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Movie Review: Befikre

Handout photo from 'Befikre'

Aditya Chopra, the maker of one of Bollywood’s most enduring love stories (DDLJ), wanted to move with the times with his latest film "Befikre". Did he succeed? Read our review to find out.  Click here | Ranveer Singh on ‘Befikre’ and the futility of movie promotions 

Handout photo from 'Kahaani 2'
Movie Review

'Kahaani 2' fails to finish off in style

The only connections between Sujoy Ghosh’s 2012 film “Kahaani” and his latest project “Kahaani 2 – Durga Rani Singh” are the indomitable heroine, her secret past and the murky colour palette in both movies that makes everything seem gloomier and darker.  Full Article 

Handout photo from the movie "Dear Zindagi"
Movie Review

Bhatt, Khan make 'Dear Zindagi' worth watching

The highlight of the film is Alia Bhatt, who pulls off her second brilliant performance of the year after “Udta Punjab”. The focus is entirely on her and she doesn’t shy away, facing even tough scenes with a natural confidence and maturity that belies her age. “Dear Zindagi” might not be a love letter to life it was intended to be, but Bhatt and Shah Rukh Khan make this one worth watching.  Full Article 

Handout photo

Alia on why she uses gut feeling to choose films

Alia Bhatt’s two earlier releases in 2016 clicked at the box office and won her accolades for her performance. In her upcoming film “Dear Zindagi”, she plays a young woman who forms a bond with her therapist, played by superstar Shah Rukh Khan. The actress spoke to Reuters about her latest release, why she trusts her instinct in choosing films and why she doesn’t worry about burnout.   Full Article 

Photo taken from official Facebook page of "Befikre"

'Bollywood modernising feelings on intimacy'

Actress Vaani Kapoor said Bollywood has become more liberal about intimacy on screen ahead of the release of her new film 'Befikre', a contemporary romantic comedy with passionate kissing scenes. "There's a change in society," Kapoor said during a promotional event in London on Monday for the film.  Full Article 

Movie Review

'Tum Bin 2' offers nothing new

The storyline of “Tum Bin 2”, that of a person forced to choose between a past lover and another from the present, offers nothing new for the most part. While such formulaic, done-to-death plots are hardly a challenge for viewers used to Bollywood love triangles, there are other damning factors that make the movie difficult to sit through.  Full Article 

Force 2
Movie Review

John returns as angry, beefy cop in 'Force 2'

In Abhinay Deo’s sequel to the 2011 film "Force”, John Abraham returns as angry, beefy cop Yash who is out to catch a mole working for the Chinese. Packed with action shorn of cliched romance and full of breathless chase sequences though the cobbled streets of Budapest in Hungary, “Force 2” could have passed the action film test with flying colours if not for that pesky thing called storyline.  Full Article 

Handout picture from 'POW - Bandhi Yuddh Ke'

'POW' hopes to break new ground

"POW - Bandhi Yuddh Ke" is a rare finite series (126 episodes of half-an-hour duration each), is an adaptation of an internationally acclaimed show (Israeli drama “Hatufim”, which was also the basis for popular American series “Homeland”) and is about war and its aftermath – a far cry from the melodramatic prime-time shows in India that focus on scheming mothers-in-law.  Full Article 

Handout photo from 'Ae Dil Hai Mushkil'
Movie Review: Ae Dil Hai Mushkil

Ranbir Kapoor manages to bring some empathy

In one of the most prescient lines in Karan Johar’s “Ae Dil Hai Mushkil”, a character tells another: “Only the insecure hide behind big words.” This might as well have been a comment on the film, with all the verbosity that is encompassed in 157 minutes of this romantic drama.  Full Article 

Handout still from the film 'Shivaay'
Movie Review

'Shivaay' feels like a three-hour tribute to Devgn

More than 25 years after he first made his debut in "Phool Aur Kaante", Ajay Devgn directs himself in "Shivaay" and if the 172-minute evidence is anything to go by, it would seem he was looking for a Bollywood relaunch. Because that's what "Shivaay" feels like - a three-hour tribute to Devgn, his myriad talents and the unrelenting showcase of his many qualities.  Full Article 

Bollywood hopes Diwali will light up box office
Diwali Blockbuster

Bollywood hopes Diwali will light up box office

Bollywood is pinning its hopes on two of this year's biggest films opening on Friday to rev up a lacklustre box office for the festive Diwali season.  Full Article 

