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Release Date : 16 July 2010
Year : 2010
Banner : G. S. Entertainment
Presenter : G. S. Entertainment
Producer : Bunty Walia , Jaspreet Singh Walia
Director :
Genre : Action | Drama | War | Social
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Kashmir... Once known as a paradise on earth, it is now a playground for blood thirsty militants. A company is generating millions of unaccountable dollars that benefit all powers from politicians and leaders to bureaucrats in the Indian and Pakistani intelligence. From high ranking army and police officers to the militants and their supporters, everyone gets a piece of the pie. The Military Intelligence gets a whiff of a plot that is likely to disrupt and possibly paralyze Kashmir. Vikram is sent to investigate this highly confidential mission assuming the identity of Gul Jehangir. The same day that he lands in the valley, Haji, a top separatist leader, survives a blast. Is there a connection between the blast and the operation? To solve this conundrum, Vikram teams up with Aziza, Haji's young, aggressive and outspoken protégé. The intensity of their beliefs and their will to survive against all odds creates a special bond between them. They embark together on a journey full of intrigue, suspicion, betrayal and danger, to uncover the truth. What seems like a routine investigation ends up being an operation that will change the perspectives and ideologies of both Vikram and Aziza as it exposes the dirty secrets of a state's fight for freedom, the corrupt nexus of politicians, intelligence, militancy and the crucification of idealistic and passionate people. In such a scenario, are the bullet and the bomb the only solution? Will wisdom prevail in the valley of flowers so that the common Kashmiri's are not sacrificed in the crossfire of politics? Will Vikram manage to restore peace and normalcy in the heaven turned hell?


Lamhaa The Untold Story: Told Tale…Watered Down

By MovieTalkies.com, 17 July 2010 2.5 / 5

'Lamhaa The Untold Story Of Kashmir', comes close on the heels of 'Red Alert', and like the former, tries to take an upfront, close up of a volatile issue plaguing the county. Both films deal with issues which are highly complex and it would be stupid to expect the respective filmmakers to provide a solution in their films. Jammu and Kashmir has been burning since almost after Independence, and to date, there has been no peace in the state. Rahul Dholakia's 'Lamhaa' attempts to go close to the problem and builds a fascinating story around it, but obviously, is not able to provide any answers. The film's tagline is somewhat misleading as Lamhaa is not really an 'untold story' but one which people have been reading in newspapers and seeing on television for years. With this movie, Dholakia steps into very typical Bollywood territory and the film is a very typical mainstream product. The material that Dholakia is dealing with is hardly new. Yes, one has to admit that hearing anti Indian slogans is quite disturbing and a sort of novelty for Hindi film viewers. Dholakia does attempt to untangle the politics behind the Jammu and Kashmir issue but it still comes across as a very watered down treatment. Once you enroll stars, there are certain things which come with the territory, like Dutt's heroics at the end, which is hardly realistic and the romantic song between Bipasha Basu and Kunal Kapoor. The other problem with the movie is that even though it has a very fast paced screenplay, often it also appears to be very scattered and disjointed. But overall, the film is still quite a refreshing change from the usual simplistic Hindi film fare that is normally dished up. The disappointing thing about the movie is that it has been directed by Dholakia and one expected a stronger statement from him. The film opens with military intelligence officer Vikram (Dutt) being assigned to a special mission in Kashmir, where a major disturbance is expected, one which is expected to have far reaching consequences. He assumes the identity of Gul Jehangir and lands in the Valley. On that very day, a major blast takes place in Srinagar, where a top separatist leader, Haji (Anupam Kher), who is in cahoots with the Lashkar and ISI, escapes with his life. There seems to be a connection with the blast and the expected operation to be launched by the separatists and Vikram gets into action trying to unravel the plot. He meets Aziza (Bipasha), one of Haji's close followers. Her outspoken ways bring her into a confrontation with Haji and she soon parts ways with him and teams up with Vikram to unravel the plot. What comes out is the usual nexus between politicians, businessmen, arms dealers and the Pakistani ISI. The 'jihaadi' camps in Pakistan occupied Kashmir where kids are trained in warfare and a corrupt army top brass which is more than happy to look the other way as separatists infiltrate the porous border between Indian and Pakistan is something that everybody knows about, nevertheless, it is still disturbing to watch. Also on display is the plight of so many mothers, wives and sisters awaiting news of their men, who were taken by the army and have been missing for years. Yes, none of this is new and we read about it daily in our newspapers. Kashmir, the heaven on earth is really a hell hole, as one of the characters in the film aptly puts it. The mess in the state created by successive governments, the Indian army, our neighbouring countries and the corrupt middlemen, seems to be almost beyond repair. And of course, nobody is willing to take the risk of allowing the real voice of the Kashmiris to be heard. Dholakia does his best to capture all of this despair and anger in his movie. He is greatly aided by his cinematographer James Fowlds, who does a brilliant job of recreating this atmosphere with his camera. The colour palette that is chosen by the DoP is telling. Delving mostly with greys and blues, he succeeds in bringing out the stark despair in the state. And even in these stark colours, the Valley looks breathtakingly beautiful. The music by Mithoon perfectly complements the content and the scenic beauty. Dholakia is letdown by his screenplay (Dholakia and Raghav Dhar), which though very well paced, is a little scattered and does not go very deep into the issue. Also the manner in which Dutt's character cracks the plot in the end and manages to win the day, is a little too filmy and not dealt with sincerely. Probably, Dholakia's intent, though in the right place, was not strong enough to make a stark difference to the movie. The finale, it is just way too filmy, and that too without any proper buildup. In fact, Dholakia's intent gets watered down the moment one sees Dutt stroll into the frame. No fault of the actor though, as he puts in a sincere performance. It is more about what Dutt stands for. Ditto for Bipasha, though one must confess that she has done quite a fine job in the movie. Kher is a great actor and he gets a chance to display his histrionics in this movie and fares quite well. Kunal Kapoor's role takes a backseat, but at least he seems to look the part. He is impressive in certain scenes but is not charismatic enough. The other character actors like Shernaz Patel, Yashpal Sharma and Rajesh Khera are quite good in their parts. However, Mahesh Manjrekar seems a little wasted and his Marathi accent is quite a giveaway. 'Lamhaa' works in parts. As a whole, it is disappointing only because one expected a lot more from Dholakia. By taking the mainstream way, Dholakia may have ensured that his film gets watched by all, but one is not sure if the compromise seemed worth it as the issue seems lost. 'Lamhaa' manages a few convincing and sane moments, but that's about it. In the end, Dholakia's 'Lamhaa' seems quite doomed, almost like its subject.

