Saturday, August 02, 2014

[Movie] Vikramadityan...

Watched Vikramadityan few days ago with friends. We had been quite eager to watch the movie [us gals wanted to watch it for a whole different reason, it featured Dulquer Salman and well, for the boy I guess it was a new mallu movie that promised to be good]. Tickets were booked [at Inox, Chandra Metro Mall, Virugambakkam] and we were quite excited as we headed to the theater [ yes , the prospect of seeing Dulquer on screen once again was enough to have our adrenaline rushing]... 

Directed by Lal Jose
Produced by Lal Jose & Mohan Nambiar
Written by Iqbal Kuttipuram
Starring         Dulquer Salmaan, Namitha Pramod, Unni Mukundan
Music by         Bijibal

The movie is all about three people, two guys and a girl- all of who grew up together, were the best of friends and yet life took them in different directions... The two guys - one cop one crook, the girl head over heels in love with the crook but the cop has offered to give her a life/a future. The movie opens with Vikraman asking the Deepika to marry him. But she is pining for Adithyan and shoots out one last email. The day after there is a bit of commotion in town and she see Adhityan beating up a bunch of guys. Dressed in Sabarimalai attire [ black veshti and shirt] he carries nothing but a backpack and bunks with his friends [does not go home]. The entire movie plays out like a flashback... The plot unfolds with police constable Vasudev Shenoy (Anoop menon) talking to Lakshmi (Lena) who he loves about how his mother is against their marriage and will hopefully change her mind soon. But, before that can happen she meets conman Kunjunni (Santhosh Keezhattoor), who pretends to be a cop. Shenoy then marries a girl of his family's choice (Charmila) and gets on with life. Soon after both the couples are blessed with baby boys[ on the same day, minutes apart]. Shenoy names his son Vikraman (Unni Mukundan) and Kunjunni's son is called Adithyan (Dulquer Salmaan).

As the boys grow up, one day Kunjunni gets caught for robbing a jewellery store and is dragged out on the street by Shenoy. Adithyan is disappointed that his father who he looked up to turned out to be a crook and subsequently, the father committs suicide. The boys become teenagers and even though they are close friends, there is enemity between them,a  constant comparison and battle of who is better. Both the boys train to be cops, but Shenoy plays a mean game and convinces Lakshmi to keep Adithyan out of the game and that he had indeed tried to smuggle some narcotics [ which was actually done by a friend of his].. He gets angry at his mom and leaves home to return after years. His mother longs for the day when he will return and forgive her. 

Time flies, there are little battles between the boys, but it is Deepika's father who is a doctor who helps Adityan gain focus in life and change for the better. As the movie unfolds slowly, we watch the boys tussle, emotions run amock and typical family drama all over.... As the movie reaches the climax, it is time forVikraman to take charge as SI on the very day his father retires. There are top officials coming to congratulate them and one among them is the sub collector [ hold on to your seats... nivin pauly is the cutie pie].. Adithyan and his mother also come in a car to congratulate them. While Adithyan tries to have a word with Shenoy, he is kicked out and that is when we all learn the truth behind "what was Adithyan upto during the years he went missing" and that is the beauty of the movie... No,I shall not spoil it for you...

Review: I quite liked the movie, just wish it had been tad crisper... 

Monday, June 23, 2014

The Extra Terrestrials are here..

Just as us Chennaites know that come December it is time for the Carnatic concerts, come June I know it is time for ET WOW.. What is ET WOW you ask? Tsk Tsk, what a question!! It is the coolest event to hit Chennai every year and a must watch!

The Extra Terrestrials as they are called are a set of acts put together by Show Space, they hand pick 8-9 acts out of 50-60 they sift through. These selected acts are brought down to the country and they perform across cities wowing audiences.. 

I have attended this show every year and it has been one amazing experience always!! More than me, my mom loves it. So this year, she saw the ad in the paper 10days ago and had begun asking me when I was taking her for it.. So, last week Friday was when the show launched in chennai after touring coimbatore. I took her along with my uncle and 9yr old cousin for the show. 

