Tuesday, April 17, 2007

A tribute to Boredom.....

I was reading this post on one of my friend's blog named "The 'Stolen' Tag" ...more or less a tribute to boredom!!! and at the end of it...I was tagged, because I had read the post till the very end...hehehe...so, here's my list of things!!!

1. Were you named after anyone?
I was about to be named "Heli"...incidentally the Comet "Halley" was around in that year..but the pujari was kind enough to suggest to look for some other name starting with "H".

2. Do you wish on stars?
They just remind me of a quote by Einstein, "How can you look at stars and not believe that there is no God?"

3. When did you last cry?
Not sure...but then crying doesn't necessarily mean that it should end with tears....sometimes those unseen drops have too powerful feelings attached to themselves

4. Do you like your handwriting?
Only I seem to like it...although all my teachers in school used to say that it looks as if a cockroach dipped in ink has crawled over the paper.

5. What is your favourite meat?

6. What is your most embarrassing CD on your shelf?
Any empty DVD/CD...b'coz that's not the purpose of its existence...it has to have some or the other movie recorded!!!...heheh

7. If you were another person, would YOU be friends with you?
Oh yeah!!!...i would have wondered how can such people even exist??!!...nothing short of one of a kind.

8.Are you a daredevil?
hehehe....not really...although i tend to be devilish and mean at times.

9. How do you release anger?
Thinking...thinking...blogging at times...but i haven't found a better option to release my anger than watching a good movie..it's easily my favourite stress buster...favourite companion when i am alone.

10. Where is your second home?
Pilani :D.

11. Do you trust others easily?

12. What was your favourite toy as a child?
a monkey doll which my brother had...I used to throw it all over the place till mom scolded me.

13. What class in school/college do you think is totally useless?
Math till class 10!!! I used to flunk it lot of times...but then my perception changed...and I am glad it did.

14. Do you use sarcasm a lot?
Maybe not...but sometimes I guess I surprise myself!!

15. Have you ever been in a mosh pit?

16. What do you look for in a guy/girl?
Ability to sustain a decent conversation.

17. Would you bungee jump?
No...I am afraid of heights. But the day I come over this phobia..I would just love to do all that...

18. Do you untie your shoes when you take them off?
No, laziness prevails.

19. What's your favourite ice cream?
Anything except strawberry flavour....but Chocolate rules!!

20. What are your favourite colours?

21. What are your least favourite things?
Being the odd man out in a crowd.

22. How many people do you have a crush on right now?
hehehe...taken a break this semester..Who said I stopped!!!... the number is obviously bound to increase...I am gonna graduate this summer...yuppie!!!

23. Who do you miss most right now?
Company of all those I have been with over the past 3 years.

24. What are you listening to right now?
Some movie themes...Shivaji and Prasanna...and operas by Mozart.

25. If you were a crayon, what colour would you be?
Black/red...would wanna die soon and try to be something else...i guess that's what we all do everytime...changing ourselves to prove our existence.

26. What is the weather like right now?
Horribly Hot!!!..I can't even sleep these days.

27. Last person you talked to on the phone?

28. The "first" thing you notice about the opposite sex?
There is something called as "Likeable Index" in my brain...so, would see how likeable is she...of course in the first notice it's the physical apperance which counts!!!...(Muhahahaha...)

29. Do you like the person who sent you this?
Oh yes...tagged from one of my best friends.

30. How are you today?
As always- restless and Inquisitive....waiting to see if this day would be anything different from the previous one.

31. Favourite non alcoholic drink?
Chai...but these days...I prefer Coffee!!!

32. Favourite alcoholic drink?
Haven't tried much...I mean different Varieties..but then Vodka with a good amount of salt and lemon would be IT!!

33. Natural hair colour? Black

34. Eye colour? Brown

35. Wear contacts? No

36. Siblings? Yes

37. Favourite month? Feb.

38. Favourite food? Anything good...but then Chicken is always up in the charts.

39. Favourite day of the year?
None in particular...or maybe I have too many to figure out which one is more important.

40. Have you ever been too shy to ask someone out?
Oh Yes...everytime...too much of planning goes in..hehehe..but it's nice fun nevertheless

41. Scary movies or happy endings? Doesn't matter...as long as it is a good movie.

42. Summer or winter? Spring.

43. Holi or Diwali?
Both. Who cares, its holiday time.

44. Do you like your name?
Love it, although I wonder how it would have been had I been named "heli"...hehehe...

45. What book/magazine are you reading?
The City of Joy- Domique Lapierre...but dropped it for the time being...gonna read "The Animal Farm"-George Orwell... for the second time..i just lev it!!

46. What's on your mouse pad? Don't have one.

47. What did you watch on TV last night?
Not a TV addict when I am on campus...but late night TV is always reserved for movies on HBO/Star Movies at home

48. Favourite Smell?
Post Rain, Choclate....and the smell of chicken boiling with the umpteen number of spices...delicious!!

49. Have you ever regretted breaking up with someone?
Hehehe...haven't even started a relationship to break one!!...

50. Most tiresome thing you’ve ever experienced/done?
Just cannot figure out how to console my friends when they are not in a good mood.

How I wish this list goes on...now that it has ended...have to look for something else to do...I seem to have fallen in love with boredom...everytime I think I am bored...I end up doing something...most of the times it happens to be blogging....hahaha!!!

Seven Days...

Sometimes, all it takes to write a story is one idea which can develop into a series of thoughts....and finally you have your story. In my case this happens usually when I am travelling...many times I have had this urge to write something while travelling in Trains....so, here's one of my first stories...to be exact written in Summer of 2005 while travelling to Mysore from Bangalore....
(Click on that underlined subject...it will take you to a location where you will find the story)

Down the Road...

This one is the script for the first short film that we were supposed to make...although due to some technical problems we couldn't make the final 4 minutes film...anyway, here's how the stroy goes....

Down the Road...

“Dream big….it’s only when you dream big that you have the motivation to achieve something…

A person should always have dreams…..because dreams transform to action & action to reality.”

[The guy opens his eyes & comes out of the room…]

[Looks around for sometime & then stares at the Sun & again looks around]

[He goes and splashes some water on his face…]

“Hi….I am the guy next door and this is my story and maybe one of yours too.”

