Guilty till proven innocent – Talvar – the Movie – Review
Talvar, the movie is based
on the 2008 murder case in Noida which rocked the nation, in which a 14 year
old teenager, Aarushi Talwar was found murdered in her bedroom.

This Bollywood murder
mystery thriller takes us back our memory lanes to the story of the double
murder, in which initially the 45 year old household servant was suspected for
the murder until he was also found murdered and his body discovered in another
part of the same building, the following day.

The movie takes us
subtly through the various aspects of the case that followed in which the originally
the girl’s parents were suspected and then convicted of the murder and later
due to mounting media pressure, the case was handed over to the CBI who
exonerated the parents and charged three other people including a staff at the
Talwar’s clinic and two domestic servants of committing the crime.

Moving across from one
conclusion to other, all of which looks as convincing from one angle as it
looks doubtful from another, Talvar, the movie, tries to present conflicting
and differing accounts of the case, that variously try to depict the parents as
well as the domestic servants as innocent or guilty leaving it to the viewer with
the big question mark of #YouDecide.

Taking the viewers
through a strongly and sturdily fabricated screenplay, Talvar depicts how
politics, professional enmities and rivalries, and even media coverage can
influence and sway the course of justice.

Though the script tries
its best to be downright unprejudiced, impartial and unbiased, towards the
second half of the movie, it does leave the viewers with an iota of doubt that
the filmmaker’s empathies lie with the parents, which perhaps could have been

When Truth has many
faces; Honour Killing, Revenge, Conspiracy, you decide, which one you want to
believe. It’s perhaps, Guilty, till proven innocent.

NB: The plot of the
movie not covered and disclosed at all in this review as requested by the

Directed by: Meghna Gulzar

Produced by: Vineet Jain and Vishal Bhardwaj

Story, Screenplay
and Music by
: Vishal Bhardwaj

Production Company: Junglee Pictures

Irffan Khan – Ashwin Kumar,
Deputy Director, CDI
Tabu – Reema Kumar
Konkona Sen Sharma –
Nutan Tandon
Neeraj Kabi – Ramesh Tandon
Sohum Shah – ACP Vedant
Gajraj Rao – Inspector Dhaniram
Atul Kumar – Paul
Ayesha Parveen – Shruti

You can watch the
official trailer of the movie in this video:

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Maze Runner – The Scorch Trials  – Movie Review
The movie is larger
than life. Set up as a sequel to its predecessor, the Maze Runner, it is much
bigger in size, may it be the length, which stretches to more than two hours
(131 minutes) or it’s cast.

The movie starts of
where the first part ends with the kids being rescued from WCKD, the nefarious
company chasing a cure for an apocalyptic virus. The half dozen survivors from the
maze, seemed to be safe being taken to a seemingly harmless compound, where
they find other teenagers like them already there.

Though Janson tries to
assure them that their nightmare is already over an every night a bunch of them
being rescued, whisked away to an conceivable new home, every enduring one
wishing for their turn to come, lingering at the hope every dinner night though
they are offered food, shelter and good clothes, it becomes pretty obvious that
another nightmare is waiting to be unfolded for the kids led by Thomas, the
quietly courageous leader of the teenagers.

When Thomas and Aris
find out about the nefarious medical experiments that the scientists led by the
doctor Ava Paige are performing on these undoubting kids in the guise of
finding a cure for the plague that ravaged the nation, they along with their
other friends escape the closely guarded compound in pursuit of help and

Escaping from a maze
where they were being used as guinea-pigs in experiments, the kids run from one
post-apocalyptic bunker to another, running across an abandoned mall and
slinking through the sewer system, chased by blind sun-scorched zombies, afflicted
by the plague, trying to survive the heat of the sun by the day and escaping lightning
strikes by the night.

While trying to expand
the Maze Runner mythos, the Director moves through the plot so fast,
that it feels that the characters are running non-stop and
breathless in an indefinite and ambiguous hope of survival.

As far as the
characterisation goes, Thomas looks audacious and spirited throughout
while his buddies Frypan, Newt and others look either impudent or quipping and the only girl character in the group, Teresa
looks gloomy throughout the plot.

Too much of scope
crammed into the movie, we find too many stories woven into it, moving to and
fro from one lore to another, too many characters that we need to remember, and
so many of the backstories to link to that it may become difficult to get
a comprehension on anything by the time the movie progresses on its speed.

Based on the second
novel in James Dashner’s Maze Runner series, this movie clearly reflects an
appealing drabness and bleakness that it may have failed to address.