All of 75 mins, the event features 9 all new acts from 6 different international countries .. The evening opens with a man and a woman defying gravity using nothing but a pole, and then come the others, each of who dazzle you with their amazing talents .... 

For all the FIFA fans, there is a slice of FIFA in Chennai courtesy Zhora, the crazy goalkeeper who not only stands on a giant football but also juggles multiple smaller ones.. He is just WOW.. But then I could go on and on about each of the other acts, for each one is unique and amazing in its own unique way!! 
The other acts are, Duo Valeri- 2 men who use 2 straps and go high up in the air, Duo Brise- a couple who perform hand stands like none you have seen before. And audiences get quite a few rib tickling comedy with the Roll on Comedy act, the fat man who becomes a hunk by the end of his act.. lol.. 

If you thought you have seen it all, wait till Wang fei gets on stage and twirls em umbrellas and then a few mats... Sleek, graceful and chic.. she is all of 26yrs of age..

Wait, there is more.. The extravagant beam also called the Russian Bar  - an act performed by 3 guys, where one of them flies high in air while the other two hold the bar between their shoulders. Phew!! Hold your breath, hold on to your seats while Vik and Fabrini leave you speechless with their Illusion act- the man and the dummy and some magic.. buhahaha...

The grand finale is reserved for this high energy duo who juggle pins, who come in wearing suits and end up exhcanging their suits while juggling- they are Strahelman & Sohne, the Trial Room Jugglers... Yes, you read it right... Cant believe what you are reading? Well, go watch them live to see what am talking about!! :D

I also got the chance to spend time with them outside the show and they are all so chilled out and sweet.. most of them are in Chennai for the 1st time and say they love it here, "the food is good [ not the usual oh it is so spicy] and people are warm", they say! :D

If you havent caught them live, time to go book your tickets on and go attend the show.. They perform in Chennai from 27-29th June and then head over to bangalore to perform at Phoenix Market city [ special air conditioned marquee] on 5th, 6th, 12th and 13th July!! 

Promo video..

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Thursday, May 22, 2014

[Movie] Bangalore Days- Malayalam

Movie: Bangalore Days
Language: Malayalam
Director: Anjali menon
Cast: Dulquer Salmaan, Nazriya Nazim, Nivin Pauly, Fahadh Faasil, Parvathy menon....
Rating: 6/5

The colors as morning breaks come shining through a glass painting.... you have three best buddies.... An RJ who is always chirpy and positive on air every single day...A girl tries a ciggie, takes a puff for the first time just before her marriage because she is tensed about the whole shindig.... And then there are these good looking actors strutting about on the big screen.. Am sure this has got you feeling high enough.. So how can a movie with all these flavours be anything but amazing?! Well, that is Bangalore Days for you.

Das (Fahaad) prefers his little private space, Ajju (Dulquer) is a rebel, Kuttan (Nivin who doubles as a narrator) is  quite shy, Divya (Nazriya) is a simple fickle minded girl while Sarah(Parvathy) is quite independent with an attitude to boot. So, what is it they all have in common? Well, there are strings that connect them all beautifully. 
We have  Divya who learns about Das’s past which has her reaching out to help him... On the other hand we have Sarah who slowly but surely is attracted to Ajju, but her mom just kicks him to the curb with a few sharp questions.  And then you have Kuttan who realises his girlfriend is not too serious about their relationship, all he does is walks away. Each of these form such beautiful moments in the movie!

Sprinkle in some phenomenal music, choreography and editing, and you have a movie that has you engaged every single minute. None of the actors do over the top drama or have you tearing your hair out..  The nuances of relationships, human beings, personalities and life has been showcased so perfectly by Director Anjali menon.. Just pray this movie doesnt catch the eye of a director from another state and they get the urge to remake it... 

The wedding song...

Monday, May 19, 2014

Get your Tamil right...

I havent been this hopping mad ever. Actually, wait, the 1st time was when I endured Chennai Express. I could NOT sit through the movie, no matter how skimpy Deepiga's outfits where.. Yes, I know I have misspelt her name but I have done that intentionally!! Why cant I? When you can happily go about walking all over our beautiful Tamizh, I shall mess up your names! Gah.. 

