• BlackBerry

    BlackBerry

    ★★★★

    Between this, Air, and Tetris, I think this one takes the cake. The central performances (Jay Baruchel & Glenn Howerton) are fantastic, and both manage to captivate us with their distinct mannerisms and quirks. The story itself is very compellingly told, with details covered from multiple angles, including business, tech, marketing, employee relations, and more. There's no question that Hollywood loves discussing corporate wins and losses (well, mostly wins) and BlackBerry is certainly among the finest I've seen. Howerton (playing Jim…

  • Reality

    Reality

    ★★★½

    This docudrama is a thrillingly dramatic 80-minute affair owing to its slow-burn, revelatory plot and solid performances from Sydney Sweeney and Josh Hamilton. Yes, it really rides a lot on Sydney's performance and the feeling of how the interrogration plays out in real time, intercut with details on the specifics of [redacted, haha]. Some of the editing choices (like the recurring distortions in the final 30 minutes) left me baffled and took me out of the film for a few…

  • Boo

    Boo

    ½

    Boo is a trainwreck of a horror film, just hilariously bad. What happened to A.L Vijay who made films like Madrasapattinam, Deiva Thirumagal, and Saivam? Here, the director exhibits zero control over his cast (everyone's competing for the worst performer award), the anthology-like script has no sense of logic or continuity (from the perspective of a horror flick, i.e.), and the twists are laughable. For a horror film, the film didn't manage to scare even in the slightest. Every trope…

  • Pachuvum Athbhuthavilakkum

    Pachuvum Athbhuthavilakkum

    ★★★

    Fahadh Faasil (re)enters the universe built by the Anthikkads (Sathyan, Anoop, and now the debuting Akhil) and almost single-handedly makes us care for a plot that offers little to no surprises and moves along at a very predictable pace. Don't be turned off by the 2h 51m run-time. Akhil Sathyan mostly treads the footsteps of his father while penning the script for Pachu (shortened), where the routine life of the protagonist suddenly takes a detour owing to the interference of…

  • Polite Society

    Polite Society

    ★★★½

    Nida Manzoor's debut feature film gives off strong Bend It Like Beckham vibes, yet it stays unique in how it chooses to tell the story. The sisters (played by Priya Kansara and Ritu Arya) are total showstealers and I enjoyed both their performances. People aren't wrong in saying Polite Society looks straight out of Edgar Wright's playbook - it features rich and opaque frames, the presence of absurd humour (there's an entire fight scene between the sisters in the house,…

  • Kathal

    Kathal

    ★★★

    The satire in Kathal isn't as biting as it should've been but it's at least making a few strides in the right direction. Everyone except for Sanya's character acts clownish (including the baddies) and that makes the stakes very low. Sanya, however, is a force to reckon with. She not only manages to light up the screen with her presence, but also goes on to show that she can handle mass moments (even if they're low-key) quite well.

    The laughs…

  • Pookkaalam

    Pookkaalam

    ★★½

    Ganesh Raj, who hails from the Vineeth Sreenivasan school of filmmaking, tackles the subject of infidelity in a long-standing marriage. As such, the protagonists here is a couple in their late 90s, played by Vijayaraghavan and KPAC Leela - both delivering very nuanced performances. While I like the beginning of the film that establishes their casual camaraderie and the end portion (though corny, still gets you to smile and shed a happy tear), the mid section had me caring a…

  • Sisu

    Sisu

    ★★★

    Sisu is a film that's utterly ridiculous but it's also self-aware. It merely wants to build a one-man killing machine (like John Wick, another Lionsgate franchise) with the stylistic choices of a spaghetti western, basically plowing his way through a troop of Nazi savages. The plot is pretty basic, and its segregation into different chapters, while somewhat uneven, helps invoke the feeling of reading a graphic novel. The cinematography too is such, featuring panoramic Finnish landscapes that are simply breathtaking.…

  • Anna Nicole Smith: You Don't Know Me

    Anna Nicole Smith: You Don't Know Me

    ★★½

    Vickie Lynn, who later became Anna Nicole Smith, had great ambitions. Her good looks and confidence helped her get out of her uneventful hometown in Texas, slowly making her way into Playboy and gradually, Hollywood. But her personal life remains an extremely sad one throughout. A conflicting childhood story, various boyfriends who were there for her body, an old-timer billionaire husband who funded her expensive lifestyle, a steady influx of drugs, a paternity case.. nothing's good in the conventional sense…

  • The Super Mario Bros. Movie

    The Super Mario Bros. Movie

    ★★★

    Once again, nostalgia has been nicely milked for over a billion dollars at the box office. This Aaron Horvath-Michael Jelenic directorial is purely a fanboy tribute and it wouldn't make much sense to the new generation (of gamers). But I wish there was more meat to the plot, characters, and the universe. Everything is built up in such a hurry that it makes you forget those endless hours you spent in front of the TV with a joystick in hand…

  • The Mother

    The Mother

    ★★

    I'm just tired of seeing Netflix stretch these one-liner ideas into subpar 2-hour action films with absolutely no recall value. Lucy Paez, who play's J Lo's daughter in the film, is the only one who puts up a decent performance. The action is mediocre, the supporting cast is pretty abysmal especially the antagonist, and the plot lacks any real progression. From the very first scene, we wait for the stretch where J Lo and her estranged daughter reconnect but it's…

  • The Covenant

    The Covenant

    ★★★½

    Guy Ritchie's last few films have been a mixed bag. They've always remained watchable because of the way he stages lengthy set-pieces, coupled with some wry humour. Nothing reached the heights of Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels or Snatch, as he continued to dabble in the action / thriller / heist / comedy genres. The Covenant is also an action thriller set against the backdrop of the two-decades-long Afghan War, but specifically focused on the journey of two characters…