“DANGAL” BREAKS NEW MILESTONE – 2000 CRORE, WORLD-WIDE!!

VBB last reported on the unprecedented success of Aamir Khan’sDangal” in China on June 2, 2017.  At that time, world-wide collections were at a staggering Rs. 1802 crore!  It was the highest-grossing film in Indian cinema history, and first to cross the 1800 crore mark. On the list of highest-grossing films to ever play on screens in China – including American and Chinese movies – “Dangal” was at number 28.

On the 53rd day since its release, however, VBB is proud to report that “Dangal” has done what no other Indian film has ever done before.
Global collections for this history-making movie have crossed Rs. 2000 crore!!
More than half of this film’s collections have come from China, alone; making that country a very important new market for Indian films.  It has done so well that it is now the 16th highest-grossing film to ever play on Chinese screens!  With collections measured in the Chinese currency of yaun, “Dangal” has earned 1.289 billion, and is only 0.051 billion yaun away from overtaking “Avatar” at position 15!
Only eight American films have done better than “Dangal” in this market, which is extremely significant when weighing the growing power and appeal of Bollywood cinema against Hollywood on the world stage.
When Tollywood’s “Baahubali: The Conclusion” is released in China, it will certainly join “Dangal” in the newly-formed 2000 crore club, as it currently trails just 275 crore behind its Bollywood rival. “Dangal“, however, will forever be the first to have achieved this very prestigious honor.

Aamir and “Dangal” have certainly set the bar very high for Bollywood, going forward.  On the list of highest-grossing Indian films in history, the next highest-grossing (apart from “Baahubali 2) earned only Rs. 792 crore (PK” 2014), world-wide.   No film since “Dangal” has even come close to challenging “PK“, much less the heights of “Dangal“.  However, there is no doubt about the bright future Bollywood films have across the globe.
There will be more films peeking over the walls of Hollywood with a challenging twinkle in their eyes!  Then Hollywood, with its remakes, cheap children’s films, and cinematic universes, will have to scramble to do better.

* 1 crore = 10,000,000 rupees

 

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BOLLYWOOD BOX OFFICE NEWS – JUNE 26, 2017

Although opening weekend for Salman Khan’sTubelight” has placed the film as the sixth highest-grossing film (so far) of 2017 with just the opening weekend…the Rs. 64.77 *crore it earned is very low for this star.  It was very steady each day; earning 21.15 c. on Friday, 21.17 c. on Saturday, and 22.45 c. on Sunday.
Counting from 2011 (nine movies), only “Dabangg 2” collected a lower amount. His previous three films earned over 100 crore in opening weekend, alone.  It’s clear that fans are not as excited about this movie.  It did have its problems, and the collections indicate the movie-going public is ready for Salman to make a change.
Despite all this, with 64.77 crore already in the bank and four weeks of screen life to go, “Tubelight” is certain to be the fifth film of the year to cross 100 crore, and it will be in the top ten at the end of the year.

There are no new reports this morning on updated collections for “Hindi Medium“, so it is not yet known if the persistent hit reached or crossed the 70 crore mark.  This article will be updated once reports are in.

* 1 crore = 10,000,000 rupees

 

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TUBELIGHT

Released June 23, 2017.  Written by Kabir Khan, Parveez Sheikh, and Manurishi Chadha.  Directed by Kabir Khan.  Starring Salman Khan, Sohail Khan, Om Puri, Zhu Zhu, and Matin Rey Tangu, with a cameo appearance by Shahrukh Khan.
This is the story of Laxman (Salman Khan); a developmentally challenged man whose world existed of his younger brother, Bharat (Sohail Khan).  In 1962, war broke out between India and China.  When it did, Bharat answered the call of duty while Laxman was left behind to find courage and belief within himself.
There is a lot to enjoy in this film, but it did have its problems.  Though it touched on issues like ethnic discrimination during national conflicts (a topic significant in today’s world climate), it didn’t focus on them hard enough to give the movie any depth.  The writing was also lazy when it came to the war scenes.  It lacked the intelligence and sophistication that movie audiences expect, these days.  For example, there was the scene when Bharat’s unit was ambushed in what an establishing shot showed was a huge, flat, featureless, and wide-open area.  The entire film seems to have been written with the kind of surface-only treatment seen in productions made for children.  Everything was over-simplified to the point of being unsatisfying.  The songs were child-like, and even the message was a children’s lesson: believe in yourself.
As for performances, Salman Khan actually disappointed.  Laxman’s voice – his innocent and simple way of speaking – was the same as Salman had used in “Prem Ratan Dhan Payo” and “Bajrangi Bjaijaan“.  Both films are too recent for many to be comfortable seeing the same character treatment again in this movie.  The theme of befriending a child is also too recent to be easily enjoyed for a second round.  It seems the movie-going public is ready to see Salman in a power-role again.
Rather than delving deep into the character of a developmentally challenged adult, Salman’s portrayal was cartoonish.  It was much more a grown man acting how he thought a six-year-old may behave in a school play.  It wasn’t the kind of performance one would expect of a big-budget summer blockbuster.  Also, the performance paled in contrast to other developmentally challenged characters played in recent years by other A-list actors.
Was there anything to enjoy about the movie?  Of course there was.  Once you get over expecting sophistication and depth, and once you watch the film through the eyes of a child, there is a lot to enjoy.  There were some amazing scenes and excellent cinematography.  The film did a great job of eliciting laughter, emotion, and tears.   Shahrukh Khan’s cameo appearance was also very enjoyable, and was one of the only scenes of the film to use subtlety.  Shah looked great!

