March 6, 2018

R.I.P. Sridevi

source unknown

The loss of Sridevi had (has*) the world reeling. Like a pillar came crashing down. Whether you identified as a fan or not, her brilliance was inescapable. We always knew she was iconic, but after her death it truly came to surface just how colossal her impact was. She was a cornerstone of cinema throughout the country, a true Pan-Indian superstar - a rare feat. Through the garish, misogynistic '80s and '90s, she quietly built herself a throne adding hit after hit to her crown. She turned rain, choodiyaan, mountains, braids, lip gloss, white clothes, fog, sarees and big brown eyes into poetry.  She wasn't part of an era, she trailblazed an era. With her death that era comes to a heartbreaking close.

She didn't just play characters, she became them. Something about her artistry compelled us to suspend reality and embrace them. They entered our lives, grew with us and nestled into our hearts.  She gifted us Reshmi's endearing antics (Sadma), Manju's hilarious but fierce independence (Chaalbaaz),  Pooja's vivacious personality (Lamhe), Chandni's captivating charm (Chandni) and so so many more. And just as those women began to collect dust, she gave us Shashi's anxious entrepreneurial spirit (English Vinglish) and Devki's fiery conviction (Mom) reminding us of her longstanding place in our hearts.

It's mind boggling that such a quiet, introverted woman had the ability to deliver these explosive, colorful characters.  I read somewhere that Saroj Khan called her "light bulb" because she could switch on, dazzle and shut right off as soon as the job was done. The editor of Filmfare once wrote, "If acting is magic without props, then Sridevi has mastered the art." It's like we were unknowingly chasing an enigma, patiently waiting for her to crack and share with us the method to her madness. True to her craft, she never broke character leaving our queries forever unanswered.

It is so ironic that she kept her life so guarded while her death was anything but. I've been mulling over why this seems to feel personal almost universally. I think it's because we never realized just how deeply we treasured the magic she so seamlessly weaved into our lives for decades. There was so much of her left to celebrate.

In honor of celebrating, below is a slew of super random scenes I've always harbored in my little Bollywood heart. (I had no idea I cherished so many)

*Disclaimer* This isn't a list of her iconic scenes, but just random things about her that I appreciate and want to share with you.

December 12, 2013

Dedh Ishqiya: Hamari Atariya

You guys. YOU. GUYS.

I can't. I just cannot.

Madhuri Dixit, Rekha Bhardwaj vocals, semi-classical dancing. Just kill me now (after you watch and comment).

Is it horrible of me that I'm jealous of those (talented) little girls who got to dance with her? At the same time I'm also glad that today's kids get to see/experience the greatness that is her.

Check out the still and trailer after the jump:

October 22, 2013

Ram-Leela: Ram Chahe Leela

So this happened.


If I was cool I would think Ram-Leela paid me for all these posts considering it's all I blog about.

Here's the much awaited item song from Priyanka Chopra.

Ram Chahe Leela: 

I can't say underwhelming, but expectations weren't exceeded either. This means expectations were met and one should note that expectations were high. (Expectations. That's a really weird word... keep saying it. "expectation, expectation..."). Anyway thoughts??

P.S. Lady Rai-Bachchan was originally approached for this number. She's to SLB like Kajol is to K-Jo. No? Anyhow, I can't decide what that would have looked like. She's a phenomenal dancer, no doubt but for whatever reason I don't feel upset she didn't do the number?

October 8, 2013

Ram-Leela: Lahu Munh Lag Gaya

Aankhon Ki Gustakhiyaan: The Sensual Version

After we all realized Lahu Munh would take place in a Holi setting, it was pretty obvious that SLB was going to go for an Aankhon ki approach (and lord, did he). Both a slow song against a festive backdrop. Again, not complaining but really there are some scene for scenes similarities. Am I just a die-hard HDDCS fan or is it obvious to most? Also, this movie is an adaptation of Romeo and Juliet (how original) and I'm going to go ahead and assume this is the "masquerade ball," which is really kind of brilliant. Sanjay really is the Baz Luhrman of India. I can't be the first to say that right? Yup, I'm not, but I digress.

