Friday, December 26, 2008

Arrogance

After going movie-less for a whole month, it was manna to be able to take in 2 movies in 2 days.

Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi was an interesting movie to look forward to since Aditya Chopra was returning to direction after so many years. DDLJ is a movie I really adored and I still pause whenever I come across it on TV while Mohabbatein was an awful awful movie. The biggest plus for RNBDJ is that it is closer to DDLJ than to Mohabbatein. And of course it has SRK who finally seems to be flexing his acting muscles. From the giggly Baazigar, SRK has essayed more intriguing roles with films like Swades, Chak De (while sticking to commercial Rahul / Raj mold in OSO, KANK) but here he seems to be combining the two. As shy Surinder wooing his broken-hearted wife, he paints a fascinating picture of the common man to rival R.K. Laxman. Unfortunately, he is the only saving grace of the movie with his insipid wife and irritating alter-ego making one want to scream with annoyance. And perhaps what is most displeasing is the sheer male arrogance where a woman’s gratitude magically becomes love and overcomes poor styling for a virtuous happy ending. Not to mention, the over-reliance on Rab for everything under the sun got my goat. I fear Aditya Chopra lives in DDLJ-land and is completely out of sync with today’s love stories. Or maybe he’s a marketing genius for making all of us long to live in his picture-perfect small town.

Dostana was seen almost a month after its initial release and with friends having diametrically opposite opinions on it, it was a must-see. An excellent script and fabulous comic delivery from Abhishek means this movie is a hit for me. John Abraham’s body should have had a paean dedicated to it (and not half a song – he put Shilpa Shetty’s body to shame!) and he did a creditable job. Priyanka was a waste and it’s sad that one of her hits this year isn’t something she should put on her resume. Abhishek Bachchan is a delight (despite his tie-n-dye clothes) and his fake love story enactment with John in Venice is one of the most memorable scenes from the movie. Dostana is also the height of female arrogance where the lissome babe is totally unaware of her effect on her ‘best’ friends and would any girl really choose pathetic Bobby Deol over John and Abhishek? Come on!

For anyone who like his/her comedy dark and smarter than Adam Sandler, I heartily recommend Burn After Reading. George Clooney looks better and better and Brad Pitt cruises through his role. Favourite scene:when Pitt ‘blackmails’ Malkovich on the phone.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

:)

It might be cliched, it might be silly.. but I just can't seem to stop smiling for now..

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Ball and Chain

It is a common sight at airports everywhere but I have been forcefully reminded every weekend. Nearly every single passenger (including me) was carrying a laptop. I conjectured that the lovey dovey couple were newly weds making a quick trip home, the stern distinguished man was racing home after a business meeting, the tired looking parents with an energetic kid were visiting the in-laws and so on. But all of them had the ubiquitous black bag/briefcase bulging with a laptop. Sad isn't it that even on a weekend away, carrying the office laptop is mandatory - just in case. This weekend, on my way to to Shillong, I carefully put my laptop in the office cabinet and my personal Vaio in my wardrobe at home. My little bid for freedom

Thursday, October 30, 2008

OD

Goregaon East went hep with the opening of the Oberoi Mall and we spend our weekend there as well. Movie @ PVR, lunch /dinner @ KFC and browsing through Lifestyle, Debenhams, Mumbai Central, all the shops.. Sounds good - yes, well, we did it for 3 straight days! And after watching Body of Lies, Karzz and Roadside Romeo, we retired hurt..
Hoping for better with the release of Fashion and Golmaal Returns

Friday, October 24, 2008

Love is...

I remember my parents having this absolutely adorable plaque-type thing with the 'Love is..' cartoon on it. I dug around a little (God bless Google) and found the info needed on Wikipedia (God bless Wiki as well). Turns out the comic strip was created by a NZ babe called Kim Grove who got the idea from making love notes for her husband. After her death, her son Stefano Casali continued the strip.
I think the most appealing part of the strip is the simplicity of the message and the fact that it makes one smile regardless of age or gender. I also love that the 2 main protagonists are adorably naked but obviously adult :)

