aristera says

Tuesday, January 31, 2006


Rang de basanti

With much trepidation, we went for the premiere show. The film had an interesting concept and a good cast (minus aamir khan). Was sure it would also turn out to be a big disappointment, after the debacle of 15 Park Avenue. Was pleasantly surprised. Was a very nice film. A film which finally understood the meaning of ‘implied’, ‘subtle’, ‘less is more’ instead of hamming (which a concept like this, it could so easily have fallen prey to). Stylistically shot (sometimes too stylized… but what the hell!). Like my friend B said about the first half, it looked like a slick music video. Apt. but well handled, sound cinematography, brilliant locales (a far cry from New Zealand, Alps, and Mumbai). Set in contemporary Delhi in the DU campus and the outskirts, this film’s strong point is definitely its contexuality. Relevant. It hits you hard.
Am glad I never went to college in Bombay. Colleges here impart sound education without any ideology. ‘Campus’ is missing as a way of life. The bonding on other campuses over the country is so different. Delhi University may have the drawback of the overtly politicized atmosphere. But that’s better than Bombay colleges’ apathy and ignorance. There is so much more to college life than jam sessions, chilling and other frivolous indulgences. I mean, these are definitely essential but there is more to it. At college, I had BIG fights with my head of department, faculty, administration, trustees, and the works. Because I believed that there was a need for a changeand because I felt that I was getting a raw deal. Because it was unfair. I wasn’t a rebel, per se. that would be a gross exaggeration. Like extempore said once about someone, ‘I can’t stand rebels without a cause’. The college fests here have too much money. The commutes take all the thinking time. Infact you spend all your time either commuting or thinking about which train to take to avoid the rush hour. This rush is not conducive to education, for sure.
Am digressing. It’s about RDB.
The way the film transcends the present to enter the past and vice versa is maturely dealt with. The title track is fantastic. Keeps ringing in my head. Ding ding ding ding. Soha (unlike her stiff performance in Antarmahal) is very restrained and convincing in the film. Waheeda is subtle and graceful, as always. The others are aptly cast (Sherman joshi, kunal kapur, sidhharth something) and do a very good job of it. Aamir khan sadly is too big for the film. He can not get over the fact that he is a ‘great’ actor. Over board at times, while decent at others (he is fantastic in the climax), he looks GODAWFUL.
All said and done, I think it’s worth a watch. Even the dimwits will like it. It plays to the galleries with the realistic but crass dilli-college lingo. Some of it is uncalled for and affected, some endearing.

Oh and republic day!
Yes. I hate Indians. I do. I love India and hate Indians. Uncivilized and hate it as I may, I will describe us as ‘monkey tribe’. While seeing the film, I cursed the Indian audience. Laughing at all the wrong times. Insensitive. Don’t deserve a good film. Saying things like ‘mind-blowing’ while Jallinwalabaug is being shown? Huh? DISGUST is the only word that comes to my mind. I detest people whose vocab is restricted to ‘rocking’ and ‘mind-blowing’ and ‘awesome’. May that cretin sitting behind me in the film burn in hell. The general audience was dumb and daft. The next day I saw a TV show where they asked people when was India’s republic day. People didn’t know that! When did it become a republic? Nada. What does republic mean? Zilch. UGHS. Pity. We are truly a THIRD WORLD COUNTRY. I hate Indians. We are A-W-F-U-L.

Oh a completely different note, I am puzzled with myself. Something I have been looking forward to for ages finally happened. It a fantastic step-up for my career. Takes decades for people to achieve it. I was waiting for it like mad. And that’s an understatement. But it happened and it just fizzled out. It was like a flat beer. I was like, wow. So now that we are done with that, lets go make some coffee. Nobody was excited. Nobody. Except my cousin. She’s the best. She wanted an autographed copy. Others were like ya cool. Whatever. Sigh. For me it was a milestone. my parents haven’t seen it yet, but were happy. My grandmom saw it and was happy for me. I wish atleast there was someone who would be as excited or a bit proud of me. Damn. I had sworn not to write about emotional stuff on the blog. Anyways. On a much lighter note, am rather vela these days. Not as much work. Suddenly. Wish I was reading. But I am on the fone all the time. Or sleeping early and getting up late. My favorite prof at college used to call me a ‘lazy lump of corruption’. Hehe. I now call my favorite student the same. Life comes a full circle. Wow, makes me feel ancient.

