Tag Archives: All Is Well

Worst Bollywood Movies of 2015

While the majority of the worst Bollywood films of 2015 are guilty of garden variety stupidity, a pair of movies were especially loathsome. Here are my picks for the worst Bollywood movies of 2015. (Click on the title of each movie to read my original review.)

The dual-narrative romantic drama Roy wound up on the list due to an excess of ennui and emotionally immature dialogue.

I wish that both Gabbar Is Back and Welcome Back had stayed away.

Jazbaa managed to make talented actors Aishwarya Rai Bachchan and Irrfan Khan look ridiculous (and green-tinted).

Two awful examples of Bollywood nepotism made the list. Producer-offspring Jackky Bhagnani’s inevitable rise to super-stardom was deferred yet again by his awful performance in Welcome 2 Karachi. In her Bollywood debut, Govinda’s daughter Tina single-handedly ruins Second Hand Husband with her squinty delivery and nonexistent dance moves.

The most painful theater-going experience of the year was Shamitabh, a movie so annoying that I was literally begging out loud for it to end.

Dirty Politics is a textbook example of how not to make a movie.

The offensive Pyaar Ka Punchnama 2 came in a close second place for suggesting that all women who report being raped are liars. That such a hateful movie purports to be a comedy makes it all the more disturbing.

My worst movie of 2015 struck a nerve, going beyond just offending and veering into moral recklessness. Director Umesh Shukla and writers Sumit Arora and Niren Bhatt should be ashamed for claiming that Alzheimer’s disease is a result of filial neglect that can easily be cured if children are nicer to their parents. Given that a lack of awareness about Alzheimer’s persists in India, using a film to offer bogus medical advice and assign undeserved blame is irresponsible. For those reasons — in addition to it being just a plain old sucky movie — my worst Bollywood film of 2015 is All Is Well.

Kathy’s Ten Worst Bollywood Movies of 2015

  1. All Is Well — Buy/rent at iTunes or Amazon
  2. Pyaar Ka Punchnama 2 — Buy at Amazon
  3. Dirty Politics — Buy/rent at iTunes or Amazon
  4. Shamitabh — Buy at Amazon
  5. Second Hand Husband
  6. Welcome 2 Karachi
  7. Jazbaa — Buy/rent at Amazon
  8. Welcome Back — Buy at Amazon
  9. Gabbar Is Back — Buy/rent at iTunes or Amazon
  10. Roy — Buy/rent at iTunes or Amazon

Previous Worst Movies Lists

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Opening September 4: Welcome Back

After eight years, Welcome‘s gangster brothers — played by Anil Kapoor and Nana Patekar — return to the big screen for Welcome Back. The sequel opens in Chicago area theaters on September 4, 2015.

Welcome Back opens on Friday at the AMC River East 21 in Chicago, Regal Gardens Stadium 1-6 in Skokie, MovieMax Cinemas in Niles, Regal Round Lake Beach Stadium 18 in Round Lake Beach, AMC South Barrington 30 in South Barrington, Regal Cantera Stadium 17 in Warrenville, and AMC Loews Woodridge 18 in Woodridge. (Is there really big enough demand for a Welcome sequel to warrant opening in seven Chicago area theaters? I’m skeptical.) It has a listed runtime of 2 hrs. 35 min.

Phantom gets a second week at the River East 21, MovieMax, South Barrington 30, and Cantera 17.

All Is Well carries over for a third week at MovieMax.

Bajrangi Bhaijaan sticks around for an amazing eighth week at the South Barrington 30, which also holds over Drishyam and the Hindi-dubbed version of Baahubali.

Also on Friday, Learning to Drive continues its run at the River East 21, Century Centre Cinema in Chicago, and Century 12 Evanston/Cinearts 6 in Evanston, and opens at the AMC Northbrook Court 14 in Northbrook, Regal Lincolnshire Stadium 21 in Lincolnshire, South Barrington 30, and Cantera 17.