How dare you show Dudhsagar lake and pass it off as a Village in Tamil Nadu? Call me next time you lose your way towards Tamil Nadu.

How dare you create a fake village in God knows where and make it look all cute and prim and proper and get people to assume that is how people lived..

How dare you mix up religions and create a temple with a God from a different sub case and a priest from another and assume my thatha would let that slide 

How dare you show a tradition that does not even exist - guy carrying a girl up the temple and make it seem like they are the most LOVING couple!! blah.. 

How dare the Deepiga keep saying "Bokwas" and make it look like that is how we talk!! Hullo, come have a conversation with me- i shall dazzle you with my tamil, hindi and english.. 

Phew!! Just when I thought I was done picking out all the bones from this torture of a movie, there came another one... 2 States.

I am not a fan of Chetan Bhagat, he should have stopped after five point someone!! No, did he listen to us? No, he went on to do few more things with pages inbetween [ I refuse to call them books] and am sure he scribbled knowing some director somewhere will lap em up and he would go on to become the next Shakepeare!! Bleddy Hell... 

So, there is this thing with pages in it called 2 states that got lapped up and made into a movie-- starring the dead pan Arjun kapoor and the pretty yet dumb Alia bhatt. He is a north indian boy and she  is a south indian girl. That is all.. There is nothing south indian about her or the entire set in " so called Chennai"

What surprised me was that Ananya [ Aalia] speaks beautiful Hindi while her tamizh is very fudged up.. And she is said to have grown up in Chennai all her life.. Next time call me, I shall come tutor actors in Tamil.. Hindi too if required! 

The boy lands in Chennai, they show the airport and he gets into an auto- FYI there are no autos inside the airport [get your facts straight], he then goes down the city, crossed the Chennai central [ almost telling the viewers - see how correct we are in details] and then suddenly next turn is into Pondicherry lanes [ the yellow wall and tall grey windows and narrow lanes that are so unique to Pondicherry]

The roads are filled with kolams, really? Not in the middle of the day!!  And not all of us put elaborate kolams outside our home daily... 

The house has a courtyard in the center and the lady of the house loves to sing.. how typical, right? Except here she is turned down by all the bhagavathars... [no explanations offered] and suddenly one day Arjun organises her show at his office function and she sings like a Nightingale!! Really?? wtf.. 

Again, the generalisations that Amrita Singh spews on the "Madarasis" is just so steriotypical and so 1940s!!! And we Tamilians do speak beautiful English, in case you did not know!! 

Well, I can go on and on... But am tired and fed up.!! All I wanna say is = Next time you Bollywood folks decide to make a movie set in TN or if the character is a Tamilian, call me for some insights!! I promise you- the movie will fare better~ 

Saturday, May 10, 2014

[Book review] Love, That Shit by Chandru Bhojwani

Title- Love, That shit
Author- Chandru Bhojwani
Pages- 143
Cost - Rs 195/-

One day, I received an email from Chandru asking if I would like to review his book. Since I enjoy reading and have no qualms about reading across genre, I replied with a confirmation. Within a few days an Amazon parcel arrived at home with the book in it. All of 143 pages, this is a light read indeed. 

The book opens with a note about how being in Romance is such a euphoria while breaking up is quite depressing, it is a book that goes on to explain why we feel what we feel. Every single person who has ever been in a relationship will be able to relate with this book with ease. 

Extract from the book: Like a rollercoaster, relationships have their nauseating ups, downs, twists and turns... Sure, like a rollercoaster, relationships are also fun and exciting but what happens when the ride isn’t as smooth as you thought it would be?..... 

Now those of us who have been in love know that it is no cat walk, far from it. We go through crazy range of emotions, feelings, mood swings and our entire life goes for a toss.. The pages take us through the journey called "being in love" " the aftermath of a broken relationship" and all that happens in between.  Spread across 23 chapters, each one starting with a witty quote, there are instances where the author has used anecdotes to explain the whole concept to us. The one thing that the author mentions every now and then is that we are not alone, there are quite a few others going through something similar.  

Unlike other self- help books, this book is not preachy, not does it judge you for doing what you do. He has stuck to being general, while making sure the readers connect with all that he says.  There were instances where I was left wondering if it is the author's lessons from being in love, but then shrug that thought away as I move on to the section about single men/women and their attitudes, the different circumstances and situations in a relationship and much more. Oh and he has also spoken in length about matrimony woes, arranged and love marriages, the In law factor and why marriages fail a lot more these days.  Going beyond just romance, he teaches us how to deal with LIFE... 

It was a breezy read, I think I was done with it in a few hours. Quite liked his simple style of writing. But if asked about how the book stood out or was it wow, I would have to say No. For all of us who has been thorugh atleast one relationship, we know what we went through and how we dealt with it. Apart from this, we do have friend/family circle from where we have learnt about different experiences as well.  Do give it a read if you are into the whole Men are from Mars -Women are from Venus or other such books.. 

Saturday, May 03, 2014

At the movies...

I have written about how people can be annoying in the movie theater- especially those who get on their phones and just don’t hang up. Today, I had a different kind of experience. There was a mom with her son and a daughter and her mom in the row behind mine. The movie began, the little one kept asking the mom in tamil what was happening and then the lights came on to indicate interval. I felt a jolt on my seat and turned back to see the kid jumping up and down near her mom. And then suddenly the boy sitting on the other side, few seats away from mine [behind my row] started throwing up. He threw up nonstop for a while. Instead of giving him water or something to drink, the mom kept shouting at him. And then she decided to take him to the loo, before which he threw up again down the aisle..

The grandmother swished her saree for a few mins in the air knocking off any vomit on her saree and sat back with the girl. The mom and son came back, the son sitting next to the gramma and no sooner had he sat down did she begin scolding him – Enna sapta, enna panina.. ippadiya panradhu, konjam kooda eppadi nadanthukkanum therila, naaye shaniyan [ what did you eat? What did you do? Is this how you behave, no manners at all.. curse words]… I was quite appalled.. The gramma kept at it… The child looked about 6-7yrs of age and ready to cry. Poor thing! The gramma then gave him a plastic bag and said he was to quietly vomit in that and not trouble them.

What is wrong with people? The child’s eyes were red- he could have been running a temperature or had a bad stomach.. the Movie was more important than your child’s health? Amidst the children who scream and shout, this upset me the most~~ 

Monday, March 24, 2014

[Movie] Queen experience

Disclaimer- This is not exactly a review, but more of my experience while watching Queen... If you want a review, well you gonna have to purchase a ticket and go watch the movie~~! 

Sneak peek-

There I was sitting with 2 friends on one side and a guy on the other side who'd come with his girfriend [ how do I know, cos she told someone on the phone that she was at the movie with her boyfriend, yes she spelt it out.. lol]...  Anyways, we had reached our seats just as the movie was beginning, and it was the Mehndi scene. London thumakda song was just starting as we got comfortable.... Rani's[Kangana] mind voice was running with various dialogues about "how pretty the sign that said Rani weds vijay was, and how her mom had said she was going to change into a saree but hadnt, and her brother Chintu had her phone to take pictures so she could upload them on facebook but he was missing and finally about how Vijay had changed since his London sojourn] And then as the movie progressed, the Cafe coffee day scene had the people on either side gasping and the guy on my right even uttered a swear word [ How the eff can he do that to her, he has changed but she hasnt he says.. bleddy @#%#% were his exact words before the girl shushed him]... 

As the movie progressed, I noticed most people in the theater were quite silent, either contemplating Rani move- whether she would go ahead with her Paris- Amsterdam trip or succumb and resume normal boring life... There were a few who clapped aloud when she announces at the dining table her decision to go on her honeymoon alone... There were about 3 elderly North indian women in the row behind who said "acchi baat hui" [this is a good thing] when she hops on the flight and zooms away to Paris.  

Later on, as Rani checks into her room, and hears a sudden sound, the guy next to me couldnt control his chuckles, and the girl chimed in as well.. And thn when Rani goes to the balcony and sees Vijayalakshmi (Lisa Haydon) was the 1st time, there was a gasp in the theater- mainly for what she was wearing... This very audience laughed their brains out when Rani makes those  kissy faces before kissing the hot Italian crush after the Sailing boat food challenge scene...

