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    The silly ex-files
    For the last few weeks I have consciously avoided commenting on the ongoing murky tale of the ‘silly exes’ but this last week saw the entire Kangana Ranaut-Hrithik Roshan saga hit a new low. It was bad enough that someone from Roshan’s team appeared to have shared one-sided email correspondence (Kangana to Hrithik, allegedly) but it got worse when a national daily decided to interview one of Kangana’s really silly exes. Adhyayan Suman’s words were neither challenged nor questioned as he let skeletons come tumbling out of his closet, dragging in other personalities as he thoughtlessly shot his gun off another’s shoulder. Add to that, over the weekend, Twitter saw a very derogatory handle beginning to trend. The phrase openly demeaned the Queen actress. As an outsider watching from the fringes, I am rather appalled by this public muckraking. Whatever the truth might be, there is a line of respect and decency that has been crossed, and there is no way to condone that. There are plenty of theories on whom, why and what for. Hopefully someday the truth of that will be revealed too.

    ManojForging forward
    After his path-breaking performance in Aligarh, Manoj Bajpayee takes on another powerful role in this week’s release, Traffic. Rajesh Pillai, who directed the original Malayalam film of the same name, has also helmed the Hindi version. The original was said to be based on a true event. The Hindi Traffic also stars Jimmy Shergill, Divya Dutta, Prosenjit Chatterjee and Sachin Khedekar. Besides Aligarh, which was based on the true-life story of a deceased university professor, Bajpayee is also part of another biopic. Duronto, which won the National Award for Best Children’s Film this year, follows the story of slum-child Budhia Singh from Bhubaneswar whose achievements as a marathon runner were staggering. He ran some 40-plus marathons by the age of five! Bajpayee plays Budhia’s mentor and coach, Biranchi Das. Duronto is expected to release later this year.

    BB-Snip4Another Chopra
    After Priyanka and Parineeti, it is now Meera Chopra who is hoping to make a mark in Bollywood, like her ‘distant cousins’. Meera, familiar to followers of Tamil and Telugu films, has a lead role in the Vikram Bhatt written 1920 London, directed by Tinu Suresh Desai. Meera plays a Rajasthani princess married to Veer Singh, played by Vishal Karwal. No prizes for guessing that they live in London city until some mysterious events force them to return to Rajasthan to meet with an exorcist played by Sharman Joshi. Let’s see if those acting genes really run in the Chopra family.

    Tiger’s roarBB-Snip1a
    Tiger Shroff cannot really act. He can’t really lip synch to songs either, and he’s rather short on charisma. Yet it’s Shroff that made Baaghi watchable, because he’s got the right skills and authenticity to play an action hero. Akshay Kumar has action and comic timing, John Abraham has muscles and good looks, and Vidyut Jammwal has the training and skills but has not found the right project to catapult him to stardom. Tiger has managed that, nudged along by his famous genes too. From his debut in Heropanti to Baaghi there is a distinct growth in his confidence and comfort in front of the camera. And he comes into his own when he puts all those years of martial arts training on display. And so what if he prefers a nice homely girl, his honesty is disarming, and shouldn’t women too be allowed to opt to be homemakers if they so desire? Why has homemaking become a bad word, somehow? As for Tiger, while I am still not a fan of his romancing techniques, I am curious to see his moves in Remo D’Souza’s superhero movie The Flying Jatt.

    -Udita Jhunjhunwala


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