[Now, he walks down the road looking at his surroundings]

“Everyday I walk down this road, wondering if this is gonna lead me to a new destination.”

[He sees a crossing infront of him.]

“But always there’s this choice to be made. You wanna know what I do day after day? I follow the same route…life’s much simpler that way….as we are told from times unmemorable.”

“The question is what would you do? What would you do to make your life different?”

[He takes the road towards sky and on the way he sees some birds and clouds]

“I wish I could fly like them…I wish I didn’t care about anything & simply sway with the wind. I always wonder what they wanna tell us. But I later figured out there can be so many interpretations that it’s impossible to follow one. If you say it’s all science then so be it…but what if they tell us something. You can never be sure.”

[He sees the time & later the mobile phone. There are no calls.]

[He looks at the clock tower now.]

“That clock always reminds me a question someone asked me.

What’s the most exciting thing that you wished never happened? And I said, “I wish there was no such thing as time; I wish there was no such thing as a clock ticking away. It does bring some exciting moments with every second, but why do you wanna get past the time so beautiful; a life so beautiful.”. “

[He walks to sky and orders something….this is the first time the protagonist says his first dialogue]

“Pappu….ek maggi aur ek double chai.”

[He goes and sits in the lawns and looks at his mobile….again he talking in his head]

[He’s looking at a group of people who are laughing and chatting.]

“Why do I feel all alone in this huge group?

I feel all alone….

I was one among them sometime back, but what is it now? What am I even thinking???”

[He closes his eyes and there’s a dream sequence]

[Two people are sitting beside him and they alone talk; the main protagonist is sitting silent all the time.]

“You ask yourself too many questions my son. Be silent, ask yourself no questions and you will see how different things can be.”

[He is still silent]

“Did you understand what we are trying to tell you? Why don’t you talk? You have barely talked in the past few years with us. You have changed a lot. We never expected to see you in this state.”

[They go on and on with their thing….and in this scene some 4 more people enter the scene]

“You should listen to your parents. They care so much about you. They know what’s good for you.”

[Now the 2 member group starts speaking.]

“See…how many people are talking about you. They all care so much about you.”

[He’s still silent…now everyone starts shouting at him]

“What’s wrong with you? You think you can lead your whole life in a dream. Stop dreaming….start living in reality. Dreams are never true…they can never become true. Stop what you are doing…stop what you are trying to do…stop…”

[Suddenly the protagonist shouts…]

“Stop it...all of you. Let me ask you something since you seem to care so much about me.”

[All others stare at each other]

“What do you expect from me? What do you want me to do?”

[The 2 member group speaks now.]

“You are out of your mind. How can you ask such a question?”

“You are not answering my question.”

“That’s for you to decide… we don’t expect anything from you.”

[Saying this…they disappear]

“You…what do you want me to do?”

[They all stare at each other & they also disappear.]

“Where are you going? Answer my question….what do you want me to do? What do you want?”

[The protagonist opens his eyes…he sees the time and his mobile]

“Ah…the food is here.”

[He simply eats the food and walks away to his room.]

[He’s kinda feels elated…jumps and kicks his legs….Singing…goes away.]

[Final Voice over…]

“I had thought….that’s there’s no end to this … this life which doesn’t seem to change at all. I donno…I somehow seem to have an yearning to hear my mobile ring…every time I hear it ringing, I see that as someone acknowledging my existence in some part of the world. I feel happy that someone is thinking about me….but I wait….I wait…maybe too long.

We all wait for something to happen which would make our life interesting, but nothing happens & it’s the same story all over again. I don’t know if I see a light at the end of the tunnel. Even if I do…I wonder if I would recognize it. But if you do, the question is….what would you do? What would you do?”

***** THE END*****

Monday, April 16, 2007

Some of my favourite film reviews....

this one seriously rocks...have never read such a review!!

Another review

A review of a recent hindi movie...although the review of this movie has been quite differently presented in other websites and newspaper....but WTF....it's Rajeev Masand on CNN-IBN....i just lev him for his style and crticial analysis!!!....

10 reasons why you should stay awake all night.....

Here's my list of 10 reasons why you should wake up all night atleast when you are in campus....[:)]

  1. You have all the time in the world for yourself.
  2. You can surprise yourself with the amount of thoughts that your brain will generate in this hour
  3. Enjoy unbelievable speed on the net
  4. Watch movies….chat a lot…read a lot…..and yeah of course for some…ghot a lot
  5. Enjoy the silence of the night….there are very few things which come as close to be pleasant as this.
  6. walk out of the campus for a chai with some ppl and put latcha about every damn thing possible
  7. Watch the sky being spilled with the rays of a distant sun
  8. watch the moon fighting its best to maintain its existence, but eventually losing out to the might of the sun
  9. Watch the sky turn red with the rising sun
  10. Finally….you can see some of your wingies wake up the next morning and wonder what has he been doing all night….little do they know what they have been missing….of course…they never bother to look into the other side of the mirror…hehehe…

Sunday, April 15, 2007


He woke up from a dream that there's plenty of food around. Little did he know that not everyone can afford it. He smiled at the Sun which was just getting ready to stretch its arms. The same scenes of people jogging...of dogs barking...of parents carefully dropping their kids in school...everything that he knew, everything that he had known all his life...it was the same everyday. He went to the tea stall and asked how much should he pay for one plate of Dosa...and was heart broken when he knew that he couldn't afford it. He needed to get some money....somehow...no matter what way he chose to follow...he needed to get money. He was too proud to beg from someone, although the whole world branded him...saw him...as a begger. He knew he was good at painting...but couldn't afford to buy brushes. Somehow managed to pick up some small pieces of left over pencils from the dustbin of a stationary and before he could choose many...the owner of the store drove him away.

He sat down to draw and after sometime, he thought he amused himself. He was pleased to know that he was quite capable of creating such a thing. He displayed it on the road for the public to see his work...but none would spot him on the road. It was as if he never existed...although his form is quite visible..blame it on his shabby clothes. He could see the day pass by way too quickly...he had to do something to get noticed. He shouted...he pleaded....he begged people to see his work. Finally a gentleman was kind enough to stop by and see the work...
"Did you really do all this stuff?"...
"Yes Sir. I did..."
"Are you planning to sell them?"
"Well, if you quote a good price...then definitely yes."...
"Hehehehe....I don't think you are a man who would wait for a good price."
"Ah...prejudice!..I might have dressed badly, but that's not who I am...See me in what I do...see me in my work...and not in these clothes...they mean nothing!"
"Well I think...I will come back later to buy them."

