BOLLYWOOD BOX OFFICE NEWS – OCTOBER 16, 2017

Judwaa 2” managed 7.26 *crore over its third weekend, coming in just under the 8 crore predicted on Friday.  This brings its lifetime total to Rs. 133.10 crore, which is just half a crore shy of matching “Toilet: Ek Prem Katha’s” 133.60 crore.  “Judwaa 2” is still in position three on the top ten list, but will undoubtedly take position two by Thursday.  But will it be strong enough over a third week-day stretch to earn the 4.5 crore it would need for the number one spot before Aamir Khan’sSecret Superstar” releases on Thursday?  It would need to average 1.47 crore per day to make it.  Average per day last week was 2.4, so it’s not impossible.  However, many may be saving their movie money this week not only for Aamir’s new film, but also for “Golmaal Again“, which releases on Friday.  At this point, it’s really uncertain if “Judwaa 2” will reach the top spot in time.
However, in international news, “Judwaa 2” has crossed 200 crore in global collections!

There are no reports this morning on opening weekend collections for either movie released on Friday.

* 1 crore = 10,000,000 rupees

 

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A GENTLEMAN

Released august 25, 2017.  Written by Raj Nidimoru, Krishna D.K., and Sita Menon.  Directed by Raj Nidimoru and Krishna D.K.  Starring Sidharth Malhotra, Jacqueline Fernandez, Sunil Shetty, Darshan Kumar, and Hussain Dalal.
Gaurav (Malhotra) is a mild-mannered businessman with dreams of a big house and a family in the suburbs of Miami.  His sites are set on pretty co-worker, Kavya (Fernandez), but she’s not so sure about settling down with the boring boy next door.  Rishi (Malhotra) is a Mumbai-based operative in a black ops unit with a secret. When their worlds collide, both love and national security are on the line.

In a word, this movie was…impressive!  The directors, stunt crew, and special effects staff on this film should be heartily congratulated for the extra miles they went in choreographing, directing, and editing the action sequences.  With amazing attention to detail, everything was clean, hard-hitting, and impacting, with extra flair that kept everything exciting without crossing the line into excessive or cheesy.  From the moment you see the NSE leader’s physical reaction to being shot, you just know that a crack team is on the job!  It was brilliant, with just the right amount of style.
The same could be said about the approach to humor.  In a story like this, humor can easily get away and become cheesy.  In this movie, however, it was sprinkled in with as much care for balance as a master chef would use when blending spices.  There was just so much that the behind-the-scenes crew did absolutely right in the crafting of this movie.
The writing must also be applauded.  The overall plot may not have been anything new, but the sophistication of the scene-to-scene plotting was outstanding!  With visuals alone, they conveyed so much intelligence, where lesser writers would have resorted to exposition in dialog.  A great example is the scene in which Malhotra’s character arrived at his hideout to find the key felt funny in the lock.  With no words spoken, the next few moments were just the character testing the door and silently seeking for the source of the tampering.  The entire film enjoyed this level of intelligent writing and scene construction.  All the tech and tactical decisions were also intellegently incorporated.
But then there were the acting performances.  Sidharth Malhotra was stone-cold perfect.  Not only did he look great, holding his own in the action scenes, but his performance throughout the film was spot on.  He adeptly navigated all the humor with just the right volume to elicit maximum laughter without going overboard.  The best humor is that in which the characters remain serious, leaving the audience to laugh at the situation.  The scene in the bar is a scream!  His acting craft simply had no blemish throughout the entire run time of the film.
Jacqueline Fernandez also did a great job as Kavya, even though the story didn’t allow as much development for her character as it did for Sidharth Malhotra.  Still, as the girl on the side, she supported the lead well; providing a quirky but honest reason for Gaurav to care.

This film turned out to be 100% better than I expected from the trailer.  The songs were fun, the directing and cinematography were masterful, and the acting was top shelf.  Though the story wasn’t new, but all the details, little touches, and finesse with which the story is delivered in “A Gentleman” makes it definitely stand out in the crowd.
Availability for Indian films online changes regularly.  Check for this movie on Netflix, Amazon Video, ErosNow.com, and einthusan.com.  Sometimes, films can also be found on YouTube with English subtitles.

TRAILER

For more great movie reviews, visit our Movie Review Quicklinks page.

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BOLLYWOOD BOX OFFICE NEWS – OCTOBER 13, 2017

Releasing today:

Ishq Ka Manjan (comedy):  “A crime syndicate involved with human trafficking is depicted in detail. A love story turns into a revenge story when the protagonist’s sister is kidnapped. The story also focuses on several sociopolitical angles attached to he functioning of human trafficking syndicate across the country.”

