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Showing posts from July, 2017

failed love with hit songs: Meri Pyaari Bindu and Praktan

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Last weekend I happened to watch two recent Bengali-milieu films that provide unconventional finishing points while repeatedly incorporating old film songs: Meri Pyaari Bindu (2017) and Praktan (2016). Both also touch on the "older but wiser" idea, which is utterly refreshing for a few reasons. Primarily, it's just true in life that we have the opportunity to learn from past mistakes and experiences, and that generally we're better off when we act on that learning. People who are figuring things out are more interesting than those who haven't started to question.

There's a sort of demographical issue to think about as well: as a significant set of film stars (heroes, specifically) ages, filmmakers really need to find ways to incorporate the slipping of time out from under them into the stories they enact. Granted, that's not what the makers of either of these films are about, but we've seen recent examples that are. Both Aamir and Shahrukh have had t…

Jagga Jasoos

I want to get something out of the way: once again a major Hindi film bungles its major female role. In fact, in this film, Shruti (Katrina Kaif) is the only female role to have more than a few sentences—it's a ridiculous Bechdel Test fail—and she is not written convincingly at all. It's a Boy's Own type of narrative, put in a (pointedly?) Goopy and Bagha-style world in which women don't figure. Even in the fantastical world of this film, she doesn't really read as an investigative journalist. I assume a person can be an investigative journalist while also being a klutz and general goofball, but maybe not when going after arms smugglers?

To my surprise, I have no major problems with Toddler Fishface's performance. It's probably the least bad I've ever seen her be, but she brings nothing in particular to it other than a perhaps unique ability to fall over. The woman-child Katrina persona (see also Bang Bang, Jab Tak Hai Jaan, possibly Ajab Prem Ki Ghaza…