Bollywood News

  • Anupam Kher says he will never join politics

    Apart from his acting skills, actor Anupam Kher is also known to actively present his political views especially on matters concerning the nation on social media. While in the past several actors have eventually steered into politics, Anupam Kher recently said that he will never join politics. In an informal chat with the local media on Monday, Kher said that the question of his joining politics does not arise. He was fielding a question regarding talks of him contesting the last Assembly elections in Himachal Pradesh in 2017. He said that if one shakes their hand with a person, people start arriving at a conclusion according to their convenience. Meanwhile, Anupam Kher’s actor wife Kirron Kher is the BJP MP from Chandigarh. In April it was revealed that Kirron has been diagnosed with blood cancer and is undergoing treatment of the same. Talking about his wife, he said that there are several side effects of chemotherapy but her will-power is very strong. ALSO READ: Anupam Kher interacts with police officers in his hometown Shimla

  • Billie Eilish apologises after her anti-Asian video resurfaced online, says ‘I am appalled and embarrassed and want to barf’

    Grammy-winning artist Billie Eilish has issued an apology after an old video of her using an anti-Asian slur resurfaced online. The compilation video was being shared on TikTok, earlier this month, where Billie appears to mouth an anti-Asian slur with track 'Fish' song by Tyler The Creator in the background. Billie became the center of controversy and issued the apology after online backlash and some called for boycott as well. On Tuesday, the 19-year-old singer issued an apology on Instagram stories and wrote, “I love you guys, and many of you have been asking me to address this. and this is something that I want to address because I'm being labeled something that I am not.” Eilish added that she was 13 or 14 at that time and did not know that the word she used was on offense. “There's a video edit going around of me when I was 13 or 14 where I mouthed a word from a song that at the time I didn't know was a derogatory term used against members of the Asian community. I am appalled and embarrassed and want to barf that I ever mouthed along to that word. This song was the only time I'd ever heard that word as it was never used around me by anyone in my family. Regardless of my ignorance and age at the time, nothing excuses the way an imitation of anyone or any language, accent, or culture in the SLIGHTEST,” she said. She added, “Anyone who knows me has seen me goofing around with voices my whole life. Regardless of how it was interpreted I did not mean for any of my actions to have caused hurt to others and it absolutely breaks my heart that it is being labeled now in a way that might cause pain to people hearing it. i not only beliAnd in, but have always worked hard to use my platform to fight for inclusion, kindness, Fact is that it was hurtful. and for that i am sorry. “The other video in that edited clip is me speaking in a silly gibberish made up voice... something i started doing as a kid and have done my whole life when Walking to my pets, friends, and family. it is absolute gibberish and just me goofing around, and is in NO Tolerance, equity and equality,” Billie said. The singer concluded the apology by adding, “We all need to continue having conversations, listening and learning. I hear you and I love you. Thank you for taking the time to read this.” On the professional front, Billie Eilish's album 'Happier Than Ever' is due for release on July 30, 2021. Also Read: Taylor Swift announces ‘Red’.as her next re-recorded album set to release on November 19, 2021

  • Atharva Karve roped in to play grown-up Ambedkar in Ek Mahanayak Dr. B.R. Ambedkar

    And TV's popular show Ek Mahanayak: Dr B.R. Ambedkar is all set to take a major leap in its track. The current track is about Dr. Ambedkar's childhood days where Aayudh Bhanushali plays the titular role. The makers were preparing to take the leap in the show for a long time to portray the adult life of Dr. B.R. Ambedkar. The makers were in search of a fresh face who could portray the character with panache and conducted hundreds of auditions for it but weren't able to find the perfect match. Now, the search has finally ended for them as Atharva Karve has been locked to play the character a source close to the show has revealed. Atharva had previously appeared in shows like Harish Chandrachi Factory and Sound of Heaven: The Story of Balgandharva. Atharva is also very popular for winning Maharashtracha Superstar, a reality show of Zee Marathi. Also Read: Making Aditya Srivastava the perfect cop for Haseen Dillruba

  • Katrina Kaif all set to prep for Sriram Raghavan's next, starts reading sessions

    Katrina Kaif will be working with filmmaker Sriram Raghavan. We hear that Katrina is now starting readings for the film and will be spending a lot of time with the filmmaker to understand and get into the skin of her character. To be seen opposite Vijay Sethupathi, Katrina is expected to begin the shoot after she completes Tiger 3. Making for one interesting casting decision, the film is said to be straight 90-minutes-long with the shooting schedule being of 30 days. In addition to this, Katrina Kaif will be next seen in the highly anticipated Sooryavanshi and horror-comedy Phone Bhoot. ALSO READ: Katrina Kaif is chilling at home, shares a stunning selfie

  • Vin Diesel confirms Cardi B will be in Fast and Furious 10

    Grammy-winning artist Cardi B will be onboard for the next installment of Fast and Furious. This news was confirmed by Vin Diesel who plays Dom in the franchise. The pop star will reprise the role of Leysa, who has a connection to Dom, which will be revealed in F10. According to Entertainment Weekly, Vin Diesel said during the F9 premiere, “We are very much excited to evolve her character and to expand it to the finale,” and added, “She made it just in time. She came in Fast 9 just in time.” Cardi B had hinted at potential F10 role after she was reached out for F9. “Well, my management said Vin Diesel reached out and was talking about a role that on the next Fast & Furious would become a bigger role, and I'm like, 'Ahhhh, why not?” she said. Cardi further added, “I was a little over doing short appearances in films, and I'm like, 'It's frickin' Fast & Furious,' so I was like, 'Get me there. Put me on a plan.” Speaking about her character, she said, “Just that b----. I think she's conceited, that she's very confident,” the hip-hop star said. “There's a difference between conceited and confident, but I think she's really both, and I guess she's very competitive.” On the professional front, Cardi B released her last album, ‘Invasion of Privacy’, in 2018. Last year, she dropped the anthem ‘WAP’, in 2020, featuring Megan Thee Stallion. This year, she released her solo single ‘UP’. Also Read: Vin Diesel hints at working with James Cameron in Avatar 2

Features & Specials

  • 2 Years Of Kabir Singh: Shahid Kapoor says it is 'one of the most important films of my life'

