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'Gabru Gang' combines kite-flying action with doses of roller-coaster drama (IANS Rating: ***1/2)

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Mumbai, April 25 (IANS) The passion for cinema and sports runs deep in the veins of every Indian, so can you imagine that if a wonderful mix of films and sports is made, how entertaining it will be for the audience?

Many films have been made in the Hindi cinema world / Bollywood centered around sports. Especially films based on cricket, football, hockey, boxing, badminton and racing have received a lot of love and support from the audience.

Now a new Hindi film ‘Gabru Gang’ has been released and it is based on kite flying. This is the world’s first film around the theme of kite flying. The story of the film is set in the backdrop of Punjab. Abhishek Duhan, also known for his performances in films such as ‘Mandali’, ‘Pataakha’, ‘Veere Ki Wedding’ and ‘Sultan’, has played the lead role in this film very well. And the background music of Amar Mohile provides a new energy to the scenes of the film.

As far as the film’s plot goes, it is very interesting. An eight-year-old boy Rajbir Saluja, along with his two friends Arshad and Uday, wins the first prize in the prestigious kite competition Hi-Fly 1999 and becomes the Number One in Punjab by 2011. The best team, ‘Gabru Gang’, soon becomes everyone’s favourite.

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But fate had something else in store for them, as in 2011, Rajbir loses in the finals to Harry of the Delhi Shehzaade team because his focus shifts from the game to a girl in the final round. Rajbir leaves the game after a fight with Uday and disbands Gabru Gang.

Destiny, however, forces Rajbir to fly kites again, which is the story’s turning point. Hi-Fly 2019 has now become a huge brand and the competition has reached the national level, where 29 teams from 29 states will participate. Gabru Gang will have to fight a long battle unitedly as they have to first defeat all the local teams to represent Punjab in Hi-Fly 2019 Championship and then win the final.

Now, the challenge before Rajbir is that he has to defeat Harry, who had defeated him in 2011. You will have to watch the film to know what happens next in this sports drama. The climax of the film leaves the audience stunned.

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The best part of the film is its interesting plot with drama as well as twists and turns, great music, Amar Mohile’s powerful background score, natural acting by the actors and dialogues that keep the audience glued to their seats.

Aarti Puri has played the character of Bulbul in a very natural way. She has maintained the drama / her acting as per the requirements of the scenes of the film. To be honest, ‘Gabru Gang’ is a magical cinematic experience where along with sportsmanship, many other emotions get awakened too.

Abhishek Duhan has played the main character of Rajbir in the film very well. He has portrayed the emotions of a player perfectly. The rest of the artistes have also presented the game of kite flying in the right way. Director Sameer Khan’s hard work is clearly visible in ever frame.

As a director, Sameer Khan has done complete justice to the story of the film. In it, the balance between sports and emotions has been maintained. After the movie starts, there are no sports scenes seen as per the story for a long time, but later, the director maintains the balance between sports and emotional drama very well till the end of the movie.

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‘Gabru Gang’ is no less than a gift for those who like sports dramas. This film provides a source of entertainment for every age group.

There is a need to make more such movies in Hindi cinema. Kite flying has never been included in the sports category, even though it is actually very interesting, exciting and inspiring.

Film: Gabru Gang Duration: 123 minutes

Director: Sameer Khan Cast: Abhishek Duhan, Srishti Rode, Avtar Gill, Aarti Puri, Abhilash Kumar, Mukesh Bhatt, Kanwalpreet Singh, Brajesh Tiwari

Producers: Ashok Goenka, Aarti Puri, Sameer Khan and Vivek Sinha

IANS Rating: ***1/2

–IANS

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‘All We Imagine as Light’ intimacy co-ordinator Naina Bhan calls Cannes win 'emotional victory’

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Mumbai, May 26 (IANS) Intimacy co-ordinator Naina Bhan is celebrating the historic win of the Payal Kapadia directorial ‘All We Imagine as Light’ at the recently concluded 77th Cannes Film Festival.

‘All We Imagine as Light’ was feted with the ‘Le Grand Prix’ award at the film festival. On Sunday, Naina took to her Instagram and shared a bunch of pictures from the film and behind-the-scenes. She also penned a long note in the caption as she called the film’s win an “emotional victory”.

She wrote: “All We Imagine as Light by Payal Kapadia just won the Jury Prize at the Cannes Grand Prix. This one is an emotional victory. Grateful to be a part of this Indian film that’s made history, as an Intimacy Coordinator. Thanks Divya and Hridu for being so vulnerable and creating absolute magic. Being on set with the team brought me back to why I got into film making in the first place.”

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Naina’s work makes for an important aspect of the film’s narrative during the climactic love-making scene. The scene is shot in a Ratnagiri forest with Divya Prabha, playing a Hindu woman whose parents keep sending her marriage proposals from Kerala, and Hridu Hussain, whose character is a young Muslim man working in the hospital where his beloved works as a nurse.

Naina shared that every member of the cast and crew was immersed and in unison to create the gem of a film.

Naina has earlier worked as an intimacy co-ordinator on Ashim Ahluwalia’s streaming series ‘Class’ which was adapted from the Spanish series ‘Elite’.

She further mentioned: “When I studied and certified for Intimacy Coordination after ‘Class’, it was for the purpose of being able to create safe sets and honest Indian portrayals of intimacy. It means so much that Payal and the entire team were keen on getting an IC on board, and gave me so much space and respect to create.”

