08072022-LSTC-01.qxd 7/7/2022 11:59 PM Page 1 c m y b GETTING READY FOR ACTION After making her debut in Samrat Prithviraj, Manushi Chhillar has reportedly signed another big-ticket film. This time it’s an action flick that will be shot in Europe. A source says, “Manushi will now train hard to impress everyone in this project. This will be the third film in her filmography.” TRIBUNE Coming soon Life The comedy-drama Janhit Mein Jaari is set for its digital premiere on July 15 on ZEE5. The film revolves around Manokamna Tripathi, played by Nushrratt Bharuccha, a condom salesgirl. CHANDIGARH | FRIDAY | 8 JULY 2022 Creativity up in smoke? Mona As the Kaali controversy gets murkier with trolls baying for Leena Manimekalai’s blood and the filmmaker defending her stance, artistes give their take on the issue L EENA Manimekalai’s Kaali row got another twist on Thursday morning. The Toronto-based filmmaker posted a I feel it is photograph of two peralright to show sons dressed as Lord mythological Shiva and Goddess Parfigures in different forms of art as vati smoking on a road. long as it is not hurting the For the unversed, the sentiments of people or a particular controversy began last week when the actorcommunity. If imagination and director shared a poster creativity are not crossing the line, that showed a woman we are good. dressed as Goddess Gauri Minocha Kaali and smoking on social media. A flag representing the LGBTQI+ made Hindu and other faith comit to the background. This was munities,” read its statement. for the launch of her film Manimekalai’s tweet accomKaali at the Aga Khan Muse- panying the poster was um for the Rhythms of Cana- removed by Twitter as well. da festival at Toronto. The Meanwhile, the filmmaker poster was called out for hurt- alleged that she, her family ing religious sentiments of the and collaborators have Hindus. Multiple police com- received threats from more plaints were filed in Delhi, than 2,00,000 accounts Mumbai, Lucknow, Bhopal, online. Self restraint versus Ratlam and other places. creative liberty, we ask The Indian High Commis- artistes and filmmakers on sion requested Canadian how to walk this tightrope. authorities to withdraw the poster. The Toronto-based Not at the cost of unrest Aga Khan Museum Award winning filmmaker expressed regret while taking Rahul Mittra says, “Whilst I down the poster. “The muse- am all for creative liberty in um deeply regrets that one of order to show the reality but the 18 short videos from not at the cost of unrest. I Under the Tent and its accom- don’t believe in showing panying social media post unnecessary nudity, engaghave inadvertently caused ing in blasphemy or using offence to members of the cuss words just to evoke con- troversy or hurting religious sentiments. We filmmakers should feel confident about the content we create and it should have the capability of entertaining the audiences without giving it a religious spin.” As for his journey, Mittra adds, “I have steered clear of any such move in my films and condemn disrespectful depiction of Gods in cinema.” However, this is not the first time that such a controversy has happened. Before this Brahmastra, Laxmmi, Tandav, Padmavat, PK and A Suitable Boy – different films and shows have come on the radar for hurting religious sentiments. Why target Gods? In a world ever so sensitive, how does one navigate? “In my view any misrepresenta- Life is a source of inspiration for everything that filmmakers, writers and artists do. And since Gods are such a predominant part of all cultures worldwide, it is absolutely impossible to keep them out Madhureeta Anand tion of Gods is totally unacceptable and why always target Hindu Gods?” asks singer Uvie. “In the name of creativity why target Gods? It means the director is not confident of the art and is depending upon the controversy to gain popularity,” he says. “I feel it is alright to show mythological figures in different forms of art as long as it is not hurting the sentiments of people or a particular community. As long as imagination and creativity are not crossing the line, we are good,” says Gauri Minocha. Merely an image Film director, writer and producer Madhureeta Anand stands for an artiste’s vision. “Life is the source of inspiration for everything that filmmakers, writers and artists do. And since Gods are such a predominant part of all cultures worldwide, it is absolutely impossible to keep them out. In my view any misrepresentation of Gods is totally unacceptable and why always target Hindu Gods? And in the name of creativity why target Gods? It means the director is not confident of the art and is depending upon the controversy to gain popularity. — Uvie