Other Indian movies showing in the Chicago area this weekend include:

Bollywood Box Office: August 28-30

Phantom turned in a fine opening weekend in North America. From August 28-30, 2015, it earned $260,712 from 107 theaters ($2,437 average). It opened in the eleventh highest number of theaters for a Bollywood film this year and earned the twelfth largest opening weekend gross, so there you go.

Other Hindi films still showing in North American theaters:

  • Bajrangi Bhaijaan: Week 7; $27,399 from 19 theaters; $1,442 average; $8,069,305 total
  • All Is Well: Week 2; $13,392 from 25 theaters; $536 average; $124,567 total
  • Brothers: Week 3; $11,442 from 18 theaters; $636 average; $662,749 total
  • Drishyam: Week 5; $10,672 from eight theaters; $1,334 average; $726,706 total
  • Baahubali (Hindi-dubbed): Week 6; $6,434 from six theaters; $1,072 average; $583,354 total

Source: Rentrak, via Bollywood Hungama

Opening August 28: Phantom

The Bollywood terrorism thriller Phantom — starring Saif Ali Khan and Katrina Kaif — opens in Chicago area theaters on August 28, 2015.

Phantom opens on Friday at MovieMax Cinemas in Niles, AMC South Barrington 30 in South Barrington, and Regal Cantera Stadium 17 in Warrenville. It has a listed runtime of 2 hrs. 28 min.

All Is Well carries over for a second week at all of the above theaters.

The rest of the South Barrington 30’s weekend Hindi lineup includes Brothers, Drishyam, Bajrangi Bhaijaan, and the dubbed version of Baahubali.

Also opening in limited release on Friday is Learning to Drive, starring Ben Kingsley as a Sikh driving instructor who helps Patricia Clarkson find her independence following the breakup of her marriage. Learning to Drive opens at the AMC River East 21 in Chicago, Century Centre Cinema in Chicago, and the Century 12 Evanston/Cinearts 6 in Evanston on Friday, before expanding into suburban theaters in the coming weeks.

Other Indian movies showing in the Chicago area this weekend include:

Bollywood Box Office: August 21-23

All Is Well turned in an unspectacular opening weekend in North American theaters. From August 21-23, 2015, it earned $74,033 from 55 theaters ($1,346 average).

While one might have expected more from a movie starring Rishi Kapoor and Abhishek Bachchan, the results are typical for a Bollywood movie opening in fewer than 70 theaters. About half of all Hindi films released in the US and Canada last year — 25 films, not counting The Lunchbox — opened on fewer than 70 screens, and only six of them earned more than $75,000 in their opening weekend. This year, just two of the ten Bollywood films to open in fewer than 70 theaters passed that threshold: Hamari Adhuri Kahani ($94,005) and the surprise hit NH10 ($143,209). The low opening weekend theater count suggests that distributors weren’t expecting much from All Is Well, and the movie met those expectations.

In its second weekend, Brothers‘ business fell by about 75% from its opening weekend. It earned $90,284 from 129 theaters ($700 average), bringing its North American total to $607,945.

Bajrangi Bhaijaan, on the other hand, held strong in its sixth week. It took in $65,911 from 34 theaters ($1,939 average), bringing its total to $8,009,524.

Drishyam also remained popular, earning another $26,162 from 15 theaters ($1,744 average). Its total stands at $709,794.

Source: Rentrak, via Bollywood Hungama

Movie Review: All Is Well (2015)

AllIsWellZero Stars (out of 4)

Buy/rent the movie at iTunes
Buy the DVD at Amazon
Buy the soundtrack at Amazon

Few movies have angered me as much as All Is Well. It’s cruel and offensive, making light of human suffering for the sake of an easy moral lesson.

This is a huge surprise given that Umesh Shukla is behind the camera. The last film he directed (and co-wrote) — 2012’s OMG: Oh My God — is funny, understanding, and generous of spirit. Then again, Shukla also directed 2009’s Dhoondte Reh Jaoge, a rip-off of The Producers that I also described as offensive. Maybe OMG was the aberration, and All Is Well is Shukla showing his true colors again.

