review

'Keh Doon Tumhe.': Shashi Kapoor and his all-round film career

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In time when Bollywood is a no longer only an Indian phenomenon, but engaging with Hollywood on its own terms and becoming a vibrant part of global cinema, his is a story that needs to be told. 

How Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw broke the glass ceiling with Biocon

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The book chronicles Biocon's 37-year long journey like a story. It narrates how, over a period of time, Shaw became a brand ambassador: "Not just of a flegling industry but of innovation-led business in general. By interacting with the funding and regulatory agencies and the political system, she gave a face to the industry."

A 'jingo imperialist' called Rudyard Kipling

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Despite the nearly seven years he spent in India, Kipling's love for and knowledge of the country was debatable. He had no Indian friends and he knew India through servants and courtiers looking for favours from the white man. His mind was closed to anything good in the East. He would distort or bend Indian words, a liberty he would not take with European languages like French.

A desperate mission to Karachi - and its strange objective

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Military thrillers have not been very frequent in India - at least in the time when this first came - but Nath, who earlier "sold ice-creams, peddled computer training courses, written ad copy and reported on business as a journalist," manages to perform very creditably in presenting its various nuances, while combining it with a substantial espionage/international intrigue component.

When Chittagong was 'liberated' from British

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Subodh Roy was born into an affluent family in Chittagong - his father was a successful lawyer - and had no interest in politics until a friend's brother convinced him that ending the British Raj was more important than building a career. So, at age 12, Roy became a volunteer at the conference of the Congress party when it was held in the port town (then East Bengal, now in Bangladesh) in 1928. This is where he first met Surya Sen, popularly known as 'Master Da,' the later mastermind of the armoury raid.

A way to do more in lesser time with lower stress?

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Allen's method only calls for focus accompanied with clarity and decisiveness in planning and executing, which largely needs common sense and simple logic - but in most situations of pressure and tension, people to even forget these basic human attributes.

A versatile Tamil writer profiles Gemini Studios

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"Fourteen Years with Boss" is a fascinating, at times funny, account of how Ashokamitran, who would emerge as a leading light in Tamil literature, found work at Gemini Studios when he was financially distressed.

An insightful guide to finding a life partner

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Completely from a man's point of view, Sahil Thaker's brutally honest penned-down experiences give an insight as to how and on what basis people do or should look for their better half.

Does every man get a wonderful wife?

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Barring an exception or two, all the men in this collection seem to be happily married and shower wholesome praise on their better half. The narrative spans three generations. The stories are varied, mostly drawn from the middle class, some more appealing than the others.

Planning mayhem in Mumbai: A new view of 26/11

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The real truth behind the planning and preparation of 26/11 may never be known, but the duo present a most plausible reconstruction of it, though admitting that "at the end of it all, we knew what had happened and in what sequence and like all events there were some things which we could prove and some things that we could not. This narrative is a combination of verifiable facts and a professional's estimate of what happened and how".

REVIEW

Books

'Keh Doon Tumhe.': Shashi Kapoor and his all-round film career

IANS Rating  

User Rating  


In time when Bollywood is a no longer only an Indian phenomenon, but engaging with Hollywood on its own terms and becoming a vibrant part of global cinema, his is a story that needs to be told. 

How Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw broke the glass ceiling with Biocon

IANS Rating  

User Rating  


The book chronicles Biocon's 37-year long journey like a story. It narrates how, over a period of time, Shaw became a brand ambassador: "Not just of a flegling industry but of innovation-led business in general. By interacting with the funding and regulatory agencies and the political system, she gave a face to the industry."

A 'jingo imperialist' called Rudyard Kipling

IANS Rating  

User Rating  


Despite the nearly seven years he spent in India, Kipling's love for and knowledge of the country was debatable. He had no Indian friends and he knew India through servants and courtiers looking for favours from the white man. His mind was closed to anything good in the East. He would distort or bend Indian words, a liberty he would not take with European languages like French.

A desperate mission to Karachi - and its strange objective

IANS Rating  

User Rating  


Military thrillers have not been very frequent in India - at least in the time when this first came - but Nath, who earlier "sold ice-creams, peddled computer training courses, written ad copy and reported on business as a journalist," manages to perform very creditably in presenting its various nuances, while combining it with a substantial espionage/international intrigue component.

When Chittagong was 'liberated' from British

IANS Rating  

User Rating  


Subodh Roy was born into an affluent family in Chittagong - his father was a successful lawyer - and had no interest in politics until a friend's brother convinced him that ending the British Raj was more important than building a career. So, at age 12, Roy became a volunteer at the conference of the Congress party when it was held in the port town (then East Bengal, now in Bangladesh) in 1928. This is where he first met Surya Sen, popularly known as 'Master Da,' the later mastermind of the armoury raid.

