Categories
cinema FRS

FRS: Dragon Blade

So everyone knows what an FRS is right? 

-40: To us, the pandemic has made us seek out the absolute bottom of what Amazon Prime Video barrel had to offer, not that we had really seen the other films, but nothing was as exciting as an epic Chinese film about how Jackie Chan defends the silk road from 100,000 Romans! Yes you read that right. 

+300: To the director who convinced Jackie Chan to invest in a film by telling the above one line, yes Jackie is also the producer, apart from being the action director and action here of the piece. 

-21: Movie does not begin with narration, but with our second favourite irritation, the phrase “based on real events”. We mean…nevermind. 

+67: Jackie Chan plays Captain Huo An of the Silk Route Protection Corps formed in 48BC to maintain peace along the trade route. 

This would mean that he will have film-worthy goals like word peace and mutual anbu. Since this an epic film he will have goals which are unrealistic by even film standards such as “I will unite all the 36 nations who use this silk road kind of thing’ 

+34: Subversion of audience expectation: which is critic-speak for “movie sucks, but cant tell it openly”. If anyone had bought a ticket to Dragon Blade thinking that they would at least get to see Jackie Chan do some fighting, he would be slightly disappointed, because he is part of the peace corps. Which means that he would be preventing other kingdoms from fighting, really. 

-27: Hero beats girl in an altercation, means that the girl will fall in love with him cliche, applicable even to ancient chinese dynasty heroes. 

-32: Hero is peace loving means surely some mentor in a flashback would have told him about the importance of peace, otherwise how da. 

-61.2: Hero, back home from peace corp, we get to know is married to sweet school teacher cliche, teacher says she will work towards race equality etc. This reminded us of the Kajal Agarwal paatu class in Vivegam. 

+78: Movie becomes slightly exciting when John Cusack appears as a Roman General invading a Chinese outpost fort city, but is he really attacking or is he out here for something else? Shhh

-11: If there is a plot involving a kid and Romans in the movie, it is rest assured that the kid is in line to the throne cliche. 

+100: Sandstorm Ex Machina, a sandstorm threatens the whole fight between Jackie Chan and John Cusack and we never get to know who the better fighter is. 

+54: Natpu da! Nanben da mode, these two go into. 

In one conversation involving the difference in Chinese army and Roman army, Jackie Chan says Chinese Army is present only to maintain peace in the world

<crickets> <crickets> 

+56: John Cusack character seems sensible and is motivated by revenge against those who have done bad things to him, Jackie Chan however being the hero is still preaching peace, in short anbu selling. 

-24: Sudden target of building humongous wall within 15 days extremely sudden. 

+101: It’s done, it’s a Sino-Roman joint venture, the scenes in which Jackie’s corps and Cusack’s centurions flex their muscles and engage in a bit of play fighting are the most enjoyable in the film. 

-77.2: But as this is the movies, mutual happiness does not last more than five minutes and there needs to be an even bigger villain who should spoil these guys’ friendship. 

+561: That person is Adrien Brody, whom I have never seen have so much fun in this film, it seems more fun because our hero is straight as an arrow peace loving average anbu seller 

-23: Watch your accents Romans! While John Cusack sticks to his American accent, Adriend Brody is acting as though this is a West End production. No he is really enjoyable. 

+56.4: What’s more enjoyable are the production values and the movie making magic which leads up to the final battle, great stuff guys!

-300: Something, something happens and the movie becomes 300 for a while and it ends quite predictably with all the tribes coming together and peace finally comes to the silk board…we mean silk road. 

Nooooooo!

All are happy. Except Adrien Brody. 

Also if you have seen the film, let us know why this movie was called Dragon Blade again? 

All numbers are incidental and arbitrary, except the facts provided by our data analytics team.

Team FRS

Subam

Categories
cinema FRS

FRS: Penguin (2020)

And we are back! 

So everyone here knows what an FRS is right? Right? 

+2: No narration and we all sigh in relief

-3: Movie begins with a statue by a lake in Kodaikanal,the statue has so much of the art department’s fingerprints on it that none will mistake it for a real statue. Small fail. 

-45: Oho so killer in this movie will wear Charlie Chaplin mask. 

