The Undoing (2020)


Big Little Lies – Season Two (2019)

The stellar team of Reese Witherspoon, Nicole Kidman, Laura Dern, Shailene Woodley, Zoe Kravitz, is back with the addition of the enigmatic Meryl Streep, who plays a delicate character, who is annoying, intrusive yet caring and concerned. It’s a difficult part to play but who better than her to brave it.

The principal cast is persistent on hiding what really happened at the end of Season 1, which plays out as different stresses for their characters. New truths are revealed as they navigate through their complex lives in their sleepy small town.

Excellent performances which culminate in an intense final episode.

Aquaman (2018)

Is what I call a ‘paisa vasool’ (money’s worth) film. It packs in everything, fantasy, wayer worlds, disaster, dinosaurs and a great exploration of how we have destroyed our planet. Jason Momoa doesn’t have much to say, but his towering presence communicates volumes, Nicole Kidman leaves a mark and Patrick Wilson is effective. Vivid special effects make it a ‘wow’ ride!


Big Little Lies (2018)

Big Little Lies: The suspense was killing me. The plot was stifling me. Who did it?! Who was it? So many questions, with edits the speed of a race car, it keeps you guessing. Who is lying? Why are they lying? You will know soon enough. 7 episodes, with multiple story lines, all reach their conclusion and then you can finally breathe! Wonderful casting and immaculate performances by all, ranging from the 6 year old right to the adults. Worthy of a binge watch and all the awards it got.

Lion (2016)

Director Garth Davis takes a beautiful story based on the novel ‘A Long way home’ and turns it into an extraordinary film which simmers slowly, to boil over your emotions and tears as it progresses.

Sunny Pawar, all of 8 years old (playing Saroo at age 5 in the film) is a confident yet unassuming talent, who pulls you into his world with his compelling eyes and indefatigable spirit. Little Saroo helps his brother Guddu so that they may provide some food on the plate. Poverty has been shown with dignity, unlike other Hollywood movies, so has the plight of the downtrodden. Saroo’s inadvertent journey takes him far from his village in a big bad city, where he is quick to escape from danger and senses what’s good or not for him. Kindness takes him to an orphanage and finally to Australia.

A grown Saroo, played effectively by Dev Patel seeks his roots, his home. But how would he find a remote village with an obscure memory of it ? His parents, played by Nicole Kidman and David Wenham are such fine examples of how a father and mother should be. Nicole is caring, confident and is a patient mother while David is casual, strong and a supportive father.

The movie explores themes of family, belonging, parenting, siblings, love, and the bond between mother and child without poking you in the eyes. The emotions flow, muted and discreet, until the final frame, but you don’t feel distraught, rather a renewed belief in humanity ensues.


Secret in their eyes (2015)

When two powerhouse performers like Julia Roberts and Nicole Kidman come together, you expect a good film. On that count and many others, the movie over delivers.

The smartly cut promo prepares you on what to expect. The film on the other hand, throws you off. It’s filled with intense moments and chases, emotional trauma and legal processes, all of which contribute to a wholesome movie experience.

Nicole Kidman shows a side we haven’t seen before. Vulnerable yet tough, she is smart and to the point. One particular scene establishes her as the seasoned and strong actor that she is.

Julia Roberts is perfect. Not a movement or muscle moves in a way which doesn’t magnify her emotions appropriately. She does complete justice to her character and has many scenes which leave you in despair, experiencing her agony.

Chiwetel Ejiofor plays the dependable male lead. He balances both the ladies with his own contribution of tenacity and insight. His ability to not give up ultimately drives the film and audience, to its conclusion. The supporting cast adds to the drama.

Director Billy Ray has made a difficult subject, easy to watch. In the current climate it’s still given the right angle, without prejudice. No surprises there as he is an acclaimed screenplay writer. There were some cuts here but nothing which we couldn’t figure.

A brilliant film with solid performances and deep story telling.


Paddington (2014)

Created using computer generated imagery and animatronics, we have a very realistic bear family who have a learning episode from an English explorer. What ensues is a young bear coming to London in the hopes of finding a home.

Director Paul King has assembled a great English cast with Nicole Kidman playing a svelte villain. Shot in real life depicting sets as if they were animated, it creates a warm feeling where we wonder if our worlds could be magical too.

A children’s film, it has been described as a comedy. It is actually a far more simplistic fare for younger kids who can appreciate the situation and humour. Animated films are increasingly more deep and dark these days but this one has stuck to safe, neutral ground.

A marmalade watch.