The Willoughbys Movie Review

The Willoughbys was a Netflix Original Animated Film released in 2020. Unlike any other animated movie, this movie is not all rainbows and unicorns (although rainbows are there, but hardly significant). It is about a dysfunctional family comprised of two self-absorbed parents and four kids with weird, woolly hair. The narrator, Sprinkled with the sarcastic and moody comments, that movie gives the audience a new form of delight, albeit having a sorrowfully dark beginning.

The film begins as the old-fashioned home of the Willoughbys, where the parents are drowning in blind love for each other, depriving their children of the humane necessities at the same time. The eldest child, Tim, is an obedient one, but the same cannot be said about his sister, Jane. Then there are the twins, the Barnabys, with their mushroom heads and quirky unparalleled genius.

One day, an orphan arrives at their door, and she steers the whole course of their lives, but in the right direction. She gives the kids the perfect reasons to abandon their inconsiderate parents and discover the world out of their old-fashioned home. To say that this was an adventure for the kids would be a gross understatement. It was more like a roller-coaster ride for them, with their new adorable nanny is suddenly showing up, their visit to the land of sweets. Also, they are getting separated into new homes with new parents and then, of course, finally getting reunited. However, the one constant throughout the movie was the parents’ cringy, uncontrollable love for each other, which sadly did not prove adequate in the end. My fascination with this movie is linked with the fact that it has a more practical theme than any other animated movie. It’s about a dysfunctional family, which is something most people can connect with the character. But that’s not the point!

The point is, even though it starts with an imperfect family, it indeed ends with a perfect one. So what I got out of the movie is that our choices shape us in more ways than we can imagine. Had those kids decided to abandon the orphan initially, they wouldn’t have got the chance to see what life had in surprise for them. The next thing I liked was that no matter how unconventional their new family was, those kids were happy in the end. So it’s not always the question of perfection. Sometimes happiness is just enough. To conclude, I would like to suggest this movie to everyone, even kids, so that they have an acceptance of imperfection in their lives. This movie depicts a practical scenario in the warm light of adoration, making it a perfect watch for all ages.

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Written by – Tanya Passan

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Does a person have no authority on his life? What if he has no wish to live further? What if he wants to die? Would his wish be granted? Or is there any chance or hope we could save him?  But setting him free isn’t a wise choice? How long we can hold onto that person who doesn’t wants to stay? We can encourage that person to live, to live life happily but we can never enforce it upon him. We can make him happy but if he already is, if he lives his life with high spirits why would he try to end his life?

All these would look comprehensible when you watch the movie ‘Guzaarish.’ A film made by Sanjay Leela Bhansali picturizing the life of a quadriplegic- Ethan Mascarenhas (Played by Hrithik Roshan). A man who garnered name, fame and money lost all these in the wink of an eye but life doesn’t stops. People don’t stop breathing, eating, walking but what if the person can’t walk, can’t movie any part of his body except for his head. Yeah, that’s what his life had become, miserable, so much so that he needed to depend on a person to clean himself, to make him eat, to help him scratch his nose. How much humiliating it becomes when you can’t do the basic things of life, you can’t feel any essence of touch, breeze, water or pain as there’s nothing below your head such was Ethan’s condition but he survived and became the ray of hope for millions going through the same. He’s the one to actually prove when life gives you lemons make lemonade. Even after everything, he started a new journey, wrote a book and became a radio jockey and all these wouldn’t have been possible without the people who supported him during his long-run. His nurse Sophia (Aishwarya Rai) was one of them even after not getting a penny for her service she worked for the last twelve years for Ethan to get better and not lose hope in life. She was more than a nurse to him, a guide, a companion and an ally. He also had an amazing best friend and a friendly doctor.

Life becomes fulfilled when you have such beautiful souls around you but there comes a moment when your life doesn’t seem worthy anymore because there’s nothing more left. How long would you want others to keep their lives on hold and be there for you when you have nothing left to give them and ultimately you feel helpless. Something similar happened to Ethan and after fourteen years of battle he finally chose to die with dignity and free himself from the incomprehensible pain he’s suffering from. He’s decision might hurt his near and dear ones but he understood it’s good to die being happy rather than being alive but dead from inside. If he wanted to die simply he would have committed suicide but he didn’t want to become the wrong example and appealed for euthanasia through his lawyer best friend Devyani Dutta and as an understanding friend, she wanted peace for him hence she fought for him against all the odds. People discouraged and humiliated Ethan for his decision still he was stuck to his decision and finally gained the convenience of the whole nation that after fourteen years of a strong war with life it’s time that he deserves to be released from his pain with dignity.

