Darn, I wanted to see this. It is at the theater, but they are predicting a foot of snow by tomorrow morning and my little car's tires are not that good in snow. My last set were good, and these new ones, which are supposed to be the best, are not. I need to go back to the store and say what is wrong here?
So either Thursday or next Sunday if still there. They have been keeping them two weeks.
[snip -D] they are predicting a foot of snow by tomorrow morning and my little car's tires are not that good in snow. My last set were good, and these new ones, which are supposed to be the best, are not. I need to go back to the store and say what is wrong here? [snip - d]
I saw Badlapur in the theater its last night in Chicago last week with my neighbor Nish. She let me know that the word Badlapur is both a real place but Badla means both Change and Revenge. Knowing that double meaning of the word added a lot to my understanding of the film (and why the railway sign kept being shown!) Not sure I will ever see this dark film again, but I'm glad I did see it. Varuan Dhawan really went for the dark. Full thoughts here.
I got to watch Badlapur this weekend (apparently I like to curl up on the couch with take-out and watch disturbing revenge dramas) and I was really impressed. Varun was seriously amazing, and I am really excited to see what he does next. I would never have guessed he could have pulled off such a negative role, or that I would enjoy it as much as I did.
I also was extremely impressed with Varun in Badlapur. I had only previously seen him in Student of the Year. After Badlapur, I watched Humpty Sharma, and he was also very good in that, but I also would never have guessed he could have gone from light roles like that to the darkness of Badlapur. I'm going to be very interested to see Varun and Shahrukh in Dilwale later this year.
On the spur of the moment I went to see the last showing of Badlapur last night before the end of its run, and my neighbor Nish came along.
Man is this movie DARK! Raghu played by Varun Dhawan is a loving husband and father that embarks on a years long quest for revenge after his wife and child are brutally killed.
My neighbor pointed out something interesting about the name of the movie. Badla can mean revenge so revenge - place (City) OR it can also have the meaning of Change. The double meaning of the word applies to both main characters. (It's also a real place, named for where people used' to change horses.)
To me what was interesting was the parallel track of the two characters, as we don't often get almost equal time for the criminal's POV. Here LIak, one of bank robber/car jackers is the criminal from the beginning that you're supposed to hate, you see have this long lasting love with Jhimli the prostitute and he does something selfless in the end. He truly changes.
I had read about the misogyny in the film, but I think particularly the first rape scene shows that Raghu, the grieving husband and father who should be our hero, is now a monster. We are not really rooting for Raghu at that point. He is not Liam Neeson killing all the bad guys, while remaining good. He doesn't remain good. We are shown that his quest for revenge has made HIM the bigger monster (and Liak points that out to him.)
I also thought about that recent rape case in India where an entire town just chased down and lynched the guy. No trial, no jail, just mob justice. In a country where those things can happen, this filmmaker is showing how one criminal was changed and reformed after years, and that "pure" revenge type justice makes someone a monster. A true monster, not just someone who pressed the trigger of of a gun in the heat of a crazy moment.
But, to the point of those who criticize the misogyny in the film, the only woman who escapes Raghu's wrath is the mother of Liak. Because she comes right to Raghu with information. Anyone who shows sympathy with the two criminals becomes the enemy of Raghu. There is a twist where I really thought that he had killed another woman character, too, but he metes out his own version of justice on her.
Badlapur is not a movie I'd sit through again, but I truly admire the acting. I looked up the amazing guy who plays Liak, Nawazuddin Siddiqui, and he's been in so many things that I've seen! He was the young guy in The Lunchbox, and I think the Intelligence agent in Kahaani. What a great character actor. It was worth it just to see him act. And Varun! This is the darling boy from Humpty Sharma and Student of the Year? What a transformation, and my hat's off to him for being willing to go this dark to show his range as an actor.
Nish's reaction was interesting because she said, "Indian movies aren't supposed to be like that. This is something really new. The hero always remains the hero. If he does something bad, a surprise is revealed that justifies his actions." She seemed even more shocked because it really subverted her expectations of what an Indian film would show and be. Frankly, it's interesting to see a film that subverts your expectations and shows people with shades of gray. It reminded me of Baazigar in a way --- another revenge film where our view of the "hero" keeps flipping, Yes, SRK had reason for revenge, but who was the bigger monster in the end?
Badlapur - Very unusual for a bollywood film. I remember being unsatisfied with Agneepath(2012) for how it showed the hero as someone who will go to any length for his revenge, yet it kept on insisting that he was the good guy who deserved our support, referring to him as Ram and what not. This film actually shows the true downward spiral of the hero's morals and gives us the necessary distance to watch this train wreck from afar. This is not the sort of film that I'd chose to watch again, but it is very well done. The performances are spot on from most of the cast, except that Varun Dhawan's boyish voice sometimes mars his dialogue delivery in the "15 years later" part of the film, and Huma Qureshi does not look her part. She looks a bit too posh and put together, especially in the early part of the film, to be believable as a prostitute who has known Nawazuddin's Liak for a long time.
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