The gentleman said this after he was rebutted....There, he could see, his only hope of buying a dosa fading away...he could see one more night of starvation ahead of him...he went back to the stall and asked him if he could eat for the day and payback later. He got thrown away.

He couldn't take it anymore...he cried. "Why does the world think I am capable of doing anything? Am I not one of them? Am I not like them??..." he thought...and he kept thinking. What he didn't know was, there's always a sunrise....there's always a curve down the road which will change the path. He slept for the day...and to his surprise he didn't feel the hunger anymore. The next morning, he woke up and again the same things. Just that, today everything seemed in a very different manner....because the thought of him being hungry ceased to exist in his mind. He decided that he should be on a quest to change things all by himself....while he was walking down the same old route by the side of the park, the gentleman who had promised to buy the paintings stopped him and asked,
"Young man..I want to see your art again...I wanna buy them this time."
"What art?? what buying? Who are you? Stop bothering me...go away."

The gentleman was shocked...he had just seen the affect of indifference....he had just seen what can a man do, when he's hungry....he won't die of hunger...he would not stop fighting until the day when he shall no more be hungry....but then he wondered whether that day would be possible??!! because there are just too many things to be hungry about...Justify Full

Friday, April 13, 2007

Three Movies that I would recommend you to....... not watch.....!!!!

Yes, you read it right....I am going to write about three movies that I would not recommend you to watch. I am not saying that they are bad or anything...but I think, they give the whole process of movie watching a new perspective. It's a challenge to watch these movies and after having done so, you tend to wonder...how on earth could you tolerate that!!!...so, lets start on the saga of exploring some of the most challenging movies to watch.

1. Taste of Cherry: Released in 1997, this Iranian movie was directed by the critically acclaimed director, Abbas Kiarostami. The plot basically deals with a man named "Badii"who's driving near the hills of Tehran, always looking for something, with a purpose of his own. He interacts with few people while travelling across the terrains and asks them to come along with him on an errand for which he will be paying a lot of money. Some people agree and when they finally get to the spot where Mr. Badii takes them, they are shattered at his request. One of them runs away on hearing this request, another is too flabbergasted and starts quoting the verses in Kuran which says it's a Sin to do such a thing. The request which Badii makes to them is,....." You see that small hole there under the tree....I am going to lie down in that hole and commit suicide tonight. All you have to do is come the next morning at 6 and see if I am dead. If I am alive, please pull me back otherwise, throw earth on my dead body."!!!!....And finally he meets a person who gives him a personal account of what happened to him and how the taste of mulberries changed his life...(extremely symbolic!!)...and the story ends with what happens to Mr. Badii at the end.

The reason why I say that this is an extremely difficult movie to understand is that, although it seems very simplistic that there's a man who wants to die and wants someone to be there by his side...it's the journey the day before that makes us ponder lot of things. Why does he want to die? Why doesn't he stop by an average person on the streets of Tehran and take them along with him?...at one point, after he convinces a young Kurd to come along with him...he gives his explanation of how it's the duty of every Muslim to help his fellow Muslim....he questions the Kurd's beliefs. I guess that's what the movie is about...it questions your beliefs...it makes you wonder why is he doing, what he is doing??...Nevertheless...this 90 minute movie depicts a wonderful landscape of the arid mountains and the signs of development in the city.
Most of the scenes are shot from within the car, so that gives a clear picture of his journey of Mr.Badii....he's so emotionless in the movie!!...no anger, no pain...just blankness which makes you wonder, what had happened in his life which has made him what he is now....and to be honest all these questions came to my mind only after finishing the movie...because all through the movie i was cursing the pace at which the story is told....and why the hell does he drive the car so slow!!!....hehehe

2. Cries and Whispers: A 1972 Swedish movie directed by another acclaimed director, Ingmar Bergman, deals with the relationships within a family. This is the story of Karin and Maria who come over to look after their sister Anges along with the loyal maid, Anna. Anges is taken ill and she is not expected to survive for long...and as the story progresses, mysterious and often sad relationships are unravelled among the members of the family. Marie cheats on her husband and has an affair with their family doctor David. Karin is having a very unhappy marriage and Anges suffers from her perrenial illness. After sometime Anges dies and Maria and Karin who were not in talking terms with each other try to mend their relationship. Finally both the families decide that everything in the mansion would be sold and they would settle down in the nearby city.

What's so striking about this movie is the it's use of silence throughout the story. All you hear is a silence which is momentarily shattered by the cries of agony, of pain. Also each one's life is full of secrets. The film is also about inter-sibling rivalry. In what is told as a series of events using the stream of consciousness technique, we come to know how each one had distanced themselves from the other. Karin says, "Mother and Maria always had many things to whisper about, but then they were so alike. Jealously I used to wonder what they were laughing at together. Everyone was in gay spirits, I was the only one who couldn't join in the merriment," continuing, "Yet I could not help feeling sorry for her... and now that I'm older, I understand her much better. I wish I could see her again...to tell her what I understand... of her boredom, her impatience...her longing and her loneliness." Also towards the climax of the movie, we come to know about Karin's hatred towards Marie all these years and her agony and pain that nobody has touched her in years....in between all this is the character of Anna, who wants to serve her beloved Anges and she does care about her like her mother.... we see there's hope left in Anges when she's alive...always dreaming of the days when they were happy and dreaming that, that day would come again. To sum it up all about what Anges thinks about, she quotes, " Come what may, this is happiness…here for a moment. I can experience perfection.”

What makes me so impatient about this movie is it's use of long gaps of silence...makes me impatient to quite an extent. Also, the use of the colour Crimson Red for the majority of the scenes has a great spiritual meaning to it....no wonder it is rated among the Top 100 Spiritual movies of all time.....

