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Mausam Has Strong Start In Rajasthan And CI
Friday 23rd September 2011 15.30 IST
Mausam had a strong start in Rajasthan and CI especially in the single screens. The noon show at Rambha and Rangmahal in Bhopal was 100%. Rajasthan was very good with Jaipur having 80% collections over the first two shows.
The single screens in UP like Gurdev in Kanpur and Prabhat in Dehradun were also 100%. Overall the single screens have started on a better note than multiplexes in these areas.
The multiplexes in the North also showed a better response in the afternoon shows and the film may eventually have a good to decent first day if the evening shows improve further.
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Joined: 14 December 2008
The boy and girl first meet in the back-alleys of their Punjab village, where love finds seed instantly, aided by ink and mehndi cue cards that the twosome exchanges in silent conversation. Alas, they are destined to separate, only to reunite in the lushness of Scotland. The boy is now an Indian Air Force pilot while the girl is learning the ballet. Though they're older and wiser, perhaps, the romance is still quite fresh and enticing enough to watch. You hope they'll stick together this time, but fate intervenes again, to draw the boy away into war. The romance hits pause and you begin to lose interest, it fading away as the post-war hero runs into his girl once again in the iciness of Switzerland's Euro rail, only to part again. It is at this point that you give up on the film, so much so that when the couple is finally reunited in the most random of ways in Ahmedabad a few years later, you find you simply can't care about this pair anymore, content to just be rid of this dragging affair. That's a good thing, perhaps, for it is towards its very end that Pankaj Kapur's Mausam gets quite ridiculous.
Great actors don't make great directors, one supposes. That disappointment held true a few years ago, when Naseeruddin Shah turned to film-making with Yun Hota Toh Kya Hota, and with the great Pankaj Kapur turning director here, it still seems to hold true, though only in parts. Aiming to tell an epic love story, Kapur certainly has his heart in the right place with Mausam. However, it is in the way that he gets indulgent at a few too many places, that the first time director seems to be lose his way more than a bit.
Kapur's story deals with the romance between Harry (Shahid Kapoor) and Aayat (Sonam Kapoor), a decade-spanning love story which blossoms all over the globe through trials and tragedies. Clearly, this must count as one of the unluckiest couples in the world, uncannily managing to find their way into the midst of virtually every tragedy to befall India between the early nineties and noughties. Still, when the two first meet in the lanes of Mallukot, the chemistry between Harry and Aayat is undeniable, the two dancing away their cares at the former's sister's wedding. While Harry is the handsome Punjabi son of a Mallukot professor, the graceful Aayat is the only daughter of a Kashmiri Muslim who is fleeing the valley with his Kashmiri Pandit best friend, while his daughter is safe at her Fatema bua's (Supriya Pathak Kapur) place in Mallukot.
Tragedy strikes though, just when the two are ready to confess their love, as the Babri masjid is torn down, and Aayat's family flees to safer havens. By the time they meet seven years later, Harry has turned into IAF Sqn.Ldr. Harinder Singh while Aayat is a ballet dancer living and running an Indian store in Scotland with her dad and his best friend, who she affectionately calls Machu (Anupam Kher), diminutive for Maharaj Chachu. Love takes root again, this time over a dinner table where the two seem to have a literal heart-to-heart. Just when the two are ready to make it official, however, Harinder is called away from his Scottish exchange program to Kargil, where he goes down in battle, coming back handicapped and losing touch with Aayat again, who has abandoned Scotland looking for him. Searching for her everywhere, he does encounter her again, though she doesn't know, as he finds her in a Swiss train, sleeping on the shoulder of a man he doesn't know, with a child in her lap.
Ultimately, by the time Harry and Aayat reunite in Ahmedabad in the midst of the riots, they've taken so long to get to the point that you're hard-pressed to pay attention. Perhaps Pankaj Kapur realises this too, injecting a rather ill-fitted 'last-action-hero' sequence in the climax, and turning the affair into a bit of a farce.