Ranchi Diaries (thriller):  “An aspiring model, her friends and her godfather try to make it big in the small town of Ranchi.”  TRAILER

Neither of today’s releases will be shown in America.  Coming the week before two major releases, it’s also expected that neither of today’s releases will make much of a showing at the box office.  Though “Ishq Ka Manjan” has a bigger expectation of footfalls bases on pre-release surveys, “Ranchi Diaries” just may end up the front runner on Monday due to a niche audience for thriller films.

Previous releases:

Saif Ali Khan’s “Chef” has all but been forgotten at the box office.  There are no final figures reported this morning, but most projections indicate it isn’t much more than five *crore.  In addition to being criticized for copying the Hollywood version of the film – even though it made no effort to hide the fact that it was an official remake – reviews were negative.  it seems like the producers and the director weren’t able to make it feel like a solid project.

Meanwhile, “Judwaa 2” continued to collect well over its second weekday stretch.  On Monday, we predicted it could collect 10 crore, and the 4-day collection came in at 9.66!  The lifetime total now stands at Rs. 125.84 crore!  This is good enough for position four on the year’s top ten.  Since Monday, it has surpassed collections for “Badrinath ki Dulhania” (116.80 c.), “Jolly LLB 2” (117.00 c.), and “Tubelight” (121.25 c.).  Going into its third weekend, it’ll have its sites set on “Kaabil” (126.85 c.), but then it’ll have to work a lot harder to overtake “Toilet: Ek Prem Katha“, at position two with Rs. 133.60 crore.  It has absolutely no competition releasing today, so a third weekend could bring in another eight to ten crore, factoring in natural decline percentages.  That could mean a total of 135 on Monday.  If it manages that much, and can get at least one crore per day out of its third weekday stretch, it could very well be looking at the number one spot on the top ten for 2017!
At least, temporarily.  At the end of “Judwaa 2’s” third week, it will have to contend with not one, but two A-list releases.  It may reach number one, but bigger boys on the block are likely to overtake it by the end of the year.

* 1 crore = 10,000,000 rupees

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BOLLYWOOD BOX OFFICE NEWS – OCTOBER 9, 2017

Saif Ali Khan’s “Chef” had a poor opening weekend, collecting only 4 *crore in three days.  However, it is most definitely the front runner among Friday’s releases.  “Tu Hai Mera Sunday” collected only 0.10 crore.  For the remaining six movies, there are no reports at all  on opening weekend figures for any of them.   With such a beginning, it already looks like “Chef” will be 2017’s newest flop.  It hasn’t even scratched the surface of its 30 crore budget.

Meanwhile, “Judwaa 2” not only crossed the 100 crore mark over its second weekend, it has come within a day’s-worth of collections from moving up two more spots on the top ten list.  Still in position seven from Friday, the total is now Rs. 116.18 crore!  That means it’s just one crore away from surpassing “Badrinath ki Dulhania” (116.80 c.) and “Jolly LLB 2” (117.00 c.) to take position five on the years top ten!  There’s no reason to expect it not to make that happen by the end of today.
But does it have a chance at number one?  It will need another 23 crore to reach the top spot.  Second weekend did yield the numbers predicted on Friday, so if second week-day stretch trends hold true, it can earn another 10 crore over the next four days, leaving it only 13 crore short of number one, going into a third weekend.

* 1 crore = 10,000,000 rupees

 

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MUBARAKAN

Released July 28, 2017.  Written by Rupinder Chahal, Balwinder Singh Janjua, and Rajesh Chawla.  Directed by Anees Bazmee.  Starring Anil Kapoor, Arjun Kapoor, Ratna Pathak Shah, Pavan Malhotra, Ileana D’Cruz, Neha Sharma, and Athiya Shetty.
This movie is meant to be a crazy, madcap comedy about twin brothers dealing with having their marriages arranged by an extended family at odds with one another.  To complicate matters, both brothers already have girlfriends they are afraid to mention to the family.  With caper after caper and deceit after deceit, matters whip into a frenzy of misunderstanding and misdirection.