Exclusive extract of excruciating moments from the story discussion room 

“Sir, apparently clowns are very scary, in US and all, children get scared by seeing clowns, they have also made movie based on it recently”

“We should also have clown face villain to creep out audience”

“People will find out…”

“Oh then what’s next to clown…maybe we should try Charlie Chaplin” 

“Wow, done deal” 

“Let’s also add one yellow umbrella so that it becomes very iconic” 

<End of exclusive extract> 

Sorry but lol, we could never associate any kind of fear with the Chaplin Killer, no the music also was not helping, sorry. Also he has a yellow umbrella like a CSK fan and so anyone in Kodai should have spotted him by now. 

-32: Movie is set in Kodaikanal types just because our characters can wear sweaters. Yeah please there are lakes all around Chennai, please summa don’t say lakes and all. 

Also also, we can see this trend in which Amazon is picking up tamil movies for release, both Ponmagal Vandhal and Penguin has the following

✅Female protagonist

✅Movie location is hilltop town

✅Murder and kidnapping involving children

✅Drone shot over car, lake and mountain

✅Sweater people and mist

So if you’re writing and selling to Amazon, have the above somewhere in mind. 

+23: One guy (not telling who) will do one morning call for ten minutes to tell what happened in the life of KeeSu so that audience can catch up, this is also aided by some photographs etc

-23: for that 20 minute intro call, KeeSu will reply with just “miss you too” #hmmzoned 

-80: Heroine goes into flashback mode suddenly so that we can know exactly the things that we need to know to progress with the movie. 

-71.2: Heroine will rapidly tell a penguin story to her kid, so rapid that we are sure that the kid didn’t follow, we were not sure if we should follow it ourselves, later we got to know that it’s not the full story even, then why so speed?

-11:Heroine then comeback to “present day” because someone call her name cliche

+34: Lady doctor gives good advice about pregnancy but of course none of this will be followed by our heroine, points for timely advice being timely. 

+101: Understanding husband is too much understanding 

-53: Kodai police are not going to like this film, especially when the inspector seems to have made the right connection at first. 

-56.9: If it is a slasher film involving a kid, then two definite elements will be there. One kid will be allowed to draw random things and characters will get puzzled over this, also said kid will sing some nursery rhyme. 

Supposedly all this is fresh and spooky. 

-23: Something something happens and we suddenly see ourselves watching Silence of the Lambs, no we mean not that movie within this movie, but something like that. Out of the blue surprise. 

-42: Movie really doesn’t progress beyond a set of characters and since the main slasher is also Charlie Chaplin costumed, most of the genre trappings like setting, sound design and the misty cinematography are not effective. 

So we know where they are going, before they get going. 

Also then they say the movie is about motherhood. Yeah, another addition to our hill-top horror series of films which has been giving diminishing returns. Yeah. 

Team FRS

Subam

Categories
cinema FRS

FRS: Mafia Chapter 1

So you all know what an FRS is right? Right? 

+1: Movie begins with Louis Armstrong singing “What A Wonderful World” in the background, we don’t know why, maybe the movie is about how great the world is, if that is the case we should probably reduce marks.

<Extracted from audio excerpts from FRS Room audio>

……. But then the first point need not be negative…..

……..Only uncles will have such sentiment..maybe we should hire more young writers into the FRS…

…Darn it you kids…

Wait, uncle, that doesn’t mean you will be fired from the FRS writing panel! Not now, we mean. …..

</Extracted from audio excerpts from FRS Room audio>

And now for some….recruitment

Key Skills 

Are you cynical? (Weightage: 80%)

Can you write? (not an actual requirement, weightage 20%)

Are you funny? (not an actual requirement, weightage ***)

Do you believe in the magic of movies? (If yes, DON’T apply please save us some time)

Note 

You will remain anonymous for life

You will receive no privileges

Of course this job does not pay 

Thanks 

-50: Movie’s name is Mafia (now you know how we hate this gangsterism) and that’s not even the scary part, it is accompanied by the words Chapter 1, which means there is more to this…this thing.

-201: Hero’s name is Aryan. But brother’s name is Dilip or something, not Dravid

Lost opportunity is lost.

