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Film Critics: Today, December 11, winners from New YorkFCOnline, San FranciscoFCC, New MexicoFC, AtlantaFCC, PhiladelphiaFCC, TorontoFCA, BostonSFC. Nominations from St. LouisFCA and ChicagoFCA.

Sunday, March 06, 2011

गुज़ारिश Guzaarish (Request)


What a beautiful movie, extremely beautiful, like a big succession of riveting paintings some with the most incandescent light and others playing with darkness. It’s a true pleasure for your eyes that slowly will be transferred to all your senses as when another indoor or outdoor portrait comes followed by another and another your heart will shrink and you wonder how someone can create such beautiful compositions and images, especially when story is dealing with a very delicate subject matter: euthanasia.

Yes I watch Bollywood movies because one reason: Aishwarya Rai and in my quest to watch everything with her I have seen many of her movies that truly amaze me with a few that I really didn’t enjoyed much; but never imagined that I was going to watch a movie like this one, I was not prepared at all and totally got me by surprise. You have no idea how beautiful to watch this movie is and on top it made me laugh, it made cry and it made me feel almost everything in this passionate romance between a quadriplegic magician Ethan Mascarenhas (Hrithik Roshan) and his nurse Sofia D’Souza (Aishwarya Rai).

It’s no surprise for me to find that film didn’t do well at the India box office as this absolutely is not your usual Bollywood movie, as a matter of fact is very unusual for Mumbai standards as even when has the usual elements the dancing, the singing, the crying, and the drama is packed in a way that literally resembles art cinema, like going to a moving art gallery with outstanding paintings.

With the difficult subject matter that’s the essence of the story surely was difficult to find a credible ending to the story and no is not a happy ending but filmmakers made it into a life celebration ending which in my opinion was not really successful especially when cinematography, photography, compositions started to look different to what we have seen for most of the film and started to look more like regular Bollywood style. But the good news is that all these happens in the last 15 minutes (or so) of the fim.

Story is set in Goa and we are able to watch the landscape plus so many story touches that recall the region influence by the Portuguese. To my eyes when Aish dances she doesn’t dances to a Spanish dance mix, she dances to a very good mix of Hindi and Portuguese choreography and music. For me was the most dramatic and beautiful moment in the film, like the climax as not only Aish looks divine but her costume, the set, the music, the choreography, the complete composition took my breath away. Exquisite.

Still Hrithik dances and magic tricks are a true visual and magic delight with outstanding scenarios but most amazing is that with a good director and excellent camera work both Aish and Hrithik show that they can truly act as both give extraordinary performances. I was absolutely taken aback with the visuals, but I also followed the story, well not followed, I got into the story and was only at the end when they lost me and I became an observer.

Have to talk about costumes that are not the traditional saris, Aish wears some costumes that are impressive as look like a mix of Hindi and European styles but the use of color in some of them are especially dramatic, like the mostly black dress with a fluorescent red head scarf! Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful.

I could go on and on talking, writing about this amazing movie that caught me by total surprise and as you can imagine by now I strongly recommend it to everyone that enjoy to watch riveting paintings in the screen. This is the kind of movie that western audiences surely could enjoy more than natural Bollywood circuit audiences, but you have to like the word art in your cinema and have to appreciate the particular acting style from Bollywood plus its melodramatic stories.

I really loved this movie and now I’m curious to explore more of the work by director Sanjay Leela Bhansali and his cinematographer Sudeep Chatterjee as if their films are similar to this one, then they will become must be seen for me.

If you are near to this movie I strongly suggest you don’t miss the opportunity to watch it.

BIG ENJOY!!!

Watch trailer @MOC

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