the scene with Aditi Rao. This Rockstar knows only love.

After watching the film, a friend wrote on his FB wall, Imtiaz bhai, aur bhi gham hai zamane me mohabbat ke siwa. But, i guess, Imtiaz would say, par us aashiq ka gham toh sirf mohabbat hi tha.

(PS – Those of you who are thinking that Kashyap could bribe us with movie tickets, discussion session with Imtiaz, rolls and biryani, well, don’t make us and our cinema look so cheap. You can try with us next time. And who better than a movie buff like Kashyap to understand it. Plus, this is not the first time that Kashyap has done something like this. He has done bigger and better things, and not only for us, just for one reason – cinema. We just don’t shout out from rooftop every time. And am sure this will not be the last time even though we love or hate his films 😉 For some of you, it might be a completely impossible thing to understand. But then, as someone said, the only difference between life and cinema is that in cinema everything has to make sense, and in life, it doesn’t. )

(PS1 : This post is not to justify anything. Not to try to convert you. It either works for you or it doesn’t. And every stand is fine. We wanted a dialogue, an open discussion to hear the filmmaker and there are hardly few filmmakers who are open to criticism. And even lesser number of those whom we would love to hear. So, thanks to Imtiaz Ali and Anurag Kashyap.)

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Pics : Sumit Purohit.

Rockstar is Imtiaz Ali’s fourth film after Socha Na Tha, Jab We Met and Love Aaj Kal. Thanks to some good friends, I had some idea about the story of the film long before it was announced because Imtiaz has been trying to make the film since last few years. But after SNT, JWM and LAK, what i was more curious to know was that if Imtiaz will follow the same template of his previous three films. And the template is…

Cool and confused lovers will travel a (physical) distance to realise their true love.

Now try SNT, JWM and LAK. Cool boy will meet cool girl. They will be easy to like and good fun to hang out with. They will become friends. They fall in love but are not sure about it. They will be confused and take a wrong step which will lead to some kind of travel and they will finally meet.

Add marriage to it and you are done. With marriage, Ali takes one step at a time. SNT – the marriage talk is on. JWM – She is about to get married. Almost. LAK – She gets married. SPOILER Rockstar – She gets married and makes love with the boyfriend. SPOILER Ends. Next is what? Extra-marital affair? Let’s wait and watch.

In Rockstar, Imtiaz Ali follows the same template. But as the name suggests, it’s also about music. So what works and what doesn’t? Opting for the easy route by writing it in points.

– The film entirely belongs to Ranbir Kapoor. Hand him all the awards for the Best Actor this year. It has been terrible year anyway. And nobody comes close to him. He is such a delight on screen, makes everything look so natural.

– And it would have been a different game without Rahman. After Ranbir, the film belongs to him. It’s easily the best album of the year and i wanted to see more of songs in the film.

– When it comes to rom-com, writer Imtiaz knows his stuff really well. The scenes, the dialogues, the moments – he knows how to write and handle them. How about a rom-com masterclass, Mr Ali?

– Nargis Fakhri. Great screen presence, gorgeous to look at but as soon as she opens her mouth, it’s all over. Terrible casting. Was it just a silent audition for her? If it was someone else, the film could have gone to another level.

– The film suffers from the same curse which most desi films have : the curse of 2nd half. It seems Imtiaz had no clue what to do in the second half. Is there a way we can edit out “interval” from our films? That seems to be the main culprit.

SPOILER

–  Going by conventional mainstream rule book, the film has a sad ending. But looks like we have become so scared of the box office monster that even when the story is going in that direction, we are finding it difficult to endorse it on screen.

SPOILER Ends.

– Kun faaya fun gave me goose flesh. It’s not the way it’s shot, it’s the moment it captures.

– Shammi saab, such a graceful presence. Wish the ‘dichotomy of fame’ track had only him and Ranbir without jumping over to other scenes. Even when he is playing the shehnai, you can see that he is making the efforts to make it look real. He is just not faking it.

– They really blurred the “Tibet” part in the “Free Tibet” banner. That’s disgusting. What is an artist without his/her politics? And this is such a far fetched endorsement. Weird because they shot the song in Dharmshala with Tibetans who are waving their flags and banners and are on stage with Ranbir.

– The narrative style is not linear. Almost every second sequence moves between past, present and future. Am not sure if it helped the narrative in anyway. Need to watch it again. Also, was it done in the edit? Or Imtiaz thought about it while writing the script? Any inputs will be helpful.

Muazzam Beg has an opening story credit along with Imtiaz Ali.

– Was damn disappointed with Kumud Mishra in That Girl In Yellow Boots. He has compensated for everything in the film. Also, can we see more of Aditi Rao Hydari?

– What else? Aha, Rumi saab gets proper credit in the film.

Go, watch it and do share your thoughts. Am sure this film is going to divide the house completely.

