The Big Hearted Returns

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Dilwale
Direction: Rohit Shetty
Cast: Shah Rukh Khan, Kajol, Varun Dhawan & Kriti Sanon

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Plot premise:
Raj is a humble car mechanic who helps the needy. He also keeps away from unnecessary fights and quarrels. His ambition is to bring up his brother, Veer. A flashback shows that Raj was actually once a Don named Kaali in Bulgaria. (Inspiration : Baasha – 1995 &  Old Telugu Movies)

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It’s a long date with SRK that occasionally stumble on the edge of boredom, but it certainly isn’t all wrong. Parts of Dilwale, propelled by a spirit of inspired lunacy holds this no-holds-barred action comedy in good town.

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If only it had enough substance to sustain its momentum all the way to the very end, it would probably have been far more fun to watch.

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If you hang in there and do not allow the many distractions and diversions along the way throw you off road, you might find yourself getting into the swing of things, especially in the first half.

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Some of the scenes might seem rather unnecessary and overstretched. Dilwale delivers exactly what you would expect from a Rohit Shetty film: runaway entertainment; that has a crowd-pleaser illuminated all over it.

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The director comes up with a movie that has all the tried-and-tested ingredients of the romance genre that runs somewhat low on velocity at times in his brand of filmmaking.

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SALT MANGO TREE: 3/5
SALT (chemistry): SRK and Kajol.
MANGO (what’s fresh?): Breathtaking locales (Iceland and Bulgaria) & Kriti Sanon.
TREE (strength): Shah Rukh’s mega-stardom & Varun’s enthusiasm.

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Winners & Losers

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Happy New Year
Direction: Farah Khan
Cast: Shahrukh Khan, Deepika Padukone, Abhishek Bachchan, Boman Irani, Vivaan Shah, Sonu Sood and Jackie Shroff

happy-new-year-posterThere has at all times been this dispute of the common-sense and the no common sense. The inspirational and the masala. It is vibrant since previous years that the so called “No brainers” rule the box office when it comes to Bollywood.

Be it the Ajay series (of the likes Golmaal, Singham), Salman series (of the likes Ready, Dabangg), Akshay series (of the likes Rowdy Rathore, Housefull)… Yes & the largest of them all till date Dhoom 3.

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So what’s mutual here in this Ocean’s eleven indianised? They all are amusing while it lasts, but it might not leave the viewer with the sense of having watched a film that is truly exceptional.

There are two kinds of people…

One; those who correspond to Shah Rukh Khan & Two: those who share the same amount of distaste to Shah Rukh Khan.

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This latest entry into the Blockbuster-100crore club-No brainer (all the same) is only n only  for Shah Rukh fans. All those Anti SRK who walk into this Farah Khan gala will feel mixed up and will gather the final joke of Happy New Year is on you, the viewer. They will obviously bring home more disgust for this longtime Super Star of Indian Cinema.

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Disagreeing to them are the loyal fan base of King Khan, who hanged on to see their idol; his trademark dialogues, his hyped 8-12 packs, his charming romantics & his now iconic standing pose. The movie originates, develops and finishes with Khan. Adding to the fun is the ever loving Boman, the innocent Sonu, the chilled out Vivaan, the beautiful and funny Deepika & the surprise package of the movie; BachanJr. Abhishek is at his comic best, perhaps a show that averages with Bol Bachchan. Suggesting a road BachanJr should dome alongside more.

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There is nothing wide of the mark with Happy New Year if all that you are eyeing for is a good old timepass, entertainment & Shah Rukh Khan. The film grips your attention till the end credits. Happy New Year offers Shah Rukh fans ample reasons to stay inside the hall. Happy New Year is a film which all solid Shah Rukh fans will force you to see as it has all the basics of the popular Shah Rukh films.

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SALT MANGO TREE: 2/5
SALT (chemistry): Farah Khan teams up back again with Shah Rukh Khan.
MANGO (what’s fresh?): Jackie Shroff excels in a villainous role.
TREE (strength): Its grand, beautiful, exotic locations across Dubai & all the SRK moves which fans love.

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Brave Heart takes away Bride – 2

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Cast: Deepika Padukone & Shah Rukh Khan
Direction: Rohit Shetty

Wannakum,
Chennai Express begins with the famous train sequence of DDLJ (1995) and this time it is Deepika who needs the hero’s hand. Chennai Express can also be called the “DDLJ in Rohit Shetty style!” as its storyline has assimilated the best shots from DDLJ.