Lamhaa: Kashmir Strikes Top Note!

By MovieTalkies.com, 23 June 2010 3.5 / 5

Rahul Dholakia is back after 'Parzania'. This time, he attempts a film on the terror stricken state of Jammu and Kashmir. There have not been too many such attempts made before, specially where mainstream cinema is concerned. Hence, one's expectations from Dholakia are a little high, going by his previous venture. One is expecting a more serious and sensitive approach by him and not something flippant. The movie has been produced by Bunty Walia and stars Sanjay Dutt, Bipasha Basu and Kunal Kapoor. The film's music has been composed by Mithoon, who last gave music for 'The Train' and Anwar, while the lyrics have been penned by Sayeed Qadri. The musical album has six numbers and, thankfully, no remixes. The first number on the album is called 'madno' and has been sung by Kshitij Tarey and Chinmayi. This number is repeated later in the album as a number called 'saajna'. But more on that, later. Coming back to 'madno', there is something extremely soothing and captivating about this number. Kshitij and Chimanyi do a very good job with the number and go a long way in enhancing the melodic appeal of the number with their rendition. It has a lovely flow and creates a hypnotic atmosphere. The second number on the album is called 'salaam zindagi' and has been sung by Arun Daga and Mohammed Irfan with additional vocals by Salim, who adds the so called 'Kashmiri' touch. It begins with happy voices of children laughing, before the actual song begins. The feel good, melodic pattern emerges in this number, but it's not as captivating as the opening number. But this is the kind of number whose appeal will be enhanced with the visuals. Though it sounds very good, it has little shelf life. The next song, 'main kaun hoon' comes as a surprise as it has been sung by Palash Sen, who rarely does playback. The lyrics of this track have been penned by Amitabh Varma. This is a soft rock number and Palash gives the song a kind of gravity as he begins the song on a very low octave. The music has a mix of Kashmiri folk and is again quite captivating and rather pleasing on the ears. The song's lyrics talk about the situation in Kashmir and has a sense of anguish about it, which is quite poignant. This is a number that is likely to pick up as the days go by. It combines all three ingredients, great lyrics, good music and a heart rending rendition, which go on to make a great number. Surely, 'main kaun hoon' is likely to grow on one with successive hearings. The fourth track is called 'saajna' and has been sung by Mika and Chinmayi. Mithoon springs another surprise by picking Mika as the main singer on this number. It is a repetition of the 'madna' number and Mika does wonders with it. This is a very different side of Mika, one which has rarely been exploited by composers. The mesmeric quality of the song seems to have been taken a notch higher by Mika, who is joined by Chinmayi later in the number. His less than perfect vocals seem to add another dimension to this beautiful romantic track. It is definitely one of the highlights of this album. The fifth track on the album is called 'zameen o aasmaa' and has been sung by Kshitij. Again nothing overboard, as the soft lilting quality is seen in this track as well. The music has a wonderfully haunting quality about it and Kshitij does a great job with his soft vocals. This is again a number whose impact is likely to be enhanced when heard along with the visuals. The last track, 'rehmat zara' has been sung by Mithoon himself along with Mohd. Irfan. This is soft rock number which again has very telling lyrics which refer to Kashmir and the sorry state of affairs in the state. This is the only number in the album which has a very lively feel to it and a catchy rhythm. Mithoon does a great job as singer as well in the company of Irfan. The refrain of 'rehmat zara' is quite catchy and this has what it takes to hit the charts. The music of Lamhaa seems to go well with the theme of the movie as all the songs have been written keeping in mind the state of affairs in Kashmir. They are in a sense quite situational and yet manage to have a universal appeal to them as well. Its soft, melodic quality is its biggest appeal. If one has to pick any two songs in the album then one would surely pick 'saajna' and 'main kaun hoon', as they stand not just for their lyrics and music but also for the manner in which they have been rendered by Mika and Palash, respectively. Mithoon and Qadri combine very well indeed to give us a score which is provoking both intellectually as well as musically.
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