Akshay Kumar and Vaani Kapoor starrer Bell Bottom that hit the screens on Thursday became one of the first big-budget films to release in theatres post the second wave of Covid-19. The film managed to collect Rs 2.50 crore – Rs 2.75 crore on its opening day.
According to analysts, the espionage thriller’s performance, especially over the weekend, is an indicator of whether the audience is willing to return to cinema halls that have remain shut for most part since March 2020.
As films like Bell Bottom and Telugu-language film Paagal, featuring actors Vishwak Sen and Nivetha Pethuraj chose the theatrical route, several films continued to release on OTT platforms over last week.
Silverscreen India brings to you, a compilation of reviews of the major releases from last week.
#Home (Amazon Prime Video)
#Home, the Malayalam-language film that released on Amazon Prime Video last week features actors Indrans, Sreenath Bhasi, Vijay Babu, Manju Pillai, Neslin, Pauly Wilson, and Anoop Menon. As per the official synopsis, the film follows a “humble but technologically-challenged old man, Oliver (essayed by Indrans), who constantly strives to remain close with his two sons, who are hooked to social media like any other millennial.”
Speaking to Chandhini R of Silverscreen India, director Rojin Thomas said that the film reflects bits of his life from when he taught his father to use a mobile phone.
While the film seems to have garnered positive reviews from the audience with an average IMDb user rating of 9.2, it fell flat with the critics.
Aswathy Gopalakrishnan of Silverscreen India writes about #Home “It is all-pervasive, dictating the viewer’s emotional response in every scene, drowning the characters in a mindless mush and turning the conflicts they face in everyday life into highly processed Instagram stories.”
Baradwaj Rangan of Film Companion agrees and calls the film “a big missed opportunity.”
Despite being a ray of hope for theatre owners across the country, Kumar’s third film as a spy has received mixed reviews from the critics as well as the audience.
Bell Bottom follows a covert operation taken up by Research & Analysis Wing (RAW) agent Anshul Malhotra (played by Kumar), to rescue Indians aboard a hijacked flight, during the 1970s.
Tatsam Mukherjee of Firstpost calls it a “lazy commercial film” that “hides its bigotry behind the veil of entertainment.”
Suchin Mehrotra of Film Companion, meanwhile, calls Bell Bottom a “decently-executed and coherent film.”
The film currently has an IMDb rating of 6.9.
Jason Momoa-starrer Sweet Girl and Sandra Oh’s comedy drama series, The Chair released on Netflix, last week. Sweet Girl currently has a rating of 5.5 on IMDb while Oh’s show has garnered a 7.2 rating. Nicole Kidman and Melissa McCarthy starrer Nine Perfect Strangers on Amazon Prime Video, meanwhile, has a current IMDb rating of 7.5.
The tug-of-war between theatres and OTTs continues in India with Sai Pallavi and Naga Chaitanya‘s upcoming Telugu film Love Story, set to release in theatres on September 10, and Aishwarya Rajessh‘s Boomika set to release on Netflix on August 23.