Special Article: Needless Debate On Nepotism & Talent


 
By Apoorva Raturi

Nepotism has been an ongoing topic of discussion for many this year. The term used to describe the mind-set of a few who believe that they are privileged and that they deserve certain perks because of the family they are born in, was used by Kangana Ranaut in an episode of Koffee with Karan, which then triggered a fire amongst the people within the Hindi film industry and opened ground of discussions amongst the fans as well.

As she tagged Karan Johar as the “Flagbearer of Nepotism” and “A Movie Mafia” on the show, the entire industry rose to how the actress had questioned the judgement of a well-established filmmaker who was known to have given chances to many Bollywood biggies.

What followed was a public backlash from KJo that acted like fuel to the fire and led to the common people talking about the preference that is given to those who already have a Bollywood connection. With mixed reactions over the issue from various levels of the society, many actors came forward stating their opinions too, while some decided to stay mum.
While actors like Arjun Kapoor, Shraddha Kapoor, Alia Bhatt have played safe, Ranbir Kapoor, openly went on record to say that he is a “disarming product of nepotism” and a few others chose to scream at the top of their voice taking digs at Kangana and not just stopping there but going on to say in front of thousands that “Nepotism Rocks”.

The IIFA act by Varun Dhawan (son of filmmaker, David Dhavan), Saif Ali Khan (son of actress, Sharmila Tagore) and Karan Johar (son of late filmmaker, Yash Johar) had further got the entire nation by surprise. When the three big names of the industry boasted of how they had been born with a silver spoon and that it “Rocked!”
Viewed by millions of people, the three self-designated privileged men were flaked by the common people on social media. What they termed as a ‘Joke’ was clearly not taken down well by those who looked up to them. Owing to such reactions, Kjo, Varun Dhawan and Saif Ali Khan decided to make public apologies to anyone and everyone who had been hurt by their humour.

Saif even further, went down to pen an Open Letter on Nepotism which led to more backlash than what its actual purpose of calming everyone down was. He said that biologically a person was much more competent to do what his ancestors had been doing and so justified how acting was in his blood and that he was obviously supposed to follow his ancestor’s footsteps. Kangana retaliated back with a witty response saying that if the profession of the ancestors determined the value and capabilities of a person, then she would have been instead farming rather than have made a place for herself.

This ongoing war of words is something that seems will not calm down easily. With the struggles that the people who have no connections in the industry whatsoever face to those who feel it’s their birth right to be able to get a place in the industry is both a matter of opinions due to the background that they belong and also the connections that they are easily available to. As for many common people like us, Talent has just become a word that has lost its meaning in this whole feud.

Parmanu Is An Interesting Film Based On True Incident: John Abraham

Actor-producer John Abraham, who is coming up with a film Parmanu – The Story Of Pokhran, says that it’s entertaining but based on a true story. Parmanu – The Story Of Pokhran is based on the nuclear test conducted at Pokhran in 1998 when BJP leader Atal Bihari Vajpayee was the Prime Minister.

Asked if this film is somewhere a tribute to the leader, John said, “I think it is an interesting film. Atal Ji was one of the greatest Prime Ministers we had, but this is film and it has to be entertaining. Neither we are political nor are we showing anything in the film which is overtly political. We have just tried to make an entertaining film.” He added, Parmanu – The Story Of Pokhran is a very entertaining film but a true story which happened in India.

How did subject came to him? “This subject had come to Prerna and Arjun (Of KriArj Entertainment). When they came to me with this subject I liked it and then we developed it in-house. We were very fortunate as the script finally shaped up really well,” said John. The 44-year-old actor said “we are very careful in selecting only good script, because audience in today’s date looks for only good content.”
Asked to comment on the then Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, John said, “He was a visionary, he had the great vision and if we can talk about India shining, it’s only because of him. We want to give credit to our army personals and scientists who are responsible for the super power that India is today.”


The film also features Diana Penty and Boman Irani in lead roles. (IANS)

Movie Review: ‘Lipstick Under My Burkha’


