Calendar Girls

Casts: Akanksha Puri, Avani Modi , Kyra Dutt, Ruhi Singh, Satarupa Pyne
Banner: Mangal Murti Films PVT. LTD., Bhandarkar Entertainment
Director: Madhur Bhandarkar
Producer: Sangeeta Ahir and Madhur Bhandarkar
Writers: Madhur Bhandarkar
Music: Meet Bros Anjjan and Amaal Mallik
Release Date: 25th September 2015
Story line: The film focuses on five girls who hail from different regions of India, and who have been selected to pose for the country's most prestigious annual calendar which is a joint effort between business tycoon Rishabh Kukreja and his photographer friend Timmy Sen. Suhel Seth and Ronit Roy have also played significant role in 'Calendar Girls'. Five new actresses are making their debut in Hindi film industry with 'Calendar Girls'.

Know more about the captain of the Ship, the director: Madhur Bhandarkar is an Indian film director, script writer, and producer. He made his directorial debut with Trishakti.
Madhur Bhandarkar worked as a video cassette delivery boy in Khar, a suburb of Mumbai and delivered video cassettes on bicycle. This gave him access to a large collection of movies and he studied film-making through it.

After working with many film-makers, he made his directorial debut with Trishakti which took more than three years to make and released in 1999. The film had a relatively low key cast and was largely ignored at the box office. After two years he directed Chandni Bar (2001) starring Tabu with a budget of Rs 15 million. The film was critically acclaimed and a box office success, which took Bhandarkar into the top league of filmmakers in Bollywood. He received his first National Award for this film and thereon won National awards for his films Page-3 and Traffic Signal. His movie Fashion (2008) also won National Awards for Best Actress (Priyanka Chopra) and for Best Supporting Actress (Kangana Ranaut). He is known to create realistic films that receive critical acclaim and box office success.
Madhur was awarded the Gangasharan Singh Award (2009) by the HRD Ministry of India; this Presidential Award was given to him for his contribution to Hindi Cinema. Madhur was then conferred PL Deshpande Award a.k.a. Zenith Asia Award for significantly shaping the film making culture in his unique works and he has been described as ‘the Film Maker of the First Decade of the 21st Century’.

The National Film Archive of India preserved Bhandarkar’s films- Chandni Bar, Page-3, Corporate, Traffic Signal, Fashion and Jail- in the Government’s Archival data for Indian Films.
Recently, he received the Raj Kapoor Smriti Award (2014) by the Government of Maharashtra for excellent contribution to Indian Cinema.
In July 2015, Madhur received the TSR TV9 Award for “Bollywood Creative Film Maker”.

My Gut Feel and comments:

“Calendar Girls” seems no different from previous Madhur Bhandarkar directed films. It is stamped with his way of  story telling.
Madhur’s last few offerings “Heroine”, “Dil Toh Baccha Hai Ji” and “Jail” were average movies as they lacked the punch and ex-factor as compared to his earlier movies such as “Page 3”,”Ccorporate” and “Chandani Bar”. Or one can also say that his earlier movies brought an innovating, refreshing style of  storytelling and subjects for the Bollywood audiences. However over the time it has started to appear monotonous and cyclic is nature to the audience. It’s about time for Madhur to evolve as a director and start experimenting with new subjects and more interesting narrations.

One fact that stands out for Madhur is that apart from one or two movies, all his movies managed to recover the cost at box office or have done profitable business. Reason for the same appears to be his business sensibility to keep low budget for all his creations.

I assumed that his last two offerings “Heroine” and “Dil Toh Baccha Hai Ji” were flop however during my research on him I discovered that actually “Heroine” was budgeted at 23crore and did box office collection of 44 Crore’s apart from satellite rights and other means. Similarly “Dil Toh Baccha Hai Ji” was budgeted 22 Crore and managed to earn 31 crore at box office.

Similar to  Mahesh Bhatt camp, Madhur puts deliberate efforts in keeping the production cost low. His concentration is more on the content of the movie, which leads to higher chances of them into commercially viable projects.

“Calendar Girls” is no different. Going by facts mentioned by Madhur in his recent interview, production cost of “Calendar Girls”  is 9 crore. I am sure in today’s scenario of multiple screens , extensive promotions and on top of it extended weekend owing to holiday this Friday, there is a higher chance for it to do decent box office business.

I am giving this movie 2.5 stars out of 5, one day before the release going by my instincts about this movie.

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