Review: Lara Croft Tomb Raider – The Cradle of Life


Lara Croft Tomb Raider – The Cradle of Life was one movie I always wanted to watch, ever since its release in 2003. Today, I finally got to watch it on the ZStudio channel. And boy, oh, boy, I think I was lucky that I never watched it till now.

I won’t bother boring you with the plot as it is extremely predictable – Babe archaeologist Lara gets it into her head that she can save the worked from doom by locating the Pandora’s Box, which is supposedly hidden in a site code-named ‘The Cradle of Life’. As usual, there is the evil billionaire who wants to unleash it on the world and of course, there is Lara’s love-interest (albeit, ‘ex’) hanging around saving Lara from dastardly plots of the evil billionaire.

The action sequences are quite interesting – there is one with the Chinese terracotta warriors and the hired Chinese goon who is trying to kill Lara, which I thought was pretty good. I wonder what it is with movie-makers; the moment the words ‘archaeologist’ and ‘Chinese’ are mentioned in the same breath, all of a sudden the Chinese terracotta warriors appear out of thin air! Is that the only archeological artifact that the Chinese have to boast about?

Anyway, what really irritated me was the complete disregard towards any kind of technological impossibilities exhibited by the movie. For instance, all the mad dash around China was simply to secure a golden Orb and decode it. However, when Lara asks her assistant to decode the key and send across the sounds (they discovered that the key was actually sound) she couldn’t understand it. But then she asks him to send across the file. The next sequence simply shows her viewing a holographic projection emanating from the Orb. But I am still clueless how sending a file to her suddenly produced the holography. Magic maybe. Or probably through  telepathic projections from Lara to the Orb. Because the Orb was simply sitting in front of her phone and not connected to a single thing except the wooden table beneath it.

Towards the end of the movie, Lara’s love interest pops down into the hole into which she and the evil billionaire had disappeared a few moments ago. Only to be killed by Lara after professing his love for her. Another thing, she just goes around the place killing all and sundry who happens to bug her. I can understand James Bond doing the same thing as he is ‘Licensed to Kill’; since when was a mere archeologist elevated to the same stature?

All that the movie has to offer are some good fight and flight sequences (I loved the way Lara and her love flew around Hong kong like bats); as well as Lara trying her best to keep up a wooden face throughout the movie. I suppose she thought that made her look tough and gave her that “do-not-mess-with-me” attitude. To me it looked like she was trying to keep from laughing out loud at the stupidities in the movie.

I am glad I never had a chance to see this movie till date. And I regret having seen it today.

Cast:

Lara – Angelina Jolie

Lara’s love interest – Gerard Butler

Evil Billionaire – Ciarán Hinds

Director – Jan de Bont

[Image courtesy: movies-wallpaper.net, themoviedb.org]
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The Book and The Movie – Eat Pray Love, PS I Love You


P.S. I Love YouRecently, I had a chance to watch 2 moviesP.S. I Love You and the well-acclaimed Eat, Pray, Love.

Around 2 weeks later, I also got my hands on the original books – P.S. I Love You by Cecilia Ahern and Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert. Actually I am still reading Eat, Pray, Love (Liz has just reached Rome now).

To put it in a nutshell, I hated the book version of P.S. I Love You and hated the movie version of Eat, Pray, Love. Continue reading

What is “Inception”?


in·cep·tion (n-spshn)
n.
The beginning of something, such as an undertaking; a commencement.
[Middle English incepcion, from Latin incepti, inceptin-, from inceptus, past participle of incipere, to begin, take up : in-, in; see in-2 + capere, to take; see kap- in Indo-European roots.]




This was the title of a movie I watched recently. To be honest, we had no clue what we were going to see, except for the trailers showing Cobb (Leonardo di Caprio) and something about dreams. We got in around 5 minutes into the movie, by which time they were showing a city being mobbed by a horde of angry people. We could also see Leo, a Japanese guy and someone else in the picture. Needless to say, we were completely baffled about what was happening.


Then the real story began to evolve. ‘Inception’ was supposed to be a device which would permit one to share dreams with all connected to it. And (believe it or not) one hour in dreamland was supposed to be equivalent to 5 minutes in the real world. Hmmm…..all this seemed above-board and perfectly sensible. Now begins the fantasy part – in this movie, Leo was a man accused of murder, and that of his wife. Therefore, he was a fugitive from the law and trying to earn his living in other countries using Inception. His speciality was espionage.



The Japanese guy was the head of an energy corporation, and had a proposition to Cobb – that to influence the heir of another energy corporation  that was on the brink of being a monopoly in the energy business. His proposal was a simple one – influence the heir to break up his father’s energy empire, and Leo would finally be absolved of all charges and could return to the States to his kids.


Cobb decides to take up the challenge – and a challenge it was, since Inception was based on architecting the dream worlds and this particular mission required three layers of dreams – a dream within a dream within a dream. Kind of like a nested ‘if ….else if’ statement in computer parlance. This was a previously unattempted feat and any miscalculation could lead to the dreamers being killed.


Well, the rest of Inception shows the viewer how the dreams are constructed, one within the other, the dangers they encounter and the fears that pursue Cobb. It is a pretty interesting movie for those inclined towards science fiction and fantasy. It also makes up for great action sequences.


All the actors do justice to their roles, and my especial favourite was Joseph Grober-Levitt, the guy who plays   the role of Cobb’s most trusted friend, Arthur.



All in all, I would give this movie a 3 out of 5.





Director: Christopher Nolan
Starring : Leonardo di Caprio, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Ellen Page

Movie Review – Fashion



FASHION


Director : 
Madhur Bhandarkar
Writers : 
Niranjan Iyengar (dialogue)
Ajay Monga (story)
Release:
29 October 2008 (India)


A movie with a marked difference compared to the usual rolled out of Bollywood – this is a heroine-centric movie, with the male actors having a significant role, but not large enough to be called ‘the Hero’.


Fashion is a very well-made movie, giving the viewers a glimpse into the life of models and the fashion industry. The protagonist of the movie is Meghna Mathur (played by Priyanka Chopra – former Miss World) who plays the role of a girl from a small-time town in Chandigarh, coming to Mumbai with aspirations to become a model (neeedless to say, against the wishes of her parents).

The first half deals with the trials Meghna has to undergo in the fashion industry, and her rise from being a nobody to the top model in the industry. However, she becomes the reigning queen by replacing Shonali Gujral (played by Kangana Ranaut) who was the showstopper on all fashion shows as well as the covergirl of Panache, the fashion magazine.

The second half sees the fall of Meghna Mathur and her subsequent attempts to rehash her image and make a comeback.          

 

I must say that Kangana Ranaut steals the show in her portrayal of Shonali – her style on the ramp and her flair in catwalk – leaves the viewers spellbound. In comparison, Priyanka scores very poorly and can never hope to make the kind of impact that Kangana has in the movie. 

Most of the quirks of the fashion world has been portrayed in the movie, from subtle hints about gay designers to wardrobe malfunctions that have maligned the industry several times. 

The male actors who have significant roles in the movie are – Arbaaz Khan (as Abhijit Sarin the owner of Panache magazine), Ashwin Mushran (as a lovable would-be designer Rohit Khanna) and Samir Soni (as Rahul Arora – a top designer ). All of them excel in their roles and are a very welcome addition to the cast.


Mughda Godse plays the part of a model who befriends Meghna during her underdog days, and then is treated badly once Meghna is at the top.

The movie ends on a happy note where Meghna manages to get the support of her family, and once again become a super model.