A man who couldn’t see the outer world as it hurts him by seeing the other people running freely and exploring things, it hurts him that he couldn’t feel the waves of the sea touching his feet, it hurts him that he couldn’t do magic again which was his life. A question may arise in our mind, ‘Can faith in life be restored?’ But what if there’s faith but there’s no means to survive. How long you are going to live for others if you don’t have any hope for yourself? In that case we all would want freedom. Freedom from life, from the helpless faces you look at, which says “There’s no chance of you getting any better.” But to Ethan’s disappointment, his plea of mercy killing wasn’t granted to him. Then the question is who released him from his endless pain- Sophia, whom he married at last giving her the honour of becoming his wife who risked her own life to save Ethan from his merciless life. That’s love- Strong, courageous and beautiful.

Sanjay Leela Bhansali did a splendid job by making a film like ‘Guzaarish’ which covers such a sensitive subject, different from the usual moral “No matter however your life is, live it to the fullest.” At the end it’s your choice if there’s any motive left to live that life. It shows us the courage of Ethan to lead a life like that and coming into terms to end it when he knew there’s literally nothing left. It shows us the struggle of a friend to fight unwillingly for her another friend to end his painful life, it shows us the act of forgiveness that inspite of what your friend did to you, you give the secret of your magic to his son so that he can achieve his dreams.

Written by Sukanya Chanda

Unpaused – ” A tribute to lives during Corona Pandemic” Movie Review

Movie – Unpaused (Movie Review – Spoiler ahead!)
Directors – Tannishtha Chatterjee, Nikkhil Advani, Tannishtha ,
Cast – Gulshan Dev, Saiyami Kher, Richa Chadda, Ishwak Singh, Sumeet Vyas, Lillete Dubey, Rinku Rajguru, Abhishek Banerjee,
Duration – 1 hr 53 min
Release date – 18 December 2020
Language – Hindi

Unpaused Movie Review

“Unpaused” is an anthology of five short stories, each segment directed by different directors. Stories of love, new beginnings, second chances, and a glimmer of hope. Set against the background of Covid 19, this is a tribute to the trials and tribulations of the people during these hard times.
The world stopped all of a sudden and five new stories began.
Each story is woven keeping the background of pandemic which is unique in their own way kept together by a common thread of struggle.

First Story

The first story ‘ Glitch’ starring Gulshan Dev and Saiyami Kher, is dystopian. The storyline is set in 2030 where the virus is the new terrorist who brought humans to their knees and yet the instinct to survive continues. Due to a glitch in the system, the two meet on a virtual date. The story weaves around how they both crave companionship but are unable to meet because Gulshan is a paranoid citizen while Saiyami is a “ frontline warrior”.

Second Story

The second story, “ Apartment” is based upon the mental health of people living in isolation. Devika, played by Richa Chadda suffers from depression after separating from her husband, a celebrated journalist, played by Sumit Vyas accused of sexual assault. At the onset of Janata Curfew, she decided to end her life by hanging from the ceiling. She is rescued by her neighbor, Ishwak Singh. This bittersweet story can make you feel her pain.

Third Story

The third one “ RAT – A – TAT”, is weaved around a 65-year-old lady, Archana, played by Lillete Dubey. The lady who is easily annoyed reluctantly allows a young girl Priyanka, played by Rinku Rajguru to stay in her apartment till the mice which haunted her apartment leaves. This funny yet heartwarming story and the bond between a cranky lady and a cheerful girl will leave you mesmerized.

Fourth Story

The fourth story, “Vishaanu”, focuses on the issue of migrant workers. Geeta and her husband cleverly found a spot in an empty expensive apartment as they try to find a train back to their hometown during the lockdown. Perfectly executed, this will spellbind your mind.

Fifth Story

The fifth story, Chaand Mubarak”, is based on the threatened life of senior citizens buying groceries and medicines during the lockdown. Uma, played by the legendary Ratna Pathak Shah, finds solace in Rafiq, an auto driver who goes out of his way to help her.
The stories bind together emotions of love, pain, loneliness, companionship, and above all, hope.
This movie is highly recommended to watch.

If you have watched the movie Unpaused, do give your review in our comment section.

You can watch the movie on Amazon Prime Video

Written by – Nandita Samanta

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