Sunday, July 29, 2012

Of Overcoming Fear, River of Smoke, And Modern Day Love

So long time no see...

Have been a bit busy for the last few days. As the day comes near, I am getting goosebumps. The feeling has still not sunk in. I am feeling surreal. Pata nahi kya hoga aage..As Shaan wrote brilliantly, chalna akele hain yahan, tanha dil, tanha safar...Mummy is getting emotional day by day :\ I don't know whether I am doing it right or wrong, that time will tell...I have to be positive and will try to be :)

This week I watched Modern Family Season 3 Episode 3. As usual, it was amazing. The 12-year old Luke is just awesome. He is so funny that he keeps his money frozen in the form of ice. So when his sister asks for some money, he says he is not very liquid right now. Heh! But that is not what I am going to talk about. In the episode, Phil tries to cross their porch on a rope. He keeps on trying but always kept on falling as he was never able to balance himself on the rope. Now enters Luke. He sees his dad trying this and says to him, "Maybe that's the problem. Maybe you keep falling because part of you knows that you can fall." And then listening to this, what Phil does is that he raises the height of the rope from the ground so that there is no support to hold back even if he falls. And voila! When he tries to cross this time, he does it. So beautifully they tried to show that if one keeps thinking about the back up options, one would never reach his goal. Sometimes, one needs to have no other options, then you have to do it. The lack of a fall back thing will force you to do it.I loved that episode. Luke has become my favorite character. I was thinking to myself that I have to write about this. But as always, cosmic connection theory came into picture.





I also saw The Dark Knight Rises. It was terrific. I had seen The Dark Knight only recently, about two months back. That one was also brilliant. I don't know about comparisons and all but I simply loved The Dark Knight Rises. The movie dealt with so many themes. Ethics, morality, corporate responsibility (the scene where Miranda Tate says we have built the reactor and it is our responsibility to clean it up), communism (references to the Occupy Wall Street movement where Bane asks people to get back the rights from the rich), heroes (how anyone can be a hero: A hero can be anyone. Even a man doing something as simple and reassuring as putting a coat around a young boy's shoulders, to let him know the world hadn't ended), nuclear warfare, hope, fear and pain. Each scene of the movie has something to say about (such as the prison break-out, reminiscent of the storming of the Bastille). The movie deserves a separate post. But what I found the most interesting part of movie was the Lazarus Pit. The conversations between the doctor and the Batman in the pit were so profound. He tells him the story of the child who was the only one who was able to get out of the pit. And the way child did was the he did not use a rope. He gives the same advice to Batman to try without the rope. Because maybe a part of you knows that the rope is there to hold you back in case you fall. And when you go without the rope, you have nothing to fall back on, so you have to give your best shot as it is a matter of life and death. And this is exactly what the Batman followed. He failed the first time because he had tied the rope but the second time he didn't use the rope. And he literally rose from the pit. That was the essence of the movie - The Dark Knight Rises. Isn't this so similar to what Luke said in Modern Family!! As I was watching this scene in the movie, I immediately thought of Luke. Cosmic connections no? :) Talking of The Dark Knight Rises, it deserves a separate post but Greatbong as always wrote a terrific review of it on his blog. So many insights he talks about. I loved the part where he says how the Batman used fear as a weapon.


The Dark Knight Rises takes it to a glorious conclusion in its greatest sequence,(the only one that I felt truly transcended the narrative), when Bruce Wayne, with his back literally and figuratively broken, ascends the Lazarus Pit of darkness, death and despair towards “light” and “freedom”, ironically by embracing fear again. But fear of a different sort—one that stems not from the instinct of self-preservation (what will happen to me if I fall) but from empathy (what will happen to others if I cannot make it).


There are so many quotes from the movie. "There can be no true despair without hope." "Suffering builds character." It needs repeat viewing :)

These days I am reading Amitav Ghosh's River of Smoke. Each of his book is a lesson in history itself. He writes about the cultures with a meticulous research which leaves one wondering about its detail and exhaustiveness. Whether it is The Calcutta Chromosome or the Sea of Poppies. Brilliant! The way he weaves characters in the story is fantastic. River of Smoke is the second book in the Ibis trilogy. The first being the Sea of Poppies. Sea of Poppies was about how the British started cultivating opium in India. River of Smoke talks about trade of opium with China and the opium wars. He has done such exquisite research on the subject that it is simply unmatched. He talks about how tea came into existence, how Chinese were fascinated by handkerchiefs and thought that the Europeans used it to store their snort, how Hong Kong and Macau were just islands where no body preferred to live, how the name Pearl river was given and so many other facts....fascinating to learn about history with an equally intriguing story. And above all, he writes some lines in pidgin, a simplified language which is used to communicate between two different cultures that do not have a common language. It is extremely difficult to write in pidgin but Amitav has mastered it perfectly. Superb!


And this week on The Front Row, there was a discussion on love. Imtiaz Ali said, "I feel that the modern time that I can see around me has loneliness, it has yearning, it has pining. It’s just that the format or grammar is different. I feel that people do feel very strongly despite the communication network and the fact that they may be able to reach out 25 times in the day does not really mean that they are reaching out still."


Karan Johar said, "Technology has almost killed old world romance. There was a time where writing letters had its own mystery. There was pining, there was love. Today you are on Facebook, you’re on Twitter, you’re on Facetime, you’re on BBM, you’re texting, you’re sms-ing, it’s more annoyance and irritation."

Anupama asked Karan whether Rahul, Anjali or Tina ever had sex? And he said, "Are you mad? No, they never had sex, they just touch once and produce a baby." And then he recounted how a couple had left Kabhi Alvida Na Kehna half way because they were so appalled by the sex scene between Rani and SRK. He added, he will be more comfortable in shooting a sex scene now because the audience has accepted such things.  


Anupama then recommended the DVD of the week - Kabhie Kabhie. She said her favourite character in the film is Vijay Khanna (Shashi Kapoor) who has the maturity and grace to accept his wife once loved someone else. I still haven't seen it but will see it soon. I love Anupama. She is awesome. I want to be a film writer like her.

Also, Sidin Vadukut wrote an excellent piece on movie watching like I wrote about that how audience has become extremely judgemental these days. Read the article here. He says

Thank God movies like Sholay got made years before you lot came on the scene. I can see the Twitter updates and blog posts now.
“Sholay shamelessly promotes vigilantism. And denim suits.”
“Did Thakur first file an FIR with local Ramgarh police? No? Typical.”
“No one can dance on broken glass for that long. Lousy script.”
“Now our children will think it is perfectly normal to climb water towers. Ban this farce now! A concerned parent.”

“This movie is clearly loaded in favour of people with legs.”
So true! So true!

I need help in one thing. For the last two three posts, there is a very weird thing happening. Sometimes when I try to justify a passage, it becomes white and nothing is visible. I don't know why is it happening. Sometimes it works but sometimes it doesn't :(

I have to write about so many things but not getting time to do so. I will try to remember them because I keep thinking that I have to write about this and that..but then forget it very quickly :\

Dialogue of the Day:

"Sanjana, zindagi nikalti jati hai aur hum pyaar ke bina jeena seekh lete hain, kyun hum pyaar ko ek mauka nahi dete, kyun hum khud par vishvaas nahi karte, kyun hum khud se itna darte hain, yeh zindagi nafrat ke liye bahut chhoti hai."
 - Ram, Main Hoon Na

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

..........

Please help me find my inner peace...plagued by lack of a lot of things...

Terribly disturbed and scared....

Would it be too much,
Is it beyond foolishness?
To risk the 'nth' time,
In pursuit of happiness?



Saturday, July 21, 2012

Of Film Criticism...

Last week, Anupama Chopra gave a dazzling review of Cocktail. On The Front Row, she told that it is the best romantic film she has seen since Band Baaja Baraat. Most of the time, I have agreed with her on her reviews and absolutely love her writings. She is my Roger Ebert. My writing style is somewhat inspired (or copied?) from her. But I didn't like Cocktail. I found it extremely boring and stereotypical. After I read the review, I was thinking was it just me who didn't like it? Maybe I didn't understand it. I always avoid reading reviews before watching any film. When I was in Class 11, and it was the time when I actually started watching a lot of movies, I used to read each and every review of the film before I watched any film. After watching about 10-15 films like this, I realized how foolish I am. I was actually stopping my own thinking and clouding my opinion based on someone else's liking. And inevitably as much as the reviewer tries, there would be spoilers. So, how can you enjoy the movie when you know everything before hand? Then I stopped reading reviews altogether before watching any movie. Now, I watch a movie and then read all the reviews. Anupama's Cocktail review had got me puzzled. Just to validate my thinking, I started to find other reviews where reviewers did not like Cocktail. Rediff's Raja Sen hardly likes any movie and I have disagreed with him on so many reviews. He had trashed Guzaarish like anything but I had loved it totally. Now, he again blasted Cocktail and I was nodding my head with each and every line he had written. And I found myself in agreement with a person whom I have never agreed upon. But if there is one review of Cocktail that is making waves everywhere, that is of Rajyashree Sen of First Post. Read it here. http://www.firstpost.com/bollywood/spot-the-slut-the-cocktail-test-for-good-girls-378812.html