This film is still playing in theaters.

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BOLLYWOOD BOX OFFICE NEWS – JUNE 23, 2017

Releasing today:

Tubelight (drama): Salman Khan.  “Tubelight is the story of a man’s unshakable faith in himself and the love for his family.”
This film is showing at 272 theaters across America.  Visit this link to check for a theater and showtime near you.

Today’s only release is the first of the Summer Blockbusters for 2017!  All bets are off for any other film previously released and still playing.  As always, Salman’s new film will dominate the screens.  It will also certainly be the fifth movie this year to cross 100 *crore. But how high will it climb?  Opening weekend should give us a good idea.

Previous releases:

Bank Chor” had a miserable opening week; collecting only Rs. 7.30 crore. Though this is slightly better than Riteish Deshmukh’s 2015 senseless comedy, “Bangistan” (5.49 c.), it falls short of 2016’s “Great Grand Masti” (13.59 c.).  Deshmukh has done some impressive work, and has great potential.  However, these cheap and un-funny comedies seem to plague his career with failures.
With “Tubelight” releasing today, “Bank Chor” will not likely reach 10 crore.

Meanwhile, “Hindi Medium” is inching closer and closer to the 70 crore mark!  Current collections are Rs. 69 crore.  Going into a sixth weekend, and with an A-List blockbuster releasing today, everyone is holding their breath to see if this persistent hit film will be able to get just one crore more from the movie-going public. Though it currently still holds position five on the year’s top ten list, it will be pushed down to position six on Monday as opening weekend collections for “Tubelight” surpass it.  It also looks like after such an heroic effort, “Hindi Medium” will not be on the top ten list at the end of the year.  There are at least five more films releasing with the potential of earning more than 70 crore.

* 1 crore = 10,000,000 rupees

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BOLLYWOOD BOX OFFICE NEWS – JUNE 19, 2017

Bank Chor” was the definite front runner among Friday’s releases, but with just Rs. 4.34 *crore over the opening weekend, it was still surpassed by the Punjabi release, “Super Singh” (5.75 c.).
Next in line was “Phullu“, which grossed just Rs. 3.11 crore, while there are no reports at all for the collections of “G Kutta Se“.  None of today’s Hindi releases are expected to cross 10 crore.  They have just four days to collect what they will before the next A-list film hits the big screen and dominates the box office.

Over the second weekend, “Raabta” crashed completely and has effectively come to the end of its theatrical run at about 25 crore. “Hindi Medium“, on the other hand, is still going strong over a fifth weekend!  It collected an additional 2 crore, bringing its lifetime total to Rs. 67.01 crore!
At this rate, it has a great chance of crossing the 70 crore mark before the end of its run.  With Salman Khan’sTubelight” releasing on Friday, however, it will be a tough three crore to glean out of the movie-going public.  As we predicted on Friday, however, “Hindi Medium” has earned enough for its profit percentage to be over 200%!  By this accounting, it is the most successful movie so far of 2017.

* 1 crore = 10,000,000 rupees

 

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BOLLYWOOD BOX OFFICE NEWS – JUNE 16, 2017

Releasing today:

Bank Chor (comedy): Riteish Deshmukh and Vivek Oberoi.  “A comic-caper, that tells the story of 3 morons trying to rob a bank who pick the worst day possible when everything that can go wrong, goes wrong and how they’re inadvertently caught in the crossfire.”

Phullu (comedy/drama):  (comedy/drama)  “Phullu is a good for nothing so his mother gets him married thinking that he will become mature after marriage. After marriage, he comes to know about menstruation and how the women of his village use cloth etc. The film is about what he does after he understands their inconveniences.”  TRAILER

G Kutta Se (drama):  “Virender is a young man at home on the streets. He wanders as he pleases through the terrain of his life.  At night he encounters lust in different forms.  He knows that in his world, men are in charge of women’s lives, their bodies and their honour. There is just one limit even Virender is afraid of breaching, with his uncle’s daughter.”  TRAILER

Also releasing today is the Punjabi film, “Super Singh“.  None of today’s movies, however, are being released in America.  It’s not expected that any of them will make much of a show at the box office, but “Bank Chor” should be the front runner on Monday.

Previous Releases:

At the end of its opening, week, “Raabta” has collected only Rs. 24.50 crore.  This is good enough to claim the position of 11th highest grosser (so far) of 2017, but not good enough to break the top ten.  It needs another 0.59 crore to surpass “Commando 2” and take position ten.  It will likely do so over its second weekend, but it’s not expected to do much more. It will not reach the 30 crore mark, and will not be in the top ten at the end of the year.  A disappointing turnout after Sushant Singh Rajput’s “Dhoni” triumph of last year.

Over its fourth week-day stretch, the persistent “Hindi Medium” collected an additional 2.6 crore; bringing its lifetime total to Rs. 65.01 crore!  Made on a budget of just 22 crore, this makes “Hindi Medium” the most successful/ profitable Bollywood movie so far in 2017.  Its profit margin is very near 200%, and will probably reach that by the end.  Can it pull in 5 crore more before “Tubelight” releases on the 23rd?

* 1 crore = 10,000,000 rupees

 

 

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MERI PYAARI BINDU

Released May 12, 2017.  Written by Suprotim Sengupta and directed by Akshay Roy.  Starring Ayushmann Khurrana and Parineeti Chopra.
This was a very different kind of love story.  One for the real world.  One where things don’t work out, for no apparent reason.  One in which there is love, but no happy ending.  There are no morals and no lessons.  There is no guide or advice about how to make the perfect love work.
Though the structure of the movie was clever and inventive…though the cinematography and directing were top shelf…and even though the acting left no room for criticism…this was a very unsatisfying film.  There are movies people see to escape real life and enjoy the fantasy.  There are also movies made for the purpose of relating to those with special problems and situations.  Those movies often make people feel better, knowing they are not alone.  This movie was neither.  Its message?  Though the person you love can completely screw you over, you can still feel happy about it while remaining alone without even the slightest consolation.  And though some of us may be able to relate to that, it does nothing to console or satisfy.
If you like a film about life’s unfairness with no resolution, “Meri Pyaari Bindu” is a very well-crafted movie.  There is very little to fault.  It even had some really nice music!  However, if you want to feel hope or happiness at the end of the film, you may want to give this one a pass.

This movie is available streaming on einthusan.com

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NAAM SHABANA

Released March 31, 2017.  Written by Neeraj Pandey and directed by Shivam Nair.  Starring Tapsee Pannu and Akshay Kumar.
This is a spin off film, inspired by the 2015 hit film, “Baby”.  It’s a prequel tale that answers the question, “who was that female operative that worked with Akshay’s character for part of his mission?
When going back and watching “Baby” after seeing “Naam Shabana”, it was a great set-up.  Shabana (Pannu), in all her actions, facial expressions, and dialogue conveyed neatly that she was a rookie, still finding her feet.  Akshay’s character added to this feeling with how he treated Shabana, as well as how he looked at her: evaluating.  It was the perfect set-up.
But did “Naam Shabana” deliver on that set up?  Not as well as we could have hoped.  Her back story was a lazy, gender-reversed tale that has been done so many times it was actually tiring to watch.  Young woman with a family tragedy in the past has an attitude and is prone to aggression.  Meets boy who is so in love with her that he breaks her hard shell and makes her begin to hope for happiness.  He even delivered the typical female line “I feel safe with you.”  An altercation with a bunch of rowdies leads to a new tragedy, which sets the heroine on the path of revenge.
Once that part was over, the film did a better job with Shabana’s recruitment, training, and field work.  The director was careful to not make her an immediately-perfect and powerful agent.  She had talent, but definitely maintained the confidence and competence level of a rookie.
As for the plot: it lacked the energy, intrigue, and complexity of the plot from the first film.  In the end, Shabana herself wasn’t very interesting, and neither was the plot.  Still, there were a few good action scenes.
Aklshay Kumar, Anupam Kher, Danny Denzongpa, and Murli Sharma all reprise their roles from “Baby” in this film.  But ultimately, it’s the personal journey a troubled young woman.  Unfortunately, it lacked the kind of depth that has made other personal journey stories a success.

This movie is available streaming on einthusan.com

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PHILLAURI

Released March 24, 2017.  Written by Anvita Dutt and directed by Anshai Lal.  Starring Anushka Sharma, Diljit Dosanjh, Suraj Sharma, and Mehreen Pirzada.
When Kanan (S. Sharma) and Anu (Pirzada) are due to be married, superstition gets the better of the family.  They insist that Kanan marry a tree before marrying Anu.  Already struggling with misgivings, cold feet, and disdain for his family’s silly beliefs, Kanan agrees to the ceremony.  Matters complicate tenfold, however, when the spirit of a woman who’d been attached to the tree follows him home.
This is also the story of that spirit, Shashi (A. Sharma), and how she came to end her life at the tree after thinking her love had abandoned her.
The concept and mechanics of this story are really good.  How the spirit became attached to the tree and then to Kanan was completely sensible…for fantasy.  The circumstances surrounding why Shashi’s lover never came to meet her were brilliant and moving.  Though the special effects may not have been big-budget, cutting edge, they were still very nice for a film of this type.  The final scenes were beautiful, and obviously the bulk of the effects budget.
Just a couple problems.  The anchor story of this film, of course, is the flash-back story of Shashi and her lover, Phillauri (Dosanjh).  However, they could have given more substance to the modern day story so that it would have seem less like a backdrop and more like a companion tale.  One of the biggest reasons the Kanan/Anu story seemed so inconsequential is that it was based on a guy freaking out when it came time to commit.  This is an easy and typical go-to plot that doesn’t require much depth, so that part of the story was more of a setting for the Shashi/Phillauri story than a story on its own.
Secondly, the character of Kanan was actually off-putting.  He was wishy-washy, indecisive, whiny, and spineless.  One of the things we like best here at VBB is how Bollywood movies are filled with strong and confident males.  Kanan’s character was a significant letdown, and left us wondering why Anu loved him so much in the first place.  He was also not consistent with the tone of the rest of the film.  Even in the end, after having learned his lesson about committing to love, he still seemed like he was ready to turn and run as fast as he could.
But if you can get past Karan, the rest of the film is really nice.  Anushka Sharma and Diljit Dosanjh deliver magnificent performances in their roles.

This movie is available streaming on einthusan.com

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BOLLYWOOD BOX OFFICE NEWS – JUNE 12, 2017

Raabta” did emerge as the front runner among Friday’s releases.  With Rs. 15.93 *crore earned over opening weekend, “Raabta” far exceeded the next highest-release-date-mate grosser, “Behen Hogi Teri” (1.28 c.) However, “Raabta’s” 15.93 crore is not enough to challenge the year’s more successful films.  It earned only the eighth highest-grossing opening weekend of the year (so far).  It really needs a strong opening week to have any hope of – even temporarily – entering the top ten.

Meanwhile, “Hindi Medium” is still on a roll!  It earned an additional 6.2 crore over its fourth weekend!  With Rs. 62.41 crore in collections now, it not only crossed the 60 crore mark, but surpassed “Half Girlfriend” (60.06 c.) to become the fifth highest-grossing movie (so far) of 2017!  It’s also the highest grossing film of the year so far that hasn’t crossed 100 crore.  Will it have enough power over a fourth week and a fifth weekend to cross the 70 crore mark?  The next seven days will tell!

So, here we are in June, and there hasn’t been a 100-crore Bollywood film since March.  In the first three months of the year, there were four films to cross 100 crore.  But the best the second three months have been able to do is around 60 crore.  When will the next big film come along?
It’s right around the corner, actually.  Salman Khan is almost always a bank bet, and his next movie, “Tubelight” releases on June 23rd. Together again with brother Sohail Khan, and with an anticipated cameo from Shahrukh Khan, many will turn out and make this film the next to cross 100 crore.

* 1 crore = 10,000,000 rupees

 

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