3. Nostalghia: Imagine a Russian director who's way beyond anyone's understanding living in an exile...what do we have??!!!....The answer is "Nostalghia"...made in 1983 by Andrei Tarkovsky. The theme of the movie is more or less longing, your yearning for someone whom you love, something that you miss because you are so far away from it. The main protoganist, Andrei comes over to Italy to study about a 18th century musician who used to stay in Bologna in Italy. Accompanied by a translator named Eugenia, both of them meet a person named Domenico whom the villagers believe to be totally eccentric. But Andrei begins his conversation with Domenico and before leaving he kind of understands the feelings and the reason for Domenico's eccentric behaviour. Eugenia over a period of time develops a soft corner for Andrei but he doesn't respond, so she leaves to Rome to meet another man of her dreams. Before leaving Italy, Andrei remembers the promise he made to Domenico that he would try to carry a lit candle across the dried up pool in the village. At the same time, Domenico comes to Rome to deliver his speech about the imporatnce of dreams in one's life and in a shocking ending, he immolates himself....the story ends with Andrei successfully crossing the pool with the candle and him dreaming of his home.

Have to say, this has by far been the most difficult movie for me to understand...and quite frankly i still don't to a great extent. The whole movie is interspersed with surreal and dream like sequences which depict Andrei yearning for his loved ones in a far away land. What's more terrifying is that, it virtually throws a challange to those who watch it....challenging them to understand what is being depicted. Because it's so difficult....added to that, some merely unbelievable long shots...sometimes extending more than 5 minutes without any editing!!!....but nothing beats the last scene where Andrei crosses the pool...it's an uninterrupted 8 minutes and Forty Five seconds scene....it really gets on to your nerves after those 116 minutes of abstract stuff. Every dialouge uttered has got a deeper meaning to it...and sometimes it might take a great amount of research to know what the character is saying. Tons of symbols are used in almost every possible scene...and how can I forget Water....there's water in almost every scene imaginable!!!....All these makes me wonder how does he do it!!!....How does he do it? Where does he get all these thoughts and ideas from??...it's like a gift which rarely people have...can't really write much about the movie, because I guess it has to be seen to be understood...words just cannot measure its style of filming.

Having seen all these three movies...I can say that, understanding the respective director's psyche changes your perspective of watching their movies....beacuse each one of these movies...cannot be understood...they have to be felt!!!....That's exactly the reason why I would not recommend them to be watched as movies....I guess after reading the whole thing, you would agree with me that these are no movies at all!!!!....These are not movies....these are dreams brought onto the screen by wizards of creation....these are like paintings and modern art which cannot be explained to others...they have to be felt and interpreted...And that's the reason why I would not recommend these movies to be watched just for the sake of watching a movie...because that way, let me tell you they might seem to be so boring...that it's difficult to go past the first 15 minutes!!!.....so, understand the psyche of the director and prepare yourselves......fasten your seat belts and get ready to travel in a dreamland....a dreamland of immense philosophy, a different way of looking at life and ideas way beyond expression....and emotions way beyond words....because that's what this is all about.....Trust me, if you survive this, you will hear the power of silence!!!

Annie Hall (1977)

Woody Allen's, 1977 flick "Annie Hall" is one of the few romantic comedy movies that carefully traverses between relationships and feelings for others without much of goofy/slapstick humour....it's very clever, the one which would make you smile for a long time. This Academy award winner comes in quite as a surprise right from the word go....especially the pace at which the dialogues are spoken. After adjusting your listening capabilities to the main protoganist, Alvy Singer (played by Woody Allen himself)...the dialogues from there on are so cleverly written that you wouldn't wanna miss anything. Here's a sample of some dialouges from the movie...

Mom: He's been depressed. - Suddenly he can't do anything.
Doctor: Why are you depressed, Alvy?
Something he read, huh?

Alvy:The universe is expanding.
The universe is everything, and if it's expanding...someday it will break apart,
and that will be the end of everything.

In another scene....

Girl: He kissed me!
Teacher: That's the second time this month! Step up here.
Alvy: What did l do?
Teacher: You should be ashamed of yourself.
Alvy: Why? l was just expressing a healthy sexual curiosity.
Teacher: Six-year-old boys don't have girls on their minds.
Alvy: l did.
Girl: For God sakes, Alvy, even Freud speaks of a latency period!

Another scene...Alvy is talking to his girlfriend Annie (Deane Keaton)

Alvy: You're having an affair with your college professor! That jerk that teaches that crap course, "Contemporary Crisis in Western Man."
Annie: "Existential Motifs in Russian Literature." You're really close.
Alvy: What's the difference . lt's all mental masturbation.
Annie: Now we're getting to a subject you know something about.
Alvy: Don't knock masturbation. lt's sex with someone l love.

"Annie Hall" is the story of Alvy and Annie who stay in New York....of how they meet and fall in love. And thereafter how their interests affect their relationships. After some months of on and off relationships, they realise that they still love each other...but one day after Annie's performance in a club, oppurtunity comes knocking at her door when some chap from a California's label company offers to record her voice for an album...so, Alvy and Annie go to Cali...Annie decides later that, she should carry on with the recording inspite of repeated requests by Alvy to come back to New York....Finally he comes back again to Cali after realising how sad his life is without her...but Annie refuses and insists that they can still be good friends....the film concludes with Annie moving back to New York and they meet each other and are still in good terms.

To some extent, it's also story of obsession...obsession to drive home your point, obsession to do everything perfectly...Alvy's portrayal of a man of 40, who has had bad relationships in the past and wants the present one to be a long affair is great. When I say great, I mean I have rarely seen a movie where someone talks so much about countless topics everytime there's a conversation. He just talks, talks, talks and guess what...you don't get bored of it...because he doesn't give you time to brood over it. And that's a good thing actually...you will know why, when you see this movie.

Another very important thing about this movie is the techniques used while filming. There are occasions where Alvy talks directly to the camera in the middle of a conversation, and scenes where Alvy is talking about his problems and thoughts and out of nowhere, he stops somebody on the road and asks them if they have a solution for it....also they transform themselves back in time to depict how life was in their childhood....

What does Allen say about relationships, " I think relationships are totally irrational, crazy and absurd. But l guess we keep going through it...because most of us want something out of it".

A nice movie and an interesting way of story-telling....do watch it...as Roger Ebert, the Pulitzer prize winning American Film Critic puts it...."it is Everyone's Favourite Woody Allen's movie"!!