Director: Wes Ball

Dylan O’Brien – Thomas
Aiden Gillen – Janson
Kaya Scodelario –
Thomas Brodie-Sangster –Newt
Ki Hong Lee – Minho
Giancario Esposito –
Rosa Salazar – Brenda
Jacob Lofland – Aris
Dexter Darden – Frypan
Patricia Clarkson – Ava
Lili Taylor – Mary Cooper

Distributed by: 20th Century Fox

Credits: Star Movies, for the preview invite.
You can watch the
official trailer of the movie here in this video

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Kumbh Mela – Let us picture the pitcher
Kumbh or Kumbha is a Sanskrit word. Also referred to as Kalasha, it can
be translated into English to mean a Pitcher. Mela means a gathering, an occasion
where people churn out in large numbers.

Coincidentally, the Kumbh Mela, the largest recorded gathering of people
in the world ever for a religious purpose, has its origin in the episode of the
Samudra Manthan (to be translated into English as the Churning of the ocean of
milk, the Ksheera Sagara) to obtain the Kumbha (meaning the Urn) containing the Amruta (translated as the nectar of immortality) in one of the most popular medieval
puranas, the Bhagavata Purana, according to the medieval Hindu theology.

So let us try to churn the urn and picture the pitcher a bit more

The story goes thus…

A learned Muni (Sage), Durvasa Muni, hurt egoistically by the Devas (demi-Gods),
puts a Shraap (Curse) on the Devas that they would lose their strength.

The Devas scared out of their wits approach Lord Brahma (the God of
Creation) and Lord Shiva (the God of Destruction), who directs the demi-gods to
Lord Vishnu (the God of upkeep). It may be pertinent to mention here that
together, these three Gods form the Trimurti (the Triumvirate).

As advised, the Devas churn the Ksheera Sagara. With no strength due to
the shraap, they are left with no option but to enter into temporary pact with
the Asuras (the Demons) to work together with the understanding that the bounty
will be shared equally.

As soon as the Kumbha of Amruta is obtained, the Devas and the Asuras start fighting for it, when Lord Vishnu slyly slid away with the Urn of Elixir, but
carelessly spills drops of Amruta at four places on earth, Prayag (now known
as Allahabad), Haridwar, Ujjain and Trumbak (near Nashik).

The Kumbh Mela, celebrated in reverence to this episode, is observed four
times every twelve years, the location rotating between the four places of
alleged drop of the elixir. Incidentally, the four pilgrimage sites are located
on the banks of rivers having religious significance.

Allahabad is located on the confluence of the Ganga, Yamuna and the
mythical river Saraswati, Haridwar on the banks of Ganga, Ujjain on the banks
of Shipra and Nashik on the banks of river Godavari.

With the Kumbh Mela being celebrated once every twelve years at each of
these holy sites, devotees get to witness the mega-event every three years.

The devotees flock to the event with belief that a plunge into the sacred
river, being a ritual bath at a pre-determined time and place, would cleanse their
souls leading to their salvation.

The location of the Kumbh Mela is decided by the position of the Sun,
Moon and Jupiter in the different zodiac signs.

  • When Jupiter is in Aries or Taurus and the Sun and Moon are in Capricorn
    during the Hindu month of Magha (correlating to the Gregorian calendar of January-February),
    the event is held at Allahabad.

  • When Jupiter is in Aquarius and Sun is in Aries during the Hindu month of
    Chaitra (March-April), it is held at Haridwar.

  • When Jupiter is in Leo and Sun is in Aries, or when all three, i.e.
    Jupiter, Sun and Moon are in Libra during the Hindu month of Vaisakha
    (April-May), it is held at Ujjain.

  • When Jupiter and Sun are in Leo during the Hindu month of Bhadraprada
    (August-September), the event is held at Nashik.

The little hardships for the devotees is dwarfed by the belief that it
would free them from the vicious earthly cycle of life and death and transport
them towards a heavenly realm, which knows no pain or suffering, an eternal
life free of sins.

It is said that the power of faith can part a river, or move a mountain.
It is this faith in the minds of the devotees who turn out in millions that
make them endure the hardships that come bundled up just for being a part of
this epic event.


After visiting the Kumbh Mela more than a century back in the year 1895,
Mark Twain had written:

“It is wonderful, the power of faith like that, that can make multitudes
upon multitudes of the old and weak and the young and frail enter without hesitation
or complaint upon such incredible journeys and endure the resultant miseries
without repining.”

“It is done in love, or it is done in fear, I do not know which it is. No
matter what the impulse is, the act born of it is beyond imagination, marvelous to our kind of people, the cold whites.”

I am unraveling the mysteries of Kumbh Mela by participating in the #TheKumbhMelaExperience
activity at BlogAdda in association with Anugraha.

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