Again and again artistes have invoked the image of Jesus and all characters from the Bible in various ways and not all of them reverential. This has, in fact, led to all of us learning about Christianity more than anything else,” she points out. “The fact is that when talking about Gods or Goddesses it is merely their image that they are using to create. So, why should one be offended? It’s not really Kaali there you know. And even raising the point of restraint is antithetical to how art works. Restraint is the last thing anyone should use while creating art otherwise it wouldn’t really be art now would it? Can one imagine Mira Bai sitting and thinking about restraint while talking about MOVIE REVIEW An emotive core, love stealing the thunder, delightful tenor and lightning performances make this fourth solo Thor film worth your time and money THOR: LOVE AND THUNDER Cast: Chris Hemsworth, Christian Bale, Tessa Thompson, Taika Waititi, Russell Crowe and Natalie Portman Director: Taika Waititi Rating: ★★★ Thoroughly entertaining Nonika Singh Ready for D-day Pre-wedding festivities start for Payal Rohatgi with mehndi ceremony Payal Rohatgi and Sangram Singh are set to tie the knot on July 9 and their pre-wedding celebrations have already started. Pictures from Payal’s mehndi function have gone viral. The actress is seen in a pink outfit as she applied mehndi on her hands and feet at the function. Haldi and sangeet ceremonies are also scheduled to take place over the next two days. Payal and Sangram’s wedding will take place in Agra. They will host a reception in Delhi and Mumbai. ‘Sense of desolation...’ Saira Banu on Dilip Kumar’s death anniversary Veteran actor Dilip Kumar left for his heavenly abode on July 7 last year. On his first death anniversary, his wife, actress Saira Banu remembered him with an emotional note. In her note, she said she feels a “sense of desolation” every morning when she wakes up, alone on the bed she shared with her late husband for 55 years. The actress said she buries her face in the pillow. She said, “I turn my face away and bury my face in the pillow and try to go back to sleep… as if by doing so I will open my eyes again and see him sleeping by my side, his pink cheeks glowing in the morning rays of the sun streaming into the room.” In the note Saira Banu said that her late husband was the only perfect man for her, since she fell in love with him at age 12. She called her love story what fairy tales are made of. For every protagonist there is an antagonist, for every saviour a destroyer...so even before the screens are set afire with god of thunder aka Thor, we get to meet his nemesis in the sequel to Thor: Ragnarok. It helps that the villain of the piece Gorr, ahem the God Butcher, is played by none other than gifted Christian Bale as he owns the part and lives it with menacing sharpness and later a touching humanness. Interestingly, Chris Hemsworth as Thor not only shares screen space with Bale but a bunch of stars and superstars. Apart from the Guardians of Galaxy team, there is Russell Crowe and Tessa Thompson and the director Taika Waititi himself as motor-mouth Korg, a Kronan gladiator who befriended Thor. The prologue lets you into what has pushed Gorr on god killing spree. And a back-story fills in the gaps of Thor’s past adventures and misadventure including his obese avatar and transformation back to the hot bodied one with rippling muscles which we get to see more than once. Since, this 29th film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe comes with the tagline love and thunder and since more and more Hollywood films, including the superhero ones are developing an emotional core, you can only expect a solid love angle. So, there you have lovely Natalie Portman as Thor’s love interest Dr Jane Foster from the past making her entry. And what a swashbuckling one it is. But is this fourth solo Thor film a classic Thor adventure as Chris keeps on reminding and reiterating. Well, catchphrases abound for sure. Mirthful one-liners make you chuckle in a steady torrent. The writing by Waititi and Jennifer c m y b Kaytin Robinson also duly tips the hat to other films like Interstellar and actors too as Natalie’s character is initially deliberately (mis)introduced as Jodie Foster. Besides, Russell Crowe as Zeus The king of the Olympians brings many a smile on your face with his fine cameo and some whistle-worthy dialogues. Despite the visual scale, a given in Marvel Cinematic Universe and some scintillating action and cinematography by Barry Baz Idoine (watch out for the way Omnipotence the city of gods is mounted), in this outing of Thor love steals the thunder more than lightning