For those who liked it, the official website is http://www.gocomics.com/loveis/

Monday, September 01, 2008

Back to the Theatre


After a long hiatus, I watched two back-to-back movies and thoroughly enjoyed the experience. Of course, the best part was the caramel popcorn and the free lipstick and nail polish Amway was giving away as part of some promotional offer but the movies were decent too.
Bachna Ae Haseeno disappointed, especially since every single (female) friend had told me how good it was. I didn’t like Ranbir one bit and was continuously cheering every time someone took the mickey out of him. Minissha was extremely irritating and I really don’t think she deserved Kunal Kapoor! Deepika was a notch above; but her perfectly groomed exterior seemed a bit odd for a business school student with 2 part time jobs. The real scene stealer, according to me, was Bipasha. As the lean mean model, she was simply scorching and she got the best dialogues from the soggy second half – she got Ranbir removing nail polish from her feet!I am sure every girl was silently cheering her on. Another grouse was the movie wrapped up a little too fast so though that was good for running for my next show, I felt a bit cheated. Where was the angst, the agony, the tear-jerk ending?

Rock On was a little more paisa-vasool. The music was simply amazing and merged perfectly with the narrative; the way it never did while listening to it in the car. Farhan was a pleasant surprise while Arjun’s mostly silent performance was very intense. Purab as the fun-loving K.D. was adorable and ‘Debbie’ was very very good.. Prachi disappointed though she made an excellent clothes-horse and Luke Kenny seemed to sleepwalk through the movie. The movie was a good watch overall and I would recommend it despite the lazy editing. In fact, it was refreshing to see a good movie about a rock band without the usual drugs and loose women plotlines. A little too Bollywood perhaps but heck, who’s complaining.

Friday, August 29, 2008

For V and S

We’re going to miss you…
..and the office will be strangely quiet.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Crazy Frog

Just a 5 second snippet played in office triggered off memories of this insanely catchy tune and video which was a rage 2 years back. Surprisingly, I never liked any of the other videos or tunes of Crazy Frog. I remember showing this video to my mum and she liked it as well. The storyline for the video is that this big bad thing wants to get rid of the annoying frog and will do anything to achieve his evil end. Crazy Frog is one ugly piece of carbon but you find yourself rooting for him to escape even as he 'ding dings' with his toothy grin.
So sit back and watch The Most Annoying Thing in the world (No, not me!)

Friday, August 01, 2008

I love Istanbul!


Another of the reasons I just love my company. After Malaysia and Thailand, our 'conference' this year was in Turkey! Despite the gruelling journey and a packed schedule, we managed to explore quite a bit of Istanbul.. I especially loved the whirling dervishes.. The guys, of course, were floored by the belly dancers and I couldn't get a decent snap because of the crowd next to the dance floor ;)
The cruise down the Bosphorus was incredibly appealing especially since it came after a rainy morning.. The two different sides to Istanbul (Asia on one side and Europe on the other) also made for a lovely contrasting effect. This picture, while of a modern day ship, got everyone talking about Pirates of the Carribean!







We got to see Aya Sofia square but could only explore Hagia Sophia in detail (complete with proper guide!). For the Blue Mosque, we snuck off from the main group to take some pictures and had to be content with viewing the other monuments en route only. I would have loved to spend a whole day walking through Sultanahmet..

Despite being rushed for time, us girls managed to shop in Grand Bazaar, which seemed like a magical Palika bazaar - complete with grumpy shopkeepers and flirtatious salesmen! I was entranced by this lamp shop and I wish I could set up a similar room in my home as well.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008



Dashed off for a quick weekend to Pondicherry. What a sweet little town! Spent an enjoyable two days eating, shopping and enjoying the sea (or is it the bay?) Auroville is an interesting place and a must see for anyone visiting Pondy but I do confess – I spent more time shopping in the 3 boutiques than investigating the spirituality of the township.

Matrimandir is a splendid but am the only one who thinks it looks like an alien space shuttle? And I was a little disappointed that we couldn't go any closer or even inside. Ah well, maybe when I become an Aurovillian?


But the most spectacular part of the trip was sitting and watching the waves crashing onto the rocks – what beauty, what violence, what serenity – simply amazing!






Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Interlude -Jaane Tu..


