Monthly Archives: October 2011

Ra.One Review : You burn Raavan so many times because you can’t kill him

First day first show of Ra.One . Thank my lucky temporal cosmologies that it released during the Diwali holidays

Purpose of such expensive movies

I now believe in a certain theory about a direct correlation between mega budgets and positioning a visual treat as the foremost USP of a film.

The most expensive Indian movie made to date (surpassing the budget of the previous topper, Enthiran) gives what such a mega-budgetory extravaganza promises …. a visual treat which in itself is a thing of awe for the average Indian movie-goer. ( Talk about the Indian success of Enthiran or Avatar, for example)

Anyway nothing wrong in it. How else do you justify , what else can you possibly contrive with super budgets other than have tons and tons of special & digital effects 🙂

One important conceptual point  😉

G-One (the good digital guy played by SRK)  and Ra-One (the bad digital guy played by Arjun Rampal …yes! Ra.One is Rampal , not SRK as some gullible chaps might be strutting around thinking!!!) are digital manifestations made of optical fibres or electromagnetic rays coalesced into tangible manifestations of energy; whatever! I don’t really know ! But mind you ! They are not robots or any sort of mechanical beings made of metal…

The plot

Ra.One = Major plot from Terminator 2: Judgement day  + Hero powers & special effects of Iron Man + Villain’s creation-idea from Virtuosity

Bien sur!  The whole virtual man protecting the kid  idea is straight out of Terminator 2.

The HART concept about a high-technology core that resembles a human heart embedded  into both G-One and Ra-One,  is a direct lift-off from Iron Man. The whole optical fibre shit from where the AI filled gaming characters come out into the real world , is Virtuosity…

The special appearances and gimmicks

The kid’s dream featuring  Priyanka Chopra and Sanjay Dutt (as Khal Nayak) in the opening scene . And even the three imaginary Chinese ladies called Uski -Lee (lol ! ) , Teri-Lee (Rofl !)  and Sabki Lee (Lmao!)! All these are there only for the whole SRK-Ego-trip phenomenon which we are getting to see more and more these days  (For a similar observation, watch the Don2 trailer with the slogan, The king is back 😉 )

Well ! Well ! But me being a fan and all , I wouldn’t really crib too much about it . The gimmickry in question was actually pretty visually breathtaking (SRK fighting Khal Nayak ((Sanjay Dutt)) with the latter rapid firing punch-dialogues that would make your laughter nerves itch )

Action -sequences

They were good very good. For an Indian movie, the effort and soul put into the action sequences and related effects is quite visible.Sometimes you might wonder what’s the point ?  But this is an action flick and thats how action flicks around the world are ….

The real Ra.one stands up

Arjun Rampal is amazing as the villainish Ra.One with his whole voice, his physique and sense of random alacrity. He was good ! Perhaps they should have given him a little more air-time rather than focus on G-one’s  goofy doofy humor  in the second half.

Chammak Challo

I don’t need to analyze this 🙂 But I had to mention it 😉

My verdict

Here are some more reviews to look at… TOIimdbrediffDC

As for me, I like it ..not as much I would like a brilliant movie, but the way I would like a popcorn-fare!  Though the concepts have all been borrowed , re-hashed and jumbled up from Holly wood sci-fi movies, the execution of the movie shows the effort and the heart put into the movie. And for that , my appreciation! Anyway, whatever the SRK-bashers might be tempted to say, nothing is going to stop the movie from becoming a profitable venture (for all we know, it probably had already recovered its money from distribution sales even before the movie’s release)

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The trilogy of Demetrios Askiates

The Mosaic of Shadows (Demetrios Askiates, #1)

The Mosaic of Shadows by Tom Harper

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

My first story-laced book centred around the crusades. And boy! What a start 🙂

Light hotheadedness apart, the book gives what you would least expect when you start reading it, and that is a suspense thriller set against the backdrop of the first crusade. So the surprise element , the novelty of the concept and the racy tempo add to a gripping story-line. It is also curiosity-inductively new for one who knows less about the history of the crusades.

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Knights of the Cross (Demetrios Askiates, #2)Knights of the Cross by Tom Harper

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This is more political than its predecessor and the follower. The author tries to squeeze in a mystery sub plot into the main plot but somehow, the flow doesn’t come as naturally as it did in the first part (‘mosaic of shadows’)

Apart from that, its the most stand-alone book in the trilogy if one reads only this and avoids the other two.

