Home movies Reviews Mohalla Assi movie review: Sunny Deol-starrer is provocative, pungent and relevant

Mohalla Assi movie review: Sunny Deol-starrer is provocative, pungent and relevant

There is a lot to be said about Varanasi, the holy city at the riverbank of the Ganga where culture and religion are the twin lifesavers. Everything including Gangaajal is for sale in Varanasi.

Based on Hindi litterateur Kashi Nath Singh`s “Kashi Ka Assi”, a scathing indictment of merchandised religiosity in Varanasi, Dwivedi`s freewheeling adaptation doesn`t shy away from letting the narrative hang loose to accommodate characters from different strata and owing allegiance to polarised political interests which seem to have a meeting point in the dhaba, an adda of ideas where political opinions are fired fearlessly.

Some of the thoughts expressed on the communal conundrum of this great nation of ours are so steeped in relevance and immediacy that we have to remind ourselves that the film is set during the years just before the demolition of the Babri Masjid.

So it isn`t surprising really, that one elderly wise man asks, “How can the Ram temple in Ayodhya be built brick by brick? Have you ever heard of a temple built of bricks?”

This atmosphere of free speech allows renowned actors to come together for a pow-wow that is layered in sarcasm. At one point, Sunny Deol playing an impoverished semi-redundant Brahmin priest, tells his screen wife Sakshi Tanwar that he must leave for Ayodhya to support the construction of the Ram temple.

“Why do you need to go to Ayodhya to encounter Ram? Just stay here and chant His name,” the wife snorts from her meal-time thali.

While the first half of the film picks out characters with all their quirks of radicalism and scatters them everywhere, it is the second half that comes to grips with the crux of the theme.

When all is said and done, “Mohalla Assi” is not a film about the politic of rhetorics. It is an intimate portrait of a social fabric falling into a cultural abyss. It is the story of a Hindu priest Pandey (Deol) perched on the precipice of penury. As Pandey and his wife stare at a life of hopelessness for their children (they have to go to a neighbour`s home to watch television) all around them, their neighbours bloom and blossom by selling their souls and renting their rooms to tourists.

Dwivedi`s narration steers us into Pandey`s fear of losing his relevance to a society that has left Sanskrit far behind and is now chasing the English language. Deol and Tanwar are in fine form as the priest and his supportive yet discontented wife. Their scenes together are brimming with unstated emotions. Tanwar seems more comfortable as Deol`s better half than she did as Aamir Khan`s wife in “Dangal”.

In the way Deol is coerced into compromising his cultural and religious purity, I was reminded of his father Dharmendra in Hrishikesh Mukherjee`s “Satyakam”. This is easily Deol`s most emotionally unalloyed performance. There are other actors contributing pitch-perfect performances that give a swivelling spin to this saga of a downward spiralling social structure.

Ravi is fabulous as a slimy tourist guide who knows which buttons to press to get the right currency out of the dharmic vending machine. And Faisal Rashid as a barber-turned-baba is a telling comment on the cancerous spread of consumerism.

But my favourite sequences are between Sakshi Tanwar and Seema Azmi, the latter playing a socially inferior neighbour who comes into affluence after her husband brings home a firangi tourist. The two ladies nudge the wackiness of Varanasi`s cultural schizophrenia and the rampancy of adulterous sex in the holy city, into a state of awakened bitchiness.

They could be allies in a beauty parlour if they were parlour-worthy.

“Mohalla Assi” may seem a bit scattered in its characterisation. But eventually, it proves as portentous and pungent as the city that its brilliant cameraman (Vijay Arora) captures in rolling waves of gossiping mobocracy.

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Home movies Reviews ‘URI’ earns 20 crores in 2 days at box office

‘URI’ earns 20 crores in 2 days at box office

Actor Vicky Kaushal, who is playing the role of an Indian commando in the recently released ‘Uri – The Surgical Strike’, has said the entire film team is going through a surreal feeling that audience has accepted their war-drama film with open arms.

Vicky Kaushal was interacting with media after success of ‘Uri…’ along with his co-stars Mohit Raina and Yami Gautam on Saturday in Mumbai.

The movie is based on the 2016 Indian Army’s surgical strikes inside Pakistan as a retaliation for the Uri terrorist attack.

The film picked up pace on second day and collected 20 crore at the box-office in 2 days.

Vicky Kaushal praised his co-actors and director Aditya Dhar for being part of the film. “I am really happy for the actors and director of the film because it is Adtiya’s (Dhar) first film as a director,” he said.

