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URI: THE SURGICAL STRIKE & MANIKARNIKA: QUEEN OF JHANSI (HINDI: ENGLISH SUBTITLES)

Bollywood reveres and perpetually energizes its myths, gods, heroes and heroines, ancient and contemporary; their films pulsate, stun and elucidate audiences, Eastern and Western. The Ramayan and Mahabharata through centuries of repetition, still hypnotically enchant viewers; the movie versions keep the stories, myths, warring factions vibrantly alive. An epic film featuring¬† “Asoka, The Great”, ruler of India’s subcontinent (268-232 BCE) ... Read More »

SIMMBA (HINDI: ENGLISH SUBTITLES)

Rape. On December 12th, 2012, a 23-year-old physiotherapy student was gang raped by six men and later died of her injuries. In the same year approximately 25,000 rapes occurred, most offenders, known by their victims; there is a lethal disparity between those charged and convicted.¬† “Simmba”, directed by Rohit Shetty is a valiant slap at the nefarious perpetrators, prosecutors, and ... Read More »

K.G.F: CHAPTER 1 (HINDI: ENGLISH SUBTITLES)

Choosing between two Bollywood blockbusters: “Zero”, Shah Rukh Khan playing a mini-version of himself or “K.G.F: Chapter 1”, my vote for the latter resulted in over 2 1/2 hours of bombastic, cacophonous, tumultuous entertainment. Writer/director Prashanth Neel’s tale of oppression commences in the early 1980’s; cutting to the chase with a limited script, “Rocky” champions the oppressed, inciting their rebellion ... Read More »

THUGS OF HINDOSTAN

Bollywood Goliath, Aamir Khan, stars in this 3-hour, monolithic saga, revolving around English/Indian travails in the late eighteenth, early nineteenth centuries; costing 200 crores (topping 2 billion dollars) the film is a total dud, and the worst movie Khan has ever made; his character “Firangi” weakly reminiscent of Johnny Depp’s in “Pirates of the Caribbean” is a conniving, duplicitous buffoon; ... Read More »

PENEFLIX IS ON A TWO WEEK SABBATICAL

For over eleven years and 1000 plus reviews, my sporadic filmic intermissions rejuvenate, not only my spirit, but how I view films; the escapism of movies, relief from reality, a hiatus from daily duties, is healthy, but has to be balanced with the flavor of things as they actually exist; blinders off, focusing on globalization and its effects on the ... Read More »

GOLD (HINDI: ENGLISH SUBTITLES)

Bollywood gifts celestial status to India’s sport triumphs: “Chak De India”, women’s hockey; “Lagaan”, cricket, “Iqbal”, cricket; “Bhagg Milkha Bhagg”, running; director Reema Kagti’s “Gold” effortlessly, smoothly claims its fate with the icons; more than an historical regaling of India’s Olympic exultations in field hockey, under British rule, the film invigoratingly, pungently follows its birth on the world’s stage as ... Read More »

FANNEY KHAN (HINDI: ENGLISH SUBTITLES)

Bollywood’s version of Lee Daniels’, 2009 “Precious”; a galvanizing lesson to never judge “a book by its cover”; director Atul Manjrekar’s “Fanney Khan” incorporates much of the traditional Bollywood aesthetic: torrents of tears, scintillating songs, dramatic dance sequences, but it is the performance of Pihu Sand, “Lata Sharma” (similar to Gabourey Sidibe, in “Precious”) that stupendously soars with irresistible, incredible,¬† ... Read More »

BEST FILMS OF 2018 TO DATE:

So many of you have requested this filmic information. They are listed as I have seen them. For reviews check Peneflix archives, everyone’s taste is infused with different flavors; READ reviews before viewing; consider yourself forewarned. I love the twisted, foreign, horror genres along with soapy, platitudinous, sentimental, saccharine fare. BLACK PANTHER OPERATION RED SEA (CHINESE) LOVE, SIMON FOXTROT (ISRAEL) ... Read More »

SANJU (HINDI: ENGLISH SUBTITLES)

Director Rajkumar Hirani (“PK”, “3 Idiots”, “Monna Bhai M.B.B.S.”) creates a viscerally stunning film based on the legendary Bollywood “bad boy”, Sanjay Dutt (1959-) son of iconic parents , Sunil Dutt (1928-2003) and Nargis (1929-1981) a love partnership commencing with the filming of “Mother India” (1957); multi-proficient, Sunil, acted, directed, played a dominant role in politics; Sanjay felt emotionally dwarfed ... Read More »

VEERE DI WEDDING (HINDI: ENGLISH SUBTITLES)

Bollywood is massively productive in releasing, at a minimum, a thousand films a year; the vast majority with a predictable happy ending; an escape from the banes of tedium and angst. But the tragic conclusions, forever resonate in the consciousness of those who experienced them: “Devdas”, “Anand”, “Rang De Basanti, “Kal Ho Naa Ho”, are a few classics. It is ... Read More »

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