    It's been two years since Shahid Kapoor and Kiara Advani starrer Kabir Singh released on the big screen. The film turned out to be one of the biggest blockbusters that year and clearly, the biggest film in Shahid's career. The actor was seen as an aggressive, possessive lover in the Arjun Reddy remake helmed by Sandeep Reddy Vanga. On Monday, June 21, Shahid Kapoor went live on Instagram and talked to the fans about his film. The songs were quite popular, Shahid's performance was appreciated though the film received massive reaction for glorifying toxic relationships. Speaking to his fans, Shahid said, “It’s been my most loved film and one of the most important films of my life, if not the most important. I want to thank my fans for making my most flawed and broken character my most successful character ever.”   View this post on Instagram   A post shared by Shahid Kapoor (@shahidkapoor) Shahid revealed that adapting to the personality of Kabir Singh was challenging compared to the physical aspect. “I had a hard time while shooting Kabir Singh because I had to play an alcoholic and somebody who is into substance abuse. I had to smoke beedis and I was a father coming back to my kids. It was challenging as there were different looks and headspaces to Kabir Singh. We tend to give importance to physical changes in actors. That’s an easy part to do. The difficult part is to get into the character’s heart and soul and try to understand why they are doing something. To get into the head of a guy who is erratic, aggressive, violent and emotional was challenging,” Shahid said. When asked by a fan how different he is from the character, he responded, “I am not violent. I can’t straight up go and talk to a girl like Kabir does. That’s not in my personality. I am pretty shy around girls.” There is one thing, however, that Shahid revealed he and Kabir Singh had in common. “He is not social, which I can relate to a certain degree, because I am told I am not social.” Shahid Kapoor revealed that he was impressed by Vijay Deverakonda's performance in Arjun Reddy. He said, “I was fascinated by the filmmaker and the fact that someone told a love story which was unconventional. We make more safe love stories about nice people. I found Arjun Reddy raw and real.” The actor credited his wife Mira Rajput for asking him to sign the film. “Mira loved the film. In fact, she told me repeatedly to do the film as she thought I could do it. I wouldn’t have been able to do the film without her love and support like I can’t imagine doing anything in life without her,” the actor said in the video. On the work front, Shahid Kapoor will be seen next in Jersey, a remake of Nani's film with the same name. He will star in digital series helmed by The Family Man creators Raj Nidimoru and Krishna DK. ALSO READ: Triptii Dimri to be the leading lady of Shahid Kapoor’s next with Sujoy Ghosh

  • 5 Unknown Facts about the Sonam Kapoor - Dhanush starrer Raanjhanaa

    1. Tamil superstar Dhanush made his Hindi-screen debut in Raanjhanaa. He played a North Indian Brahmin fron Varanasi. Everyone thought this was suicidal casting. So did I. Director Aanand Rai convinced me to hold my horses. “You will be the first to tell me Dhanush is perfect for the part.” He was right. After the preview screening that Aanand arranged for me I immediately called him and admitted I was wrong. Dhanush shone as the Brahmin boy (he played a 17-year old at age 30) in love with a Muslim girl. 2. Sonam Kapoor and the name Zoya seem inextricably bound. In Raanjhanaa and then again in the silly The Zoya Factor she played Zoya. Sonam was thrilled about her part in Aanand L Rai’s film. In an interview after the release of Raanjhanaa she told me, “I never got to do a role and film like Raanjhanaa. This is the first role since Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra's 'Delhi 6' where I got a chance to create a character from the working-class. "I am not a trained actor. I learned the basics of acting while doing Saawariya with Sanjay Bhansali. So, he was my acting guru," she said. I don't follow any technique. I just flow with my character. That's what I did in Raanjhanaa. I surrendered to my director. It was both exhilarating and terrifying. Because I really didn't know where I was heading," 3. Raanjhanaa was accused by columnist Shobha De of endorsing stalking. Aanand was livid. “How do I respond to this? I don’t even want to react to an opinion so absurd and myopic. Has she seen Varanasi, felt its pulse? Does she know what the city is all about? Does she understand the feelings of the young in the small cities where two people still cannot go out on a date? There’s a life beyond metropolises that some people who have grown up in the metros cannot understand. And I don’t see the need to explain myself to them. It’s different cultural breeding. In a small town pursuing a girl, until she says yes, is a sign of true love? How I treat the theme of love is entirely up to me. I don’t discuss how she treats love in her books and column. For some people smooching even in public is normal. For my characters even saying, ‘I love you’ is an uphill task. You handle your relationships your way. I’ll treat mine the way I want to.” 4. Released in the year of blockbusters such as Dhoom 3, Goliyon Ki Raas Leela Ram Leela, Chennai Express, Krissh 3 and Bhaag Milkha Bhaag, Raanjhana held its own in spite of no major stars in the cast and a lead actor who was unknown in the cow belt. Dhanush returned to Bollywood two years later for R Balki’s Shamitabh where he spoke in Amitabh Bachchan’s voice. Dhanush returns to Bollywood in Aanand Rai’s Atrangi Re where co-stars with Akshay Kumar. 5. Famously one of the actors in Raanjhanaa Abhay Deol prophesied that history would not judge the film kindly. Abhay was wrong.

  • BTS' record-breaking single 'Butter' soars atop on India's first official international singles chart 

    The Indian Music Industry (“IMI”), the organisation that represents the recorded music industry in India, today released its first-ever International Top 20 Singles Chart India. The charts which are formulated using streaming figures of international singles are compiled by global music technology leaders BMAT will be updated weekly on Mondays by sundown. Every week from Friday to Thursday BMAT aggregates and consolidates the data from three leading international DSPs (Digital Service Providers) in the country – Spotify, Apple Music, and Amazon Music. The Top 20 chart is reviewed by the IMI Charts committee comprised of experts from record labels such as Universal Music Group, Sony Music Entertainment, Times Music, and Warner Music Group. Released on World Music Day on June 21, the first international chart sees South Korean juggernaut BTS' record-breaking second English single 'Butter' claiming the top spot on the chart. The widespread popularity of the biggest band in the world is known to all and India is not new to their music as well. In the last couple of years, their music has soared on streaming platforms beating some of the biggest Indian songs, at the time. On the very first chart itself, BTS claims not one but three spots with their songs on the Top 20 Singles Chart. 'Dynamite', their first-ever group English single, a retro disco-pop track that released in August 2020 and soared atop on Billboard Hot 100, is ranked at No. 8 on the chart whereas their Korean song 'Life Goes On' from their album 'BE', which also debuted at No. 1 on Hot 100, is at No. 20 in India on the chart. Dua Lipa's song 'Levitating' ranks at No. 2, followed by 'Montero (Call Me By Your Name)' by Lil Nas X at No. 3, 'Peaches' by Justin Bieber ft. Daniel Caesar and Giveon at No. 4 and 'good 4 u' by Olivia Rodrigo at No. 5 on the first chart in India. Take a look at the Top 20 songs: The IMI International Top 20 Singles Chart is host to the best in international music! Head to the link in bio to view the entire chart!@UMusicIndia @WarnerMusicIN @sonymusicindia @IndianMusicorg @DevrajSanyal @KakarOnline @JamRokr @soundbuzzer @VIKME @blaisefernandes pic.twitter.com/FASXb5wtWb — IMI Charts (@imicharts) June 21, 2021 The aim of the IMI International Top 20 Singles Chart is to make it easy for music enthusiasts to discover fresh and exciting music. “Sony Music India is delighted at the launch of the first-ever official Indian Music Industry charts. This is a landmark moment as music listeners can now get unbiased International Music Charts which are based on actual consumption data across leading streaming service providers. This will pave the way for the growth of global music amongst Indian fans with significantly higher engagement and also put India firmly on the Global Music map,” says Rajat Kakar, Managing Director India, Sony Music Entertainment. “The IMI charts are the first-ever formal launch by the Indian Music Industry to provide a concise, factual, and real-time chart system for its stakeholders to refer to. The mechanism to arrive at the charts is industry-grade and is collated from data analyzed across all verticals and as such will be the definitive charts for Indian consumers and global stakeholders. Times Music is proud to be part of this initiative,” adds Mandar Thakur, COO, Times Music. “Warner Music Group India is excited to be involved with this project. The exponential growth of smartphones coupled with a plethora of streaming services has taken international recorded music to the remotest part of India. International music today is no longer a metro or city-centric genre its pan India, and the IMI International Charts will be a true representation of what India listens to,” says  Jay Mehta, Managing Director, Warner Music Group. “I am delighted to launch the International Charts - an inaugural consumer-centric foray by IMI, which is largely a recorded music trade body. The charts represent what consumers in India are listening to. Globally charts are an effective search and discovery tool, I expect the same to happen in India. Given our country’s socio-eco-cultural diversity, the chart rollout will be in phases. Phase two will see the launch of regional charts in two Indian regional languages. Once we get the operations and formulae right, we plan to launch the IMI NATIONAL CHARTS - our endeavour to highlight the music consumers in India enjoy - on a weekly basis,” says Blaise Fernandes, CEO & President, IMI. “IMI is proud to present the first phase of our IMI India charts roll out, we have outsourced the entire process to BMAT, a recognised global brand in the music ecosystem, associated with music charts in over 22 countries. The DSP’s or streaming platforms share consumer data with BMAT. The data is then processed, as per international norms, giving the charts 100% transparency and accuracy,” adds Dema Therese Maria, Lead Charts & Certifications, IMI. “The introduction of the IMI International Top 20 Singles Chart is a great milestone for music in India and is an important step in the development of further charts to capture the full extent of India’s unique music culture and the vibrant and growing music industry in the market,” said Lewis Morrison, Head of Global Charts and Certifications, IFPI, in a statement. "As the official charts compilers for 22 countries alongside IFPI, we’re excited to be partnering with IMI to do India's charts. It’s a pleasure to be using our technical expertise to keep India up to date on their huge streaming market as well as help them make their culture more accessible to international consumers,” adds Enric Calabuig, VP Charts, BMAT. ALSO READ: BTS drops chaotic karaoke version of chart-topping single 'Butter' on World Music Day 2021