With this and Nagada Sang, Deepika keeps proving this role was for her. Really imagine Kareena or Priyanka attempting these numbers? It would kill it and totally not in the way Deepika is.

October 1, 2013

Ram-Leela: Nagada Sang Dhol Bhaje

Wait a minute... deja vu. Like seeeerious deja vu (lighting diyas in the intro, garba, epic pagdi tying, etc. etc.). But wait? Why don't I care?

First of all a thousand applause because finally Deepika proves why she's the it girl this year and gets to show off her dancing*  that I have screamed about and damn, homegirl is FIERCE (in spite of being injured while shooting this.)

Secondly, considering the song title has 'dhol baje' (was this a really desperate attempt or super brilliant tactic by Sanjay? Is HDDCS that long forgotten or is he using its success?) was I the only one underwhelmed by the beat?

Such spectacular costumes, sets, choreography, cinematography, editing. I hate this word, but: epic. Expectations met, Sanjay. Well done. Hope it continues. I stayed up for this release and it was well worth it.

A teaser of Priyanka Chopra's look from the item was released recently as well:

Another song  from the film after the jump:

Trailers, Promos and Friends: Dhoom 3

I'll be honest I have never been a fan of the Dhoom franchise but two things to note:

  1. Aamir Khan as a villain is going to be de-licious and reminiscent of Naseeruddin Shah in Krish. I suspect.
  2. There's no denying this looks sleek as hell. 

Trailers, Promos and Friends: Rajjo

The small budget film stars Kangana, as you saw and yes that WAS Mahesh Manjrekar portraying a hijra/enuch. It's directed by debutant director Vishwas Patil and, the best part, music by Uttam Singh. In case you're scratching your head wondering who, he's the guy who composed for underrated sountracks like Pinjar, Gadar: Ek Prem Katha, Baghban among many more. 

The film is said to be about the gradual demise of Kotha culture in modern times set against1 a hindu-muslim love story. It will be interesting to see how a plot revolving around a mujrewali fares. It could go in any direction be it harsh, trashy or heartwarming. There's really no telling considering there isn't much background on the crew.

 I must say it is refreshing to see Kangana in a role unrelated to substance about. And is anyone else pleasantly surprised by her dancing? She's actually graceful? The boldest thing about this movie though, is not her or Mahesh's role, but the fact that it will release the same weekend against SLB's magnum opus Ram-Leela. What. Obviously the makers are not looking to overtake Ram-Leela, but surely they feel confident enough in their film to expect to make money the same weekend as SLB's film. That's incredibly incredibly confident. 

September 28, 2013

Remembering Yash Chopra

Yesterday/two days ago was Yash Chopra's B-day so in honor of it, I wrote a little tribute post

Yash Chopra, the master.

Here's a stunning montage of his heroines set to a monologue by him about the beauty of women.

The man was a craftsman. He was so skilled in creating a well balanced formula that yielded gorgeous, classic Bollywood cinema. Nobody did/does it like him.

Here's an example of what I, personally, believe to be Bollywood perfection. Spot on music, the melodious Lata crooning Sahir Ludhianvi's (what a master of words) beautiful lyrics poetically blended with great cinematography on the enchanting Rakhee subtly emoting. He encapsulated the beauty of Desi culture effortlessly. Perfection. Watch.

A while ago Yash Raj Films teamed up with Karol Bagh Saree House and created the label Diva'ni. In honor of the late showman's birthday, the label held a show where nine of his leading ladies walked the ramp with Shahrukh Khan as host. 


More pics and quotes from the event after the jump:

September 27, 2013

But Why

Whether you hate or love Indian films (particularly Bollywood) we all have an opinion, but irrespective we all secretly do wish  Oscar-worthy movies came along more often and finally we got a good chance with The Lunchbox, but India so wonderfully failed to nominate it. Waaaaah. Here is a rediff article written by Aseem Chhabra explaining the sad situation. It's lengthy, but worth the read. Before that, have a looksies at a social media snapshot of what everyone was saying about The Lunchbox.


A scene from The Good RoadAseem Chhabra is heartbroken that India overlooked the acclaimed film,The Lunchbox, as its Oscar nominee.