Thursday, April 12, 2007

L' Appartement (1996)

I had read about this movie while reading about Monica Bellucci a couple of years ago. And I got lucky this semester...found this movie on DC++ last month. Finally saw this 1996, French movie last night. Here's my review or should i say what i liked in this movie....since i rate it as the second best French movie I have seen till now...topping that chart is another movie named " Amelie".

A romantic, thriller and a good amount of suspense...that's how i would classify this movie. The story revolves around 4 characters, whose lives are intermingled with each other. The film opens with a scene where Max is buying a wedding ring for his Fiance who's gonna marry him in sometime. Then on his way out, he meets his buddy Lucien who has been out of touch for quite sometime now. After their conversation, Max goes to a restaurant where he has a deal with couple of Japanese and we come to know that Max is on his way to Tokyo that same night. But before leaving that place, Max sees Lisa (Monica Bellucci), his estranged girl-friend and tries to follow her and finally gets to know where she lives. Finally the next day he goes inside her house to surprise her when she comes home....but to his surprise he comes to know that he has been following the worng woman...Alice....and then their lives are not the same again....

Revealing the story further would be a total injustice to this splendid story...more than that...the brilliance of story-telling. The film doesn't follow a particular chronology, but whatever chronology that we see in the film leaves a deeper impact. I don't think if the scenes were arranged in a proper sequence, it would have made a mark. Editing is very nice and also the transition of one scene from another. Acting is nice...since each character brings out the emotions of what they are going through...be it a person who's trying to find his lost love; a person who's trying to fall in love; a woman who doesn't really understand whom she loves the most and the other woman...personally i felt this one was the best....the one who's desperately waiting for the person whom she is in love with, but when he's finally with her she doesn't tell him the truth....untill one day where their lives and dreams are shattered and they move on.

This is a story of fate....of how fate determines the turn of events. It is also a story of, how far can you go to get the person you love. With a rather unexpected ending, where I still wonder couldn't it have been otherwise...but later i tell myself that's how life is. You really cannot do much about it...just going with the flow expecting that it would all end well...as it is supposed to be. Please do watch this movie....you will enjoy it....if not anything, guys, you can drool over Monica Bellucci...she looks so babe in the movie!!!!

To put it one sentence..." It is a Jig-saw puzzle which is beautiful even though, it's not set in a proper sequence. Because that's life."

Verdict: MUST WATCH......

Movie Mania....

There are few people around us, who call themselves as aficionados...about music, games...MOVIES etc...and i can comfortably put myself into the movies category. Thanks to the presence of hundreds like me on campus, there's never a shortage of cinema and the more encouraging of all this is that...no longer do we amuse ourselves by watching Regional and English movies...we are kind of exposed to world cinema as well. In campus, a general observation is that people like Korean movies and other languages...i don't think they would take that risk, unless someone recommends it. But there are always those who don't wait for others...they just do it in case of cinema. and maybe i am one of them too...

Once, a friend of mine asked me how can you watch all these foreign movies where you have to carefully follow the subtitles; once you skip a dialouge or don't follow something...everything else doesn't make any sense? Well she did have a point there...and i came up with an analogy, i don't know if it was silly..but this is what i had to say, "For me, Cinema is like an ice-cream...if you like ice-cream...you just really don't care about what flavour it is....of course over a period of time...you start categorising which flavour you like more....so, language is never a problem as long as the basic storyline is good."

Another time, while chatting with another friend, i said these words, "Cinema or movies....is of three types....
1) Movies which you can watch with friends on one of those hangout days with popcorn and cola in your hand.
2) Movies which you have always wanted to watch.
3) Movies which your friends or someone else recommends you to watch because they thought it was good.

Anyway, I guess in these last 30 days of my glorious college days, i hope i can as many movies as possible...don't really care about all that scientific stuff that...you will strain your eyes...and also what few might say that...watching too much stuff will make you go crazy...because I tell you what....believe me i am not wasting any time....this is also a hobby too...like playing cricket, reading books, collecting stamps....I love what i am doing....i don't see a reason why i should give it up at all in first place....

I love watching movies...because it's such a powerful medium to interact with the audience....it's one place where your dreams come alive...having said all this, give me one good reason why people should not watch movies??!!!

It's all about the Resume....

The other day, i was walking with a friend of mine and came across this bunch of guys who were having, one of those discussions over a cup of tea...and what i heard made me think for sometime. I remember, when i was sitting in the same place some 3 years ago, the discussion would go no further than who's the hottie on campus, nice gossip, who's hooking up with whom...you know one of those things which would light up your mood over a cup of chai...

But something has changed or maybe i have been blind to the change that's been taking place. Maybe this is not a universal thing...maybe there are still some people who have discussion like we used to have some time back....but invariably, every discussion these days should atleast have some topic of how the academics are going on...and friends meticulously guaging the number of problems that they have done from different books...(sometimes even sending the other chap into a frenzy when he realises that his counter-part has studied more than him)....and how pathetic or how wonderful the classes are going on...and most surprising of all the things....is one chap saying to another chap...dude, lets write a business plan...it would look good on the resume!!!....

Then i realised...that's the whole point...that's the whole point why we study for those 4 years...just 4-5 lines in your resume which would show that you have done something...or atleast pretend to have done something. For a moment, I thought if we could do something without considering that it would look good on the resume...I didn't have an answer immediately; but I am sure there is one...that's why i am still searching for one.

By the way, I seriously had no clue how to explain this thing about placements to a curious first yearite....after giving him a glimpse of how it is in psenti-sem...i wondered why he was asking me in the first place..that too in his first year....true that 4 years are actually too short in this place provided once you get used to its style of living...But i wonder what that chap could be doing now...maybe start doing all that quant and DI...and also vow to make 10's every sem...you never know...!!!

afterall, whatever we do....has to do something with making your resume more attractive!!

Animal Farm...

The last time I read a book was I guess 7 months ago; this book named "Kite Runner"....a brilliant work portraying the coming of age of two friends under the cultural impact and later the terror of Taliban in Afghanistan...and today, something struck me and I sat down to read again properly without any disturbance. And it was "Animal Farm" by George Orwell...

I was actually glad that i was reading a book which was not more than 100 pages long...so, would complete it in 2 days or so...and given the reputation this book has in the literary circles, I thought it would be something which would advocate strong philosophy or the point of view of the author...
But it turned out to be quite a thing after i read it...took me around 3 hours to read the book, i still can't believe why i wasn't watching a movie or playing songs while reading it.

Thanks to the writing style of the author, there is not much to be pondered upon while reading the book. Of course, it's highly political and a very subtle current passes althrough out the story about the world politics during world war...but it's never said so. The kind of langauge that the author uses is what baffled me the most...quite simple to understand and contemplate and even the pace at which the story moves is good enough to keep you engrossed till you finish the book...quite inspiring actually for all those who want to write some good stories. I mean, this is a good example of how to keep things simple, yet drive home the point.

Revealing about the story wouldn't make much of a sense...b'coz it's clear that, it's not the point at all. it's the satire that one must understand and brood over. In a nutshell, the story could be described as Power is what distinguishes the mediocre and those who have it.....as Orwell puts it, "All Men are born Equal, but some men are more equal than others".

Highly recommended...

Thursday, April 05, 2007

The Others-1

I am back...i guess there are no better words to describe my long absence on my blog...hehehe...i am putting down this story that i wrote some days ago...hope you will enjoy this one...please do....leave your comments and suggestions


DISCLAIMER: All Characters in this story are fictional; any resemblence to a character living or dead is purely coincidental and unintentional....

Also, some part of this story is influenced from one of my favourite movies, "Iruvar" by Mani Ratnam....so, the movie plot that you will subsequently read here is my tribute to that movie; although some things have been altered to suit the present story....this is to convey the message that there is no plagarism and i would let the story speak for itself....hope you will like this one...



- Hemanth Kumar

What is it you ask from God every time you pray? Health, Wealth, Peace??!!!....to be honest, I don’t want all that…and I really don’t know what I should ask Him every time; but somehow I am left with this empty feeling that my prayers have been missing that special element which would make all the difference.

I walked out of the temple that day with the same old feeling and this time I had decided to come with a proper request that I would pray for, next time.

“Ah…here you are. I have been looking all over for you. Come here and help me out in the kitchen.” My mom was telling me as soon as I stepped in my house.

“Come on Ma… I don’t have time for that, remember, I told you that I wanted to go to this movie with my friends.” Saying so, I rushed out of my house. Actually I did have time to help her out, but was too lazy to do the daily chores…

“Macha…you got all the tickets kya? We are total 11 in number.” We started looking around and saw that Raja was missing from the group.

“Shit man!!!...this bugger ditched us this time too. Asshole, he must be hanging around with his new set of friends…” some of my friends were bitching about Raja.

“Yeah dude…why wouldn’t he??...these days he’s surrounded by chicks almost all the time.” Right at this moment, Raja walked in with some group of gals and few guys. He waved at us when he saw us in the cinema hall.

“Ah…brilliant. Just in time…sorry da, couldn’t help it; those gals wanted to come along at the last moment, so couldn’t say no to them.” We were literally growling at him.

“Anyway, I shall catch you guys later…seeya.” Saying so, he went away along with his gals.

“Did you see that??...I am telling you something is wrong with him…well, maybe I should say something is different about him now. He behaves as if he has got this halo around him! Macha…I really don’t understand why he is putting some much weight around these days…” these were some of the quick murmurs I heard as soon as he left us.

“Leave all that da…maybe he’s not doing that after all. We are just thinking too much about it. We don’t see him around that much, these days, that’s it! Now since when did that become equivalent to avoiding us?” I started saying. But, something was not right with what I said. I realized that maybe I was trying too much in defending him…too much actually.

“Phew…lets get inside, the movie is gonna start in sometime, we shouldn’t miss the beginning.” And the movie began.

There is something wrong! Don’t you people realize that? We don’t have the rights the same way as people in other part of the country have. What should we do? What should we do?”

The people who had been listening to their leader talking all this while, started shouting in unison, “Revolution!!!”

“Yes… that’s it…we need another revolution. A revolution which would make our point very clear…a revolution which would make our voices heard in the capital. I can see that happening already. I can see that happening right here. In your eyes…I can see that revolution. Now, tell me, are you with me in this revolution?”

He was expecting a reply but he was amused to see all the people running towards a convoy of cars which had come just then.

“Please make way…please make way.” The supporters of actor Kumar were screaming at the hordes of people who wanted to catch a glimpse of their favourite actor.

“Ah…how blessed are we to have your presence here. “

“My dear people…this is a great day for all of us. God has answered our prayers and he has sent his messenger to finish the task that we wanna do. I present before you the man who’s gonna be our face for the revolution…Filmstar Kumar”

There was uproar all around…a different kind of uproar which Kumar had never seen. He could see the people go on rampage just to hear his voice and catch his glimpse. The whistles were gone now. He could see their eyes filled with hope that life would change. And they placed their hope on this newly proclaimed messiah…

“What I see here today overwhelms me. For the first time I can see a wave so big that it has the power to become a tsunami. Not the one which kills people….the one which has the zeal to unleash its power and those who don’t yield to its power would get washed away. This should send out a warning to all those who neglect us! Let there no longer be darkness in our lives…let there no longer be sorrow in our lives…are you with me in this quest??”

“Yes….Yes….Yes”….that was all what everyone could hear.

“To the revolution!!!” Saying so, all the people on the dais stood up holding their hands in air together….and there were claps around….claps….

“Macha…pass me that coke na” “…dude you want some??”

Mr. Kumar is leading the election by more than a lakh votes…there was an announcement in the counting centre.

“What are the results from other places?” Reddy asked his commander-in chief, Naidu.

“Everything is going as planned Reddy garu. We are leading in most other places. Clearly we will have a majority to form the government.” Naidu explained to his party-head Reddy.


By the end of the day, the results were out and there was celebration in Reddy’s camp. They had won by a huge margin. But one room in the office was filled with all the silence in the world. A silence whose outcome would shatter someone’s dream…a dream which drove him to achieve what some people thought was impossible.

“What do you say? Both of you are like two eyes for me. I can’t really say which one is more favourite. But we can’t sit silent all day. Someone has to be ready to come second.”

