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Thursday, 30 October 2014

Marvel MARVEL MARVEL!!! You Sweet Sweet Company :D



Marvel Studios

...Blew Everything Out of The Water


This week Marvel Studios dropped a bomb on the world. Even before I could get to providing my own breakdown of events on Age of Ultron-after that amazing trailer released-, they provide us with news on coming attractions for the third phase of their epic cinematic universe.

Marvel has taken the world by storm since 2008 and they will continue to do so for a long time, even though the Comic Book Movie bubble might burst.

So I've decided, when I fell like getting of my ass I will decode each of these announced movies and what they'll mean for the MCU going forward. Of course, this is beginning with The Avengers: Age of Ultron.

That is if I get of my lazy ass. Till then enjoy these title cards from the next set of MCU movies including the new phase. (They will be linked later with the breakdown posts, once again if I make them)

http://www.geeksofdoom.com/GoD/img/2013/07/2013-07-21-avengers_aou_title.jpg 

The Sequel to The third highest grossing film of all time; The Avengers



 
Ant-Man has been announced as the film capping off Phase 2, rather than starting Phase 3. This means there's going to be a lot of repercussions from the second Avengers to be dealt with


 
Iron Man vs. Captain America. This one's going to be a big one and a Cap movie will once again bring change to the MCU. 


 

The first new hero for Phase 3 and one that blows the door wide open for the mystic in Marvel. Biggest Question; Will Sherlock star Benedict Cumberbatch sign on as the titular character? 



With a changed date, the newest anti-heroes on the block return. Are the Guardians set to take Thanos or will Peter find his father. 



As Norse mythology points it out; Ragnarok is the end of times. Thor and Loki's last stand has come, will we see Hemsworth and Hiddleston ever again in the MCU?


 

The first minority character for Marvel in a solo film, appearing years before DC's own Cyborg. Let's hope Marvel does justice to the King Batman of Marvel. With the charismatic Chadwick Boseman set to play the role, there's no worries. 


 

Marvel's first female solo film, and one that heads off in space. Whose going to play the character is the first big question?


 

The X-Men of the Marvel universe. Hints of their arrival have been iminent from long, from Quicksilver to Scarlet Witch and Skye of Agents of SHIELD. Not to mention Vin Diesel lobbying for the title role of Black Bolt, after already stealing our hearts as Groot. 


 

The two part finale to the battle against Thanos. The first will be before the aforementioned two films, the other after.There are a lot of questions, will this be the end of the MCU altogether? I hope not. Will all the original Avengers reunite? I hope so. Will this be the anticipated crossover between Avengers, Guardians and Inhumans? With two parts, I'd bet my life it is. 


Once again let's hope I can get of my ass to breakdown each of these. Still it will take time.



'Nuff Said

Aneesh Raikundalia

Friday, 24 October 2014

Underdog Awards 2015 Edition: The Pre-Prelude



Underdog Awards 2015 Edition

Prelude 

or

The Unexpected Virtue of Boredom 

 

http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-655dPk5-BKs/UyKQCW4JfqI/AAAAAAAABLU/teBsuW-1L7U/s1600/Underdog+trophy.jpg

As I've been saying all along, it's awards season and there's a lot more coming from my blog about the Road to the Oscars.



This also means it will be time to prepare for my now annual Underdog Awards. Last year it weighed on me, that a lot of films never got their due at the end of the year. As such I created the Underdog Awards for the underrated/under-appreciated films of the year 2013.



The problem was, that I hadn't watched enough films for this to really work out, so I had to rush through multiple films across few days. This time round, I don't have the luxury to do that but I do have the time to watch at most two movies per day. This gives me enough time to gather data on a bunch of films that could be top contenders at the Underdog Awards next year.



Of course this doesn't mean that I'll get every film, so in the comments below I would urge you to name me any films you think could be contenders in the categories I have shown below.



On another note, since I'm so bored and I'm doing this post this early; I might as well rehash the rules to the awards.



-These are underdog awards, as such underrated pieces of cinema will be reflected. I could even nominate aspects of films that themselves will be nominated at the Oscars. Even nominate those that have already been nominate e.g.. Last years Adapted Screenplay winner Before Midnight, was also a nominee (but loser) at the Academy Awards.



-Since I'm so generous each award has honorable mentions. The best film award contains 20 nominees, The director and acting and now cinematography awards includes 10 nominees. While the others include 5 nominees.



-Last year, I didn't allow Comic Book Movie nominees. This year I've made the exception, considering how amazing the big three of Cap 2, X-Men DOFP and GoTG were.



