13 February 2016

Kung Fu Panda 3

In one word: Disappointing
In three words: Disappointing but adorable
In thirteen words: Disappointing but adorable, even that..... OH MY GOD, IS THAT A PANDA BABY?\



I have made no secret of the fact that I love Po and everything that comes with him. I don't know what it is.
Maybe the fact that both of us are fat and hate stairs?
Maybe because we have like 2% of faith in ourselves?
Maybe because we get impressed at anyone else having any skill?



Maybe because we are both adorable?
Eitherways, me and Po? We'd be besties. So understandably, I have been counting the days down to watch the 3rd instalment of this film.
Po and his father Li finally unite, much to the Goose Dad's anger and jealousy.



Meanwhile Shifu has been preparing his retirement and makes Po take over the teachings. Which he sucks at. Shifu has also been learning chi and throughout the rest of the movie, you need to take a shot everytime they say chi to make this movie fun. Don't get me wrong, there are bits that are hilarious, to the point where I had to pause because I was laughing so hard. But other than those few lines and the scores of unbelievably adorable there is very little to the movie. The creators seem to have gotten either lazy or just lost interest in the whole thing. The dynamic between Panda dad and Goose dad is funny and cute, but this movie when the same way that Despicable Me 2 went. Just cute enough to last you through the movie, but not enough to ever watch again.

In a good turn, the other characters of the Five do have more lines than they have ever had before. And there is a Master Chicken, who I need in my life, because he is hilarious.




 I think the failing point was the lack of a good villain. Kai was ordinary at best and really, the whole vengeance by gating chi thing was very dull.



Which broke my heart just a bit because I was looking forward to this movie so much.
You can watch it if you want, I mean, it won't hurt. It just won't be the best.

The Good: "I always knew, I wasn't eating to my full potential"
The Bad: It burns me to say this, but lets just let this be the last one in the series. 

Deadpool

















Let's call a spade, a spade. I am someone who lives and breathes sarcasm, much to my mother's disappointment. So when I see someone else being sarcastic and getting paid for it, I regain my hope.



Deadpool is one of the most awaited films of the year. And I woke up at the crack of dawns ass to go watch it. And lord, it was well worth it.
Ryan Reynolds, who looks SO old is a mercenary with a twisted sense of humour.
He goes about doing his business of being a hipster hitman, until the day he meets Hooker Vanessa. Who shares the twisted sense of humour and a voracious sexual appetite. With a montage of their, ahem, prophylactic activities, years pass and the two fall in love and move in together. Pause the montage and Reynolds proposes to Hooker Vanessa. And they are just oh, so happy. And being the sad, alone person that I am, I wanted to hate them. But boom! Reynolds has late-stage cancer and he takes it with a bag full of salt. Hooker on the other hand, is all ready to fight the shit out of it. Reynolds meets super mysterious guy who offers to cure him and give him abilities that all men want. After much consideration, 3 seconds, he agrees. AND LEAVES HOOKER VANESSA IN THE MIDDLE OF THE NIGHT. Like, I get goodbyes are hard. BUT YOU DO NOT LEAVE THE LOVE OF YOUR LIFE ASLEEP AND WALK AWAY. Even if it is for her benefit.


Enter super creepy basement type lab with like a hot and masculine Nicholas Hoult, called Ajax/Francis. Also, he has a weird thing about his name, to the point where he keeps yelling "What's my name?" as a taunt. Now, I am not creative but buddy, is that the best you can come up with?
Reynolds is injected with magic serum that activates his latent mutantness. But he needs a dose of adrenaline to get there. Cue montage of various torture experiments being conducted on the poor thing.


He eventually escapes and vows revenge. But he is all disfigured (honestly though, he just looks like a burn victim and thats kinda mean) and looks like a human version of Fantastic Four's The Thing. He stalks Hooker Vanessa from afar, while honing his super skill of indestructibility and mad reflexes. Oh, and kills like a whole bunch of people to get to Francis.



Who then kidnaps Hooker Vanessa, now Stipper/Bartender Vanessa and uses her a bait for Reynolds.
Cue big fight scene, where the good guy wins and gets the girl.



Why does all this sound, familiar you say? Because this is literally the most overused story in the world! I swear, even Bollywood is tired of this plot.
The silver lining is how they show this story. With really clever and well-timed flashbacks for one. And a hilarious voice over that often breaks the fourth wall. Actually he does that physically as well. And it is so brilliant. I would say that the acting is good, but in all honesty Reynolds spends about 80% of the movie in the suit. So they could have had a dog in there, and Reynolds voice over that and no one would be wiser.
What wins in this movie is the incredible writing, the fantastic screenplay which is amplified with the unbelievable special effects. And let's be honest, the superb direction. Am I overselling it? Nope. It really is that good. It honestly shakes up the tired way that Marvel has been churning out superhero movies.