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The story is a riot of hilarious, romantic and action sequences with some interesting drama peppered and pickled in. An extravagant trip with a plot so thin, it could give a paper dosa a run for its money. Chennai Express warms up pretty quickly and delivers exactly what you would expect from a Rohit Shetty film: runaway entertainment. Children are going to love it.

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What is most unusual about Chennai Express is that at least half its spoken lines are delivered in Tamil. Yet comprehension is never a problem, thanks to a screenplay that tides over the need to explain every dialogue in chaste Hindi.

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Chennai Express is about a Rahul’s journey from Mumbai with the task of taking the ashes of his grandfather to Rameshwaram. Along the way after he gives a hand in DDLJ style to the daughter of a local don. Then begins a saga of running, fighting, running…and again fighting and then finally, in Shah Rukh’s own words, everything gets all right.

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SALT MANGO TREE: 3/5
SALT (chemistry): The Shah Rukh -Deepika pair’s camaraderie results in funny situations while makes their chemistry more compelling.

MANGO (what’s fresh?): The exotic locations down South. Seriously, cinematographer Dudley with supporting VFX has captured the Southern landscape in its abundance, making nature lovers fall in love with the lower reaches of the Indian subcontinent.

TREE (strength): The facets of Crowd puller Shah Rukh Khan, in his zany act throughout the film & the angry khan towards the end. On the other side, Deepika Padukone deserves a special mention for her Hindi with Tamil accents.

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Till My Last Breath

Cast: Shah Rukh Khan, Katrina Kaif and Anushka Sharma.
Direction: Yash Chopra

Yash Chopra’s final film, “Jab Tak Hai Jaan” bombed my expectation. It did not pull the right chain anywhere. Question is wasn’t there any other plotline for the movie. The plot of the movie is thinner than my hair strand. I didn’t buy into the story, but I bought into the genuine show from all three – Shah Rukh, Katrina and Anushka. They were exceptional & dominant.

Why will an Army man’s documentary; featuring him singing folksy Punjabi numbers in London interest us. It is very daring of late Yashji to assume, Samar’s willing acceptance of a fate thrust upon him by Meera (Katrina); in a childish promise to god, would work.

A series of unimpressive story twists, a long-drawn-out flashback involving memory loss, pacts with God, a random bomb on a train , the waiter becomes a major in the army – a bomb-disposal expert, no less.

Shah Rukh is easily Hindi cinema’s most dashing army officer; he finally smashes his no-kissing rule. Would you believe that in a delightful career spanning over two decades, the man has never kissed a lead actress in any of his films? Even though running for previously committed ladies is his forte! And King Khan is back there once again.

This film has all the elements you would want in a Yash Chopra film – gorgeously shot locations in the UK and Kashmir, lavish songs and three naturally gracious lead characters who struggle bravely against their individual commitments.

Set in present-day Leh – Major Samar Anand of the Indian army’s bomb disposal squad at work knows no fear. He defuses IEDs without donning a bomb suit. He is known as “the man who cannot die”. Cut to “Done Done” London!, Samar Anand is a struggling Indian immigrant. He makes a living by strumming a guitar and singing folksy Punjabi numbers at tourist spots and doing odd jobs as a snow-cleaner outside a church, a sales boy in a fish market and a waiter in a restaurant. He falls in love with Meera, daughter of a wealthy NRI businessman (Anupam Kher). Circumstances keep them apart, a heartbroken Samar leaves for India and joins the army. In Kashmir valley, He meets another pretty girl Akira Rai (Anushka Sharma), an aspiring documentary filmmaker on an assignment to record the bomb expert and his team at work.

The music and the background score is overwhelmingly positive for the film, composed by A.R. Rahman, who teamed up with Yash Chopra for the first time.

Jab Tak Hai Jaan is very much jumbled. But like it or not, it is the swansong of one of the defining directors of the Indian film industry and you cannot help but think of Yash Chopra’s legacy as you watch his last film, which honestly requires enormous patience too.

Lots of courage & miracles in need for this not so simple love story, of a man, who died every day, every moment for his love.

SALT MANGO TREE: 2.5/5
SALT (chemistry): The best parts are undoubtedly the scenes between Shah Rukh Khan and Anushka Sharma.
MANGO (what’s fresh?): Gorgeously shot locations in Kashmir. Shah Rukh finally smashes his no-kissing rule.
TREE (strength): Yash Chopra’s legacy.