Yesterday was Day of News, today is Day of Trailers. Ajay’s new movie, first teaser for Akshay’s next or, as I think of it, Reema Kagti’s next. And a song from Welcome to New York. And Veerey Ki Wedding, just to round things out.
Full disclosure: I really like this trailer. It legitimately made me exclaim “Awesome!!!!” at one line. But I also think, beyond my personal preference, it is a legitimately good film.
First, a new concept of hero and villain! The only other movie I can remember that made tax raids into a plot point was Special 26, and there it was a scam. The idea of making the tax man a hero and really exploring the dynamics of a raid is a rich and original narrative area.
Second, I actually like the message! Turning the focus of the film on tax evasion and the hidden rot it brings to society, that is great! Not creating new hatreds or stirring up emotions, but giving us a fun clever look at a new-to-film area of life, with an intelligent reminder of why taxes matter and why these raids aren’t just funny.
Third, excellent Ajay film!!!!! Way better than, for instance, Shivaay with the crazy macho heroics. Ajay can bring a sort of quiet intelligence to even his action hero parts, playing a tax man seems just about right for him.
Fourth, directing! Not surprised this is the No One Killed Jessica director, the story is similar (corruption and how it effects every day lives), but also the directing is similarly exciting. It’s not just people talking through a door, it’s the camera looking through the peephole in both directions, that’s cool,
Fifth, the dialogue! “the only time I left empty-handed was at my wedding.” !!!!!!!! LOVE IT!!!! That was the moment that made me go “AWESOME!”
Oh and 6th, most importantly, it kind of reminds me of The Untouchables and anything that reminds me of The Untouchables will win my heart.
Well this is super interesting! A high quality historical picture, none of that “oh just show up in any old dress you have” look to the extras of Veer. But more importantly, a film that sincerely attempts to grapple with the conflicting moments of the past.
Just based on the quick little flashes, it looks like it is going to deal with the Berlin Olympics, in all their chilling glory (must be hard to resist for a director anyway, doing a little Triumph of the Will version just for the powerful imagery of it). But also the confusion of representing a nation that you don’t feel is yours while keeping your true identity hidden. That Indian flag inside the jacket at the international stadium is an immediately powerful and memorable image.
And it is, possibly, one of those times when Akshay will actually bother to act. He doesn’t over act terribly any more, but there is a big difference between his performance in Airlift and Rustom. Or Patiala House and Tees Maar Khan. This looks like a complex difficult role, one where he will be the sole character taking us through decades of history, aging from a troubled young man to a restrained determined mature man. I’m excited!
And then there is the Welcome to New York song! Which gives me a good vibe for this movie in terms of acting and directing, what I was most worried about. Sonakshi’s last film, Noor, was definitely a reach in terms of her acting range. But this one, that sudden surprised smile when Diljit points to her in the bar, the suddenly serious expression, it gives me hope!
And the nice way we go from Sonakshi at the fountain to Diljit watching her, it gives me hope for the director Chakri Toleti, who previously has only done southern stuff. Also, has a film degree from the University of Central Florida. Huh! Not the best university, actually not a very good one at all, but a legitimate university, accredited and stuff, meaning he got more film training than, for instance, Ranbir Kapoor at his little 6 month unaccredited New York school. Might explain why this feels a little more professionally put together, in terms of things like camera movements and things. Not exciting, but not terrible.
Finally, Veerey Di Wedding! Which mostly I am pumped about because it is a small silly rom-com with a wedding backdrop. A distinctly Indian/Hindi genre, and a nice break after all these big “ooooooooooo Western-style!” kind of movies.
And a distinctly low budget Indian kind of group behind it. Director is Ashu Trikha, who hasn’t really done much, ad films and TV and stuff. But has been hanging around as various assistant director type positions since 1999, love it! And the writer is Dilip Shukla who has a huge filmography, including dialogues for Andaz Apna Apna. So he’s fine by me! Pulkit Samrat is apparently the star of the Fukrey movies? Which were of course the little hidden hits of the past few years. And Kriti Kharbanda, the heroine, just played the heroine in a similar movie Shaadi Main Zaroor Aana last year, plus a bunch of Telugu movies.
I love all of this! Songs and directors and writers and actors who are just putting this together and having fun with it and looking to make a little money, not to change the film industry or win box office records.