And when Vijay [Rajkummar Rao] is constantly calling her, telling her he loves her, one of the elderly women actually muttered " nahin jao, chod do use" [dont go, leave him]. Heck, I was amazed at the audiece and how involved they were with the movie. When in Amsterdam, Rani goes to the room and discovers 2 guys already there, the guy next to me "woah, is that what a hostel is like?" and another lady behind me said "haan, my son no told me this is how he stayed when he went to Europe for a holiday], the man next to her said "Amsterdam is such a beautiful country, mazaa aaya"... ;)  

Everytime Vijay made an attempt to reconnect with her, and the scene where she asks him to come to a cafe [after telling her roommate/friends that she cant make it to the concert], the entire hall was up in claps when the waiter brings her mint tea, addresses her by name and she swavely just shrugs off Vijay and heads off to the concert. My friends and the guy on other side commented [Vijay looks like a monkey, such a loser]  

The women laughed when Vijaylakshmi gave Rani a makeover,  including grabbing her boobs and her ass... The guys enjoyed the scene when they go to Sex store and Rani buys gifts for her families without realising what they were.  It was a howlarious moment when during the initial scenes Rani pours her heart out to everyone at the bar and then suddenly is alert on hearing a hindi tune.  

It was amazing to see the entire audience [ across ages] react, and be so completely tuned in to Rani and her actions~!! 

Monday, March 03, 2014

And that is the round up- Oscars 2014

Best Picture
Best Actor in a Leading Role
Best Actress in a Leading Role
Best Actor in a Supporting Role
Best Actress in a Supporting Role
Best Animated Feature
  • Frozen (Chris Buck, Jennifer Lee, Peter Del Vecho)
Best Cinematography
Best Costume Design
Best Directing
Best Documentary Feature
Best Documentary Short
Best Film Editing
  • Gravity (Alfonso Cuarón, Mark Sanger)
Best Foreign Language Film
Best Makeup and Hairstyling
Best Original Score
Best Original Song
Best Production Design
Best Animated Short Film
Best Live Action Short Film
  • Helium (Anders Walter, Kim Magnusson)
Best Sound Editing
Best Sound Mixing
  • Gravity (Skip Lievsay, Niv Adiri, Christopher Benstead, Chris Munro)
Best Visual Effects
  • Gravity (Tim Webber, Chris Lawrence, Dave Shirk, Neil Corbould)
Best Adapted Screenplay
Best Original Screenplay
  • Her (Spike Jonze)
This was such an epic moment when ellen rounded up quite a few actors and did this selfie.. 

To read more about the Oscars, visit the website

Sunday, February 09, 2014

[Movie] Hasee Toh Phasee

The movie opens with a bunch of people screaming and trying to open a door in a Chawl in mumbai, and a man comes up the staircase and is told it is his daughter who did the prank. He calls her aside, doesnt chide or scold her but tells her to open the door and finish what she started and they high 5. On the other hand there is another family, the dad is a cop and his 2nd son Nikhil [Siddharth Malhotra] is a naughty kid- who they lock in a room and go to watch a movie, but he doesnt stay locked in, he is out and watching the movie from the other side of the screen in no time.

Producers: Vikas Bahl, Hiroo Johar, Anurag Kashyap, Karan Johar
Production companies: Dharma Productions, Phantom Productions
Cast: Parineeti Chopra,Sidharth Malhotra,Adah Sharma

Hasee Toh Phasee is quite the entertainer, it was such a feel good movie that we walked out of the theater smiling, recollecting the quirky moments.  Coming back to the movie, the 1st time Nikhil and Meetha [Parineeti Chopra] meet is when Nikhil is passing by a house when he spots a tomboyish girl trying to escape through the barbed wires. He helps her escape and as she is fleeing the place, she says "Socho, mein idea hoti aur tum technology, humari patang kya mast udti na?”   

Now, the main plot of the movie is not a new one, it is about a guy and girl all set to get married, when the guy falls in love with another girl in the process only to go after her on his wedding day. But the way it has been taken, the approach, the characters - that is what sets this movie apart.  