  • Making Aditya Srivastava the perfect cop for Haseen Dillruba

    Aditya Srivastava, who perfected the art of playing a cop on the iconic show CID, is back donning the khakis. In the reel world, his slaps have made serial killers cry out all their crimes. His bullets have cut through trees, trains, and traffic to hit the gangsters they're after. For years, all investigators and their first cousins have treated him as their role model, and the Gen-Z has found in him their fountain of memes. In the upcoming Netflix thriller, Haseen Dillruba, Aditya plays a cop of great conviction, exceptional guts but very low self-esteem. For when he's not busy chasing rogue criminals, he can be found chasing his supervisor's validation. Set in a small town, the movie begins with a blast that kills a young engineer, with a case of murder landing on Aditya's lap. While he was initially skeptical of playing yet another perfect cop, Aditya took the character and made it his own. Onset, he could be found randomly pointing finger guns at spot dadas, as he'd improvise and warm-up for his performance. Talking about his experience working with him, director Vinil Mathew said, “We have always seen Aditya Srivastav as the tough cop, but here we see him trying to play a toughie but failing miserably. It is interesting to see him get frustrated and helpless beneath the veneer of a super cop. Aditya Sir was quite the sport in playing this imperfect, flawed and layered role and improvised a lot with quirky renditions complete with his trademark humour. He is also a dream to work with - supremely talented, focused, and humble. With all the madness going on in the set, he would be that one calming factor." With a woman whose heart longs to live like words captured in a novel, entangled in the murder of her own husband, Netflix’s upcoming thriller promises lust, obsession, and deceit. The entertainer is all set to release on the platform on 2nd July. Bringing together some of the finest talent from the country, the film is produced by T Series and Colour Yellow Productions, directed by Vinil Mathew - set to release on 2nd July, 2021 only on Netflix. The talented cast comprises Taapsee Pannu, Vikrant Massey, Harshvardhan Rane, and Aditya Srivastava. ALSO READ: Here’s how Taapsee Pannu, Vikrant Massey and Harshvardhan Rane shot rafting scene in Haseen Dillruba

  • On World Music Day, Bhushan Kumar announces T-Series’ ‘Mixtape Rewind’ presented by Amazon Prime Music

    After successful seasons of Mixtape Hindi and Punjabi, T-Series gears up for its 3rd season of Hindi Mixtape but this time it goes ‘Rewind’. Produced by Bhushan Kumar’s T-Series and presented by Amazon Prime Music, ‘Mixtape Rewind’s first episode that premiers on 30th June will bring 10 beautiful episodes unveiling every week with songs that will make you reminisce the good old 90s and 2000s.   Bhushan Kumar chose World Music Day to unveil the trailer of the upcoming season which gives the audience a glimpse of the musical extravaganza they are set to experience in these episodes. Bringing together 20 talented Indian artists, the new season boasts renditions by Ash King, Armaan Malik, Benny Dayal, Darshan Rawal, Dhvani Bhanushali, Guru Randhawa, Jubin Nautiyal, Jonita Gandhi, Millind Gaba, Parampara Tandon, Payal Dev, Prakriti Kakkar, Palak Mucchal, Shilpa Rao, Sukriti Kakkar, Sachet Tandon, Tulsi Kumar, Tanishk Bagchi, Yasser Desai, Zara Khan. These artists bring fresh variations with their signature touch to timeless hits like Dil Hai Ki Manta Nahi, Dheere Dheere, Aye Mere Humsafar, Wada Raha Pyaar Se, Kya Mujhe Pyaar Hai, Beetein Lamhe and many more. To celebrate the music and launch the trailer, all 20 artists along with Bhushan Kumar, video director Ahmed Khan and music director Abhijit Vaghani went live on the T-Series Instagram page to interact with their fans and take the trailer live. While ‘Mixtape Rewind’ episodes will go live on the T-Series YouTube page every Wednesday from 30th June, the audio of every episode will first be exclusively launched on Amazon Prime Music. The new season will be available exclusively first on Amazon Prime Music for Prime members to enjoy an ad-free and hands-free voice-enabled experience with Alexa. Ahmed Khan, who directed the first season of T-Series Mixtape, helms the latest season, ‘Mixtape Rewind’. Every episode of this lavishly produced ‘Mixtape Rewind’ will be the perfect amalgamation of 90s – 2000s music which was romantic, melodious and peppy with a modern twist giving it a completely new & refreshed rendition. With composer Abhijit Vaghani along with the team at T-Series – Sonal Chawla, Shivam Chanana, Raj Chanana, and Vivin Sachdeva, who have conceptualized and developed Mixtape, this season is going to bring together Hindi music fraternity’s several young artists to add their charm to the iconic music. Bhushan Kumar, Chairman and Managing Director, T-Series, says, “We have all enjoyed listening to these songs for the past several years, but this time with a modern twist in Season 3 of Mixtape we have made the same songs that will be enjoyed by the new young listener. 20 artists with Abhijit Vaghani have made this season of Rewind groovier, playful and entertaining. We are thrilled to further cement our collaboration with Amazon Prime Music on this very special Rewind season of Mixtape. I can’t wait for audiences to listen and enjoy these reimagined hits.” Sahas Malhotra, Director, Amazon Prime Music said, “Amazon Prime Music and T-Series have a shared vision of bringing specially curated listening experiences for our customers and we are very excited to partner with T-Series for the third Mixtape partnership – Mixtape Rewind. The successful and overwhelming response by listeners from the previous Mixtape launches has inspired us to create the Rewind edition of Mixtape; with soulful renditions of iconic songs to unwind to the good old simpler times. This collaboration marks another step in our commitment to serving our listeners with delightful performances by their favorite artists, with all songs launching exclusively first on Amazon Prime Music.” Director Ahmed Khan asserts, “My team and I have tried to bring on screen all the fun, extravaganza of the songs and camaraderie of all the artists, the music, every instrument, every mood and emotion behind each song. It was fun to shoot with the T-Series team again.” Abhijit Vaghani, the music director of the season, concludes, “This season of T-Series ‘Mixtape Rewind’ is my favourite one so far. I worked on the songs we have all enjoyed listening to in our yesteryears! I got an opportunity to merge those classic melodies with my new upbeat genres and create a Mixtape for the younger audience to experience.” ALSO READ: Bhushan Kumar brings Nikki Tamboli and Millind Gaba together for the party song ‘Shanti’

