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Showing posts from April, 2008

compare/contrast: Akshaye Khanna and John Cusack

My superwow friend Celi brought up this comparison today. (And just so you know whose brain you're dealing with, Celi is also the co-founder of the [Somewhat Un]official Shashi Kapoor Fan Club on Facebook. Yeah!) Here are the smilarities I've come up with so far: both have close family members also prominent in the film industry (sister Joan; father Vinod)both tend to avoid media fracas and keep their private lives relatively privateboth have acting skills far beyond the general quality of many of the productions they're in (America's Sweethearts, Serendipity; Shaadi Se Pehle, Aap Ki Khatir)both have delivered very strong performances as iconic longing boyfriends (Say Anything; Dil Chahta Hai)both have played artists in love with much older women (Bullets over Broadway; Dil Chahta Hai)...um...both have starred in movies featuring road trips (The Sure Thing; Dil Chahta Hai).If it weren't for DCH I'm not sure if I could have done much with this idea, and now that…

Deewaar

First of all, a big thank you to reader Tulsi, who sent me my very own copy of Deewaar! Thanks, Tulsi! You made my day.

[If you call a one-sentence description of how the movie doesn't end a spoiler, then beware of spoilers.]

Deewaar won't get out of my head. I'm not sure what I make of it, and I'm not sure what the filmmakers wanted me to take away from it. It's sad. It's bleak. No bad deed is unpunished but no good deed is simple. The walls of Deewaar divide, not protect. The structures the characters inhabit are significant - the smuggler's dirty-money posh bungalow, the policeman's honest but modest rooms, the temple, the locked door of the warehouse where Vijay rains down justice on the extortionists - and it is meaningful when someone crosses from one into another. Even the construction of a wall injures our beloved Maa and leaves her vulnerable to demeaning, heartless creeps.

And what about that famous line, "Mere paas Maa hai": triumph or…

the life of my favorite Shakespeare-wallah: Felicity Kendal's autobiography, White Cargo

Felicity Kendal, the star of the wallop-packing Shakespeare-Wallah, is known only to me through that wonderful film and the dreadful 2000s British detective series Rosemary & Thyme, in which she plays a botanist who teams up with a former police officer and solves plant- or garden-related crimes.* When Memsaab Story recommended her autobiography to me, I thought carefully and decided that a childhood spent traipsing around India doing Shakespeare and my curiosity about how she could have made such an amazing film at such a young age outweighed any reservations I may have had stemming from my general shudder associated with the tv show. (Plus the book came out a few years before the show started, so I could rest assured I'd not have to learn anything further about it.)

It is a great read. Her childhood in and around India, traveling with her family's theater troupe (their story is the basis for much of Shakespeare-Wallah), is absolutely fascinating. Kendal balances the story…

Siddharth triple-threat: Aata, Bommarillu, and Chukkallo Chandrudu

First thing's first: Siddharth is absolutely adorable, and he really works his physical attributes to their maximum effects - beautiful eyes, big smile, dorky but endearing gestures, in-character and committed dancing.* I even liked his singing in Chukkallo Chandrudu. These all add up to a veeery pleasant and sometimes squeeee-filled movie-watching experience.

[Pause to reflect on the ├╝ber-schnuffel that is Siddharth.]

But during Aata and Bommarillu, my brain kept going "Hey, what about me?" I found both of these movies to be pretty dumb (or "pretty but dumb," take your pick).** The former has characters so broad you're not sure how even one of them fit on a movie screen; both have plots driven by very filmi, Really Stupid Ideas that severely challenged my ability to suspend disbelief; and the latter doesn't work if you can't support the love of Siddharth's pampered idiot and Genelia D'Souza's squeaking, cartoon-eyed, hot mess of annoyanc…

LOLyrf

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OMG I totully get that Tashan is gonna b hip n hott n awsumz but y wont u spll properli?

It makz u look dumz.