my 1000th Indian film: Inaam Dus Hazaar

How to mark the momentous occasion of the 1000th entry in my Indian cinema-watching career? A colleague suggested I watch something with "thousand" in the title. Googling yielded 2001: Do Hazaar Ek , a Raj Sippy film about a serial killer;  Hazaar Chaurasi Ki Ma , a National Film Award-winning piece by Govind Nihalani about Naxalite struggles; and Inaam Dus Hazaar , a remake of North by Northwest . No contest: always choose the project in which Sanjay Dutt plays a Cary Grant role. Even at only 5 minutes in, I knew I had made the right decision. What followed is not only a solid adaptation of the Hitchcock classic but also a masala entertainer that checks many of the boxes in the foormula we know and love. How many boxes, you ask? Read on! I'll check off everything this film does that is a trait that these films have taught me to expect. [Spoilers if you haven't seen North by Northwest . Also, I'm going to use the actor names for most of the characters in thi


Thank you to Asim and Amrita for having me on the always excellent Khandaan Podcast to talk about Zero, the trailers of Manikarnika  (this could be historical wackadoodle fun but probably won't be?) and The Legend of Maula Jatt  (it's hard to think of an actor less evocative of Sultan Rahi than Fawad Khan?), and our year-end choices. The episode is up now! We discuss Zero in depth, but if you want my quick take: days after seeing it, I still don't know what to make of it. I honestly don't think it's disastrous or without merit, but I don't get it, either. I'm not confident I can even guess what the makers are trying to do: show that physically atypical people and alcoholics can be just as awful as anyone else? As Amrita says on the podcast, Zero takes big swings, but it misses. On paper, this is a 1970s everything-but-the-kitchen-sink masala plot—space! baby! chimp! movie star! a bunch more movie stars! almost wedding! another almost wedding! narr