I have always believed movie watching to be very personal act. Think about it - a normal person who is imbued with so many personal problems, at the end of a week, would he be willing to watch a movie that makes him sad? The fun he would get from watching Bol Bachchan wouldn't be the same if he watches Guzaarish..no? But the thing is people get extremely judgmental about the choice of films you like. Oh you loved it? How can you love that movie? I loved Aisha but if I say in front of people, I will be accused of being vain, hollow and superficial. Why is that so? I connected with the story. What is the problem if I loved Karthik Calling Karthik or did not enjoy Love Aaj Kal as much as others did. So why am I thinking too much if she loved Cocktail ;-) Maybe it was one of those very few times I disagreed with her :) So each of us are different, so a film that appeals to me might not be as appealing to you.

Over the years, I have also learnt that I find it very difficult to give ratings to movies. Just like people, films are grey. There are somethings you like, somethings you don't. It is very hard to objectify a film into a rating. Because watching films is an emotional experience, and it is extremely difficult to quantify an emotion into a rating. For example, Avatar did not have a great story but the whole experience of watching it was so exhilarating that some people called it the movie that forced people to go back to the cinemas. Rajeev Masand, in his review of Avatar, wrote

Every once in a while comes a film that grabs you by the gut and throws you into an experience so profound that nothing else really matters. These are films that stay with us our entire lives; films that touch both heart and mind; films that make you surrender completely to the power of the experience. It's films like this that make going to the cinema an out-of-the-world experience.

And this week, Greatbong wrote a brilliant article on film criticism highlighting some of the points  that I have been trying to make.

However, when you review movies, the number of labels that may be attached to you is mind-bogglingly diverse — Salman fan-boy, Shah Rukh hater, Aamir lover, Hrithik camp slave, faux-intellectual, overtly-highbrow and so it goes. The only saving grace in my case is that because I am not a professional movie reviewer (which means I don’t get invited to pre-showings or special events), I have not been accused of writing paid reviews. Not yet anyway.


In a way, I understand why people get so frothed up over film reviews. You buy a ticket, go into the darkened theatre and feel a personal connection with what is on screen. It moves you, it makes you laugh, it makes you feel pleased with yourself. You come home, go online or pick up a newspaper and there is this weirdo brutalising that which touched you so deeply. How dare he? Who the hell is this person questioning, in effect, my taste and my intellect? Surely, he must be an idiot (if he isn’t, then I am). No he is biased. That sounds right. He has been bought by “them”. Or he must be a fan of some other star. Maybe, I was correct the first time. He is an imbecile. Otherwise how can this man like Gunda and not No Smoking?

Here is the thing many forget. Movies are evaluated as per the parameters of their genre. For example, the fact that I consider both Deewana Mastana and Dekalog as masterpieces should not be taken as proof of intellectual schizophrenia or of sinister design. It is just that my definition and parameters of ‘enjoyment’ and ‘brilliance’ are context- and content-specific.

In the final analysis though, a review will always be one person’s opinion. Just like any other viewer, a reviewer brings his own biases, preferences, personal history and beliefs to the theatre. And just as a film is the projection of light and shadow on a screen, a ‘review’ is a projection of that film on an individual’s mind. Thus it can never be impartial. Nor can it be expected to be.


Beautiful! I love the way some people write..

And as the first half of 2012 ended (it is July already!), here are some of my best films of 2012.



I loved this movie like anything. Perfectly average...Greatbong makes a fascinating observation about Rahul in his review. He says
I liked “Ek Main Aur Ekk Tu” for the way they develop Imran Khan’s character. In a sequence which I felt was the highlight of the film, the hero rues how mediocre he is in everything, despite his best attempts. What is surprising is that unlike what usually happens, Imran Khan stays average right till the end. He does not “rise” in love like Shahid Kapoor in “Jab We Met”, becoming super-successful in business by selling a calling-card in the name of his lady-love. He does not discover the champion in himself like in “Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi”. Nor does he become a super-photographer like engineering-misfit Madhavan in “Three Idiots”.

