Saturday, May 22, 2010


LA Weekly review also posted here, on a new blog page (still threadbare) set up as an additional repository for more formal or durable-feeling posts, published or otherwise. HG will remain, I hope: a mostly pleasant place to hang out. But it is no longer quite what it was set up to be, and it was time to acknowledge this.

KITES Indian-made and trilingual in Hindi, Spanish, and English, Kites is set and was mostly shot in the American Southwest—although in its backlit visual overkill, complete with neon reflected in rain-drenched streets, it more closely resembles some of the most overwrought Hong Kong gangster romances of the late 1980s. Jay (Hrithik Roshan, one of Hindi cinema’s most engaging leading men) rolls off a freight train with a gaping bullet wound and a lot of backstory to unload. A con artist, not as amoral he thinks he is, Jay makes the mistake of falling hard for Natasha (Bárbara Mori), the fiancée of a spoiled young Sin City prince of crime, setting up an impossibly-beautiful-lovers-on-the-run-scenario that director Anurag Basu shoots like a series of windswept fashion videos. Even with the lights of the Vegas Strip forming a gauzy halo behind his tousled head, Roshan is a master at low-keying his enormous charm and shrugging off his blinding handsomeness. Mori, a Mexican telenovela star, is almost a match for him: She's a dead ringer for Megan Fox, but warmer and less calculating in her sexiness. Not even the incoherent mish-mash of the plot (mostly faux–Sergio Leone by way of Tarantino and Rodriguez, with periodic car-flipping chase sequences) can entirely dim the appeal of this match-up between a blue-eyed Punjabi and a blue-eyed Mexican of almost equal comeliness. Kites will be released Stateside both in this original 130-minute, subtitled version and in a shorter, dubbed “remix” prepared by noted Bollywood aficionado Brett Ratner. (David Chute)

1 comment:

Generic said...

IndieWire reporter:

"The fact that it cracked the top ten was entirely random based on what the competition was . It still grossed considerably LESS than My Name Is Khan and 3 Idiots despite being on twice the screens (had either of those films been released this weekend and grossed those amounts, they would have been in the top ten as well).

"I made clear to note it wasn't a BAD gross my any means... but it still had about 1/3 the per-theater-average both Khan and 3 Idiots did. So I feel pretty comfortable stating that - relative to those Bollywood films - Kites is, as I called it, "somewhat disappointing.""