Kapur scores with Mausam when his core love story is still fresh. Appropriately, then, the most enjoyable moments of the film come in the first half, when the action is still settled in Mallukot. While the romance between Harry and Aayat is charming here, the comic scenes between Harry and his dadajee are hilarious. The film bursts with effervescence here, Shahid Kapoor in his element as Harry, infusing the film with the energy of his performance, jumping to songs like sajh dhaj ke. However, as soon as things take a sombre turn, the film proceeds downhill. In the second half, Shahid and Sonam as their own older versions are a bit too grave and serious to hold one's interest. Still, in his initial moments as the dashing pilot, Shahid shows that he can rock an IAF uniform, while Sonam manages to look charming even while sporting a powdered wig.
The film comes undone when Kapur gives leeway to his indulgent tendencies. In scenes like the one where Aayat first spots Harry in Scotland, you wonder why she doesn't just go up and say hello to him, instead of taking up screen time, stalking him through the streets and concert halls. The second round of their courtship, still in Scotland, drags similarly.
Still, Mausam is not without its strengths. One in chief is named Shahid Kapoor. Under his father's eye, Shahid clearly flourishes, channelling just the right amount of charms as Harry in the first half. Though the performance flags a bit when he is reintroduced as the sober air force pilot, Shahid picks up the threads again, when, as the handicapped Harinder, he manages to convey the air of a man who's too proud to admit he's longing for his love.
Sonam Kapoor, on the other hand fails to grow with the needs of the film. While she does fine as the young girl finding her first love in the village, as the lady in Scotland, her performance is no more nuanced, the movement of story seeming to simply be a change of costumes for her.
Amongst other performances, Supriya Pathak Kapur is perfect as ever, while Anupam Kher's role as Machu could really have been done away with. Aditi Sharma is intriguing as Rajjo, the village belle longing for Harry, though Pankaj Kapur chooses to let her angle flounder.Manoj Pahwa does well for laughs in the initial moments of the film as Gulzari, while Amar Talwar is okay Aayat's father.
On the technical side of things, the film scores in a big way. Binod Pradhan's cinematography flourishes in the film's varied settings, picking out visuals as beautiful in Mallukot as in Scotland and Switzerland. The film's music is also a huge plus, with some exquisite tunes coming from Pritam and lyricist Irshad Kamil.
Ultimately, if Mausam comes undone, it is all upto Pankaj Kapur. Though the actor's keen eye shows in a few sequences, it is clear that Kapur needs to work on keeping his story engaging throughout. The lack of focus is most evident in the fact that while Kapur tries his best to tell what he hopes is a timeless love story, through the entirety of the film, he is, in fact, caught up in the historic chronology of events as they happened, Babri, Kargil and more. If Mausam manages to strike big at the box-office, perhaps we shall see a better film from Pankaj. If it doesn't, one supposes it would be safe to see that it just wasn't Kapur's season'
Joined: 14 December 2008
|After surviving almost three hours of this well-meaning but unbearably indulgent film, the audience is likely to be perplexed. There is a definite buzz around the film for its dewy romantic look, its lead actors, and for Pankaj Kapur ' an actor par excellence who has dabbled in writing before but makes his directorial debut with Mausam. These expectations crash resoundingly in the first half itself, and get further pronounced as the film progresses.|
The film delays in getting to the point, is manipulative to the extent of using common tricks like tearful toddlers, plus the newbie filmmaker is caught up in managing a canvas so complex that's set in different time spans and locations, he overlooks humanizing his characters.
Mausam starts encouragingly enough. The love story is clichd from the start, but the atmospherics and beauty draw us in. Harry (Shahid Kapoor) lives in a laid-back Punjab village where there are sugarcane fields, tractors, and women exclaiming 'hai main mar jaavan'. Harry falls in love with new girl on the block ' Aayat (Sonam Kapoor) in a typical filmi first meeting where he has a clumsy accident and she finds it hilarious.
The viewer sits through the two exchanging shy glances again and again. Just when their love story is about to progress, they are separated. Aayat leaves the village overnight and the two lovers are to have a coincidental meeting several years later. This pattern continues throughout the film ' circumstances seem to control this couple's coupling.
