To begin with, there were about 23 names in my first draft but since I had to limit it to a realistic ten, 13 lame ducks got plain lucky.
Of course, reliving those painful movie memories isn’t as pleasurable as I make them out to be. So let’s just quickly get this over and done with.
Here then is a list of 10 Hindi films this year that left me disappointed, frustrated, furious, bored or, most frequently, exhausted.
Hamari Adhuri Kahani
How shoddy is a film when you’re sniggering through all its emotional scenes?
Mohit Suri’s Hamari Adhuri Kahani takes new strides in stupidity with its regressive logic, laughable lines and moronic obsession with mangalsutras and arum lilies.
It tries so hard to be this profound tragedy about selfless love but mostly comes across as a never-ending pity party thrown for a mousy Vidya Balan’s glycerine-glistening eyes and Emraan Hashmi’s brooding despair.
Roy revolves around a filmmaker suffering from writer’s block. It could well be a product of one.
Absolutely nothing of consequence happens in the incoherent, jumbled universe of Vikramjit Singh’s Roy or its purported exploration of fiction and fantasy.
What you get is a wooden Arjun Rampal, bland Jacqueline Fernandez and their hysterical attempt to look intelligent by sporting black-rim glasses. Yet, worst of all, is the sight of a staggeringly bored Ranbir Kapoor squandering his potential in this plodding, pretentious baloney.
Yet another crummy remake of a superhit Telugu flick, Tevar is so loud it makes Raj Babbar look subtle.
In its out-dated script, a politician’s vile brother (Manoj Bajpai) lusts after a journalist’s dodo sister (Sonakshi Sinha) and only Arjun Kapoor, a loutish cocktail of Rambo, Terminator and Salman Khan can save the day and win the girl.
It’s the sort of tripe that gets it kick from Bajpai’s refusal to put his pants on till he finds the girl and finds humour in lines like Jo chane khaate hai wo badam ke paad nahi maarte and imagines passion is what Arjun and Sonakshi share on screen. But, honestly, I’ve seen more chemistry between Doraemon and Nobita.
Picture an obnoxious mix of Teletubbies and Abbas-Mustan. I know it’s hard but try. Cannot? Try Dilwale. It’s overflowing with gaudy colours, idiotic twists and epic nonsense.
This would hurt a lot lesser if Dilwale wasn’t so embarrassingly clueless about how to stage a Shah Rukh Khan-Kajol romance. (Seriously Rohit Shetty, Bulgarian mafia?) His tedious storytelling reduces them to boneheaded puppets prancing against digitally induced fakery.
All I could do is squint my eyes and yawn non-stop in response.
Nikhil Advani’s Katti Batti is one hell of a confused rom-com. Then again, is it even a rom-com? It certainly doesn’t end like one. What is it about?
Part of it plays out like a blundering (500) Days of Summer, only Imran Khan is more whiny puppy than jilted lover. Remainder is a manipulative nod to Advani’s directorial debut, Kal Ho Naa Ho.
Kangana Ranaut does her bit but Katti Batti’s blah motivations and complete absence of spirit and charm takes it nowhere.
An invisible superhero, what could go wrong? E-v-e-r-y-t-h-i-n-g.
Vikram Bhatt ruins a potentially fun premise with his loony understanding of science and fiction. What matters to him is untalented but hot heroines; cheesy lines and phony plot points. The outcome is a thoroughly unwatchable movie.
Mr X can conceal his embarrassment by my displeasure insists I make it obvious.
I loved Warriors but I cannot bear the thought of its grating remake by Karan Malhotra, Brothers.
Nauseatingly excessive, Brothers kills its own promise by dumbing down the original.
Overdone by melodramatic flashbacks, senseless characterisation, tame ring fights, overstated Christian symbolism and hammy acting, there’s little a solid Akshay Kumar can do in face of such over-the-top sensibilities.
Kis Kisko Pyaar Karoon
No matter how many wives fast for him in Kis Kisko Pyaar Karoon, let’s get this straight: Kapil Sharma is no Govinda. He’s definitely no Don Juan. He’s not even remotely comic in the absence of his greatest weapon– laugh track.
Secondly, the women in this hogwash –of the Bhagwan aisa pati sabko de fame– deserve the Tillu treatment.
Thirdly, Abbas-Mastan, why don’t you go back to making Race 3?
And finally, a documentary on possums is more entertaining and worthwhile than a viewing of the cringe-by-the-second Kis Kisko Pyaar Karoon.
Detective Byomkesh Bakshy
I didn’t review Dibakar Banerjee’s Detective Byomkesh Bakshy. Nonetheless, I did post a chain of my fluctuating reaction while sitting through his creation on my Facebook page.
I’ll share it with you: Oooh. Mmmm. Aha. Hey! Hmm. Hmm. Whoa. Aha. Hmm. Hmm. Haha. Mmm. Huh. Huh. Huh. Wha? Hah! Tsk. Eh. Sheesh.
Point is what starts out as an exercise in beautiful intrigue reveals its suspense so infuriatingly early on in the narrative and then clumsily dodders towards its so-called big reveal.
Imbued in darkness and carefully reconstructed nostalgia, it’s an awfully sophisticated imagery to behold but ultimately hollow in its realization.
Recently in an interview to Senior Film Critic Anupama Chopra, Bajirao Mastani director Sanjay Leela Bhansali stressed on how essential it is for a filmmaker to know “how to spend money and justify it.”
Something I found amiss in Anurag Kashyap’s ambitious Bombay Velvet. The sets and splendor, shot in Sri Lanka to recreate the seductive face of Bombay in the 60s, appear lovely but don’t add up to anything.
The entire premise is build around Ranbir and Anushka Sharma’s gangster-nightclub singer love story and their juvenile schemes to go against a foreboding force that is Karan Johar. Neither does the romance exude any passion nor K Jo wear the quality of threat. What’s left is a dull, derivative drama that underwhelms like few AK films have.