May 31, 2007
Pirates of the Carribean 3
May 29, 2007
Cast: Simon Pegg, Martin Freeman, Nick Frost, Jim Broadbent, Timothy Dalton
So did you see "Shaun of the Dead (2004)"? and did you like it?I did both, and therefore I HAD to see this one. Its the same team which made the earlier movie, and there is camp-iness galore all around. "Shaun..." was a spoof of the horror-zombie genre, while Hot Fuzz is essentially a spoof of the action-police-movie genre, and it appears that everyone was really having a lot of fun making it.
PC Nicholas Angel (Simon Pegg) is so good, he makes the rest of the London police force look bad (look out for: a cameo by Martin Freeman [The Hitchhiker's Guide to The Galaxy 2005]- so the rest of the department, including the chief inspector basically pull off a successful plot against him, getting him a promotion to Sergeant while being transferred to the sleepy village of Sanford- where there is zero crime.
Nic arrives in Sanford to find that his partner is the child-like but enthusiastic PC Danny Butterman (Nick Frost). The son of amiable Police Chief Frank Butterman (Jim Broadbent), Danny becomes an immediate devotee of Nic's obvious policing skills. He derides himself of not living up to his action-movie idols from movies like "Point Break" and "Bad Boys." It is mutual catharsis as Nic disillusions Danny of the fantasy police-type and attempts to bring disiplice in Danny and the local police force. On the other hand, Danny helps Nic loosen up.While this friendship develops, Nic begins to suspect some thing's afoot in Sanford. A series of gory accidents rock the village, and he suspects Simon Skinner, (Timothy Dalton) the local supermarket manager. Frank Butterman is quick to dismiss this as fantastic and a result of Nic's strenuous work in London. Nic's frustration grows, as do the crime scenes in Sanford.
All hell breaks loose as Nic makes the gruesome discovery that the majority of the village- the primary business owners, Frank, Simon, the local Rector and prominent farmers are a cult-type society. The society's sole objective is to have Sanford win the "Model Village" award year after year, and they have been eliminating all the folks whom they consider are contrary to that image (yes, really!)
Danny helps Nic get away, but half-way to London, Nic has an epiphany in a convenience store (yes! really!) and doubles back. He becomes a Rambo-Trinity-like one-man-army, and enlists the help of Danny, the 2 local police detectives and 2 other PCs to clean up Sanford.
Mayhem ensues, and after lots of shootings, car chases and general excitement during which NOBODY DIES(!!!!)- peace is restored to Sanford. Nic decides to stay back in the village rather than his go back to the big city.This is a great movie- you have to take it in the spirit it was made- campy and pure, nonsensical fun. Nic and Danny have great chemistry and their friendship is the basis of this movie, as was "Shaun.."- You gotta see it!
PS: Looks out for a speedy cameo (uncredited) by Peter Jackson- as the local Santa :)
May 24, 2007
Random Auditor-style Humor
CHUCK NORRIS AUIDITING TIPS!
- Chuck Norris does not accrue for expenses…he accrues for pain
- Chuck Norris does not use binders…all his workpapers are held together by hairs from his beard
- Chuck Norris does not use a ruler when making "power tickmarks"…. he naturally draws perfectly straight lines
- What’s in Chuck Norris’ snack drawer? Two words…baby kittens.
- Chuck Norris has a hard drive…but it doesn’t refer to what’s in his computer.
- Chuck Norris takes a 15 minute coffee break every 5 minutes
- When a partner asked if the client had any other long-term liabilities…Norris simply held up his fists
- If Chuck gets tired during the day he takes a nap….on the CEOs desk
- How does Chuck Norris test fixed assets? Answer: with a bottle of super glue and an ambitious hand
- Chuck Norris audits in the dark
- Chuck celebrates the end of each audit by burning the client’s house down. Why? Cause its just what Chuck likes to do.