Meetha is a daddy's girl [daddy's role played by Manoj Joshi], a girl who runs away because she dint get what she wanted from her dad. Her uncle is constantly yelling at her [she has short hair, wears T-shirt and trousers, is spoilt, too independent, etc etc]. She hails from a traditional Gujarati family that doesnt understand her, nor do they encourage her brilliance.  She disappears on the eve of her oldest sister's marriage only to reappear after 7 years for her 2nd sister's wedding. Infact, Karishma (Adah Sharma), her sister invites her for the wedding  but introduces her as a guest to Nikhil. It is only later that he discovers the relation, the background and Meetha as a person. 

The story is all about Nikhil and Karishma's wedding, the families preparing for it, Nikhil perpetually in need o money, Karishma constantly angry with him, and the rest of the family adding to the chaos in their own little way. Nikhil and Karishma have had a crazy relationship, she has threatened to break it off numerous times, but he holds on to the relationship saying "I know her, I love her, who is to say the next girl will be the perfect one?" 

Meetha is an oddball, she has the wildest twitches and habits, she speaks a million words a second, she drinks gallons of water and popped a dozen pills periodically. Nikhil ends up picking her up, finding her accomodation, retrieving her from the dump and putting her up at his house, driving her around, and various other adventures. During these times he learns about her, realises she is not a bad cookie, but just a misunderstood cookie. And as they discover each other, romance blossoms. On the evening of a family gathering, Meetha tags along with Nikhil for she wants to meet her dad [ hasnt seen him in 7yrs] but is told he is angry and might have another heart attack, and so he whisks her away. But then the car breaks down, and she instantly solves the issue. That evening, she shares her entire life story with Nikhil, showing off the ball that bounces like crazy, that could one day provide power for an entire apartment complex. 

Her stares, quirks, sharp dialogues, her twinkling eyes, sudden bursts of chinese, tooth paste eating, chocolate stealing habits are just amazing. Infact, she is the highlight of the movie and Parineeti has acted brilliantly, essaying the role to the dot.  Nikhil is so drawn to her that by the end of the movie he is all set to help her find the money she needs even though it is not the acceptable path. And as expected, the movie does end with a happy ending. 

It is a must watch for anyone who needs a good laugh, or wants to hold on to the belief that love does exist. Such a rib tickling, sweet, endearing, feel good, warm fuzzy movie that was.  And then ofcourse, Siddharth looks good, so does Parineeti [there is also certain cuteness in her]

Overal rating - 4.5/5 [ the .5 less because some scenes I felt were unnecessary, just as some characters were...]

[Movie] Frozen

I love animated movies, and there are quite a few I love, but the one that I absolutely adore is the latest- Frozen. More than the movie, the plot, I am in love with this adorable character in it- the snowman called Olef...

Here are two adorable videos featuring Olef from the movie.. 


Friday, February 07, 2014

[Movie] Saving Mr Banks

Cast: Emma Thompson, Tom Hanks, Paul Giamatti, Jason Schwartzmann, B.J. Novak, Colin Farrell, Bradley Whitford, Ruth Wilson

Direction: John Lee Hancock

Inspired by true events, this movie is almost like a behind the scenes look into how Walt Disney (Tom Hanks) managed to  convince the author P.L. Travers [Played by Emma Thompson] to visit USA and convert her book Mary Poppins into a feature film. 

The Trailer:

In short, the movie "supercalifragilisticexpialidocious"... haha.. I've always wanted to use that word in a sentence and here is my chance! I watched Mary Poppins movie as a little girl with a bunch of cousins and we ran around singing the songs from it "Spoonful of sugar" and "supercalifragilisticexpialidocious"... And so to watch a movie that shows how the movie got made was quite an exciting moment. 

Was at a friend's house and she showed a bunch of DVDs she had bought recently, and this is what both of  us picked. And what a right choice that was. The 2hours went by so fast, we went through several emotions through the movie- happy, excited, appaled, sentimental and finally a big fat grin on our face as the credits rolled by.   