The much-awaited “Lipstick Under My Burkha” is a bold and brutally honest film about the unbridled dreams of four women, trapped in their lives owing to societal norms and stereotypes.
 Set in a middle-class mohalla (locality) in Bhopal, the film centres around the lives of the four protagonists – Usha Parmar aka Buaji, (Ratna Pathak Shah), an elderly widow, who supresses her deep-seated physical desires, Shireen Aslam (Konkona Sen Sharma), a sales girl who does a job without her husband’s knowledge as she is a mere sex object for her husband who has scant regard for her feelings, Leela (Ahana Kumra), who loves a photographer Arshad (Vikrant Massey), and Rehana (Plabita Borthakur), a collegian who is a musician at heart and finds her ‘burkha’ stifling as it confines her.
How each of them lead an unhappy and uncomfortable life and secretly long to be someone else, forms the crux of the film.
Although the four protagonists are not related to each other in the film, the dexterous manner in which their lives are interwoven is laudable and speaks volumes for the cleverly crafted screenplay.
The actors portray their characters with panache and sincerity, each one becoming the character they are essaying.
Ratna Pathak Shah although distinct in her typical style, essays the sexually repressed Buaji’ with the requisite restraint and candour befitting her calibre as an actor. Konkona Sen Sharma as Shireen, is brilliant as always but does not offer anything that one has not seen her do before. It is Plabita as the split personality Rihana who steps out of her ‘burkha’ and is a different person who renders a realistic performance, as does Ahana Kumra. She is a bohemian, dauntless girl who is unapologetic about her physical needs and lives life on her terms.
Sushant Singh as the chauvinistic husband of Shireen Aslam is natural and convincing. Vikram Massey as Arshad, essays his character with honesty and is impressive. Other actors in supporting roles like the swimming instructor, Rehana’s father and Dhruv, Rihana’s friend, are equally sincere and praiseworthy.
Director Alankrita Shrivastava, manages to take the audience into the lives of her four protagonists with ease. The layered screenplay debunking myths about women in small towns and their bottled-up dreams and desires is well-written. The use of erotica which ‘Buaji’ secretly reads to propel the narrative forward, metaphorically linking it to the lives of all four protagonists is astutely handled.
There are times when the situations in the film seem a tad exaggerated and sometimes unnecessary, but presumably, Alankrita takes those liberties to establish the regularity and consistency of her protagonists’ lives.
The last scene appears a bit theatrical and forced to establish the supremacy of women over society in context of the realisation of their dreams, yet ties, in the lives of the four protagonists succinctly.
Technically, the film is skillfully mounted with moderate production values. The editing by Charu Shree Roy deserves a special mention.
Overall, the hype surrounding this film is bound to get you to watch it and disappoint it won’t. (IANS)
Our Rating: ****

‘Sanskari Censor’ Does It Again, Sex Scene Axed 

By Filmi Fanatic

Is the CBFC the new villian for the directors and their films? 

Well it seems so and that is why they are called the ‘Censor Board’ where they are censoring everything left right and centre and more so after Mr Phalaj Nihalani has taken over. The directors are getting cautious day by day of the scenes in their movies if they want it to pass smoothly through the board.
The latest example of it being the Ajay Devgn starrer Baadshao where director Milan Luthria has decided to trim the 10 minute long love making scene before sending out the film to CBFC for certification, Milan decided to self censor the film as he doesn’t want to get in trouble with the board. 
Although the scene has “aesthetically shot”,he apparently cut some portions of the scene which included kissing and bareback and now has sent it to the ‘Sanskaari CBFC’ to get a U/A certificate which was not possibe if the scenes  were kept. But in all this where are we heading to? The primitive films were a kiss was shown by  two flowers touching each other…
Hope this action by the director impresses the board and the film releases without hiccups.

Trailer for ‘Qaidi Band’ Released

Filmi Files Bureau 

Yashraj Films has released the trailer of debutants Aadar Jain and Anya Singh starrer Qaidi Band yesterday and it looks quite promising.

The film revolves around 7 under trail prisoners who hope high on their freedom, and in the same context make a band. They are then held in longer for political purposes and they fight back.

The film is slated to release on August 25th and is directed by Habib Faisal.

Shraddha Kapoor Steals The Show In ‘Haseena Parkar’ Trailer

Filmi Files Bureau 

Shraddha Kapoor has stolen the show with the Haseena Parkar trailer and she is definitely giving everyone serious acting goals. Playing the fierce queen of underworld god mother Haseena she is successful in showing how shrewd and big a mastermind she was and the film shows her journey from a young bubbly girl to a fierce and scary woman.

Her grey avatar followed by the gritty and non-emotive modulated heavy voice and straight face is far from the roles that Shraddha has portrayed earlier. She has done complete justice to the character and the hard-hitting dialogues leave a mark on the audience too. The film stars Shraddha as the infamous sister of Dawood Ibrahim, Haseena. Shraddha’s own brother Siddhanth Kapoor will be seen playing the don. The film is slated to release on August 18th and we just can’t wait for it now.

Opinion: When Creativity Is Held Hostage By Politics

Filmi Fanatic

It’s the season of controversies and the latest to join the bandwagon is Madhur Bhandarkar ‘Indu Sarkar’. Based on the 21-month Emergency between 1975 and 1977 imposed by then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi, the film has run into opposition from the Congress, which is demanding that the film be screened first to them before it is sent to the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC). The Congress have in a way taken up the job of the Censor Board upon themselves and want to judge whether scenes or words should be deleted. Or indeed, whether the whole subject is unsuitable.

But according to Bhandarkar, he asserts that the movie is not a documentary, but a work of fiction. The movie is based on the story of a husband and a wife, who have contradictory opinion about the Emergency. It’s about the clash of points of view and the backdrop of the movie is the Emergency. Also, the film is also facing a backlash from the Congress regarding the depiction of their leaders in the film, and thus the disruption of the film’s press conferences which was cancelled a few days ago.

Thereafter, Bhandarkar tweeted and shared the news citing the team of the movie was left stranded “like hostages in the hotel room.”

“Congress workers have barged in the Hotel lobby & created ruckus; me & team are stranded like hostages in hotel room. #pune activity cancelled,” he tweeted.

So much for us being a democratic country, where freedom of expression is a fundamental right but where a creative person cannot show his creativity in a work of fiction. The film is slated for a release on 28th July if all goes well, fingers crossed.