Five movies that you need to let your cinema-senses indulge in,
if you haven’t already!
Summer is the best time for cinema and while we’re technically in spring, movie magic is already in the air. The return of Indian films brought a new lease on every movie-goer’s life and though not every Bollywood masala flick is worth the three hours it holds you captive for, they do entertain the masses of people that flock to cinemas each weekend. This weekend, however, is particularly exciting because of the Wolverine blockbuster Logan (which you can’t afford to miss) and for Bollywood lovers, Badrinath Ki Dulhaniya starring Varun Dhawan and Alia Bhatt. We’ll be watching both. We also recommend you book a ticket for Osman Khalid Butt and Ainy Jaffri starrer Balu Mahi if you have’t already watched it, because it is down to a couple of shows and may not survive a week after Skull Island and Beauty and the Beast are released in Pakistan.
So, what are you waiting for? Head out and soak up some cine-sunshine!
Badrinath Ki Dulhania
Karan Johar may have shot himself in the foot by gunning for Kangana Ranaut for simply calling it like she sees it but despite his distasteful display of bullying and parochial views, Johar remains one of Bollywood’s biggest and most influential producers.
His latest includes a film called Badrinath Ki Dulhania, a romantic comedy starring Varun Dhawan and Alia Bhatt. In concept, the film is a follow-up to the 2014 film, Humpty Sharma Ki Dulhania which also featured Dhawan and Bhatt in lead roles and was also produced by Johar. Directed by Shashank Khaitan, Badrinath Ki Dulhania has the same cast as Humpty Sharma Ki Dulhania but since the plot and characters are different, it is described not as a sequel but as part of the franchise.
The film is supposed to be a cute love story between Dhawan, who stars as Badrinath Bansal and comes from a small town called Jhansi and Bhatt’s Vaidehi Trivedi, a resident of another small town called Kota. With polar opposite views, the two clash on matters and so goes the story. While the film has received mixed reviews, critics have singled out Dhawan and Bhatt as the film’s biggest USP. In addition, the film also pays tribute to Hindi cinema by including a remix of the hit ‘90s number, ‘Tamma Tamma Loge’ called ‘Tamma Tamma Again’. Currently playing in cinemas, the film should be a satisfying albeit familiar experience for those who enjoy the colour and glamour of modern day Bollywood.
La La Land
La La Land may have lost the Best Film Oscar to Moonlight but the musical that has been written and directed by Damien Chazelle is on every best film shortlist. Featuring Ryan Gosling as a jazz pianist and Emma Stone as a struggling actress, it’s a film that is about pursuing your dreams, set against the backdrop of Los Angeles. Powered by captivating performances from its lead stars, La La Land is an ode to Hollywood classics such as Broadway Melody of 1940, Singin’ in the Rain and The Band Wagon. Choreographed by Mandy Moore, the film also features singer-songwriter John Legend in a supporting role.
The Lego Batman Movie
One of the big hits of the year, released by the same team who backed The Lego Movie, The Lego Batman Movie, a 3D computer-animated comedy film is unlike any superhero film that has released in recent years. While most films in the genre tend to be dark and obscure and often for no good reason (Batman vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice), this one is ridiculously funny. Will Arnett is the voice of Bruce Wayne / Batman who is still fighting criminals in Gotham City but is forced to deal with a boy he adopted, Robin. Meanwhile Zach Galifianakis’s Joker is on the loose. Joining forces with Alfred, Robin and Batgirl, Batman takes on Joker and his many allies in this family friendly production. Made against a budget of 80 million, the film has collected over 250 million dollars worldwide and is still going strong.
Hugh Jackman’s riveting performance in Logan is getting rave reviews all over the world. The film is being considered as an unconventional but thoughtfully written and directed superhero flick. Logan is the third spin-off film in the X-Men film series to be centered on the mutant superhero James “Logan” Howlett / Wolverine after X-Men Origins: Wolverine and The Wolverine. Directed by James Mangold, Logan is the last appearance for Jackman as Logan and Patrick Stewart as Charles Xavier / Professor X. James “Logan” Howlett attempts to live quietly while taking care for a mentally-ill Charles Xavier. He faces a young girl, Laura, with identical superpowers and is swept up in one last battle with mutant-hunting mercenaries who want Laura. While the film may be violent at some points, it’s just as sensitive at the same time.
As far as Pakistani films are concerned, Haissam Hussain’s rom-com Balu Mahi, which released on February 10 worldwide, is the only local film running in cinemas nowadays. Starring heartthrob Osman Khalid Butt and the gorgeous Ainy Jaffri, the film tells the story of a runaway bride, Mahi (played by Jaffri), who escapes from her wedding with stranger, Bilal (played by Butt) who mistakenly enters the wrong hall and mistakes her as his love interest. From there on, Balu Mahi follows the story of the two as they attempt to hide from their families and the police. However there’s a twist in the film that turns the course of the film, before the two realize that they’ve fallen in love with each other. The film has largely received positive reviews from film critics and is doing considerably well at the box office.