- How does Chuck Norris hole punch? Answer: with a shotgun and an extremely accurate aim
- Chuck Norris not only assigns useful lives….he takes them away
- Chuck Norris does not have to dial 9 first
- Chuck Norris erases pencil marks with his beard…it erases pen too
- If he finds an exception, Chuck Norris amortizes pain over the remaining useful life of the client
- Chuck Norris has a full time plumber assigned to him for when he uses the restroom
- Chuck Norris irons his shirts with a blowtorch and a rusty piece of sheet metal
- Chuck Norris’ posting threshold for pain….unlimited.
- Chuck Norris highlights in black
May 21, 2007
Big Brother- no not the show; this is a movie
Cast: Sunny Deol, Farida Jalal, Priyanka Chopra
Q: What do all these films (and a ton of others) have in common?
Ans: Sunny Deol, playing the middle-class hero who turns to violence when faced with oppression in a world of corruption.
Honestly, the man has to be pretty dense if he cant see the stagnation in his own movie career. Maybe Sunny should make movies instead- stick to production if he can't direct.
Sigh- anyways lets cut to the chase. Deodhar Gandhi (Sunny) lives in Delhi with his mom (Farida), wife (Priyanka), brother and sister. The mother generally encourages him to go and beat up people (yes really) since she wants him to protest corruption and wrong-doing. When some guy throws acid on his sister's face, he decides to kill all perpetrators of crime against women.
When things get too hot for Deodhar in Delhi, his mother pushes him to Bombay. Of course things go crazy in B'Bay ( I still refuse to call it Mumbai) as well, where he works as a rickshaw (cab) driver. Things look up a bit for the viewer here, since Raju Shrivastava enters in the traditional vidushak (comedian) role to add some levity to the movie in scenes, and Danny Denzongpa enters in the role of a evil police officer.
Deodhar tries to lead a life on the straight and narrow, but fails when local dons make life difficult for him and his family, he (yet again) kills the perpetrators.
Deodhar having run foul of the head don "Bhau," we are all prepped for a final showdown- so on and on the movie stretches, until we reach the expected end- amongst tons of confusion, borrowed plots from various movies and plenty of violence, Deodhar kills all (including the Home Minister and the Chief of Police, both currupt), and gives homself up.
The songs- and the movie has quite a few of them- are pedestrian. The movie itself may have been OK as an egalitarian fantasy- if only one didn't get such a strong sense of deja vu while watching it- avoid.
What movie are you?
What Classic Movie Are You?
personality tests by similarminds.com
May 17, 2007
Cast: Irfan Khan, Tabu, Kalpen Modi, Subayasachi Chakravarthy, Zuleikha Robinson, Jacinda Ratcliff, Sahira Nair
I hate gushing about anything. But late into last night, I kept talking to my husband about The Namesake, having watched it yesterday evening with him, Alice (co auditor :D- there Alice, you are now a part of this- like it or not) and Steve (my rock of a friend who I have mentioned before on these webpages).
Alice and I ran off from work at the unheard of hour of 6:30pm, having worked a measly 10 hours (oh the evil irony of our work hours)- do not even think for a minute that I didn't make up for it- I started at work 7am the next day and 8am today.
The movie opens with a young Ashok (Irfan) travelling to Jamshedpur by train to see his grandfather. An older fellow passenger speaks to him, encouraging him to go abroad and see the world, which Ashok resists, saying he prefers to travel the world via reading- hinting that he wants to go back to the Nikolai Gogol he is currently engrossed in. At that moment, the train crashes, and Ashok's life is changed forever.
Ashok survives the crash and while in convalescence, begins to rethink his life. Two years pass, and we next see him in Kolkata- we learn that he has since moved to New York, and is now back to find a wife. His parents arrange a match for him with Ashima (Tabu). Tabu's intro is perhaps my favorite scene in any movie in a long time. While waiting to go into the living room where Ashok, his parents and her family are talking, she pauses in the hall, and notes that the visitors have taken off their shoes- most attractive of which she finds Ashok's "Made In USA" pair. She slips in her feet and pantomimes an imaginary Ashok, revealing at once her own exuberance, independence and dreams.
