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Friday, February 26, 2021

Shalini Langer


Let’s not be crybabies: the eyes have it
Sun, Feb 14, 2021

Whatever that moment in Parliament might or might not have meant, for a few very long minutes, a nation and its MPs stood still, as PM Modi struggled through several muffled sobs and breaks for sips of water, before a drop seeped out.

Monster Hunter review: A mindless video game adaptation
Fri, Feb 05, 2021

Milla Jovovich and Tony Jaa are dragged through some superhuman challenges, lot of physical harm, and monsters that keep coming and coming. However, it is ultimately Anderson's mumbo jumbo effort to clothe this ordeal in "reality" that does the film in.

Misbehaviour review: About impossible dreams and improbable leaps of faith
Fri, Jan 22, 2021

Post-MeToo, Misbehaviour seems a dash too polite, and a little too hesitant, in asking to change the world.

The Secret Garden review: A messy adaptation
Fri, Jan 08, 2021

Marc Munden's The Secret Garden takes an inordinately long and circuitous route to the point of the story, with the secret garden and its significance not likely to be clear to people who haven't read the book.

The baaghis of Bharat & their love stories
Sun, Jan 03, 2021

If governments have to step in as monitors of love, and be forced to continuously amend their laws so as to “tighten” them, always couched under other names, how resilient love is.

Wonder Woman 1984 review: A lacklustre sequel
Thu, Dec 24, 2020

When Gal Gadot swings, swishes, slides and sashays into a fight, and slings the bad guys with her lasso, she remains a delight to watch. However, the story takes too long to get around to fights worth fighting for, wasting its first punches and precious screen time on two-penny, amateur robbers.

The Midnight Sky review: George Clooney directorial misses the mark
Wed, Dec 23, 2020

The Midnight Sky drifts along almost meaninglessly, between space and Earth, not able to decide what it wants to be except an elegy to heroism.

Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom review: Viola Davis-starrer hits all the right notes
Fri, Dec 18, 2020

Chadwick Boseman is as eloquent in this role of the thin upstart as he was in the latent power of his Black Panther -- both characters unable to shake off their pasts. Levee's ambition makes you feel for him, and be as scared for him.

The Prom movie review: A headache-inducing musical
Sat, Dec 12, 2020

The Prom movie review: You can be pardoned for expecting more than this headache-inducing, blinge-blinding, tone-deaf musical where all that glitter adds that up to so little zazz (yes, not jazz)

A Call to Spy movie review: Radhika Apte-starrer is un-showy and un-bombastic
Sat, Dec 12, 2020

Director Lydia Dean Pilcher uses Radhika Apte well in the role of Noor Inayat Khan, not overplaying or undermining her Eastern ancestry, placing the talented actor shoulder-to-shoulder among her contemporaries.

Mank movie review: David Fincher film revels in the grey
Sat, Dec 05, 2020

Mank movie review: Mank captures the life of Herman Mankiewicz between essentially 1933 and 1940, when America was in the midst of the Depression and watching uneasily, but from far, the gathering clouds of World War II.

Tenet review: Christopher Nolan’s film is underwhelming and confusing
Sat, Dec 05, 2020

The most impressive Tenet gets is people simultaneously walking in opposite directions, and cars seemingly in reverse in our timelines, which makes for one helluva ride but not even a great car chase on screen.

We may already be living ‘with’ the virus, like we live with those other risks
Sun, Nov 08, 2020

Do we have an answer for the voter who told this paper in Bihar that he can’t understand why he was paying the price for the lockdown... “I don’t know of anyone who has died of corona.”

Give me Rhea’s fortitude any day
Sun, Sep 13, 2020

What the world still wants is a sacrificial Sita, not the demanding Draupadi, who called out her husband’s cowardice and avarice in subjecting her to a public stripping.

Explained: How the Oscar Awards are going to be different once again, and why
Tue, Jun 16, 2020

The Academy is aiming to develop new “representation and inclusion standards” for awards, with a task force to come out with these by July 31.

May 19-June 7, Delhi: A Covid diary
Sun, Jun 14, 2020

As the Centre and Supreme Court raise alarm over the Capital, where numbers are surging and hospital facilities falling short, Shalini Langer on her family’s story — from a testing centre to an ICU, sanitisation to house inspection, officials to RWA, and infection to recovery.

Why Rahul Gandhi’s interview with Raghuram Rajan was the unkindest cut
Sun, May 17, 2020

As those two good-looking, rich-looking, well-meaning men worried politely about lesser mortals, one couldn’t take one’s eyes off that young-again, old-again; president-again, not-president again; stubble again, no-stubble again, leader of the Congress.

What will we even tell our children? How long before they can take the Metro or hug a friend
Sun, May 03, 2020

Social distancing now has medical legitimacy.

Onward movie review: A decent watch
Sat, Mar 07, 2020

Onward often seems confused about that line between magic that seeks to impress, and magic that just is. It is also too much about a lot of things.

The Invisible Man movie review: Elisabeth Moss shines in this adaptation
Fri, Feb 28, 2020

The Invisible Man movie review: Elisabeth Moss, she of the vulnerable face and the moist eyes, is shouldering her first solo-lead here. And she does a commendable job with what she gets, which is mostly staring at seemingly empty corners and lurking around quiet houses.

Shubh Mangal Zyada Saavdhan review: The chase of love
Sat, Feb 22, 2020

Shubh Mangal Zyada Saavdhan review: Shubh Mangal Zyada Saavdhan's achievement lies not just in going where Bollywood has not gone before. It is in consistently portraying Kartik (Ayushmann Khurrana) and Aman (a superb Jitendra Kumar in his debut film role) as just a couple, not 'homo' or 'hetero'.

Bhoot review: Vicky Kaushal is the saving grace of this horror film
Sat, Feb 22, 2020

Bhoot review: Bhumi Pednekar and Ashutosh Rana are there to add brief acting heft, and to do some mantra-reciting ghost-fighting. A large part, however, is left to the able and much-taxed shoulders of Vicky Kaushal.

Now that the drum beats of Delhi election battle have died, how long will our interest in Shaheen Bagh last
Sun, Feb 16, 2020

When they come to “clear the road”, what will they do with the India map made of scrap and beautified with lights in what can only be a labour of love? What happens to that man playing songs of protest? What happens to those songs even?

Fantasy Island movie review: This Blumhouse film is a mess
Fri, Feb 14, 2020

Fantasy Island movie review: The whole premise of Fantasy Island is what would happen if people got second chances. The only good ending would be if the film didn't get one.

Little Women review: A near-perfect adaptation
Sat, Feb 08, 2020

Little Women movie review: Writer-director Greta Gerwig gets right to the heart of it, capturing the small, everyday rebellions of the story set in the 1860s, and making it as current as it was 150 years ago.