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1980s in Bollywood: The decade offered a dizzying array of cinematic delights

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Written by Shaikh Ayaz | Mumbai | Published: December 30, 2017 6:30 am In the fourth of our on-going essay series called ‘Hindi classics that defined the decade,’ we look back at the 1980s Bollywood hits.

Most critics generally brush off the 1980s as a “low point” in Hindi cinema and the “lowest”, they demurred, was about to follow – the dreadful 1990s. Was this period, then, a veritable decline for Bollywood? Did the 1980s have nothing worth celebrating? Well, there was plenty to begin with. You merely have to look at the sheer versatility and variety of cinema on display in that decade to know that 1980s is just as important as any other. It’s a decade in which a period spectacle like Umrao Jaan rubbed shoulder with the madcap Jaane Bhi Do Yaaro and Govind Nihalani-Om Puri’s breakthrough Ardh Satya, considered a treasure of the art-house circuit while Mahesh Bhatt’s sensitive Arth shared sibling love with the seriously entertaining Mr India and Vidhu Vinod Chopra’s essential gangster best-seller, Parinda.

Musically, the Laxmikant-Pyarelal and RD Burman-era 1980s anticipated the Nadeem Shravan-infused saccharine melody of the 1990s. (Gulzar did some of his finest works in the 1980s, ending the decade with Ijaazat and Libaas). You could feel romance in the air, with the star-crossed love stories introducing two young men who have had a riveting hold on the audiences in wildly different ways. Ek Duuje Ke Liye, Kamal Haasan’s Hindi debut, Romeo-Julietified the trend for shock endings. Aamir Khan and Juhi Chawla’s breakout Qayamat Se Qayamat Tak followed the same path. Music was the soul of both films. Music was also at the heart of the success of Karz, with Rishi Kapoor flexing his rockstar-dom and so, one must say, Umrao Jaan whose mujras (performed with grace by Rekha), poetry (director Muzaffar Ali’s favourite Shahryar at work) and Khayyam’s immortal compositions are a throwback to 1950s classicism.

So, is 1980s really all that bad? Indeed, it had its misses and misfortunes, but overall, the decade saw an excellent mix of meaningful and commercially-minded hits that has inspired as many viewers to think as much as it has entertained. In the fourth of our on-going essay series called ‘Hindi classics that defined the decade,’ we look back at the 1980s Bollywood hits.

Karz (1980)

Karz (1980)

Today, this film is held up as a classic example of a “musical blockbuster,” in the canny phrasing of the Hindi cinema trade. But, if director Subhash Ghai is to be believed, it was a commercial flop on its release. “Every critic criticised that film,” Ghai told an interviewer. “In the 1980s, Karz was like today’s Kisna.” Karz infuses LP’s chartbuster music with Rishi Kapoor’s boyish charm and the ever-so-dependable theme of reincarnation. Farah Khan’s adoring tribute to Laxmikant-Pyarelal and Karz in Om Shanti Om says all that there is to say about this film’s continuing influence on today’s mainstream filmmakers. “I think it’s Subhash Ghai’s best film,” Khan once declared.

Khubsoorat (1980)

Khubsoorat (1980)
Khubsoorat is a little gem from Hrishikesh Mukherjee’s vast portfolio. Not his best but it manages to have many of the themes we associate with a Hrishida film. Familiar faces adorn the screen, especially a warm-hearted turn by Ashok Kumar as the henpecked husband sneaking in cigarettes when wife Dina Pathak is not around. Contrast this with David’s household, where life is one big party. The daughters (one of them played effervescently by Rekha) play games and trade ‘qaafiya’, but when the elder one gets married off into the Ashok Kumar family (who himself, as it turns out, is a closet music connoisseur holding a master class on the terrace) she has to follow the strict discipline set by the stern, principal-like Dina Pathak. Is life worth living with so many rules around? Rekha, who walks into the kitchen to grab an unwashed apple only to receive a cold stare from her future mother-in-law, will find out.