In “Ek Main Aur Ekk Tu” only one side (Imran Khan character) falls in love, the other side (the Kareena Kapoor character) does not, the one who does blames the other for leading him on, they resolve their issues, the love still remains unrequited even though they maintain their close relationship.


Too good! How did I not notice this....


Kahaani - although it is very difficult to watch it again, I liked this film a lot. My most favorite character - Rana. The way he falls in love with Vidya...At one point in the film, Vidya asks him his name and he says Satyaki. She says -  Arjun Ka Saarthi. Wow! A perfect name.  Have to read about Satyaki though. Mahabhrata is seriously one of the greatest stories ever told.




Shanghai - Dibakar Bannrjee's political thriller, based on an old film called Z, and adapted with a story on contemporary India. Terrific characters (in one scene, they show Emraan who shoots a C-grade porn films  gets a call from 'Dreemgirl' on his phone....notice the spelling) matched with, as Anupama Chopra writes, Dibakar's knack of finding humor at the least likeliest of places. 


Vicky Donor - Superb first half, great music, great acting. It would be a blasphemy if Diana Penty wins the best debut award over Yami Gautam. Of course, Karan Johar's Student of the Year with three new comers is expected to come out later this year and as it happens in award functions, the producer with the power will get the most awards. Karan Johar, John, or Saif? Who wins here? 



Anurag Kashyap's Gangs of Wasseypur. Trademark Anurag style with excellent characterization, in depth research, whacky music, and  superb performances.

Films that I am eagerly waiting for in the second half of 2012: Barfi, Heroine, Student of The Year, English Vinglish, Shireen Farhad Ki To Nikal Padi, Yash Chopra's Untitled Film, Talaash

Dialogue of the Day:
"Aisa pehli baar hua hai sathra athra saalon me,
andekha anjaana koi aane laga khayalon me,
aankhon ki khidki par ek saaya sa lehrata hai,
dil ke darwaze par koi dastak dekar jaata hai,
gehri gehri kaali aankhen mujhse mujhko poocti hain,
haathon ki lakeeron me ek chehra sa banjaata hai,
uski saanse resham jaisi mere gaalo ko chu jaye,
khushboo uske haathon ki abtak hai mere baalon me,
Aisa pehli baar hua hai sathra athra saalon me...
Andekha anjaana koi aane laga khayalon me.."
 - Simran's Diary, Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Of Cocktail...





Oh! Cocktail. Cocktail is directed by Homi Adajania. There is a question which I love to ask in all my filmi gup-shup sessions. To connect Being Cyrus and Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge. The answer is that Being Cyrus is directed by Homi Adajania, who, is married to Anaita Shroff Adajania. Anaita played the role of Sheena, Simran's friend, in Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge, and also played Geeta, Saif's girlfriend, in Kal Ho Na Ho. And to add more to her achievements, she is also the director of Vogue (India) and has designed costumes for films, such as Love Aaj Kal, Dhoom 2 and Cocktail. Yes, I love such relationship trivia. (There is another one - to connect the Jessical Lal Murder with the TV Show Hip Hip Hurray..keep thinking) But I digress as always. Homi Adajani made the brilliant Being Cyrus. I loved that film...a super cool murder mystery. Ever since I got to know Homi is making his second film (Cocktail) after seven years, I have been eagerly waiting for it. And finally it released this weekend. I remember bunking office last year at the same time to watch a movie first day first show. 15 July - Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara had released. Yes, I bunk office to watch films :) It is exactly a year and was hoping Cocktail to be as good. Ah, I was disappointed with Cocktail. As the super cool Rajyashree Sen tweeted, Cocktail is more like Lassi. Hehe! Written by Imtiaz Ali and his brother Sajid Ali, Cocktail is the story of Gautam (Saif), Veronica (Deepika) and Meera (Diana). Veronica (reference to Archie comics) is the 'rich bitch' as she calls her self and Meera is the homely Indian girl (A name like Betty from Archie won't suit an Indian girl no?). Veronica meets Meera in a loo where she sees Meera crying after her husband duped her in a hoax marriage. So she takes her home. Gautam is the usual flirt types. So, after a meeting at the disco, Gautam sleeps with Veronica and the next thing we know is that they are living together. Of course, the hero's mom turns up and she won't accept the more headstrong girl for a bahu. And somehow by the turn of events, Gautam falls in love with Diana. That is essentially the premise of the film. The first half begins well. It is fresh and sets the pace well. There are some laugh out loud moments, such as the Gautam dancing on Sheela ki Jawani, or the one where Gautam's mom gives a mouth-to-mouth respiration to Veronica. The film is so beautiful..gorgeous people, gorgeous locations..not even a speck of dirt. The problem starts post interval and the film goes downhill using every single cliche that we have seen before. One of the most brilliant and refreshing scenes in the movie was when Gautam, Meera and Veronica are sitting in the kitchen and Gautam says, "You love me. I love her.Yeh Hindi film nahi hai..let's sort it out." The problem is post this scene, Cocktail falls in the same old been there done that trap that it was trying to avoid in the first place. So, you know already who Gautam is going to end with..who will make the sacrifice. Nothing really happens and what we see is an extremely boring second half. The problem that I faced with Cocktail was the lack of emotional investment in characters. I didn't really know or care who should I feel for. Gautam, Veronica or Meera? Even Aisha, a film that has been trashed by all, had some wonderful characters for whom you felt. Remember Shefali? But here you have Gautam, who has slept with umpteen women before, sleeps with Veronica..never believed in love..just one fine day sitting on a beach, he says some cheesy pick up lines and realizes he has fallen in love. Is love that flimsy? Is it that simple to happen? What if he found another pretty girl again? Why can't he marry of his own choice? Why has the girl to be homely? The second half has some useless sequences with such a boring climax speech. No emotions. Also, we never know what exactly happened to Randeep Hooda that he has injuries? Never do we see these people in their office...don't these people work at all?

