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Two good movies

It’s not often that you see a movie and want to write about it. But recently, I watched 2 that are worth mentioning…

There’s magic in the air

LucyThe first one was Chronicles of Narnia, a really well crafted fairy tale by CS Lewis and equally well rendered onto the silver screen by director Andrew Adamson. I’d say it’s a must-watch inspite of its ‘Hindi moviesh’ length. The acting overall, was especially good and the one character that I particularly loved was young Lucy Pevensie (Georgie Henley).

It also brought to mind an important question. What do these young people eat while growing up? They’re definitely feeding them things we never ate. She’s 5 and acts like a total pro! And she has the most beautiful eyes. What a darling. Apparently Adamson gave all of them i-Pods once they had finished filming and she thanked him profusely before turning and asking: “What is it?”!

CS Lewis’s magical tale is brought to life in true technicolor glory by Adamson who recreates a world where animals talk and where the landscapes are overwhelmingly stark but beautiful (the ice castle looks overwhelming!). The war scenes with mythical creatures like the half men-half horses and those huge birds all seem to come to life on screen drawing us into a world, where you can’t help but believe for a while that there is magic everywhere!

AslanAnd the lion : voiced by Liam Neeson… Wow, what can I say? Being a lover of cats, I have a soft spot for all animals in this particular family, including the lion. What a majestic creature. One forgets after a while that it’s “talking” lion and actually begins to believe it is really talking!

This is only one of CS Lewis’s novels in the series. There are quite a few more (perhaps enough to keep Adamson occupied for the rest of his career!), and since this one has been brought to the screen successfully, we will no doubt see the sequels…

Publication Order:
1. The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe
2. Prince Caspian
3. The Voyage of the Dawn Treader
4. The Silver Chair
5. The Horse and His Boy
6. The Magician’s Nephew
7. The Last Battle

Chronological Order:

1. The Magician’s Nephew
2. The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe
3. The Horse and His Boy
4. Prince Caspian
5. The Voyage of the Dawn Treader
6. The Silver Chair
7. The Last Battle

(Source: Wikipedia)

Adamson is now working on the sequel, Prince Caspian slated for release in December 2007.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Also, caught up with the much talked about Rang de Basanti.

rang de basanti

The acting: Unlike what was expected, Aamir didn’t hog all the attention. It was well divided between all the friends. I especially liked Siddharth & Kunal Kapoor. The whole first half exuded such vibrancy that you couldn’t help but be affected by this group of friends and especially their humour, which was so relatable.

The story: The historical parts interspersed with the present integrated well into the storyline. The end yes, it has been much debated. Despite its extremity, in its defense, I have to say that it makes one think and that’s more than what many movies these days do. After having watched and reviewed many crappy movies I must say this one definitely stood out in all aspects : whether it was cinematography, music, editing, acting etc.

On the downside, it is hard to digest what they do in the end as a feasible solution and I’m not sure why Rakeysh Mehra decided to go with this particular ending. Was it optimistic? Was it pessimistic? What was it trying to say to the youth? I, for one, wasn’t really clear. Especially the whole cracking down scene on demonstrators, and the finale at the radio station seemed like taking things too far. I know the director has creative licence, but I did wonder since otherwise the movie unfolded so well.

Was such an extreme step necessary? Couldn’t there have been an alternative if Mehra’s point was to show that the youth are responsibility for making sure the country moves in the right direction and not just sit around and complain. Perhaps a more feasible story, to an otherwise really sane, interesting and youthful film would have gone down well.

And on an end note, the songs I think were quite brilliant. They not only wove themselves into the fabric of the film, but also conveyed a sense of vibrancy that nearly had me up and doing the bhangra along with the rest of them. All in all, I’d give it a 8/10 from my side. What’s your take?

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24 Comments

  1. Hi Anita.

    Saw Chronicles of Narnia yesterday and enjoyed it very much. Might even think of seeing it again. 🙂

    (I wish I could get a voice-over gig in one of these movies…)

  2. Chronicles of Narnia was so fabulous..First half I I watched it like thise kids as if the events were unfolgin right there in front of me.. 🙂

  3. 8/10 for Rang De Basanti from me too…I think the end is justified…had those guys been let off, it would have meant glorifying the means they used…so it was logical that they die.

  4. This was vintage AnitaBora, a post long overdue.
    I loved both the movies, and if it wasn’t written about in 70% of the blogosphere, i would also have given my 10 paise bit. The end was very much a possibility in our Raj. And Killing a mantri is not a new phenomenon in Bollywood a la Deol family.