Umrao Jaan (1981)

Top Bollywood songs of 2017: Dil Diyan Gallan, Ban Ja Rani, Humsafar find place on the list

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Written by Shivangi Jalan | New Delhi | Published: December 30, 2017 6:30 am Here’s a playlist of the best Bollywood songs for 2017.

2017 may have been a dull year for Bollywood releases but it definitely wasn’t the same for the Hindi music industry. From foot-tapping dance numbers to soulful romantic tracks, B-town’s singers gave us a dose of everything. Among the top singers for the year were the regulars like AR Rahman, Atif Aslam, Arijit Singh but even new voices like Akhil Sachdeva and Parineeti Chopra gained recognition.

While the best songs of the year are majorly dominated by romantic numbers like “Ban Ja Rani” from Tumhari Sulu, “Humsafar” from Badrinath Ki Dulhani, “Nazm Nazm” from Bareilly Ki Barfi, even peppy numbers such as “Sweety Tera Drama” from Bareilly Ki Barfi also find place in the list.

Here’s a best of 2017 playlist, specially curated for you to rewind through the year (in no particular order).

Ban Ja Rani – Guru Randhawa

Guru Randhawa’s track from Tumhari Sulu has been picturized on Vidya Balan and Manav Kaul. It is composed by Randhawa and Rajat Nagpal and voiced by Randhawa himself. While Randhawa already has hits like “Suit Suit” and “High Rated Gabru” to his credit, “Ban Ja Rani” has a slightly different tenderness attached to it.

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Maana Ke Hum Yaar Nahi – Parineeti Chopra and Sonu Nigam

Every best songs list is incomplete without the mention of Sonu Nigam’s stirring voice. And that is exactly the game changer in this reworked duet version of the original Parineeti song. The lyrics that have been penned by Kausar Munir beautifully tell the tale of two ex-lovers trying to escape their feelings.

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Humsafar – Akhil Sachdeva and Mansheel Gujral

Visualised on Varun Dhawan and Alia Bhatt in the film Badrinath Ki Dulhania, “Humsafar” perfectly captures the musings of a heart falling in love. Akhil Sachdeva has composed, written and rendered this soft sufi romantic ballad.

Tiger Zinda Hai box office collection day 8: Salman Khan film becomes the second-highest grossing film of 2017

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By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi | Updated: December 29, 2017 6:30 pm Tiger Zinda Hai is having a dream run at the box office.

Whatever your opinion of Salman Khan, the guy does know how to make his films work at the box office. Perhaps he has discovered a particular demographic that will come in droves to watch whatever he serves, but one thing is certain: he has the formula. His latest release Tiger Zinda Hai overtook the lifetime collection of one of the biggest success stories of 2017 (Golmaal Again) in – wait for it – seven days. This is nothing short of incredible.

In a week, the film, which is a sequel to 2012’s Ek Tha Tiger and also stars Katrina Kaif, has collected Rs 206.04 crore. Only ‘Bollywood’ film with more numbers than Ek Tha Tiger is not really a Bollywood film. It is the SS Rajamouli’s Hindi dubbed version of originally Tamil-Telugu film Baahubali 2: The Conclusion.

One might say Tiger Zinda Hai benefitted from less competition at the box office. The only film that was doing well when it released was Fukrey Returns. But it is still a huge achievement. Trade analyst Taran Adarsh tweeted the figures. “And #TZH hits a DOUBLE CENTURY… #TigerZindaHai is on ???… Emerges an OUTRIGHT WINNER… Now eyes ₹ 300 cr Club… Fri 34.10 cr, Sat 35.30 cr, Sun 45.53 cr, Mon 36.54 cr, Tue 21.60 cr, Wed 17.55 cr, Thu 15.42 cr. Total: ₹ 206.04 cr. India biz,” he said.