I say “meant to be”, because if there was one thing this film lacked, it was comedy.  Comedy without good framework or cleverness falls flat, almost every time.  Such was the case with “Mubarakan”, which put all of its hopes for laughter in an audience who will laugh at sight gags and slapstick.  I didn’t even chuckle during the entire 156 minutes.
The writing and characters were a big part of what was wrong with this movie.  There were only two genuinely likable characters in the whole thing, but they were minor, with little screen time.  Athiya Shetty’s character, Binkle, and the little sister.  The rest of the cast was filled with characters who suffered from spinelessness, indecision, fear, arrogance, and a willingness to deceive their loved ones.  None of the love stories were satisfying, as neither of the hero characters appeared confident or convicted in their love.  Have madcap comedy, yes…but comedy with substance is better than empty comedy with nothing more to go on than people’s unwillingness to have a straightforward conversation with one another.
The songs were okay, but the movie as a whole was nothing more than ordinary.  If you like laughing at family dysfunction for dysfunction sake, go ahead and give it a try.  It’s no better or worse than other comedies that have done the same.  However, if you want more from your comedies, or indeed, your films, you may find “Mubarakan” not to your liking.

Availability for Indian films online changes regularly.  Check for this movie on Netflix, Amazon Video, ErosNow.com, and einthusan.com.  Sometimes, films can also be found on YouTube with English subtitles.

TRAILER

For more great movie reviews, visit our Movie Review Quicklinks page.

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BOLLYWOOD BOX OFFICE NEWS – OCTOBER 6, 2017

Releasing today:

Chef (comedy): Saif Ali Khan.  “The Hindi adaptation of Jon Favreau’s 2014 Hollywood movie by the same name, Chef is a unique tale of Roshan Kalra’s journey to find out his true priorities and source of happiness. It’s a story of food, love, family, togetherness, and that of a father’s rediscovery of the bond with his son.
This film is showing at 44 theaters across America.  Visit this link to check for a theater and showtime near you.

Tu Hai Mera Sunday (comedy/drama):  “Five friends struggle to find a place to play football in Mumbai.”  TRAILER
This film is showing at 14 theaters across America.  Visit this link to check for a theater and showtime near you.

Raktdhar (drama):  “Based on actual events, Shakti Kapoor plays a eunuch to avenge the death of a fellow eunuch who is oppressed by society.  She is raped, and the injuries cause her death. Shakti avenges the death by changing the system and entering politics;  eventually becoming the Chief Minister of the state.”  TRAILER

Babuji Ek Ticket Bambai (drama):  “The dehumanising situation that the commercially sexually exploited women (CSEW) face in India.  The film focuses on a girl from Bedhiya community from the hinterlands of central India. Their culture is singing and dancing. Their community is matriarchal and the story is about three generations of a family where the youngest girl Madhu rebels to change the age old tradition through education. But despite her progressive attitude she falls prey to the socio – police – politicon nexus she is married off to Rajjan, a boy from the same village who has intense crush for her from the beginning.”  TRAILER

Muavza – Zameen Ka Paisa (comedy):  “A rib tickling, super sarcastic, unique story of razor sharp wit focusing on the lives of Nouveau riche of New Delhi. The story revolves around the lifestyles, before and after, their identity crises and their raw approach to everything.”  TRAILER

Ishq Ka Manjan (comedy):  “A crime syndicate involved with human trafficking is depicted in detail.  At the core is a love story involving the protagonist. The story also comprises of several sociopolitical angles attached to he functioning of human trafficking syndicate across the country. The moment of anagnorisis for the protagonist is when his lover’s sister is kidnapped by mafia henchmen.”  TRAILER

2016 The End (comedy):  “Takes us into the lives of four wacko friends, each of whom have their own take in life. Panic sets in when they read about doomsday coming in seven days and they set off fulfilling their ‘last unfulfilled wishes’. Here on, it’s one laugh riot to the other.”  TRAILER

Call for Fun (comedy):  “An edgy, coming of age laughathon revolving around the escapades of a young boy who takes over the reins of his father’s business and faces a vortex of misadventures – mafia threats to client losses.”  TRAILER

Today’s massive batch release is not expected to make many waves at the box office, and should not affect the ongoing collections of the current hit film.  Because it’s a remake of an American film, starring a big-name actor, “Chef’ will undoubtedly be the front runner on Monday.   It is directed by Raja Menon, who also directed the amazing hit, “Airlift” in 2016.  It will certainly be a critically excellent film, but will it be a commercially successful one?  The question reamains…how much can this movie possibly earn when in the shadow of a blockbuster, and lost in a batch release?  The next three days will tell.