At one point, Veronica and Meera are having a conversation on how much they like each other and how much they mean to each other..somehow, it felt as if they both have feelings for each other! Veronica, in fact, moved away from Meera, after she realized how uncomfortably close they had become. All the while, I was hoping in the climax, the twist would be Veronica would turn out to be a lesbian! 

Saif looks completely out of place..the role was originally written for Imran Khan but Saif insisted he play it. He looks extremely old for the part looking always red and skin burnt. Diana is very pretty but is just okay but the complete surprise of the film - Deepika. She was awesome. For the first time ever, I have loved Deepika's acting. Watch the scene where she is drunk and says to Meera that she used her and stole Gautam away from her. Deepika was simply fabulous. Totally loved her. Homi creates some brilliant sequences of her loneliness like the one in the pub. Also, she maintains a video diary..loved the concept..and  she finally realizes that she cannot force Gautam to love her...and us usual I love such characters :\ I hope Veronica finds someone who loves her.

Cocktail has terrific music. Though I seriously wish they had kept Arif Lohar's original Jugni from Coke Studio Pakistan. That song is my eternal favorite. The lyrics are so deep and beautiful. Watch the original one here.

Except Jab We Met, I have had issues with Imtiaz's films, especially their female characters - Love Aaj Kal and Rockstar. Though this one is only written by him, I guess, I will add one more to the list.

Dialogue of the Day:

Chad duniya dey janjaal (Remove yourself from worldly concerns)
Kuch ni nibna bandiya naal (There is nothing that you can get from other human beings that you can take to the after-life)
Rakhi saabat sidh amaal (Just keep you actions and intentions pure)

 - Jugni, Arif Lohar, Coke Studio (Pakistan)/Cocktail

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Of Falling, Gangs of Wasseypur, and Insecurities


Hmmm...So as always long time no see!
It is more than a week and I have been at home and done nothing at all.



This week, Barclays and other banks were implicated in rigging the LIBOR rate. LIBOR! I started thinking of office. One of the most common and easiest requests was to find the LIBOR. Just go to Bloomberg and use the BBAM function and take out the data! Simple...and request done and time charged :P But how can anyone rig the LIBOR! It cannot be done by a single bank. LIBOR is decided by the British Banker's Association. So, a lot of more people and many more banks would have been involved...Can't be done by a single person! The BBC showed the public questioning of Barclays CEO, Robert Diamond, by British Parliamentarians! It's fascinating..how once strong people confess and answer uncomfortable questions in public. I wish we, in India, had such a system of public questioning. Imagine Narendra Modi or A Raja giving a testimony in the public! Remember Hansie Cronje's tearful acceptance of match fixing? And how Rupert Murdoch tried to shy away from tough questions though his wife, Wendi Dang, made proceeding more alive by jumping to save him from the attacker. There is something mysterious (or may be sadistic) seeing highly successful fall, maybe because it makes them vulnerable or human just like we all are!

