Archive for December 4th, 2009


Mainland China


Music Review: Dasvidaniya

Modern Bollywood music has scared me with the direction it has taken in recent times, what with high-profile teams delivering mediocre musical scores. I generally approach new Hindi film music warily, but never losing hope of finding something that totally floors me.

Dasvidaniya – the word means ‘goodbye’ in Russian. The audio CD has five tracks on it, three songs, a remix and an instrumental version of one of the songs.

The first song Muskura starts with Sonu Nigam gently crooning, accompanied by the accordion, an instrument I haven’t heard since the glorious days of Raj Kapoor-Shankar-Jaikishan! This song has such an old-school feel to it, it is impossible to not like it! An accordion solo comes in before Sonu’s melodious voice takes over again. It’s definitely been awhile since Bollywood music has had such nice lyrics.

One thing I need to make very clear – I was not a fan of Kailash Kher’s vocals before I heard this…but they go so well with the music of Alvida (that’s Hindi for ‘goodbye’)! There is a short guitar solo in the song, and the chorus is very soothing. What I really like here is Kher knows exactly when to end the song, instead of letting it drag just because he knows he has come up with something nice.

Mumma! Yes, that’s the name of the third song and what can I say about a song that is titled Mumma and has the best Hindi lyrics written in a very, very long time. An acoustic guitar fornicates with laidback percussion, and the lyrics, I cannot get over them! This evening I will run home to my mother and give her the biggest hug of my life. This guy whose voice I don’t care much about is making me miss my mom and cry with a song I have heard only twice in my life. Do I need to say anything else?

Alvida Remix is very peppy, and it is short – something every other music director can learn from Kailash Kher. No Tu saala or any such nonsense here! I wish they’d included a lyrics booklet, for even though it is easy to understand the words, it’d be wonderful to read them while listening to the music.

Muskura‘s instrumental version comes on, this time with the accordion and clean electric guitar notes mingling playfully. This is a sheer delight.

Kailash Kher, Naresh and Paresh – pay heed to what I say and next time don’t tease us by giving us only five tracks, when you could easily throw eight or 10 and we’d lap it up. And I demand to know why the background score has not been included on this baby.

Such soothing music, such great lyrics… these ears haven’t heard such greatness in a very long time. Bollywood music lovers, it’s time to say Dasvidaniya (Alvida will also do) to lesser mortals who attempt to impress us with pretentious crap in the name of music. Can we have another one please, Mr Kher?


[Previously published on Buzz18]


Movie Review: The International

Inspired by a banking scandal, The International is supposed to be an action-thriller. It turns out to be neither – there is only one action sequence, which happens to be the only thrill the movie offers. Coming from the director of Run Lola Run, The International is a total disappointment. Heck, it’d be a disappointment even if it was made by someone else, but this is worse because Tom Tykwer being at the helm of matters can get anyone excited.

Louis Salinger (Clive Owen) is an Interpol agent who knows the International Bank Of Business And Credit (IBBC) is up to some shady stuff. With the help of the goodlooking Eleanor Whitman (Naomi Watts), he decides to take on the IBBC. The story is interesting, but that’s about it. At the beginning of the film, Salinger’s partner Thomas Schumer is sitting in a car with another man, one Andre Clement. They’re talking about a major nuclear purchase the IBBC is going to make for a deal with China.Thomas gets out of the car and is about to cross the street where Salinger is waiting. Suddenly, Thomas vomits and falls to the ground and dies.

Salinger knows Thomas has not died of a heart attack but has been assasinated, and we find out a little later Clement also has died under mysterious circumstances. This is also when you can let your excitement die, because the rest of the movie is a total brain-strain that will put you to sleep.

Turns out Salinger had attempted something similar earlier but his plan had flopped, just like this movie is going to. There is a man called Calvini, who is the head of a weapons defense organisation. Calvini had refused to do business with the IBBC, and as a result, gets shot in the head while giving a speech. When people in the movie die, you feel happy for them as they are set free and are not stuck in the theatre like you.

The rest of The International is packed with incredibly dull moments that think they’re exciting. The dialogue tries really hard to be profound and there are at least half a dozen times you’ll say, ‘Yeah, right!’. There are so many people walking in an out of scenes in The International that you won’t know who’s doing what. Everyone tries to look intense and like they mean business but you simply don’t care – the story doesn’t engage you at all.

The performances are hardly worth a mention – there is zero chemistry between Owen and Watts. At some point, Naomi Watts asks, ‘What was that?’. My question exactly.

The only time you feel entertained is during the neat action sequence. Shot in a famous museum in New York, there are plenty of bullets flying around, and the bang-bang comes as a relief.

There are two funny scenes in The International – one is when cops frighten a paranoid doctor by telling him one of his patients is a psychopathic serial killer. The other funny scene – you will let out a tired laugh at how the movie ends… and it’s not even meant to be funny.


The International is highly recommended for insomniacs, so take a pillow along if you’re actually going for this boring thriller.


[From my Buzz18 reviews]

Movie Review: Blue

Member of The Internet Defense League

Follow Mehta Kya Kehta? on

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Blog Stats

  • 1,203,257 hits
December 2009
« Nov   Jan »

%d bloggers like this: