Let’s Have That Conversation, Viceroy’s House Film Review

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Viceroy's House courtesy of Another Tongue

Viceroy’s House courtesy of Another Tongue

The Bend It Like Beckham decided to make a personal story with the film Viceroy’s House. Director Gurinder Chadha who gained worldwide recognition with her film Bend It Like Beckham co-wrote the story for this film based on the Partition of India and Pakistan.

The film has been dubbed in Hindi and given the title Partition 1947 and Chadha’s grandparents were directly affected by this historical event.

The film stars the famous Downtown Abbey star Hugh Bonneville as Lord Mountbatten, X-files super star Gillian Anderson as Lady Mountbatten, Manish Dayal as Jeet and Huma Qureshi as Aalia. The film also includes the late Om Puri as Aalia’s blind father and a mix of British Asian and Indian actors in other roles.

Viceroy’s House as the name suggests is set on the last few weeks of the posting of Lord Mountbatten to India to complete the process of Independence and handover India to the countrymen. When he arrives there are many changes that begin and he soon realizes that there is the talk of partition looming. He tries his utmost to avoid the situation but the leaders, including Mahatma Gandhi are at a conundrum and Mountbatten gets the final approval from Prime Minister Churchill and thus the famous Radcliffe line is drawn.

In the backdrop is the love story between Hindu Jeet and Muslim Aalia, who have to make the decision just like the rest of the staff working for the Viceroy and the rest of the country to which side to swear their allegiance.

Gurinder Chadha gives you a great story and she does not waste time in keeping the pace of what needs to be done- the partition. With the production assistance from BBC Films there are several black and white newsreels she uses to add to the story and show the suffering and consequences of the carnage that was ensuing between the Hindus, Sikhs and Muslims. Historical films like these can not be all like Steven Spielberg’s Lincoln, so Gurinder does deliver an important gem to the cinema industry that will be remembered for years to come.

There are excellent performances by Hugh, but it is Gillian as Lady Edwina and Manish Dayal as Jeet who steal your hearts.

Viceroy’s House will serve to be a productive discuss over ek cup chai.

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What a Bang On Bloody Hell! Film Review Rangoon

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Rangoon

“Bloody Hell!” yes, Rangoon is full of British-Indian drama that leads you through a nation fighting for its freedom and a lover who needs to be set free.

This unusual trap laid by Director Vishall Bhardwaj will be interesting for some and not entertaining for most.

Rangoon is a story about a B-grade actress Miss Julia (Kangana Ranuat) who has been propelled to fame by her master, Rusi (Saif Ali Khan) and she is at his beck and call until she meets her real life hero, Nawab Mallik (Shahid Kapoor).

Screenwriter Matthew Robbins worked with Vishal for 7 Khoon Maaf, and it is no wonder there is a similarity in the love story plot, intense, surprising and demanding.

At the backdrop of the film is the ongoing quest for freedom, where Mahatma Gandhi wants to do it the anti-violence way and Subash Chandra Bose creates the Indian National Army. Nawab is crucial to making a promise to freedom happen, but he needs Julia, he never bargained for love, and only one must live.

Kangana Ranuat has repeated her Queen success, while Shahid has definitely stolen the limelight in terms of performance and Saif Ali Khan is at his most handsome best considering age. This trio handle the film superbly.

The other winner in the film is the Cinematographer, Pankaj Kumar who has captured the outdoors in a very new leaf on the silver screen.

Rangoon will be appreciated later in years to come.