And #TZH hits a DOUBLE CENTURY… #TigerZindaHai is on ???… Emerges an OUTRIGHT WINNER… Now eyes ₹ 300 cr Club… Fri 34.10 cr, Sat 35.30 cr, Sun 45.53 cr, Mon 36.54 cr, Tue 21.60 cr, Wed 17.55 cr, Thu 15.42 cr. Total: ₹ 206.04 cr. India biz.

— taran adarsh (@taran_adarsh) December 29, 2017

The Bhai of Bollywood celebrated his birthday on Thursday, and there could not have been a better gift for him than the continually great numbers audiences have given him.

If all goes normal, Tiger Zinda Hai is certainly going to do well in the coming days. Since this is the holiday season, Bhai fans may like to come for repeated viewings as no true Bhai fan, I was told once, would watch a Bhai film only once. That would be sacrilege.

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The Greatest Showman movie review: The Hugh Jackman starrer is far from great

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Written by Shalini Langer | New Delhi | Published: December 29, 2017 6:22 pm Michael Gracey, a commercial director and visual effects artist, is clearly more confident staging the various dance sequences, and keeps falling back on them.

The Greatest Showman movie star cast: Hugh Jackman, Michelle Williams, Zac Efron, Zendaya, Rebecca Ferguson
The Greatest Showman movie director: Michael Gracey
The Greatest Showman movie rating: 2.5 stars

The biggest charge thrown at P T Barnum, the American showman known for founding the Barnum & Bailey Circus, was that he was a fraud, who sold fraud. What can you call a film about his life — no less than a cheerful musical — that colours all the greys out, that marginalises all the people he exploited, that drowns out all the questions his life raises in song and dance, to give us a man who is a loving husband, a doting father, a dreamer, and, to top all fakes, a believer in giving every person a chance?

But, as Jackman’s Barnum argues in the film, “hyperbole isn’t the worst crime one can commit”. And for all the problems with the film, it isn’t The Greatest Showman’s worst crime either. Where this film, with some talented star wattage, completely flops is in living up to any of its exalted claims. Of showmanship, of storytelling, of being glorious (a word that comes up often), or of even “a million dreams”.

In the most generic sense, a boy born of extreme poverty has a rich girl called Charity sincerely love and marry him (played as the older woman by Williams), has two lovely girls in quick succession, dreams of putting up a show all his life, stumbles upon a museum of curiosities on sale, and then decides to go chasing odd people used to being laughed at to put on display inside. Since the filmmaker perhaps thought Jackman may not draw in the younger audiences, a rich, attractive partner is acquired over the course of a drink, who also agrees for some reason to join his venture (hence enter Efron). And since nothing works like an inter-race romance, this richer partner falls for an African-American trapeze artist (the actress-singer Zendaya) in Barnum’s troupe.

The most interesting person by far in the film is Lettie, the woman singer with facial hair in Barnum’s troupe. If not the 22-year-old dwarf who used to hide out in his mother’s home. We also have Siamese twins, a man who is billed as “the fattest man on Earth”, and an assortment of other people quickly dismissed as “freaks”. However, the film has no time for any of them, except propping them up once in a while to form a favourable backdrop for another episode in Barnum’s life. Lettie especially is given the shortest shrift, despite delivering the film’s most passionate and kickass song, This Is Me.

Instead, we spend the longest time on the sappy romance between Barnum and Charity, and much later on his insipid longing for an opera singer (Ferguson) he brings in from Europe to lend his circus a more respectable air.

Even the battle Barnum constantly fought, of being an outcast in high society as circus was only visited by the low-brow, and of taking on critics who viewed him as morally repugnant (one of them played by the as tight-lipped Paul Sparks, of Tom Yates fame from House of Cards), is never explored to any satisfactory end. Gracey, a commercial director and visual effects artist, is clearly more confident staging the various dance sequences, and keeps falling back on them.

These eventually remain the only high notes in the life of a man, who clearly would have known how to stage a better show.