Two weeks ago, I sat at the Starbucks coffee shop inside the Chapters bookstore on John Street in Toronto. Anne Thompson, the influential critic, columnist for Indiewire, was seated on the same table next to me. She had just seen Ritesh Batra’s The Lunchbox at a screening at the Toronto International Film Festival.

She liked the film so much that she wrote a piece in which she said: 'In all likelihood, India will submit yet another big-budget Bollywood film for the Oscar.' But she added that India would do well to pick The Lunchbox. 'It has heart, ' Anne felt.

On Saturday many film watchers in India and abroad were shocked to learn that the Film Federation of India did not select The Lunchbox as India's official entry, instead we heard that a Gujarati film, The Good Road, willrepresent the entire Indian film industry in the foreign language Oscar race.

September 17, 2013

But Why

Remember that one time when Rani Mukherjee's rendition of Happy Birthday in K3G was the worst/most comical thing ever? Well, something finally trumped it and it's not even fiction.

To quote VJ Juhi Pande, "Marilyn Monroe spins in her grave."

I can't.

P.S. This is what Narendra Modi (a candidate for prime minister) looks like.

Btw, this is the woman who (unfortunately) kind of successfully sold herself as the face of Bollywood in LA. I hope damage control has been done. I have had a(n almost irrational) distaste for Mallika since she debuted and this new debacle certainly doesn't help her case. Worst PR stunt ever.

September 16, 2013

Trailers, Promos and Friends: Ramleela

If Sanjay Leela  Bhansali (of Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam, Devdas fame) and Vishal Bhardwaj (of Omkara, Kaminey fame) had a baby, the world would get this:

You want old school colorful Bollywood? Check. You want nitty gritty non-flakey acting? Check. There is a lot of promise that comes with this trailer, but given SLB's last two films it will be hard to say if he manages to balance the drama and opulence. If anyone can, it's him. I guess the man heard me when I said I miss vintage Sanjay. This movie could really help bring him back into the game as long as he doesn't get caught up in trying too hard and if the "mature" content is handled tastefully-- very tricky terrain.

A long time ago when Kareena was signed for this role, I was very fangirl stoked to see her work under Bhansali and then she was replaced with Priyanka and I was still really stoked and then she was replaced with Deepika and then I got confused. Then future projects of Deepika began to surface and she was slowly building a strong resume and by 2012 it was very obvious that 2013 was going to be the year of the Deepika. Ramleela might just be the movie that confirms her position as a top actress. Ranveer Singh has done nothing, but well for himself and I have no doubt this film will only prove once again why he's the next big thing. Though Priyanka was replaced it's believed that she'll still be appearing in a song. Holla.

One thing is guaranteed though, as with all SLB films, this thing is going to be aesthetically flooring especially with the undeniable chemistry. We'll have to wait until November 15th to see. 

May 17, 2013

Bollywood Choreography

I'm back by popular demand and by popular demand I really just mean me (and a few lone supporters). Let's act like I never left and jump right in, shall we? We shall.

Every night I have been bumpin' and I mean bummmmpin' (more than it prob deserves) to this. It has all the flavors of classic Bollywood with the contemporary flair we've learned to accept and enjoy. This has "Shaadi Banger" (a phrase which has not been coined probably due to its suggestive content) written all over it. Deepika-Ranbir chemistry is so unmistakably good that I lament over their break up. But the thing that probably really  makes this video is Ranbir Kapoor. I. Mean. Swoon. 

Now for the complaining. That choreography? Remo D'Souza (known for hip hop) is the man behind this so what's he doing choreographing a Bollywood number? RK is given decent steps and he executes them super adorably/animatedly as the song calls for, but what about Deepika? She gets: strut, strut, matak matak, shimmy, matak matak, shimmy, strut strut.

Laaaazy choreography, I can't even. It hurts. It hurts me.

Listen, the girl can dance she just needs someone to polish her. She could easily be one of the best dancers in (current) Bollywood (I refer you to "Dhoom Tana" ) Actually, there are so many current actresses who could be polished/be given more challenging steps. Hell if Katrina can be fixed then, damn it, anyone can be. I don't know why choreographers aren't trying. Compare a good dancer from now to a bad dancer from the early '90s and there's hardly a difference. They tried so much harder. Maybe actor schedules just don't allow time for dance lessons. If you're going to have an industry that sells itself on "singing and dancing" then fix your dancing cause otherwise it's just embarrassing. To be fair there are those out there salvaging it like, ray of hope, Vaibhavi Merchant.

I'm not even going to start on the grave injustice done to Madhuri Dixit by overrated Farah Khan in this number becuase Madhuri can work any choreography, like this number. Or the whole influx of Russian dancers just to have fairer girls. GAG.

Choreo aside, enjoy the song! It's so addictive, fun, catchy and a jam through and through.

October 14, 2010

First Look: Tees Maar Khan

So director Farah Khan is the new kid on the Twitter block and it so happens that she has an upcoming film... coincidence? I thank not. Oh well, I don't care cause she dropped some awesome images of Tees Maar Khan.

Salman Khan and Katrina Kaif in a Tees Maar Khan song

Salman Khan, Katrina Kaif and Akshay Kumar in a Tees maar Khan song
By the way, my stalking leads me to believe that this is a qawwali style song titled Wallah Re Wallah. Ve shall see.

Farah Khan with Akshay Kumar and Salman Khan on the sets of Tees Maar Khan

Katrina Kaif in a Tees Maar Khan song

Katrina Kaif in Tees Maar Khan

This totally looks like the female version of "Dard-e-Disco" it is the same director/choreographer after all!

[Photo Source:]

Twitter, I love thee.

Among many, one of the reasons I'm madly in love with Twitter is because I get to see pictures like this straight from the stars themselves:

Arjun Rampal and Scarlett Johansson From, I believe, some European event

Asha Bhosle and Lata Mangeshkar in their childhood

I can't remember which sister posted this for the other sister's birthday, but OMG. Vintage! And kind of cute.

Hrithik with his son, awwww.

Cousins Kareena Kapoor and an adorable Ranbir Kapoor dancing at Riddhima Kapoor's birthday

Bipasha Basu, Priyanka Chopra, Katrina Kaif, Preity Zinta, and Rani Mukherji backstage at the Being Human fashion show

Priyanka is so dang adorable. Katrina seems like a wall flower, awww.

The ladies with the man of the hour, Salman Khan

[Photo Source: arjun,,,,,,]

Ms. Elaine Eyus (Miscellaneous)

A bunch of random tangents I need to go on.

Dabangg is totally the 'it' movie right now. Well, I think the high is slowly dying down, but was reaaally well received by regular cine goers and critics alike and supposedly raked in more money than 3 idiots? Apparently Salman Khan returned to his old school hilarious comedic ways, Sonakshi Sinha is an absolute dollface and the music is nothing short of delicious. Supposedly it was the return of old school masala Hindi cinema. Hello, right up my alley!

While on his Dabangg high Sallu bhaisaab had his Being Human fashion show during HDIL Couture Week. He roped in EIGHT actresses to channel each decade. How badass is that, right? Right. Check out the star studded fabulousness here.

In completely unrelated news, the film Do Dooni Chaar is doing spectacularly. What? Rishi Kapoor and Neetu Singh on screen together after 30 years! (with the exception of her cameo in Love Aaj Kal). The critics are saying this is the year for starless casts. What with Udaan, Love Sex aur Dhoka, Peepli [Live](India's official entry for the Oscars) and now this film all doing well.

If you want to take a peek at Do Dooni Chaar here you go:

That is all for now... I think. :)

October 13, 2010

Trailers, Promos and Friends: Guzaarish

Woohooo we get a first look at Sanjay Leela Bhansali's awaited Guzaarish

Ethan Mascarenhas (Hrithik Roshan) is a magician who one day injures himself horribly while performing an illusion causing him to become a paraplegic. This is when Sophie D'Souza (Aishwarya Rai) enters his life as his nurse. The film focuses on what happens fourteen years after the two met.