If you want music on your twitter timeline, you must follow Rohit. And if you are lucky enough, your mailbox will be flooded with some evergreen goodies. So when it came to a post on the most awaited album of the year, who better than him to do the job.

With Couples Retreat and some bits here and there, i thought we have lost Rahman. And lost him for Retreat? That’s worst. But it seems he is back and how. As one of the song goes, i wanna sing O nadaan parindey ghar aa ja..for him. Hope we get more. Read On…

In the times of ‘gone with the click’ I cannot remember the last time when the curiosity of a music score being released was even half as it was for the soundtrack of ‘Rockstar’. Guilt is my witness as I shamelessly searched all the ‘shady’ sites to catch hold of this album because right from the first promo we could all smell ‘Rahman on the rocks’ soundtrack. Does it live up to the hype? (Yes T-series, we are talking about the artificial hype you created…Boo you for that by the way!)

1. Phir se udd chala – A folkish chorus of girls humming a tune which you associate with hill stations normally, welcomes you to this song with Mohit Chauhan taking over almost instantly. A song set up with a nomadic feel and the usually accused of being ‘Instrument heavy’ AR Rahman gives us a flavor of how can he blend the music in the background. The first 2 minutes successfully create the anticipation of the song taking off and Mohit chauhan doesnt disappoint throughout. A very positive song.

2. Jo bhi main – Guitar…Yes ‘THAT’guitar starts off with Mohit chauhan throwing his voice melodiously. If you hear attentively you will find the chorus (which is brilliant throughout the album) is set in a very theatrical and live concert style. It doesn’t give you the feeling that a few back up vocals were called in the studio to ‘sing’ (like the ones in the soundtrack of Rock On). The music setting is mostly soft and almost all the ‘hysterics’ are done by a wonderful mix of the ‘crowd’ and Mohit chauhan. Meaning wise, a very deep song especially the part where lyricist has revealed that all of us are just mirrors….I just cannot get the beautiful and very theatrical crowd effect of the song. Two thumbs up!

 3. Kateya karoon – The punjabi folk sounds welcome you to a bubbly song mixed with good bass to begin with and then the characteristic (and almost continuous ‘hoye hoye’ chorus). Harshdeep Kaur has sung this song in a very ‘Jaspinder Narula’ style by occassionally making her voice heavy. A generally happy song. Personally speaking, It did not touch me at all because I felt that the song just couldn’t take off. The song iis just under 4 minutes so it just comes and goes.

4. Kun Faya Kun – AR Rahman starts and is accompanied by a very ‘dargah like’ harmonium and Javed ali joins. The surreal atmosphere of this composition is very infectious and you would definitely end up listening to it more than once. The ‘beautiful romance between ‘claps’ and a slow guitar is ‘oh so very Rahman’. Javed Ali in between calls out to the power that be. Mohit Chauhan joins the party and gives the song his soul. The part where Mohit is reciting words with a very faint harmonium is what makes this song very very special. The near jugalbandi feel towards the end of the song is surreal and hasn’t been heard for a long time. A very pure song. If you feel it reminds you of ‘Khwaja mere khwaja’ then the purpose of the song is accomplished because when you call out to ‘Maula’, it doesn’t matter if someone else has remembered ‘Maula’ before you. Again, the way the song ends is very very theatrical with AR Rahman leaving a haunting echo.

5. Sheher mein – Karthik and Mohit – Not a melodious earth shattering song but a funny song largely thanks to the overall sound of it. The ‘composer’ is very vocal about how should Mohit Chauhan sing this song to ensure that the song is made ‘caller tune’ and is a ‘hit in UP and Bihar’. Mohit by the way croons it well. This will be a treat to see in the film. Clearly the composer (in the film) wants Mohit chauhan to stick to the ‘hit formula’ and not ‘innovate’…but does Mohit listen? Melodiously NO!

6. Hawa Hawa – Acoordion, voilin and a catchy chorus start this retro feel song with somewhat Arabian undertone. A good song because of the way Mohit chauhan has sung it. Hear it attentively and you can almost feel Mohit chauhan dancing in the studio while singing this. The musical setting you might argue is very ‘Zubeida’ like but then hear it and you will hear words like ‘waat’ and ‘bhajiya’! Towards the end you do feel that may be the composer is trying a little too hard. Might grow when the film hits the theatres. (Mohit ‘Meows’ in this song by the way) : )

7. Aur Ho – Mohit and Alma ferovic – A sinking feeling. Thats what the beginning tells you and Mohit chauhan confirms it with very powerful lyrics. The song has a ‘satrangi rey’ (Dil Se) feeling. The instruments are usually repeating short notes to create an eerie feeling. Mohit chauhan at times fades and then comes back almost dreamy/drugged with Alma in the background crying out. A song perfect for theatre performances depicting pain. The song really ends on a high. beautifully.