A way to do more in lesser time with lower stress?

IANS Rating  

User Rating  


Allen's method only calls for focus accompanied with clarity and decisiveness in planning and executing, which largely needs common sense and simple logic - but in most situations of pressure and tension, people to even forget these basic human attributes.

A versatile Tamil writer profiles Gemini Studios

IANS Rating  

User Rating  


"Fourteen Years with Boss" is a fascinating, at times funny, account of how Ashokamitran, who would emerge as a leading light in Tamil literature, found work at Gemini Studios when he was financially distressed.

An insightful guide to finding a life partner

IANS Rating  

User Rating  


Completely from a man's point of view, Sahil Thaker's brutally honest penned-down experiences give an insight as to how and on what basis people do or should look for their better half.

Does every man get a wonderful wife?

IANS Rating  

User Rating  


Barring an exception or two, all the men in this collection seem to be happily married and shower wholesome praise on their better half. The narrative spans three generations. The stories are varied, mostly drawn from the middle class, some more appealing than the others.

Planning mayhem in Mumbai: A new view of 26/11

IANS Rating  

User Rating  


The real truth behind the planning and preparation of 26/11 may never be known, but the duo present a most plausible reconstruction of it, though admitting that "at the end of it all, we knew what had happened and in what sequence and like all events there were some things which we could prove and some things that we could not. This narrative is a combination of verifiable facts and a professional's estimate of what happened and how".

Movies

'Sarbjit' is a gem

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The film has tremendous visual velocity. Whether it’s Randeep’s Sarabjit locked up in a cell large enough to house a rat, or shots of Dalbir strolling forlornly amidst a bloom of yellow flowers, cinematographer Kiran Deohans captures the innermost sanctity of hearts torn asunder by political violence.

'Buddha in a Traffic Jam': Good intention, bad execution

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Correlating socialism and corruption, the film speaks about why socialism has no future and stimulates the audience for a revolution to change the world. But who will bell the cat?

'Pencil': A thriller that hardly thrills

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"Pencil" could have been an excellent edge-of-the-seat campus thriller, provided the makers didn't try and commercialise it for the masses. Had they stuck to the template (sans a romantic track) that was followed in the original, this could've been a path-breaking film.

'Criminal': Complex, but has strong performances

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The film is Kevin Costner's canvas and he leaves an indelible mark as Jericho, the criminal. He exhibits a fairly authentic portrayal of a heartless criminal, who over a period of time, turns sensitive.

'Captain America: Civil War': A purposeless fantasy

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Picking up threads from Marvel's earlier films, this one weaves a plot that makes it tedious to view, as a lot of what matters in Civil War isn't actually in the film at all. It takes a while for the narrative to sink in. And, unlike in a conventional script, this one does not give enough time or space for each character to settle into the narration.

'Santa Banta Pvt Ltd' - A dud company

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With a convoluted plot that is neither exciting nor convincing, the narration trudges along an idiotic route that crosses paths with Shankar’s wife Kareena Roy (Neha Dhupia) and Shankar’s best friend Sonu Sultan (Ram Kapoor), along with Fiji’s RAW agents Cutie (Lisa Haydon) and Akbar Illahabaadi (Sanjay Mishra). They are also chased by Nepal No. One Don (Johnny Lever), who is in Fiji and has his own inexplicable axe to grind with them.

'Before I Wake': Unhurriedly slow scare tease

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Jacob Tremblay, who had earlier this year delivered a wonderful, heart rending performance in the Oscar-nominated film Room, once again, as Cody is charming. He gives an exceptionally realistic depiction of a timid, guilt-ridden and defensive child, all at the same time.

'Fan': Shah Rukh Khan's best in years

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From the sunny to the sinister, Shah Rukh’s Gaurav Chanana takes us on a roller-coaster ride across a plot which is propelled by pungency. The superstar gets some valuable support from co-actors like Sayani Gupta, Deepika Amin and Yogendra Tikoo whose presence is skillfully woven into the darkly disarming drama of a duel between the dapper star and his distressed disingenuous doppelganger.

'Ki & Ka': Refreshingly fun, endearing

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Writer-director R. Balki's characters are perfectly chiselled with the right amount of emotional overtures, making them convincing and relatable. The plot, set in a hassle-free society, is taut, formulaic and evenly paced with no overtly major dramatic twists. It does not navigate through a cliched path, which is what makes the film questionable, yet refreshingly acceptable.

'Rocky Handsome': Convincing action, low on emotions

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Packed with maniac action sequences, "Rocky Handsome" is a typical dark, moody and coarsely crafted crime drama that is based on the 2010 released Korean film "Man from Nowhere".

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