Covering a decade, writer-director Pankaj Kapur borrows from real events like the Kashmir insurgency, Kargil war, communal riots, and the 9/11 terrorist attack. Kapur's aim is well-intentioned, but when an entire film rests on a romance, the film has to have a solid couple at the centre.
Both charismatic actors otherwise, Shahid Kapoor and Sonam Kapoor don't make for an extraordinary couple. Part of the fault lies with their characterization ' Harry's character is utterly ordinary transforming into Hero No.1 towards the end, and Aayat's character is put on a pedestal of purity. It starts with the name (which means holy couplet, the film informs us), the mainly white-hued wardrobe, to the head-lowered "jee bua" type dialogue, and the graceful ballet dance scene.
One concedes that Kapur wanted to make an epic, old-fashioned romance, but the characters at the center of the story cannot afford to be this staid. They have to draw out the viewer's attention at least, forget emotions.
Humour is induced almost forcibly. So you have fat guy jokes, Gujju accent jokes, and so on. Suddenly, Shahid breaks into a Punjabi song to turn on the Jab We Met charm.
Sonam is stuck with the ethereal beauty act yet again after Saawariya. She's dressed in pretty pastels, long neck framed by cascading curls, pale face, and measured voice. The actors do marginally well, but do not create magic as a couple; no, not even when they're ball-dancing ever so stylishly.
Shahid's performances is consistent but one that's too controlled and self-absorbed. Sonam is convincing in this half-baked role, but one is still waiting for makers to cast this heroine in varied roles. The supporting cast, especially, Supriya Pathak, does well. But the level of acting overall is below the actors' potential (a pregnant lady must touch her tummy again and again, so the audience gets it!).
The finale, unbelievable and completely out of sync with the rest of the film, could put the cheesiness of yesteryears' 'bichde hue judwa bhai' plot to shame.
The script has some gaping holes. There is no explanation for the lack of communication between the two lovers in an era of mobile phones. Even if one argues that mobiles were rarer a decade ago, the landline could have been a tool. Aayat knew Harry's sister's number at all times. Even Aayat's dressing is inconsistent, flitting from burqas to salwars to skirts to colourless sarees.
The best part about the film is veteran cinematographer Binod Pradhan's soulful camerawork. There are some humane moments that leave an impact ' the Kashmiri man who has fled to Punjab and is alarmed by innocuous commotion at night. Or the secularist take of the film in showing how all communities are adversely affected in the face of riots and bomb blasts.
Mausam is a film one wanted to like. But the truth is, it's marred by long-drawn storytelling, mediocre performances, and a bizarre finale. Find your reasons, if you must watch it!
Verdict: One and a half stars
Joined: 14 December 2008
Joined: 14 December 2008
Story: Mausam revolves around a Kashmiri girl, Aayat (Sonam Kapoor) and Punjabi boy Harry (Shahid Kapoor). It's a love story, the first season of which begins as a mere adolescent attraction, in a small village of Punjab. Then, it develops into a youthful love between the duo in season two. Their love realises its own depth in the hours of separation through season three. And finally, in the fourth season, their love culminates into togetherness, after losing many precious things in life.
Story Treatment: Although, the storyline of Mausam does not have many flaws, as it centres around two lovers taking it forward, however, the treatment is not flawless. The first half of the movie builds up expectations amongst the audience, but an overtly-dragged second half leaves audience disheartened. So much so, that Sonam-Shahid's love story clubbed with the reasons cited for their separation become a bit difficult to digest.
There are also few loose ends attached to the story, such as the fact that all throughout the film, the two lovers face a problem even in keeping in touch with each other, but surprisingly, they always manage to bump into each other during different situations and at different places. The terror trauma of 1993, Kargil war of 1999 and the 9/11 attacks in USA have been used to underline Shahid-Sonam's deep love. Alas, it fails to strike the right chord. Also, the much controversial IAF portions of the film, turn out to be smoke without fire. The director fails to grab attention during the Kargil war sequence, but the scenes woven around the Gujarat riots, definitely make you sit on the edge of your seat.