“In today’s age, it is very difficult for a debutant director to get backing from producers for the story and then get a huge release for his film. Ultimately, when audience appreciates the film then, it’s really special thing for the entire team,” said Vicky.

Yesterday makers of ‘Uri…’ hosted a special screening for the Army personnel. 

“It feels really great when Army men appreciate your film because we have made this film to pay tribute for their work” said Vicky. 

“Yesterday, we hosted the screening for Sikh Regiment. Interestingly, they trained all actors who are playing the role of commando in the film so, it was a special moment for us because during the training, they used to scold us. But yesterday, they were appreciating our performance,” he said.

Asked if his team would like to host a special screening for Prime Minister Narendra Modi, he said, “Definitely.. we would love to, but I don’t think he will have the time.”

The film stars Vicky Kaushal, Yami Gautam, Kirti Kulhari, Mohit Raina and Paresh Rawal in key roles. It is produced by RSVP movies and directed by Aditya Dhar.

Bollywood trade analyst Taran Adarsh also posted that glowing word of mouth has helped movie to pick up on day 2 collection making a total collection of 20 crores in 2 days.

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Home movies Reviews Ranveer Singh’s Simmba crosses 200 crore mark. It’s a blockbuster

Ranveer Singh’s Simmba crosses 200 crore mark. It’s a blockbuster

Ranveer Singh’s Simmba has crossed the Rs 200 crore mark at the domestic box office and the movie is officially a blockbuster on the box office.  The film was the last big release of 2018 and hit the theatres ahead of the New Year on December 28 starring Sara Ali Khan as the female lead opposite Ranveer. Simmba also stars Sonu Sood and Ashutosh Rana. The film is Rohit Shetty’s 8th consecutive film to have entered the Rs 100 crore club and is expected become his third film to make it to the coveted Rs 200 crore club.

According to a report  in Boxofficeindia.com, the film collected Rs 5.50 crore on Tuesday, which takes its total to Rs 201 crore. Simmba is Rohit Shetty’s most successful film after Chennai Express and Golmaal Again at the domestic box office. The report also predicts that the film will soon surpass the domestic collections of Shetty’s other blockbusters Golmaal Again (Rs 205 crore) and Chennai Express (Rs 227 crore) this week.

Ranveer said in an interview to Famously Filmfare, “Everything I was born to do, I have done in Rohit Shetty’s film from running at high speed, dialogues, fights to larger than life projection from a low angle on a huge canvas.” Simmba has already surpassed the collections of Ranveer’s earlier film, Bajirao Mastani, and might cross the collections of Padmaavat, which stands at a domestic collection of Rs 302 crore.

Ranveer Singh next film Gully Boy’s trailer with Alia Bhatt is released yesterday and from the trailer its looks like the movie is  another big blockbuster. We must say that Ranveer Singh’s career has taken another jump after marriage to lady love Deepika Padukone. 

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Home movies Reviews Simmba Box office collection Day3: Earns Rs 100 cr worldwide in a...

Simmba Box office collection Day3: Earns Rs 100 cr worldwide in a opening weekend

Ranveer Singh’s Simmba has become his biggest solo hit at the box office. According to estimates, the Rohit Shetty film has netted a total of Rs 76 crore on its opening weekend in India.

Box Office India estimates that Simba box office collection after the first weekend stands at an estimated Rs 75 crore. The Rohit Shetty film made Rs 31 crore on Sunday, growing from strength to strength after a solid debut of Rs 20.72 crore on Friday, followed by Rs 23 crore on Saturday. The report says that film has performed exceptionally well in Gujarat and Mumbai, its leading markets.

The film has made at least Rs 29 crore in international markets, including $1.7million (Rs 11 crore) on its opening weekend in USA and Canada, according to Box Office Mojo. This takes the film’s worldwide total to over Rs 100 crore in its opening weekend, with more international numbers expected.

Ranveer’s previous biggest hits include his three films with now wife Deepika Padukone and director Sanjay Leela Bhansali – Goliyon Ki Raasleela: Ram Leela, Bajiraro Mastani and Padmaavat, which made Rs 112crore, Rs 183 crore and Rs 282 crore in India, respectively. Padmaavat, his most successful film at the box office, made Rs 114 crore in India on an extended five-day opening, despite the film not being screened in certain markets. It was speculated that the film could have made an additional Rs 35 crore had its release not been impacted by protests.

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