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Star Trek: Inside “The Trouble with Tribbles,” 50 Years Later

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When America tuned in to Star Trek on December 29, 1967, it got its first glimpse of tribbles. These small, plush alien beings, which swamped the U.S.S. Enterprise and its brave crew, were merely sewn-up pouches of synthetic fur stuffed with foam rubber. But in the fictional Trek universe, tribbles were cute, purring, alive and—because they bred so rapidly—hilarious.

Fifty years after its small-screen debut, “The Trouble with Tribbles” may be the most famous episode of any iteration of Star Trek. It was an unintentional comedy that has delighted generations of fans. Surprisingly, it irritated some of those who helped put it on screen—including Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry. Mr. Spock himself, Leonard Nimoy, once dismissed it as “frivolous.”

“The Trouble with Tribbles” was the first professional sale for David Gerrold, a 23-year-old California college student. An unknown budding writer in September 1966 when he saw Star Trek’s first episode, he almost immediately began thinking of story premises. One of them drew on his teenage experiences of raising frogs, mice, rats, and fish. “I loved animals,” recalled Gerrold, now an award-winning author of many science-fiction novels and stories, in a recent interview. “But all of those critters died on me.”

So in February 1967, he drew up a proposal for an episode he called “The Fuzzies.”

“My original conception was, ‘Aliens are always scary. What if they’re cute but we don’t realize they’re dangerous? What if you had white mice or gerbils that got onto the Enterprise and got out of control?’ ”

Gerrold envisioned a real ecological disaster. “My attitude was that it would be whimsical but that we would have a serious threat,” he said. Nowhere in his work was there to be found now-classic slapstick moments, like William Shatner’s Captain Kirk getting buried in a mountain of tribbles. Gerrold also imagined the buffoonish and chortling Cyrano Jones, the interstellar trader who introduces the beasties to the Enterprise, as a Boris Karloff type. (“You can just see him stroking it and saying, ‘Can I interest you in a harmless little tribble? . . .’ ”)

Gerrold was trying to stay true to what he called the “gravitas” of Star Trek’s first season. One person who would probably have rather seen that gravitas stay intact was Gene Roddenberry. For all his celebrated humanism and we’re-all-alike-under-the-skin tolerance, he wanted Star Trek to be a straightforward, square-jawed action-adventure. “Gene Roddenberry had no sense of humor,” Gerrold said, “and working with him was a joyless exercise.”

Roddenberry was balanced, and sometimes thwarted, by producer Gene L. Coon, who joined Star Trek on August 8, 1966—exactly one month before the show premiered, and at a time when Roddenberry was already burning out from innumerable rewrites and production headaches. Described by associate producer Robert H. Justman as “a romantic with an obvious sense of humor,” Coon brought a welcome wink and nod to the production.

“He knew you had to balance gravitas with lightheartedness—that you can’t save the galaxy every week,” said Gerrold. “Roddenberry never understood that.”

From CBS/Getty Images.

With Coon’s encouragement, Gerrold fleshed out “The Fuzzies” into a full story outline called “A Fuzzy Thing Happened to Me.” (He eventually dubbed his title creatures “tribbles” to avoid legal conflicts with H. Beam Piper’s science-fiction novel Little Fuzzy.) Star Trek story consultant Dorothy Fontana compared the outline favorably to a recent episode with distinctly bright overtones. “This story is one we should purchase,” she wrote. “[It has] the elements of fun grounded in serious problems for our principals that made ‘Shore Leave’ so well received.”

Which Best Picture Nominee Could Save the Oscars?

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It’s Friday, but during this holiday week, time is just a theoretical construct—like my New Year’s resolutions to start weight training and stop making fun of pouting Star Wars fans.

Hello from Los Angeles, where we’re looking for an Oscar season box-office hero, listening to Ridley Scott’s unvarnished movie opinions, and twirling in our Ann Roth–inspired caftans.

AN OSCAR FOR THE PEOPLE

We all remember the extraordinary Moonlight/La La Land best picture envelope flub at last year’s Oscars. But before that jaw-dropping moment in the telecast, another best picture contender, a long shot, was the talk of Twitter. According to social-media research firm Fizziology, Hidden Figures was the movie that TV audiences were excited about during much of the 2017 show. At that point in late February, the feel-good Fox drama starring Taraji P. Henson,Janelle Monae, and Octavia Spencer as a group of NASA mathematicians was 10 weeks and about $153 million domestic dollars into its successful, 42-week box-office run. While the horse race between La La Land and Moonlight consumed Oscar prognosticators, the audience at home—the ones host Jimmy Kimmel and Oscar producers Mike De Luca and Jennifer Todd desperately needed—was buzzing about Monae’s fairy-tale gown, the on-stage appearance of real-life NASA mathematician Katherine Johnson, and Henson’s gleeful grabbing of candy that fell from the Dolby Theater ceiling.

This year’s likely best picture contenders include some box-office bright spots, films that could help intrigue audiences about the telecast. Some earlier-in-the-year releases, like Christopher Nolan’sDunkirk ($188 million domestic) and Jordan Peele’sGet Out ($175 million domestic), have been widely seen. Steven Spielberg’sThe Post got off to a strong start in its limited opening over the Christmas holiday, collecting more than $1 million so far over a week in only nine theaters. Among art-house offerings, Greta Gerwig’sLady Bird is up to about $30 million domestically, passing Moonlight to become distributor A24’s biggest grosser yet. And Fox Searchlight’s Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri is up to $23 million. Expect those numbers to grow after the Oscar nominations are announced January 23.

But it’s hard to imagine what the 2018 Oscars’ Hidden Figures could be. What’s the best picture nominee that broad audiences will be excited enough about to sit on the sofa and root for on March 4, which is still (shudder) more than two months away? Could Rian Johnson’sStar Wars: The Last Jedi or Lee Unkrich and Adrian Molina’sCoco make the cut with Oscar voters outside below-the-line and animation categories? What about Patty Jenkins’sWonder Woman, which, despite an enthusiastic Academy screening over the summer, seems to have disappeared from Oscar conversations? This year’s unpredictable awards race has no shortage of strong, eclectic films. But what this Oscars still need is a real box-office hero.

AT THE MOVIES WITH RIDLEY SCOTT

I guess when you’re 80 and you just re-shot a movie in nine days, you can say . . . whatever the heck you want. In a recent interview with Vulture’s Kyle Buchanan about speedily replacing Kevin Spacey with Christopher Plummer in his new movie, All the Money in the World,Ridley Scott also dropped his opinion of Blade Runner 2049,Denis Villeneuve’s follow-up to Scott’s 1982 neo-noir classic. “It was fucking way too long,” Scott said of Blade Runner 2049’s two-hour, 44-minute run time. “Fuck me! And most of that script’s mine.” Eventually, Scott backed off a bit: “I shouldn’t talk,” he said. “I’m being a bitch.” Well, Ridley, you kind of are. And also, let’s get together to mix some skinny margaritas, watch some screeners, and sell this show to Bravo.

BEST DRESSED

Yes, The Post is about both the power of the First Amendment and a bold businesswoman charting her path in a sexist era. But Steven Spielberg’s newspaper drama is also, as V.F.’s Katey Richpoints out, a showcase for one of the year’s great movie dresses. Rich spoke with The Post’s costume designer, Ann Roth, about the flowing white caftan Meryl Streep wears as Katharine Graham while hosting a party and making the movie’s pivotal to-publish-or-not-to-publish decision. Roth, who has worked with Streep since 1983’s Silkwood, came aboard The Post a mere month before shooting began. She told Rich she made the caftan, since she didn’t have time to hunt down a perfect vintage one. The 86-year-old costume designer also deflected the focus on her work in the film. “The movie is so important to me that the costumes are the least—it’s just not about that,” she said.