<crickets chirping> <crickets chirping> 

-31: Hero is a honest narcotics officer cliche

-507: Hero is a honest narcotics officer who narrates his own story cliche. We wish we could cut more for this, but too much obvious narration is obvious in this movie. Very very troubling. Makes you wonder if this movie was produced by GVM

(note: this movie was not produced by GVM) 

+12: Gautham Menon type friendly and understanding father (note: movie not produced by GVM) 

-3.5: Hero’s batchmates also become his teammates at the Narcotics division, but they treat him like superior and not peer; he also like that except with PBS

+5: For everytime PBS is on screen (PBS is Priya Bhavan Shankar for those who didn’t catch our point) 

PBS fans unite! She has a decent role too. 

-48fps: Slow motion overdose with BGM. Heroooooo’s caaaaaaaar stopppppps aaaaannd heeeeerooo gettttttsss oneeeeeeeee shoeeeeeeeeeee out 

It’s actually even slower in the movie. 

Accompanied by Nanananaaaa nanana…type music 

48fps*2: same thing happens for villain too (although we are tired to type like that) 

Makes us wonder if the director thought that the only difference between short film and feature film is the slow motion. By the time, we were done with the movie, we hated slow motion everywhere and we started to think if we should take up running .

Note: all writers worked from their undisclosed location separately and submitted their drafts. WFH is the default for FRS, boys.

Urgh and we hate running. Imagine. 

+12: Director says story and all no need, just hero needs to find villain (actually not so difficult) 

40: Movie falls into the usual trap of suave villain means should wear a coat and have wine glass and listen to some western classic music. 

Usual. 

Also usual slow motion for villain too. Slo-mo while going in a boat, slo-mo while getting out of a private jet.etc, the scenes write themselves (in slow motion)

“How much of build-up is too much build-up? Asked the gym trainer”

+23: Thalaivasal Vijay plays a concerned citizen activist who has made it his life’s mission to bring down drug menace types

-23: Thalaivasal Vijay lives in a big bungalow, totally unlike normal citizen activists, maybe we need to investigate further here. How did he fund his activism? 

-10: Movie becomes cat and mouse for sometime and then suddenly ends, but before it suddenly ends hero and villain will do animal type comparisons to themselves etc 

Hmm, they didn’t use cat and mouse analogy but. 

+15: Ending might be humorous for some.  

All numbers are incidental and arbitrary, except the facts provided by our data analytics team

Subam

Team FRS

Categories
cinema cinema:tamil FRS

FRS: Bigil


So you all know what an FRS is right? Right? 

+2: Movie is without narration. Always a good sign (or so we thought). 

+5: Movie puts itself into porali category immediately as it begins with students protesting against change of the college building from a heritage building to a new building outside the city. (actually in Arakonam).

We feel the government is in the right here, since in-city colleges and their buses actually contribute a lot to city traffic. But of course it is not a Tamil movie, unless it opposes the government.

Even heritage buildings will breathe better without the trouble of students <umm…where are we going with this>

Heil Democracy and all that. 

-41: Predictably politician character is played as a mixture of being clueless and ruthless. Politico uncle orders a riot on protesting students, of course this is what is going to set-up the hero introduction sequence. 

+5: Hero has mastered the art of throwing bijli vedi in a manner that it explodes just before the thug’s face. Also this is a way to wish the audience “Happy Diwali Nanba”

-5: Hero hits at least 20 people within the first 20 % of the movie, means ki you can comfortably say that for the remaining 80 % of the movie any such hitting will be surely tiring and you will not experience any exhilaration. 

-2: If hero is from gully, then surely he must be the most popular guy with all the thaaymaargal’s and kutties love and affection. We will never understand why this is so, apart from the fact that he is the hero.. 

-11: Since it is written in the Kollywood Shaastram, that the  best way to end a semi-comedic intro fight would be to convert into an intro song. We now have an opening song which is shot in all shades of red available. 

-24.5: Yogi Babu is in this movie, that means a “moonji” joke is always around the corner. We have to face it. <We mean…>

+6: It’s not a big hero tamil movie, if it does not have a chief minister reference; althought this seems to be a new virus; such a thing was never said in the Kollywood Shaahstram

-90: Kollywood continues to exploit gansgterism without even for once explaining the mechanics of it. 

-91: Kollywood heroes continue to exploit cooling glasses by wearing them for 90% of the movie, so we can never see them act. 