A quick wedding follows, and Ashima settles herself in New York, rearing 2 kids Gogol (Kalpen) and Sonia (Sahira). The kids grow up, she becomes a librarian. Gogol undergoes the process of self-realization, which is the focal point of the movie since after all, he is the namesake. However, Irfan and Tabu steal the movie and make it the soul-searing experience that it is. Irfan speaks volumes with his eyes, his gestures. He doesn't speak very much in the film- but makes every movement count. He dies- alone, of a heart-attack while on a lecturing stint out of state- at which point me and Alice were crying copiously and loudly in the theatre.
Upon Ashok's death, Ashima regathers the threads of her life. She gets Gogol (unsuccessfully) and Sonia (hopefully she fares better- we never find out) married, sells her house, and moves back to Kolkata to learn music- something she had left behind when she married. And this is where the movie closes- with Ashima practicing her music with the same teacher from her youth and Gogol rediscovering himself via Nikolai's writings and his father's memories.
This movie is perhaps Tabu's best ever. Where in Maachis she was the authentic Punjaban, in Hera Pheri the quintessential Maharashtrian, here she is the Bengali soul. How she accomplishes her characters is unfathomable to me- I am just blown away by her work. Through Ashima, she makes me see my own strengths and weaknesses- my energy, my need to embrace my Indian-ness and my goal of continuous self-actualization.
1 Quibble about the movie- the gratuitous nudity- it really wasn't needed. I am not a prude in the least, and do believe that nudity is sometimes necessary to a movie- any James Bond flick would be incomplete without it. But Mira Nair needs to realise that she is a global director enough by the classiness of her movie- naked butts, when needless, don't make a movie international/Oscar worthy- her craftsmanship is ample!
PS: Some very cool cameos- Subayasachi Chakravarthy as Ashima's dad- I LOVE his work! Also, the authoress Jhumpa Lahiri, in the movie based on her own Pulitzer-winning book as Jhumpa Maashi!
May 16, 2007
Jo Bole So Nihal- double eugh
Cast: Sunny Deol, Kamaal Khan
I saw "The Namesake" tonight- and cried buckets- but that review can wait for tomorrow. Tonight we have to run through Jo Bole So Nihal (He who speaks the Lord's name is satisfied). The words themselves are an integral part of the very beautiful Sikh religion. Sikhism is a popular religion in India, but the Sikh that is most colorful and exuberant of all is found in the Northern state of Punjab. That is where our story starts.
Nihal Singh (Sunny Deol) lives in Punjab with his family: dad (village headman), mom and sister Satnam. While out patrolling, One day Nihal comes across a suspicious-looking man called Romeo (Kamaal Khan). Romeo flees Nihal, who is later told that that Romeo is a terrorist. He is initially suspected of abetting terrorists and suspended.
Until this point, the movie is somewhat believable; fantastic but acceptable. The weirdness sets in from here on. Romeo's next attack is in the US, and the US police finds no better way to strengthen their defence than by inviting Nihal to the US to identify and find Romeo. Now even a baby can recognize the ridiculousness of the situation- but whatever.
So Nihal arrives in NY, generally behaves like a buffoon, and screams like a maniac. He appears to see Romeo on the street simply by accident (what? a terrorist is walking the streets, and it takes Nihal walking down the street, not the work of the combined police forces and the national gaurd to find him?!!).
Lots of confusion follows, during which Nhal acquires an Indo-American girlfriend, gets his mom to come to him and join him on a cruise (yes, really). Of course everything works out eventually- Nihal gets Romeo and the girl (sounds like a threesome).
This could have been an OK movie- what makes it bad is the implausibility of the situations, the constant shrieking and screaming by Sunny Deol, and the terrible portrayal of Sikhs. Sikhs are smart, hardworking people- why must they be the butt of so many jokes, to the extent of being caricatured by Sunny in this deplorable farce? It was good to see Kamaal Khan though- if for no other reason than to reminisce his singing days of "O o jaane jana." A very exhausting experience overall- never see it.
May 12, 2007
May 11, 2007
Say Salaam India- I feel sorry
Lets begin by saying that I love low budget movies. They can be like the movies Hrishikesh Mukherjee made in the 70s with Amol Palekar- beautiful and heart-warming, about everyman. They can be campy and just badly made, with the cast earnestly getting in on the fun, fearless and with verve. However, they can also just go horribly, horribly wrong- with good actors misused and story elements butchered on the editors table.
The story in a nutshell: 4 boys: Viru, Mahi, Shakeel and Guri from the Tejpur Government School (Government Schools are, like the name suggests, run by the government and run on extremely skimpy resources in any part of India) are rejected by some cricket team tryouts in their city. Their own school does not have a team- they consider themselves too poor. Hari (Sunjay Suri), a maverick coach, is thrown out by a posh school in town, 'cos his team is too bratty to listen to their coach when he commands discipline. Sunjay goes and offers to coach the Tejpur kids for free, also providing free gear (he makes no money, yet gets corporate sponsors- mmm- how does this work, folks?). The movie culminates with the Tejpur team facing off the posh school's bratty team, which is now lead by a hirsute Harry (hairy Harry- hee- played by Milind Soman) who is manipulative and a cheat. Of course the poor, downtrodden team from Tejpur wins.
May 10, 2007
Things to Do
So here are some things I want to do for and to myself, which I believe will make me a better and happier person:
1. Be Assertive At Work: I am way to nice as an auditor- need to toughen up the girl a bit. Take things easy, be fearless and emphatic.
2. Be Nice at Home: Be nicer and more understanding- my husband is already super good to me- maybe I should be good"er" too.
3. Don’t Postpone Things: Kaal Karo so Aaj Kar, Aaj Karo So Ab.
4. Take Time out for Friends & Myself: God has given me some really great friends- my new strategy- call/email at least 2 friends a week- its easy to lose touch. My friends ARE the type who will love me even after a gap of 20 yrs- but that's no reason to take them for granted.
5. Don’t Be Self Critical: Its OK to make mistakes- everyone does.
6. Don’t Take Things Personally: People are usually just bothered about their shortcomings, mistakes and desires. If they say something negative, it is not a reflection on me in any way.
7. Just Get Things Done: Rather than sit and build castles in the air, Karma/Right Action are a better way to go.
8. Don’t Overthink: After considering all possible aspects, maybe consult one more person, and then get to it- don't kill the task with overthinking.
9. Pass CPA: Study an hour every night dammit- NOW.
10. Get Work-Life Balance: Work is work, home is home- don't die in either arena- work and play hard, and move on.
Shakalaka Boom Boom- groan, moan and shudder!
Cast: Bobby Deol, Upen Patel, Kanagana Raut, Celina Jaitley, Anupam Kher.
Suneel Darshan must have lost his mind- there can be no other reason why he would have directed and produced this catastrophe.
Lets get the ordeal over with: AJ (Bobby Deol, looking his age (45) with a puffy and tired face), is supposedly the best singer in New York. Do not ask me how an Indian singing in Hindi would be the best singer in New York (whats the criteria for the "best" singer? why New York? shouldn't he be on the national charts? - no one tells me anything!). He is entranced by Ruhi (Kangana- now this is one talented woman- why the heck did she do this movie?!), an upcoming singer. Ruhi is initially attracted to AJ, but then is stalked (yes, really) and wooed (apparently the 2 go hand in hand) by Reggie (Upen Patel, looking adequately dishy), another singer. Somewhere in there is also Sheena (Celina Jaitley), who is miffed with Reggie 'cos he ditched her.
For a movie about a bunch of singers, this movie has really awful songs. But whatever. Moving on- AJ tries to stub out the upcoming Reggie's career with Sheena's help. He even manages to do so, but once he has literally gotten Reggie to death's door, he himself looses his hearing in a freak accident. Reggie gains back health and fame.
That's it really. And oh- Anupam Kher plays Reggie's dad, perpetually abused by his son, who needs to learn some respect! I think we are supposed to feel Reggie's angst- that never really happens. If anything, you just feel reallllllly angry with him! I'm not sure either Kangana or Celina knew what they were supposed to do in the movie- their roles appear to have been edited out- badly, since they sometimes appear to initiate action, but we never see any follow up to those scenes. It was awful. Bobby Deol should give up movies. Seriously. Enough said.
