My 2018 Oscar Predictions

Oscar-2018-PredictionsI just completed my Oscar backlog and guess still have an hour to post my predictions 🙂

1) Best Movie: The Shape of Water

  • Dunkirk is equally good, but The Shape of Water has appeal to wider audience.

2) Best Actor: Gary Oldman for Darkest Hour

  • One of the best portrayal of a real world personality.

3) Best Actress: Frances McDormand for Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

  • No contest here. She was super awesome in her role of a grieving mother who is ready for vengeance.

4) Best Director: Guillermo del Toro for The Shape of Water

  • Remember Pan’s Labyrinth? He is back with equally good concept and equally well executed, but with more universal appeal.

5) Best Supporting Actor:  Sam Rockwell for Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

  • As the movie progressed, it dawned on me how wonderfully he had played his changing character.

6) Best Supporting Actress: Allison Janney for I, Tonya

  • Wonderful portrayal of hard-a** mother. No competition here really.

7) Best Animation Movie: Coco

  • One of the best movies made in last one decade. 

Wind River Movie Review & Film Summary


Movie Plot:

After finding the body of an 18-year-old woman on an American Indian reservation in the frozen wilderness of Wyoming, a divorced federal wildlife officer helps a less experienced FBI agent to solve the mystery of teen’s rape and murder.

Cory Lambert ( Jeremy Renner), is a divorced federal wildlife officer who makes his living by killing predators that prey on the animals of the wilderness of the Indian Reservation in Wyoming. Searching for a mountain lion, he finds a frozen corpse of a young woman who was raped and killed. The woman was the best friend of Cory’s daughter, who had died in similar conditions three years ago.

As a result of this homicide, the F.B.I. sends Jane Banner (Elizabeth Olsen), a relatively less experienced agent, to investigate the case. Cory helps Jane in solving the mystery behind teen’s rape and murder.

The movie builds very well to a well thought climax where the bad guys responsible for the girl’s death come in the open to battle the investigators.

It’s a very well made movie that will keep the viewers on the edge of their seats right from he beginning till the end, with a consistent chill in the spine.

4.5 out of 5 stars – highly recommended.

My 2017 Oscar Predictions


My wife and I find Oscar Awards an exciting occasion. We talk about the great movies that have come out during the last year and discuss our take at the things that stand out.

It’s not as hard this year to predict as it was the last year or the one before. That’s because the number of good movies that came out in the past was much higher than this year.

Best Picture: La La Land

I loved Hacksaw Ridge, Monnlight & Arrival too. I find that La La Land outshines the rest for doing a tremendous job across all the aspects of movie-making.


Best Actor: Denzel Washington, for Fences

I loved Casey Affleck in Manchester by the Sea. But Denzel, in my view, has given a performance that will be hard to forget for years.


Best Actress: Emma Stone, for La La Land

Let’s just say I am super-biased for her :). Jokes apart, Emma Stone has done wonders again! Isabelle Huppert in Elle would have been my choice if Emma wasn’t in the race.


Best Supporting Actor: Mahershala Ali, for Moonlight

Dev Patel has come a long way — but unfortunately, I felt that Lion was a much better movie until we saw Dev Patel.


Best Supporting Actress: Viola Davis, for Fences

If Nicole Kidman (Lion) and Michelle Williams (Manchester by the Sea) did not have such short roles in those movies, my take might have been different. I loved both of them even when their appearances were for small duration.


Best Director: Damien Chazelle, La La Land

Do I need to say anything?


Best Animated Feature Film: Zootopia

The movie is phenominal. A very well made animation. The DMV office scene is going to be remembered for ages. Kubo and The Two Strings & Moana are fantastic too.


Fingers crossed for the awards tomorrow 🙂


Note: All the images used in this post are publicly available images and none is a copyright material.

Movie Review: La La Land


“There is something about this movie—but i am not exactly able to put my finger on it.” As I walked out of the theatre after watching the movie, I couldn’t help but remember the comment one of my colleagues had made a week ago.

He was spot on. Sometimes it’s hard to tell why you like something so much.

Two ambitious artists, two similar yet isolated dreams, two passionate lovers—so what? That’s nothing new.

The experience. That was it.

Damien Chazelle and his crew have done a tremendous job in creating an unforgettable experience for the audience. The overwhelming amount of relatability felt by the audience to the main characters’ motives and very precise dreamlike adventures in every moment to keep the audience relaxed yet excited—were the two main ingredients that made this movie a savory dish.

Emma Stone is surely aging like a fine wine. When you thought she just gave her best performance, she comes up with a better one—truly a genius.

A review of this movie couldn’t possibly be complete without talkign about the end.

So what’s special or controversial about the end?

Was it completely unanticipated? No.

Was it abrupt? Yes.

Did it do good to the movie? Absolutely, yes.

Why so? It’s like a thoroughly marvelous ride that you thought was over until the last few seconds proved you wrong.

Movie Review: Aamir Khan’s Dangal


I am not much of a movie critic–I am merely someone who loves to watch good movies from all across the world and wouldn’t hesitate sharing my honest views 🙂

Currently vacationing in India, I got to watch the movie yesterday night with my family–and my niece, Pranjli Mishra, a terrific singer/ musician, asked me my views on the movie; specifically because she is always keen to hear different opinions and knows that with me the chances are always high of hearing something completely unexpected. I kind of disappointed her this time by not offering much criticism of the movie 🙂

The good movies are basically of two kinds–one that keep you to the edge of the seat at all times and the other that expand the regime of creativity. Aamir Khan’s Dangal belongs to the first category–160 minutes very densely packed with deeply engaging entertainment–sometimes good enough to increase your heartbeat.

The movie is based on the inspiring story of a small-village national wrestling champion, Mahavir Singh Phogat, and his two daughters (Geeta & Babita), and latter’s struggle in becoming two of the best female wrestlers in India. The gorgeous plot is very sublimely supported by refined acting, continuous humor,  touching emotional scenes, and, above all, movie’s ability to keep the audience guessing on what was to be expected next–which isn’t generally a strong point of a large number of movies today.

Aamir Khan is very capable of making movies that could be equally appealing to the audience/ critics of global cinema, yet it seems he loves serving his best dish first to the Indian audience.

India has immense cultural heritage when it comes to story telling by way of acting it out. Nautanki isn’t merely a Hindi phrase describing someone’s exaggerated behavior or reaction–it’s been a fascinating art form that has been as seasoned as any other in the world for over several hundred years. The dancing, singing, and a tinge of surplus-dramatization are the top ingredient of this beloved art form–which, the most Indian movie fans, if not all, seek to savor.

That sort of a cultural thing often comes under a critical lens when assessment of good movies happens at the global stage, but it’s a mistake to assume that a good movie has to have a global appeal–because that’s simply being ignorant to the beautiful diversity we have in this world. We surely mustn’t compare apples to oranges. This is where I think Aamir Khan invariably, and perhaps unknowingly at times, puts this traditional art and the audience he loves ahead of the chances of increased appreciation by the global audience/critiques. Even then, he does manage to strike a real fine balance between continuing the tradition that’s at the heart of Indian movies and making his movies easily accessible to the global audience/ critics.

Given the early signs from the box-office, it’s also very clear that ‘the pull’ between Indian audience and Aamir Khan is nor one sided. It’s admirable to see that both sides have come out of the recent controversy very gracefully showing their amazing appetite for tolerance  😉

A must watch.