Star Cast: Shahid Kapoor steals the show and creates an impression with his outstanding performance. The actor manages to portray Harry at different ages, without looking unnatural. Sonam Kapoor has definitely been blessed with the right director, who churns out the right amount of emotions out of her, without letting her go overboard. Shahid and Sonam, as a pair, seem strictly okay as Sonam's lost and unnatural look kills the effort. There's a pretence attached to the intensely romantic moments. Nevertheless, the actress displays some emotional moments in the second half with grace. Supriya Pathak, as usual delivers a top-notch performance, while Anupam Kher is wasted with his poor characterisation and the character's abrupt ending. Aditi Sharma, who plays Rajjo and seems obsessed with Shahid, plays her part well by doing justice to whatever she's offered.
Direction: Pankaj Kapur's great acting calibre surely forms the spine of his directorial debut. The director tries to present a story based on the clichd love and separation theme in a fresh format, making it visually more appealing. The unnecessary narration of each and every scene makes the plot fall flat, which could have been avoided, as the story in itself has nothing much to offer.
Although Kapoor exhibits his talent of understanding the power-points of his cast and gets the best out of them, the slow paced love story takes off the entertaining quotient from his work.
Dialogue/cinematography/music: Cinematography is good and makes Mausam a visual treat, capturing beautiful locations. Shahid and Sonam look their best, justifying every phase of their life. 'Rabba Main Toh Mar Gaya Oye' capsulises Shahid's attraction towards Sonam, which makes the number more catchy and heart-warming.
Retro-tunes have been effectively used to give a musical feel to the story. 'Abhi Na Jao Chod Kar' is indicative of Sonam's intensity towards her love and 'Ajeeb Dastaan Hai Yeh' truly represents Rajjo's obession towards her long lost love.
The dialogues have been scripted with mediocrity, with most of them resembling everyday conversations between people and fail to impress. However, Shahid's dialogues woven around sunset, where he tries to explain love and its existence, overshadow the chocolate-boy image, which he usually carries.
3 ups and downs: Shahid reigns throughout. After Jab We Met and Kaminey, Shahid has another movie which might give his critics a chance to appreciate him. In fact, Shahid fans can give up on the storyline to see him don the role of an officer in uniform, in a fashion similar to Tom Cruise in Top Gun. If only the director had dealt with the slow-paced narration of the movie, this flick could have been a more pleasant experience.
Joined: 14 December 2008
Director: Pankaj Kapur
Cast: Shahid Kapoor, Sonam Kapoor, Supriya Pathak
There's a stillness about Mausam, which is rare in today's fast-paced two-hours-and-you-are-out kind of films. It may be Pankaj Kapur's first feature as director, but the veteran actor is no stranger to storytelling, having directed plays and some impressive television shows in the past. In Mausam, he displays a distinct, unhurried style, allowing the story to take its course, and letting it develop over a period of time.
The intention was to make a no-holds-barred romance, clearly, and Kapur does just that, unabashed in his approach (the PR machinery would like you to believe it's 'epic', but that's just pushing it). Kapur makes certain scenes sparkle with an understated, sensitive approach.
But Mausam, beautiful as it is in parts, just doesn't work in totality. The story is stretched beyond belief - not to mention it's hard to digest after a point - and unnecessary scenes only add to the misery. It's nothing that couldn't be fixed at the editing table (Sreekar Prasad), but Mausam's follies lie in Kapur's script itself.
Two lovers separated by circumstances repeatedly would be acceptable if the situations were at least believable. But the story demands you to suspend belief repeatedly, and gets convoluted beyond repair eventually.
The first hour of Mausam, though, is a breeze. Set in a village in Punjab, this is where Harry and Aayat meet. Harry aka Harinder Singh is the village bum, naughty but likeable. Aayat's a Kashmiri Muslim, who had to flee because her father was close to Pandits in the valley.
