Darker and drearier, ‘Mowgli: Legend of the Jungle’ lacks its bare necessities

Mowgli: Legend of the Jungle, the latest live-action cinematic take on Rudyard Kipling’s story of a boy raised by wolves is a peculiar beast. It’s the old familiar tale but with a dark, gory spin. Mowgli (Rohan Chand), an orphaned infant, grows up in an Indian jungle after being rescued by the panther Bagheera (Christian Bale) and adopted by a family of wolves. The pack offers him protection from Sher Khan (Benedict Cumberbatch), a fierce tiger who killed the child’s parents and now wants to devour the man cub as well. The young boy is mentored by the bear Baloo (Andy ...

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Despite its talented cast and progressive story, Pinky Memsaab could not shatter the glass ceiling

Whether it’s Hollywood, Bollywood or Lollywood, film industries around the globe are investing in women-centric stories. The progressive voices are much louder than ever and are effectively paving the path for change. Women filmmakers are now more often seen in the limelight and movies with multi-dimensional women protagonists are encouraged. One of the main and common concepts behind such audacious characters is self-discovery by killing stereotypes. For instance movies like Wild (2014), Zubeidaa (2001), English Vinglish (2012), The Devil Wears Prada (20016), Queen (2014) and Lipstick Under My Burkha (2016) highlighted a sense of self-worth and depicted female power. Dubai-based indie ...

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In terms of script and execution, Mirzapur is far better than Sacred Games

Web series are a game changer for filmmakers and storytellers alike. After the popularity of Sacred Games on Netflix and Inside Edge by Amazon Prime, the latter is back with yet another web series called Mirzapur. The plot revolves around Akhanda Tripathi, also known as Kaleen Bhaiyya, because he deals with the buying and selling of rugs and carpets. Akhanda is a don who rules Mirzapur, quite literally. Interestingly though, his only son Munna Tripathi is entirely out of his control and constantly misuses his power and position, constantly landing himself in some sort of trouble or the other. One ...

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With suspenseful politics and powerful acting, Bodyguard is television at its finest

Netflix from time to time cancels its low-rated shows, but the streaming giant is also constantly working to ensure that it provides its subscribers the best content available in the world. Hence, Netflix sometimes imports TV shows from across the borders to make rich content available for its customers. One of their recent imports was Bodyguard, a show produced by BBC and aired on BBC One. Netflix was quick to strike a deal for this offering as it became the most watched show on BBC since 2008. Bodyguard revolves around David Budd, played by Richard Madden (Game of Thrones), a war ...

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Instead of scaring you to death, The Possession of Hannah Grace will bore you to death

Unlike most horror sub-genres that have found reasons to exist primarily because of their commercial success, the exorcism/demonic possession genre pretty much began and ended with William Friedkin’s 1973 horror classic The Exorcist. Sure, a number of ‘possession’ movies have been made since then but none of them have been any good and most of them have not performed particularly well at the box office. This, however, did not stop the filmmakers behind The Possession of Hannah Grace from attempting to bring new life to a genre that till now has been largely lifeless. The film centres on a former cop, Megan Reed (Shay ...

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Narcos: Mexico is high on everything we expected and then some

As soon as I was done with the third season of Narcos, I knew the fourth season was already on the cards. I also knew that the new season would offer something new as the Colombian chapter of the show had come to an end with the third season. It was in December 2017 that the new cast members were announced. When I got to know Michael Pena (End of Watch, Fury) and Diego Luna (Rogue One: A Star Wars Story) were going to lead the cast, I was very excited to say the least. Soon it was also announced by ...

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Ralph broke the Internet and with it our expectations

Six years after charming us with the thoroughly entertaining Wreck-It Ralph, Disney revisits the world of the much loved 2012 tale in Ralph Breaks the Internet, a cute but uneven adventure that reunites us with familiar characters from Disney’s many franchises. Instead of sticking with the original setting of arcade video games, the action has now moved to the Internet. After their attempt to have a new adventure within Sugar Rush goes awry and leaves the game unplugged, Wreck-It Ralph (John C Reilly) and Vanellope (Sarah Silverman) have to go off into the Internet via the arcade’s newly installed WiFi router ...

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Robin Hood is dull, incoherent and fails miserably on every level

The Robin Hood story needs no introduction, having already been immortalised by British folklore and novels alike. However, on the big screen, the story of the arrow wielding outlaw has not been as successful. Barring the 1973 animated take which, at least for me, stands out as a nostalgic childhood classic, there have been numerous commercial and critical flops: be it the 1991’s Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves starring Kevin Costner, Mel Brooks’ satirical take Robin Hood: Men in Tights, or Ridley Scott’s well-meaning but ultimately disappointing Robin Hood from 2010. The latest iteration attempts to supposedly serve as a hip and radical re-invention of the ...

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Thanksgiving with a Pakistani twist

While living in America, I have experienced many amazing festivals and holidays that have their own unique significance and symbolism. Amongst all of them I enjoy Thanksgiving the most, which is celebrated by everyone regardless of their faith or tradition. Thanksgiving is a feast, something that people enjoy all over the world. However, for me, the importance of this celebration is how Americans come together to express what they’re grateful for. It is a celebration where family bonds are reaffirmed through breaking bread together. My teenage children enjoy this celebration as they grow up and partake in aspects of both American ...

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From Cartoon Network to DC: Titans is a dark and gritty superhero show done right

As someone who watched Teen Titans on Cartoon Network religiously, I was delighted when I first heard that DC was developing a live-action TV series based on one of my favourite cartoons. I was excited to watch Robin, Cyborg, Raven, Starfire and Beast Boy team up and take down bad guys while also poking fun at each other. The fact that Greg Berlanti, the man behind shows like The Flash and Arrow, was developing the live action adaption of Teen Titans was the cherry on top. I was hoping that the TV series will have a humorous approach fused with ...

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