Thursday, November 23, 2006

Rounding Up The Usual Suspects

I was late on posting my review of Casino Royale. There was so much to say about the Bond movie and my experiences as a Bond fan while growing up, but I just lost the enthusiasm to go ahead with that after reading a few other blog posts on the same. Clearly, being first to market has its advantage. Nonetheless, here are some things that come to my mind right now which I haven't read about recently in other blogs, so here goes:

1. Dhoom again?
I saw the D2 movie first day first show today (ya, baby - Thursday 3 pm show). I actually thought it was decent. Hrithik stole the thunder, and made Abhishek look inept in the looks, dance and fights department. The women in the movie were a study in contrast too, with Aishwarya 'like' (you'll get this joke when you see the move) getting to the nerves. At least, Bipasha mainly concentrated on looking good, and did well at that. The story had not much to offer and one could see traces of Ocean's twelve and Bourne identity. The music was a step down from the original Dhoom. I actually thought that the background music too could have been used better. The action was neat in parts, and Hrithik's get ups were pretty cool. Aah, and one more point: the last bastion of Indian conversatism in movies fell. Aishwarya kissed!! After going on in interviews and articles about how Indians don't kiss and she won't kiss, she went ahead anyway (for those willing to debate, the kiss in kyon ho gaya na was a camera trick). Is this the setup for the Hollywood career? In any case, she couldn't pull off all the skimpy clothes in her quota. Desi clothes for her please.

2. Guru no more?
Dil Se was the seminal work of Rehman. I didn't think highly of the music of Roja (again, debaters welcome) and the music of Bombay was also not the making of Rehman (kuchi kuchi rakkama brought it down). Dil Se was pathbreaking, in the sounds and the compositions and the moods. And a big big factor were the lyrics, by Gulzar. After Saathiya being another fine hit, I was waiting to see how they'd team up here. Results are mixed and I am suffering for my own high expectations. The one song that stays in the head though is Ai Hairat-e-aashiqui. The album, as one reviewer mentioned, is typical Rehman. Jaage Hain reminds me of the same music arrangement as So gaye hain from Zubeida. There are numerous such similarities that can be pointed out. Yet, good music overall. Just not what I was looking for. On a side note, what is Gulzar upto? I still can't get over his trite lyrics: "mom maani nahin, dad naraaz tha" from Jaan-e-man. I was dying to get hold of the new Jaggu-Gulzar album online and when I did, I really wasn't impacted as much. Is it just too much to ask for repeat successes?

3. Prote-ass?
We got a drubbing in the first ODI. All out for 91. It really shouldn't have come as a surprise. The problem isn't that we are a good team. I think we are off on our selection lately. It happened in champions trophy and it has happened again. No surprise that barring Tendulkar and to an extent Dravid, no one really settled in. Tendulkar has now been warned. At the fag end of their careers, the Lara vs. Tendulkar battle is in full flow. Lara has thrown the gauntlet, and Tendulkar has to respond. Ponting will in due time overtake them both. It does look very possible the way he is batting right now. But Ponting is just a great batsman, not a genius. Plus, he doesn't have to face the Australian attack :-) I am looking forward to some significant contributions from Tendulkar for the rest of this trip, and of course the world cup.

4. No inheritance lost?
I got a chance to read the Inheritance of Loss by Kiran Desai. I booked it in the library the day the news of her Booker victory came out, and so didn't have to wait too long to get it. I liked the book. At least more than I did reading Arundhati Roy's work. I like her sense of prose, and the insights that pop out of her writing on an average once every chapter. On the flipside, can't Indian authors provide anything other than immigrant stories? How about a story set in Texas with cowboys and no trace of Asians?

5. Maha-thorn?
Some of you may have read a blog post long ago about running a 5 mile race. I had hinted at the possibility of madness taking over and considering running a half-marathon. 13.1 miles of it. Well, I am happy to tell you that I have gone insane, at least in that matter. I am gunning for this run this weekend. Been training for it for a month or more, and while not complete in my preparations, am willing to bet limb and well, more limbs for it. Look at the bright side. They give you a medal for just finishing the race :-) Look at the flip side. That's the distance from Andheri to Churchgate if I were to run on the railway tracks. Wish me luck.


RTD2 said...

Here's an idea...Run as if you were running on the railway tracks from Andheri to Churchgate, with Abhishek in the train behind you, and Aishwarya waiting at Churchgate in sari and Tendulkar waiting in an Aston Martin to whisk you away home :)
Good luck!

Niranjan said...

At rush hour, I might fancy doing the Andheri to Churchgate run.

With a race long as that, you'd easily burn a day's worth of calories. Try to keep your eyes off the ice-cream slurping/burger-chomping pedestrians, and you'd be fine ;-). Of course, we'll be rooting for you...

Parth said...

Thanks guys for the wishes. Niranjan, I am certainly going to avoid thinking of food during the run. Don't want to veer off the road at the sight of a fast food joint while in the race :-)

sd said...

Best of luck on the marathon.

I am watching the series - and not feeling very well right now:) From now on I watch this series only for the aesthetic pleasure of watching Sachin and Rahul bat. Also I am consciously avoiding cricinfo - over-analysis of these failures bleeds my heart!

30in2005 said...

All the best for the run Parth! Talk about fitness levels....

I am all for Indian authors writing about the immigrant experience and many of them have done a fine fine job of it. On the other hand plots that have nothing Indian in them (eg. Texas and cowboys) just don't get the same treatment and depth as one would hope for and then all you are left with is a sorry sorry read. The exception to this rule for me has been Vikram Seth.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, perhaps its too much to ask for; repeat success... even from Gulzar. And Ae Hairate-e-Ashiqui stayed with me too...

And oh yeah, Hrithik totally overshadows everyone else... Abhishek almost looked sloppy beside him, and this is an Abhishek fan speaking! :P