This is familiar terrain, yet there's something refreshing about it. Scenes laden with humour (the village sarpanch is a riot) come thick and fast, many of them adding in no way to the story but creating a likeable atmosphere you want to settle in. About 40 minutes down, you are slightly bothered that the plot hasn't progressed much, but you expect good things to happen. Except, they don't.
Mausam becomes a task to sit through when the 'story' begins to unfold. The romance between the boy and girl has been established (including a marvellous sequence where they pass notes to each other as Harry's sister sleeps in the same room). Now, the conflict sets in: the girl leaves unannounced; the boy has to get on with his life. Time elapses. Till they meet again. And the cycle is repeated. Again. And again.
The film's set in the '90s, so the difficulty to keep in touch might seem valid, but the lovers don't learn from their mistakes. If I was separated from the love of my life for seven long years, the one thing I'll do is make sure all means of communication remain open. Also, how difficult can it be to track down an Indian Air Force pilot? Who's operating from a base, mind you.
What makes Mausam really excruciating is the forced juxtaposition of real events as a backdrop. The Babri masjid demolition, Bombay blasts, Kargil war, 9/11, Godhra. It's like ticking off a check list, without it really helping the narrative in anyway.
'Oh, she's in America, 9/11 to come.' 'She's in Ahmedabad now, Godhra will follow.' Besides, Kapur doesn't really attempt to delve deeper. If the idea was to merely provide a backdrop, the references could have been subtler. Here, everything is in-your-face. And it all leads to a climax which is inane, to put it mildly.
Among the film's redeeming factors are Binod Pradhan's fabulous cinematography and a lilting score by Pritam. Shahid Kapoor exudes charm and confidence. As the young Harry, Shahid excels, while he tends to faulter as the older, more mature air force pilot. But Shahid's surely come-of-age with Mausam, and delivers his most accomplished performance.
Sonam has little to do, or say, and that's not such a bad thing. You don't care much about Aayat, despite her innocence, because Sonam brings nothing to the character. Supriya Pathak and other character actors (Manoj Pahwa, Aditi Sharma, Anupam Kher) do well.
The old-world charm of Mausam is likeable, but doesn't salvage it. In the end, the only thing epic about the film is its unwarranted length.
Joined: 14 December 2008
Joined: 14 December 2008
Pankaj Kapur's directorial debut Mausam has hit theatres today. This love story is different from the usual boy meets girl tale. Here boy meets girl but their walking down the path together is unlike other Bollywood love stories. The director has showcased how destiny brings the two lovers together after parting ways due to socio-political issues and religious conflicts.
The story of Mausam centres on a love story between a Punjabi Air Force pilot Shahid Kapoor (Harry) and a Kashmiri girl Sonam Kapoor (Aayat). This epic love story has been set against the background of religious conflicts and political hostilities. Their love story has four phases and in these four phases they undergo several ups and downs. The first season shows the adolescent attraction between teenagers Aayat and Harry in a village in Punjab, the second phase shows the realization of their love, the last two phases shows the culmination of their love into togetherness and the amount of hardships and sacrifices which enables to learn the meaning of universal love.
Shahid Kapoor is the main highlight of the film. Right from a carefree wastrel to an ardent lover boy and from a solemn pilot to one, who agonizes for his parted love, Shahid has managed to perform each shade of his character with confidence. Sonam brings out the precise blend of native resolve and feminine fragility. She has portrayed emotional moments with grace. Anupam Kher was average; Supriya Pathak has delivered an outstanding performance while Aditi Sharma does justice to her role.
Pankaj Kapoor has tried portraying the love story with sensitivity and style but his narration is too slow paced. The first half of the film is convincing but the second half is unimpressive and tends to unnecessarily meander. This unnecessary narration makes the plot week.
The film has simple dialogues which resembles everyday conversations. Binod Pradhan's camerawork is luminous and a treat to the eyes. The film has enticing and hummable soundtracks by Pritam and wonderful lyrics by Irshad Kam.
Mausam has failed to live up to the expectations. On the whole it is an average film.
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