Rise of the Planet of the Apes | Movie Review

Will Rodman (James Franco) is a Scientist working for GEN-SYS, a company which manufactures drugs, first testing them on Chimpanzees. Drug 112 helps improve the intelligence of a female Chimp “Bright Eyes”, but she is shot down due to unforeseen circumstances and the project is put off. Will takes in her child, names him Caesar (Andy Serkis), and raises him. Caesar inherits his mothers genes and is born intelligent. After years, Caeser attacks Will’s neighbor and therefore is put in a pivate facility, where he is mistreated. He develops rage, and with his intelligence, decides to free other Chimps. The consequences form rest of the story.

Artists Performance
Being a CG film, there is not much role for the human actors. Will Rodman is alright as the scientist. Freida Pinto has no role in the movie, and she is ok. Rest of actors are fine, with no great performances. Andy Serkis is brilliant as Caesar (motion capture), and is the undoubted star of the movie.

Story – Direction
Being the foundation film for revive of the franchise, there is not much happening in this film. Rick Jaffa and Amanda Silver (writers) dedicated most of the script to establish the character of Caesar, with very little of a rebellion in the film. I dint really understand the importance of Drug 113, it might be something for the sequel. Caesar avoiding killing of humans is something I liked. I thought the the movie ended very abruptly. Direction by Rupert Wyatt is good. The Screenplay was alright.

Other Departments
Music by Patrick Doyle is forgettable. It was good in parts, but I would have expected a more haunting score for such a movie. Cinematography by Andrew Lesnie is alright. Editing by Conrad Buff and Mark Goldblatt is fine. The motion captured digital apes created by Weta Digital are of top notch quality, but I thought that their faces looked a little distorted. Other than the apes though, the graphics were real shoddy. I expect something much better for such a high budget film.

Having heard and read good reviews about the movie, I was expecting something spectacular. Alas, I was disappointed. I am not saying that it was a bad movie, but there was that spark missing. There is no real bond between Will and Caesar, which according to me was really important. Overall, its a decent watch, but nothing you have to run to the theater for.

Verdict: 6.5/10

Delhi Belly | Movie Review

Delhi BellyNo, it didn’t take me 20 days to watch Delhi Belly. I watched it on the first day in Mumbai, but unfortunately in Hindi. Three weeks later, I finally get to watch it in the original Hinglish version, and here is my review!

Tashi (Imran Khan), Arup (Vir Das) and Nitin (Kunal Kapur) are three roommates living in a small, filthy apartment in Delhi. Tashi works as a journalist and Nitin is his photographer. Arup works as a cartoonist. Tashi’s air-hostess girlfriend, Sonia (Shenaz Treasury), whom he is forced to marry in a month’s time, requests him to deliver a package for a Russian. Tashi asks Nitin to deliver it for him, and Nitin relays it to Arup. Finally, it does not end up with the person it is supposed to, a gangster named Somayajulu (Vijay Raaz). The consequences form the rest of the story.

Actors Performance
Imran Khan does it, finally!! He proves that he can act, and makes sure he plays Tashi’s character to perfection. Vir Das is excellent. He uses his stand-up comedian experience to the fullest. Kunal Kapur was superb in his role as Nitin. It’s not so easy to create neat humor using fart jokes, while underplaying it. But he always gets it right and its never to gross. Shenaz Treasury is alright as the bitchy girlfriend. Poorna Jagannathan is good as Tashi’s other interest. But the show stealers are Vijay Raaz and his sidekick. Vijay Raaz is superb as the gangster. The rest of the cast is alright. Aamir is at his usual best in the end credits.

Have you guys seen Guy Ritchie’s 1998 caper film “Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels”?? If you answered yes, and if you are intelligent, then you should have known the story of Delhi Belly. It is very difficult to write the story and screenplay for a caper film. Lock, Stock was the first movie of its kind, and had nothing to live up to. After watching it, Ritchie’s next film “Snatch” itself seemed too predictable. It’s the way the genre is. But Akshat Verma (Story and probably Screenplay) does a very good job with the script. He infuses different sub stories into the main plot in a very effective manner, and makes sure its stays Desi. There is not one dull moment in the film. Direction by first-timer Abhinay Deo (Game was actually his second film but released earlier) couldn’t have been better. He sucks out fresh performances from every character. Making proper choices, he could be the next big thing in the industry.

Other Departments
Music by Ram Sampath is excellent. I don’t think I need to talk about “D K Bose”. It’s so in my head that while watching the climax of ZNMD, I was singing this song aloud. The background score is effective, and it is made sure that all the songs of the album are there in the movie (My friend suggested that the bg was similar to Lock, Stock.. Hmmm). Dialogues by Akshat Verma are mind-blowing. The slang used by today’s youth is all there. I’ve seen both versions of the movie, in Hindi and the original Hinglish. Dialogues in the original are much more witty than the Hindi one (Few of the literal translations into Hindi sound gross). Editing by Huzefa Lokhandwala is good. With a run time of 96 minutes, the film seemed perfect. Cinematography by Jason West is of top-notch quality. Jim Furgele, Ronnie Screwvala and Kiran Rao should be really appreciated for having the guts to produce such a different film. But it is Aamir Khan who makes the film work. If it were not for him, Delhi Belly would never have made it so big. Enough said!!

Made on a budget of 25 crores, the movie grossed 52 crores in the first 2 weeks. That speaks for how good the movie is. The plus points of the film are the cast and its awesome production values. Not to forget the publicity. The genre might make the movie a little too predictable, but it still keeps you glued to your seats. It is not a movie to be watched with your parents, but to my surprise, half the cinema-hall was filled with families watching along with their kids (both for the Hindi and Hinglish version). Overall, it’s the birth of new cinema in India, not to forget a writer, and a director. If you haven’t already, go watch it, preferably the Hinglish version. It’s a decision you mostly wont regret!!

Verdict: 9/10

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 | Movie Review

Now that Lord Voldemort (Ralph Fiennes) has the Elder wand, Harry (Daniel Radcliffe) sets off his search for the remaining three Horcruxes with Hermione (Emma Watson) and Ron (Rupert Grint). They end up at Hogwarts and the final battle begins. He then discovers that there is one more Horcrux to be destroyed and you know what happens next!! Well, if you don’t, go watch the movie 🙂

Artists Performance
Every character seems to have improved with age. Daniel, Emma and Rupert come up with mature performances compared to their previous outings. They do look very odd as adults in the ending though. Alan Rickman (Snape) surprises you with his acting skills (watch the second movie to understand what I mean). All the other characters are all right. Helena Bonham Carter (Bellatrix Lestrange) overacts as usual while in her shoes.

Story – Screenplay – Direction
Having covered the first 25 chapters of the 36 chapter book in Part 1, I was honestly hoping that they would stick to the book. But instead, Steve Cloves (Screenplay) chose to cut it short, and moreover, modify it. The final battle between Harry and Voldemort is picturized very different from the book. There is no mention about Dumbledore’s Secrets and Lies. Being titled Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, strangely there is not much discussed about the Deathly Hallows. They do not even disclose what the Third Hallow is. Director David Yates tried to infuse humor into scenes which were meant to be serious (I don’t know if its intentional). He does a better job compared to his last three films, but I believe he could have put in much more effort. They chose to convey a lot of the story through expressions which I don’t think really worked. Overall, the effect was missing in the end.

Other Departments
Music by Alexandre Desplat is mediocre. It was sad to watch gripping scenes with such dull background score. Cinematography by Eduardo Serra is of top-notch quality. Editing by Mark Day is pretty decent. The graphics stand out and it is a visual feast. The 3D effect was ok.

Being the final chapter of the series, a lot is expected from this movie and it definitely lives up to its expectations. But a lot more could have been done with it in my opinion. The climax seemed to lack the punch required and left me wanting more. People who read the book might be a disappointed. Overall, it’s a better ending to the movie series than what I expected it to be. Go watch it whether you are a Harry Potter fan or not!

Verdict: 8/10

PS: This being my first review, I know I sound kinda amateurish. I hope to improve on it soon. Next review on ZNMD coming by evening 🙂