A PHANTOM AUDITION

“Vicky, I’m sorry, but do you know who we are talking about?” That’s what Vicky Krieps’s agent said after the Luxembourg actress replied with nonchalance to the news that she had just scored a director meeting based on an audition. In a conversation withV.F.’s Julie Miller, Krieps recalled responding to her agent, “Now that you mention it, I don’t remember the director’s name. But it’s for some student film in England, right?” After a pause, the agent responded, “No. It’s for Paul Thomas Anderson.” Krieps described her preparation to star opposite Daniel Day-Lewis in Anderson’s Phantom Thread as a process of “forgetting.” “I didn’t Google Daniel’s name before filming,” she said. “I didn’t want to see his movies. I tried to forget everything about acting myself.”

EARBUDS TIME

This week’s episode of V.F.’s podcast Little Gold Men includes Richard Lawson’s interviews with Phantom Thread’s Lesley Manville and Film Stars Don’t Die in Liverpool’s Jamie Bell. Come for the awards season chatter, stay for the charming English accents.

That’s the news for this week on the Hollywood and awards beat. Tell me what you’re seeing out there. Send tips, comments, valet-line gossip, big deals you overheard at the Polo Lounge, bad vibes you picked up at Craft, and Ridley Scott’s unvarnished movie reviews to Rebecca_Keegan@condenast.com. Follow me on Twitter @thatrebecca.

Black Mirror Season 4 Has a New Twist: The Possibility of a Happy Ending

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There’s a moment in every Black Mirror episode where the other shoe drops. Sometimes it happens early on—like in Season 3’s “Nosedive,” about a dystopian future in which social status is determined entirely by online ratings. Other times, it takes a while—like in Season 2’s “White Bear,” which waits until its conclusion to reveal that we’ve been watching a long, disturbing punishment all along, targeting the person we’ve been led to believe was the hero. The series has trained us to wait for the twist, something that reveals each episode’s sinister thesis.

It’s even more surprising, then, when Black Mirror gives us something truly unexpected: a happy ending. That’s the case for two—arguably three—episodes in the anthology’s fourth season, which premiered Friday on Netflix. And perhaps most shockingly of all, these are the episodes that stand out from the pack, taking Black Mirror in exciting new directions. (Caution: we’re going to discuss those endings below, so beware if you haven’t watched the entire season yet.)

“U.S.S. Callister,” a.k.a. “the Star Trek one,” will likely be this season’s answer to “San Junipero”—the breakout, Emmy-winning Season 3 installment about two women falling in love inside a computer simulation. In “Callister,” a group of people who work at a gaming company find themselves cloned in their chief technical officer’s (Jesse Plemons) private version of the game, which he uses to torment them into playing along with his own cheesy story lines.

The reality is virtual, but the stakes are real—because this is Black Mirror, and we’ve seen how dark the show can get. That inherent anxiety makes character moments like Jimmi Simpson’s big speech near the end of the episode—in which he recounts how Plemons’s character broke his spirit by tossing a cloned version of his son out of an air lock—resonate so much more strongly, and makes the episode’s final, triumphant payoff even more of a relief. After a thrilling chase sequence that cuts back and forth between reality and the game, the crew of the ship, imprisoned until now, find themselves free to explore the vast new expanses of an unknown digital universe.

“Hang the D.J.” has a similar feeling of urgency, not least because Black Mirror episodes about dating and relationships (“San Junipero” excluded) always go terribly. Its central conceit—a program arbitrarily gives people in another apparent dystopia a set time limit for their relationships before its algorithm ultimately finds each of them The One—is upended in a sudden and surprising way, right as all seems to be lost. Only then does the show reveal that our two heroes, kept apart by the machine but brought back together by destiny, are actually an anthropomorphized simulation of two real people in the real world, calculating their prospects of a successful relationship via a dating app. We’ve just seen one of the 98 percent of times their relationship is predicted to work out. The last few minutes of the episode are such a head rush they make you feel giddy.

