Movie Review: LoveYatri

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Film: Love Yatri

Date: 05 October 2018

Director: Abhiraj Minawala

Cast: Ayush Sharma, Warris Hussain, Ronit Roy, Ram Kapoor

The film was originally titled Love Raatri but on the objection from the CBFC the title has been altered to Love Yaatri.

Sushurat / Ayush Sharma lives with his parents in Baroda and has no interest in studies and comes alive during Navratri festival because dancing garba is his passion and dreams of launching a Garba Academy someday.

Michelle/ Warina Hussain is doing her masters in London and visiting her uncle for Navratri where she happens to meet Sushurat in a Navratri celebration and they become friends.

He takes her sight-seeing, they romance, they quarrel and part ways.

There’s nothing novel about the plot and that’s because there’s nothing novel about love.  And yet so many love stories succeed because they engage us in their unique process of finding love.

Unfortunately, there are no real reasons why the lead pair gets attracted to each other, no real reasons for them to get attached either. The girl has come to spend quality time with her extended family but they are eliminated from the narrative until it is time for conflict.

The best sequence in the film is the seasonal montages after the lovers are separated. The most hilarious moments are when Ronit Roy invites Ayush Sharma to accompany him on a giant wheel ride in Baroda and then again in UK.

The biggest problem with Love Yaatri is that it fails to exploit the grandeur of the festival. Except for a brief shopping of costumes, there are no glimpses of the elaborate perpetrations and tradition attached to the nine nights.  The garba venue remains static without any alteration in lighting.

With better screenplay, music, and choreography the film had the potential to engage youngsters but unfortunately, that does not happen.

The best performance in the film comes from Ram Kapoor followed by Ronit Roy.  Ayush Sharma is vastly influenced by Salman Khan and it is evident in the way he walks and smiles. He makes a sincere debut but needs to work on his arched eyebrows.

I rate Love Yaatri with 2 stars


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Reckitt Benckiser, world’s leading consumer Health and Hygiene Company, raised the benchmark of its flagship Dettol Harpic Banega Swachh India (BSI) Campaign to drive bigger transformational change with a special focus on reaching a Healthy and Hygienic India by 2019.

This will be achieved by concerted efforts targeted under five key pillars of the campaign that includes Sanitation – making India open defecation free; Hand Wash – inculcating regular hand washing practices; Air Pollution – encouraging plantation drives to help clean the air we breathe; Mere10Guz – keeping your 10 yards clean and Health – key to our future and a progressive nation.

Taking forward last year’s agenda of a holistic approach to Swachhta by promoting three key steps – Swachh Zameen, Swachh Hawa, and Swachh Pani, the campaign urges the common man to keep “Mere10Guz” – 10 yards around him sanitary and unpolluted by taking small steps in that direction.

The target of the Hygiene and Sanitation curriculum is to reach 6 lakh Madrasas and Gurukuls a total of 7 crore school kids across multiple states in India. Additionally, the Dettol E-Curriculum will reach over 4 lakh schools by 2019.



Rani Mukerji’s much loved film Hichki will release in Hong Kong on November 8 !

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The film has been titled 我的破嗝Miss (My Extraordinary Teacher) for its Hong Kong release. Rani’s performance as Naina Mathur, a school teacher dealing with an involuntary nervous system disorder, Tourette Syndrome, has been widely lauded by audiences and critics alike across the world. Her brilliant performance has seen her sweep awards and accolades this year.

Hichki has also been receiving worldwide acclaim and honors. It received a standing ovation at the Shanghai International Film Festival (SIFF) and Indian Film Festival of Melbourne(IFFM).

Manikarnika: The Queen Of Jhansi Teaser To Be Released On Gandhi Jayanti

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The teaser of Manikarnika: The Queen Of Jhansi will be released on  Gandhi Jayanti – a day when we celebrate the indomitable spirit of freedom fighters like Mahatma Gandhi; Rani Laxmi Bai has been one of the first, fiercest warrior queens, who fought for independence against the British army – the makers felt this would be the apt day to launch the teaser of the film that captures the historic life story of Rani Lakshmi Bai.

Produced by Zee Studios and Kamal Jain, Manikarnika-The Queen of Jhansi, directed by Radha Krishna Jagarlamudi, is slated to release on January 25, 2019.

Govinda admits that he wasn’t very good at romantic scenes. 

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Govinda, who is known as the king of comedy, will be seen in the upcoming comedy movie FRYDAY which also stars Varun Sharma.

During the promotions of FRYDAY at an acting based reality show, Govinda said that there was a phase in his career when he was not good at doing romantic scenes in films. The host asked him a question about difficult scenes in movies. The cator replied, “I was not very good at romantic scenes. In my very first film Ilzaam, there was a dance sequence where I was supposed to run and get close with my co-star Neelam, but I could not do it. I started shivering and felt feverish.”

After this incident the choreographer of the song, Saroj Khan asked him if he had ever had a girlfriend. “I said no. She smiled and said she would teach me how to romance on screen.”