#ItsNotCoolToWearCoolersAlways

-12: When in hospital, supporting characters will regain consciousness only to reveal entire back story of character. 

-30.8: Surprise! Father of gangster hero is also gangster, but with white hair and all. That’s about it. All pazhaya scenes only. 

+30.8: But he is well meaning gangster, because of course he is played by hero only. 

<Pause for reflection> 

Rayappan believes that his son becoming a national football player will encourage more people to move out of their gully by taking up football. 

While this is an inspiring thought, since there is always only a limited number of people who can be part of a national football side, the idea itself might not scale. 

There is a possibility that those who don’t make it to the national side either return to their rowdy roots or become sports followers on twitter who tweet GOALLLLL while following matches. 

Neither will help the overall ecosystem. 

Rayappan should have thought better. Won’t scale. 

</Pause for reflection> 

-05: No girl in the football team had the slightest doubt that Michael indeed looked like ex Tamilnadu captain Bigil. Because….hmm…

+11: Nayanthara is playing an empowered heroine in a movie about woman empowerment

-11: Empowered heroine does not tell father that she is not interested in marriage right now, this would have cut some 20 minutes of attempts at a comical church wedding. 

-3: Convenient team physiotherapist is extremely convenient (for hero)

-24: When movie transforms into sports movie, so all sports officials transform into villains and hero can become coach. 

+33: For a few minutes we actually thought this would be a women’s empowerment film, points for those minutes.

When issues are watered down so that the hero can take a stand on it, then ultimately the issue only suffers. 

Here in Bigil, while women empowerment is treated with allowable care; director offers no apology for violence and rowdyism.There are at least 300 people being thrown here and there by the hero. 

That rowdyism itself is a threat to women’s safety never occurred to the director. 

Hmm of course, hero is rowdy because rowdy is cool/wants to be etc. 

-33: For a full second half which is supposed to be about the girls, barely their names registered and most don’t have any role or character. 

+6: Director firmly believes that scoring goals is the only aspect of football he will concentrate on. 

-78: Movie relies heavily on stereotypes, but also does some baavla in the name of dismantling them. 

-101: Movie is not over yet. 2 more football matches to go. 

+3: One police station sequence which seems was directed by ARM during Darbar break. 

-5: Director sneaks in outtakes from Adidas ads for SIngapennay song, we hope people found it inspiring, or atleast to do some Diwali sports shoe shopping

<Use code BIGIL50, wherever you want, you never know> 

+5: Everyone in football team is wearing Bigil jersey, but we expected them to turn to camera and say “I am Bigil” like “I am spartacus” , no such luck.

-41.8: A team in full form will suddenly play like they have never played together before in THE FINALS of the tournament, just so our hero can go to locker room and motivate them. 

+11: Hero fulfills everyone’s wishes, including the wishes of his dead father and his father and their friends and their uncles and their gullies and the whole world. 

+32: Hero gets credit for everything by NOT getting credit for everything, wow well played. 

Hmm but..

Haters can hate, because Peace is the answer. Everyone becomes good. Society is happy. World is happy. Sleep well. 

All numbers are incidental and arbitrary, except the facts provided by our data analytics team

Happy Deepavali Nanba.

Subam

Team FRS

Categories
FRS

FRS: Saaho

So you all know what an FRS is right? Right? 

[As all the FRS writers begin to arrive at the writer’s room atop the 55th floor of an undisclosed chennai high rise building…] 

Lool, what chennai high-rise building? You really thought we will give away our location? Nice try. 

-5: Narration, since this is a trilingual we will multiply points by 3 whenever wherever. ( you can do the mental math on this ) 

-10: Usual cinema overdose of gangsters, here of course they run an entire city called Waaji

Maybe their official city song is Waaji Waaji Waaji En Jeevan Sivaji, although no such thing is implied. 

Also also, this movie joins the list of movies which just say people are gangsters without explaining how or what made them turn into gangsters- no explanation of the process- these are important for FRS writers, we believe in detail. 

+15: The contribution of gangsters to Waaji’s economy seems immense, they have a modern city functioning with the best security systems, banks, expressways and what not; maybe someone can do a paper about the economic benefits of letting gangsters run Indian cities, we mean…legitimately. 