Delicious. Absolutely delicious. A little disconcertingly dark, but I guess that's Sanjay's style now. I kind of miss his colorful (with dark undertones) days of Hum Dil De.. and Devdas, but that's okay this looks lovely. What really reeled me in was this song promo.

Seriously. Sanjay Leela Bhansali brings out the best in Aishwarya. And to quote a YouTube comment,
"Ash is a chameleon. Give her anything from traditional to modern she carries it off with such grace. She looks divine as well. Agreed she isn't the best most natural actress nor the best dancer but she is a competent one in both aspects and that adds the word 'versatility' to her cap."
Loved it. You have to hand it to her... the new chickadees have nothing on her and it's pretty baller that she's still around post-marriage.

And can we talk about that song?? Soooo sultry. I found that I liked it more and more each time I listened to it. It's interesting to hear SLB as a music director. We all know he has an ear for it, especially with that whole story of how he heard Shreya Ghoshal on TV and roped her in for Devdas (sadly he didn't use her for this film). Every single one of his films has had a memorable song, if not the entire soundtrack. I really anticipate the soundtrack for this one.

The film is slated to release November 19, 2010.

Promos, Trailers and Friends: Break Ke Baad

So Break Ke Baad just dropped their trailer.

Two words: COOKIE. CUTTER. A typical, cynical, "different" take on the "modern" love story. Backdrop: Some delicious city outside of India. A hit Indian movie doesn't take place in India... duh.

Please note my sarcasm. I'm so annoyed. Okay so it looks cute. Cute as in let's watch this on Friday night when we're deathly bored. When did India's audience suddenly become the tweens of America? Remember in the '90s even early 2000s when Bollywood could do masala film, but have substance? I miss that. Okay, so like a few years ago I would have hope seeing a trailer like this I really would (think Salaam Namaste), but it just seems so overdone now. Just in the past few months we already have I Hate Luv Storys and Anjaana Anjaani. Those movies aren't bad, but they're just so... bleh like the status rom coms have in Hollywood and it shouldn't be that way because Bollywood IS rom com.

Watch, this movie will be like the next DDLJ after my rant haha.
This film is slated to release November 26, 2010.

Trailers, Promos and Friends: Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey

Do I waaaant to show you the trailer of Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey (KHJJS)?? After watching it... NO (but I will). Uprising against the British, folks talking about their playing field, Ashutosh Gowarikar directing. Oh hey, sounds like Lagaan. Too soon Ashutosh, too soon. It looks like all those other patriotic movies with a lot of Jai Hind, eff the Brits, bloodshed hoo ha. Okay so don't get me wrong there are good patriotic movies out there-- few, but they exist. I didn't really feel any sort of heart or soul in it. Maybe I'm just being a meanie because I wrote off the trailer 15 seconds in because of Abhishek's hilarious intro line. No seriously, I laughed out loud. Deepika might have a badass role though... enh I'm confused. Watch:

This film is slated to release December 3, 2010.

Trailers, Promos and Friends: Action Replayy

Remember when I was all "ohh Action Replayy might be cool, but not really, but maybe since it's a period film." Confession: After watching the trailer I'm aaaallll over it. I love me a good period piece irrespective of whether it's a satirical one or a serious/accurate one... this film being the former, obvs. Secondly it's totally spoofing old school '70s Bollywood (and who doesn't love '70s Bwood?). Sure it's a bit Om Shanti Om-esque, but I don't mind the overlapping. And like I said in my previous post, I'm kind of excited about seeing Aishwarya. Check it:

p.s. I like that Vipul Shah casts Neha Dhupia (Singh is King) she deserves a spotlight.
This film is slated to release November 5, 2010.

August 17, 2010


Hold on.

Can we just stop and marvel at how marvelous some of the ladies in the industry today are? Firstly, Lady Deepika Padukone was a show stopper for Farah Khan Ali at India International Jewelry Week. Let's just gape, stare and try not to drool:

Secondly, if you missed Kareena Kapoor at the Indian Idol 5 finale, like yours truly did due to severe food coma, then you missed out on witnessing this beaut. She. Looks. Gorgeous. No? Yes.

[Photo Source: High Heel Confidential]