  • Anushka reveals what makes her optimistic

    Anushka Sharma is currently in London with hubby Virat Kohli and their little one Vamika. The actress has been sharing pictures and videos from the British capital. Recently, the actress took to her Instagram stories to talk about her love for coffee. The actress often confesses her love for the humble drink every now and then.

  • Indian fans surprise Lee Min Ho on b'day

    Actor Lee Min Ho turned a year older today and fans or Minoz, as they are called, are leaving no stone unturned to make it even more special for their star. To mark the occasion, Lee Min Ho’s Indian fandom, Lee Min Ho Lovers India has arranged not one but several surprises.

  • Rhea Chakraborty: Always darkest before dawn

    Actress Rhea Chakraborty shared her Tuesday thought with her fans that was all about hope and triumph. Taking to her Instagram stories, she penned a few motivating lines and also shared a cute childhood photo while she was at it.

  • Srijit Mukherji to helm Taapsee's Shabaash Mithu

    Like most films that have been delayed due to the pandemic, the biopic of woman cricketer Mithali Raj, titled ‘Shabaash Mithu’ has also been waiting for its time to go on the floors.

  • Kriti channels inner Catwoman for photoshoot

    Ditching the fun, flirty and sunkissed photos, the actress shared a photo from her calendar shoot that she described as, "a darker shot as compared to everything else."

Movie Reviews

  • Movie Review: Sherni

    The man-animal conflict is increasing in our country, with each passing year, as more and more forest land is being taken over for residential and other purposes. It is a burning issue but surprisingly, very few films have dealt with this issue. NEWTON [2017] director Amit Masurkar takes up this initiative and comes up with SHERNI. The intriguing trailer and Vidya Balan’s towering presence has generated hype for the film. So does SHERNI manage to thrill and enlighten the audience? Or does it fail to impress? Let’s analyse. <img class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-1229360" src="https://www.bollywoodhungama.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/06/Movie-Review-Sherni.jpg" alt="Movie Review Sherni" width="720" height="450" /> SHERNI is the story of a tough forest officer intending to capture a tigress that has caused havoc in a region. Vidya Vincent (Vidya Balan) has joined as the Divisional Forest Officer (DFO) in the Bijaspur Forest Division. Her husband Pawan (Mukul Chadda) is away in Mumbai while she resides alone in a residence allotted by the Forest Department. She is not happy with the promotions and salary hikes that she has received in the last 9 years and wants to quit. But Pawan advises against doing so as his corporate job is on shaky grounds. One day, Vidya learns that a tiger was spotted close to a village. A few days later, the tiger kills a villager, leading to anger among the locals. Through the camera traps, the forest officers learn that it’s a tigress, named T12, which is behind the killing of the villager. The elections are around the corner and the sitting MLA, G K Singh (Amar Singh Parihar), makes it a political issue. He promises the village residents that he’ll kill the tigress and thus provide respite to them. On the other hand, P K Singh (Satyakam Anand) is an ex MLA who wants to get back to power. He provokes people against G K Singh. Amidst this madness, another villager is killed while she goes to collect wood in the forest. G K Singh then invites Ranjan Rajhans aka Pintu (Sharat Saxena), a self-proclaimed conservationist but who is actually a hunter. He desires to kill T12 to fulfil his hunger for hunting. Vidya, however, is not in favour of killing the animal. She advises the villagers to stay away from the forest. Using camera traps and tracking the pug marks, she hopes to find T12, tranquillize her and then release her in a nearby national park. Time is running out and it’s important she succeeds in her endeavour before it snowballs into a huge controversy and before Pintu hunts the tigress down. What happens next forms the rest of the film. Aastha Tiku's story is impressive. The issue keeps coming up in the news all the time but to see a whole film dedicated to it is rare. But Aastha Tiku's screenplay is bland and stretched. The initial portions are interesting but after a point, the proceedings seem repetitive. And the climax is the biggest downer. Amit Masurkar and Yashasvi Mishra's dialogues are simple and sharp. A few one-liners are unexpectedly funny and help to keep the interest going. Amit Masurkar's direction is average. He seems to love shooting in forests. NEWTON was majorly set in a jungle and so is SHERNI. A few scenes are exceptionally helmed. Amit also neatly explains the role of the forest officer, the concept of Forest Friends, how bureaucracy and government apathy can mess up things etc. On the flipside, he directs the film like a documentary. On top of that, the film’s run time is 130 minutes. It’s a bit too long and ideally, the film should have been under two hours. At certain points, nothing much is happening and we get to see repeated scenes of forest officers and others searching for the tigress. These scenes are sure to test the patience of the viewers. The finale moreover is disappointing and bewildering. A few questions remain unanswered and it leaves audiences confused as to what exactly happened. Lastly, Vidya Vincent’s character is not that impressive, and more on that later. SHERNI begins on a dry note. The opening credits are shown on a black screen with no music. It makes it clear that the film is for niche audiences. The beginning portions are engaging as audiences get acquainted with Vidya Vincent, her job, the search for the tigress etc. The humour quotient also works well. Two scenes that stand out in the first hour are when G K Singh storms an awareness programme of Hassan Noorani (Vijay Raaz), and P K Singh chasing Vidya’s senior Bansal (Brijendra Kala) in his office. The latter is quite amusing and novel, and would surely be appreciated. In the second half, one expects fireworks as the characters seem quite interesting and their conflicting motives were a perfect recipe for a captivating drama. Unfortunately, the makers don’t handle it well. The film ends on an unjustified and drab note. <span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong>Vidya Balan: “Entertainment is being RE-DEFINED today, very honestly if this…”| Amit Masurkar</strong></span> <iframe id="jwiframe" class="playerFrame" src="https://www.bollywoodhungama.com/videos/celeb-interviews/vidya-balan-entertainment-is-being-re-defined-today-very-honestly-if-this-amit-masurkar/?jwembed=1" width="800" height="340" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe> Vidya Balan as expected gets into the skin of her character and delivers yet another commendable performance. She looks and suits the part and makes one forget about her past performances. However, her character is not well fleshed out. The promotional campaign had drawn parallels between her character and that of the tigress. However, Vidya Vincent doesn’t really protest or rather, she doesn’t really roar when she witnesses injustice happening around. There are scenes where she’s just a silent bystander. In the end, one finally gets hopeful that she’ll take up matters into her own hands. But the makers don’t explain it well and hence the character loses its sheen. Sharat Saxena is credited immediately after Vidya in the opening credits and rightly so as he has an important part. He’s too good as a passionate hunter who can go to any lengths to achieve his goal. Vijay Raaz doesn’t raise laughs for a change and yet, he’s very impressive. Neeraj Kabi (Nangia) has a great screen presence. Sadly, even his character’s confusing actions seem unconvincing. Mukul Chadda is decent while Brijendra Kala is dependable. Anoop Trivedi (Pyare Lal) is funny and a great find. Satyakam Anand leaves a huge mark while Amar Singh Parihar does well. Gopal Dutt (Saiprasad) is wasted. Ila Arun (Pawan’s mother) is okay; her track in fact increases the film’s length. Suma Mukundan (Vidya’s mother) and Nidhi Diwan (Reshma; Hassan’s wife) don’t get much scope. Sampa Mandal (as the feisty villager Jyoti) is too good. Bandish Projekt's music is poor. <em>'Bandar Baant'</em> is the only song in the film. It is relegated to the background and fits well into the narrative. Benedict Taylor and Naren Chandavarkar's background score is minimal and impactful. Rakesh Haridas's cinematography is splendid and the forest scenes especially are very well captured. Devika Dave's production design is straight out of life. Manoshi Nath, Rushi Sharma and Bhagyashree Rajurkar's costumes are non-glamorous, in sync with the demand of the script. Futureworks and The Cirqus' VFX is great in the scenes of the tiger. But it is unrealistic in the bear sequence. Dipika Kalra's editing is not up to the mark. The film ought to have been shorter. On the whole, SHERNI rests on an interesting storyline and Vidya Balan’s performance. But the slow and documentary-style narrative, longer runtime and bewildering climax ruins the impact.