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Siege of HeavenSiege of Heaven by Tom Harper

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

A very high and rich depiction of the trilogy’s end. Lacks the mystery of the first part (mosaic of shadows) and the political aura of teh second (knights of the cross). But does make up for it by adapting a straight in-your-face narrative overtone of the final seige of teh holy city.

The theme involved is more military than political or suspense in the third part. Lags a bit towards the end but picks up pace again towards teh gory climax. An interesting read and one that adds variety to the diverse overtone of the trilogy.

View all my reviews

Karan Bajaj ..covered !!

Adding to my book-reading marathons are the works of Karan Bajaj. For information on the author and the plots of his two books , look at good ol’ Wiki http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Karan_Bajaj

Anyway so here below are the reviews of his two books, both of them National best sellers
 
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Keep off the GrassKeep off the Grass by Karan Bajaj
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

The thinking man’s chetan bhagat is what some call the author. I totally agree.

Definitely more hard-thought-inducing than Chetan Bhagat and for me, certainly more entertaining.Some anecdotes in the movie, ‘3 idiots’ (at least the more ‘filmy’ parts) seem to be taken from this one rather than Chetan Bhagat’s ‘five point someone’. But well! Thats just my opinion.

Anyway, a darker , a mroe satirical take on elite campus life as compared to many other contemporary,similar and concomitant works by ivy-bschool-league Indian authors. Worth a try though some parts are too ambiguous/ridiculous to be taken at face-value to be reality.(The last reason is the only factor influencing a rating-drop from a potential 4 pointer to a 3 pointer)

View all my reviews

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Johnny Gone DownJohnny Gone Down by Karan Bajaj
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

A good book … relatively a better narrative than ‘Keep off the Grass’ (the author’s previous book) which is a decent book in itself (at least compared to Chetan Bhagat’s run-of-the-mill no brainers which are more in the genre of *masala adventures for dummies** )

Follows the adventures of an American ivy league grad to different parts of the world of South East Asia to Latin America. Throw in monkhood, artificial limbs, Brazilian models and bad-ass gangsters to make a heterogenous but attractive concoction that is an amusing narrative of the age-old formula, yet novel in style.

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The Shiva Trilogy : Parts 1 and 2

The Immortals of Meluha (Shiva Trilogy, #1)The Immortals of Meluha by Amish Tripathi

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Written in a simple language, this story had the potential to create controversy, to be tagged as a religious glorification-propaganda, among other uncoveted possibilities. But thanks to the author’s witty way of presentation and depiction, it comes across as an incredibly logical storyline (though possibly fictitious). Yet, it doesn’t undermine any religious belief.

Mind you! This is not a religious book at all. It is more on the lines of a gothic/celtic fantasy like LOTR, Shannara,etc.,…only this one is set in Ancient India.

There are no Gods here. No magic no miracles. Just the power of beliefs of various characters mixed with intelligent scenario-depiction makes the whole tale get a magical aura inspite of the fact that events within the storyline go no where near impossible realms. Wonderful book!
View all my reviews

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The Secret of the Nagas (Shiva Trilogy, #2)The Secret of the Nagas by Amish Tripathi

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This book’s predecessor,’Immortals of Meluha’ is like an epoch in INdia’s answer to Lord of the Rings.

But somehow, the Secret of the Nagas , though good in its own right, falters incoherently in relative perspective to its predecessor

According to me, it is inclined more semi-politically to cover all ancient regions of India than to a storyline trying to incept a natural correlation to ancient Indian history. The introductions and twists and the revealing of identities of certain characters (who are namesakes of religious/cultural/mythological persons) looks contrived and artificially enforced. All in all, it lacks the naturally convincing flow of Part 1

But the wars and the subtle romances in between are well depicted, though still found wanting when compared to its predecessor , ‘Immortals of Meluha’

Even though I consider myself an objective critic of books, I found myself on the verge of tears at the beautiful gradiloquence presented in the first part, compared to which the second part reads like a carefully formula-driven soap and nothing more …
View all my reviews——

leaves to be seen what the concluding part , Oath of the Vayuputras  has to offer …