When I first saw the trailer for the movie, I was convinced that Jaane Tu.. would be just another teeny bopper, candy floss movie. The debutante Imran too has an uncanny resemblence to Faisal Khan - Aamir's ill-fated brother - which reminded me of the insanity that was Mela. But after being told by a number of people how good the movie was (esp compared to Love Story 2050) I decided to go watch it. The saga of watching it is a different story altogether. But I absolutely loved the movie!
Its fun, cute, hilarious, enjoyable and with 2-3 really good numbers and not one item number or any overt mention of sex or any Emran style kissing.. What's not to love?
The real star of the movie are the dialogues, the production and the editing. It takes you along and doesn't give you time to dwell on niggly details like Imran (im)mobile face and Genelia and Manjari's irritating acting. Naseruddin Shah and Ratna Pathak are hands down fabulous in their scenes together and everytime an actor starts singing (Jaane Tu in the beginning, Tu Hi Re by Rothlu, Jaane Tu in the end), you can't help giggling and then guffawing!
Imran is 100% star in the making and his chocolate boy looks seem great for his current age but unlike Shahid Khan, his bone structure indicates a very handsome old man too. None of the other kids stand out but then this is his star vehicle..
A definite must watch and then another watch..

Friday, July 04, 2008

American Saga - Part I

Charlotte, North Carolina is a lovely piece of suburban America – totally wholesome and delightful. But yes, one does miss the occasional Indian face (since it is overwhelmingly American) and we didn’t see a single Asian taxi-driver either! My brother’s apartment is simply adorable and I adored the pretty flowers and garden just outside his door. What struck me was the apartment’s sheer self sufficiency (kudos to my brother as well) whereby it’s a joy to take care of the flat and live in it.
The neighborhood grocery store – mysteriously named Harris Teeter – was stunning for its sheer range of products. Even a Hypercity in Mumbai can’t beat it for the absolute number of brands available in any product category (though Harris Teeter is much smaller). I also got a good look at TiVo and believe me, I’ll be the first to queue when it launches in India. I got to see all my favorite shows – seasons ahead! – and recorded whatever I missed! American ads are a bit boring compared to our song-and-dance routines but they were surprisingly more intelligent. Of course, the absolute most fun thing was the shopping! Be it low cost Walmart or Target or the expensive (for us!) Macy’s – I went berserk buying whatever I could. Sigh, am quite sure I spent most of my dollars in Charlotte only..

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Ahoy there!

I never realised just how far the United States of America was till I travelled there by air! Phew, we're talking 30 hours of travelling including 3 flights and assorted waiting times and check-in time and baggae collection time. And let's not even get into getting over my fever (thanks to freezing flights) and jet-lag!
Still when I did recover it was to appreciate this country - a lot! First stop in this vacation is in Charlotte in North Carolina - not listed in Lonely Planet attractions but still genuine Americana.. Lots of space, well-behaved people, this city is very quiet and extremely polite!! I felt shy here saying Hi to every sales person who's shop I was window-shopping in.
But the best part is definitely eating and shopping! Tried Twinkies and grits and Cajun food as well as Wendy's and pancakes.. Shopping is making me wish I earned in $ and I think even that wouldn't help much :)
Took a weekend trip to Smoky Mountains and really enjoying the scenery and the weather.. Wow.. so much to see and so little time...

Sunday, June 08, 2008

Ciao!

I had planned a couple of posts based on books I had read recently - Daughter of Persia - and movies I had seen in the last 2 weeks - Indiana Jones, Narnia, 21, Sex and the City and Sarkar Raj.. but work and boredom intervened..
Now I'm off to the States and hope to post a little more frequently from there - Charlotte, Washington DC and NEW YORK CITY!!
Ahoy there :)

Friday, May 09, 2008

Americans are NOT stupid - WITH SUBTITLES

Ohmigod- I'm inclined to think this is fake except Jay Leno did a similar section on the Tonight Show a few years back. I believe there are as many ill-informed (read stupid) people in America as there are in India or any other country.

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Kasamh Se!!