  • Movie Review: Sardar Ka Grandson

    The digital platform has been a boon for many films boasting of edgy and out of the box content. However, ever since the pandemic hit the world, we have seen some conventional family films also make its way on OTT. SARDAR KA GRANDSON, which has been released today on Netflix, joins this club. The trailer has sparked curiosity among viewers and it seems to be a feel-good entertainer. So does SARDAR KA GRANDSON manage to entertain and touch the hearts of the viewers? Or does it fail to impress? Let’s analyse. <img class="aligncenter wp-image-1217193 size-full" title="Movie Review Sardar Ka Grandson" src="https://www.bollywoodhungama.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/05/Movie-Review-Sardar-Ka-Grandson-3.jpg" alt="Movie Review Sardar Ka Grandson" width="720" height="450" /> SARDAR KA GRANDSON is the story of a devoted grandson trying to fulfil his ailing grandmother’s last wish. Amreek (Arjun Kapoor) resides in Los Angeles with his girlfriend Radha (Rakul Preet Singh). Both run a movers and packers company called ‘Gently Gently’. Amreek has a laidback and carefree attitude and doesn’t believe in owning up to his mistakes. This affects his work and also his relations with Radha. Fed up with his behaviour, Radha breaks up with him. Amreek is devastated. This is when his father, Gurkeerat aka Gurki (Kanwaljit Singh) calls him from his home in Amritsar, Punjab. He tells Amreek that he should return immediately as his grandmother, Sardar (Neena Gupta), is sick. Sardar, aged 90, has a tumour. The doctors advise Gurki that they should take her home as operating her at this age can prove fatal. Gurki realizes Sardar doesn’t have much time but he hides this fact from Sardar. Sardar, meanwhile, has a wish. She wants to go to Lahore, Pakistan and visit the house that she built with her husband, late Gursher Singh (John Abraham) in 1946. A year later, during Partition, Gursher dies while fighting the rioters. Sardar however escapes and reaches India. Since then, she has been missing Gursher and the house. Hence, it’s her desire to visit Pakistan so that she could see her ancestral house. Sardar tells Amreek about it. Gurki advises Sardar that she can’t travel in this condition. But Amreek realizes how much this means to her. He promises her that he’ll help fulfil her wish. He tries to get her visa. However, her application is rejected as she’s blacklisted from visiting Pakistan. This is because a few years ago, she had attacked a Pakistani official, Saqlain Niazi (Kumud Mishra) when she had gone to watch an India vs Pakistan cricket match. This is when Amreek learns that Radha has transplanted a nearly hundred-year-old tree in the USA. Amreek thus begins to learn about structural relocation and realizes that a lot of people have successfully lifted a house and transplanted it to a different location. Amreek requests help from both the government of India and Pakistan for his mission. Both decide to help him, in principle. Amreek then decides to visit Lahore. However, he hides about his plan from Sardar. He fears that if he fails in his endeavour, she’ll be heartbroken. Hence, Amreek pretends to go back to Los Angeles in front of Sardar. Amreek reaches Lahore and successfully is able to find Sardar’s house. But when he reaches there, he sees that the local authorities are about to demolish the structure! What happens next forms the rest of the film. Anuja Chauhan and Kaashvie Nair's story is lovely and quite promising. Anuja Chauhan and Kaashvie Nair's screenplay is first-rate. Yes, there are a few loose ends and something should have been done about it. But the writers score when it comes to emotional quotient. And that compensates for most shortcomings. Also, the message of harmony between India and Pakistan is well-woven. Amitosh Nagpal's dialogues are in sync with the film’s mood and the character’s personality traits. However, one dialogue of Amreek being a little crackpot because he was injured in childhood is repeated too many times needlessly. Kaashvie Nair's direction is superb. This was not an easy film to pull off. But Kaashvie comes out with flying colours especially in the emotional and dramatic scenes. The character of Sardar is the soul of the film and one can easily connect with her tragic past and her desire to see her Lahore house. However a few scenes defy logic. For instance, it’s amusing to see that Sardar’s house was left untouched for as long as 70 years in what seemed to be a congested and prime locality. In fact, when Amreek enters the house for the first time, one expects the house to be in a shabby condition but surprisingly, it doesn’t seem to have been abandoned since 7 decades. Also, the manner in which Sardar’s family cuts off internet and DTH connection from their residence so that Sardar doesn’t learn about Amreek’s mission is hard to digest. Lastly, a teenaged boy named Chhote (Mir Mehroos) starts helping Amreek. It’s quite touching the way he goes all out but why he does it or why does he oppose the demolition in the first place and his backstory are never established. SARDAR KA GRANDSON isn't really engrossing from the first sequence. It takes a while to get used to Amreek’s personality and behaviour. But things get better once he reaches Amritsar. His interactions with Sardar are lovely. The manner in which India’s Ministry of International Relations decides to help while being in foreshadows is too good. The second half presumably begins once Amreek reaches Lahore. The scene where he stops the demolition is hilarious. From here on, though the film drags, it is peppered with some very heartwarming and moving scenes that are sure to put a smile on one’s face and also leave one’s eyes moist. The last 20 minutes again could have been trimmed but at the same time, it is applause worthy. <img class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-1217194" src="https://www.bollywoodhungama.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/05/Movie-Review-Sardar-Ka-Grandson-1.jpg" alt="" width="720" height="450" /> Arjun Kapoor delivers a very fine performance. In fact, this is his best performance in the last 3-4 years. In the second half especially, he puts up a very good act. Neena Gupta is adorable. The film revolves around her and she enhances the impact. However, her character’s quirks reminds one of Rishi Kapoor in KAPOOR &amp; SONS [2016]. Rakul Preet Singh is hardly there in the first half and is quite impressive in the second hour. Kanwaljit Singh is dependable as always. Kumud Mishra does great as the antagonist. Shahid Lateef (Pakistani cop Rauf Khalid) is apt for the part. Mahika Patiyal (Pinky; Amreek’s sister) leaves a mark. Soni Razdan (Simi; Amreek's mother), Divya Seth Shah (Honey; Sardar’s second daughter-in-law) and Ravjeet Singh (Lovely) don’t get much scope. Arvinder Bhatti (Gurbaz Chacha) is wasted. Mir Mehroos gives a great performance but as aforementioned, one fails to understand why he is excitedly helping Amreek. The other actors who do well are Rajiv Kachroo (Pakistani High Commissioner Qureshi), Masood Akhtar (Khan sahab, who owns the house), Akashdeep Sabir (Contractor who organizes the demolition) and Priya Tandon (Pakistani journalist who interviews Amreek). Finally, John Abraham and Aditi Rao Hydari (Young Sardar) are cute in the flashback scenes. Tanishk Bagchi's music is not memorable but is in sync with the narrative. <em>'Naal Rab Ve'</em> is the best song of the lot and is well sung by Divya Kumar. <em>'Dil Nahin Todna'</em> serves as a nice opening credit song. <em>'Main Teri Ho Gayi'</em> is sweet while <em>'Jee Ni Karda'</em> is foot-tapping. Gulraj Singh's background score goes well with the film’s mood. Mahendra J Shetty's cinematography is appropriate. Subhash Shinde's prosthetic make-up for Neena Gupta is convincing though it could have been slightly more realistic. Sujeet Subhash Sawant and Sriram Kannan Iyengar's production design is authentic. Sheetal Sharma's costumes are real yet glamorous. Futureworks' VFX is quite good. A lot of VFX is used in the later part of the film and it’s neat. Maahir Zaveri's editing could have been better. The film is 139 minutes long and should have been shorter by at least 10 minutes. On the whole, SARDAR KA GRANDSON is a heart-warming, touching tale that has its emotions in the right place. It might not be logical at some places but it compensates for this shortcoming with the emotional quotient, message, touching climax and performances. Also, it’s a clean entertainer and deserves to be watched with your whole family. Recommended!

