articles by Pradeep Menon

Entertainment

Reading Ajay Devgn as a filmmaker: Sophisticated craft in conflict with stale writing; will Runway 34 change that?

Ajay Devgn's previous directorials clearly display the ability that can match his intent to desi-fy his Hollywood influences. It seems he just cannot avoid one consistent pitfall – He appears convinced the Hindi film audience is looking for only star vehicles.

Entertainment

Sonic the Hedgehog 2 movie review: Familiar but fun story of heroes and villains, aimed firmly at kids

Sonic 2 doffs its hat to the MCU so often, that every time Sonic uses one of his rings to open a portal, I half-expect Benedict Wong to step out of it.

Entertainment

Outer Range review: An arty, deliberately opaque sci-fi series impaired by déjà vu elements

Outer Range often gave me the impression of being modelled very much on Netflix's Dark, but targeted at those who may have been unwilling to take all the intellectual and emotional leaps

Entertainment

Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore review – Might just be the best film of the spinoff franchise yet

Jude Law’s Dumbledore meets its match in some measure, in Mads Mikkelsen’s Grindelwald.

Entertainment

The Lost City movie review: Adventure comedy loaded with déjà vu, saved somewhat by Channing Tatum, Sandra Bullock

For a certain kind of mood, one filled with patience, forgiveness and the need to pass a few hours of time, The Lost City might almost be what the doctor ordered.

Entertainment

Slow Horses review: Gary Oldman delivers yet another memorable performance in Apple TV's espionage drama

By the time you have fallen for the plot and the world Slow Horses, you would have fallen for Gary Oldman as well. Or vice-versa.

Entertainment

WeCrashed review: Jared Leto and Anne Hathaway sparkle in this otherwise familiar startup story 

The lead characters' relationship in WeCrashed seems both toxic and endearing at the same time, primarily because of the two actors.

Entertainment

Drive to Survive: Who are the winners and losers from season 4 of Netflix’s Formula 1 series?

This fourth edition of the show, now seemingly a fixture on the F1 calendar mainly to lure in the Americans, is largely tame

Entertainment

The Last Days of Ptolemy Grey review: Samuel L Jackson powers a harsh, an impactful exploration of being Black in America

Travelling the gamut between utterly helpless to invigorated with purpose, Jackson’s turn is moving, endearing and heartbreaking. This will go down as one of Samuel L. Jackson’s best.

Entertainment

Rudra review: Ajay Devgn’s OTT debut is elevated by moody atmosphere, weighed down by lacklustre writing

There’s enough to appreciate in Rudra despite the weak writing, particularly if you’re into the genesis of ultraviolence by screen characters

Entertainment

Severance review: Macabre and charming in equal measure, this show feels like thrilling high art

Severance review: Gorgeously shot, with frames you’re unlikely to forget in a hurry, Severance mixes up moods beautifully; it is hauntingly macabre in some bits, oddly charming in others.

Entertainment

A Thursday movie review: Yami Gautam Dhar's vigilante-hostage thriller is slick but uneven with a polarising message

A Thursday strives to be urgent, relevant and cool, but succeeds only partially, because it stops to make a point far too often.

Entertainment

Death on the Nile movie review: Kenneth Branagh’s star-studded whodunit falls short on intrigue and feel

The template of this film isn’t an unfamiliar one at all - if anything, it is probably just dead in the water.

Entertainment

The Great Indian Murder review: An eccentric mystery show that revels in its pulpy, convoluted, cross-country plot

A few episodes into Disney+ Hotstar’s The Great Indian Murder, I realised that the operative word in the title isn’t ‘murder’, but ‘Indian’.

Entertainment

The Afterparty review: Dave Franco, Tiffany Haddish's comedic whodunit is genre-hopping fun

The Afterparty is both an ode to and a reinvention of the most reliably absorbing of all mystery genres.

Entertainment

As a fan of How I Met Your Mother, why I will find it hard to watch its reboot

How I Met Your Father will either turn out to be an inadequate attempt at capitalising on a fanbase that the show will not actually be relevant to. Or it might turn out to be an unlikely winner, albeit one that is relevant to a whole new generation of fans.

Entertainment

Human review: Convoluted medical thriller show that trips over its own excesses

Shefali Shah would make for a terrific supervillain. Just not this time

Entertainment

The King’s Man movie review: Superspy origin story meets quirky alt-history

The King's Man is made for those that find themselves at the precise intersection of ‘Kingsman fan’ and ‘history nerd’.

Entertainment

Spider-Man: No Way Home movie review: Tingly nostalgia, feel-good drama abound in superhero flick that knows which boxes to tick

No Way Home isn’t competing with other Spider-Man films, but with Avengers: Endgame in that regard. That was a bigger film and perhaps a more satisfying one, but I’d argue this one’s a better film because it remains focussed on Peter Parker/Spider-Man and his baggage.

Entertainment

Chandigarh Kare Aashiqui movie review: A breezy ‘social message’ rom-com that punches well above its weight

Chandigarh Kare Aashiqui is meant to be a light-hearted depiction of a serious subject; and the film approaches its characters and plot exactly that way.