Tag Archives: Pygmalion

Natsamrat (2016)

Natsamrat review

written by Souranath Banerjee

Marathi Cinema and Nana Patekar both at their best form.

My Ratings: 4.2/5.

Maharashtra is one of the very few states which has managed to enrich the tradition of theatre in India through all these decades of Natsamrat-poster2our ever-increasing love for Cinema.

Then again, the accessibility, the flow of money, the immense popularity/fame and the ability to create the impossible – all being in favor of Cinema, could theatre ever compete with the popularity of a film?

Probably not, but keeping aside the Theatre Vs Cinema debate for another time, let’s acknowledge the fact that screenplays which are essentially based on significant dramas have always given birth to films of great quality and popularity!

The play A Streetcar Named Desire by Tennessee Williams was later Natsamrat-poster5made into a popular movie by Elia Kazan by the same name, then the drama Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? by Edward Albee was successfully adopted for the screen by director Mike Nichols, the legendary film Throne of Blood by Akira Kurosawa is a direct adaptation of William Shakespeare’s Macbeth, and George Bernard Shaw‘s ‘Pygmalion’ transformed into My Fair Lady by acclaimed director George Cukor.

All exceptional films built upon extraordinary plays from all across the world!

And recently, reputed Indian film maker Mahesh Manjrekar made a film Natsamrat (language Marathi), adopted from an iconic Marathi play Natsamrat-poster1of the 70s by the same name, written by famous Marathi play-writer Kusumagraj.

Interestingly, this remarkable film is not only special for it’s theatre adaptation but then, Natsamrat itself is a tribute to the grand tradition of Marathi theatre!

An aging theatre artist Ganpat Ramchandra Belwalkar (Nana Patekar), versatile and renowned, takes his leave from the stage and expects to lead a peaceful retired life with his devoted wife and caring children (and their extended family) but soon finds out that with growing age and fading popularity nothing remains the same as expected.

In between the articulate poems and the priceless extracts from many famous plays, the film masterfully brings out the emotional Natsamrat-poster3story of an aged couple who has become a nuisance to their own children, a mere botheration and a reason of embarrassment   in their modern lifestyle.

Then again, the film is also a celebration of friendship, of human relations, bondings, emotions and pure empathy.

But of course, the prime reason to watch Natsamrat is none other than Nana Patekar and his exceptional performance.

Like everybody else, I have been admiring Nana Patekar as a class Natsamrat-poster4actor in many of his earlier films like Ab Tak ChhappanParinda, his recent Hemalkasa and even his over enthusiastic character in Krantiveer but with this role as the ‘Natsamrat’ he has given his lifetime best.

And very well supported by Medha ManjrekarVikram GokhaleMrinmayee Deshpande, Sunil Barve and others, the overall acting standard is superbly maintained.

Great music by Ajit Parab (who also acted in the film) and cinematographers Ajith V. Reddy and V. Ajith Reddy needs a special mention for their camera work.

Natsamrat is a film that not only makes Marathi Cinema proud but it is undoubtedly one of the best Indian films of recent times.

Go watch it, it’s totally worth it.    

Poster courtesy: marathistars.com

Best Hollywood Classic Romantic Films (10+1list)

Best Hollywood Classic Romantic Films

written by Souranath Banerjee

Best Hollywood Classic Romantic Films: Love is in the air! When the blissful heart thumps too loud, the glowing smile doesn’t leave your face and your thoughts are always connected to someone special, don’t you dare deny it – you ARE in Love.

And if not, by the time you have finished watching all these films, i am sure you will be!

Well, here are some of the best Hollywood classic romantic films that are considered as the best love-stories ever told.

Let’s shower some love.

10. Gone with the Wind (1939)

Film trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0dTsfsr6-X8

gone-with-the-wind-poster

Nearly four hours long but it’s totally worth it because of Clark Gable and Vivien Leigh and their brilliant on screen chemistry.

Directed by Victor Fleming (and also George Cukor uncredited), this was the first color film to win the Best Picture Oscar.

Considered to be one of fifteen films that changed American cinema (for the good).

9. Breakfast at Tiffany’s (1961)

Film trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=urQVzgEO_w8

breakfast-at-tiffanys-posterFashion icon and superstar Audrey Hepburn was the highest paid actress at the time, her salary for the film was a whooping $750,000!

George Peppard and her chemistry was remarkable in the film, supported by eternally beautiful songs like the ‘Moon River’.

Based on Truman Capote‘s novel and directed by Blake Edwards, a love story to remember.

