Monthly Archives

March 2018

Introducing an artiste (Day 1296)

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He was only 3 years old when his father Dhaval Mehta knew that his son was special. All he needed was a crayon in hand and Dev utilized every surface in the house to draw, sketch and paint. It began with the floor as he crawled, then as he grew taller it spread to the house walls, later bed sheet and when nothing was available body parts.

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Dhaval Mehta decided that that will be no regulations at home, his son could paint and sketch whenever and wherever he wants. He got him a box full of colors and when Dev was 5 years old introduced him to a canvas, to oil paint and Dev held the brush in his hand like he was born to paint. His very first painting titled “From Tempest to Calmness” was a flight to the imagination and there was no looking back.

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@bhawanasomaaya

Movie Review: Pari, Too much blood and no content Day 1295

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Film: Pari

Date: 04.03.2018

Director: Prosit Roy

Cast: Anushka Sharma, Prarambrata Chatterjee, Rajat Kapoor, Ritabhari Chakraborty, Mansi Multani

Ratings: 2 stars

 It is not often that a leading lady in films starts a production house, Anushka Sharma in association with Prerna Arora launched Clean Slate Films three years ago and has since then been making genre specific, moderate budget films.

In NH 10/ 2015 Anushka portrayed crime on the highway. Phulwari/ 2017 told about a tormented soul and this year she presents Pari. It is evident from the poster/trailers of the film that this is not a story about angels who guard paradise but about evil spirits who breathe on the planet.

Inspired from true incidents occurred in Bangladesh and supported by newspaper reportage, this is a first on the practice of that time.

On a rainy night Arnab/ Parambratta Chatterjee encounters an orphan Rukhsana/ Anushka Shama and offers her shelter in his home and Rukhsana continues to be Arnab’s guest longer than intended.

The biggest problem with the film in my opinion is that the director assumes that the audience is familiar with the backstory and does not bother to elaborate as a result there is a lot of artificial intrigue but no clarity on content or on why Rajat Kapoor does what he does!

It is unusual that Arnab lives in a narrow lane in Kolkatta and survives a monstrous secret without any curiosity/ questions from his neighborhood.

The negatives are all the clichés- the forever engulfing darkness, unnecessary scenes of blood, overgrown nails, satanic verses and eerie shadows in black hoods breathing heavily. We are informed that the evil spirit delivers her baby in a month and the climax is straight out of the fifties.

The positives are the performances, Chatterjee is refreshing and Sharma sparkles despite a poor storytelling. Her courage to always travel new terrain and embrace versatility is admirable. She has proved over the years that her films can be disappointing but never Anushka Sharma!

Bhawana Somaaya/ @bhawanasomaaya

Mumbai becomes home (Day 1294)

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Working since the age of five Sridevi was a natural and as decade went by thought of Mumbai city and Hindi films as her home. Tired of being parked in Centaur Hotel for months at stretch for shootings she purchased her home in Lokhandwala designed by a close friend. I remember visiting her newly designed home one late evening for a cover story.  When I arrived the house was buzzing with haunting melody, she revealed the music was composed by a 27-year old boy who will soon be grabbed by the Hindi film industry. She was referring to AR Rehman.

The 1990s was a challenging decade for the actress, her link up with her producer Boney Kapoor, her marriage and the controversies, her pregnancy. I remember visiting her in the hospital. In fact, I suggested the name Jhanvi inspired from her film Judai and two years later, her second daughter Khushi.

 

To be continued…

@bhawanasomaaya