All Is Well fancies itself a comedy about a bickering father and son, played by Rishi Kapoor and Abhishek Bachchan, respectively. When Bhalla (Kapoor) isn’t losing money via his unpopular bakery, he’s yelling at his wife Pammi (Supriya Pathak) and son Inder (Bachchan).

Growing up in such a hostile environment turns Inder into a complete misanthrope. After having been kicked out of the house for calling his dad a loser, he’s spent ten years in Bangkok, avoiding his parents and struggling as a musician.

Inder’s misanthropy is most acutely directed at Nimmi (Asin Thottumkal), a brain-dead chatterbox who is in love with him. Nimmi is so oblivious that she can’t recognize Inder’s contempt for her. Her arranged marriage subplot is shoddily tacked on to the main story, in which Inder is tricked into coming home to settle his father’s debts. Everyone is an unrepentant jerk throughout, and few cinematic “happy endings” have felt less earned.

All Is Well does wrong by so many people. Dwarfs and people with dark complexions are the butt of needless, hurtful jokes. The movie — written by Sumit Arora and Niren Bhatt — has no respect for women, hence why Nimmi is portrayed as a total dumbass, desperate to marry.

No character suffers as much as Pammi, who is a human plot device. Inder returns to India to find his mother in an “old folks home” suffering from Alzheimer’s. (Note that Pathak is only 54.) The movie makes the following untrue claims about Alzheimer’s, all in the name of moving the story forward:

  • The progression of Alzheimer’s can be stalled if you keep the patient happy at all times.
  • Alzheimer’s is caused by familial neglect, somewhat on the part of one’s spouse, but mostly due to neglect by one’s children.
  • Alzheimer’s can be improved, if not outright cured, if said neglectful children move back in with their parents.

I haven’t mentioned it at this website, but earlier this year, my mother died in her mid-sixties after suffering for five years with a degenerative neurological condition. Not Alzheimer’s, but another incapacitating disease with no specific cause and with a similarly slow decline (both mental and physical) and grim prognosis.

It’s hard to watch a parent undergo such hardship without any hope of a cure and without anyone to blame for it. There was no accident, no source of infection. There was no one to yell at, no one to sue — not that it would have helped. She was predisposed to get sick, she did, and it was horrible.

So, for Umesh Shukla, Sumit Arora, and Niren Bhatt to imply that someone like my mom might suffer a terrible death because her kids didn’t pay enough attention to her is bullshit. It’s offensive, and it’s mean.

To make light of such a dreadful condition for the sake of a comedy film is beyond callous. Pammi might as well be just another prop, the way she’s shuffled from car to house, forced into a situation she can’t possibly understand. She utters only a handful of words, which is a tremendous waste of an actress of Pathak’s caliber.

There’s no reason to see All Is Well. None. Something this hateful shouldn’t be rewarded.

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Opening August 21: All Is Well

One new Hindi movie opens in Chicago area theaters on August 21, 2015. Sadly, it isn’t Manjhi: The Mountain Man but All Is Well, a comedy whose trailer promises lots of yelling and pee jokes. The only reasons for optimism are that it’s directed by Umesh Shukla of OMG fame and stars Abhishek Bachchan, who’s good in comedies.

All Is Well opens Friday at MovieMax Cinemas in Niles, AMC South Barrington 30 in South Barrington, and Regal Cantera Stadium 17 in Warrenville. It has a listed runtime of 2 hrs. 7 min.

Brothers carries over for a second week at all three of the above theaters, plus the AMC River East 21 in Chicago, Regal Gardens Stadium 1-6 in Skokie, and Marcus Addison Cinema in Addison.

The South Barrington 30 and Cantera 17 carry over both Drishyam and Bajrangi Bhaijaan, which also sticks around at MovieMax.

The Pakistani film Bin Roye gets another week at the South Barrington 30.

Other Indian films playing in the Chicago area this weekend: