Proof (2005)

It’s a beautiful mystery film with a few twists. Gwyneth Paltrow’s performance is what seals it as a wonderful film. She irritates you with her emotionally repellant hermit personality. You start to hate her before you start to love her. Jake Gyllenhaal(named hal in this film!), Hope Davis and Anthony Hopkins have also done a brilliant job. The film is about a mathematical proof and about a genius who has to cope with immense emotional stress and trauma. But you don’t have to like Math to like this film–if you like mystery–you might like watching this film too. The film is based on a Pulitzer prize winning story.

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byomkesh (1)

Detective Byomkesh Bakshi (2015)

I had a difficult time watching the 2015 film Detective Byomkesh Bakshi. I had enjoyed TV series Byomkesh Bakshi as a young lad.  In fact, it was way before I had heard about Sherlock Holmes. I read my first Sherlock Holmes story later in school. So up until then Byomkesh Bakshi was my favorite and only sleuth. I’ve always liked mystery and detective stories. Rajit Kapoor played the Byomkesh Bakshi in the TV series which was telecast in 90s on Doordarshan–India’s national TV channel. Rajit Kapoor didn’t have a great charisma but he seemed like a Bengali intellectual. He had set the bar high enough for the role of Byomkesh Bakshi. The greatest Indian sleuth was created in the Bengali literature by Sharadindu Bandyopadhyay. It was inspired by Sherlock Holmes of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Even his methods of investigation which rely on small details, sometimes on chemistry and other skills aren’t much different from those of Holmes’.

Dr Anukul Guha/Neeraj Kabi

When I heard about the new movie–which was going to be released in 2015–I didn’t have high expectations–still, I had certain expectations. I am disappointed to say that this film let me completely down. The lead was not a great choice for the role it seems. He has no charisma as a lead who is supposed to be a genius. Further he doesn’t really seem like an intellectual or geek which Byomkesh Bakshi is. Twists in most of the movie are too petty and uninteresting. I wasn’t willing to watch the film after interval but somehow I completed it. My assessment would have remained incomplete had I not finished watching the film. Now it’s complete. It’s not that I consider this a good movie now. No, I won’t recommend this even to an enemy–though I have none . I usually don’t spend much time talking about a film I didn’t like–because, first I wasted time watching it–then to waste time again dissecting it-is futile.

But this film also has a positive aspect–it’s the character of its main villain which is played by Neeraj Kabi. He’s the main attraction in this film. His voice, his character and presence have weight–more weight than that of Bakshi’s. But the problem is–he has very little screen time–he’s a newcomer–but I think he’s going to be an artist to look for in days to come. So the first and last few scenes are the only attraction in this film, in my humble opinion. This completes my review of  the film.

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Hello John, I moustache you a question, Watson your face? Oh and I have another one, But I think I’m gonna shave it for later…—–Anonymous on Youtube.

Keane (2004)

Spoilers Alert!

Keane is a wonderful mystery thriller. Written and directed by Lodge Kerrigan, this movie has almost everything a tight mystery thriller should have. The plot is original and keeps you hooked. The story heavily relies on a single character–a schizophrenic man–William Keane in his 30s who’s supposedly lost his daughter. It has been played brilliantly by Damian Lewis. His performance is what keeps you ever interested in the story. 

The mystery of the story is very deep. The abrupt climax leaves you wondering–was he going to kidnap that little girl or was he going to leave her back to her mother? Did he ever really have a daughter or it was all in his imagination? Did he actually kidnap another girl and lost her on railway station? Is that why he was trying to recreate the emotions he had with another girl he had abducted and lost? Does this time he realize how bad an act that was and it makes him cry –so he decides to not to keep going along with his plan any further?

Such many questions are there when this movie ends. This climax is so open for the interpretation. Many movies have such open-ended climax–which makes them mysteries in a real sense–but this film in particular doesn’t just rely only on its climax. It has a wonderfully paced thriller based on a wonderful performance by Damian Lewis.

Trivia tells you that this film was made just in 32 days for a mere $1 million. It accomplishes so much with such a small budget testifying that a profound story and good performances are what really make a film excellent. The direction and cinematography are also good.

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