Previous releases:

Judwaa 2” is set to become the seventh Bollywood film of the year to cross 100 *crore!!  With opening week collections of Rs. 98.08 crore, it will most assuredly cross that mark today.  It currently holds position seven on the top ten list as it enters its second weekend.  The normal drop for a high opener like this is around 70% from first weekend to second, so it could possibly earn another 17 crore over the next three days.  If it does, it could overtake position six on Monday.  It just all depends on how much today’s eight new films affect the footfalls.
After bringing in a massive 18 crore on the holiday Monday, daily collections dropped steadily throughout the week, following normal box office decline trends.  It earned 8.05 crore on Tuesday, 6.72 on Wednesday, and 6.06 on Thursday.
This is Varun Dhawan’s second big hit of the year, with “Badrinath ki Dulhania” crossing the 100-crore mark in March.   How much higher in the top ten will this movie climb?  It has another two weeks with little competition, and so it has the potential.  So far this year, the bar in the top ten is not set very high.   The number one film right now is “Raees” with 139 crore.  “J2” only needs 40 crore more to challenge that number one spot!  That’s less than half its opening week collections.  If it doesn’t crash, earning half more the opening week collections is a trend well within the parameters of most high-earning movies.  As for opening week global collections, it has already crossed the 100 crore mark and is sitting at right around 134 crore.

* 1 crore = 10,000,000 rupees

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QAIDI BAND

Released August 25, 2017.  Written by Habib Faisal and Sanjay Sharma.  Directed by Habib Faisal.  Starring Aadar Jain, Anya Singh, Mikhail Yawalkar, Peter Muxka Manuel, and Prince Parvinder Singh.
This is a film that sheds light on one of the darker sides of the judicial system.  When someone is arrested and has not been granted bail – or indeed cannot pay bail – then they must remain in custody until their trials are completed.  They are housed with the other convicted criminals in India’s prisons, waiting for hearings that would sometimes take years to happen in the painfully slow system.  They are called “under-trials”, and do not even get the same rights as regular prisoners. Famously, one man remained an under-trial for over 40 years before his hearing finally took place and he was acquitted.

In this film, a group of under-trials was recruited within the prison to perform an Independence Day song for a visiting dignitary, as well as the press.  It allowed a few members from both the men’s and women’s facilities to mingle and become friends.  Their song was a hit, and quickly made them famous in the outside world.
A prospective politician then approaches the prison warden and urges him to keep the group singing.  His plan was to use them to win the election on the youth vote, so of course, any attempt to reach their hearings and be released must be stopped.  Amidst their personal stories, the group tries their best to win freedom not only for themselves, but for all under-trials rotting in prison, waiting for their miracle hearing date.
This film had excellent subject matter, focusing on the under-trial problem in India.  It also had some fantastic music, with significant contributions from the well-loved singer, Arijit Singh.  The acting performances were also very good, with no poor performances to blemish the whole.  The one thing the film lacked, however, was grip.  There was nothing wrong with the story.  It just could have done a better job in the directing department, creating scenes with more impact.  Scenes that would make anyone want to watch the film again and again.  This movie is definitely worth watching once, but it didn’t inspire me to want to watch again.  It did inspire me, however, to download a few songs.
If you like movies about social issues, and if you like great music, then definitely watch this movie.  It may not have been great, but it was very good.

Availability for Indian films online changes regularly.  Check for this movie on Netflix, Amazon Video, ErosNow.com, and einthusan.com.  Sometimes, films can also be found on YouTube with English subtitles.

TRAILER

For more great movie reviews, visit our Movie Review Quicklinks page.

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BOLLYWOOD BOX OFFICE NEWS – OCTOBER 02, 2017

Judwaa 2” has collected the fourth highest-grossing opening weekend (so far) of 2017!  With Rs. 59.25 crore in three days alone, it is already the 11th highest-grossing film of the year.  With just another 5.10 crore – which it should easily manage by end of day, it will be in position eight on the top ten list.
This film showed amazing growth over the three day weekend.  on Friday, it collected 16.10 crore.  Saturday, it was 20.55, and on Sunday, a massive 22.60 crore!  Today is a holiday in India, and so “Judwaa 2” has one more day on which to rack up opening weekend collection numbers.  If it’s 3-day trend continues today, and it collects 2 crore more than yesterday, it could even surpass the collections of “Baadshaho” to overtake position seven with 79 crore or better.  If it can manage this kind of number by tomorrow, it would be well on its way to becoming the year’s next 100+ crore film, which would be a first for Varun Dhawan in a lead role.  It would also mean the film will have recovered it’s entire 75 crore budget in four days, alone!
It would also be the seventh film in the 100 crore club for 2017, putting this year just one more 100-crore film away from tying years 2013 and 2016 in position two on the list of years with the highest number of 100+ crore films.   To break the record, not only would “Judwaa 2” have to cross 100 crore, but two more films must also manage it.
Still to come before December 30 is Aamir Khan’s newest, as well as another epic history in the fashion of “Bajirao Mastani“, starring the same actors from that film.  There’s also “Golmaal Again” and “Tiger Zinda Hai“!  In the end, 2017 – the failure year – may just break the record for number of 100+ crore films!