The movie begins with Pamela Travers deciding to fly to America to meet with Walt Disney who hopes to convince her that they should convert her book into a movie [which is also a pomise he made his daughters]. But Pamela is not an easy woman to work with as you discover during the movie.  She has an opinion about everything, and quite the stiff upper lip as well. When people address her Pamela, she corrects them [every single time] that she is to be called "Mrs Travers". 

There is another story that runs in parallel, Pamela's childhood years set in 1901 in the Australian outback...She dotes on her father [Colin Farell] who loses his job in the Bank and decides to move to another town [moves his family on foot bags children and all]. But over years, he loses all his jobs and takes to drinking eventually succumbing. It is her mom [Ruth Wilson] who brings the children up single handedly. All that she went through as a child, the times spent with her dad gives us a sneak peek into her life and why she is the way she is. Infact, as the movie wears on, you discover the Mary Poppins story is her very own story.  

It is brilliant watching the scenes where Walt Disney tries to work his charm  on her, her small interactions with her driver and the way she finally melts.  

This is a movie that is good for people across ages, that will leave you feeling all warm and fuzzy by the end of it. 

Overall Rating- 5/5

Wednesday, February 05, 2014

[Movie] August: Osage County

There is a man sitting in a dark room saying “Life is very long,” and that it is taken from T.S. Eliot, which is why now when we say it ,we need to add the name after the phrase. that is Beverly [Sam Shepard] talking to the new girl he has hired to help around the house when his wife Violet [Meryl Streep] stumbles into the room mumbling something. The dialogue he says is almost like he is describing his life, for after this one scene he disappears from the house and from this world as well. 

Once their 3 daughters come to know of their dad's disappearance, they all come home to Osage Plains in north Oklahoma, and so does their Aunt Margo [Mattie Fae Aiken] with her husband Charlie[Chris Cooper]. Soon, they find Beverly's body, and this is where the actual movie begins.  

The 1st to come home is Ivy (Julianne Nicholson), a freckled girl who is still single, lives close by and who surprises her mom with her recently straightened hair. Even though she stayed back and took care of her parents, the other siblings dont really show any gratitude nor have they pitched in so far.  

Barbara (Julia Roberts) said to be her father’s favorite by Violet more than once comes with  her husband, Bill (Ewan McGregor) and her teenage daughter, Jean (Abigail Breslin). She is going through a struggling phase in her marriage, is seperated from Bill and is all set to take over her mom's life and control the same. 

And then there is the vivacious Karen (Juliette Lewis) who lives in Florida and is currently in town with her latest catch, her fiance Steve (Dermot Mulroney), who zooms in on his red Ferrari and has told her they are headed to Belize for their honeymoon right after the wedding on New Year's eve.. Even though Steve is nearly 50, he has his eyes on the young Jean who keeps brushing him off.

Once Beverly's funeral is over, all gather at home minus Little Charlie [ Violet's nephew played by Sherlock famed Benedict Cumberbatch]. There is constant bickering, fighting, arguments, words getting flung on each other during the meal till Violet makes an entry. Little Charles misses the  funeral because he forgets to set the alarm and comes home little later. He is constantly getting a earful from his mom about what a loser he is, but his dad keeps defending him and knows he is a good kid. The scene where he takes Ivy, plays a song for her on the piano is quite a moving scene.. 

During the dinner, Violet talks about how Beverly had meant to change the will to leave all the money to her but dint get around to it. After a whole host of screaming and swearing, the day wears on and at night, Ivy tells her sisters of her love for Little charles. The next morning Barbara discovers from her aunt that Little Charles is infact their half brother and not a cousin. She tries to get Ivy to break it off with him, but only ends up with her driving away from the house. That is when the girls discover their mom knew of their dads affair with their aunt. Violet repeats  “Nobody slips anything by me,” often and she is right. She has such a sharp tongue, that we are left wincing everytime she lashes out. Infact, when  she reveals others’ secrets, we cringe because we know she is deliberately stepping over the line to make the point that she is a know-it-all.

It is a movie that is well made, but then it reminded me of all the soap operas I have seen on TV, incl the likes of Brothers & sisters, where it is all about over the top drama. 

August: Osage County is a movie about a family, a dysfunctional one at that, one very similar to what we see around us. I just wished it had been crisper...  

Overall rate: 3/5