Gudgudee | Restaurant Review

Place: Gudgudee
Location: Madhapur Main Road
Cuisine: Indian & Chinese
Meal: Dinner (with amma, wifey and our lil one)

I’ve seen this place on my way to work and wondered who would name their restaurant Gudgudee (They even have a tagline – “Tickle Your Tastebuds“). But having read good reviews about them, decided to drop in last month to celebrate my mom’s birthday. But alas, they were closed, and we ended up eating at President Dhaba (which turned out to be a disastrous affair, but that’s a story for another day). Come last Saturday, they were open, and here we were. 

We thought they might be empty walking in, but to our surprise, they were about at about 50% capacity. They have a huge place, and that means a lot. Brightly lit, with good views of the metro and the Hitech City main road, I was impressed with their overall ambience. Something I liked is their low seating towards the corners. We settled down somewhere in the middle.

Like with most of the other places, they had an online menu, which turned out to be a little different from the one I checked on ZomatoI was a little disappointed with this for I had more or less decided what I wanted to order, and some of these weren’t listed. Anyways, we started with Tomato Basil Soup and Shanghai Rolls, and for the main course, ordered Malai Kofta, a portion of Stuffed Paratha and Garlic Naan each, 4 Phulka, and Paneer Tikka Biryani.

Gudgudee | Tomato Soup

The Tomato Basil Soup was served in about 10 minutes. It had a strong Basil flavor to it and was decent. The bread crumbs were served separately which ensured that they were crisp when we dropped them into the soup. 

Gudgudee | Shanghai Rolls

Shanghai Rolls happen to be one of my favorite starters, and the ones you get at Palace Heights are the benchmark for me. The ones served here were crispy and good but nowhere close. I would have preferred them to be a little more spicier. 

While we were still enjoying the Shanghai Rolls, the main course was served.

Gudgudee | Malai Kofta

Gudgudee | Roti Basket

I asked for a not-too-sweet Malai Kofta, and they obliged. With a couple of kofta balls made of paneer and khoya, the curry was creamy and yummy. The Stuffed Paratha, with a lot of butter on it, was soft and tasty. The Phulka, though wrapped in foil, turned out to be super kadak and almost inedible. We asked for a replacement, and they obliged with two out of the four (given that we already finished two). The winner of the roti basked however was the Garlic Naan. They were soft and had tons of garlic butter on them. 

Gudgudee | Paneer Tikka Biryani

I was already stuffed with the Naan but managed to make some space for the Biryani. I’m glad I did for it turned out to be very good. With chunks of Paneer Tikka, the rice was well cooked, and the flavors were just perfect.

Overall, a good meal. But for the Phulka, we were happy with all the other dishes. I was also impressed with the portion sizes and thought the place offered value for money. Service-wise, most of the waiters were disoriented. Our lil one kept screaming “Bhaiya” to get their attention, but that didn’t help either. They definitely need to improve on this.

I’m gonna be back to try their Chinese offerings the next time around for their offering look tempting.

Food: 8/10
Service: 6/10
Ambiance: 8.5/10
Meal for 3: Rs. 1461/- 

Verdict: 8/10

Gudgudee - Tickle Your Tastebuds Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Mimi | Movie Review

Mimi Poster

Director Laxman Utekar’s previous film Lukka Chuppi was a decent flick and the trailer of Mimi looks promising. But does the movie live up to its expectations? 

Scripted and screen-written by Utekar and Rohan Shankar, Mimi, a loose remake of the 2011 Marathi film Mala Aai Vhhaychy! (which was remade in Telugu as Welcome Obama in 2013), tells you the story of a young damsel from Rajasthan, wanting to make it big in Mumbai. In want of quick money, coordinated by a local taxi driver Bhanu, she agrees to be a surrogate mother of an American couple. Few months into the pregnancy, the couple backtracks when they get to know that the unborn child might have Down Syndrome. The rest of the story is about how she handles the situation, and whether she gives up on the child. 

Utekar does a good job handling the subject, infusing humor in most of the scenes. However, the reasoning for the doctor revealing that the child might have a disability, knowing that they might change their decision, seemed contrived and unconvincing. Also, Mimi’s parent’s reaction when they get to know about the pregnancy could have been better showcased. They are super upset in the first instance, and the scene turns comic when Mimi lies that Bhanu is the father. Some of the dialogues are well-written and impactful. 