  • Movie Review: Radhe - Your Most Wanted Bhai

    A Salman Khan film is special. RADHE - YOUR MOST WANTED BHAI - directed by Prabhu Deva - is in news for varied reasons. First and foremost, it’s a Salman Khan movie and he teams up with Prabhu Deva yet again. Also, the hybrid release, which is being viewed by one and all, more so within the film fraternity. <img class="aligncenter wp-image-1216302 size-full" title="Movie Review: Radhe - Your Most Wanted Bhai" src="https://www.bollywoodhungama.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/05/Movie-Review-Radhe-–-Your-Most-Wanted-Bhai-2.jpg" alt="Movie Review: Radhe - Your Most Wanted Bhai" width="720" height="450" /> Let’s begin with the plot, without revealing spoilers... RADHE narrates the story of an honest cop - Radhe [Salman Khan] - who wants to rid the city of drug menace. The drug lord - Rana [Randeep Hooda] - is ruthless and eliminates anyone and everyone who crosses his path. Radhe and Rana come face to face at regular intervals. Will Radhe put an end to Rana’s nefarious activities? Based on South Korean crime drama THE OUTLAWS, RADHE rests on a clichéd plot and predictable situations, but banking entirely on Salman’s star power to camouflage the deficiencies. The viewer can guesstimate what’s in store next, but the fast-moving narrative coupled with some stylishly executed action pieces keep you hooked. RADHE has its share of hiccups. The romance between Salman and Disha looks forced. Ditto for Jackie Shroff’s track, which could’ve done with some electrifying moments. If the intention was to keep the character light, nope, that doesn’t really work. Director Prabhu Deva is entrusted with an oft-repeated plot and there’s not much he can do. The confrontations between Salman and Randeep show the director’s expertise, so do the sequences between Salman and Azaan, but moments such as these are extremely few. The latter half, especially, could’ve done with some interesting twists and turns. Also, after a point, one genuinely feels that the writers have run out of ideas. The climax is arresting, but we have seen far better and more exciting action-packed endings in Salman’s films in the past. <span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong>Salman Khan: “Radhe has got NOTHING to do with Wanted, ye Wanted ka BAAP hai”</strong></span> <iframe id="jwiframe" class="playerFrame" src="https://www.bollywoodhungama.com/videos/celeb-interviews/salman-khan-radhe-has-got-nothing-to-do-with-wanted-ye-wanted-ka-baap-hai/?jwembed=1" width="800" height="340" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe> Salman Khan is fiery and it is his presence that keeps you glued to the proceedings, despite the shortcomings. He is in super form, but, sadly, the writing doesn’t do justice to his stardom. Randeep Hooda is menacing and delivers a convincing performance. Disha Patani looks good, but her presence is purely ornamental. Jackie Shroff is funny initially, but his portions don’t really work after a point. The remaining actors are passable. The soundtrack is a plus. However, the two best tracks - ‘Seeti Maar’ and the title song - are reserved for the latter half. While the former is already popular, the title track is energetic. Cinematography captures the mood of the film right. The action sequences - although well executed - get gory and brutal at times. On the whole, RADHE - YOUR MOST WANTED BHAI is a Salman Khan show all the way. The film has some massy moments, which would have attracted ample footfalls at single screens specifically. However, the clichéd plot and predictable proceedings act as a speed breaker. RADHE is strictly for Salman Khan fans.