May 8, 2007
Fire in my backyard!
This dialogue, from the opening sequence of every one of the 17 episodes of this TV series encapsulates the essential 60s anthem- the revolution against the "system."
May 4, 2007
Cast: Toby Maguire, Kirsten Dunst, James Franco, Topher Grace, Thomas Hadden Church.
I just saw the movie, and before plunging into the review, would like to take a moment to note that the movie has been simultaneously released in, amongst other languages, Bhojpuri! Being from UP, the language is close to my heart- I sure spent enough time in my teens talking to the household helpers, who were mostly form the villages, and fluent in Bhojpuri/Awadhi. So in their collective honor, I will attempt to bring some Bhojpuri flavor to this review.
So welcome to Spiderman 3, or मकड़ी ब्बुआ लाल छमिया (Spider man/boy and the red haired young girl- my racy tribute to the prim Mary Jane's tresses).
The movie possesses a fairly strong Bollywood flair- could it be that Sam Raimi saw a bunch of Bolloywood potboilers before making this one? It opens to find Spidey (मकड़ी ब्बुआ) the toast of New York (नया यौरक), with Mary Jane (our own लाल छमिया) having finally achieved her 1st starring role on Broadway (चौड़ी सड़क?? eugh!). With a head swollen pretty large from all the adulation he is getting, and encouragement from his Aunt May (बुढी बुआ माई?), Spidey/Peter is set to propose marriage to Mary Jane (मकड़ी बबुआ चले लाल छमिया को बनाने बहुरिया). But before wedding bells (and indeed we hear none in the movie), there are battles to be fought and won.
There is a initial battle with the new Goblin/Harry (James Franco), during which he bops his head on a wall, and loses his short term memory (Bollywood occurrence #1). The bop erases the death of his father, the Green Goblin (William Dafoe) from his mind- he only remembers his dosti (friendship- Bollywood occurrence #2) with Peter Parker and Mary Jane. Spidey is just too happy to get his friend back and avoids much explanation. When our Mary Jane is ignored by Spidey/Peter (In favor of the greater good- Bollywood occurrence #3- work before romance (or , करतवया before dalliance)) Harry happily fills in. However, one kiss from Mary Jane, and he remembers everything again (Bollywood occurrence #4), and plots revenge on Spidey.
Of course as we know, like any Bollywood movie, that implies Peter and Harry (or Spidey and the New Goblin), will have one more big fight scene, where Peter wins and Harry's face is deformed. This was also the precise moment I fell in love with James Franco- I mean James with a perfect face is just a pretty boy, but with the scarring- man he sure has character!
The villains have been working overtime in the interim- The Sandman (Thomas Hadden Church) and Venom (Topher Grace). It all wraps up very nicely indeed with the villains vanquished and the heroine rescued- but- WHY DID they have to kill Harry?????????? Like 5minutes after I fall in love with him, he is killed off, with Spidey sobbing over him like a sissy- that was a bit of a damper. Also didnt want Venom killed- hope he is resurrected in a future sequel.. :D Not to miss: Toby in his evil avtaar, strutting down Broadway 'a la John Travolta in Saturday Night Fever- priceless!
PS: Also not to miss- Bruce Campbell in a delicious cameo as the snobby, adorable and brilliant maitre d' of the hotel Spidey invites Mary Jane to- for every Ash/Evil Dead fan out there, his act alone is worth watching the movie for.
May 3, 2007
What's Your Celtic Horoscope?
My Celtic Horoscope-
|You Are A Rowan Tree|
You are full of charm and cheer. You light up a room.
And while you crave attention, you do it without ego.
You are an interesting mix of contradictions - and very unpredictable.
You are both dependent and independent, calm and restless.
You are passionate, emotional, gregarious, and (at times) unforgiving.
Name: Namaste London
Year of Release: 2007
Cast: Akshay Kumar, Katrina Kaif, Rishi Kapoor, Clive Standen, Upen Patel, Javed Sheikh.
And there was weeping and gnashing of teeth and tears of rage and pain- that was me during the movie, which I mostly fast-forwarded through.
