Tag Archives: Roy

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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Bollywood Box Office: March 13-15

After enduring three weeks with no new Hindi films in North American theaters, fans turned out in large numbers for the thriller NH10. During the weekend of March 13-15, 2015, NH10 earned $143,209 from 46 theaters. Its per-screen average earnings of $3,113 are second highest for the year, behind Baby‘s $4,393 opening weekend average.

NH10‘s per-screen average is twice that of another actress-led film from 2015, January’s Dolly Ki Doli ($1,557 average). Dolly Ki Doli had the theoretical advantages of Rajkummar Rao in a supporting role and a cameo by Saif Ali Khan, but it overreached by opening in 72 theaters. Plus, NH10 is simply a better movie.

2014 featured two more direct comparisons by which to measure NH10‘s performance: Queen and Gulaab Gang. Both movies released on March 7, 2014, with Queen opening in 39 theaters in the United States and Canada and Gulaab Gang in 46. In their first weekend in theaters, Queen took in $161,998 ($4,154 average) and Gulaab Gang $60,718 ($1,320 average).

It’s hard to imagine any movie receiving the extraordinary uptick in business that propelled Queen to an eventual total in excess of $1.4 million, but NH10‘s opening weekend performance is closer to that of Queen than to other recent female-led films. With no new releases of note on the horizon for the rest of the month and a positive IMDb rating of 7.6 stars, NH10 should hold up well in the weeks to come.

Other Hindi movies still in North American theaters:

  • Badlapur: Week 4; $6,495 from eight theaters; $812 average; 418,490 total
  • Roy: Week 5; $196 from one theater; $242,344 total
  • Shamitabh: Week 6; $52 from one theater; $299,352 total

Source: Rentrak, via Bollywood Hungama

Bollywood Box Office: March 6-8

It’s been three weeks since the last Bollywood movie of note released in the United States and Canada, and that fact is apparent in the North American box office numbers from the weekend of March 6-8, 2015 (not that the weekend was much better on the domestic release front):

  • Badlapur: Week 3; $20,368 from 24 theaters; $849 average; $406,380 total
  • Roy: Week 4; $362 from two theaters; $181 average; $242,148 total
  • Shamitabh: Week 5; $194 from one theater; $299,305 total

Let’s hope that the release of NH10 on March 13 gets things back on track.

Source: Rentrak, via Bollywood Hungama

Bollywood Box Office: February 27-March 1

With no new Hindi films in theaters to provide competition, Badlapur dominated the North American box office for a second weekend in a row. From February 27-March 1, 2015, Badlapur earned $86,959 from 58 theaters ($1,499 average). That brings its total earnings in the United States and Canada to $367,392.

In its third weekend in theaters, Roy took in $3,037 from seven theaters ($434 average), bringing its North American total to $240,765. Shamitabh closed out its four-week run with an additional $268 from two theaters ($138 average), bringing its total earnings to $299,071.

2013’s Siddharth is in the midst of a limited run in Canada. In two weeks, it has earned $5,331.

Source: Rentrak, via Bollywood Hungama

In Theaters: February 27, 2015

Yash Raj Films is taking a wait-and-see approach regarding the international release of its latest film, Dum Laga Ke Haisha. As a result, there are no new Hindi movies opening in the Chicago area on Friday, February 27, 2015.

Badlapur carries over for a second week at the Regal Gardens Stadium 1-6 in Skokie, MovieMax Cinemas in Niles, AMC South Barrington 30 in South Barrington, and Regal Cantera Stadium 17 in Warrenville. The South Barrington 30 also gives a Roy a third weekend.

Other Indian movies showing at MovieMax this weekend include Ram Leela (Telugu), Kaaki Sattai (Tamil), Bham Bolenath (Telugu), Fireman (Malayalam), Temper (Telugu), Anegan (Tamil).

Bollywood Box Office: February 20-22

During the weekend of February 20-22, the thriller Badlapur posted one of the better opening weekends for a Bollywood movie in North America in 2015 so far. From 92 theaters, Badlapur earned $225,250, a per-screen average of $2,448. Its per-screen average is second highest for the year after the $4,393 average posted by Baby in its opening weekend.

Other Hindi movies in North American theaters:

  • Roy: Week 2; $19,009 from 33 theaters; $576 average; $230,599 total
  • Shamitabh: Week 3; $847 from four theaters; $212 average; $295,691 total
  • PK: Week 10; $121 from one theater; $10,550,569 total

Source: Rentrak, via Bollywood Hungama

Opening February 20: Badlapur

My most hotly anticipated Bollywood film of 2015 hits Chicago area theaters on February 20. Varun Dhawan anchors the revenge thriller Badlapur, whose fantastic supporting cast includes Nawazuddin Siddiqui, Divya Dutta, Yami Gautam, and my girl Huma Qureshi.

Badlapur opens on Friday at the AMC River East 21 in Chicago, Regal Gardens Stadium 1-6 in Skokie, 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. 15 min.

Roy carries over for a second week at the South Barrington 30, Cantera 17, and MovieMax, which also holds over Shamitabh for a third week.

Other Indian movies playing in the Chicago area this weekend include Temper (Telugu w/no subtitles) at Cinemark at Seven Bridges in Woodridge and MovieMax, which also carries Bandipotu (Telugu), Anegan (Tamil), Malli Malli Idi Rani Roju (Telugu), and Yennai Arindhaal (Tamil).