  5. Manohar says

    Otherday I saw the interview of Mehra’s regarding RDB..Mehra’s point is that RDB makes youngsters to think..He told he is influenced by fall of Berlin wall…Message to youngsters is to think..thats all what Mehra trying to tell..Overall I agree with you on 8/10..

    Cool

  6. madman: why don’t you try for an audition for the next one, prince caspian 😉

    nero: exaggerated i can understand. but somehow i felt that they could have done a better job with the end. else, no complaints!

    sangita: truly fabulous. it just amazes me no end as to what they can do these days!

    ullas: i agree. but couldn’t they have been brought to justice in a proper fashion?

    tony: thanks! i know its been written about widely but i thought i’d pitch in anyway 🙂

    manohar: that he was definitely successful in doing, i think. at least it has generated a lot of debate amongst folks, including bloggers 🙂

  7. sathish says

    I completely agree with the director on the end of RDB. RDB tries to draw the parallel between the story of Bhagat singh et al and these young boys. The director lets the parallel run right till the end where these young men just like Baghat sigh & co. kill the enemy and are themselves killed/executed. But what followed the death of Bhagat Singh et al was the intesification of Indian freedom fight and the independence itself. Similarly, the director wants us to get inspired after this movie and then intensify our fight against the corrupt & populist politicians.

  8. The first movie sounds interesting. As for the second, the end was very impractical although the format of the film and the way it was presented was unique and interesting. One has to look for deep rooted long term sustainable solutions instead of symbolic incidents.

  9. Deepa says

    Saw RDB. Felt like I got my money’s worth (all 8 dollars I mean!!!) Looks like Aamir and team may once again be the front runners for an Oscar nomination atleast among the domestic picks. I liked the songs, but still feel like complaining a little bit about the extent to which they have been used,was it a tad bit loud? None of the characters were wasted (even the parents). Hats off to Aamir for sharing screen space equally with the others despite his super-star status.
    And finally dunno how much it will serve to inspire India’s young to actually start another “revolution”,but I for one am surely inspired to get a good book on pre-Independence India and refresh my memory about things we studied back in history classes..any suggestions???
    Anita, on a more personal note,good job with ur blog, I am from Bangalore, currently in Dallas. Shoot me an email and maybe we can meet someday?

  10. @ Anita

    You have a point but isn’t it the sheer inadequacy of the judiciary and law that led the five guys to do what they did. Could the same system have punished them while it failed to punish the defence minister?

  11. Hi anita…wanted to request y to boycott google on valentine’s day…this is to support freedom of information and protest google’s collaboration with the chinese govt. i sound like a rabit political activist no? 🙂

  12. The climax was bit well planned. Rakesh Mehra tried 2 keep the viewers heart heavy so that somethinking goes into the minds of the watcher. If it wud have been some thing like Yuva. It doesnot give viewer any thoughts when they exit out of the movie. What say?

  13. Saw Narnia with the kids yesterday. We thoroughly enjoyed it. Was in Bangalore for a few hours recently. How do I contact you the next time I am there?

  14. Hi,

    Saw Rang de B—-.
    I do not know why everybody is cribbing about the end.Is it not liked just because Amir died in the end, then its a faltu objection, if not ,then with the similarity with bhagat singh and Azad et el would take the storyline as it is.
    Sure an oscer winner.
    real

  15. About RDB’s ending, as well as the protest scene… I think it would be what any governement would do. Extreme measures would be undertaken in order to silence propagators of anti-government propaganda, as long as they can do it under the guise of something else. In this case, they would have wanted “no survivors”, becos’ otherwise, they would have got press bandwidth, which would have only made things worse for the powers that be.

  16. 9/10 for rdb from me. i don’t think that the end should always be right. infact, the guys don’t even justify themselves, it’s just that they felt frustrated at their friend’s death and did so.

  17. i had finally been able to see the movie in dhaka and thanks to piracy.
    i was moved enough to write and rave about the movie. in my opinion the current events specially public’s support on jesscia lal case shows that movie has some impact on people.
    i only hope that effect remains there for long enough to set chain reactions in motion.

  18. simran says

    RDB is a gr8 movie n i wish this movie gets all the awards in 07 coz the movie deserves all the awards from best actor 2 best newcomer …….
    i request mr. mehra to continue making such films but plz no matter whosoever the main actor is,plz cast kunal kapoor in ur movie.plzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

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