This week I saw three movies - Gangs of Wasseypur (yes, finally!), Teri Meri Kahani and Pyaar Ka Punchnama. Gangs of Wasseypur. I liked the film a lot but I didn't love it. I mean maybe I was expecting too much but the movie is great but found something missing. The film was too long, could have been edited better. Some scenes could have been easily removed. Like the dreamy sequence where Faisal and Mohsina are wearing aviator sunglasses is funny but pointless. Or the Yashpal Sharma dancing on Muqaddar Ka Sikandar. Self indulgent sequences. I felt Sardar Khan couldn't actually invoke the terror in Ramadhir Singh. Teri keh ke lunga was slightly not justified. Why did Sardar agree to a truce between the Quershis and his family? If he was so hell bent on revenge, it was the Quershis who drove his father out. Why no revenge against them? Ramadhir Singh had heard his father wanting to usurp his position, so of course he would get him eliminated. Did he try to find out the truth? Maybe Faisal in Part 2 might be a more convincing act. But what I loved was Richa Chaddha as Nagma Khatoom. Terrific acting. Wonderful character. She compromises and learns to live her life peacefully. Even after what Sardar did to her, she beat the hell out of her kids when she got to know that they took money from Ramadhir Singh. Contrast this with Durga, she marries Sardar all the while knowing he is married. She sleeps with him, gets knocked up and blames Sardar saying she doesn't want to be a 'bacche paida karne ki machine'. I still don't get it. Why did she join Ramadhir Singh's gang to play a part in his murder. She called Sultan and his gang that he has left her place. I mean why? Jealousy? Nagma, on the other hand, was more accommodating. She knew she needed money to live her life. So she accepts whatever Sardar does. At one point she says to Sardar, "tumhe tharak me jana hai to jao, bas kisi ko yahan mat lana. Bahar jaake bezati mat karana. Aur naha ke ana." Watch the scene where she gets to know about Sardar's second wife. Or the one where she says to his son, when they are preparing for Sardar's escape from prison, "hamare bete ho ya us dhai rupaiye vali ra*** ke jahan tumhare bapu muh marte rehte hai." I couldn't stop laughing. Richa Chadha was last seen as Dolly in Oye Lucky Lucky Oye! Too good she is! Fabulous music..I loved Womaniya and Teri Keh Ke Lunga. Of course, it is an Anurag Kashyap film. It needs repeat viewing to understand the finer nuances. Like one of my favourite scenes in the movie was when Sultan comes to Ramadhir Singh's house. Ramadhir Singh calls his wife and she gets very uncomfortable when Sultan, a Muslim, touches her feet. Then she asks her husband if she can bring the food here only as she probably didn't want them to enter their eating area. And she irritatingly calls to her servant, to bring food in 'chini' ke bartan...as she thinks her vessels might get impure on serving to Muslims. It is a very understated and yet such a brilliant scene that shows about this whole Hindu-Muslim divide. That is what makes Anurag a maverick film maker. Anurag also tried to show about Nagma's character through references. She had eventually accepted Sardar's second wife. And just to make up for her loss and divert her mind, she tried to find love in new things, such as new appliances. Like the vacuum cleaner. When she is cleaning the room using it, she repeatedly tells Sardar to get out of the room as it is dirty, maybe a metaphor to just get out the dirt from her life. Or the new refrigerator. When Sardar is speaking to her, she repeatedly ignores his calls and she is simply fascinated by the refrigerator saying "yeh dimaag ko bhi thanda rakhta hai kya" as if she wants to keep her mind cool..away from Sardar. And in the stabbing scene where Sardar kills one of Sultan's men in the streets, there is a poster of Guide in the background. Very subtly trying to show the 1960s! There are so many nuances that I would have missed because the first time you can only concentrate on the story. Needs repeat viewing. The Kyunki Saas Bhi Kabhi bahut Thi or the Khalnayak ring tone..Funny! Even small characters like the Gun salesman are very well written.


Brilliant cinematography! Real life scenes of mining explosions, the Muharram procession, the stinking butcher house..the finger scene..