Manmohan (Rishi) is sick of his daughter Jaz/Jasmeet's (Katrina) clubbing, and decides that the best way to put an end to this is to bring her to India and marry her off to a "nice Indian boy". (Now this is actually a plausible premise, since my dad often makes this threat to my sister. He figures he can "fix" her teenage tantrums by bringing her to India- but that's another story). So Jaz leaves for the old country with mom and dad, leaving behind a firangi (Foreigner- usually implies White) boyfriend called...Charlie Brown (Clive)- rofl. Charles Shulz must be rolling in his grave.
Once there, a host of eligible bachelors are paraded before Jaz. None of these quite work out, until Manmohan and family land up at his ancestral home in a village in Punjab. Arjun (Akshay), an old friend's son appears to Manmohan the right guy for his daughter (why we ask- why??) and he lays down the law to Jaz- marry Arjun or else.. (or else what??- this innocent blogger asks). Jaz decides to call her friend Imran/Emran Khan (more celebrity name dropping- also Hindu-Muslim bhai-bhai (brotherhood) & Indo-Pak love slogans- 'cos Emran (Upen) and his dad Parvez (the venerable Javed Sheikh- sad role, but love and respect the man) are Paki transplants in the UK), and gets money wired to her via Western Union (the blatant advertisement $ may have been essential to get this movie to the theaters) so that she may get herself back to the UK. Whew! Of course, one wonders why she doesn't have a credit card handy to do the job- maybe because Emran, after sending the requisite $, suggests she marry the guy, bring him to the UK and dump him there. (What kind of a dumb idea is that? Why marry him anyways??? -At this point, we just accept everything as simply a tool for the director to march ahead with the damned plot)
We find that Jaz does go ahead with it- marries the guy, brings him to the UK (what- you mean he doesn't want her to stay back in apna (our) Punjab?- more convenient plot holes) and then announces before her family and the Khans (Parvez, his wife and Emran) that she is dumping Arjun. Arjun is heartbroken, but tells her he will stick around until she actually marries Charlie Brown (hee- that name is too much, seriously).
Meanwhile, Emran has some drama of his own where he is in love with Susan (not only Christian, but White). His father is opposed to the match. Her parents, despite their disapproval, have 2 highly entertaining conditions to the wedding:
1- That Emran change his name to Emanuel, and convert to Christianity. (Ridiculous I know, but still plausible- wait till you hear #2 below)
2- That he sign an affidavit saying he is not a terrorist.
Seriously- this has to be the single most idiotic thing I may have ever heard in any movie. Can we please quit the propaganda against firangs and their evil ways and how we are supposed to teach them the right path (channel the Buddha here- right path, right thought, right action)?
Emran is going to go ahead and do this, but is stopped in time by Arjun (the good Hindu helping his other-religion neighbor in need?), and is shown- you guessed it- the RIGHT path! Emran goes bouncing back to Susan's, and declares to her parents and a large party of guests that he will not go with their plans for him, and offers Susan instead a chance to come back with him (is he gonna convert her too? like the real Emran Khan did his real wife Jemima?--we aren't told- lets just believe that us South Asians are generally inclusive folks).
In the interim, Jaz has gotten engaged to good ol' Charlie Brown (will Snoopy miss him? hee- cant help it), and the wedding preparations are underway. Arjun shows Charlie down and impresses Jaz (wins a soccer game against Charlie, dazzles him & his family/friends with Limca-Book-of-Records-style facts about apna Hindustan, dances in a club with goris (Fair/White girls/women)), but is that enough to secure Jaz as his wife?
It sure is. She runs out on Charlie at the altar, and we next see her riding pillion behind him on his dinky motorbike through apne Punjab de khet (the green fields of our Punjab) in a salwar-kurta outfit.
You know, I really love my country. But when folks like Vipul Shah make such horrendous movies, I get antsy. The movie is so implausible that one can only clutch one's head with sheer agony and groan. Katrina and Upen are cute, dumb, cannot talk and cannot act- that is fine- they should be regarded for ornamental purposes only- so expecting anything but beauty is the viewer's fault. But Akshay? his movies are simply getting more and more painful. Rishi and Javed are wonderful gentlemen who have great work behind them, therefore occasional follies like accepting this script must be forgiven them too. The making of this movie however, is just a insult- to everyone who watches movies and has some level of a functioning brain. Avoid.
