A still from ‘Budhia Singh-Born to Run’
A still from ‘Budhia Singh-Born to Run’

Film wrap: ‘Budhia Singh-Born to Run’ races ahead this week

Besides the biopic sports film 'Budhia Singh', there's 'Suicide Squad' and 'Jason Bourne' for Hollywood fans

New Delhi: It’s the week for small, content-driven films.

Biographical sports film Budhia Singh-Born To Run, directed by Soumendra Padhi and starring Manoj Bajpayee and Mayur Patole, races far ahead of the average sports biopic, says Scroll.in. Padhi’s screenplay valourises the role of the Oriya child prodigy’s controversial coach Biranchi Das, stacks up inspirational songs and soaring background music and goes to great lengths to portray Biranchi as a visionary trainer. And while the sports biopic wants to be black and white, it’s actually a nice shade of grey. Read more here

NDTV Movies says the film is neither average Bollywood fare nor is it just another sports-themed potboiler designed to magnify the heroics of an achiever. It is instead, by no means a perfect film, but an honest, heartfelt and highly effective tribute to a coach and his ward who were bafflingly stopped in their tracks. This one is totally worth running to the nearest multiplex for. Read more here

Director Sunil Shah’s Moods Of Crime, starring Ayaz Ahmed and Anima Pagare, has some thought-provoking questions lying at its core but Shah’s naivety renders him incapable of pulling off this well-thought thriller, says The Times of India. Poor execution and bad acting make this a mere comedic watch. Read more here

Arshad Warsi-starrer The Legend Of Michael Mishra, directed by Manish Jha, is neither quirky nor edgy, failing to qualify as a comedy in the first place, says The Statesman. The plot with meaningless twists and mindless turns requires you to shut your reasoning abilities once you’re in the theatre. Read more here

For Hollywood fans, American superhero film Suicide Squad, directed by David Ayer and starring Will Smith, Jared Leto and Margot Robbie, comes to India this week. The New York Times calls it a so-so, off-peak superhero movie, chasing after the nihilistic swagger of Deadpool and the anarchic whimsy of Guardians of the Galaxy but tripping over its own feet. The colours are lurid and smeary, the death toll is high, but in spite of all the mayhem and attitude, the overall mood is cautious. For a film about a gang of outlaw brawlers, Suicide Squad is awfully careful to stay inside the lines. Read more here

Variety magazine added that on paper, the film could have been the antidote to an increasingly codified strain of comic book movies, but in the end, it’s just another high-attitude version of the same. For reasons beyond Ayer’s control, he’s beholden to the corporate vision of other recent DC adaptations, most notably Zack Snyder’s sleek-surfaced and oppressively self-serious riffs on the Superman legend. Read more here

Director Paul Greengrass’ thriller Jason Bourne, starring Matt Damon, is fun but forgettable, says The Guardian. The Snowden/social media plotline of this film does a bit to make Bourne more relevant. But the ingredients are basically the same. Each souped-up action scene and punch-up has an extra level of digital sophistication. Read more here

A.V Club adds that those unfamiliar with the franchise may feel a little fuzzy, the series coming to them like a disorganized jumble. Five films in, it could just be that the Bourne model—all the globetrotting silliness of 007, but with a gritty, geopolitical veneer—has started to look dispiritingly like a rigid formula. Read more here

National Award-winning Punjabi film Chauthi Koot, directed by Gurvinder Singh and starring Suvinder Vicky and Rajbir Kaur, is a marvelously authentic re-creation of the dread and fear of 1980s Punjab, says The Indian Express. Singh’s single achievement is the manner in which he makes us forget that there is a camera, despite the formalism of his style. His characters (some theatre people, some non-actors) appear rooted in the milieu; their faces are creased and lived in, and we believe in them. Read more here

Hindustan Times agrees the film is an emotional and psychological drama; it doesn’t comment on policy paralysis or find a culprit, translating facts into a humane narrative without giving much room for prejudice. Singh earlier showed his flawless depiction of complex psychological issues in Anhe Ghore Da Daan (2011); that continues here. He doesn’t state the obvious, but plays with the audience’s psyche. Read more here

Several releases this week haven’t elicited any reviews yet. These include suspense thriller Fever, director Monjoy Joy Mukerji’s Hai Apna Dil Toh Awara, Tamil films Meendum Oru Kadhal Kadhai and Thirunaal, Telugu family drama Srirastu Subhamastu, Malayalam movies Ann Maria Kalippilaanu and Vismayam, Marathi films Chhatrapati Shivaji and Disco Sannya, Punjabi film Gelo, Garhwali movie Hello UK and Tulu language comedy Dabak Daba Aisa.

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