DESHA: THE LEADER
Director: Saikat Nasir
Story: Saikat Nasir
Cast: Mahiya Mahi, Shipan Mit, Tariq Anam Khan
Strength: Concept, Tariq's acting
Weakness: Screenplay, Cinematography, Lack of Detailing
Plot: The winner of a political reality show turns a simple man into a national hero.
Review: the story is about a political television Reality Show called “Who will be our Next Leader” produced by the fictional Channel 99 to find an ideal leader who will take the country forward. To select the next leader, people all over the country votes through SMS. Among the four nominees, Hasan Hyder (Tariq Anam Khan) wins the show by a significant margin. As part of the show, the elected leader will stay at the house of the person who voted the maximum number of times for two days. Because of this arrangement, Hasan visits the village of Selim (Shipon Mit). On the last day of the visit, Hasan comes under attack by terrorists. Selim, in a bid to save Hasan's life, bets not only his own life but also sacrifices that of his parents. Because of his honorable sacrifice, Hasan Hayder gave Selim an honorary title of “Desha” and integrates him in his party as a key member. After the first quarter of the film, the plot of the movie delves into a visualization of political game and lust for power. After a while, the audience is made aware of a master plan behind all the events that occurred throughout the movie. To minimize the risk of exposure, the entire terrorist groups involved in previous attacks were eliminated. When Sristy (Mahi) finds some evidence of the involvement of influential people, the story starts to take a new turn.
With such a unique plot, this movie could have been something special but the lack of directorial knowledge and expertise meant this movie just couldn't be the hit it could have been. On the soundtrack side, only James's music stood out in the entire movie. Despite all the flaws present, however, Tariq Anam Khan's acting in the movie was absolutely superb and the saving grace this film needed.
Reviewed by Abdullah Al Amin (Rubel)
Director: Joe Lynch
Writers: Yale Hannon
Stars: Salma Hayek, Jennifer Blanc, Uros Certic
Strength: Acting, action, effects
Weakness: Story and dialogue
Runtime: 92 minutes
Plot: An action/thriller centered on a woman who faces down assassins sent by her ex, a mob boss, while holed up in her apartment.
Review: Fade in and you will see a different perspective as the camera is filming from the top of a room. A naked figure stumbles into the room and you hear voices coming from outside. Everly seems prepared for something as she fishes out a pistol from the toilet tank. And so it begins - the carnage! In this shoot 'em up film, you get just that. Everly is a good popcorn movie. Good acting, great action. No story. Salma Hayek plays her role well and looks unbelievable as Everly. There are holes in the plot all over the place and some things just don't make sense at all. But that's the way it was meant to me – this is a low budget pure action flick. You don't need to think about it afterwards or much during the film either. If you can overlook the obvious flaws in storyline then this is worth a watch. The numerous death scenes are great and Salma spends the movie showing off her curvy body. Joe Lynch has called this his 'real' first film as a director. He comes off as a genuine film fan more than anything else – a lot of the scenes in Everly will remind you of other movies, such as Die Hard, Smoking Aces and Kill Bill. The action is kinetic and very bloody with some humor thrown in. But it's not those looking for something profound and thoughtful. On a side note, the music and background score is very well done, and adds great value to the overall entertainment.
Reviewed by Zakir Mushtaque
FULL METAL JACKET (1987)
Director: Stanley Kubrick
Writers: Gustav Hasford, Stanley Kubrick
Stars: Matthew Modine, R. Lee Ermey, Vincent D'Onofrio
Runtime: 116 minutes
Plot: A pragmatic U.S. Marine observes the dehumanizing effects the U.S.-Vietnam War has on his fellow recruits from their brutal boot camp training to the bloody street fighting in Hue.
Review: Full Metal Jacket states its primary concern fairly loud: Private Joker (Matthew Modine) is grilled for wearing a peace pin on his combat uniform while having "Born to Kill" scrawled across his helmet. He responds that it is a comment on the duality of man, warring and peaceable.
The film reflects this two-sided dilemma with a two-part story. The dialogue in both sections is a constant clash between the inflating, propagandistic, and sickly comic language of professional soldiering (aided by the immensely foul-mouthed drill sergeant Hartman, played by former Marine sergeant R. Lee Ermey) and Joker's more self-preserving enterprises, first as the tutor of the inept Pyle and then as the journalist reluctantly covering the military perspective of the war and just as reluctant. He is never truly the vicious fighter the Marines want him to be, but he is every bit as detestable as his more unthinking counterparts.
Kubrick's particularly effective stroke was to purposefully ignore the politics of Vietnam and keep both sides of this generalized central conflict right in your face. Kubrick works expressly on this level of the individual and unspecialized grunt to create a film that is less a defense or criticism of war than a strike at the mythologies of war-making. In its constant and irreversible violence, Full Metal Jacket, one of Kubrick's grittiest works, is also one of his most resonant.
Reviewed by S.M. Intisab Shahriyar