I loved this scene..:)



Call me elitist or hypocritical but all the while I was watching the movie, I was thinking I hate this reality. I hate this kind of India. I don't want to visit such a place. Why is our India so dark and disturbing! Interestingly, The Hoot carried an article on how Gangs of Wasseypur has been lauded in the English media for its realism but some quarters of Hindi media have lambasted the movie for its very realism. The article here: http://www.thehoot.org/web/storypage/6060-1-1-10-true.html

Writing in Dainik Bhaskar (Goliyon se jyada ghatak gaaliyan, filthy words are deadlier than bullets, 26.06.2012), Jaiprakash Chowksey has incisively attacked the film for the shallowness of its so-called realistic narrative, the hypocrisy of the path-breaking tag being attached to it and the way in which it has reinforced the stereotypes about a part of the Hindi heartland. Demolishing the experimental edifice of the film, Chowksey has remarked: “Anurag Kashyap tamam filmy formulon ka upyog karte hue bhi swyam ko alag batane ki chesta mein haafne lage hain” (Anurag Kashyap is running out of breathe in his effort to appear different while using all the formulae of film- making).

The review in Dainik Bhaskar (26.06.2012) trashed such claims of realistic portrayal and has sarcastically commented: “Yeh ‘yatharthwadi’ filmkaar film ke title me hi kahta hai ki Dhanbad ya Wasseypur mein shooting nahi huee hai!” (This “realist” film-maker says in the titles of the film that the film has not been shot in Dhanbad or Wasseypur!). In fact, Dainik Bhaskar published a photo essay on its website showing the real-reel divide of Wasseypur, a suburban settlement in Dhanbad district. The “reality check” on the movie could also be done with the reports about Wasseypur residents protesting against the gross distortions of the history and culture of their place in the film.

Anurag would be very happy though. His films have sparked a poster war between the Congress and the BJP.



 

I can never imagine Manmohan Singh to be doing this....ever!

Ya..Teri Meri Kahaani..I know it is one of those films which people won't see even if it comes on TV. But I still wanted to see it. It is one of those films where nothing really happens..You can go out of the hall, have a chat and you can easily make out what is going on when you come back.. No conflicts..problems that are not really problems and are resolved at the spur of moment..The only saving grace - some shayari in the 1910 story by Shahid Kapoor...rest the film has no kahaani at all..There were some girls sitting next to me and laughing and drooling like anything on some jokes..I was like why am I not getting amused. Felt old! :D And Pyar Ka Punchnama. I found the girls in this movie extremely irritating specially that Babu one :S The movie was very boring in the second half. Liquid was awesome and the monologue by Rajat is the high point of the movie..So funny the way Liquid used to say and behave with Rajjo :P

I finally enrolled in a photography class. I also went to this exhibition at India Habitat Centre set up by the Delhi Photography Club called Nicefoto. It contains photographs by all amateur photographers like you and I. None of the photo is by an expert. I saw some really good pics. These three are my favourite. What an idea!


This one is titled Kya Hukum Mere Aaka!


Love through Shoe Laces


Heart of Nature...(leaf in a heart!)

I met A from college yesterday. He is one of those persons whom I respect and admire. I wish I could be just 10% like him. He called me to discuss some things. I felt really nice when he called. He is so good at everything. Seriously, I wish I could be like him. And when I was coming back and crossing the road, I saw someone waving at me. It turned out to be R, V's friend! I mean the day I meet someone from college..on that day only, I see someone else from college! What a co-incidence!

I am seriously addicted to Modern Family. I love that show like anything. It is one of the best things ever I have seen on TV. Yesterday, I saw Season 2 Epiosode 23. I don't remember watching anything on TV where I have smiled and laughed during the entire duration of the show. It was about insecurities that we have. How each one of us has our own insecurities. Alex, who stood first in her class, gave a terrific speech. She said


"It’s ironic that I stand up here representing my classmates when they are so awesome, they should be up here themselves but I am up here...I’m saying…stuff, because everybody’s got their…stuff, whether you’re popular or a drama geek or a cheerleader or even a nerd like me. We all have our insecurities. We’re all just trying to figure out who we are. Don’t stop believing. Get this party started."

It's so true when she says we all have insecurities and we are trying to figure who we are. And I remembered writing this about insecurity http://dichotomy-of-irony.blogspot.in/2011/07/of-soulmates-character-books-being.html 

More later!

Dialogue of the Day:

"Rahein jo chuni hain, meri thi raza..
Rehta hun kyun phir khud se hi khafa..
Aisi bhi huyi thi mujhse kya khata..
Tune jo mujhe di jeene ki saza.."
- Kyun Main Jagun, Patiala House