action. The climax heightens the emotive aspect even more so. And the charm of Chris Hemsworth is unwavering. You see him as much as a warm and endearing human as one with superheroic abilities and qualities. Tessa Thompson’s part as Valkyrie has nuances in touch with modern gender just world underlying her alternate sexuality too. Natalie Portman has a meaty part wherein she turns into Lady Thor, no Mighty Thor, as she corrects Gorr who addresses her as the former. Wielding Thor’s epic hammer Mjölnir with precision she not only romances the handsome hunk but matches his warring skills like a true blue warrior of Asgard. Never mind that by profession she is an astrophysicist suffering from cancer stage four. The film, however, does not suffer from any depressive disorder. Light hearted in tenor and feel, even when you are face to face with a black and white realm where Gorr’s powers are intensified and children have been kidnapped, there is a magical feel to this surreal world. And even as the end moves you emphasising how all quest is finally about love and a tragic twist is in the offing, you walk out of theatres with feel-good factor intact and a heartening epilogue with a promise of yet another face off, likely between Thor and Hercules. Yet, another postcredit scene is equally heart-warming adding immensely to the movie watching experience. Krishna as her beloved? However, time and again people have been forced to censor or hide what they actually want to say due to the fear of backlash. This is a loss and extremely sad for the society where this happens,” she puts. Who is Leena Manimekalai? Manimekalai’s Twitter bio reads her as a ‘Poet, Film Maker, MFA (Film) GFAD Fellow - YorkU, Toronto’. Born in Madurai, Tamil Nadu, she started as a filmmaker in 2002 with docu-fiction Mathamma which reportedly deals with the Arundhatiyar community in Mangattucheri, Tamil Nadu. Her subsequent works deal with issues of the marginalised. Sengadal, 2011 talks of Tamil refugees from Sri Lanka. Currently, Manimekalai is finishing her second year of a master’s degree in film at York University in Toronto. Through this uproar, Manimekalai has stood by her stance, “These trolls are after my artistic freedom. If I give away my freedom fearing this mindless rightwing mob mafia, I will give away everyone’s freedom. So, I will keep it, come what may,” she shared a tweet by author Mira Kamdar on Thursday. — With inputs from agencies. FURORE IN FRAMES ■ Khuda Haafiz: Chapter 2- Agni Pariksha’s song Haq Hussain was changed to Junoon Hai after the Shia community raised objections about the lyrics. ■ Ranbir Kapoor and Alia Bhatt’s trilogy film Brahmastra’s trailer sparked a controversy as it shows the hero entering a temple with shoes on. Director Ayan Mukerji clarified on Twitter that Ranbir was entering a Durga Puja pandal and assured shoes are taken off only before the idol not whilst entering it. ■ Tandav, starting Saif Ali Khan, was in the headlines for the wrong reasons as it featured Mohd Zeeshan Ayyub as Lord Shiva mouthing lines about ‘azaadi. The scene from the first episode allegedly provoked communal disharmony. ■ Mira Nair’s directorial, A Suitable Boy, was put to test by The All-India Shia Personal Law Board as they sent a legal notice to makers and Netflix for showing desecration of a tazia and dishonouring it. It was followed by other FIRs alleging love jihad with a Hindu girl kissing a Muslim boy in a temple. Throwing his best punch Ali Fazal takes to wrestling to prep for Mirzapur 3 Ali Fazal has played many iconic roles and one of them is that of Guddu Bhaiya from Mirzapur. As the cast and crew get ready for the highly anticipated third season, Ali is busy with his own prep to bring back his character on screen. The actor is learning the basics of wrestling. The show has always had action as its premise, but the script this time around demands much more of it. Wanting to do his own stunts and action for his role, Ali wants to use this time and this prep to apply to those sequences in the show. According to a source, “Ali Fazal is currently prepping for the action sequences that are a part of the script of this upcoming season. The training is currently underway and he’s been doing this for a few weeks now. The shoot is set to commence soon. Ali Fazal is putting all his efforts into this role and has already started taking basic wrestling lessons for the same.” Meanwhile, Ali Fazal was recently seen in the international murder mystery, Death On The Nile and will soon appear in Vishal Bhardwaj’s Khufiya with Tabu. The actor has another international flick, Kandahar, with Gerard Butler.
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