Showing posts from July, 2006

I just know that when I get home, everyone will jokingly ask if I met any movie stars...

...and then I can, with great delight, reply "Why yes, indeed I did!" Yesterday afternoon at the Oberoi Grand Hotel in Kolkata, I met a movie star. Let me just say two things before I tell the story. 1) With the possible exception of my FPMBF, I don't have any desire to actually interact with any Bollywood stars (or any kind of celebrity, for that matter). What on earth would I say to them? 2) Other than former Canadian prime minister Pierre Trudeau, I have never had to answer that question, becuase I've never had any conversations with anyone who counts as a celebrity. Until yesterday. We're sitting in the Oberoi lobby, waiting to go to the train station for our overnight trip to Varanasi, when Rajan comes up to me and says "See that woman over there? She's ______. She's been in several fimls. And that man with her is ______, a director." I'm not putting in ______ to be secretive; I didn't recognize either name, so they went in one ea

filmi bits and bobs

Finally did some serious movie shopping today, accompanied by Rajan, who maybe just went with me to make sure I could cross the street safely, I'm not sure. There is a very crowded, very crammed movie and music store just down from the hotel. Once again, I was the only woman in the place - where are all the women in Kolkata, I wonder? Anyway. Their selection of DVDs was okay, although not great - much better was the range of VCDs but I've heard mixed reports on how those tend to work on US players so I have only bought a few. So today I got things I know will work, namely remix CDs, for as great as the remix section, I've heard my favorites...well, let's just say "quite a few times by this point," and it's time to branch out. And I did find two DVDs that were necessary: Muqaddar Ka Sikanddar , of which I saw a bit on tv the other day and had identified for me by Obi Wan, and a collection called Everybody on the Dance Floor , which clearly has to


Drat. I had this long post written about going to see Krrish then some weird stuff happened on this computer. I am at shall we describe it...jerryrigged? "cyber cafe" (no cafe by the way) which Debbie and I reached via a ladder. Like a bunk bed. Oooh it's like camp! Anyway this keyboard is weird and lots of the keys don't work including the commma. Anyhoo. 11 people in my group came with me to see Krrish. It was great fun. I can't say I thought it was a really great movie or anything but we all enjoyed ourselves (except one who left at intermission) and Hrihik was very popular among my female colleagues. We all followed the plot decently enough perhaps helped by my en route narration of the basics of Koi Mil Gaya. Which by the way sounds a lot stupider when you try to explain it to people who don't watch Bollywood. "There's this guy and he's a space not an astronomer...and he has this machine...then he dies...but his son...

pack your bags

Rajan and I have just dreamt up the best idea, and now that we have it figured out, I can't believe it took us this long to do so. We are going to have a Bollywood-themed tour of India. Lots of time in Mumbai, of course, with visits to Filmi City and various sites, but then some travel to various locations of famous scenes from film history. He said he'd need 15 people - who's coming? I'm completely serious. We could do this. He has so much of movie knowledge and is fluent in Hindi and is in the travel industry, and I! Yeah, that's what we'll call it. Anyway, how cool is that? We're talking about 2008, so there's time to get your passports in order. Seriously, how fantastic! Tonight I see Krrish with 11 other people from my group. I'm going to have to devote some brain power this afternoon to how to summarize the relevant bits of KMG for them. On the other hand, maybe that would just confuse them.

I'm not really sure teaching someone the electric slide is a fair exchange for bhangra lessons....

I wish I could have written about this right away, so I could have captured every nuance, but there just wasn't time. So, go over to Beth Goes to India and read about my first filmi dancing experience! It was incredibly fun. Read about Rajan (aforementioned tour guide who took us to Fanaa ) (aka "the legend," thanks to a cheeky t-shirt he wears on which there is an arrow pointing up that says "the man" and an arrow pointing down that says "the legend"), who indulges me in conversations about movies and seems to get a big kick out of an audience (albeit an audience of only one or two) who appreciates his mad dancing skillz. He is also up for an outing to Krrish , for which there is a growing groundswell of support, now that everyone has seen the hoardings. In other news: one of my colleagues has fallen for SRK, and I have a growing collection of pictures of movie stars in ads on billboards and signs. Isn't India great? And yes, Rajan enjoyed lear

filmi first: Fanaa

This is going to be a completely inelegant post, not at all worth its subject matter, but I couldn't sleep last night, so please forgive me. Last night I went to a theater in Delhi and saw Fanaa . I wish I had liked the movie more, but I am very happy to say that the experience of watching it was fantastic. The very best part was seeing Aamir and Kajol dance around the sites of Delhi, some of which we had just seen two days prior, including a tree at Qtub Minar, helpfully pointed out by one of the cool ladies who works for Fulbright India, who is also a movie junkie. She told me "They did a song at that tree! Get a picture!" Clearly she understands me. Update to post (July 4, 2007 - the anniversary of my first movie in India): here's the tree. (Okay, back to the rest of the post as originally written.) We have a very funny tour guide on our trip - really he is more of a shepherd, making sure we get from place to place and answering our stupefying range of idiotic