-Also this year I decided to expand the set of awards; including awards for Production Design, Costume Design, VFX, Foreign Film and Documentary Feature. 

-For Foreign Language Feature, it will be like the Oscars; one film per language. The difference being that I will not select any film that was already in the list of nominees or in consideration eg. Liar's Dice is this years entry for India to the Oscars, if it doesn't make it to the top five then it still wont be considered here cause it got selected at least. Although of fear over bias, I might not select any Indian entry at all. 

-Also foreign language aspects such as actors can be nominated in other categories in a controlled amount apart from overall Best Film award.  

-Finally, films selected for nomination will be dependent on their release. Each film selected will have been Widely Released in the USA in the Year 2014. For foreign language and documentary, the rule is exempted. 



For more on what the Underdog Award are, read this: http://comicaper.blogspot.in/2014/02/underdog-awards-2014-coming-soon.html





Below is the table of categories in the Underdog Awards 2015 and the nomination slots for each award;


Underdog Award for Best Film





















Underdog Award for Best Director
Underdog Award for Best Cinematography




















Underdog Award for Best Editing
Underdog Award for Best Production Design










Underdog Award for Best Costume Design
Underdog Award for Best VFX










Underdog Award for Best Actor In A Leading Role (Male)
Underdog Award for Best Actor In A Leading Role (Female)




















Underdog Award for Best Actor In A Supporting Role (Male)
Underdog Award for Best Actor In A Supporting Role (Female)




















Underdog Award for Best Breakthrough Performer
Underdog Award for Best Ensemble Cast




















Underdog Award for Best Original Screenplay
Underdog Award For Best Adapted Screenplay










Underdog Award for Best Soundtrack
Underdog Award for Best Score










Underdog Award for Best International Film
Underdog Award for Best Documentary












PS: Nothing related to the above but you'll be shocked as to why the next post after the Omkara review wasn't for Haider, but that will come when I can watch the film a third time as I'm building to writing both a review and full on analysis (like I did with Miss Lovely earlier this year)

'Nuff Said

Aneesh Raikundalia

Wednesday, 15 October 2014

Reel Reviews: Vishal Bhardwaj's Shakespearian Trilogy; Omkara (2006)



Magneto's Movies

Reel Reviews

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/9/9d/Omkarapromoposter.jpgMovie: Omkara

Director: Vishal Bhardwaj

Cast: Ajay Devgan as Omkara 'Omi' Shukla, Saif Ali Khan as Ishwar 'Langda' Tyagi, Kareena Kapoor as Dolly Mishra, Deepak Dobriyal as Rajan 'Rajju' Tiwari, Vivek Oberoi as Keshav 'Kesu' Upadhyaya, Konkona Sen Sharma as Indu Tyagi with Bipasha Basu as Billo Chamanbahar and Naseeruddin Shah as Bhaisaab

Genre: Crime/Drama

Score: 9.0/10

Pros:-The film revels in Othello's tragedy encompassing it with intriguing racial, criminal and political commentary of the Hinterlands

          -Themes of loyalty, jealousy, love and psychology invade the script giving it a sense of purpose and depth to the tragic plot

          -Tone of the screenplay is kept to point, never meandering into any melancholy or melodrama. Drama is restrained in the film even in a tense climax 

          -A much more faithful adaptation with only few changes that add extra levels to characters including a Richard III like Iago and Dolly-Omkara's impending marriage adding tension to the film

          -The dialogues are so immersed in the locales it feels like they're felt rather than just written

          -Characters are complex and engaging while adapted perfectly. Standout ideas being race considering caste for Omkara (Othello) and the puppeteer stirring emotions and the motion of the plot in the form of Langda (Iago)

          -Action is shot with dynamic brilliance capturing the grit of the situation. The camera works itself through the setting divulging its murkiness and base color palette with the cinematography juxtaposing darks and lights for important sub text. Shots also pay attention to the claustrophobia of situations.

          -The editing is crisp as it adds a sense of tension to the slow burning drama

          -Bhardwaj well understands the lingo and customs of his setting while molding it into the prowess of Shakespeare's written word. He also extracts surprising performances from all of his cast

          -The whole cast is sublime. Dobriyal leaves a lasting impression with the way he handles the heartbreak and slyness of his character. Oberoi emotionally tugs at you heart with his bad boy attitude and moments of emotional outburst. Sharma starts of slowly building to something remarkable with he striking delivery but more importantly her grasp of emotions on hand

          -Kareena Kapoor exudes the ethereal beauty of a character reflecting it with an innocence and purity captured through her expressions

          -Devgan is stellar as the hard hitting brooding protagonists. He mines the depth of the last few minutes with inspiring turn of emotions while keeping in check the earlier characteristics.