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“Thank you @zicdrop @ohshitharshit for always supporting and thinking of me. Thank you for everything. PS that’s the best photo my friend @tanmaydhanania could get of the rolling credits and I appreciate it,” Naina added.

–IANS

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PM Modi congratulates Payal Kapadia and team on historic Cannes win

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Mumbai, May 26 (IANS) Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday congratulated filmmaker Payal Kapadia as she created history at the recently concluded 77th edition of the Cannes Film Festival.

Payal’s film ‘All We Imagine as Light’ was feted with the ‘Le Grand Prix’ award at the film festival. The film’s team, including Payal and actors Chhaya Kadam, Divya Prabha, and Kani Kusruti, attended the Cannes Film Festival to accept the award during the closing ceremony.

Taking to X, PM Modi shared a picture of the happy faces of the film’s team as they accepted the honour at the festival.

He wrote: “India is proud of Payal Kapadia for her historic feat of winning the Grand Prix at the 77th Cannes Film Festival for her work ‘All We Imagine as Light’. An alumnus of FTII, her remarkable talent continues to shine on the global stage, giving a glimpse of the rich creativity in India. This prestigious accolade not only honours her exceptional skills but also inspires a new generation of Indian filmmakers.”

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‘All We Imagine as Light’ became the 1st Indian film in 30 years to compete in the festival’s main competition.

The year 2024 happened to be the best year for Indian talents in a long time at the Cannes Film Festival as Payal Kapadia’s ‘All We Imagine As Light’, ‘Sunflowers Were the First Ones to Know’ by FTII student Chidananda S Naik, and Anasuya Sengupta of ‘The Shameless’ fame won major awards in each of the three competitive sections of the prestigious film festival.

–IANS

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Mouni Roy enjoys beach time and shares pictures from her vacation

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Mumbai, May 26 (IANS) Actress Mouni Roy, who will be soon seen in the upcoming movie ‘The Virgin Tree’, has shared pictures from her dreamy vacation on her social media.

On Sunday, the actress took to her Instagram and shared two posts on her account both from the same location. In the pictures, she could be seen enjoying the serene beauty of a beach in Bali.

She captioned the picture, “Flamenco Sketches off of Miles Davis’ Kind of Blue.”

In the picture, she can be seen hiding her face and showing her palm to the camera as she sizzles in a blue coloured bikini. She wore a light blue coloured printed t-shirt over the bikini.

The actress’s BFF Disha Patani took to the comments section of her post and wrote, “So cuteeee”.

In the other pictures, Mouni wore a stunning red strapless dress with backless detail. She was also seen enjoying some calm moments in an extended sitting area with her girl gang.

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On the work front, the actress was recently seen in the streaming series ‘Showtime’. The series took a deep dive into the world of Bollywood and the production houses. It explored the power struggles and off-camera fights occurring in the backstage areas of the Hindi film industry.

–IANS

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As FTII congratulates ex-student Payal Kapadia, Ali Fazal reminds it of action against her

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Mumbai, May 26 (IANS) Actor Ali Fazal, who is known for ‘Mizrapur’, ‘Fukrey’ franchise and others has slammed the Film and Television Institute of India (FTII), Pune for their double standards on congratulating filmmaker Payal Kapadia, for her historic win at 77th edition of the Cannes Film Festival.

Payal’s film ‘All We Imagine as Light’ has been feted with the ‘Le Grand Prix’ award at the film festival.

On Sunday, the FTII, Payal’s Alma Mater congratulated her and her team on their win.

“It is a moment of pride for FTII as its Alumni create history at Cannes. As we witness a phenomenal year for Indian Cinema at the 77th Cannes Film Festival, FTII cherishes the glorious achievements of its Alumni at this Mega International Stage of Cinema,” they wrote on X.

Ali registered a strong disagreement as he called out FTII. He wrote, “Uhhh… please don’t. Just don’t.”

FTII had earlier initiated disciplinary action against Payal for protesting over the appointment of Gajendra Chauhan as the chairman of the Film & Television Institute of India, Pune back in 2015. The students argued that he didn’t have the credibility, owing to his work in B-movies, to head a premier institution like FTII.

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An FIR was filed against Payal and 34 other students for holding FTII director Prashant Pathrabe captive in his office in 2015.

–IANS

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Aryan Khan heads to Chennai for IPL final after wrapping up debut series

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Mumbai, May 26 (IANS) Bollywood megastar Shah Rukh Khan’s son Aryan Khan is headed to Chennai for the final match between Kolkata Knight Riders and Sunrisers Hyderabad.

On Sunday, Aryan was seen at the Mumbai airport getting his ticket and ID proof checked by airport security.

He will join his father to watch the thrilling contest between Kolkata Knight Riders (KKR) vs Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH). The match is set to be held at the M.A. Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai.

A video shared by a paparazzo shows Aryan arriving at the Mumbai airport as he was accompanied by one of his team members. Once his documents were approved by the airport security, Aryan made his way into the airport. He was spotted shortly after his siblings, Suhana Khan and AbRam Khan were spotted at the airport.

Meanwhile, Aryan is set to make his debut as a director with the upcoming show ‘Stardom’. The six-part series recently wrapped up its filming in Mumbai. The show reportedly features a cameo by an A-list actor, who is touted to play themselves in the series.

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The wrap-up party was hosted in the city and was attended by actor Bobby Deol, who features in the series.

–IANS

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