May 29, 2010

Dennis Hopper - An instrumental icon in my filmic education

I thought I'd start off with my first non-Bollywood post with Dennis Hopper, because my love for films and the counterculture of the 60's and 70's started with Dennis Hopper. I'm not gonna pretend I knew him and fawn like a pretentious critic, but suffice it to say that i really respected his films and choices. I first happened upon Dennis Hopper late at night in a movie called Rebel Without a Cause, sure I was more focused on James Dean but Dennis made an impact with his side role as one of the way toooo old high schoolers in the film. In a far fetched way, Dennis like the late Macmohan only needed a few scenes to establish a presence. But I'd like to recount some of his key films that made me watch anything just for that lovely hippy voice!

1. Rumble Fish - many people would not have mentioned this small role in Francis Ford Coppola's teen film, but it was a good role for Dennis because you could see why Matt Dillon and Mickey Rourke's characters were so misguided and foolish, with a deadbeat alcoholic father. To be honest Dennis was one the best things in this film because he imbued such pathos to such a broken character.
2. Apocalypse Now - Now this is one of Hopper's best performances ever, he plays the fool in General Kurtz's mental kingdom, and its pretty wonderful to see him flex his Method muscles against the king of Method, Marlon Brando. His crazy character is a perfect example of what being in the jungles with Kurtz for too long. One of my favorite roles of his!

3. Easy Rider - One of the key films in my life, I watched this on the big screen at the Cinematheque once and it was just a transcendental experience for me. The first time i saw this I immediately recognized the dynamite power of the film, it had an aimless narrative, but it conveyed soo much about the heady times of 60's. The music, the ending, the script they all endure all these years later, and simply Hopper made a historical document of those times. This is definitely one of my favorites of all time. Thank you for that Mr Hopper!
4. True Romance - One of the most epic scenes between two excellent actors Dennis Hopper and Christopher Walken was in this Quentin Tarantino script. That fruity dialogue between the two which was largely improvised was just cinematic magic, to see to giants of American cinema cut loose and have some fun, it was just great!

Well there you have some of my favorite roles of Dennis Hopper, truly an icon in my books and one of the key figures in my cinematic odyssey! What are some of your favorite roles of his?

May 5, 2010

Khanna-o-Rama! Hera Pheri - Craazy Beginnings for the Vinotabh!

Can you resist a film where Vinod lampoons New Age yogis?

This won't be a review per se but more of a "Look what crazy batshit things are so wicked in this film" kinda of a rambling, like I usually do

I lie when i say this is the Vinotabh first outting, they came together in Zameer(1975) which i have but Vinod was just sassing up that boring horses-n-lost-children-masala film by being a long lost daku brother! Hera Pheri is the definitive masala pairing of the Vinotabh in its hot and hilarious way, it was directed by my favorite Vijay creator Prakash Mehra, who adds a shovel full of masala into this film. Its full of mistaken fathers, a memory lost mother, general madcappery, and letting the lead hotties establish a good goofy rapport that is lovely! Its a great film but its full of batshit things that cement its popularity with me such as:
Exhibit A = Mr Cyclops aka Tiger: This wonderful creation was pointed out in the Planet BollyBob, as a weird cyclops man who terroizes the neighbourhood and sometimes appears in Greek epics! Naaw this is Tiger, the scary bodyguard of the lead villain Pinchoo Kapoor, who is Vinod's dad and who also killed Amitabh's dad and made his maaw go nutty. Tiger's introduction was the most hilarious thing everr, as Pinchoo is making a plan to kill Amitabh who has insulted his son, so he coos "Tiger, Tiger" like a little dog would be beckoned. Instead Tiger turns out to be this creature, an Indian cyclops that Vinod beats up when he turns the table on his dad's dastardly plans! Tiger's creative makeup design was done by Oscar winning designers who tacked on perhaps a paper eye over the hapless actor, who growled as well to add some panache to his role!Exhibit B = Undercover Sadhuman aka Sheeram Lagoo: Yes this is one the most craziest wigs I've ever seen in my life! Sadhuman is actually the Police Commisioner of the area, who strides in the room when the Vinotabh are trying to wrangle out of being arrested for taking money thats not theirs. Sadhuman makes a spectacular entry as the other police man turns into a statue and salutes upright, and the Vinotabh chuckle as Sadhuman walks in the building! But I'd like to describe if i can the amazing wig that he sports, it seems to grow from the farthest side of his head and the beard too must have some scraps of food like Mr Twit from the Roald Dahl story or even Hritik's Jesus beard! Unfortunately the delightful design of Sadhuman's facial attire is whipped off when he turns into Police Commisioner! Ohh well atleast he keeps on the horridly big and bushy eyebrows to frown at the Vinotabh!

