Show Me the Romance

No cherubs. No doilies. No crap.

Archive for the tag “Bollywood”

Friday Frivolity: Bring on the Pulp

I tweeted a couple of times today about John Carter—the new movie based on 19th/20th century author Edgar Rice Burroughs (of Tarzan fame)—and the decidedly mixed reviews.

The reviews range from pans verging on the eloquent:

John Carter is one of those films that is so stultifying, so oppressive and so mysteriously and interminably long that I felt as if someone had dragged me into the kitchen of my local Greggs, and was baking my head into the centre of a colossal cube of white bread.

To the rather glowing:

For me, this is the first movie of its kind in a very long time that I’d willingly sit through a second or even third time.

Knowing my rather pedestrian tastes (did anyone see me give a Bollywood rom-com 4 arrows?) and the fact that I’ve been fascinated by old pulp fiction ever since I stumbled upon a row of dusty Ian Fleming novels in my college library, I’m fairly certain I could be entertained by this movie. The only trick is convincing my husband to spend a few hours with a movie his favorite critic called mediocre.

Wish me luck!

If I’m successful, I may even post a Show Me the Romance review for John Carter–reviewing only the romance, of course :-).

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Movie Review: Jab We Met

Jab We Met
Movie (142  minutes)
Starring Shahid Kapoor and Kareena Kapoor (no relation)

Feeling like getting your romance fix with colorful scenery, bright clothes, and the occasional bout of energetic dancing? Give Bollywood a shot. The crossover hit Bride and Prejudice (2004) introduced many of us to Indian movies, so if you saw that, and didn’t mind the occasional song or impulsive block-party dance breaking out mid-scene, try Jab We Met (available on Netflix’s online streaming service through May of this year).

The Premise

A dejected businessman (Shahid Kapoor) meets a whirlwind of a girl (Kareena Kapoor) on a train. She draws him into her life, exasperating him, teasing him, goading him into a better understanding of himself—until she discovers that her version of reality is not exactly the same as the real world.  Think Forces of Nature, but funny. And with actual chemistry between the leads.

The Pain

Subtitles aren’t for everyone (the film is in Hindi, with the actors slipping English phrases in and out of their speech). The only real pain I can remember is some occasionally draggy pacing. Some of the special effects are—unintentionally—laugh out loud funny. Also, prepare yourself for some maudlin singing sequences. To all these . . . just go with it. You’ll enjoy yourself more.

The Payoff

The leads are so much fun. Geet (the heroine) is a true force of nature. Who can  blame Aditya (the hero) for getting sucked into her orbit. He treks with Geet through the Indian countryside, confronts her hilarious bear of a grandfather, and navigates the wilds of her family all while rediscovering his spirit and his own charming smile. Of course he’s going to fall in love—and with a smile like that, it’s no wonder that she does, too.

Rating:

4 out of 5 arrows

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