          -But the show is stolen by Saif Ali Khan. From the first scene all we can see is Langda Tyagi, it's a testament to his skill that he takes something unusual to him and turns it into a performance that is equally chilling as it is pitiable as he uses his chameleon like ability to drive the plot forward. His chemisty with Dobriyal, heck with everyone, heck all the male men's chemistries are brilliant.

          -The score has a methodological omnipresence through out the film. Capturing both moments of gleeful romance and tense mind game and psychological breakdowns

          -Despite being item filled, songs carry context of their own in terms of both revealing character and back story





Cons:-The writers don't convincingly portray certain plot points. The film meanders yet never develops the idea of why Dolly loves Omkara or why Omkara is susceptible to Langda's words since it jumps a tab bit with that

           -The films focus on Langda leaves the other characters far underdeveloped 

           -The commentary regarding crime politics and Omkara's caste issues are just scratched on the surface

           -Bhardwaj indulges himself in the world, especially with his music

           -The score takes time to get going, initially being too much masala. Despite great meaning, the songs in the film could have been reduced by one or two. 

Best Scene: Langda deep in regret and anger over Omkara choosing Kesu, smashes his head on his mirror and spreads his blood on his head in a manner as selecting himself as general, a hollow fantasy but the signs to comes of the monster Langda will become

Best Performance: Saif Ali Khan as Ishwar 'Langda' Tyagi 

Best Dialogue: 'Bewakoof aur chutiye mein dhaage bhar ka farak hota haiga bhaiya. Dhage ke ingay bewakoof aur ungay, chutiya. Aur jo dhaaga kheeche lo, to kaund haiga bewakoof aur kaund hai chutiya, carod rupiye ka prasan hai bhaiya.'-Langda Tyagi

(A thin line (or thread) separates the fool from the dumbass. On one end of the line lies the fool and on the other, the dumbass. Upon snapping the line it's a million dollar question as to who's the fool and who's the dumbass, brother.)

The second of the Shakespeare trilogy by Vishal Bhardwaj; the tragedy of Othello 


Friday, 10 October 2014

Reel Reviews: Vishal Bhardwaj's Shakespearian Trilogy; Maqbool (2003)



Magneto's Movies

Reel Reviews


Movie: Maqbool

Director: Vishal Bhardwaj

Cast: Irrfan Khan as Miyan Maqbool, Tabu as Nimmi, Pankaj Kapur as Jahangir Khan/Abbaji, Piyush Mishra as Kaka, Ankur Vikal as Riyaz Boti, Ajay Gehi as Guddu, Masumeh Makhija as Sameera Khan, Shammi Narang as Mr. Bhosle with Naseeruddin Shah as Inspector Purohit and Om Puri as Inspector Pandit

Genre: Crime/Drama

Score: 9.0/10

Pros:-A near perfect brooding look into Shakespeare's tragic Macbeth with dominating themes of sin, lust, greed, power and family
          -The dialogues are well engaged in the culture of the characters and the sub text of the meanings of each plot point and motivations
          -Bhardwaj and Tyrewala make commendable changes to the play that help add depth and weight to the film plot. The change of Nimmi (Lady Macbeth) being Abbaji's (Duncan) mistress gives way for more layers to characters
          -As equal as Macbeth, Maqbool is unsatisfied with his impotency and is a character eventually arrogant but drowned by his guilt. The complexities create for a compelling arc.
          -Lady Macbeth is equally well adapted into Nimmi. The extension of Abbaji's role allows him to be a much more fleshed out character than Duncan as a ruthless and respected man that helps juxtapose between him and Maqbool
          -Bhardwaj adapts the play into a criminal element with gutso. He adds his own commentary through the relations of his characters and the changes to their stances from a female Malcolm to a feisty Fleance and two cops for the Witches
          -The camera dives into the darkness of the world but more importantly its protagonists actions. It works best when tying itself to the riveting pace of Maqbool's guilty conscious.  
          -Irrfan Khan is sensational as Maqbool, capturing his insecurities and his prowess with aplomb. He works his eyes magnificently in the damning moments of silence. Tabu matches him as she revels in Nimmi's sexuality, seductiveness, evil and wrenches your heart with her deep despair, regret and eventual madness. Their chemistry is electric.
          -The showstopper though is Pankaj Kapur. With more time in his hands, he presents the aura that drives Abbaji to be the central figure of pursuit and respect in this game. He has a brilliant command over the language and a skillful delivery.
          -The supporting cast is mostly effective especially Shah, Mishra and Puri
          -The score equally chilling as it is thrilling, while profoundly conveying the dread in both the loud moments with drums and the silences
          -Music is well versed in the cultural origins and the backgrounds of its characters...                             
          