Exhibit C ="Waqt Ki Hera Pheri Hai" song: I'll let these images speak for the madcap menace of this wicked song! Naaw the Vinotabh now is generally yukking it up Marx Brothers style by playing dressup as two yogis that lecture the gang of baddies on their naughty ways, but they also do this to steal the loot, but what I loved about this part was how Vinod dressed up as a yogi and aping about, I don't know maybe I'm overdoing it but its a bit funny to see Vinod in a yogi getup and then see that a few years later he trots off with Rajneesh and the whole song is trying to lecture the baddies on their material ways and that ends off the only profound thought on this craazey film!
Loonying it up like Harpo and Chico!
Twisting the night away with Tuntun And generally doing the twist as dancing yogisDressed up now as Yogi Policemen!

Exhibit D = Saira's pointy Madonna bra: This is absolutely nothing unusual in the early 60's n 70's cinema where the heroines where the most hilarious bra's ever created! One that Madonna must have stolen from all the Mala's and Saira's of the heyday. I don't why I'm in a silly crazy mood on Khanna week, my mind just happens upon the silliest things in his films, alas I can blame on the Sweets I ate and am eating right now! But this bra must have been designed by Howard Hughes along with his Jane Russel bra, especially in this orange dress where the poor gal looks like she's aiming bazookas at her willing vixtim Amitabh! End of semi innapropriatness, NOT FOR LONG!

Exhibit E = The Slap of Friendship: This wicked moment happens when the Vinotabh split ways NAHIEE, you all scream, they are now known as Amitabh and Vinod! The best mates breakup when Vinod goes all gaga over his new daddy and rebuffs Amitabh. They meet at a bar where Amitabh nastily insults Vinod as a "kaminey, kuta, rascala!" Vinod unleashing his hurt gives the "Slap of DOOOOM!" Amitabh reacts badly to this smack and touches his cheek where his friend has attacked! The camera in a moment of emotional crisis cuts to Vinod who feels bad but not wrong!
Vinod gives "The Face of Anguish, and Regret"
Vinod gives the "I wanna turn back the time!" gesture
Its too late! Amitabh goes down his usual Sharaabi path!

Goga Kapoor is mildly disturbed by the Vinotabh's phonecall!
Exhibit F = Phonecall-Gate: There is a fabulous techno remix album called "Bombay 2:Electric Vindaloo," which has the most awesome cover art compiled from the mad films they've remixed and this includes Hera Pheri and its impressive array of shocked reactions from gangsters on the phone! I suggest you buy the album and enjoy PhonecallGate!

The pranksters getting up to mischief!
PhonecallGate gave this poor man a near heart attack! This man's wig was dislodged when answering the mysterious prank call!He wondered if he could get the money in time, before the Vinotabh's hotness rays killed him! Who were these gorgeous pranksters terroizing this gangster!

Prakash maybe that's taking Miss Mulvey's theory too far! NOt!
Exhibit G = CHUDDDIS! Yes you know I can't resist not putting a screenshot of Vinod or anyone in their chuddis or even being shirtless and revealing that trademark Khanna chest fuzz! I think Prakash Mehra was a director who read Laura Mulvey's essay on the Male Gaze and said "You know what there are women out there, that need to objectify the Vinotabh(mostly Vinod) I will rake in the paisa if the Gaze is directed at them" and so he did! There are many films where Vinod is objectified through shots of him fighting in tight white trousers and gratuitously necessary shots of his bum in Muqaddar Ka Sikandar or even Amitabh in any film there's a showcase of his supa fly wardrobe and cute closeups! But here are the CHUDDIS!
Vinod is quite the predecessor to my favorite muccha man Magnum PI!
Vinod in some actual Chuddis, in another chaotic Marx Bros esque scene where the Vinotabh are beaten up by many bad men and also get their clothes off in this rough n tumble dishoom bit!
Even Amitabh is pleased with Vinod's Magnum PI hot pants!
AWW wouldn't we all like to be woken up to a shirtless Khanna?

I end all my special exhibits and direct you all to some general miscellaneous crazy screencaps in this most mental and fun movie!

Some chandelier loving of course!
Amitabh prays to the mighty chandelier for some extra zaniness!
Thats Macmohan in the back spying on Vinod's lovestory! Sorry Mac not all super fly guys like you can get a gal!
I leave you all with this fitting picture! Everything is rright in the world when a picture like this can occur in a movie and satisfy my female gaze! Let me know your thoughts and definitely order this zany masala film!

May 3, 2010

Khanna-o-Rama! Qurbani: The Bromantic Bible of Pyar!