V and I were doing a little maths the other night while watching another episode of our love-to-hate soap Kasamh Se. The soap is about 3 sisters focussing on the eldest played by demure 19-year old Prachi Desai. Now she stood in for her younger sister during her marriage so we assume she started off being 19 years old on TV. (Her younger sister was supposed to be married to Mr. Walia and assuming legality, she would be 18 and her elder sister Bani at least 19). Now despite her new hubby furious at her deception, marital relations were still on (men!) so she has twins who die when they're 4 - yes, yes very sad. That takes her to 24 yrs. Then due to some scheming she gets banished from her hubby despite being pregnant with her daughter (Ganga for those who really want to know). There was some sort of time jump because we next see her when Ganga is about 6 and in school and all. Age check - 30 (we're giving her the benefit of one year less because she was enciente when she got thrown out. Ok, now she gets back together with her hubby (who's re-married by the by) and has another set of twins. Another generation gap and actress change and now we're 16 years ahead. So she should be 46.
Technically this role was to be played by the 19 year old Ekta Kapoor favourite but she's onto bigger things - namely Farhan Akhtar and Bollywood. The actress currently playing the role is TV veteran Gurdeep Kohli who is older at about 25 but definitely not 46!. Oh well, that's the way the cookie crumbles in Balaji-land. And let's not even get into how Mr. Walia (played by Ram Kapoor) ages in the serial since he was the older man (complete with white streak in hair) when Bani got hitched to him to begin with.

Sunday, May 04, 2008

IPL Twenty20 Match

360 degree experience of Royal Challengers vs Deccan Chargers at Chinnaswamy Stadium on 3rd May 2008

Challenged and Charged



There are days I simply love my company and yesterday was one of them. No, I didn't get a raise.. I got tickets to our corporate box for an IPL Twenty20 match. Granted it was between the Royal Challengers and the Deccan Chargers - 2 teams who seem to be competing solely for the Fair Play award and granted than I almost sold my soul for the second ticket - it was still worth it. Chinnaswamy stadium was choc-a-block with people eager for some fun on a balmy Saturday afternoon. But we parted ways with the public when we swooshed up an elevator to the 4th floor where the corporate lounge was (oh la la!). It was a bit of a red light area with Kingfisher colors everywhere but it also looked very classy with PYTs dressed in red escorting us to our box. When we entered the box, the view was phenomenal! We were directly in front of the pitch facing the Force 1 model car and the Royal Challenge stage. The stadium was simply huge and branding was everywhere - I was hard-pressed to find a patch free of commercial branding. The stands were disappointingly empty but by the second innings when a Bangalore victory seemed probable, it filled up.


For me one of the funny (and silly) things that struck me was the time lag between the TV view and the actual play! It was kind of like when Harry Potter went for the Quidditch World Cup in GOF. Ok, ok - I'm a bit of a geek as well. Oh yes, I also sounded really smart (in front of the office gang) when I was clearly astounded when the bowler went to the other side to bowl every other over. Hey, it doesn't happen when you watch it on TV, you know. And it might be sour grapes, but I thought the hot cheerleaders were terribly unco-ordinated and disappointing. I wonder what they've been told - when the ball goes out of the field, its like a touchdown so dance like you mean it??!! <meow>


The free food and liquor was really cool though I hated the Zinzi champagne and I refused to drink the Romanov based cocktail - hey, I have standards you know!! But the choice of single malts, scotches and whiskey was truly luxurious..Then there was the fact that all the commentators went up and down the stairs bringing me that close to greats like Sunil Gavaskar, Ajay Jadeja and Rameez Raja (of course someone pointed him out to me - duh!)One of my favourite moments was when the crowd got really into the mood of the game and did the Mexican Wave - it sounds cheesy but it reflects the energy to a tee. To be totally honest, I didn't really care who won but the last over was rollicking and the fireworks that went off when the home team won was the perfect cap to a wonderful experience.

Friday, May 02, 2008

The Latino Comedy Project's

Hilarious Spoof on one of my favourite movies ever! Sharing the video also spares me posting for a while :)

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Timbaland - The Way I Are OFFICIAL MUSIC VIDEO

Adore the beats on this song - not so sure about the video!

Vacation Time

Its that time of the year again.. Family vacation time! Every year, mum, dad, brother and I get together (usually in Delhi) from 4 corners of the world - ok just four different cities - meet up.
Its lots of fun and generally consists of lots of food, shopping, parties and at least 1 fight! Can't wait..