Cons:-While it adapts its source perfectly in the second half, the setup has been so brilliant that the film sinks once Kapur is off screen. This is due to the unraveling of the play rather than the other actors
           -The crime and political element have trappings of clich├ęs due to the commentary the writers try to make   
           -The film runs overlong and could have done with some better editing to bring a certain dynamic to sparklingly written and visualized scenes while cutting parts that disrupt the flow.
           -Masume is too over the top with her expressions and really takes you out of certain scenes where we are to sympathize with her plight where as Gehi despite given the scope with Fleance lacks in matching the intensity necessary
           -...yet none of the songs are particularly memorable and some are clearly unnecessary to the situation

Best Scene: Maqbool carries out his plan to murder Abbaji amidst his breaking mind and ominous weather. Killing Abbaji, he sees his former father figure die while staring at him as an accusation towards Maqbool, of his crimes

Best Performance: Pankaj Kapur as Jahangir Khan/Abbaji

Best Dialogue: 'Aag ke liye paani ka dar bane rehna chahiye'-Purohit and Pandit, (The fear of water must always be there for the fire)


Here's my first review for Vishal Bhardwaj's sensational Shakespeare trilogy, this his adaptation of the tragedy of Macbeth

Monday, 6 October 2014

Boringness, Business...Overall Laziness! My Decision on the CBM Awards



Not Going to Finish These Posts

 

I'm not going to make excuses about how hard it is, how excrutiatingly slow my internet is or the fact that in the long run what I do wont really matter for me or any of you. 

So I've made the decision on the Underdog Awards. I am going to go ahead and add all the comic book movies to the list of nominees and see where they end up. 

Screw these weird CBM awards which take a heavy chunk of my time because I have to make these bad videos. I don't have the patience or the interest to work on something I'm not interested in. 

So there will be no Wham! Bam! Pow! CBM awards. I don't even know why I'm bothered to give an excuse for this, maybe cause I feel guilty on abandoning this despite it being just a silly blog post to waste my time. 

So enjoy and don't worry, come the Underdog awards, I'll have the motivation to complete them. 

'Nuff Said

Aneesh Raikundalia    

Saturday, 4 October 2014

Wham! Bam! Pow! Comic Book Movie Awards 2014 Part 2



Wham! Bam! Pow!

Comic Book Movie Awards 2014

Welcome Back!

In a year, not only are there comic book movies released to big fanfare, but there are also many interesting movies set towards appealing to the masses through the geek culture they've caught fire from. 

Such films are what the next award is about. The funny thing about this years entries are, that the geek movies haven't got as much traction as they should have considering how awesome they were. So remember these five movies will be contending in major Underdog Award categories, that's a guarantee. 

*Note: From now on the awards sections will have a nomination video, only the winner will get a description as to why they won (me and my laziness)*





And the winner is...

http://cdn1.sciencefiction.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/07/Dawn-of-the-Planet-of-the-Apes1.jpg

With themes of family, nature vs. nurture and ideologies about humanity. This sci-fi sequel to a prequel, has become the second best film of the whole franchise.

Dawn goes deep into capturing what makes the Planet of the Apes series compelling; the Apes and the main human at its core. In this case that human or humanity is Caesar, the leader of the Apes. The characters struggle to keep everyone together in peace and prove his leadership forms a powerful arc for the film, and is reminiscent of the kind of resolve and fortitude Mahatma Gandhi had.

At the head of this all is a scintillating cast bolstered by the leadership of one Andy Serkis. Seriously Academy give this man an Oscar already. 

Friday, 3 October 2014

Wham! Bam! Pow! Comic Book Movie Awards 2014 Part 1



Wham! Bam! Pow!

Comic Book Movie Awards 2014


Welcome to the first ever Wham! Bam! Pow! Comic Book Movie Awards!

As I told you in my previous post, this one's an award for the big summer films that just might not make it into my Underdog list because they're not small films and also have great critical acclaim. So let's see what will happen early next year when the Underdog Awards play. For now though we have these awards to satisfy my blogging needs.


So let's just get to it with the awards. The first award of the day is...