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  • Judgementall Hai Kya

    Judgementall Hai Kya

    ★★★

    prakash kovelamudi's bombastic directorial tics - the over-bearing, almost numbing use of background music, the rapid montage-like editing, and the decision to consistently emphasize dialogue over silences - initially threaten to entirely consume kanika dhillon's sharp writing and kangana ranaut's typically hilariously unhinged performance. but, fortunately only five-ten minutes into the film, it struck me that all this audio-visual overload is very much in service of representing bobby's psyche. viewed through the prism of our central protagonist's fractured mind, which…

  • Article 15

    Article 15

    ★★★½

    contrary to Anubhav Sinha’s barn stormingly effective Mulk in which the director made his screams against Islamophobia loud and clear through the drama in his film, the narrative in Article 15 seems a bit too subservient to his outrage against casteism. what is meant to be the driving narrative force of Sinha's film — the police's search for one of the lower caste girl who seems to have gone missing from a crime scene that saw two others raped and…

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  • Utøya: July 22

    Utøya: July 22

    ★★★★

    to claim that Erik Poppe's Utøya: July 22 exists as a vicious counter to Paul Greengrass' far-more-conventional, but still emotionally devastating 22 July is to do a disservice to both of the filmmakers' intentions. whereas Greengrass extended his focus way beyond the events that occurred on the titular date to show the psychological effect that the victims underwent, and even more crucially, examine the true meaning and strength of democracy in the face of extremism, Poppe's film eschews this macro-level…

  • De De Pyaar De

    De De Pyaar De

    ★★

    less actively infuriating and more equal in its attempts to provide all its characters with any sense of dimensionality than the previous luv ranjan scripted box-office smash hit Sonu Ke Titu Ki Sweety, director akiv ali's De De Pyaar De still mostly feels like a lazy comedy, albeit with grander pretensions of actually being about something other than male camaraderie. the problem here is not then the complete hollowness of the ranjan directed products. but, the poor way in which…

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  • Photograph

    Photograph

    ★★★½

    Imbuing what are essentially very conventional potboiler-y Bollywood plots - the mistaken delivery of a dabba to a lonely person who turns out to be the dissatisfied wife's soulmate in "The Lunchbox," and the chance encounter between two complete lonely strangers through a photograph here - with a European art-house sensibility doesn't sound like a workable fusion of styles. But, director Ritesh Batra allows the old-school Bollywood romantic charm to float around so quietly, and delicately in his bustling version…

  • Cold War

    Cold War

    ★★★★½

    This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

    time is eternal, but love and authenticity (and, perhaps even authentic love) not so much in paweł pawlikowski's staggeringly gorgeous Cold War that omits almost every possible scene that would accentuate the longing that a typical love story between two people separated by external circumstances would have. instead, the director chooses to employ an elliptical narrative that resembles small vignettes that detail meetings between Zula and Wiktor which feel very particular to the exact time and place in history pawilkowski…