Modern Times (1936)

STORY – 1
DIRECTOR – 1
ACTOR – 1
MUSIC – 1
CULT – 1

 

VERDICT – 5/5

 
PROS –
1) The tragi-comedy tale of 2 tramps in the time of the Great Depression.
2) “The Nonsense Song”
3) The movie extensively used huge props of machines. The scene where the Tramp got swallowed through the cogs of the giant machine, and the roller-skating scene are remarkable achievements in cinematography.
4) There are prominent signs of dystopian science-fiction. The factory boss using CCTV to monitor the factory’s work. The “feeding machine” introduced by a mad scientist to save meal breaks is satirical but equally dystopian.

 

CONS –
N/A

 

QUOTE –
Big Bill: We ain’t burglars – we’re hungry.

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Super Deluxe (2019)

STORY – 1
DIRECTOR – 1
ACTOR – 1
MUSIC – 1
CULT – 1

 

VERDICT – 5/5

 
PROS –
1) An anthology movie with a non-linear storyline where paths of different characters cross each other. It’s a Tarantino movie not directed by Tarantino.
2) The influence of Bappi Lahiri’s music in contemporary cinema can’t be undermined. His 80s music is aging like fine-wine.
3) A movie with great star-cast, however, the performance of Vijay Sethupathi stands out.
4) The Tamil instrumental rendition of the Superman Theme played during the mattress flying scene.
5) It’s a must-watch for cinema connoisseur. So far one of the best movie of this year.

 

CONS –
N/A

 

QUOTE –
Leela: You held on to a statue of Jesus during the tsunami and became a Christian. What would you have become had you held on to a teddy bear?

Once Upon a Time in… Hollywood (2019)

STORY – 1
DIRECTOR – 1
ACTOR – 1
MUSIC – 0
CULT – 1

 

VERDICT – 4/5

 
PROS –
1) One can keep guessing how Tate murders will be shown in the movie only to realize that it’s a Tarantino movie and we are watching a piece of alternate history from his point of view. In Inglourious Basterds (2009), he gave his personalized treatment to Hitler, this time it was Manson Family‘s turn.
2) Leonardo DiCaprio – the last movie star of Hollywood – gave one of his best comedy performance.
3) A great homage to 1960s Italian-Westerns with fake movie posters and plot details.

 
CONS –
1) Too much archival footage, too much narration, too much radio commercials.
2) QT movies are revered for their soundtrack but this movie disappoints.
3) All in all, this is not Tarantino’s best work where he poured his soul. This is a second rung QT movie in the league of Jackie Brown (1997). QT loves pop-culture/movie references. This movie is so much laden with such references that it’s more about references than the actual movie.
4) There are a few scenes which are not leading anywhere. Although the same formula worked out great in Pulp Fiction (1994), but it didn’t work this time. One cannot make a cult film intentionally.
5) The missing Tarantinoesque scene. The Bruce Dern scene was very close to that but it fizzled out in the end.
6) The entire scene where Sharon Tate is in a movie theater watching The Wrecking Crew (1968) was completely futile. Al Pacino scene was poorly written.

 
QUOTE –
When you come to the end of the line, with a buddy who is more than a brother and a little less than a wife, getting blind drunk together is really the only way to say farewell.

The Tashkent Files (2019)

STORY – 1
DIRECTOR – 0
ACTOR – 0
MUSIC – 0
CULT – 1

 

VERDICT – 2/5

 
PROS –
1) Very informative & an absolute eye-opener revealing hidden facts on Shastri’s death. The death of a PM certainly needs a widespread discussion even with conspiracy theories.
2) HJ Bhabha death, The Mitrokhin Archive, etc are some of the most noteworthy points of the movie which cannot be undermined.

 

CONS –
1) Even with a talented pool of actors, there is less acting and more over-acting.
2) The primary structure is clearly copied from 12 Angry Men (1957)
3) Forgettable soundtrack.

 

QUOTE –
“rajneeti mein jeetna bahut zaroori hai, kyunki haare hue log desh ki taqdeer nahin badal sakte”

Parasite (2019)

STORY – 1
DIRECTOR – 1
ACTOR – 1
MUSIC – 1
CULT – 1

 

VERDICT – 5/5

 
PROS –
1) Hollywood studios busy with recycling exhausted plots and making reboots can learn a lot from South Korean cinema. Director Bong Joon-ho returns with a complex thriller which is hard to be described in a single sentence. A social commentary in the form of an engrossing thriller.
2) The jaw-dropping basement revelation scene.
3) The birthday party murder rampage
4) Ki-taek’s Plan monologue.

 
CONS –
N/A

 

QUOTE –
Ki-taek: You know what kind of plan that never fails? No plan. No plan at all. You know why? Because life cannot be planned.

John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum (2019)

STORY – 1
DIRECTOR – 1
ACTOR – 1
MUSIC – 0
CULT – 0

 

VERDICT – 3/5

 
PROS –
1) Great action scenes – continuing the legacy in the 3rd installment of John Wick.
2) Tuco gun trick by John Wick: a subtle homage to an iconic movie.
3) There is a strong element of cassette futurism throughout the high table: typewriters, rotary landline phones, switchboard operator, etc.
4) The movie series will be remembered for its exquisite lingo in the crime world: High table, Deconsecrated, Excommunicado, etc.
5) The return of the Bowery King in the climax.

 

CONS –
1) Unnecessary Morocco subplot
2) John Wick is a lone wolf. The presence of Halle Berry as his side-kick in Morocco is annoying.

 
QUOTE –
Winston: Si vis pacem, para bellum.

Sacred Games (Season 2)

STORY – 0
DIRECTOR – 1
ACTOR – 1
MUSIC – 0
CULT – 0

 

VERDICT – 2/5

 
PROS –
1) An Osho like Guru running a drug-fueled mission to bring Sat Yug post-nuclear winter. The plan is executed by a Muhammad bin Qasim fanatic, completing his dream of Gazwa-E-Hind.
2) Full of smart references like Dawood Ibrahim, Karan Johar, RGV, Kangana Ranaut, Divya Bharti, etc.

 
CONS –
1) The entire Kenya sub-plot doesn’t add anything to the story.
2) The cliffhanger ending is pointless as all the secrets are already out. Also, with most the main character being dead, what’s left for next season?
3) The mob-lynching plot is clearly part of Anurag Kashyap’s personal outrage rather than adding anything to the story.

 
QUOTE –
Aham Brahmasmi