Posts Tagged ‘Tigmanshu Dhulia’

We are desperate for comebacks. And we are quick to dismiss too. All it takes is just a status update or 140 characters.

When Tigamanshu Dhulia’s last film, Sahib Biwi Aur Gangster released, it was the usual hype on the social networking platforms. As if friends, family and colleagues were dying to put that “comeback” tag on him. The film had it’s charm but it was nowhere close to what it was made out to be. The usual suspects tried the same with Ramu and his Not A Love Story. To put it mildly, that was unadulterated garbage in every way.

But, this is what a comeback looks like – Paan Singh Tomar. Ironic that the producers (UTV) had to sell the film as “from the director of Sahib Biwi Aur Gangster”. May be it wouldn’t have got a theatrical release even if it wasn’t for SBAG’s success. The film has been ready for quite sometime (about two years). They sent it to few desi festivals in USA where the general feedback was “Irrfan is good, film is bad”. News started doing the rounds that UTV was planning to dump it on tv along with some half a dozen other films. Then SBAG happened. Some strings were pulled, a release date was quickly announced and without much pubilcity or promotions, the film was released.

Those who have seen both the versions of the film, they said that music has surely been changed. But how much can just the “background music” change the film? No clue, not sure.

I went to see the film FDFS. Just because of that actor called Irrfan Khan. Or just Irrfan. Seems he has dropped his surname. Good, we have too many of them in this industry anyway. When i entered the auditorium, it felt like it was going to be a private screening only for me – the luxury that makers provide to few critics to give a bloated sense of being important and score some brownie points. Slowly some dozen people turned up including a director whose film has recently released.

The film opens with Brijendra Kala, an actor who is a delight to watch – the desi Bill Murray who knows his deadpan too well. As Irrfan narrates his story to Kala, it goes into flashback and we get to see the story of Paan Singh Tomar. I have been often told that narrating a story to a character to get into flashback is the worst device in a film. But with two terrific actors in the frame, they make everything mundane look so interesting. There are just counted few scenes between the two, but that thing called chemistry, well, it’s found in strange places between stranger people.

I have always felt that the mark of a good director is in the casting of those actors who have just one or two lines to deliver. You go to watch a film because of the lead actors but you come back home with those “character actors” who steal the show. This is where Paan Singh Tomar scores again. Even Zakir Hussain and Mahie Gill are so impressive in such small roles. Though it seems Nawazuddin had more to do in the film and it was edited out later on.

Paan Singh Tomar is the Tigamanshu we knew, the one we wanted to see again after Haasil. The director who could take us to a new place, away from bollywood where he knows the terrain, its politics and dialect well. Written by Sanjay Chouhan with dialogues by Dhulia, it captures the sound and soul of that barren land with a dose of black humour – a rarity in this industry. So when i saw his other film Shagird, i could not believe it was the same director. From one extreme to other – how could one go so far? As a screenwriter who saw the film with us  said, this is Race for intellectuals.

Welcome back, Tigmanshu. It’s been long.

And Irrfan? Well, he can do anything. Just anything. No wonder he is the only Khan they know in the west. It’s our bad luck that he is born in a country and at a time when we are obsessed with the weekend numbers and 100-crore mark, and we don’t make films that can’t justify his talent. Forget films, we don’t even dare to put him on magazine covers. I hope and pray that in your next birth you get a better place which knows how to respect talent.

The actor doesn’t need lines, his glances pack a punch. In the scene where he comes to meet his son and asks him not to touch him, when his son leaves and he looks around, that glance stays with you long after you have left the theater. Much like that awkward hug with his son’s girlfriend in one of my favourite films of all time, Namesake. He is about to hug her, she is about to kiss, and then that slight bend, slow movement and a strange look on his face. He can play young, can play old and even a father of a young man in the same film. He can run and romance with equal ease.

Only weird thing about the film is that it leaves you with a strange vacuous feeling – Not sure how you react to the character in the end. It keeps you engaged through the film but doesn’t hit the spot in the end which you desperately want it to.The emotional hook? Or may be just a bit of empathy.

As for Paan Singh Tomar, in other part of the world the most famous runner’s mom told him that life was like a box of chocolates, you never know what you’re gonna get. This side, we are sure about one thing – there’s no box, there are no chocolates and life is just a race which you must complete.

Tigmanshu Dhulia’s Paan Singh Tomar has been ready for quite sometime. And UTV has been sitting on it with no clue what to do with it. All kinds of reports were floating since a year or so. They sent it to few festivals abroad, intial reviews weren’t good, there was a plan to shelve it and then a direct-to-tv telecast. But with Saheb Biwi Ghulam’s success, it seems the film has got a new lease of life.