Naidu looked into the eyes of Kumar. And both of them smiled at each other…it was not a gesture, but a compliment that neither of them had anticipated that they would have to make such a decision.

“It’s upto you Reddy garu…whatever you say.” Both of them had reached to this conclusion.

“You have again put me in a fix. Hehehe….I would have never dreamt of anyone other than Naidu to be my successor; but we have changed our course in this election. We went by a new strategy named Kumar this time. There’s no doubt that your star power helped us win this time. You are the face of our revolution…of everything we wanted to be. “

But Naidu couldn’t stop what was going in his mind to come out of his mouth.

“But I worked so hard for all this…all these years.”

“I understand all that Naidu….but you have to understand one thing, if we don’t declare that it’s Kumar who’s gonna be the next CM then we might lose the people’s support. It might destroy everything that we fought for. You will be the Home Minister…always the most trustworthy person around. What say??”

Naidu couldn’t refute Reddy’s claim. And he smiled in meek submission. And there it was…Kumar was declared the new leader.

Things which were not supposed to be forgotten were lost. Those we wanted to build an empire got crushed under the weight of the new dreams. No one realized how strong the pillars were nowadays. Kumar’s popularity soared and everything that Naidu dreamt to be, he found it in Kumar. He was almost there, but maybe he wasn’t destined to be “The One”…he just remained one among “The others”.

“Macha…I shall see you tomorrow da…don’t forget we have that class tomorrow.” I bid my friends good-bye for the day and went home.

The Others-2

Days passed by and things changed a lot. I was missing a lot of things…missed how I used to smile sometimes….missed how people used to talk to me once. Then one day, a thought struck me, maybe I should change. I should change because if I don’t then no one would recognize me anymore. I would be just a memory of the past which has no meaning…at most maybe a good thing to have happened in someone’s past. But then I wondered what should I change to make myself different? Is it my clothes, the way I talk, the way I behave?? Or is it the way I see things??...

I wish I could be a super hero, who could solve every problem in a jiffy…I wish I could be a versatile genius whose talent would make others jealous!!!...but I was neither of what I wanted to be.

One day, I was sitting by the side of Raja and then some more of his friends joined us. We started talking about so many things, but I chose to be a silent spectator. I wondered at the depth of knowledge they had on various things, to be honest it literally made me feel small in front of them. I wondered how someone could be so intelligent. I tried to add in a point or two, but it didn’t make a difference….or should I say, it wasn’t the point, but I didn’t make a difference in the conversation…hehehe… I was there all the time, but no one would pay attention to me…no one would see me…no one would listen to me… that was the day I was a ghost!!!

Ghosts…ghosts…they are everywhere. Just that the ghosts don’t say or realize that they are ghosts. Everyone lives under the pretension that everything is going alright. There’s no need to any change. But then is it the case??? Or am I asking the wrong question?

Raja was good at singing. Infact that was the thing that brought us together. I would say I was his first admirer. And ever since he started practicing professionally, I was his best supporter, always there for him and admiring him for everything he was doing. I wished I had a voice like that…and one day the dream came true...not mine, but his. He sang infront of a huge audience; it was our college cultural fest. And I saw his face that day…his eyes filled with pride of achieving a dream…a dream which was burning in both our hearts…to be recognized….and he piped me on this one…he piped me. Anyway I was happy that he became a celebrity of some kind in college and that I was his best friend. Actually people just know me as the chap who hangs out with Raja most of the time…nothing more, nothing less…isn’t that good enough, I asked myself? And I know there’s an answer. Just that, I have to search for it under this pile of bizarre thoughts which always seem to lead me to a new conclusion…one that is most of the times not expected.

Things went on like this for quite sometime and then something happened that day…something which I hadn’t anticipated. I woke up with this feeling of being incomplete. Not that it was a bad dream that morning….the problem was it was an incomplete one. Hehehe…I was this firm believer of the concept that dreams early in the morning always come true. I kept on thinking about that…I couldn’t recollect anything. But I didn’t give up; I kept on thinking about it for quite a while. Finally, I gave up.

But wait...there was still one last hope. I remembered the promise I had made God that I would ask for that one thing which was missing in my prayers. I knew this was the one thing I wanted to ask Him. I closed my eyes and praying God. I…I…

I saw Him…in my prayers.

“Who are you?” I asked.

“Well, you just called me. How can I help you my son?”

“I…I…saw this strange dream my dear God. I don’t know what that was. I have never felt this way, but somehow I feel that the most important thing for me is to know what my dream was. Do you know what it was?”

“Hehehe…my son; it’s your dream. How can I see it?”

“But…but you are God. You know everything.”

“I know everything…because you believe I know everything. It can be the other way too.”

“No…no…that can never be the case. You like to play around, don’t you? But, I seriously want to know what my dream was.”

“Well…well, let us see what your dream is…you were walking on the road and someone stabbed you from the back.”

“No…No…I am pretty sure that’s not the dream.”

“You were falling down from the top of a building?”


“Then what is it?” He asked

“That is what I am asking you…that’s what I came here for. Ah…yes, I remember something vaguely; I was in this party…everyone was laughing and having a good time. I turned my head and found more people came inside the room. Suddenly my voice wasn’t clear any longer…the people around me were talking to me, but I couldn’t hear what they were saying. I suddenly felt everything was going blind infront of me…and I started running hither-thither till I turned into the direction where I saw the door…then I…I don’t know what happened after that. What happened after that, dear God?”

“Well…I don’t know. I didn’t have the permission to see your dream. You didn’t let me see it completely. You opened your eyes…why did you do that? “

“I don’t know…I really don’t know. I tried to look closely at the surroundings, it was something that I had never seen, I didn’t know anyone around. The only person whom I could recognize in my dream was me…”

“How do you know it was you?”

“It was me…I saw him.”

“It was just a dream…wasn’t it?”

“Yup…it was just a dream. But, it was me.”

“So…now you wanna know what happened to you in your dream.”

“Yes…Yes…I want to know what happened to me.”

“You, want to know what you did after that? Well…you got up and closed your eyes and started praying God to help you.”

“But, that’s what I am doing now….”

“Exactly…that’s my point.”

“I didn’t understand you…”

“Hehehe…the day you understand what I said, you won’t ask me that question.”

“So…should I wait for that day?”

