Monday, May 31, 2004
Ayitha Ezhuththu was okie types..
An evening show at the Prarthana Open Air Theatre. Movie - Ayitha Ezhuththu. Expectations - Very High. Result - Disappointment in proportion direct to expectations.
Manirathnam has enjoyed creating this novel on screen. But what an average movie-goer who looks at entertainment value for his money, expects of a Manirathnam creation is a tad different. The movie looked more like a lift and join of ideas from his previous movies - Roja, Alaipayuthe, Nayakan, Mouna Ragam. But what we expect of Manirathnam is freshness, novelty, creativity at its zenith.
The movie appears a bit disjointed at some places and keeps coming back to the Napier Bridge scene, taking us back to the restless Maddy in Alaipayuthe. We have admired Mani's picturisation of songs so much over his past movies. But in AKK, except for "Fanaa", none of the other songs stand out. After the likes of "Pachchai Nirame" and "Kaadhal Sadugudu", AKK's "Unmai Sonnaal Nesippaayaa" is a big let down. Sidhdhaarth and Trisha remind us of Maddy and Shalini, while Surya and Esha's romantic encounters are reminiscent of Arvindswamy and Madhoo in Roja. The dialogues were pretty predictable, especially the ones between Sidhdhaarth and his father. Again, its probably because we are so accustomed to Mani's style that his dialogues have become kind of refrains and are etched in our minds forever.
Here are the positives - the cast, Surya's character sketch, Rahman's music and...and...well, am thinking hard but can't think of anything else. I liked Main Hoon Na better.
Posted by Bharani - 10:29 am -
Friday, May 14, 2004
We watched Main Hoon Na over a weekend. Miraculously landing the tickets for a movie that was houseful for two days in advance, we were sort of destined to watch it that day. This post is kinda late for the movie that we watched two weeks back. But nevertheless, here are my two cents.
Main Hoon Na was a sweet entertainer. For those of us who were disappointed with Kal Ho Na Ho, Main Hoon Na is a real make over. The story see-saws between serious terrorist activities and a happy college environ. Shah Rukh as Ram Prasad Sharma is an impressive army Major. Sushmitha Sen makes the role of a Chemistry teacher formidable. The use of Matrix stunts has kind of become a routine in Indian movies these days, but still makes enjoyable viewing. While Amrita Rao as Sanjana is refreshing and Kiron Kher as the mother is dignified for the role, the one who steals the scenes and our hearts at the end is Zayed Khan. He was simply marvellous. He comes across as a damn damn cute, jolly-go-lucky Laxman Prasad Sharma aka Lucky. He epitomises Generation Next as perfect IBCds - Indian Born yet Confused Desis. Shah Rukh and Zayed's interactions in the college are awesome and so were the comical sequences involving Sathish Shah and Booman Irani.
If something was on the flip side, it was Sunil Shetty's acting. Was it purposefully downplayed that way or not, I am not sure. But I was tending to contrast his performance with Ajay Devgun in Khakee and that made it look all the more miserable I guess.
Otherwise, its a great movie. Just go and watch it. Its 100% fun.
Posted by Bharani - 03:24 pm -
Monday, May 10, 2004
Sunset time for Election fever. With an impressive branding/campaigning strategy, the NDA has imprinted the India Shining and Rath Yathra on our minds. Now time, oops, the count alone will tell water for water and milk for milk (dont mind the poor joke, cudn't stop myself from cracking that).
Sunset time for Cricket fever. Atleast momentarily. With the boys bringing home the cup from our cordial neighbours and all the ooh-aahing over now, this one more passion of the nation has slightly subsided now.
So whats up ? What do we all look forward to now ? What else - ManiRathnam's most eagerly awaited flick - Yuva aka Ayudha Ezhuthu, Of Course !
Posted by Bharani - 10:30 pm -
Monday, April 19, 2004
When I read Herman Hesses's Sidhdhartha,
it wasn't much of an influence on me or my psyche. It was just another story of just another worthwhile seeker of truth. That was it. But I guess somewhere deep inside, it has made an impact. This impact probably got buried under the constant and petty chatter of the intellectual mind, which endlessly scouts for rationale and evidence.
Of late, this obscured impression in my mind has started surfacing. I realise what experiences can do to our perceptions. While our parents were content with believing and living in the words of elders, our generation chooses to experience first and believe next. This is exactly why 'Sidhdhartha' did not impress me before. And this is exactly why 'Sidhdhartha' refuses to leave my memory now.
I had then jotted down some sentences from 'Sidhdhartha', not for the intensity or profundity of the philosophy that it discusses, but for the literary depth and the summarizing effect that it had. I then felt that it was not my experience and I was no one to endorse it. But now, I just feel like sharing those words out here. Again, words cannot describe emotions quite well, but still Herman Hesse has really bought out few truths in simple language. The value of any knowledge, I feel is significant only after its experience.
The Excerpts -
** A goal stood before Siddhartha, a single goal: to become empty, empty of thirst, empty of wishing, empty of dreams, empty of joy and sorrow. Dead to himself, not to be a self any more, to find tranquility with an emptied heart, to be open to miracles in unselfish thoughts, that was his goal. **
** What is meditation? What is leaving one's body? What is fasting? What is holding one's breath? It is fleeing from the self, it is a short escape of the agony of being a self, it is a short numbing of the senses against the pain and the pointlessness of life. **
** He saw: this water ran and ran, incessantly it ran, and was nevertheless always there, was always an at all times the same and yet new in every moment! **
** "This," he said playing with it, "is a stone, and will, after a certain time, perhaps turn into soil, and will turn from soil into a plant or animal or human being. In the past, I would have said: This stone is just a stone, it is worthless, it belongs to the world of the Maya; but because it might be able to become also a human being and a spirit in the cycle of transformations, therefore I also grant it importance. Thus, I would perhaps have thought in the past. But today I think: this stone is a stone, it is also animal, it is also god, it is also Buddha, I do not venerate and love it because it could turn into this or that, but rather because it is already and always everything - and it is this very fact, that it is a stone, that it appears to me now and today as a stone, this is why I love it and see worth and purpose in each of its veins and cavities, in the yellow, in the gray, in the hardness, in the sound it makes when I knock at it, in the dryness or wetness of its surface. There are stones which feel like oil or soap, and others like leaves, others like sand, and every one is special and prays the Om in its own way, each one is Brahman, but simultaneously and just as much it is a stone, is oily or juicy, and this is this very fact which I like and regard as wonderful and worthy of worship.--But let me speak no more of this. The words are not good for the secret meaning, Everything always becomes a bit different, as soon as it is put into words, gets distorted a bit, a bit silly--yes, and this is also very good, and I like it a lot, I also very much agree with this, that this what is one man's treasure and wisdom always sounds like foolishness to another person." **
Posted by Bharani - 02:34 pm -
Thursday, April 15, 2004
Fleeting thoughts, fleeting emotions
Fleeting people, fleeting convictions
Fleeting ideas, fleeting impressions
Fleeting habits, fleeting opinions
Fleeting relations, fleeting appearances
Fleeting places, fleeting circumstances
Fleeting comments, fleeting strifes
Fleeting world, a fleeting life.
Why agonise on what transpired today
Tomorrow does not know what today I say
When a bright new world dawns tomorrow
It ushers in more grace, new joy, fresh sorrow
With change innate in every new instant
The past, the future are hazy and distant
With this very moment that melts into the next
Let my mind surrender to a tranquil rest
What is now will soon be was
So, I'll never lose heart for this will also pass.
Posted by Bharani - 02:08 pm -
Thursday, April 01, 2004
I watched Malini Iyer on Sahara Entertainment last week. You know what ? I actually liked the episode. And you know why ? Because I am bored with the junk that Ekta Kapoor's K-series soaps are churning out. Apart from the seasonal and festival flavour that these soaps share by way of Holi, Diwali celebrations, Valentine's Day parties, and so on, these soaps also use similar plots most of the time. Here's one instance - I watch Kasautti Zindagi Ki on Star Plus and Kkusum on Sony. In Kkusum, Abhay, under the intoxication of Bhaang expresses his thoughts to Maayee, mistaking her for Kkusum. And in Kasautti, Anuraag does the same thing. He mistakes Aparna for Prerna and rants out to his heart's content. And this re-use of plots, necessitated by the dearth of creativity makes it too conspicuous that they have run out of material to carry the story forward. Now, here are some of those stereotyped techniques used like dictums in K-Series soaps when they run out of ideas to take the story further (which they invariably do) -
1. Kill an important character, thereby trying to paint an illusorily major twist to the story
2. Force in a new character who will be a pivot to the story going forward.
3. Fast forward the story by eight to eighteen years, so that the next generation is available to create some material for the story. And in between these, hide a lot of truths about who the father is, who the mother is, etc so that deciphering all that would give enough time to think about the storyline.
I stopped watching Des Mein Nikla Hoga Chaand and Sanjeevani after not being able to withstand the crap that they were churning out. Well, I don't mind being fooled as long as I don't realise that I am being fooled ! :-)
And that is why Malini Iyer comes as a breath of freshly perfumed air. It has Sridevi's typical over-action and her Madi Saar does not gel with the rest of the scene. She speaks an unnaturally accented mocked up Iyer tamil and is overly decked up for a normal day. But still the attempt is novel and more importantly, there is a new story every week.
Posted by Bharani - 09:04 am -
Wednesday, March 10, 2004
Oh my ! The guest blogging concept has really caught on! I've got an unexpected, pleasant entry for my Friendly Posts Series. I think I should let the post do the talking. Here's the entry from Dmchn - BLOGGING
Blogging..Well this was something that I never really understood as to why people do it and what they gain out of it.. I have been reading blogs for quite a while but I never gave it a serious thought. I always thought its generally done by some jobless people who try to think about innovative ideas to pass time until I started reading blogs of an old friend. The other day I noticed that she has started the concept of friendship blogging. It seemed pretty imaginative so I thought may be I should pen down my thoughts and let her know how my view about blogging has changed after I read her blogs. I used to think blog was Blabbering Log of Nonsense but never thought it can be a means of expressing onself. Sometime back this friend has written a blog on Tomatoes. If I would have read without knowing the author behind it, I would have laughed it away thinking 'Hey whats this crap about Tomatoes and Onions !! Thank God they did not write about Pine Apples and Jack Fruit !(The car would have a torrid time getting over them)' But having known a little about this friend, I realised that she was expressing a thought that came to her mind. It may be silly but nervethless expressing them in meaningful words counts a lot. Each one of us have our own private thoughts and views which we would like to express but sometimes dont do it for lack of avenues to do so. Blogging is a good means of expressing out ourselves. It gives one the added advantage of anonymity. All, in all I do believe that blogging is indeed a serious habit and not as dumb as I thought. Now a days I do read blogs with a different perspective. I realise that behind the write up of each person, there is some thought that they wanted to share or express. This probably is my first and last blog entry (I am one of those guys who likes to share things with only close friends) but I would like to dedicate this small write up to this friend and all her fellow bloggers.
Posted by Bharani - 08:53 am -
Thursday, March 04, 2004
Ooooh....here's my little brother's post. Well, as a cute, responsible, affectionate elder sister, I am always an amazing inspiration and endless guidance to you, ain't I Rammy ?? No, don't give me an answer. I know what you'd say. But still you'll have to confess that you dedicate every web project of yours to me, the one and only me, who taught you the basics of HTML. He he he he. (*Major Show-Off*)
Okie guys, here's Rammy and his wonderful post -
It was just the other day when I was watching The Matrix for what could be the 25th time. As I reflected on the movie, I noticed certain interesting revelations I had. The Matrix has some subtle religious inclinations which are worth a mention.
The movie portrays humans as slaves connected by wires to The Matrix. All that a person feels, smells, hears and sees is just make-believe. Electrical signals that go into your brain to give you an illusion of what is happening around. As one of the characters puts it – “It is the world that has been pulled over your eyes”. Interesting insight about the illusionary world a parallel which we refer to as Maya. Hinduism considers the world in which we live as a projection of God and unreal. It is unreal because it hides the Truth and shows us things that lead to our ignorance.
In the third installment of the movie we see an Indian gentleman who goes to great lengths to save his daughter and take her out of The Matrix. It is a risky business, but he goes on with it. Justifying that he says 'what he had to do was what he was doing' as it was karma. Neo asks him, “You believe in karma?” “Karma is a word, a way of saying, ‘What I must do.’” is his reply.
Another “coincidence” is the fact that in the first movie Neo is resurrected after 72 seconds, similar to 72 hrs after which Jesus was resurrected. And religions are not just restricted to Hinduism and Christianity. Zion is a direct reference to the Judean ideal of a spiritual and social utopia. Morpheus also seems to play the role of a Buddhist spiritual guide and Neo could himself be seen as the Buddha, staying within the Matrix to enlighten the unenlightened.The Oracle, who is all perceiving and all knowing, gives an apt advice to Neo when he is asked whether he believes he is the One. She points to a board in her kitchen on which “Know Thyself” is written in Latin. Worthy advice, I must say. Knowing oneself is the most important thing in achieving one’s goal. Back to the first movie, during the training, where Morpheus “fights” Neo. He tells Neo – “You are faster than this. Don’t think you are. Know you are”. The same applies to all of us. Lacking in confidence on our own skills and capabilities, we shy away from achieving great things that we can achieve. All that stops you from taking on the world is the mental roadblock that you have set up for yourself. Run it down, you are faster, stronger and greater than you think you are.
Posted by Bharani - 09:37 am -
Wednesday, March 03, 2004
We've never met till today. We became friends over the telephone. We were working with the same organisation and I was at the Madras office while he was at the Bombay office. Now GBG is at Bangalore with his family. He has a very sweet son called Palash. And he's damn good at penning Hindi Poetries. Now, this goes to prove again what I said before - you never know where and how you make lasting friends. Okie, here's a post from him -
LIMITS IN LIFE
A Sanskrit saying goes - "Athi Sarvasva Varjate". In other words "Anything in excess is always Dangerous". For example, confidence in excess is over-confidence which is dangerous. Expense in excess will lead to no-money situation. Eating in excess is dangerous to health. Thinking deeper, we can apply this thought to every aspect of our life. There is always a Limit for everything. Even Success has also got a Limit. Success in excess can not be handled properly and may lead to immediate down slide. Applying limits doesn't mean giving up progress. If applied with little innovation, limits can be used as check points after completion of each milestone of our goals. This will give us some breathing space and also provide with time for introspection. There is no point achieving everything and not able to enjoy that. Achievement in excess may lead to this kind of situation. A Limit is required here as well. There is no-limit to desire. But there is always a limit to the self. Some lines from Shri Atal Bihari Bajpai's famous poem -
"PRITHVI LAKHON VARSH PURAANI, JEEVAN EK ANANTH KAHAANI,
PER TAN KI APNI SEEMAYEIN, YADYAPI SAU SHARANO KI VAANI.
ITNAA KAAFI HAI ANTIM DASTAK PER KHUD DARVAZAA KHOLE,
APNE HI MAN SE KUCH BOLE.......APNE HI MAN SE KUCH BOLE......."
Posted by Bharani - 09:23 am -
Tuesday, March 02, 2004
It was about FRIENDS yesterday, the most apt topic to start with when my friends are guest-blogging here. Today's post is from a friend since college. He hasn't mentioned if he wishes to be anonymous or not - and so I use this chance (*wicked grin*) to expose his anonymity. Dear fellow bloggers, put your hands together for today's scape-goat, oops, guest-blogger - HARISH...Harish...harish (*echo effect*)
On a rather serious note - thanks a ton Harish. (*seriously grateful*)
When I was asked to write a blog entry(which apparently is a short for weB LOG entry & I didn’t know about it until recently…), I had to rake my brains trying to come up with a topic. That was the instant when it struck(don’t know from where) me, why not write about “Writing”.
To transform those train of thoughts, travelling at a speed faster than that of light, to words in a manner that it is discernible, involves some processing power, which I feel can be achieved only by the brain (at this point, I am tempted to digress and write about brain..which I think I shall save for later).
How many times has this happened to u? U read a novel/fiction that is gripping…u find out that a movie is made based on the novel …..u watch that movie and come out with a sense of disappointment… This happens to me a lot… When I read something that is presented in words…I create my own sketch of the characters and interpretations of the situations which being different from the one presented by director turns out to be the cause for that disappointment.
The great epics…Ramayana…Rig/Atharvana/Yejur/Sam veda..Leo Tolstoy…. languages used for writing…media….ink…stylus…styles…ideas…morals…..authors….illustrations….presentation…Jeffery Archer...getting lost…Wondering what the hell is going on ? These are some of the thoughts that are currently running through my mind. Believe me, there was a lot more, but this is what I could process quick enough to record.
Thinking about those people who have that gift to wield their pen, I really feel envious. Those are the people who have the capability to think as well as the abilty to present them so beautifully that it instigates/stimulates the Left side Brain of an unimaginative non-thinker like myself. ….How I wish I could be one of those.
Talking about the different styles of writing, I would like to list some of them,
1. Authors of fictions, present a plot in a way it creates visual images in the mind of the reader.
2. (Auto-)Biographers, ability to present the life of a human is descriptive manner
3. Authors of Non-Fictions, this I think is one of the difficult writing, to write about an idea, particularly if it is an obtuse one.
I am sure there are atleast a gazillion more than what I have mentioned…I would really appreciate if the readers can think of more and post it…..i surmise it will be quite educative and interesting……Think about it…
By jove, writing is hard….i thought I could just scribble a few words….but here I seem to be stumbling for words to present an idea…..i would really love to spend more time to present more of my thoughts…but u see, the insurmountable pressure from a friend of mine to e-mail my blog entry to her is the cause for such a short, insipid display……..no just kidding…it was me…however…would love if atleast a few of them would continue to think about it and post more on this….
Posted by Bharani - 09:23 am -