Kriti Sanon gets a meaty role, and she excels playing Mimi. She should be commended for taking up such a challenging role. Manoj Pahwa and Supriya Pathak are alright as her parents, but their characters could have been more powerful. The showstopper however is Pankaj Tripathi. With perfect yet subtle comic timing, this is one of his best performances.

Music by A. R. Rehman is not the best, but passable. I liked “Hututu” song in particular. The background score was a little uneven though. The cinematography by Akash Agarwal, and editing by Manish Pradhan are good. A little over 2 hours, the film’s length is just about perfect. 

Is it worth your time and money?: It’s a good watch, yes. After Pagglait, Netflix has another good film under their belt. 

Worth mention: Pankaj Tripathi is at his best!

Acting: 8.5/10
Story-Screenplay-Direction: 7/10
Technical Aspects: 8/10

Verdict: 8/10

PS: I liked the fact that they set up the story in 2013 when foreign surrogacy was still legal in India (banned later in 2015).

I also came across a few comments on social media that the film showcases Down Syndrome in a bad light. I agree to disagree on that point for I thought that the entire episode was dealt with maturely. Yes, they still showed it as a disability, but Mimi rejects the idea of abortion and decides to carry the child to term. If anything, the American couple is shown as small-minded fold who return for the child when they realize that he’s alright. 🤬

Narappa | Movie Review

Naarappa Poster

Quite a few Telugu movies were released on OTT in the recent past but none made an impact. After a lot of delays, Narappa was confirmed to release on Amazon Prime, which airs the original Asuran as well. Risky move? Let’s find out.

A remake of the 2019 Tamil film Asuran, which in itself is influenced by the real-life Kilvenmani massacre that occurred in Tamil Nadu in 1968, Narappa narrates the story of a poor farmer and his family in the 1980s, and their tussles with the local landlord resulting in Narappa’s younger son murdering the landlord. Narappa, who is looked upon as a spineless loser by his son, flees with him into the forest to protect him. Rest of the story is about Narappa’s hot-blooded past, and how he saves his son.

I watched Asuran first before starting Narappa, and I felt that I was watching the same movie again, for it is a frame-to-frame replica of the original. Except for one fight, every scene is literally a cut-copy-paste. The sets, background characters, most of the locations, down to the minute little detail. I’ve seen quite a few remakes, but this one seemed extreme.

Asuran vs. Narappa

The only difference I observed is in the climax fight, the original version has the village elders disapproving the son being hurt, which is missing in the Telugu version. That apart, same to same. Srikanth Addala, the credited director of the Telugu version, didn’t even attempt to showcase the storyline as per his point of view. I understand that Vetrimaaran wrote the screenplay for both versions, but how difficult is it to make the movie yours? Addala didn’t even do a good job replicating the emotions for the punch was missing.

Comparison apart, I honestly didn’t feel that the story that appalling in the first case. The concept of the elder son rebelling against the landlord was sure to result in him being killed; it’s like he’s asking for it. 

It is more or less a cakewalk for Venkatesh, and he apes Dhanush in every shot. What I fail to understand is why he didn’t make the character his own. Priyamani is okay, but her dubbing in the slang seemed a little off. Ammu Abhirami and Aadukalam Naren are the two actors who reprise their roles from the original and do justice. Ammu Abhirami, however, looked odd romancing Venkatesh onscreen given their age difference. Newcomer Rakhi, who played Narappa’s younger son, does a commendable job. The rest of the cast is alright. 

Mani Sharma is credited as the music director and G. V. Prakash Kumar is thanked in the title credits, but I thought it should have been otherwise for the music and background score is more or less the same as the original (but for the only different song is “Ooo Narappa”). The title score is good. Art work by Gandhi Nadikudikar in the flashback episodes could have been better. It’s regular business for cinematographer Shyam K. Naidu and editor Marthand K. Venkatesh for they just had to copy the original with no uniqueness. The Telugu version is about 15 minutes longer than the original, I wonder why?🤔

Is it worth your time and money?: If you’ve watched Asuran, then it doesn’t make sense at all. If you are a non-gulti, then watch the original and give this one a miss. If you are a telugite, then watch it at you’re leisure. It’s not a bad film, but I wish it had some originality to it. I rest my case.

Worth mention: The original?

Acting: 7/10
Story-Screenplay-Direction: 6/10
Technical Aspects: 7.5/10

Verdict: 7/10