8. Singin’ in the Rain (1952)

Film trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KOiIGUg6yLI

singin-in-the-rain-posterGene KellyDonald O’ConnorDebbie Reynolds in one the most famous romantic musical ever!

Directed by Stanley Donen and Gene Kelly, interestingly the script of the film was written after the songs, and so the writers had to generate a plot into which the songs would fit.

In 2007, the American Film Institute ranked this as the #5 Greatest Movie of All Time.

7. It’s a Wonderful Life (1946)

Film trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ewe4lg8zTYA

its-wonderful-life-posterDirector/writer Frank Capra at his best, a film that has the most uncommon script and yet so emotional and romantic.

James Stewart at his career best performance and Donna Reed is amazing as well. 

It was nominated for five academy awards and won none. But that doesn’t make the film any less classic value than it deserves. 

Other romantic films by the same director It Happened One Night (1934) and Mr. Deeds Goes to Town (1936).

6. An American in Paris (1951)

Film trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o2WAMZRCbpU

american-in-paris-posterThis is one such film that makes you nostalgic and long for everything that was once so pure and classic.

Along with Leslie Caron and Oscar Levant, it’s so musical, so romantic and so Gene Kelly

Directed by Vincente Minnelli, there is a 17-minute dance sequence at the end of the film that took a month to shoot. It cost half a million dollars!

Other romantic films by the same director Gigi (1958) and The Bad and the Beautiful (1952).

5. Casablanca (1942)

Film trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BkL9l7qovsE

casablanca-poster1With songs as melodious as ‘As Time Goes By’, with hunky Humphrey Bogart and the ever beautiful Ingrid Bergman – a love story that can’t go wrong. 

Directed by Michael Curtiz, the film has many unique qualities – the ‘The Battle of the Anthems’ scene, the last airport sequence and of course the chemistry between Rick and Ilsa!  

My personal favorite in the list.

Other romantic films by the same director The Adventures of Robin Hood (1938) and White Christmas (1954). 

4. Roman Holiday (1953)

Film trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9GzCG6lpFUw

roman-holiday-posterGregory Peck with Audrey Hepburn in one of the most famous love story ever shot.

The film not only made Audrey Hepburn world famous but also rocketed the sale of Vespa scooter!  

Directed by brilliant William Wylerwho still holds the record of more people nominated to the Oscar sweepstakes for his films than any other director.

Other romantic films by the same director The Best Years of Our Lives (1946) and Funny Girl (1968).

3. An Affair to Remember (1957)

Film trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KFWwFfRvClM

affair-to-remember-posterCary Grant and Deborah Kerr after falling for each other agrees to meet in six months at the Empire State Building. 

Well, lovers proposes and God disposes!

Great script, awesome acting and an emotional ending, director Leo McCarey‘s An Affair to Remember” is a film exclusively for the hard core romantics.  

2.  The Shop Around the Corner (1940)

Film trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xr3nsHRKZJA

The-Shop-Around-the-Corner-PosterMargaret Sullavan and James Stewart hate each other but then of course without realizing that they are falling in love after all.  

Directed by Ernst Lubitsch, this one is a very next-door-kind-of love story, of two very common people with whom the audience can very easily relate to.

Sweet and romantic, with great script and brilliant acting all around.

Other romantic films by the same director Trouble in Paradise (1932) and Ninotchka (1939).

  1. My Fair Lady (1964)

Film trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-mYPZ2C4sOE

my-fair-lady-poster

A movie that was advertised as ‘the most eagerly anticipated production since Gone with the Wind‘.

The film was based on the unique drama Pygmalion by George Bernard Shaw.

Directed by George Cukor, and starring Audrey Hepburn and Rex Harrison – one of the biggest grossing films of the time.

Other romantic films by the same director The Philadelphia Story (1940) and Adam’s Rib (1949).

and now, (The ‘+1′ film is not necessarily the best but certainly the most innovative one. A must watch).

+1. Some Like It Hot (1959)

Film trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rI_lUHOCcbc

some-like-it-hot-posterSuper hot Marilyn Monroe along with Tony Curtis and Jack Lemmon, all together in this one; more of comedy than romance but again one of the all time favorite cinema.

Directed by Billy Wilder, in 2007, the American Film Institute ranked it #22 Greatest Movie of All Time. 

And it was also Voted #1 on the American Film Institute’s list of 100 Funniest Movies.

Other romantic films by the same director A Foreign Affair (1948) and The Apartment (1960).

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Poster courtesy: www.impawards.comhttps://en.wikipedia.org