Which brings us to “Black Museum,” the season finale—and an episode that would also work as a series finale, as it may be the quintessential Black Mirror fantasy. The hour takes us through a litany of Black Mirror-like shorts—a doctor becomes addicted to a device he uses to feel and diagnose his patients’ pain; the consciousness of a dead mother is placed into the head of her partner, but gradually, he sours on their arrangement; a mad scientist makes an exact copy of a convicted criminal in hologram form, so that people can pull the lever on his electric chair and watch him die again and again—before settling all of them in a satisfying, if not exactly uplifting, conclusion. It’s most comparable to the 2014 Black Mirror special “White Christmas” in its format: bite-size stories introduce technological concepts that become intertwined by the episode’s end. This time, though, the subjects aren’t secretly living in a simulation or imprisoned inside an egg. The character who becomes drastically more menacing as the story goes on receives his much-deserved comeuppance by the end, and our hero literally rides off into the sunset with a smile on her face.

These payoffs are exhilarating—but they wouldn’t pack such a punch if they hadn’t come after three seasons of really-makes-you-think thought experiments that coaxed humanity’s darkest sins into the light. Previously, Black Mirror episodes tended to follow a pattern; viewers knew not to get too invested in the livelihoods of their characters, because we knew those characters would prove to be either deeply flawed or hapless idiots, victims of their own relationships with tech.

And half of this season falls into that same predictable format: in “Arkangel,” a mother inadvertently ruins the life of the daughter she wants to protect by implanting child-monitoring software into her head. Yep, saw that coming. In “Metalhead,” a woman fails to return to her family after being tracked by a murderous robotic “dog.” Sounds about right. “Crocodile” ends with our protagonist getting arrested for leaving a trail of murders easily picked up by new software that visually records the memories of witnesses. Naturally. Each of these episodes provides an interesting situation to mull over—but by the end, we’re de-sensitized to the disappointment prompted by downer ending after downer ending.

But last season, “San Junipero”—the first Black Mirror installment with an unambiguously happy conclusion—turned that idea on its head. And with “U.S.S. Callister,” “Hang the D.J.,” and “Black Museum,” the show continues to evolve and surprise us—the surprise being, this time, that its endings don’t always have to be bleak. These happy episodes come at just the right moment in the series’s history: its shocker resolutions had already become a meme, something fans and haters alike could joke about. More broadly, giant plot twists have become such a norm that they’re becoming impossible not to spot.

So when Black Mirror began, we soon figured out the show’s main twist: there would be no happy endings. But four seasons in, the new twist is that this is not always the case. And occasionally, it’s nice not to be reminded how easy it would be to destroy ourselves.

Yeh Hai Mohabbatein, December 29, 2017 full episode written update: Raman surprises Pihu in Santa attire

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Written by Srishty Arora | New Delhi | Published: December 29, 2017 8:50 pm Yeh Hai Mohabbatein, December 29, 2017 full episode written update: Pihu sneakily handcuffs Ishita and Raman.

Episode starts with Alia and Aadi looking for Christmas tree with Pihu. Pihu reminds them of gifts for Secret Santa. Bhalla ji starts finding the gift for Toshi ji. when Toshi ji enters and tells Bhalla ji that there will be no non-veg in the party because of Madrasis. Bhalla ji suggests Toshi ji to bring drinks to the party.

Ishita comes with her family for the party and meets everyone. Ishita asks Mrs Iyer about the house keys. She tells Ishita that it’s in her purse. Shagun enters and asks Ishita what she is looking for and teases her for Raman.

Raman comes in Santa attire and gives everyone candies. Bhalla ji receives the gift from delivery man for Toshi ji. Everyone dances together on the song “Ishq se behtar kuch nahi”. Mrs Iyer drinks Toshi ji’s drink and dances like crazy.