“I don’t know…but I will be waiting for an answer….”

I opened my eyes…and looked around. I walked into the crowd which was oblivious of my presence; actually I was just another face they would come across. But that’s not a reason good enough to remember me. Isn’t it? I have to do something that would break the anomaly in their lives…otherwise I am just another person. There in the crowd, I think I saw the same face…the face of Naidu from the movie the other day. I couldn’t understand why. I wanted to see if it was for real and that I wasn’t dreaming. But the face just escaped into the crowd.

The Others-3

“Dei …here he comes.”

“Where were you dude? We have been waiting for you.”

“Well, I was just coming from home da…had some work at home.” I knew I had lied. I didn’t know why, “Anyway, where’s Raja; he said he would join us without fail.”

“Ah…here he comes. Finally you made it.” My friend referred to Raja who had just joined us.

In the course of discussion, I kept on looking for questions. Questions of all kind…why were we having that discussion after all; why was it so important than so many other topics? What’s gonna be the outcome of that conversation?....

Isn’t that strange? Why should someone look for questions? I think answer is just a matter of time if you have the right question. And based on your question, your answer changes every time you ask a different one. There are so many different interpretations of the same thing. Which one would you say is the right?

Maybe everything is right…but some things are more right than others….

“What happened dude? What are thinking so deeply?”

Raja broke my string of thoughts. And everyone was looking at me, expecting a reply. But I didn’t say anything; there’s always this mask…this smile which would assure that everything is alright. It’s a good technique…you should try it out too…they say you don’t lose anything if you smile!

I was looking at Raja now…was looking at his brilliance in talking to others…it’s like he was born with this charm that I always craved for….

“What makes you think, you are better than me?”

“What are you even talking about?”

“You know…everything. Just about everything...”

“Who said, I am better than you?”

“Everyone seems to believe that.”

“You sure that’s what everyone thinks? Or is it what you think?”

“I donno what to think…”

“So, you let others think on your behalf. Is that what you would have wanted? I am your friend dude. Ever since I have known you, I have never seen you with this state of mind? What’s wrong man?”

“What do you even care? It doesn’t matter what I think.”

“It matters to me…it matters because I am apprehensive that some of your conclusions might not be what they are in reality.”

“What is reality then?”

“I donno…what’s reality. But I can see that something is eating you up from inside. Something which you can’t let go in my presence. What is it? What is it?”

“I am just jealous…I am just jealous.”

I started speaking after a long void of silence. That broke the anomaly. Suddenly the ghost had woken up…it was no more a ghost now.

But the time in which I spoke those words was so wrong that my friends started questioning me if I was day-dreaming about something.

“I meant I am jealous that you hang out with so many girls…I wish I could do the same.”

“Aha…the cupid is sharpening his arrows…hehehe….sure man, I will introduce you to few gals, someday soon. I wanna see what you do.” He gave one of his evil laughs after that. And the rest joined him….

I wore my mask again…I smiled too.

I went home after our meeting and silently ate my food and went to sleep. But I couldn’t sleep. I walked towards the window to have a look around the city with its zillion lights. The wind brought with it some new fragrance of the moon lit night. And I turned towards my bed.

“Oh…shit!!!...Who the hell are you? And what are you doing in my room?” I had almost fallen back when I saw someone in room.

“Fear not my son. I can’t harm you. I came here because you wanted to see me.”

“I wanted to see you??...I don’t even know you; why would I want to even see you?”

“Are you sure, you haven’t seen me? You saw me in the movie the other day, I was Naidu. You saw me on the street the other day, whom you wanted to follow, but later gave up looking at the thousand other similar looking faces.”

“Ah…yes, now I remember. So, which one of them was really you?”

“Both or neither…whichever you believe is true.

“Ah…but why did you come now? I never called you or wanted to see you…”

“Hehehe…don’t be silly. You know that you have been thinking about me all the time. You think about me when you are alone…you think about me when you are with your friends.”

“What rubbish? I just saw you on screen for couple of hours…that’s it!”

“Are you sure about that? Maybe I am everything that you have been dreaming about. I am your thought itself…I am you.”

“You are me?? Then who am I??”

“Isn’t that obvious…you are me. Just that the difference is that, you are a ghost even though you are real…and I am a ghost in reel.”

“But that’s not true…I am in a way quite different than what you are.”

“What difference does it make? After all I am the apparition of your thoughts. The mask that I am wearing doesn’t make me different, no matter what we do; we are all the same.”

“I don’t believe you…”

“You can’t escape the truth…and the truth is…”

“Whatever it is, I don’t wanna know…”

“Hehehe…then don’t. But I will tell you what others say about it…the truth is everything that you are running away from. Truth is everything that you don’t wanna know. They say Truth is light; it will overwhelm you because you will no longer have to wear the same mask over and over again.”

“Stop it…stop it…”

“The question is what are you running away from? What is that you don’t wanna know?”

“No…I don’t wanna think or know what you are asking me. But do you know the answer to all that?”

“Neither do I…Didn’t you realize that I was you?”

“Wait…wait…where are you going? You can’t leave me…wait…wait.”

I could see myself confused…confused with the burden of unanswered questions. Anyway, I didn’t want to know any of those. I was happy till then…atleast that’s what I thought. I don’t wanna know the truth which would supposedly enlighten me. Whatever it is…I don’t care. I don’t want to break the anomaly to walk down the path of reality.

The next day I woke up…I didn’t have a dream. And I met my friends and Raja like I did everyday. I was still jealous.

And like everyday…I kept looking for questions. But one day, I chose the other way round. I got an answer….I got an answer that

“All Men are born equal, but some are more equal than others.”

I don’t know if that was my destiny…I don’t know if that was reality. All I knew was to try to keep searching…searching for things unknown, searching for things that were always in dreams….searching for things that you always wished for. And every time I came across some new thing, I wanted to know if this was the end. But I didn’t have an answer…so, I kept searching.

I want to be equal…that equal that I have always dreamt of. I don’t want to be the ghost around. It makes me quiver because one day when I am not the ghost anymore…I look back and I see my tracks missing.

I know this….I can feel it too…

I am almost there, but maybe I wasn’t destined to be “The One”…I just remained one among “The others”. But I don’t stop…I keep walking.