New Delhi: A packed week awaits movie buffs.
Apoorva Lakhia’s biographical crime film Haseena Parkar, starring Shraddha Kapoor, fails to impress and is surely not on the list of recommended gangster films, says Deccan Chronicle. Lakhia aims to make a gripping biopic but it turns out boring and meaningless. He fails to recreate the 1970s era and the cast does not do much to help. The open-ended climax offers no explanation for what is supposed to be, a story based on real-life events.
Omung Kumar’s action thriller Bhoomi, starring Sanjay Dutt and Aditi Rao Hydari, sees Dutt pull off an age-appropriate, impactful role, says Firstpost. However, for all the time screenwriter Raaj Shaandilyaa and director Kumar spend in setting up a world that is a believable mix of stereotypes and new-age thinking post the crime, the narrative takes on the convenience of revenge drama tropes. Certain scenes are designed with interesting elements—for instance, the crime scene, and the early moments between father and daughter—but design and drama are printed in bold all over the film. There is no escaping either, and there is no subtlety in their delivery.
Rajkummar Rao’s Newton, directed by Amit V. Masurkar, is the rare Indian film that uses dark comedy to make its points effectively, says The Indian Express. We go from smiling to laughing outright even at its grimmest, because the film is light on its feet, and the tone is consistent right through. Masurkar and co-scriptwriter Mayank Tewari have crafted a strong black comedy. It is as sharp and subversive as the classic Jaane Bhi Do Yaaro, and even though it is entirely sobering, it leaves us feeling just a little better about ourselves.
For Hollywood fans, action spy comedy Kingsman: The Golden Circle, directed by Matthew Vaughn and starring Colin Firth, Taron Egerton, Mark Strong, Edward Holcroft and Sophie Cookson, comes to India this week. As ultra violent as the first film, and as ultra smutty, The Golden Circle will leave Kings fans grinning, even if its characters have less growing to do this time around, says Empire magazine. Kingsman was at its core a smart spin on Pygmalion, with Colin Firth’s starchy superspy Harry tutoring the chavvy Eggsy (Egerton) in the ways of properly refined espionage. With that arc complete, Eggsy doesn’t have anywhere so interesting to go in The Golden Circle, in terms of character development at least. Neither the culture-clash elements—which arise once Eggsy seeks out the brash, honky-tonky Statesmen—nor his attempts to stay faithful to his royal Swedish girlfriend Tilde (a returning Hanna Alström) quite fill that Pygmalion-shaped hole.
Screen Rant is more impressed, pointing out that the film doubles down on slick action and spy genre riffs, but adds enough fresh and fun elements to provide an exciting sequel. Like the unique fighting sequences in The Secret Service, The Golden Circle employs exceptionally dynamic action set pieces using a mixture of fast-paced close-ups—on everything from characters to weapons as they move around whatever setting in which the fight is placed—and slow motion. This mix of shots works to break up the pacing of each action scene, which ups the energy and, ultimately, the enjoyment factor of these sequences.
In the south, Telugu action drama Jai Lava Kusa, directed by K. S. Ravindra and starring Jr. NTR, Raashi Khanna and Nivetha Thomas, seemingly modelled on the Ramayana, keeps you entertained for the most part, says India Today. NTR, in the titular role, gives one of his finest performances. If you’re ready to overlook the severely boring romantic tracks, weakly-written emotional scenes, and an item song, Jai Lava Kusa is a good entertainer.
Malayalam film Parava, starring Dulquer Salmaan and Shane Nigam and directed by Soubin Shahir, has a striking originality about it, be it the characters, houses and locales to the story in itself, says The Times of India. The plot, except for certain stretches, is compelling with its unpredictable narrative. For those not familiar with the dove flying game, it offers a lot of interesting imageries. The film has some earnest performances and very talented cast, especially the two kids through whom most of the story is showcased.
Several releases this week haven’t inspired any reviews yet. These include Tamil films Bayama Irukku, Konjam Konjam, Kalavu Thozhirchalai and Pichuva Kaththi; Marathi drama Anaan; Punjabi film Nikka Zaildar 2; and Bengali movies Bolo Dugga Ma Ki, Projapoti Biskut and Yeti Obhijaan.