Presented by Inbox Pictures Pvt Ltd, Produced by Sajid Qureshi and Co-Produced by PVR Pictures. FRYDAY is directed by Abhishek Dogra and will release on 12th October 2018.

Movie Review: Pataakha

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Film: Pataakha

Date: 28.09.2018

Director: Vishal Bharadwaj

Cast: Sanya malhotra, Radhika Madan, Sunil Grover, Vijay Raaz

Rekha Bharadwaj produced and Vishal Bharadwaj directed Pataakha is based on writer Charan Singh Pathik’s short story Do Behnein, about two sisters who look for a trigger to get violent with each other.

The village thrives on their wrestling matches at school and home because it is the only mode of entertainment for all. Father/ Vijay Raaz cannot fathom why Barki/ Radhika Madan and Chutki/ Sanya Malhotra erupt like a volcano at the mere sight of each other. Nor can the girls but both fantasize that marriage and separation from each other will bring paradise but does that happen?

The negatives of the film are one that the story does not appeal in present times. The duration appears longer than two hours. Then the frequent wrestling matches after a point become overbearing.

There’s not a single soft moment or a glimpse of affection between the siblings in their growing years and no insight from the writer for their exaggerated animosity, as a result when both suffer psychological disorders post separation it is highly unconvincing.

Even the metaphor of the warring nations India and Pakistan according to me is highly misplaced.

The positives are the performances. Vijay Raaz as the single father of the quarreling girls wins your heart with a restrained performance. As the supporter of the family, Sunil Grover is thoroughly entertaining. Radhika Madan makes a competent debut as the older sister obsessed with dairy but the best performance comes from the Danagal girl -Saina Malhotra who shines as Chutki through all her phases!

Two thoughts come to your mind when you emerge from the cinema hall. One, not all short stories have the potential to make a feature and two, Sadat Manto Hasan was right, Literature has to change with time.

I rate Pataakha with 2 stars.

Bhawana Somaaaya

Bachchan, Thugs and more

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Amitabh Bachchan seen every night on Kaun Banega Crorepati celebrated the trailer release of Thugs of Hindostan with the team and is gearing up for his next Jhund in Nagpur directed by Nagraj Manjule of Sairat fame.

Jhund inspired from the life of Vijay Barse, founder of slum soccers. Mr. Bachchan plays a professor who channelizes the street kids to build a soccer team. The street kids have undergone training in acting and will do a workshop with the superstar before they begin rolling.

A candidate on the KBC show told Bachchan that while the youngsters lack the energy to work  for more than five hours how come he  has been working tirelessly for so many years without complaining to which Bachchan replied ‘Kya kare paapi pet ka sawal hai’



Impact of Partition

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G5A, the wonderful space in Laxmi Mills Lane, Shakti Mills Estate, Mahalaxmi has over the months become a favorite hangout for both the intellectuals and the art world. Today at 6.30 in the evening Literature Live brings a new perspective to the trauma caused by the partition of India into two countries. An estimated 5,00,000 people were killed, and millions displaced.

When a country goes through crisis its countrymen take a lifetime to get over the tragedy which is why seven decades have not reduced the scars of what happened in 1947 however as the likes of as Dr. Sanjeev Jain, Professor of Psychiatry at the National Institute of Mental Health & Neurosciences, and Alok Sarin, Clinical Psychiatrist at Sitaram Bhatia Institute of Science & Research, release their anthology The Psychological Impact of the Partition in India there is hope for the country.

 Dr Guneeta Singh Bhalla who founded the 1947 Partition Archives (an oral history project collecting/ preserving first-hand accounts of the Partition in video interviews across San Francisco Bay Area), the archive has now grown to over 3000 interviews collected from nine countries including India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, United States, United  Kingdom among others.

Writer and film-maker Paromita Vohra has agreed to chair the event.


Taanaji rolls

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According to Ajay Devgan he had planned it correctly. First the promotion of Ella Helicopter then the release and as the frenzy settles down he announces his next film and starts shooting but Dada/ Pradip Sarkar director of Ella got diagnosed with dengue and the entire schedule went haywire.

The Devgans had the option of getting Ella’s post-production done by another filmmaker but Ajay and Kajol chose the difficult option of waiting for Dada. They put the promotion of Ella on hold and postponed the release by a few weeks.

In the meantime Taanaji: The Unsung Warrior who fought for Chhatrapati Shivaji has gone on the floor today at a suburban studio as scheduled.  Directed by Om Raut and produced by Ajay Devgn’s ADFL with Bhushan Kumar’ T-series will release on 22 November 2019.


Divya Datta Birthday

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Waiting for the lift outside BigFM studio I bump into the versatile actor Divya Dutta who is here to celebrate her birthday on air with her fans.
In jeans hair tied up Ina bun on top of her head, she is almost unrecognizable from her avatars on the screen.
Last week I saw her in a cameo in Nandita Das’s Manto and marveled at her projection of the character.
And now, an hour after our meet at the studio I listen to her interview with RJ and fall down laughing. Divya calls herself lazy Libran and says on Sundays she is so lethargic that her family complains that they feel sleepy just watching her.
Doesn’t seem so at all watching you on the screen Divya.