The problem is Tigmanshu Dhulia seems to be a completely unreliable filmmaker who can go any extreme – from a brilliant Haasil to a crapfest called Shagird and a SBG which is somewhere in between. If PST gets him back in the groove, we will be happy to be proved wrong.

The first look of Paan Singh Tomar is finally out. It stars Irrfan Khan and Mahie Gill. Have a look.

What’s wrong with the background music? There seems to be no sync between the visuals and the sound. What you don’t have in the visuals, you can’t compensate it with dhoom-dhaam-dhadaap. It looks tacky and nothing stays with you. Once over, you don’t feel like watching it again. Quite a disappointing trailer. If we still want to watch it, there’s only one reason – Irrfan Khan.

And here’s the official synopsis

Paan Singh Tomar is an untold true story of a simple farmer, a loyal soldier and a champion athlete who became one of India’s most dreaded dacoits!

Paan Singh was a small town lad who went on to win the steeplechase at the Indian National Games for 7 consecutive years! He broke the national record, a feat that was unsurpassed for 10 years! A series of life changing events however forced Paan Singh to give up athletics, pick up the gun and become the scourge of the infamous Chambal valley in central India. Filled with deep emotions and fateful twists, Paan Singh Tomar is a gritty, no holds barred action adventure set in the heart of India’s gangland, Chambal.

TehelkaTv is doing an interesting video series – Cinema and Me. We are embedding two video interviews here, Kundan Shah and Tigmanshu Dhulia talking about the Cinema that they grew up with and what it means to them now.

Tip – Manish Rathore

Like in Hollywood, this is the year of 2,3,4 in Bollywood too.  Murder 2 is still going strong at the box office, and now the first trailer of Don 2 is out. And it seems D2 is going to be exactly like the earlier Don. The film is directed by Farhan Akhtar and stars Shah Rukh Khan, Priyanka Chopra, Lara Dutta, Kunal Kapoor and Boman Irani.

Tigmanshu Dhulia is back, again. And we are again hoping that this time he will be back as the good ol’ Dhulia. Not the one who directed Shaagird. Even as his last film Paan Singh Tomar is yet to get a theatrical release, trailer of his new film Saheb Biwi Aur Gangster is out. It stars Jimmy Shergill, Randeep Hooda and Mahie Gill.

Remember Parvin Dabas? Yes, the actor is now director. And remember Preeti Jhangiani? She is now producer, and they are married. Here’s the trailer of directorial debut of Dabas, Sahi Dhandhe Galat Bande.

It’s been quite sometime since Tigmanshu Dhulia has been silently making movies but there is no news of the release dates. First Shagird, then Pan Singh Tomar and now he is busy with his next film. The first look of Dhulia’s Shagird has been released. It stars Nana Patekar, Mohil Ahlawat and kohl-eyed Anurag Kashyap.

And here’s the theatrical trailer…

This is one film we are eagerly waiting for – Tigmanshu Dhulia’s Paan Singh Tomar starring Irrfan Khan & Mahie Gill. Some on locations pics of the film are out on the internet. Check it out.

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And here is the official synopsis of the film…

Paan Singh Tomar is an untold true story of a simple farmer, a loyal soldier and a champion athlete who became one of India’s most dreaded dacoits!

Paan Singh was a small town lad who went on to win the steeplechase at the Indian National Games for 7 consecutive years! He broke the national record, a feat that was unsurpassed for 10 years! A series of life changing events however forced Paan Singh to give up athletics, pick up the gun and become the scourge of the infamous Chambal valley in central India. Filled with deep emotions and fateful twists, Paan Singh Tomar is a gritty, no holds barred action adventure set in the heart of India’s gangland, Chambal.

And if you are more interested, click on the play button to check out how Irrfan Khan trained for the role…

And there is some more! Click here to read a damn kickass interview of Irrfan Khan, done  by GQ’s Iain Ball, on the sets of Paan Singh Tomar.

anurag kashyapHis “khooni” cameo in Zoya Akhtar’s Luck By Chance got the loudest laughs. And he will soon be seen in a full fledged role of a UP gangster in Tigmanshu Dhulia’s Shaagird. And then there is Sudhir Mishra’s Tera Kya Hoga Johnny.

And it seems Kashyap’s keeda will continue for some more. He has been signed to act in Onir’s short film Abhimanyu, part of the five short films that Onir is planning on sexual abuse. Sanjay Suri, Rahul Bose, Shernaz Patel and Radhia Apte also star in it. Anurag being himself a victim of child sex abuse, has been very candid about it and has always raised his voice on the issue.

Whats more, we have heard that he is also writing one of the five stories and he isnt taking a single penny for his acting-writing. He is also contributing to the budget of the film as co-producer.

BTW, if you want to contribute to Onir’s film, click here to read more.