Wednesday, April 27, 2005

Life's a vampire

Life's a vampire and it completely sucks!

Tuesday, April 26, 2005

Footloose Blues - II

(Continued from previous post...)

A couple of my gal pals, who were with us on Saturday, used the word dandanakka (seemingly condescendingly) a couple of times to refer to the Tamil and Telugu songs that I mentioned earlier. I don't blame them. That's just their opinion. But then again, what is it that prevents us from putting quality music from the urban spreads of South India alongside what a fat 40 something (read Daler Mehendi) or a sure shot winner of the "Stevie Wonder" look alike contest in Vegas (Sukhbir, for all you young kids who are unsure about who Stevie Wonder is) dishes out from a studio in rural Rohtak or the ghettos in Southall?

Personal preferences do matter !
For me, the images (and the ease of the steps used) from a particular video are the catalysts to my liking the track. And some artistes seem to inspire me repeatedly. Deva (in particular his gaana songs) is one of my favorites. And being a Thalaivar fan, I put his intro songs in the same plane as Deva's gaana. I am known to do a mean impression of Thalaivar in his intro songs in Arunachalam and Baasha. Sequences choreographed by Raju Sundaram (and Prabhudeva to a certain extent) are also close to my heart (and my feet).

Does sex play a role ?
Most "footloose" guys that I know have no qualms in dancing to these songs. So is it just possible that the repulsive mental images (1) that Tamil and Telugu songs sometimes leave with ladies are preventing the adoption of these tracks when it comes to the dance floor?

Do lyrics / video choreography matter ?
A lot of us seem to relate such songs with outrageous lyrics. I am not sure, but I think the lyrics part is over rated. There are songs that fit this profile, for example, the outrageously worded Thunda Kanum, Thuniya Kanum, Thooki Paatha.. (all you Tamil speaking junta should thank god that I haven't gone ahead and given the whole line), but in actuality, most of these songs have very simple lyrics with colloquial language that everybody can understand. No more hunting for a Tamil dictionary to decipher what "attraith thingal annilavil netriththarala neervadiya kotrappoigai aadiyaval neeyaa" means. On the contrary, even someone like me, with just the rudimentary knowledge of pure Tamil can understand "Kandhan irukkum idam kandha thottam, enga annan irukkum idam Poes Thottam" and also can dance to it! And it seems to me that it is only those people who swear by Marshall Mathers, who raise their eyebrows at the likes of Thunda Kanum.

Go figure! As for choreography, again, it is very simple and sometimes such songs can involve intricate choreography to tell you things that you don't expect to see. For example, you can check out the video for Kathadikidhu Kathadikidhu (from Ninaivirrukum Varai). Just when you think you are seeing a dozen guys gyrating under the influence of IMFL (and water), you see a carefully choreographed depiction of the abduction of Seetha by Ravana, straight from the Ramayana! Now, if that's not poeticism, what is?

There could be one more possible reason for the bias. But it is perhaps the most touchy. Some people that I know claim that there is a distinct bias against everything South Indian. People claim that Hindi speaking Indians look down upon South Indians (as evidence they point to the typical "stupid South Indian" character made popular by the likes of Mehmood in Bollywood) and this has led to same bias against "Madrasi" tracks. While I think that some of this might be true, but it certainly does not seem to be the case completely. And that is because I know some people (as does CM) from Chennai and elsewhere in South India who that think anybody who professes a liking for Deva's gaana, are pariahs. So, the condescending attitude is not limited only to people from North India.

In the real world, can anything be attributed to one single reason? There is always more than one reason. Suderman has been talking about looking at this issue from the journalist's point of view and I am looking forward to seeing if he comes up with any angles.

But one thing is sure. There is a niche in the market for South Indian music that is virtually untouched - Remixes. I know the remix industry thrives on Bhangra and Hindi tracks (from the 60s, 70s and the 80s). Would remixing some South Indian tracks would help to give them a more international flavor, like the infusion of reggae and rap interludes in Punjabi tracks has done?But it needs two things - A DJ who loves "dandanaka" music (and thinks he can do something positive with it) and an adventurous music company with money to burn. Mebbe the time's not far away when both these things happen. I certainly am waiting for the day that I shall listen to Deva crooning Whitu Lagaan Kozhi with techno beats accompanying it.

My advice to everyone is - forget the language, forget the lyrics, channel your concentration on to the accompanying beats and I am sure you will wanna start moving your legs. Though my father might not approve of such songs, he would not approve of Snoop "Doggy" Dee Ohh Double G either. So if you wanna say that Deva churns out offensive songs, think twice when you sing along with Eminem. And if you think you'd like to dance to Usher's Yeah (Hell yeah, Usher rocks!), try dancing to Thottu Thottu Pesum Sultana. I am sure you will have the same fun. And ya, before you start, you might wanna take some lessons on moving to such songs. But, don't worry. It's not too much trouble. I'd enjoy teaching you (particularly if you are a lady). So do you think you are upto it? Tell me when you are.

And when you are ready, I hope to start hearing more and more of these songs played by DJs.
Till such time, I will be content watching Simran grind and roll her hips in tune to Aal Thotta Bhoopathi. I am not complaining at all. And neither will you, once you get to watch the video. And that is partly why I go to temples once in a while, to thank Him for his divine deeds.

(Concluded)

[1] For example, the midriff barring costume of Simran in Aatakavala and the gyrations from Chaaya Singh / Dhanush in Manmadha Raasa

Monday, April 25, 2005

Footloose Blues - I

I am still sore in a lot of places from all the hip rolling, leg lifting, foot stomping, no to mention the pelvic thrusts and thumb licking from Saturday night. Ya, I did say thumb licking and I should have added "self tilak lagao-fying" immediately after. Aaah, stop rolling your eyes. As if you'd care if I transplanted a few moves from Oh..Podu! on to the latest offering from Panjabi MC!

Aaah, Oh.. Podu! Why don't we ever get to dance to the song? I don't know! The djs just don't play this song. Nor do they play Kasu Mele Kasu Vandhu, Manmadha Raasa, Aal Thotta Bhoopathi and Appadi Podu. These, for all you people who think Bhangra is the only kinda party music ever invented by people from the Indian subcontinent, are utterly dance-able Tamil tracks of recent years. And if you think that is all. Listen to Kodithe Kottali and Aatakavala, both Telugu tracks of equally recent vintage. These tracks literally beg me to get up and dance it's a darn new chance and if they don't do it to you, you either have two left feet (which is a shame) or are completely cluless as to what I am talking about (which is worser!).

CM ranted sometime ago (1) that some of her friends argued that that "ppl with class do not like this song" (2) and that "it is understandable that (CM) likes only dandanakka songs" since she comes from a smaller city (and not from a metro). Coming as I do from Chennai (like some of CM's friends), I think that her friends could not be any more wrong. I love such songs and while I am not averse to hitting the dance floors to the music of Panjabi MC or Daler Mehendi, I think that DJs both in India and here in the US have this aversion for Tamil and Telugu (not to mention the occasional Mallu) tracks more or less for a similar reason.

Yeah, it seems a malaise that is prevelant even in India. In fact, you would be surprised if I told you that DJs in Chennai and Bangalore are guilty in this regard too. Girish, one of The Suderman's readers, says that he is not a "Tamil patriot", but is definitely incensed at what his cousins experienced in a disco (which I shall not name here because it is all hear say) in Chennai. They apparently requested for a tamil song. Imagine their surprise and anger when they were snubbed and informed it was "against rules to play a Tamil song"! He emailed me to say that he was once in a, ahem.., club here in the US where Tamil songs were played on occasion.

Before all you guys who visit this blog from your homes and workplaces here in the US, head to the local "Gentlemen's Club" and request Naan Salt Cotaurs, Nee Saidapettai as background music for your whole-some entertainment, you should understand that I definitely can't vouch for the authencity of Girish's last line. In fact, I think he was joking it might just have been an isolated case. But don't you see his point?

[1] CM, I did go back and read your older posts, just as I told you I would !

[2] The song referred to, is Lajjavathiye (sung by Jassie Gift) whose Malayalam and Tamil versions hit the top of their respective charts early last year !

(To be concluded....)

Sunday, April 24, 2005

Iodex anyone?

Ooooh... Aaah... Ouch…. The Iodex mantra is the single line that has been coming out my mouth throughout the day, today. Before my mom starts worrying, I have to say that it has been a nice weekend so far, a nice mix of sobriety mixed with wild behavior. I should add that it was a clean weekend, lest she gets the mental picture of me cavorting around with, well never mind. It is better that she stays off that mental image. Let me keep the good boy image for some more time in my life. But then, who am I kidding?

Anyways, the highlight of the weekend was a charity dinner / DJ nite organized by the local Indo-American group here. I don’t know much about the dinner, but the music was foot-tapping, and tap we did for a couple of hours into the night. It was a night full of fun, solely because of a few friends who are as footloose as me. The songs were sort of fresh with the dj playing none of the usual suspects.

When I was in Ohio, any dance night organized by the local ISA (which was whenever we had a Indian festival in the calendar, like Holi and Diwali, not to mention Aug 15) featured some songs that have been around for almost 5 years or more now. Among there are/were Chaiyya Chaiyya, Koi Kahe (from DCH), some bhangra numbers (Gori Nalon etc.) and a couple of classic Amitabh numbers like Mere Angne mein.

Last night there were none of these numbers and it was like a breath of fresh air. The ten of us had the most fun, being probably the youngest set of dancers on the floor, if you discount the ankle biters that we had to step over carefully from time to time. The dj played some nice numbers from recent movies like Dhoom, some remixed Bhangra numbers that I haven’t heard at all and some other bhangra numbers that seemed vaguely familiar. During a break for all those people (read US and a few more) who had taken the floor without dinner, the dj decided to try some karaoke. He walked around singing and thrust the mic at anyone he deemed fit. He mistook me for my friend who had caught his attention earlier and thrust the mic at me during the final antra of Jadoo Teri Nazar and yours truly managed to impress one and all around him. Thank you very much!

Back on the dance floor after dinner, I was invited to try a minute or two of salsa, which I did, trying to match my partner’s foot steps. She sort of gave up on me within 30 seconds, but I think I’d have caught on soon enough. Then we had the whale of a time doing a mock qawwali for the pseudo Qawwali from Main Hoon Na - Tumse Milke Dil Ka Jo Haal. Now, that was a first, even for me. I felt every eye on the dance floor on us, what, with the ten of us on our knees, gyrating like we were high on something or the other.

Got out close to midnight and went over to a friends place. The whole group sat and settled down to watch a movie, halfway through which I started getting SOS signals from places in my body that I never knew the existence of. The movie ended close to 4, after which I came back home and hit the bed groaning like nobody’s business.

I managed to get up at 10 am, rather early considering my late departure to dream land. I hit the books for some time before embarking on a drive down I95 to a temple in Maryland. Two different temples in a single weekend (had made the short drive to the local temple here in Newark) would have been a first even if I was in India. But, isn’t it true that people mellow with age?

But the dance night certainly did add to my irritation that DJs at Indian events here in the USA don’t look southward (with respect to Indian geography) when it comes to playing songs for people to dance. More on that in the next post.

Wednesday, April 20, 2005

30 yard circle of life

Nants umlolongi bagithi umama [Here comes a coach, Mother]
Sithi uhm umlolongi [Oh yes, it's a coach]
Nants umlolongi bagithi baba
Sithi uhhmm umlolongi
Umlolongi
Siyo Nqoba [We're going to conquer]

From the day we arrive on the Team
And blinking, step into the spotlight
There's more to experience than can ever be experienced
More to achieve than can ever be achieved
There's far too much to take in face
More to face than can ever be faced
But the ball rolling along
Through the green grass
Keeps fit and tough on the endless round

It's the Circle of Cricket
And it moves us all
Through form and touch
Through thick and thin
Till we find our position
On the path unwinding
In the Circle
The Circle of Cricket


- Ripped off from The Circle of Life (The Lion King), with due apologies to Elton John (music), Tim Rice (Lyrics) and Carmen Twillie (the voice).

Team India has come a full circle - that's what I distinctly felt, when I saw this. I double checked to see if Wadekar's statement was circa 1999, but he has been interviewed just a couple of hours ago. So, even at the risk of sounding humorous, I have to ask where has Ajit Wadekar been in the last few years? Was he in a coma? Or was he "Taken"?

Regardless of the condition of Wadekar's mental stabilities, the comment looks stupid and Rediff certainly has done what it does best, raise up shit just for the heck of it. Wadekar's opinions on this issue are skewed. Sandeep Patil might be the right person, but the fact that Kenya made it to the semis in WC 2003 is not reason enough for me. Let us not forget that the security issues pertaining to Zimbabwe and Kenya, were also reasons for their semi final appearance. My take on this issue is, let the seniors in the team decide who they want with them. That's the way sports work these days, even team sports. Ultimately the players are the resources that the Board and ergo the country's hope thrives on and it definitely pays to keep them happy. So, Mr. Wadekar, if the players decide that Sandeep Patil is the right person, he will be chosen.

Anyways, Adios JW! In my book, you are the best there ever will be! Even considering that India is right now languishing at the same stage (as a team) that it was in when you took over, my opinion will not change. Team India's state today is a re-affirmation that life comes full circle once in a while. The positives from your tenure are not apparent in the results. Well, they actually are, but the positives are more glaring when the general state of the team, with respect to composition, fitness and the attitudes, is considered.

Thanks, John, for everything....

Monday, April 18, 2005

ChRRaNaM's Road Trip to Thalaivar-ville!

A week of feverish planning culminated in the incorporation of ChRRaNaM (Chapman Road Rajini Narpani Manram, named so by me), comprising of seven individuals (one of whom did not know neither a word of Thamizh nor the existence of the manram). This is an organization formed with the aim of making it to New Jersey on time to watch Chandramukhi. The aim was not too lofty, but I think you must read on to decide if we achieved our goal completely.

After much deliberation and a review of available finances, we decided that the original intention of driving to NJ early Saturday morning to watch the noon show at the Pathmark 13 Cinema at North Bergen was not viable due to the high insurance costs for the rental car. We decided to shoot for the 10:30 show on Friday, returning back to our base at Newark in the wee hours of Saturday. It was decided that I would drive us back to Newark, while S, being the more experienced driver would drive us down there. The tickets were booked and the car, an Altima, was commandeered from one of the local Enterprise offices.

Two hours before we were due to leave, I decided that this road trip would be incomplete without appropriate music blaring out from the car’s CD player. I had heard so much folklore about a memorable road trip made by other Thalai fans between St. Louis and Chicago (a 4 hour drive each way) for the first show of Baba a couple of years ago, that we, at ChRRaNam had to simply do something equally huge. Again, whether we did or not, seems irrelevant now, but I like to think we tried. So, I hustled up Thalai’s intro songs from previous movies and compiled a CD with classics like “Oruvan Oruvan”, “Podhuvaga En Manasu” right up to “Devuda”. Of course, there were one or two exceptions (i.e. non intro songs), but memorable thalaivar songs nevertheless.

Five or six miles into our drive, we ran into our first snag that brought forth continuous ribbing from the others directed towards the self proclaimed “World’s Best Navigator”, i.e. me. We, rather I, missed a sign board and we found ourselves on I-295 rather than I-95. A good hour before the show, we found ourselves approaching exit 18W (NJ 3 toward Secaucus/Rutherford). That’s was due to the lack of vital info in our map, a redundant detail usually, but made very relevant by the fact that all of us were new to New Jersey. A close shave followed with a huge trailer bearing past us on the left fork with its horn blaring. Another close shave followed, this time a car braking hard to avoid us on the right. I think the driver realized our predicament and merely reversed a few yards to avoid us and continued on his way on 3 East. We however decided to go on 3 West and ended up in the parking lot of a stadium complex (seemed to be the Continental Arena, the home of the New Jersey Nets). We took a 15 minute drive back in the opposite direction, took a U turn and proceeded on 3 East. Another wrong turn later (with half hour remaining now), we pulled into a gas station on NJ 1/9 South and were told to “take a U turn at the second light and drive in the opposite direction to go to the theatre”. What followed was a nightmare, with around 2 miles of traffic proceeding at about a meter at a time, due to road work!

By this time, the guys in the other car, who had been a mile or so behind us when we were on I 95 had already reached the venue and started directing us to the Plaza 12 theatre over the phone. We gave up after a 15 minute drive in the general vicinity and went into a gas station. By this time, we realized that the guys in the other car “could be at the wrong theatre” since the ad that I had printed out, was for “Pathmark 13 Cinemas”. The gas station attendant directed us to the cinema, which he said was just a 5 minute drive. We landed finally at Pathmark, a good 35 minutes after the movie started, with the other guys already inside (they were in there, but had been confusing Plaza 12 with Pathmark 13, while directing us!). We staggered into the empty foyer and were directed towards Hall 1. By this time, I was thoroughly pissed after my navigating gaffes and the subsequent ribbing (which I realize now, on hindsight was totally good natured) and decided that another couple of minutes would not matter and made my way to the loo. Ya, that’s right, I chose the loo over a Thalaivar movie. Sacrilege, I know, but that was how "pissed" I was.

I walked into Hall 1, a few minutes later and found the whole hall reverberating with “Repeatu”. The other ChRRaNaM members were still waiting to see where we could sit and I pulled them towards the second row, which seemed to be the only place where there was a group of seats available. We sat down and I leaned over to the guy in the next seat (was sitting at the end of the group) and asked him how much I had missed. My grin matched Thalai’s on the screen as I heard the words “Maximum 10 minutes, Sir”. And that was when I realized that all was not wrong and the movie had been delayed by half hour! I then had the whale of a time whistling in response to Thalai!

I walked out during the interval and then got the first taste of the pleasant bizarre experience that has since made me term it as “a bizarro Thiruvizha”. I was accosted by two different people who converged on me at the same time with the words – “Dei, nee enna da inga panra” (What are you doing here?). One was a friend’s brother and the other, an acquaintance that I had made during our IMS CAT coaching classes at Stella Maris. And looking around, I could recognize at least two other people who I knew from Chennai, but who probably did not recognize me. I also saw a girl from my days in Thanjavur, but being a “Mechu P**** Mavan” (as Badri calls me, referring to my degree in Mechanical Engineering with the word “Mechu”), I could not obviously approach this gal without getting raised eyebrows from her (if she still remembered me). He he… I then found a friend from school, sitting three rows behind us, who grinned at me as soon as I noticed him. Another 5 minute catching up followed before the movie resumed again. But that was not all, driving back to Newark, I met a junior from Shanmugha who had been at the same movie and was driving back to Philly. We met at a rest area where we stopped to catch some dinner to fill our growling stomachs. Whewwwwwwww….

As for ChRRaNaM, I think we will disband it as soon as we settle the financial issues arising out of this trip. So, do you think ChRRaNaM served its purpose?

Sunday, April 17, 2005

Chandramukhi - The review



Thalaivaaaaaaaaa... Kalakitta!!!!!

Chandramukhi is definitely a Rajini movie. And as a Rajini fan, I was not disappointed. The characterization is treated differently, but it is nevertheless a movie with the Thalaivar trademark at a lot of places. On the whole, I was impressed with the packaging of the movie, with not too many compromises made either to the original screen play. The fact that the story was (unusually) ready-made with limited scope to project Rajini as a superman (in fact, Mohanlal’s portrayal as Dr. Sunny Joseph in the original Manichitrathazhu was restrained) works positively in this direction. But for all of you, who are ambivalent towards Rajini, the gravest injustice you could do to Chandramukhi would be to go to watch it with visions of Padaiyappa in your mind.

Chandramukhi is fun, with Thalai’s comic sense in full flow. The Thalai-Vadivelu combo certainly matches with his combos with Senthil and Goundamani in other movies. But that’s were any comparisons should end. This is not your typical Rajini padam. That is good, mostly. To be very frank, I think I would have squirmed in my seat at the few instances of double entendre if I had been watching with a "knowledgeable" person of the opposite sex.

I would also have appreciated the movie better if there were not so many close ups used. Like LG indicated in his Mumbai Express review, close ups don’t gel in a comedy track and contributes negatively to the Rajini – Vadivel (and to a disappointingly lesser extent, Nasser) comedy track which is one of the strong points in this movie. Another point that I would need to make here is the fact that some of the scenes seem incomplete and without explanation. As someone who saw Manichitrathazhu a couple of years ago, I will say that this movie mostly stays true to the original. So the incompleteness seems to be more due to our inability to fathom a lot of issues in the movie in the face of the Rajini aura which is what lot of people expect to see and keep searching for, with some success. Any more effort to explain the technicalities of the mental issues relevant to the movie, would probably make the movie bulkier.

I am unable to decide whether Jyothika's performance needs to be appreciated. But that might be just because, Shobana, being the trained classical dancer that she is, won the National award for her performance. I feel that Jyothika did her usual “raised eyebrows, I am pissed off” routine, albeit with a devilishly made up face complete with botched kohl around the eyes and jasmine strands falling apart in her hair. Prabhu does not have too much of a role, but again this is true to the original. Actually it has to be appreciated that the producers did not view this as a pad to re-launch Prabhu’s non-existent career. Nayantra and Malavika add to the beauty quotient, while Vijaykumar appears in an almost invisible role. And just when I was thinking whatever happened to the 'Punnagai Arasi' K.R.Vijaya, she makes a late appearance here as Prabhu's mom. And I’d have been happier if Thilakan had been roped in to reprise his original role as the tantrik with a healthy attitude to the science of psychology. The jibes and the unspoken words between Thilakan and Mohanlal in the original were amusing, but here, Rajini’s interaction with the tantrik does not raise above the normal. For all you trivia mongers out there, Vineeth is Shobana’s real life cousin. He seems to be only actor currently in the business who can handle a classical dance sequence with ease. And that is a valid enough reason for his presence, though he looks kind of jaded in the flashback-esque scenes, as does Thalaivar in the same scenes which is one of my few grouses with the movie.

But I think I am still stuck on the original to do enough justice to this movie. Also I think I spent too much time whistling than listening to the lines. So, a second watch definitely beckons. In fact, multiple watches! As for comparisons between CM and Mumbai Express, you should watch Mumbai Express before deciding whether u liked either or both or neither of the movies. Don't rely on reviews to decide whether a movie is good or bad or plain ugly. Reviews are PERSONAL OPINIONS, not gospel! I, for one am certainly going to watch Mumbai Express, as soon as I get the chance.

Saturday, April 09, 2005

Reel Time vs Real Time

Though some people might laugh at this post of mine, I think I do need to make one. One reason is that I think, perhaps the first time, this blog might be out on the open with respect to my extended family. Hey, it’s not always that you get to see someone known personally on your city's main newspaper, albeit in a convoluted way. This post is mainly for their benefit and for all those who might land up here looking for stuff that might not be in here in the form that they seek.

Were you, by chance, were pointed to this blog by The Hindu's article titled Reel-Time blogs? If your answer is yes, thanks for visiting. But I think you might be slightly disappointed (or relieved, if you are my mom!).

Contrary to what the url for this blog might indicate, this blog is not all about movies. Well, I am a die -hard Thalaivar fan, but movies just form an, on again, off again part of my life. Speaking of life, I spent four years in the hostel during my undergrad years and after spending one year back at home, I have spent the last four years out again. And I have picked up quite a large circle of friends and as it happens, a wider circle of interests as well. At college, I started watching movies with much more frequency than I used to in school. Staying in the hostel does give you some "bad" habits (to perhaps quote my mom), but this is the only one I picked up. I think I picked this one up from my father, who is reputed to have been a part of several night-show escapades from his hostel in Palakkad. But movies jostle for space in my life (by this my free time) with books, music, cricket, other sports and lately this blog. I write when I have time to think of things other than the pressing thing(s) that I have been facing over the last couple of years.

Hey, I am digressing. So, if you came here to see what you could find about movies on this blog, I don't think you will find much. I have done some movies reviews on and off, ranging from Michael Madana Kamarajan, Kaakkha Kaakkha and the latest being Raam. I have done some music reviews (Kadhal Konden, Chandramukhi etc.), but those would definitely reflect what I am, a musical novice who can perhaps hold a tune, but can't figure out how one tune differs from the other. I just talk of how things affect me and not how they are. Believe me, there is a difference between these things.