  • Movie Review: The Big Bull

    Actor Abhishek Bachchan’s career has seen a lot of ups and downs. But one can’t deny that he is a powerful performer, as proven by his work in films like YUVA [2004], DHOOM [2004], SARKAR [2005], GURU [2007], DOSTANA [2008], PAA [2009], BOL BACHCHAN [2012], etc. After taking a break of nearly 2 ½ years, he returned to the big screen with a stellar act in MANMARZIYAAN [2018]. In the past one year, he has made his mark on digital with the web series BREATHE: INTO THE SHADOWS [2020] and the crazy comedy LUDO [2020]. Now he’s back with another web venture, THE BIG BULL. The trailer has been liked and there’s a curiosity to see what it has to offer, despite the subject being similar to SCAM 1992, arguably the most successful web series of India. So does THE BIG BULL manage to stand out and impress the audiences? Or does it fail? Let’s analyse. <img class="aligncenter wp-image-1205922 size-full" title="Movie Review: The Big Bull" src="https://www.bollywoodhungama.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/04/The-Big-Bull-7.jpg" alt="Movie Review: The Big Bull" width="720" height="450" /> THE BIG BULL is the story of a common man’s journey from rags to riches. The year is 1987. Hemant Shah (Abhishek Bachchan), a resident of Bombay, is working at Bal Kala Kendra on a modest salary. He is in love with Priya (Nikita Dutta), his neighbour but since he’s not financially secure, he’s apprehensive about asking her father for her hand in marriage. One day, a parent of one of the kids, who comes to practice at Bal Kala Kendra, tells Hemant that after selling stocks of Bombay Textile, he’s able to earn a nice moolah. This makes Hemant curious about the world of stocks. Meanwhile, his brother Viren Shah (Sohum Shah) loses a large amount of money in stocks. Viren is in debt and Hemant decides to invest in Bombay Textile’s shares. But he does his homework before doing so. This enables Hemant to not just make Viren debt-free but also earn a neat little profit. In no time, Hemant enters the world of stocks and starts working for a stock trader named Kantilal (Hitesh Rawal). Hemant aspires to have a trading account but as per the rules, he needs to pay Rs. 10 lakhs for it. In order to earn the said amount, Hemant joins hands with union leader Rana Sawant (Mahesh Manjrekar) of Premier Auto. His insider trading activity soon helps him earn Rs. 10 lakhs. Hemant starts to now manipulate stocks and even gets banks on board to exploit the loopholes in the system. All this takes the sensex to dizzying heights. Thus, he becomes a hero of sorts among stock brokers. Since his financial condition improves, he marries Priya. While everyone is hailing Hemant Shah, Meera Rao (Ileana DCruz), the finance journalist at India Times newspaper, is least impressed. She’s confident that Hemant is illegally making money at the stock exchange. She writes critical articles about him. And one day, she stumbles upon shocking evidence about Hemant’s nefarious activities. What happens next forms the rest of the film. Kookie Gulati and Arjun Dhawan's story is interesting. It is inspired from the life of Harshad Mehta, the infamous stock broker, and his experiences were fascinating, cinematically. Kookie Gulati and Arjun Dhawan's screenplay is effective at most places. The writers have tried their best to make the goings-on as entertaining and as dramatic as possible for a better impact. They succeed, but not fully, for two reasons. One, they have edited out several important events from Hemant Shah’s life and have made it too fast-paced. Secondly, the comparisons with SCAM 1992 take away the impact to some extent. Ritesh Shah's dialogues, however, are sharp. Kookie Gulati's direction is decent. He had the challenge of not just keeping the goings-on entertaining but also easy to comprehend. This is because not everyone understands the concept of stocks and shares. And Kookie succeeds to an extent at both the aspects. On the flipside, one can’t help but draw parallels with SCAM 1992. Even if one tries his/her best, one can’t forget the Pratik Gandhi-starrer web series as it was highly memorable. And it was handled in a much better manner. One wishes if THE BIG BULL had released before SCAM 1992 as then, it would have been more entertaining and interesting for viewers. Now, since most of the target audience of THE BIG BULL have already seen SCAM 1992, one already knows more or less the entire story. Hence, one knows in advance what’s going to happen. Thankfully, the writers have fictionalized some plot points and added a twist in the end which will leave the viewers surprised. Even if one keeps the SCAM 1992 comparisons aside, the film has another major hiccup. It moves too fast. Some developments are never explained properly. For instance, one gets a hint that Hemant’s father was upset with him and had even kicked him out of the house. But what exactly happened is never explained in the film. Then, Hemant starting his own consultancy, named Mile High, happens all of a sudden, leaving viewers bewildered. The character of Sanjeev Kohli (Samir Soni) is crucial to the narrative but the writers and director don’t give him the required due. <span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong>Abhishek Bachchan: “I’d like to collaborate with Carryminati on…”| The Big Bull | Ajay Devgn</strong></span> <iframe id="jwiframe" class="playerFrame" src="https://www.bollywoodhungama.com/videos/celeb-interviews/abhishek-bachchan-id-like-to-collaborate-with-carryminati-on-the-big-bull-ajay-devgn/?jwembed=1" width="800" height="340" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe> THE BIG BULL has an average opening. The entry scene of Abhishek Bachchan should have been powerful but instead, it’s bland. The film thankfully gets better with the scene where Hemant walks with Priya at night and the former finds out about Viren’s debt. While the rise of Hemant is depicted neatly and quickly, what stand out are the scenes that come just before the end of the first hour. The song <em>'Ishq Namazaa'</em> is very well shot and keeps the interest going. Hemant’s experience at the party in Delhi is intriguing. The scene of the Income Tax Department’s raid and the interview scene of Hemant and Meera run parallel and is the best part about the first hour. In the second half, things get better as Meera attempts to uncover the truth based on the leads that she gets. This is also the time when Hemant gets on shaky ground and tries to his best to get out of the mess. The last 30 minutes is when the film really gets better. The press conference scene is treated dramatically and is bound to arrest attention. The twist in the climax is unexpected. Abhishek Bachchan gives a commendable performance and he also underplays at several places. He is essaying the part of a flamboyant, egoistic man but he understands that it doesn’t mean he has to go overboard. Interestingly, the actor had done a similar role in the past, in GURU [2007], and the actor ensures that one is not reminded of that performance when they see THE BIG BULL. However, the brief shots of him laughing manically seem unintentionally funny and should have been done away with, ideally. Ileana DCruz hardly gets any scope in the first half but shines in the second half. However, she looks very unconvincing as an old lady in the present-day track. Nikita Dutta is lovely and leaves a huge mark. Sohum Shah is, as expected, dependable and maintains a strong position from start to finish. Mahesh Manjrekar and Samir Soni are decent in their special appearances. Supriya Pathak Shah (Amiben; Hemant and Viren's mother) is convincing. Saurabh Shukla (Manu Malpani) gets his act right. Ram Kapoor (Ashok Mirchandani) has limited screen time but he rocks the show. Shishir Sharma (Rajesh Mishra; Meera's boss) is fair while Lekha Prajapati (Tara; Viren's wife) and Hitesh Rawal get limited scope. The same goes for Sumit Vats (Hari). Kanan Arunachalam (Venkateshwar) is too good especially in the scene where he spills the beans. Tripti Shankhdhar (Ashima; who meets Meera in the train) and Rio Kapadia (NCC MD Singh) register an impact despite being there for just one scene. Music is average but is well placed. <em>'Ishq Namaza'</em> is soulful and shot beautifully. The title track plays in the background in some important scenes in the first half. <em>'Hawaon Mein'</em> is played during the end credits. Sandeep Shirodkar's background score adds to the drama. Vishnu Rao's cinematography is appropriate. Durgaprasad Mahapatra's production design is rich. Darshan Jalan and Neelanchal Ghosh's costumes are reminiscent of the late 80s and early 90s era. NY VFXWaala's VFX is praiseworthy. Dharmendra Sharma's editing is too slick and quick at places. On the whole, THE BIG BULL gets affected due to the comparisons with SCAM 1992. Yet, it stands out at several places and works due to the performances, the dramatic moments and the unexpected finale.