Friday, March 28, 2008

Go to HAL

There has been a lot of furore over the new airport in Bangalore. Numerous citizens have come out in full force against the closing of HAL airport saying it takes too long on crowded roads to get to the new airport. For my own part, I wasn't too fussed as the the new airport is marginally closer to my office and home - about 30 km. Unfortunately for me, I had to travel out of Bangalore last week. And boy was I in for a surprise.
After battling traffic for over an hour, I reached an airport that looked less than a airport and more of a railway station! Maybe I'm just spoiled after using Mumbai's newly re-furbished airport for almost a year but nothing could have prepared me for the absolute madness that is HAL airport. It is impossible to tell which gate to use to enter, the check-in counters fight for space, the security gates are choc-a-bloc and once you reach the boarding area, you struggle for a place to stand! I kid you not. Boarding gates change depending on which flights are late and which are not, causing serpentine queues of travellers to move en masse across gates. And trying to grab a quick bite before you board a no-frills airline (which charges you 100 rupees for a sandwich!) is next to impossible. Even my brand's scroller is lost among the crowd and I'm contemplating asking for a re-fund from my vendor!
My vote's now firmly for BIAL. Even if I have to travel 30 km to the airport, a trip which shouldn't take more than 30 minutes, at least I can relax once I reach BIAL!
And if my accurate description isn't enough, the news that a Kingfisher ATR had to crash land because it hit a jackal on the runway should make any Bangalorean opt for BIAL over HAL.

Friday, February 22, 2008

History on drip

Phew what a week! Been loaded at work and when it seemed that my weekend was going to go the same way, decided enough was enough.
Bought a new phone - Nokia 5310 - a slim Xpress Music model. Despite everyone (who's opinion I value) telling me that Nokia's phones were going down the drain and reccomending everything from Sony-Ericsson and Motorola, I bought a Nokia. Don't know why but I learnt my lesson the first time around when I bought a non-Nokia phone. Just too used to the Nokia brand, I suppose and while people might say I'm being lazy, let's admit it, this is one brand that is almost intuitive in its interface. Anyway, decided to go with a blue phone (well, they didn't have pink!) and it looks quite snazzy! The only problem is that its so thin, I keep forgetting its in my pocket!
Also saw Jodha-Akbar, managing to squeeze in a show in the ubiquitous First Week - ok ok it was last day last show! And I really wish director-ji had stuck with the love angle and given the politics a kick. Ash and Hritik look dreamy and their chemistry is perfect - don't even bother listening to their dialogues! But what I really liked was the way the Rajputs spoke in perfect shudh Hindi and the Mughals lyrical Urdu - never mind that I was guessing most of the meaning. However, the second half is just soggy and my hand was itching for a fast-forward button. The battle sequences couldn't hold a candle to LOTR and I really wish they had stuck with good CGI instead of hilarious looking extras. All in all, worth and dekko but one needs a lot of patience for this movie.

Friday, February 15, 2008

Bah Humbug!

I don't know why but Valentine's Day always brings out Scrooge-like tendencies in me. Don't get me wrong - I love receiving roses and chocolates and protestations of love delight a closet romantic like me. But I draw the line at dedicating love songs on air to some hither-to unknown person and soppy classifieds make me gag.
We celebrated Valentine's Day in office with a profusion of red and white balloons strung all over and roses to be given to the person whom one loves the most. Needless to say, I swiped two roses and they now reside on my very own desk! Meanwhile, we also scarfed down chocolates dutifully distributed by HR.
Oh well, wonder what we'll be doing on Good Friday.

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Glitch in the Matrix

Yes, its déjà vu time. I’m back in Bangalore again..I have such mixed feelings about this city. I’m not looking forward to the endless traffic jams (if I get the company car soon) or the haggling with the auto-wallahs (till I get the company car!) or the absolute helplessness when someone lapses into Kannada. At the same time, I still love the weather – can you believe it’s warm here while Mumbai was chilly! And I love that Cornerhouse is still around and my second-hand bookstore Bookworm should still be there. I can’t wait to pig out on the Brown Bomb dessert and spend the weekend happily browsing through piles of books. Ah and also to catch up on some much needed sleep! I actually wake up by 7:30 am and am in office before 9:30 am!! Shocking but true.. Will definitely miss Mumbai with its party places and gazillion movie theatres and yes, I’ll even miss the local trains! But its nice being back in a place one knows a little and reacquainting myself with all my favourite spots. And let’s face it – the languid pace of Bangalore has always been more my style than Manic Mumbai.

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Must Try


This is a really wonderful site where apparently for every word you get right in the vocab test, 20 grains of rice is donated to help end World Hunger. Best part - it marks your vocab level as well. The top level would be 50 but the highest people have gone is 48. Me - I'm still languishing at about 43 with a mixture of guesswork and actual knowledge. Gah!