well i bought the mag a lil late . dont forget about the autographed snap that u promised.
p.s-am very happy for you and i am proud of you.
aparna - hug. you are the best!
i saw it too :)
its kewl. love the motifs on the roman blinds and the golden cushions of the 60's chair, a bit contemporary for my tatse, but very freakin cool, nonetheless. kudos !
oh wait, u dunno me, do u ?!
v's friend 'R' !

me !

p.s: oooh, the art work too. tres cool !
RDB - Every blog is talking about it, and I feel horrible that I'm not able to watch it, coz HK doesnt have Indian theatres! Suddenly, I miss Singapore. But will catch the movie... EVERYONE is recommending it.

As for republic day, I share your sentiments. I usually go for the flag hoisting at the Indian High Commission in Singapore, and a lot of my friends in India find that weird, because for them its just a public holiday where they dont have to wake up early. I suppose it takes time outside to understand the importance...

And sounds like you've published a book, or been featured in a magazine or something equally exciting. So a big congratulations :D
Ok ghar ki murgi going too far baccha...if cousin is a darling so am I ok? I've been freaking jumping abt it and sent ppl sms to buy the copy coz my darling frnd is being featured...hmpf.
Bon now that I'm done throwing tantrums (which never work) felicitations encore une fois pour ton debut media mon cher! Je t'embrasse..bisous! I knew you'd get here soon and trust me had you gone for that other offer as'd have succeeded there too. Mark my're marked for greatness. Ok enough ego massage for you :-)
Hope to see RDB today...
Ok, you're just going to give me a bad name, quoting me like that! :-)

Wanted to go for RDB but tickets were not happening hence went for Chronicles of Narnia, which was quite good. And about the event - I've been trying to get a copy.

Apparently, we do live in the armpit of Bombay - no decent magazine store or vendor. Will wait to comment till I see it. :-) But many congratulations, my dear - may this be the first of many!
i took your autograph and love u very much...kudos and all that darling...remove those jackie o's and flash that sweet smile...muah!
i am so ABSOLUTELY proud of you, babe! I've been telling everyone (and you!) for ages that ure a ruddy star!!!! i have, i have! and i'm so really sorry that lower parel doesnt have a mag stand, and that i have horrendous work hours! really, really am!

BUT: i DO love u, and ure work! ure ideas have made my home look good. so of course i love you!
oh for heaven's sake. what utter tosh. grow up. no one is not proud of you, but you'd still insist on being that way and making them jump through hoops to make you happy. and shame on you for saying half the things in this post, maybe im ideological at times and maybe this is one of those times, but like the movie says, you're not exactly helping y'know? Jesus, really. What's wrong with people. Why would you say that?

Sigh, never mind, i'm getting affected too much by this. but whatev. thats my take on it. and while i havent read it as yet, i do love you and i do adore you and i do asmire your work, and the fact that you're on your own and doing so well already.

Oh, and you should have written some more about Kunal. He's really good in the movie. And I do mean really good. hee hee.
i LOVE siddharth.guppie my boy we do have good taste. also love kunal kapoor.
multihued fly- sometimes u want to hear ppl say they are proud of you or that they love you or they are happy for you blah blah and all that.
its sharman and not sherman....
once again - hey thanks a ton. but i personally hate the art work. regressive bengal school trash.

casa - i saw RBD twice. and thanks.

geets - merci beaucoup.

extempore - bad name (smiling innocently)?

v - you are the best

closetalk - hmmm

blue green fly - there was a wee bit more to the film besides kunal, na?

aparna - true. true.

v - whatever!
:) then what do i say - ahem I kinda like the regressive bengal school trash !!

cheers !
once again - hehe. didnt mean to offend you, if i did. but... i really hate the art work.
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Dear Aristera,
I compltely agree with your take on college life in Bombay. They are nothing but degree/diploma spewing machines. In my engineering college there was absolutely no sense of anything beyond rabid greed to graduate and earn money. Sometimes I wondered whether it was I who was missing something. The ignorance is colossal, and what makes it worse is the smugness that comes with it.
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