SIMRAN

simran-posterThe amount of attention the pre-release publicity of this film got whether for the right reason (The Female lead) or the wrong (The leading Lady’s Ex) in both the cases it did create a buzz about Simran.

The story is set in The US of America it looks into the life of 30 + Gujarati Divorcee girl – Prafull Patel played by Kangna Ranaut who works in the House-Keeping department of a leading hotel and lives with her parents: Father- a cribbing failed Gujarati Immigrant whose American dream never materialised and now lives off selling Gujarati Food items and a mother who is trying to match up to the squabbling of the Father and the Daughter.

On a trip to Vegas with her cousin she loses all her hard earned that she had saved to buy her own apartment on gambling and in order to recover the same she falls prey to the Loan Sharks who feeds her addiction by lending her instant cash and thus making her their debtor and it is this desperation that makes her rob the banks. The stealing bits seemed too simple but again this shows the American’s paranoia, the fear of getting hurt, Al Qaeda / ISIS and the use of the bombs that the bank employees seemed too eager to part with the cash.

The movie is a Kangna Film all the way she is in every scene and she rules in every bit of them. In one scene she tells her prospective suitor that she has a character flaw to which he replies it’s ok if she has had her shares of boyfriends and she replies that isn’t flaw that is art her flaw is that she is hooked onto gambling and stealing. These are the flaws that we see in people around us and I know someone who steals stuff from friends, shops and even from relatives admitted in the hospital. However in Praful’s case the gambling comes across not as an addiction but just one stray incident and the stealing is to feed this one incident.

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As an audience we root for her when she is goofy, when we see her desperation to have her own apartment, pay for her debts and ways to get out of the mess she has got herself into. There is a saying that we say “दूकान में कितना सामान है??” meaning whether someone is all talk and nothing to back that up with. In the case of Kangna in light of her bombastic interview दूकान में बहुत सामान है !!

The film is all about showcasing her talent and she doesn’t disappoint, however sincerely wish the film could match up to her efforts, it gets complacent in some portions. If you are Kangna fan you must watch it and if you belong to her opposite camp you deserve nothing but to watch Mohenjo Daro on a loop till the next Friday.

Raees

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This film is about the rise of a Robinhoodesque benevolent bootlegger from Gujarat, a celebration of the anti hero who finally succumbs to his deeds. Bootlegging is the worst kept secret of the only state in India which in papers is supposed to practice absolute Prohibition. This movie is about the nexus of the Bootelegger-Neta-Police-Consumer.

With a running time of around 144 min this one is fast paced, with great screenplay and has crisp and full on dialoguebaazi. What could have been definitely better was the music which kind of slows the pace and in some places feel forced, well the one wherein Ms. Leone features is definitely not the one I am talking about for that is for keeps.

Nawazuddin is brilliant as upright police officer who is perennially on the trail of Raees with his cat and mouse chase. Mohd. Zeeshan Ayyub who like his previous outings once again plays his brilliant supporting role. Mahira Khan is good but had nothing much to offer to be what our Indian actress couldn’t deliver.

raeesAfter the recent duds and becoming a kind of hate icon by the right wingers for his frank statements, SRK blows us with this amazing movie. It has the authentic feel of the period and the setting. It is like he is trying to prove a point to his detractors and he is successful in doing so. The whistles and the claps on his entry and dialogues proves he has a loyal fan base that includes me.

So like Raees says “दिन और रात तो लोगों के होते हैं, शेरों का तो ज़माना होता है”, go watch this movie because some bad Fridays don’t unmake a BADSHAH !!

Liquor Ban

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As was promised in his election manifesto, one of the first major decisions Nitish Kumar does after swearing in as the Chief Minister of Bihar for the fifth time around is to Ban alcohol from the state w.e.f 1st April 2016.

Seriously in this age and times is banning alcohol even practically possible??  Besides the obvious revenue loss for the state which is being pegged around Rs. 3500+ crores, how do you even ensure its strict compliance?

Coming from Udaipur, a city on the bordering the state of Gujarat where complete prohibition has been in place since the 1960’s, every day I see some of our brethren coming across the border just to enjoy a glass or two and what’s wrong in that ?? Intoxication in various forms has been always there since time immemorial and would continue for times to come. Like Harivansh Rai Bachhan has put in his iconic poem Madhushala:

बड़े बड़े परिवार मिटें यों, एक न हो रोनेवाला,

हो जाएँ सुनसान महल वे, जहाँ थिरकतीं सुरबाला,

राज्य उलट जाएँ, भूपों की भाग्य सुलक्ष्मी सो जाए,

जमे रहेंगे पीनेवाले, जगा करेगी मधुशाला

Why such a premium on absenteeism? Everything needs to be consumed in moderation and that applies to anything. Even in the state of Gujarat it is not too difficult to find one’s quota provided you know the right source and it is the worst kept secret of the state police. Every other day we read reports in local Udaipur Newspapers regarding trucks being caught and apprehended on their way to fulfill the demands of people living on the other side of the state border. And from what I hear these days the state govt. is little eased out in giving Individuals Permits and also relaxing the norms for people travelling to the state from outside.

So only thing this demand usually does is to start the production of illicit liquor and bootlegging, as per a report the start of the organized crime in Mumbai was in a direct relation to the prohibition in then the state of Bombay. Have seen families suffer because of ill effects of liquor but is it to do with an external factor or more to do with the psychological needs of that individual. If not alcohol there are other means of intoxication , especially in some of the areas of Rajasthan in terms of dependency on Bhaang , opium and its by-products , what about their ill effects??

To set the matter straight, alcohol isn’t my cup of tea not because I consider it bad but because I could never enjoy its taste, to each his own and who am I to disagree??

Bihar Waalon you have time to get tipsy till 31st March 2016 and then the neighboring states will  take care of your needs like we have been doing it for ours . To end by once again quoting Bachhan sb,

बैर बढ़ाते मस्जिद मन्दिर, मेल कराती मधुशाला…..