Is the story good? No. But lord, even the credit roll is funny. Both the beginning and end ones. For ex: With great thanks to (with tongue) was a category. The writers have done a great job of making fun of EVERYthing including Reynolds himself. Stop reading this and watch the damn movie already.

The Good: This is one of the most quotable movie so far. "Don't leave me with slightly less angry Rosie O'Donnell."
The Bad: I fear this may have peaked the careers of both Reynolds and Tim Miller.
The Great: Betty White's review of the film.

9 February 2016

Saala Khadoos

I like R. Madhavan. Honest, I do. He is unappreciated but good. Even if he has to produced his own films to get movies.

I love sports dramas. I love boxing. I feel like my reaction to Southpaw proves that. So me and my violence loving princess hop, skipped and ran along to watch the new boxing film.
And shockingly it wasn't all that bad. Not great either.

Adi is a big man, who yells everything. EVERYTHING. He is an official woman's boxing coach in Delhi, but because the main dude is a tiny egotistical man, he exacts revenge on Adi and sends him to Chennai. Where he meets the star Lux (Laxmi), who does not impress him. Instead her younger sister Madhi, who I spent the entire movie calling Mati, shows some fire. Because she is unruly and also yells EVERYTHING. So of course Adi feels a kinship with her and proceeds to throw money at her and her poor fish monger family until Madhi agrees.

 Cut to montage of her training. She becomes good but not disciplined enough, just yet. She looses a match on purpose and Adi gives up on her.
Cut to montage of her being sad. She apologizes, I think, but comes back to training and is all ready to fight in the national selections.
Meanwhile Lux gets jealous of her sister getting all the attention. She hatches a scheme to get rid of the competition.
Cut to montage of Madhi falling in love with Adi, who she calls master throughout, so maybe there is some latent BDSM at play there?

We reach national selection where Madhi confesses her love to Adi who laughs it off. Madhi is undeterred and threatens to lose the match if he doesn't love her. In training Lux accidentally/on purpose sabotages her sister's future by almost breaking her hand. Madhi still fights and looses. Shocker. Adi gets pissed, because he thinks its because of her love for him and tells her to get lost. While Lux wins and gets selected.
Cut to montage of Madhi being heart broken. Creepy Head/Villain who sleeps with the young girls in the promise of success. Which is also something that Lux may have indulged in. Creepy Head invites Madhi to a match in Delhi and makes her fight against a Russian who is in a different weight category. Madhi looses. And then he attempts to make her smile by making her go down on him. Lovely, yes? She hurts in some physical way and he gets his revenge by framing her for some theft of association money. She calls Adi who rescues her.
Cut to montage of re training.

You may sense that there are several patterns of montages in this movie. The storyline while well constructed is very shallowly dealt with.Just touched on the surface. Like it is mentioned but thats the extent of it.
Madhi continues to be in love with Adi but now is all like 'I need ta win, bitches' Which she does. And CreepyHead attempts to claim that it was his doing. She knocks him out and koala bear hugs Adi in the middle of the stadium.
Roll credits.
The movie is cute, funny at times, and a one time watch. There is an inordinate amount of yelling in the movie and like weird three sentence songs. But you can watch the movie once and not hate life.

The Good: Women in bollywood can do more than dance, lip-sync and marry.
The Bad: It just sort of ended. With the Adi and Madhi thing as a loose end.

Room

I read this book about 2 years or so ago, because I went through this pretentious phase where I was reading only Pulitzer and Man Booker prize winners. Oh, wait! Sorry, no. Still going through the pretentious phase.

       
The story is gripping. A girl who got kidnapped and stored in a shed for 7 years has only her 5 year old son to keep her company other than when the kidnapper comes and pays her visit. The new and different part about this was that the entire story is written and told from the perspective of the kid. His entire world and knowledge is the room. The four walls, his mother and the few things that they have. He knows no other way of life. Kind of like the kids in Mama. And then his grand escape and how he has to deal with the world is beautiful. Understanding that there are other people, dogs, trees that exist. The difference between cartoons and tv shows. The sort of we take for granted but this child is seeing and understanding for the first time.