There are no reports this morning for either of “Judwa 2’s” release-date mates.

Over its second weekend, “Newton” collected 4.32 crore, which has given it a grand domestic collection so far of Rs. 16.15 crore!  It has officially exceeded its 15-crore budget and is now on its way to being declared a hit!  In a year that has had so many disappointments, “Newton” is a welcome success.  The only question now is how much more can it earn in its lifetime at the box office?  Will it cross 20 crore?  The coming week will tell.

* 1 crore = 10,000,000 rupees

 

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BOLLYWOOD BOX OFFICE NEWS – SEPTEMBER 29, 2017

Releasing today:

Judwaa 2 (comedy): Varun Dhawan.  “Prem and Raja are twin brothers who are seperated at birth but are uniquely connected to eachother via their reflexes. They reunite as adults and set out to take down the underground smuggling world.
This film is showing at 150 theaters across America.  Visit this link to check for a theater and showtime near you.

ISIS: Enemies of Humanity (action):  “Exposes the Commanders of an ISIS camp , who Indoctrinate the youth for acts of violence.”  TRAILER

CRD (drama):  “Set in the world of College Theatre, CRD probes fascism and fierce competition in arts.”  TRAILER

Of today’s releases, “Judwaa 2” will most definitely emerge as the front-runner on Monday.  The big question on everyone’s mind, however, is if it will earn enough to indicate a successful final quarter at the box office…or will it be yet another flop in a year that has already experienced far too many would-be blockbuster failures?
In 1997, the original “Judwaa” was the seventh highest-grossing film of the year.  Will the sequel measure up?  It will need at least 80 *crore to make position seven on the current list for 2017.  Made on a budget of 75 crore, it also needs 80 crore to recover initial investments.

Previous releases:

At the end of opening week, “Newton” has pulled ahead of its release-date mates, and is now the front-runner with Rs. 11.83 crore. If it can carry a little more momentum over a second weekend, it has every chance of recovering its 15 crore budget. This will be extremely likely, as word of mouth and great reviews increased footfalls over the first week-day stretch.  Also, it will not be in direct competition with today’s comedy release.

Bhoomi” has fallen a little behind.  Though final numbers are not in, most reports estimate this movie’s opening week figure to be just over 10 crore.  The film is already being called a disaster, as it hasn’t even come close to recovering half of its 30-crore budget.  It’s not expected to earn much more over a second week, and may top out around 12 – 13 crore.

Final numbers for “Haseena Parkar” are also still outstanding, but like “Bhoomi“, reports this morning are estimating it also ended its first week right around 10 crore.  Most of what was said about “Bhoomi” can also be said about this film.  It’s a disaster, and is not expected to earn much more.  However, it will likely top out around 11 – 12 crore by the end.

* 1 crore = 10,000,000 rupees

 

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BOLLYWOOD BOX OFFICE NEWS – SEPTEMBER 25, 2017

Bhoomi” emerged as the front runner among Friday’s releases, collecting a total of Rs. 7.48 *crore over opening weekend.  Not good enough, however, to be considered great.  This is only the 30th highest -grossing opening weekend (so far) of 2017.  With only a week to go before the big films of the season begin hitting the screens, “Bhoomi” may not have the time or momentum to recover its 30-crore budget.

Coming in at a close second was “Newton“, with Rs. 6.90 crore.
This film has not only received excellent reviews, it has already won awards, as well as shining mentions in such publications as The Huffington Post.  It has even been selected as India’s official entry for the 90th Academy Awards!  And finally, but certainly not the least of its achievements: “Newton” is the first movie ever to have received a grant of 1 crore from the Central Government. Despite all this, however, it will need to maintain momentum for at least two weeks for any hope of recovering its 15-crore budget at the domestic box office.  With all the critical power supporting it…it just might make it.

Third at the box office this weekend was “Haseena Parkar“, with Rs. 6.10 crore.  Made on a budget of 25 crore, it’s safe even this early to predict it will be the next in a long list of flops for 2017. Film budgets are getting bigger, which is making it more and more difficult to not have a flop film.
There are no reports this morning on opening weekend collections for “Umeed“, “The Final Exit“, or “J.D.”

This weekend was unlike many others with batch releases.  Usually, there is one high-earner, while all the rest come in at under 1 crore.  Even though none of these films earned very high at all, the fact that three films had reportable earnings of over five crore makes it a very special batch weekend, indeed.

There are also no further reports this morning on collections for “Simran“, “Lucknow Central“, “Shubh Mangal Saavdhan“, or “Baadshaho“.

* 1 crore = 10,000,000 rupees

 

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