  • Movie Review: Godzilla Vs Kong (English)

    The Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) and DC Universe has made it clear once and for all that creating film series and getting popular characters from different films together is a great formula. Warner Bros and Legendary Pictures probably got inspired by this aspect and created a MonsterVerse. After delivering three films in this universe – GODZILLA [2014], KONG: SKULL ISLAND [2017] and GODZILLA: KING OF THE MONSTERS [2019], the fourth and the highly awaited film is here – GODZILLA VS. KONG. The trailer has got a great response and the memes and jokes surrounding the epic battle in the film have contributed to the film’s hype. So does GODZILLA VS. KONG manage to give audiences a highly entertaining time? Or does it fail to impress? Let’s analyse. <img class="aligncenter wp-image-1200151 size-full" title="Movie Review: Godzilla Vs Kong (English)" src="https://www.bollywoodhungama.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/03/Movie-Review-Godzilla-Vs-Kong-English.jpg" alt="Movie Review: Godzilla Vs Kong (English)" width="750" height="450" /> GODZILLA VS. KONG is the story of the gigantic clash of two titans. It is a usual day at the Pensacola, Florida complex of Apex Cybernetics. Suddenly, Godzilla attacks the company facility without any provocation and causes massive destruction. Till now, Godzilla was seen as the saviour of the humanity but this episode makes him the villain of the world. Meanwhile, in Skull Island, Kong has been kept in a very wide enclosure by Monarch. Dr Ilene Andrews (Rebecca Hall) works in the facility as an anthropological linguist. She has been trying her best to communicate with Kong and to understand his behavioural patterns. She is surprised when she finds out one day that her adopted mute daughter, Jia (Kaylee Hottle) manages to forge a bond with Kong and communicate with him. Dr. Nathan Lind (Alexander Skarsgård) is hired by Apex’s chiefs, Ren Serizawa (Shun Oguri) and Walter Simmons (Demián Bichir), based on his research and a book on the titans. Ren and Walter plan to lure Godzilla into the Hollow Earth through an opening in Antarctica and then destroy him there. Godzilla and Kong have a very old rivalry and they feel that if they manage to get Kong at Hollow Earth, Godzilla would follow and their purpose could be achieved. In no time, Monarch gives the go-ahead to take Kong to Antarctica for the mission. Kong is chained and taken into a vast ship. Dr Ilene, Jia, Dr Nathan and a top Apex executive, Maia Simmons (Eiza González), also accompany Kong in the ship. Dr Ilene orders to take a detour so that they don’t pass through Godzilla’s usual route while in sea. Yet, Godzilla senses Kong’s presence and it attacks the ape. Kong manages to save himself but gets grievously injured. With the help of Jia, he manages to recover. Meanwhile, in Florida, Bernie Hayes (Brian Tyree Henry), an Apex employee is running a podcast wherein he’s telling his listeners that all is not well in the company. He finds a fan in Madison (Millie Bobby Brown), the daughter of Monarch scientists Mark (Kyle Chandler) and the late Emma Russell. She manages to track Bernie down. Bernie shares with her that a mysterious shipment is about to be sent to Apex complex in Hong Kong. To find out more about it, they infiltrate into the almost-destroyed Apex facility in Pensacola, Florida. Both are also joined by Madison’s nerdy friend, Josh Valentine (Julian Dennison). What happens next forms the rest of the film. Terry Rossio, Michael Dougherty and Zach Shields's story is entertaining and has all the ingredients of a grand, cinematic spectacle. Eric Pearson and Max Borenstein's screenplay is highly effective. The focus is firmly kept on the battle between the two monsters and the build-up. A few human characters don’t get the deserved screen space but the writers compensate for it to some extent by giving some excellent scenes to the track of Jia and that of Bernie, Madison and Josh. Dialogues contribute a lot to the humour, especially in the track of Bernie. Adam Wingard's direction is simple and commercial. He makes the whole experience palatable for all kinds of viewers, especially for the masses and family audiences. What’s praiseworthy is that he packs in a lot in just 113 minutes. Though both monsters come face to face for a limited time, the build-up is done in a superb fashion. Also once they start fighting, viewers get totally involved. In fact, he has ably handled the climax and it is sure to give a <em>paisa vasool</em> experience to the viewers. On the flipside, to see Godzilla as the villain might not go down well with a section of viewers, especially those who have been emotionally invested with the monster in the previous MonsterVerse films. Secondly, in the process of keeping the focus on Godzilla and Kong, the villain track suffers. The antagonists hardly get time to shine. As a result, their back story and their character motivation are never explained properly. Not just them, even the characters of Dr Ilene and Dr Lind suffer from weak characterization. Lastly, it’s bewildering to see how soon Kong is allowed to leave Skull Island and travel to Antarctica. Knowing the dangers that Kong has in the open sea from Godzilla, a few minutes should have been spent to show Monarch and Apex management discussing the pros and cons of the mission. <img class="aligncenter size-full wp-image-1200156" src="https://www.bollywoodhungama.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/03/Movie-Review-Godzilla-Vs-Kong-English1.jpg" alt="" width="750" height="450" /> GODZILLA VS. KONG begins on a very sweet note and the tone suddenly changes into a shocking one as we realize that though Kong is roaming free in Skull Island, he’s actually caged from all sides. The attack on the Apex facility in Florida sets the mood. Much of the first hour is spent on introducing the characters, their motives and of course, the grand voyage in the sea with Kong. The first battle between Godzilla and Kong is highly entertaining. But the first half is not just about thrill and action. The emotional bond between Kong and Jia is sweet and adds a lot to the film’s appeal. Post-interval, a lot of unanswered questions get answered. Kong’s experience in Hollow Earth and Antarctica is also something to watch out for. But as expected, the best is reserved for the finale. The climax battle is epic in a lot of ways. The film ends on a completely justified note. Speaking of performances, Rebecca Hall underplays her part very well. She gives her best even though her character is not fully developed. Kaylee Hottle is like the soul of the film. She expresses beautifully with her eyes and expressions and all her scenes are memorable. Alexander Skarsgård is fine and gets very limited scope. Brian Tyree Henry is highly entertaining as the talkative conspiracy theorist. He gets to mouth some of the best lines in the film. Millie Bobby Brown puts up a confident act. Julian Dennison is entertaining. Shun Oguri and Demián Bichir are okay as the villain. Shun Oguri plays a character named Serizawa and probably this means he’s probably related to Ishirō Serizawa, the Monarch hero who sacrificed his life in GODZILLA: KING OF THE MONSTERS. But this connection is not mentioned in the film, not even for a second. Kyle Chandler essays the part from the previous film in the series and this time, his role is limited to that of a cameo. Eiza González suits the part. Junkie X L's music score is thrilling. The Sound mixing also enhances the entertainment by many notches. Ben Seresin's cinematography is stunning and adds to the fun and madness. Tom Hammock and Owen Paterson's production design is rich and superior, just as the film demanded. Ann Foley's costumes are realistic. Action is just right and thankfully, it’s neither too gory nor violent. VFX is one of the pillars of the film. The special effects are out of the world and one can see that the attempt has been to go one level up as compared to other films of the series. Hence, this time, Kong’s expressions are even more detailed and vibrant. At the same time, the destruction of the city in the climax is also quite extreme and unbelievable. Josh Schaeffer's editing is razor sharp as the film moves at a quick speed. On the whole, GODZILLA VS. KONG is a <em>paisa vasool</em> entertainer which would be best enjoyed on the big screen. The film is laced with a great story and build-up and the climax battle between the monsters is amazing. At the box office, the film has taken the best start for any film since the lockdown, despite it being a mid-week release. In the days to come, it’s sure to attract more and more family and mass audiences. The rise in the Covid cases may have some negative impact but the opening has made it clear that the impact will be minimal.

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