May 1, 2007
Sarhad Paar- pretty good
Name: Sarhad Paar (Translation: "Beyond the Border)
Cast: Sanjay Dutt, Tabu, Mahima Choudhary, Chandrachur, Rahul Dev
"Umr guzregi kaise tere bin"- I can't get this song from the movie out of my head!
I decided to watch the movie primarily because (1) the hubby had gotten hold of it, (2) it is relatively unheard of, making me hope it would meet the B-movie criteria I always look for. So it came as a pleasant surprise that the movie is actually pretty good. To me, it seems to pick up almost where Maachis (1996, See: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0116950/; Useless information: Did you know that the legendary Gulzar's name is Sampooran Singh Gulzar?) left off. For those not in the know, Maachis was about the 90's terrorism of the Indian state of Punjab; of the persecution of Sikhs during the period- a really amazing movie which i won't go into depth here). Usingthe principal two cast members from the older movie (Tabu and Chandrachur), Sarhad..talks about Punjab post the 90's terrorism phase.
The movie opens to Pammi (Tabu) eagerly awaiting the return of her husband, Major Ranjit Singh (Sanjay). The Major was lost in terrorist clashes at the Indo-Pak border, and has been presumed dead, since his name is in no POW list. But since he isn't on any dead-man list either, Pammi as well as Simran (Mahima, playing the Major's sister) do not give up home, unlike the rest of their village, including the Major's uncle, the family patriarch.
And one day he does come home, but under sever trauma, unable to recognize anyone. While Pammi works hard to assist the Major remember his past, we also see that the preparations of Simran's wedding to Ravi (Chandrachur) are underway.
Alongside this we learn that the perpetrator of the Major's trauma was the terrorist known as Bakhtavar (Rahul Dev- a model turned actor who can actually act surprisingly well), whose mission appears to be Indo-Pak discord. Both the Indian and Pakistani police/army are after him, and are being assisted in this by his own father (the "good" Muslim), who is murdered towards the end of the movie in a scene exhibiting Bakhtayar's evil nature revelling in patricide.
The Major remembers his past and rejoins the army, with the sole aim of capturing Bakhtavar, which he is successful in doing. Along the way, he gets Simran married to Ravi, whom we learn is secretly in cahoots with Bakhtavar (dramatically opposed to Chandrachur's idealist, martyred terrorist in Maachis) for monetary gain. In the final showdown, the Major recaptures a fleeing Bakhtavar, but is waylaid by Ravi, who is then shot down by Simran (she embodies the hindi-movie fabled patriot giving up the pleasures of self for the country), clearing the way for the Major to avenge himself upon Bakhtavar. Whew!
My only quibble with the movie was the somewhat shoddy editing, which downplays some pretty fine acting by Tabu and Mahima (finally she gets out of the B-movie scene to do a decent act- for her sake I wish the movie had done well). Some scenes appear to spring at us from nowhere at all- the closing scene is particularily adrupt, and no closure is bought to Simran (what route does she take once her new husband is dead- no one seems to care, but I want to know!). Sunjay delivers, but looks older than his age (he is 48, but here looks to be in his 50s). One may assume his trauma contributed to his premature aging in the movie, as did perhaps the notorious TADA court cases in real life. While the patriotic dialogues get cheesy in parts, the conviction displayed by the entire cast is the redeeming factor of the movie.
I was rather sorry to read reviews of Sarhard.., most of which pronounced the movie as dated since the events under discussion were awhile ago and India-Pakistan are on the road to friendship (really? I do want to see that happen, but the friendship between the two nations remains uneasy at best). I do not see why that should date the movie in anyway- our past contributes to our present and future, and whether or not the movie's portrayal is historically correct (it isn't), the movie should be recognized for at least the emotion it envokes, as well as for the (mostly) brilliant acting of its actors.