Alia asks Pihu to bring Raman and Ishita together under the balloon. Alia tells Raman and Ishita that they have to kiss each other because they are under the balloon. Raman denies of kissing Ishita. Ishita kisses Raman on his forehead.

Ruhi gets a box of gift which is named as “N” and she finds red gloves in it. Pihu opens some gifts and she finds handcuffs in one gift. Bhalla ji feels embarrassed on seeing the hand cuffs and accepts that this is for Toshi ji. In the other room Simmi discusses with Param ji how to get the keys from Mrs Iyer’s purse. While Ishita and Raman are fighting in their room, Pihu sneakily handcuffs them

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Ridley Scott wasn’t ‘particularly interested’ in directing All the Money in the World

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By: IANS | Los Angeles | Published: December 29, 2017 8:40 pm Ridley Scott says the word ‘Getty’ conjured a specific memory for him.

Filmmaker Ridley Scott says he wasn’t “particularly interested” in helming All The Money In The World, which revolves around oil tycoon J. Paul Getty.

“The word Getty conjured up a specific memory for me, I of course knew who he was and was familiar with the incident and I wasn’t particularly interested. But within a few lines and after meeting with Dan (Friedkin) and Bradley (Thomas), I knew I was in good hands,” Scott said in a statement.

All The Money In The World follows Getty’s grandson John Paul Getty III, who was kidnapped by an organised crime regime, and his mother Gail’s (Michelle Williams) attempts to convince his wealthy grandfather to pay the ransom. The film, brought to India by PVR Pictures, will release in the country on January 5.

“A great script like this is the jewel in the crown and it’s the hardest part. When I read it, I thought ‘wow’. The material and the script were great and I absolutely wanted to make this movie,” Scott added.

Talking about J. Paul Getty, Scott said, “He was a brilliant man, but all that fell away when he was asked how much he would pay for his grandson and he said ‘Nothing’. Everyone was shocked to the core.”

The film is also in the news for a last minute replacement and re-shoot. Actor Christopher Plummer replaced actor Kevin Spacey at the eleventh hour, following sexual harassment accusations against Spacey.

[contfnewc]

It was announced in November that 58-year-old Spacey would be cut out of Scott’s biopic, which would have seen him take on the role of the oil tycoon. The decision was made after the actor faced a slew of sexual assault allegations. Plummer re-shot all the scenes already filmed by Spacey.

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Tiger Zinda Hai director Ali Abbas Zafar: Salman Khan and I work very well together

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By: IANS | Mumbai | Published: December 29, 2017 8:19 pm Ali Abbas Zafar says Tiger Zinda Hai gives the message of love and humanity.

Euphoric with the stupendous success of Tiger Zinda Hai, director Ali Abbas Zafar says it’s the message of love and humanity which has struck a chord with the audience. The movie, starring Salman Khan and Katrina Kaif, has brought much-needed respite to the box-office by earning over Rs 200 crore in seven days since its release itself.

Excerpts from the interview:

Did you expect Tiger Zinda Hai to be so successful?

Well, we have worked really hard. Salman Khan, Katrina and the whole team of Tiger Zinda Hai. We believed in our story. The film’s message is of universal value: humanity is above all. So we were really hopeful about the film. Luckily, it connected.

And how! (The year) 2017 was a year of huge flops and disappointments. Does the success of Tiger Zinda Hai vindicate the box-office supremacy of Salman and your position as a blockbuster director?

What it validates is that if you give the audience what your trailer promises, they will accept it with open arms. My equation with Salman is what the success of the film validates. I think we work well together.

What do you think makes Tiger Zinda Hai so connectible with the audience, specially at a time when all diplomatic efforts to bring India and Pakistan together have failed?

I think the idea of love is universal and peace and brotherhood is the core of our existence.

This is your second blockbuster with Salman Khan after Sultan. Please describe your rapport with him?

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