What a bombastic credit!Hot Stuff!
Warning: This review will be full of bromantic innuendo and full of bad taste, lewdness, but I can't help it if I'm a vulgar kid!I woke up late as usual, because being the summer holiday I roll out of bed anytime, but I thought I'd start Khanna Week with a bombastic bang! I discovered Qurbani in the bargain bin at the local dvdwallah's shop for 5 bucks, yes you may point your fingers and shake your head, because it truly is a shitty copy! Full of green specks, hair bits, some scenes go upwards on the screen alas it does justice to HOT PAPA KHANNA! I tend to go for the rugged masculine swaggering type such as Mr Khanna and his best mate Feroz and their king of swagger cousin Shatrugan! The movie is just a treasure trove of slick awesomeness(hate that word but its the right one for this film!).
Amjad and Feroz doing some flying into eachother dishoom dishoom!
Feroz Khan is a pretty excellent director in Apradh, Dharmatma, this, but the rest pales in comparison to something soo epic and bromantic as Qurbani! Feroz is a nice enough director to give Vinod the more sexier and thoughtful role which makes me melt into a puddle of droool~ This was made when Vinod returned from his spiritual quest with Rajneesh, and what a comeback it is!
So we start with a very earnest prologue of Feroz dedicating the whole film to the slain Rajiv Gandhi and his maae Indira, it was all very sweet of Feroz. But back to the storyline which opens with a bad Amrish Puri in a hilarious Afro curly wig who meets the spectacularly ugly dressed Aruna Irani who has the craziest eyes ever:
Well I guess thats how scarring Amrish's wig was!
She shouts that he looted her of course and her brother(Shakti Kapoor) is in prison for defending her honour, but there's more Amrish stole her diamonds which she and her duffer bro spend the whole film planning to get back. Then we are intoduced to the funkadelic meister Rajesh(Feroz Khan) who doesn't like seeing old men pushed around by Amrish, so he does some silly but manly device of wrecking Amrish's mercedes in an underground parkade! What a noble man! Rajesh then hops off to ogle at his girlfriend Sheila(Zeenat Aman) shaking her bum around and genrally dancing like a drunken uncle at her club and her crazy band that randomly strum about on their guitars and also give the audience an eyesore when they flash their thighs: Feroz is fond of flashy lights!The nasty cow that upsets the bromance Feroz just sexing the place up with his sheer ruggedness!
I'm sorry I call her a cow because she just wrecks the masala plotline and lectures on everybody all the time! Sheila soon finds out that Rajesh is a thief and he gets arrested and sent to jail by Inspector Khan(Amjad Khan) a very hilarious and fun role for Amjad to do as well! He really looks like he's having some fun with a non-villainous role!
Amjad lightening the mood throughout!
Sheila is all alone thankfully for 3 and a half years without Rajesh, and now girls the Man enters the scene as Amar, the kindly, studly, sexy father next door! Hailla I went when I was a fangirly 16 year old and still I squeal now, he is just the grandaddy of the smoulder! Amar is also a thief who works for Amrish thiefery company and renounces them when they shoot Macmohan, who gets a 2 minute role, but generally Macmohan only needs two minutes to look like a baddie and establish his presence with that two shaded hair! Anyway I digress, but one day I'll need to study Macmohan and other bit players that play gang members, ANYWAYY! Amar is upset that they killed Mac and Amrish can't afford for people to spill to the police.
AND now commences the innuendo that i spent the whole morning screencapping! Amrish is a nice boss that likes Amar for being "there he is, my star carrier" Perfectly normal Boss-employer relationship naa?
Amar rightly rebuffs this innapropriate kiss, and walks off into the sunset leaving behind his evil ways. But its not too evil really because he has a daughter so I deem Vinod a good man paying his bills anyway he can! Amar picks up his kid Tina, and on the way he runs into some motorcycling ruffians who squirt water him, and he follows them to a cafe where they are harassing Sheila! Amar falls in love with the gorgeous Sheila who doesn't pay attention to Vinod's burn-the-screen-desire, but she has to face it when he sings my favourite song ever "Hum Tumhe Chahte Hain"
How can she not surrender to that?
Or his general Byronic broodiness?
Or this tender ogling at her?
Clearly Sheila is a nutter for not giving into her desires to ruff up this studly man, nope she holds out for silly Rajesh who has made friends with Shakti in prison, who recruits Feroz for stealing back the diamonds! Inspector Khan expects Rajesh to turn up for his probation and to add to some more innuendo and vulgarity i give you this:Nuff said
If you have recovered from that screencap then we'll get back, to the commencement of the Bromance! I think I'll leave y'all with some innuendo and general love between two of the sexiest men in Bollywood
When Vinod Met Feroz!
Uhhff kya andaz hai! Feroz blood boils as he beholds this sight:But Feroz hadn't the courage to meet this dark and handsome stranger! As the Casablanca line goes "This is the start of a very wonderful friendship" How apt is that, and these two are quite a deal more studly than Claude Rains and Humphrey Bogart
The friendship starts with admiration, and Vinod is smitten with his new mate!
However such a love is dangerous, many forces such as Shakti Kapoor try to keep them apart, and he beats HOT PAPA KHANNA! Nahiieee! Feroz comes to the rescue
Feroz realizes his deep unwavering love for his buddy, and embraces the man who completes him!
Their passion grows, Feroz plays a dutiful nurse to his lover, he is careful not to let his keeper Zeenat discover his secret love. They bond over cigarretes
Vinod starts to fear that the cow might suspect, but Feroz assures him otherwiseThe two men rejoice on Eid while also hiding from Zeenat and Inspector Amjad
The two thieves now do their thieving together, another Qurbaan occurs as Feroz decides to repent. The parting is sweet, and they tug at eachothers hair! Inspector Amjad in a plot contrivance tells Feroz that Vinod has framed him! Feroz weeps at this betrayal after all that meaningful hugging! Nahieee
Dejected and hurt, Feroz runs from the handcuffs of the law and hunts for Vinod
Feroz tracks Amar down in London, and reataliates at his former lover!
Zeenat tries to intervene, but the beeyotch don't understand so Feroz hurls her across the room several times as Vinod and he fight out their anger! A handy phone call from friend Joe, clears Vinod's charges and the friends make up in the most spectacular fashion!

And they lived happily ever after for a while!
I hoped you enjoyed my first Khanna-o-Rama post for the week! Here's to bromance and Vinod being the pursuer in this filum! Next up Hera Pheri, the first pairing Vinotabh! Let me know some of your fave bromantic moments in this film. I leave you all with a sexy image of the stud of this week:
Yess I told you this would be dirty, and I know y'all wanna be his nurse too!