Bollywood Box Office: February 13-15

Ranbir Kapoor’s return to the big screen (not counting his cameo in PK) wasn’t the resounding success one would’ve hoped for. During its debut weekend of February 13-15, 2015, Kapoor’s Roy earned $165,203 from 83 theaters ($1,990 average) in the United States and Canada.

Kapoor’s last major role was in 2013’s Besharam. That film was branded a total flop after earning just $504,000 from 217 theaters in North America. While Besharam‘s extravagant theater count magnified its degree of failure, it still averaged more per screen — $2,323 — than Roy.

Other Hindi movies still in North American theaters:

  • Shamitabh: Week 2; $23,936 from 36 theaters; $665 average; $289,133 total
  • Baby: Week 4; $5,491 from three theaters; $1,830 average; $730,288 total
  • PK: Week 9; $264 from one theater; $10,550,310 total
  • Dolly Ki Doli: Week 4; $90 from one theater; $173,887 total

Source: Rentrak, via Bollywood Hungama

Movie Review: Roy (2015)

Roy_film_poster1 Star (out of 4)

Buy or rent the movie at iTunes
Buy the DVD at Amazon
Buy the soundtrack on Amazon

Roy is full of so much talking and so little action that it should have been an audiobook instead of a movie. Then again, with such dull dialogue, who would listen to it?

Arjun Rampal plays Kabir, a celebrity film director. Kabir is the kind of narcissistic jerk who stomps out his cigarette butts on the floor of a hotel hallway and who uses a manual typewriter while flying on a plane.

After the success of Guns and Guns 2, Kabir is stymied by writer’s block while working on Guns 3. The first fifteen minutes of Roy consist of shots of Kabir sitting idly in front of the typewriter, brushing his teeth, feeding his fish, and fending off the concerned inquiries of his excessively patient producer, Meera (Shernaz Patel).

In the world of Roy, news reports consist entirely of details of Kabir’s romantic life and reports of art theft. A TV report about a painting stolen in Malaysia prompts Kabir to take his crew there to film Guns 3. There, Kabir becomes smitten with an independent movie director, Ayesha (Jacqueline Fernandez).

[Correction: In addition to art theft and Kabir’s romantic life, news reports in Roy also feature extensive coverage of indie film festivals. Just like real life.]

Kabir casts an actress who looks exactly like Ayesha to play the romantic interest in Guns 3, opposite his protagonist, Roy (Ranbir Kapoor). There is absolutely no explanation offered for Ayesha’s doppelgänger.

Action — such as it is — switches between Kabir and Ayesha in the real world and Roy and the lookalike, Tia, in the movie world of Guns. Both worlds are dominated by boring, pseudo-intellectual conversations, punctuated by languid song montages in which people drive around in cars or Roy rides a motorcycle.

Given that Kabir is an emotionally stunted pre-teen trapped in a 40-year-old body, nothing he or Roy says on the nature of being contains any kind of insight. There’s so much undirected angst in the dialogue, it’s like it was written by the guys from the ’90s band Bush.

An excess of ennui in their characters yields clunky, detached performances by Rampal and Kapoor. Fernandez — whose beauty is the best thing Roy has going for it — is better in scenes as Tia, in which she plays an heiress trapped in a 1960s time warp, at least as far as her teased hair is concerned.

Debutant writer-director Vikramjit Singh has a good sense for framing shots, and the movie is quite pretty. Sadly, the visual interest ends there, since Singh focuses all his attention on writing bland dialogue instead of considering what it would look like when delivered onscreen.

Without additional assistance on the script, Singh’s story feels hollow. Even after Kabir undergoes his supposed metamorphosis from spoiled man-child to emotionally mature adult, he still does something incredibly selfish.

Ayesha is on her way to a film festival in another country. For independent filmmakers, festivals provide opportunities to network and drum up publicity and funds for their next projects. Wealthy, connected Kabir stops Ayesha at the airport, telling her, in essence, “If you love me, you won’t get on the plane.”

Kabir puts his own desires ahead of Ayesha’s career, which is all the more selfish since Kabir’s got more than enough cash to buy his own plane ticket and go with her. Considering that Singh’s debut film features A-listers like Kapoor, Rampal, and Fernandez, it’s not surprising that he has an easier time identifying with a celebrity like Kabir rather than a struggling filmmaker like Ayesha.

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Opening February 13: Roy and MSG

The romantic thriller Roy — starring Ranbir Kapoor, Jacqueline Fernandez, and Arjun Rampal — hits Chicago area theaters on February 13, 2015.

Roy 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. 26 min.

Also opening at MovieMax on Friday is MSG: The Messenger of God, which has a runtime of 3 hrs. 17 min.

Shamitabh carries over for a second week at MovieMax, Cantera 17 and South Barrington 30, which also holds over Baby for a fourth week.

Other Indian movies showing in the Chicago area this weekend include Temper (Telugu w/no subtitles) at MovieMax, Muvico Rosemont 18 in Rosemont, Century Stratford Square in Bloomingdale, and Cinemark at Seven Bridges in Woodridge, and Yennai Arindhaal (Tamil w/English subtitles) at MovieMax and Seven Bridges. MovieMax also carries Anegan (Tamil) and Malli Malli Idi Rani Roju (Telugu), as well as English-language coverage of the India vs. Pakistan Cricket World Cup match on Saturday night.