Ajay Devgn, Arshad Warsi, Shreyas Talpade, Kunal Khemu, Tushar Kapur, Tabu, Johnny Lever, Prakash Raj
'Golmaal Again is the least funny Golmaal film of the series'
Golmaal Again is directed by Rohit Shetty and is the fourth installment in the ever popular franchise which also happens to be one of my favorite comedy franchises. The film once again reunites the characters of Gopal (Ajay Devgn), Madhav (Arshad Warsi), Laxman1 (Shreyas Talpade), Laxman2 (Kunal Khemu) and Lucky (Tusshar Kapoor) who this time around grew up in the same orphanage. While Gopal and Laxman1 are close friends and live together, the other three are their arch rivals in the business of vacating legally possessed illegal properties. A chain of events leads them to re-allocating to their old orphanage. As they spend time in the bungalow for their own reasons, a greater game is afoot in the house which will force the guys to forget their differences and come together to solve an intriguing mystery.
With this film, Rohit Shetty brings back some fond memories and his deft touches to some of the better done comic scenes are evident. I just loved the camaraderie between the principal characters. Their hatred for each other leads to some silly yet hilarious situations. Arshad Warsi and Ajay Devgn have some great dialogs between them and the manner in which they play out their characters is bound to make you laugh.
However, my biggest complaint with the film is its comic scenes that are few and far apart. For the first time in the Golmaal franchise, they have tried to infuse a well laid-out story that has a lot of meat, twists and turns and surprises, but the execution of the story is really bad. Unfortunately, while the director has sacrificed the comedy at many junctures for some drama and thrills, these are the elements of the film that doesn't work well.
My next complaint with the film is with the caricature that it makes out of many of its characters & that too unnecessarily. Johnny Lever and Prakash Raj are supremely talented actors and they have the ability to make even a dead man smile. But here they have been made to enact loud, flimsy and unnecessarily over-the-top characters that could have easily been better written and conceived. The result is a loud and somewhat irritating comedy that doesn't always work. The film is too long and it doesn't have enough laughs to make it feel breezy.
Ajay Devgn tries really hard and it shows. He nearly singlehandedly elevates this film from being a bad one to an above ordinary material. That's what a good performance can do to a film. Arshad Warsi gives him able support and they share a great chemistry.
Overall, I was disappointed by this installment of Golmaal. It just isn't able to extract the kind of laughs that almost all its predecessors did. It has a plot that is thicker than all its predecessors but which also turns out to be its biggest problem as it comes in the way of the flow of the film's comedy.
'Secret Superstar is a heartwarming film that you would love to see again and again'
Aamir Khan, Kiran Rao
Aamir Khan, Zaira Wasim, Meher Vij, Tirth Sharma
As I sat through Secret Superstar, I couldn't help but feel a gamut of emotions ranging from comedy, morose, and a fighting spirit but more than anything a feeling of warmth that I believe lies at the core of this film. Secret Superstar is nothing that we haven't seen before. However, that fact in no way comes in the way of this film turning out to be a resplendent and utterly heart-warming affair.
Insia (Zaira Wasim) dreams of becoming a singer and being at the top of the world. However, her dreams of making it big are systematically crushed by the Hitler-esc decisions of her abusive father. Insia constantly finds solace in her mother (Meher Vij) who not only supports her and adds colors to her dreams but is also instrumental in helping Insia get some room to breathe in a world that is fast closing in the walls on her.
Life takes a turn for Insia and her mother when she uploads a song on YouTube and it is lapped up by audiences and musicians alike and she is contacted by the obnoxious Shakti Kumaarr (Aamir Khan), a musician of disrepute but a musician never the less.
There are two facets to this film. The first being Insia's struggle in realizing her dreams and the second being that of her mother finally mustering up the courage to break her shackles resulting in her daughter also getting the kind of freedom that she needed to make it big in the movie industry. Both the facets of the film work wonderfully well.
This is a film that is what it is because of its performances. You will fall in love with Insia and her mother from the moment they appear on screen. You will be tickled by the boy called Chintan who is hopelessly in love with Insia but is unable to profess his love to her. You will hate Insia's father (Raj Arjun) and be shocked at the brutality that he mets out to his wife. All of it appears real because of the manner in which the characters are acted out by the ensemble cast.
Zaira Wasim's turns in such a nuanced and bravura performance that gives a feeling that she is a seasoned actress who might have 100 films under her belt. Be it the wonder in her eyes, the quirky humor that she shares with her mother, the angst that she displays for her father and above all the passion that she shows for her singing. It's all so real that you will be totally hooked by her act.
Meher Vij, as the mother is brilliant here. She compliments Zaira scene for scene and they share such a gullible and believable chemistry that you will take them for the mother-daughter Jodi that they are playing. Aamir Khan is superb as ever. The film lights up like a bulb every time he makes an appearance. It would be criminal not to mention Tirth Sharma who plays Chintan Parekh, the love-struck friend of Insia. He not only helps her but also helps her to see how special she is. His quirky mannerism and his (Oh, so cute!) rendition of his feelings for Zaira is bound to put a smile or two on your faces.
Secret Superstar also boasts of some terrific music.
Overall, Secret Superstar is a heart-touching and relevant film for this generation. While many will find a voice in the underdog story of Insia, I wish that there are also those who are able to relate to the character of her mother and atleast think about letting their children live their dreams. I know it's highly improbable but there is no harm in dreaming right?