Anupama Chopra

Anupama Chopra on Mumbai Film Festival

The Mumbai Film Festival, which was almost cancelled two years ago due to lack of funds, has been given a new leash of life by sponsors such as Reliance Jio and Star. Festival Director Anupama Chopra spoke to Reuters about the challenges of running a festival and whether too much of Bollywood can be a good thing for an event that once stayed far away from the Hindi film industry.  Full Article 

Handout photo
Movie Review

Saat Uchakkey

Sanjeev Sharma’s “Saat Uchakkey” (Seven Loafers) is a supposedly absurdist comedy about seven wastrels who plan a treasure heist in an ancient mansion. The film begins in a mental hospital, where a gullible young doctor is told of the legend of Bichchi, the institution’s most dangerous inmate who’s been in solitary confinement for 20 years.  Full Article 

Director Ron Howard (R) poses with actors Tom Hanks (3rd R), Felicity Jones (L), Omar Sy (2nd L), Irrfan Khan (2nd R) and writer Dan Brown at a screening of his film 'Inferno' in Florence, Italy October 6, 2016. REUTERS/Max Rossi

Celebrity opinions blown out of proportion: Irrfan

Irrfan Khan is just back from Florence in Italy where he attended the premiere of his latest Hollywood project - Ron Howard’s “Inferno”, based on Dan Brown’s best-selling book. He spoke to Reuters about his role in the film, diversity in Hollywood, and why more Indian actors will cross over to the West.  Full Article 

Handout photo of 'Mirzya'

Movie Review: Mirzya

In the most complex of Punjab’s tragic love stories, Sahiban dooms her lover Mirza to death rather than have him kill her family. Why she did that has remained an unanswered question till now. And by his own admission, it was this very mystery that compelled Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra to make “Mirzya”, a modern-day take on the age-old tale.   Full Article | Harshvardhan Kapoor on his ambition  

Handout photo from 'M S Dhoni: The Untold Story'

M S Dhoni: The Untold Story

Neeraj Pandey’s “M S Dhoni: An Untold Story” opens with a story that has been told a thousand times. It is no surprise that this official biopic begins and ends with that pivotal match. The scenes in between are packed with three hours of cricket, some song and dance and a lot of Sushant Singh Rajput.  Full Article 

Handout photo
Movie Review

'Parched' seems a little too contrived

The three leading ladies in “Parched” shine in parts, but their performances are hampered by some predictable writing and a director who seems to treat her characters and setting as a tourist rather than someone with an insider's point of view. The film therefore seems a little too contrived to be a memorable tale of women empowerment.  Full Article 

Handout still from the film "Banjo"

'Banjo' cannot be rescued

If you saw Ravi Jadhav's "Banjo" without any knowledge of his filmography, you'd think this was an amateur effort rather than a film by an accomplished director. Jadhav, who made the wonderful "Balak Palak" and "Natsamrat" in Marathi, seems to have lost his mojo during the transition to Hindi films and slides deep into mediocrity and cliches.  Full Article 

Handout photo from "Pink"
Movie Review

'Pink' is largely a triumph

Some of the scenes in "Pink" are wonderfully handled and the acting, especially by the three lead actresses, is top-notch. But the lack of attention to detail makes you wish the makers had paid some attention to how basic court procedures are handled. The film is largely a triumph that talks about a burning topic and finds an entertaining way to do it.  Review 

Handout photo of Shootjit Sircar

Shoojit Sircar on what Bollywood is doing wrong

Shoojit Sircar is happy that his first project as a producer is being praised for boldly talking about the issues of sexual assault and consent. The film-maker spoke to Reuters about the significance of the message in “Pink”, whether or not he ghost-directed it, and what Bollywood is doing wrong.  Full Article 

Om Puri wants more 'socially conscious' films

Om Puri wants more 'socially conscious' films

The Indian film industry needs to break out of its mould and produce more hard-hitting films that challenge its audience, veteran actor Om Puri said. Puri, who has acted in both Hollywood and Bollywood and was awarded an OBE (Order of the British Empire), said Indian filmmakers should draw on the country's rich culture and history.  Full Article 

Handout photo from the film "Baar Baar Dekho".
Movie Review

Baar Baar Dekho

In Nitya Mehra’s “Baar Baar Dekho”, a young man on the cusp of a new life gets a glimpse into his future, giving him an otherwise impossible chance to go back and forth in time to fix the mistakes that we all seem to make in our relationships.  Full Article 

Handout photo from the film 'Freaky Ali'.