8. Nadaan Parindey – AR Rahman and Mohit chauhan – Carol like start with electric guitar. The song starts with Rahman requesting one to come back. The song has a very pop feel to it (Ok Ok I will use ‘pop’ and ‘rock’ interchangeably). The words like ‘Har karam ke kapdey mailey hain’ means that the song is advocating peace. Mohit chauhan almost cries out the fact that you will come back home no matter which road you take. The ‘chun chun khaiyoo maas’ (lines from Kabir I guess) are a misfit in the song so I did not like them at all. You might.

9. Tum Ko -Kavita subramaniam – From the start of this song, I got a feeling that this song is an old Rahman song. I hate to mention this but this came across as the weakest song of the album. Although the use of sarangi and tabla is very ghazal like, the song didn’t touch me at all. May be it was because of the fact that the other songs didn’t have me believe that there could be a ghazal like composition woven in between.

10. Sadda Haq – Yes…HELLL YES! Orianthi starts the guitar and tells you quite clearly that this would be the song that will result in the demise of a lot of woofers and speakers all over the world. Kicking ass from the beginning Mohit recites some lines which are very ‘rebellion’ in nature and then the song reaches the HIGH when Mohit along with the chorus cries out ‘Sadddaaaa Haq’. Trust me, when someone sings from heart, it reaches your heart and this so called SCREAM does exactly that. Cannot recall a song in the near future which shakes you up (in a good way) as this one. I could write an entire post on this song but I will stop. Do check this song out even if you feel it is a rip off from here there or somewhere (because I know such tribe exists who cannot accept a good thing from INDIAN composer you see).

Special mention – Would have been too easy for Imtiaz ali and AR Rahman to have opted for Ranbir’s voice at the beginning of the song but thankfully they have used Mohit chauhan. Keeps the wholesome feel alive to the song.

11. Tum ho – Mohit and Suzanne – Romantica! Aha! Suzanne shines in the background (like always) and Mohit chauhan does a vocal waltz around that feeling of someone’s presence and how he has lost himself and gained love. The song lasts for about 5 mins or so but ends leaving you wanting for more. Strange isn’t it? The tune is more or less similar to ‘Tum Ko’ mentioned above. I am yet to make an opinion about the song. Any help on this would be much appreciated 🙂

12. Tango for Taj – Here is a tango piece which is very old piece and signature Rahman. A typical song which if treated well will be a visual treat. The constant piano and the claps are just too good too be in a piece which just lasts for about 3 minutes. Two thumbs up.

13. The Dichotomy of Fame – Shehnai! oh how i have missed you after ‘Swades’ song. After opening this piece beautifully the shehnai mixes well with the rest of the instruments, yet enjoys a ‘lead vocal’ status. Just too good a piece to miss.

14. The Meeting Place – Ranbir Kapoor says one sentence and vanishes…leaving you with much curiosity about the film. No, I won’t write it here. Go discover yourself. In a way, this piece might give away the ending of this film. Or may be not. Spoiler? Let’s see.

This album is undoubtedly a coming of age experience for Mohit Chauhan because he has shouted and romanced at many different levels. A special mention for the master lyricist Irshad Kamil. It’s almost taken for granted that a rock album will have a ‘woofer-phaadu’ music but the character of the songs come out when the lyrics are powerful and it is certainly the case here.

AR Rahman and Imtiaz Ali have gone to the press stating that they have invested a lot of time in this album and when you hear it, you feel they might be right!

Rating – 4/5

So which track are you playing in loop?

(PS – For the complete credit list of the songs, click here.)

(PS1 – For more posts by Rohwit, you can check his blog almostareview.wordpress.com )

It’s raining trailers and how! After Agneepath and The Dirty Picture, the trailer of Imtiaz Ali’s Rockstar is finally out. The film stars Ranbir Kapoor and Nargis Fakhri. And the most interesting bit – A R Rahman’s music. And we will also get to see Shammi Kapoor one last time on the big screen. Bring it on!

So it looks like Imtiaz is recycling his old formula once again – cool and confused lovers will travel a distance (physically and emotionally) and discover true love. Socha Na Tha, Jab We Met, Love Aaj Kal, all follow the same formula. Lovers just take one more step ahead – about to marry(SNT), almost married (JWM), just married (LAK) and then they discover their true love. This one seems to be following the same route. New track – Rockstar bit and the music scene. Let’s see how it plays out.

And if sadda haq, aithye rakh is the sound of the film, gimme more!

Tip – DaMovieManiac

We are not sure who designed the poster of Anjaana Anjaani but we are sure about one thing – its a straight lift from An Education. Just check out both the posters. Need we say more! Tip by @damoviemaniac. The film is directed by Siddharth Anand and stars Ranbir Kapoor & Priyanka Chopra.

And to check out its theatrical trailer and to know its original source from where it has taken the inspiration, click here. We have put a bet! The goss from crew of Anjanaa Anjaani is that they have take the basic story idea from The Girl On The Bridge and have Bollywoodised it by adding naach-gaana & Las Vegas!

And here is the poster of An Education….