+21: The gangster congregation is more like those “Royal Stag- Have I Made It Large” type ad set up and of course we see that the Roy family is going back to India, to take over the country etc 

<Cut to Mumbai> 

+88.97: Hero is here to save another gangster (yes you cannot keep count) from a housing society, he has to reach the top floor within 5 cooker whistles, going from one floor to another but every floor has a different type of monstrous thugs + wild animals he has to overcome. 

Holy mackerel! That’s a full movie right there, like Raid: Redemption meets the Cabin in the Woods. 

Actually this can be a full movie. Should we cut points for director not going further with this idea?

+30: Hero is neither clean shaven or bearded, this intermediate state of facial hair is possibly to satisfy the expectations of both kinds of die hard fans of our hero. 

-23: Clueless Mumbai Police is clueless or like we say in the office “Mumbai Police is not going to like this film” 

+65.21: Although they will be very happy to have Shraddha Kapoor as a special agent <insert appropropriate yet respectable smileys here> 

+5.52: Shraddha here is a special agent because she is special to our hero <wink wink> 

+17: Whenever Bombay police is going to take up a special investigation, they will first set up secret headquarters which has fun start-up office feel, it has foosball, basketball ring, beer cafe, video game parlour and of course graffiti splashed walls (obvious) and before I forget, a shooting range. 

I guess this is done so that the special agents really feel special <wink wink > 

Good initiative by Mumbai Police

-7.3: One person in the special unit’s only job is to pan and scan CCTV footage, we believe that such a limited role will not help in future career paths #wecare

-45: Whenever Shraddha Kapoor meets hero, there will melodious music and slow breeze that will gently animate her hair cliche. 

-20: Mumbai Police still use a random method to allot cases to their policemen. 

<Cuts back to Waaji City> 

-51.8: Everytime we cut back to Waaji City, there is a new set of gangster families and their heads that we need to place within the context of the story, since all of them wear suits and have cheroots in their mouth this memory game became a little difficult. 

The FRS team as usual were innovative to brand everyone with above characteristics as villain and we went ahead with the viewing. 

-8.10: Mega Mafioso death will trigger a succession war and no one in Waaji City knows how to get hold of the wealth cliche

-18.3: Mafioso uncles will have chief economic advisor (their words not mine) but will not have proper succession plan. It’s like one legal document would have prevented this whole film

+41: Mandira Bedi is styled to look like someone from a Gautham Menon film, this we believe is a teaser for next week’s hopeful release. 

-23: Indian Music director still using BWAAANG music for any major moment in the movie without realizing that even Hollywood has moved past BWAANG! 

-95: Waaji, a city infested with gangsters will also have the best in class police tech in the world including jet based police vehicles. 

+23: Imaginative world building: director never gives the audience the time to guess the geographical locations in the movie- one second we are in a Dubai type desert city, next second rainforest, then snowy mountains. 

Buy the ticket. See the world. 

+4: Hero steals time bound tech device which everyone is after and then takes vacation with heroine all over the world. 

Because of course why not. 

+11: Vacation is photographed in great detail for future romance things, this we believe will give a boost to a sub segment in the photography economy called “couple vacation photography” 

Become a vacation photographer. See the world (with a couple). Wink Wink!

-85: That reminds us, where did the comedian Kodandam go? Missing Mumbai police is missing. #MissingInAction

+21: Hero makes punchline based on cricket so that whole of India can react to it. Masterclass. 

-50: Just when you thought you didn’t understand the complexity of the storylines, character will start to recite shloka in sanskrit. #truestory

+200: Director’s noble intention to show many movies in one single movie, I think this is a uniquely telugu director school of thought. 

Multiple storylines. Multiple characters. Multiple twists and turns. But singular focus on hero. 

Made us question if this movie is for real or like made up? 

There too director stumped us by keeping a great song in the proceedings called “unmai ethu? Poi ethu? Sollidu Anbe 

( you see we didn’t do the usual “all songs whenever wherever”, wink wink )

These directors are anticipatory genius. 

A simple feeling of watching at least 23 movies and TV shows for the price of a single ticket. 

A humbling yet exhilarating and uniquely tiring experience.

All numbers are incidental and arbitrary, except the facts provided by our data analytics team

Subam

Team FRS