“Freaky Ali” doesn’t quite “putt” it

Under the flimsy cover of a sports film, “Freaky Ali” is just another Bollywood ‘good guy versus bad guy’ movie. This is an unabashedly populist film that makes no attempt to actually understand the sport at the centre of it. Every character is a caricature and every plot point already seen in a thousand other films.   Full Article 

Handout stills from "Baar Baar Dekho"
Director's cut

Interview: Nitya Mehra on 'Baar Baar Dekho'

For a debutant director, Nitya Mehra has an impressive resume. The Amritsar-born filmmaker has assisted Mira Nair in “The Namesake” and Ang Lee in his Oscar-winning “Life of Pi”. She also worked on the Indian version of the TV series “24” and assisted Farhan Akhtar on the crime thriller “Don 2”.  Full Article 

Still from the movie "Akira"
Movie Review

"Akira" suffers from outdated treatment

In A R Murugadoss’ action film “Akira”, Sonakshi Sinha plays the eponymous protagonist, a feisty college student who is being chased down by four corrupt police officers. In an industry flooded with macho heroes who save damsels in distress, Akira is an exception – a girl who fights for herself and punches the men where it hurts, writes Shila Jamkhandikar.  Full Article 

Handout photo from the film "Island City".

Movie Review: Island City

In Ruchika Oberoi’s anthology, three strangers and their fates interconnect in unexpected ways, giving us an intimate and wonderfully observed film about people who are, in some form or the other, isolated and desperately looking for an anchor in their lives. Set in Mumbai but with characters that could belong anywhere, Oberoi manages to sketch the lives of three lonely people eloquently.  Read 

Movie Review: A Flying Jatt
Superhero Movie

Movie Review: A Flying Jatt

There are many limitations in Remo D’Souza's repertoire as a director but in “A Flying Jatt”, he combines humour, a social message and out-of-this-world fight sequences to give us a film that looks like a box-office winner, even though it won't win any prizes for film-making.  Full Article 

A still from the film "Happy Bhag Jayegi"

Movie Review: Happy Bhag Jayegi

Mudassar Aziz’s “Happy Bhag Jayegi” is a romantic comedy about a runaway bride who wants to escape an unwanted alliance, but lands in more trouble than she bargained for. The plan goes awry and she lands not in the arms of the man she loves, but in another country.  Full Article 

Bollywood actor Anil Kapoor waves to fans at the gala opening of the film 'Chillar Party' in Brampton June 24, 2011. REUTERS/Mike Cassese/Files

I love taking risks with my work: Anil Kapoor

Not many Bollywood film stars go from the big screen to television, but the Indian actor and producer Anil Kapoor has not had a traditional career. "People say that movie stars and big movie stars don't do television because from the big screen you're in everybody's bedroom, it's small screen. So that risk was there," Kapoor told Reuters in an interview in London.   Full Article 

Regional Focus

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CBI arrests former air force chief SP Tyagi in bribery probe

NEW DELHI The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) arrested the former head of the air force, retired air chief marshal S.P. Tyagi, on Friday in an investigation into allegations of bribery in a contract to buy for a dozen AgustaWestland helicopters, an official said.


Surprise, surprise: RBI wrong-foots investors again

MUMBAI When it comes to interest rate decisions under Reserve Bank of India's new governor, Urjit Patel, the only certainty seems to be that nothing is certain.


India's industrial output unexpectedly contracts in October

NEW DELHI India's industrial output unexpectedly fell 1.9 percent in October from a year earlier, driven down by a contraction in manufacturing and mining sectors, government data showed on Friday.


Oil edges up about 1 percent on optimism over non-OPEC output cuts

NEW YORK Oil prices rose about 1 percent on Friday, trading within a narrow range, on hopes that non-OPEC producers meeting in Vienna over the weekend would agree to cut output to bolster the group's own agreement to limit production. | Video


Steel minister says not in favour of protectionist moves

NEW DELHI India's debt-laden steel industry should not take the government's protectionist measures for granted and need to raise their efficiency to compete with foreign companies, the country's steel minister told Reuters in an interview on Friday.


Bitcoin hits highest levels in almost three years

LONDON Web-based digital currency bitcoin hit its highest levels in almost three years on Friday, extending gains since India sparked a cash shortage by removing high-denomination bank notes from circulation a month ago.


Samsung to disable Note 7 phones in the U.S. via software update

Samsung Electronics Co Ltd said on Friday that a software update for Galaxy Note 7 smartphones will be released mid-December in the United States preventing them from charging and functioning as mobile phones, rendering them useless.

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