Btw, Teakada was misspelled on the article, at least in the online version. Also I think I should certainly point out some other people who never cease to amaze me with their astute view points. I am not mentioning anyone who has already been mentioned in the article, but these people would have been better choices to make that list any day over me.
  1. Anand - I am letting him stay anonymous at the moment, but you might just find out you know him from somewhere. His posts might slight look academic in nature, but thats to be expected from a student of film making.
  2. George Thomas - a hardcore RDB fan from Pune who mostly talks about Hindi movies, and their music. He sometimes talks of really obscure movies, which he watches solely for time pass. I can't imagine sitting through a B-Grade Mithun Chakraborty movie, but he seems to do that for fun. God save him...
  3. Samanth - a freelance journo who reviews movies for fun and for money and also discusses movies with his friend Baradwaj Rangan on Reel Two
  4. Sudish Kamath - another journo, who is currently into a special celluloid experience. He might have just made me a star if I had been in Chennai, not that we even talked about it. But I am just not there in the geographical vicinity, which makes all talk of me starring in a Tamil movie as much irrelevant as a protest against sand quarrying in the Saharan wasteland.
  5. Bharath - An acquaintance who is as opinionated as me and whose interests in movies cannot be measured by the number of posts on movies on his blog. He gets on here because I hope to see him do more posts on his movie watching experiences.
But I do have to say one thing. Don't treat these people as sources of information on movies. Their blogs are not like your average Cinesouth.com (I should do a post specifically on Cinesouth in the future). Well, you could, sometimes. But mostly, it’s their opinions. Lazy Geek (one of the bloggers interviewed for the article) once posted something that boomeranged into at least a hundred comments from readers, a number of email exchanges, for and against posts from other bloggers, all arguing who was the better director, Mani Ratnam or Bala. Recently another post on Kamalhassan boomeranged into a discussion on what could be termed plagiarism. What do we get from all this? Nothing directly, but who knows about tomorrow? You could just be in a job interview where you might be asked about plagiarism and you might just be able to use this info. That's what all this is. There is no point in what I talk about here on this blog, not at this very moment. But we bloggers would like to think that we would make a difference in society with our viewpoints. Idealistic it might be, but this is one ideal case scenario that has prospects.

Good morning, and in case I don't see ya, good afternoon, good evening, and good night! - Truman Burbank (Truman Show, 1998, starring Jim Carey)

Friday, April 08, 2005

Book Meme a.k.a Pass on the hard pillow subsitute

Dhammo posted this meme last week on his blog and I think he must be miffed that I haven't continued the meme, inspite of asking him if I should. Well, a combination of certain factors caused this delay. But as Thalaivar says, If I am late, I usually do the latest. Oh, well, I guess I am not creative (unlike this lady who has proposed a new term, foxymoron) enough, especially if I have to translate and paraphrase at the same time. But at the advice of the above mentioned lady, I am not giving up.

Ok, without further ado, here goes.

1. You’re stuck inside Fahrenheit 451! which book do you want to be?
- Animal Farm by George Orwell. I haven't read any other book that captured the essence of life in Communist Russia as much as this one did. And did it cleverly too. On first look, it seemed to be a children's novel full of talking animals, but it soon turned dark and cynical.

2. Have you ever had a crush on a fictional character?
- Oh yeah. Nandini (Aishwarya Rai) from Hum Dil Chuke Sanam. Kathleen "Shop girl" Kelly (Meg Ryan) from You've Got Mail. Fran Kubelik (Shirley Temple) from The Apartment, the list goes on and on. Currently though, it's Donna Moss (Janel Moloney) from the West Wing. So, I guess that I do share Dhammo's fascination with the performing arts.

3. The last book you bought is:
- Angels and Demons, by Dan Brown. Served me well during last Thanksgiving's flight to Tampa.

4. The last book you read:
- The Goal by Eliyahu Goldratt

5. What are you currently reading?
- Life of Pi, by Yann Martel

6. Five books you would take to a deserted island:
- The Lord of the Rings Trilogy by JRR Tolkien, The Hitchhiker’s guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams, The Picador Book of Cricket by Ramachandra Guha (an anthology), Swami and Friends by R.K.Narayan, Animal Farm by George Orwell

7. Who are you going to pass this stick to and why?
+ Ramanand, since seriously one can't win Mastermind without doing some reading.
+ Vindy, cos he currently has 5 books on his "I'm Reading...." list and can be counted on to provide us with a few laughs along the way.
+ IshwarOne, since his use of terms such as Karmic Tithes, indicates his suitability.
+ Jay, cos he was my source for a number of books that I have read, including my first Rushdie.
+ Meghana, the femme fatale who probably does more trips to the public library in Newark than anybody else. I think this might be a good way to give her a chance to keep her place on my blogroll after my spring cleaning. (*snicker snicker)

I do have some more on my list. But they have told me at various points in time that they would not wanna be caught dead browsing through this blog. But I know they are around, since I know how funny and intellectual I am. Seriously...