Main Aisa Hi Hoon

I had begun watching this movie about five years ago but lost interest early on. Last night I gave it another try and thought it was a very sweet movie. Main Aisa Hi Hoon (I Am Like This) is very much a copy of the Hollywood film I Am Sam. So much so that the main character even works at a coffee shop, but there are some differences too.

Indraneel “Neel” (Ajay Devgan) is a simple man/autistic (they use the words over and over again) who with the purity of his love wins over the disturbed, drug addicted, Maya (Esha Deol) for a time. After she gives birth to a baby girl, Gungun, she leaves Neel and runs away. With the help of his upstairs neighbor Ritu and his equally “simple” friends he raises Gungun to the best of his ability. One day her grandfather Dayanath (Anupam Kher) comes and wants to take her away. They go to court for custody and Neel gets Niti (Sushmita Sen) to be his lawyer. The court case is often laughable but had some genuinely moving moments as well. There are lots of other things I liked as well; and for the ending, you will have to watch it and see.

The acting in the film was great. This is the first Ajay Devgan film I have reviewed, but not the first I have seen. He is very talented and he gave the role of Neel all his heart and soul. Esha Deol was great when she was in the film and I would like to see more of her films. Anupam was great as always but I will always like him more as the funny sweet father figure rather than cold and mean. Sushmita Sen was lovely as usual but did not really do anything special or memorable in this film.

Perhaps one reason I only think of this as an average film is that the music was so forgettable. I am still humming along to the song I love from Humraaz, but the songs in this movie are forgotten as soon as they are over. No fun if you ask me ;). Well, that’s it for now folks.

Spreading the Bollywood love.

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Vivah

One thing I love about Bollywood films is their length. Most films run around three hours long, and so there is a lot of story and character development. I think it is the reason that the films evoke so much emotion. You really start to care about the characters. It also means there are these great built in intermissions, so it is easy to watch a film over two days. This last week I watched Vivah (Marriage: A Journey from Engagement to Marriage). Perhaps it is because I will soon be getting married (in 5 weeks!) myself, but I really liked this movie. It was at moments a little too sweet, but I liked it nonetheless.

The story is about the most perfect daughter parents could want, Poonam, who is orphaned and raised by her aunt and uncle. She and her cousin are like sisters, but auntie is jealous that she is more beautiful than her daughter. Her uncle is a gem though. When it is her time to get married they find the perfect husband, Prem, from a wealthy and wonderful family. They have a six month engagement period and the movie is about how, even though the marriage is arranged, they grow to love each other.

The movie stars Amrita Rao who I have not seen since Main Hoon Na and Shahid Kapoor. She looked different, but maybe it was because she was not playing a tomboy. I liked her more in MHN though.  Shahid looked really baby faced in this film and I much prefer his more recent ones where he has grown up. They were cute together though and I would love to see them make a movie together again now (this one was from 2006). Shahid’s father in the film was one of my favorite “dad” actors, Anupam Kher. Just love that guy!

The music was quite beautiful in the movie, especially my favorite “Mujhe Haq Hai“. I also love movies that show the different ceremonies for engagements, weddings, holy days, and festivals. It is very interesting to me. In “Tere Dware Pe Aai Baraat” you see snippets from the wedding of Prem and Poonam. This movie is not always happy though, so have a few tissues on hand. Hope you enjoy!

Spreading the Bollywood love!

Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham

I just love this film! The first time I watched K3G was with my grandma. She had never seen a Bollywood film before and I had just received the copy I ordered. We sat down to watch it and were both completely hooked. There are three main things I love about this movie.

1.)    The music and dancing are great. Shah Rukh Khan is always a great dancer but Amitabh Bachchan surprised me with his “Say Shava Shava” routine (he always seems so stiff to me, when he dances).  I also really enjoy “Suraj Hua Madham”, “Yeh Ladki Hai Allah”, and love “Bole Chudiyan‘. I have listened to them so many times, I like to sing along with the movie now.

2.)    The pairings in this movie are so perfect. The real life husband and wife, Amitabh and Jaya Bachchan, are great as the mother and father in the film. I love how he pulls the stool over for her when she fixes his tie. My favorite duo of Shah Rukh Khan and Kajol cannot be beat. Any movie where the two of them are together is a number one smash hit in my books. And then Hrithik and Kareena are pretty cute. It kills me that her character’s name is Pooja and they nickname her Poo! Gets me every time :). It has taken me awhile to warm up to Kareena Kapoor but, after Jab We Met, I kind of like her now. I have always loved Hrithik Roshan though.

3.)    Kajol. She is just so fantastic! She is my favorite actress in Bollywood. She is funny and cute and at the same time so beautiful. So much character in such a small package.

K3G is a funny, touching, and ultimately uplifting story of what makes a family and the bonds that hold it together.

Monsoon Wedding

Let’s start at the very beginning. A very good place to start. When you sing you begin with Do-Re-Mi. In Bollywood I began with Mon-soon-Wed-ding. Okay, corny…but true. Now I do not really consider Monsoon Wedding to be Bollywood, but it ignited my interest to go out and find more Hindi films.

In Auburn, where I hail from, it is a small town. In high school my Spanish teacher suggested I watch foreign films in Spanish as language practice and so I began to. Spanish films led to German, French, Portuguese, and Japanese films as well. I blew through most the foreign section at our Blockbuster and was looking for more, and really wished to see them in a real theater some day. We had little opportunity to see foreign/independent films at the theater until in 2001 when they started the Independent Film Series. I read about it in the paper and dragged my mom to the first film, Monsoon Wedding.

I was completely blown away. I loved everything about the movie. The colorful cast or character, with their fantastic clothes, and interspersed with the scenery of New Delhi. The music was great as well. The song sung during the Mehndi ceremony was awesome and I really liked “Chunari Chunari” too (not to mention the finale song “Aaja Nachle“). I loved the wedding preparations and the silly sweet wedding planner, Dubey, and his love for Alice. There were so many contrasting emotions and  people, and the story was great and well developed. I began to dream of an Indian style wedding of my own some day.

After leaving the theater, I went to see if there were any Hindi language films at the rental store and came away with two: Lagaan and Asoka. But those are for other posts.