The book starts of quite well, and goes quite good till about 5 mins after the escape, after that it does get a bit draggy and boring. The book does tend to focus heavily on the kid's dependence on the room and the safety he felt there. Ironic. The book version also ends rather closurelessly. So I wasn't blown away. The movie was a different case altogether.
What I don't understand is how the kid hasn't been nominated for the Oscar instead of Brie Larson. Don't get me wrong, she has done a great job as well, especially seeing as the last time I saw her was as Abed's girlfriend in Community. The movie gives you chills. Honestly.
The filming is done spectacularly well, especially seeing as the first half is filmed entirely in a teeny room. And the acting of everyone involved in the movie is so good. Even the dog is so good. Ugly. But good.

Most movies in this kind of vein are only till the escape. The novelty of this flim is how they deal with the aftermath of the escape. The way that life just has to go on. The way that even though that you were repeatedly raped by a crazy man and he is the father of your child, you still have to wake up the next day and watch the new episode of Ellen.

Did this movie blow me away? No, but only because I knew the entire story thanks to the book. My mother on the other hand is still blown away.
Please go watch this one. Sometimes betting on Oscar movies can be a gamble. Like Silver Linings Playbook, do not understand the thing with that.

The Good: The spectacular acting of the kid. Like come on man!
The Bad: A disappointing score that does nothing for the film.

Airlift

This movie seriously made me question my standards of watching a film.



Let's look at it conceptually. They took a slightly anti-hero guy, put him in a situation that is something that the world is facing right now, tense times and all, far too much adversity, yet the anti-hero becomes the unwitting hero and rises above and wins. Throw some patriotism in there, and ding-ding-ding, we have a winner!
So basically, this movie is fine. To hear about. To watch, however is a different story all together.
Akshay Kumar plays a wealthy and stereotypically offensive Punjabi businessman in Kuwait. He makes the monies and his wife makes the babies. Don't worry though, they have a maid to take care of the child.
The movie is set in the 90's, so there is a LOT of weird sexism and misogynistic values at play, that we are just mean to ignore the whole way.

Kuwait has the martial overthrow, that still has an impact to this century. The Iraqi army takes over Kuwait, but Saddam says "No killing Indians." So Akshay Kumar and Nimrat Kaur a.k.a The Worst Wife In The World are safe for the time being. Sine Akshay Kumar is rich and hence, invincible he decides to drive down the main road in the city, while sobbing and looking at the chaos around him. His window are also rolled down, and I really don't get how no one shot him even once. He meets a Major of Saddam's army, who assures him safety.
Now I seriously hope, no Iraqi ever watches this movies, because the man playing the Major is just so wrong. I genuinely think that the casting people went out in the streets,. grabbed the first guy they saw and asked, "Can you do any accent other than North Indian?" He said yes, and now we have a clearly Malyali man in a strange nasal accent playing an Iraqi man. It was so ridiculous, that at one point my poor ears over heard a hushed conversation in the theatre about why Saddam was making random South Indians his military leaders.

The first half of the film is dedicated to showing Akshay Kumar helping out about 1 and a half lakh Indians who have become refugees in Kuwait. Let it be known throughout that the movie only maybe 1000 people are shown at one time. Even things like their food, and the number of buses required for them.
Like the movie is so logically inconsistent, it is alarming. Do they think that we would all be so over bowled by the beauty of Akshay Kumar that we wont question how they somehow managed to hide food for 1 and a half lakh people for a couple days while the Iraqi army was raiding their stores?
The first half also comprises of a horrible Nimrat who literally opposes Akhay at EVERYTHING he does. And places her trust in the Malyali Major instead.

The second half sees a rapid turnabout where she randomly quotes Punjabi lyrics to Akshay claiming to never leave him.
The movie is shallow, and really quite illogically made. They seem to want us to believe that 1 and a half lakh people travelled 1092 kms in half a day. And I get that it is Kuwait and that oil is like not a big issue, but where did their petrol come from? What, they dug a hole in the desert?
There is also a super emotional scene at the end where the Jordanian airport puts up the flag of India and everyone gets teary.
But why does it do that? Like if it was the embassy or something like that, it would have still been a passable explanation. But the airport? Really?

The filming and shots aren't actually that bad. And I bet if you were the mute the monstrosity, it would actually be nice to look at. I am of course choosing to ignore the piles of terrible CGI. Nimrat Kaur is actually a good looking woman who should continue acting. She actually looks age appropriate for these Old Man Actors.
Don't watch the movie. It'll anger you. The ones who tell you otherwise have clearly forgotten the pain of the first half and gotten swept away in the badly portrayed patriotism.

The Good: Brings to light the sad plight of refugees for ignorant people.
The Bad: Makes a mockery of it and charges you money to watch it.