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Worst & Best of Q1 bolly

rajdhani express

Release date: 04.01.2013

What: A man on the run finds himself on the wrong foot when he shares a train compartment with a scriptwriter, an item girl and a fashion designer. Tennis ace Leander Paes made his Bolly debut with this train wreck of a film.

Thumbs up: You must be joking!

Thumbs down: Everything — including a surprisingly camera-conscious and screen-awkward Leander.

t2 review: Is this the much-awaited career-bending launch for The Leander Paes? Why would you trust an Ashok Kohli to kick-start your Bollywood career? Opposite Sayali Bhagat? What were you thinking?

Verdict: FLOP

table no. 21

Release date: 04.01.2013

What: A young couple find their dream holiday in picture-perfect Fiji turn into a nightmare as they become puppets in a reality show.

Thumbs up: The novel premise, picturesque Fiji, competent performances from Paresh Rawal, Rajeev Khandelwal and Tena Desae.

Thumbs down: Lack of big stars, not edge-of-the-seat.

t2 review: Table No. 21 works — particularly in the first half — because it manages to keep the narrative clutter-free and designs the intrigue in a ‘what next?’ format.

Verdict: FLOP

matru ki bijlee ka mandola

Release date: 11.01.2013

What: A wealthy, cynical businessman dreams of turning his village into a fledgling economic zone, but has to face opposition from his fellow villagers and battle his own drinking problem.

Thumbs up: Pankaj Kapur’s (as Mandola) top act, Anushka Sharma’s (as Bijlee) oomph, some fun moments, Vishal Bhardwaj the music man.

Thumbs down: Vishal Bhardwaj the director, the indulgent pace, and confusing characters.

t2 review: It’s like this all-knowing self-conscious hodgepodge that laughs at its own jokes and keeps patting itself on the back. It is Vishal Bhardwaj’s No Drinking, which, like Anurag Kashyap’s No Smoking, is so full of itself that it just cannot fathom the fall.

Verdict: FLOP

inkaar

Release date: 18.01.2013

What: Sudhir Mishra gives sexual harassment at the workplace a whole new spin with this Arjun Rampal-Chitrangda Singh starrer that explores the thin line between flirting and harassment.

Thumbs up: The bold theme, Chitrangda the stunner, a suave Arjun, the thrilling first half.

Thumbs down: The cliched cop-out.

t2 review: Inkaar tosses how-thin-is-the-line questions and serves up a heady concoction of secrets, lies and betrayal that takes off from Disclosure but goes into whole new territories. Territories that are straight out of real Indian offices and also territories that are a tad too Bollywoody for comfort.

Verdict: flop

race 2

Release date: 25.01.2013

What: Abbas-Mustan, Bolly’s men in white, follow up their 2008 blockbuster with yet another cringe fest peppered with brawny men, skimpily-clad bimbettes, fast cars and a wafer-thin plot. But that didn’t stop Race 2 from racing into the Rs 100-crore club.

Thumbs up: Pritam’s Party on my mind, a stunning Deepika Padukone.

Thumbs down: Too many cliches, lack of logic, poor performances.

t2 review: When they are not walking in super slo-mo towards the camera or talking in hushed tones meant to make them sound intelligent, every actor is worse than the other. Once you have run, cross that, just sat through this new Race, you will become one of those fruits Anil Kapoor is chomping all the time. Fruit without the nuts that is.

Verdict: Blockbuster

akaash vani

Release date: 25.01.2013

What: A victim of marital rape defies societal prejudices to reunite with her former lover.

Thumbs up: The socially relevant premise, the acting of lead pair Kartik Tiwari and Nusrat Bharucha.

Thumbs down: Too slow, feels tedious after a point.

Verdict: FLOP

ABCD

Release date: 08.02.2013

What: Remo D’Souza brings together Prabhudeva and a bunch of promising movers and shakers for India’s first 3D dance film.

Thumbs up: An emotional story to complement the eye-popping dance acts, Prabhudeva’s killer moves.

Thumbs down: Lack of big names, tacky in parts.

t2 review: In a clear nod to the Step Up franchise, ABCD is a larger-than-life dance spectacle in 3D that will make you gawk and gape. But beyond the washboard abs and gyrating bodies is an emotional story of fighting against the odds, of the will to believe in oneself and the power to make it happen.

Verdict: SEMI-HIT

special 26

Release date: 08.02.2013

What: A team of conmen given to duping ministers and businessmen plan the biggest heist of their lives in this sharp and entertaining Neeraj Pandey film.

Thumbs up: Akshay Kumar in a hatke role, the strong supporting cast led by Manoj Bajpai and Anupam Kher, the attention to details in recreating India of the 1980s.

Thumbs down: The unnecessary romantic track, M.M. Kreem’s music.

t2 review: About 26 minutes less and Special 26 could have been a great film. That’s roughly the length of the two songs and the irritatingly redundant romantic track, which serves the star in the lead but does extreme disservice to what is otherwise a fun, sharp and thoroughly entertaining movie experience.

Verdict: semi-hit

murder 3

Release date: 15.02.2013

What: Based on the Colombian thriller The Hidden Face, the latest film in the Bhatt franchise serves up the Murder staples of love, lies and deception... but there’s no murder and no sex!

Thumbs up: The unusual premise, the two-hour running time.

Thumbs down: Boring and repetitive in parts, too laidback for a thriller, songs with no replay power.

t2 review: For a thriller, Murder 3 takes too much time to build the suspense and intrigue. Despite clocking a total runtime of just two hours, the first half meanders along, often getting repetitive.

Verdict: AVERAGE

jayantabhai ki luv story

Release date: 15.02.2013

What: This love story of an underworld Bhai was a yawnathon from start to finish.

Thumbs up: Sachin-Jigar’s music.

Thumbs down: Too many to count.

t2 review: What could be more terrifying than the scariest of Ramsay Brothers films? Well, a film with no beginning, no end and no escape from the cycle of pain. And that has been easily achieved in Jayantabhai ki Luv Story.

Verdict: FLOP

kai po che!

Release date: 22.02.2013

What: A story of friendship, love and loss set against the Gujarat riots of 2002. This Abhishek Kapoor-directed film was based on Chetan Bhagat’s best-selling novel The 3 Mistakes of my Life.

Thumbs up: A rare film better than the book, top-notch performances from the lead cast of Rajkumar Yadav, Sushant Singh Rajput and Amit Sadh, Amit Trivedi’s soulful tunes, Anay Goswami’s camerawork.

Thumbs down: Emotionally manipulative in parts.

t2 review: Sometimes there comes a film so good you are scared to write about it. Scared that you might kill it by writing about it. Because original material so mediocre has been turned into a motion picture so moving that putting it back into words might undo the magic.

Verdict: HIT

zila ghaziabad

Release date: 22.02.2013

What: A ’90s-style film about goons and gangsters and friendships turned sour. A tortuous watch from first to last.

Thumbs up: Nothing.

Thumbs down: Everything.

t2 review: If the film is a re-enactment of the gang wars that rocked Ghaziabad in the 1990s, then it has managed to draw fresh blood — its latest victims being the unfortunate few squirming in their plex seats. An important lesson has been taught there are bad movies, ugly movies and then there is Zila Ghaziabad!

Verdict: flop

i, me aur main

Release date: 01.03.2013

What: A man shirks his responsibilities and refuses to grow up till the day his girlfriend gets pregnant.

Thumbs up: Easy-on-the-eye John Abraham and Chitrangda Singh.

Thumbs down: Bland and boring.

t2 review: The only scene of I, Me Aur Main one can identify with has John half-lying on the couch and fuming that the pizza’s over, the beer’s no longer cold and he’s just lost the computer game he was playing. If you were in the middle of a movie like this, you would do the same.

Verdict: FLOP

saheb biwi aur gangster returns

Release date: 08.03.2013

What: Tigmanshu Dhulia follows up his 2011 tale of deception and betrayal with this sex, lies and royalty saga, throwing Irrfan Khan into the delicious mix.

Thumbs up: Irrfan the ghamasaan gangster, Dhulia’s expert crafting of a vicious loop of power and passion.

Thumbs down: A flaccid second half, a one-note performance from Mahie Gill.

t2 review: It’s the sheer awesomeness of Irrfan Khan that puts Saheb Biwi Aur Gangster Returns a notch above the first film. Watch it for his ‘tevar’-tod act and that incredible “sensitive tomato scene” in the first half.

Verdict: AVERAGE

jolly llb

Release date: 15.03.2013

What: A social satire told in a comic vein that rips the veil off the loopholes and corruption, mess and machinations of the legal system.

Thumbs up: The fun yet hard-hitting premise, a stellar act from Saurabh Shukla, some laugh-out-loud moments.

Thumbs down: Predictable and convenient in parts.

t2 review: Subhash Kapoor — whose Phas Gaye Re Obama three years ago was a caustic comment on global recession — lends an admirable lightness of touch to this satire, tempering morality with mirth and making sure that Jolly LLB neither gets too heavy nor degenerates into a mockery of the legal system.

Verdict: average

mere dad ki maruti

Release date: 15.03.2013

What: A young man loses his dad’s prized wheels — and then spends the rest of the film trying to find it.

Thumbs up: Some genuinely funny moments, Ram Kapoor’s robust act, the 101-minute running time.

Thumbs down: Wafer-thin plot, cliched and stereotyped.

t2 review: Dangling somewhere between a “burger kahin ka” movie and Ferrari Ki Sawaari’s (2012) goody-two-shoes storyline, Mere Dad Ki Maruti has just about enough fuel to take viewers to the nearest pump next Friday.

Verdict: average

3g

Release date: 15.03.2013

What: A couple on holiday face an unlikely threat — their own cell phone!

Thumbs up: Sonal Chauhan in a red bikini, the (few-and-far between) liplocks between Sonal and Neil Nitin Mukesh

Thumbs down: Doesn’t spook.

t2 review: The visual effects are good and bad in parts. The car accident scene is brilliant but that ugh-more-than-scary head on a plate is fail.

Verdict: FLOP

AATMA

Release date: 22.03.2013

What: A dead father returns to claim his daughter in this Suparn Verma horror fest.

Thumbs up: The Bipasha Basu-Nawazuddin Siddiqui novel casting, the 95-minute running time.

Thumbs down: Not scary enough, Nawaz in a two-bit role.

t2 review: What you see in the 95 minutes of this film is everything that the promos of Aatma have been showing us over the last two months. Give or take a few unintentionally hilarious moments.

Verdict: FLOP

rangrezz

Release date: 22.03.2013

What: Bollywood inflicts Jackky Bhagnani on the viewer in yet another run-of-the-mill friendship film.

Thumbs up: The Gangnam Style soundtrack (that Jackky dances to it is a #fail, though).

Thumbs down: Too many to count.

t2 review: There are good movies, bad movies and then there is Priyadarshan’s Rangrezz, a remake of the Tamil film Naadodigal, that makes viewers wolf down overpriced soda and popcorn while teaching a lesson or nine about filmmaking and life.

Verdict: FLOP

himmatwala

Release date: 29.03.2013

What: Sajid Khan makes Ajay Devgn slip into Jeetendra’s white shoes for the remake of the 1983 original. A disaster from reel one to reel 16.

Thumbs up: Nothing.

Thumbs down: Everything.

t2 review: Life’s too precious to spend two-and-a-half-hours over films like Himmatwala. Cinema’s too precious to pamper filmmakers like Sajid Khan. I didn’t sign up for this job for a Good Friday like this. But I take heart from the fact that maybe, just maybe, I could save some of you from the suffering.

Verdict: FLOP

PLUS

chashme baddoor

Release date: 05.04.2013

What: David Dhawan takes a leaf out of the 1981 Farooq Shaikh-Deepti Naval original to come up with a story of three friends chasing their pretty neighbour.

Thumbs up: Some genuinely fun moments, a top-notch Rishi Kapoor.

Thumbs down: Loud and crass, not a patch on the original.

t2 review: What the new Chashme Baddoor doesn’t have is the ethos of the original, that quaint innocent charm which won the hearts of an entire generation. Not vulgar, not puerile, not silly, just crisp clean fun.

Verdict: OPENED Average

rise of the zombie

Release date: 05.04.2013

What: India’s first tryst with the zombie genre traces the gradual and gory degeneration of a photographer into the walking dead .

Thumbs up: The novel premise.

Thumbs down: Too boring, lack of big stars, too much blood and gore.

t2 review: Experimental to the point of indulgence, Rise of the Zombie is a one-man show, with (Luke) Kenny dominating almost every frame. Even at just 90 minutes, Kenny (who co-directs with Devaki Singh) takes too long to build up the drama.

Verdict: OPENED POOR

Which was the best/ worst film you watched between January and March? Tell t2@abp.in


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