Guess who?

6 07 2007

This is an easy riddle. Identify this gentleman I found this pic here. Reply to me in comments if you got the answer.

© Writer’s Block


Testing testing

27 06 2007

Writing my first post from my mobile. I may edit it later.

Makkadman – Hollywood makes a Hindi movie

2 06 2007

Okay please don’t be surprised. Hollywood doesn’t really make Hindi movies. They just create movies that look inspired or similar to trashed Hindi movies. I’m talking about Spiderman-3. Well really, I didn’t think much of it, especially since I have watched both the previous movies.

Spiderman was about the creation of the legend in the city of New York. It showed his own fears, insecurities and his musings over the choices he has to make to lead a life of respect and use the powers he has acquired due to the bite of a genetically altered spider.

Spiderman-2 turns out to be my favorite of the three. Spidey was growing into a cult figure, he knew his responsibilities and he was fighting for the people who lay trust in him. it again showed his own insecurities but he is able to overcome them.Spiderman

Spidey-3 is different. Like Maggi hot and sweet tomato chilly sauce, it’s different. Well jokes apart, the difference here was that Spidey was not fighting for the people of New York, rather he was fighting against the man who killed his uncle. The killer had become the sandman. The sandman was not entirely the villain. He only had shades of gray. The real villain was the venom, which Spidey willingly lets take control of himself but soon realizes its destructive potential.

It had all the drama of a Bollywood movie. Spidey’s love for Mary Jane is well known and he blows it off by kissing Gwen Stacy. Eddie Brock is her boyfriend so obviously he is after Spidey and in doing so, acquires the venom and decides to use it against him.

Harry, Spidey’s long lost friend-turned-foe-turned-friend comes to his rescue at the very last moment. Okay, I think its enough, I’ve spilled all the beans I guess. No wait, there’s something that I didn’t write about and I will skip it obviously. I don’t want to spoil the climax. Go and watch it.

But there’s something more about Spidey-3. They didn’t leave any openings from this movie to create Spidey-4. Or do they really want to create another sequel? Personally, I have my doubts but with the way Hollywood works, I won’t be surprised to see another sequel soon. After all, there wasn’t any opening in Spidey-2 too but they created the sandman out of nowhere and made this movie!

It is good entertainment, especially if you want the kids to enjoy some breathtaking stunts. Overall, writer’s rating – 6.5/10

© Writer’s Block

Old Doordarshan Serials

23 05 2007

I have been a member of Orkut for a year now and one of the most interesting communities that I have found there is the Old Doordarshan Serials community (Sign in with your Orkut/Google account to view the community). I don’t personally know the owner of this community but still applaud his effort in creating this community which has a good 5000 plus members as of now.

People reminisce the good old days of television in
India. Back in the ‘80s and the early ‘90s when we had only two channels of the state owned TV station Doordarshan, we were practically over the moon when we watched our favourite serials. If I try to recall, I can still remember Chitrahar (a half hour program on film songs) was telecast every week on Wednesday and Friday at 8pm. Tuesday was the day when they showed a short play enacted almost without any retakes. Then there were serials like Buniyaad, Hum Log, Khandaan which brought many well known TV stars. Names like Alok Nath, Neena Gupta, Kanwaljeet, etc all became household names overnight.

I still remember the time when they used to telecast Mahabharat on Sunday mornings. That was the time when literally the entire nation would come to a stand still. The drama of the serials of that era was so intense that we viewers sat in rapt attention in front of the TV set. Compare them to today’s serials and you will find that they are poles apart. Today’s serials (most of them from the Ekta Kapoor stable) don’t even have a determined story. They go on and on for as long as 7 years (and still counting) and you will never see the head or tail of the story.

This Orkut community that I’m talking about has people talking about old serials, dating back to Hum Log. It makes me wonder, were there no serials before that? Or is it that members of this community are not so old that they can recall serials of before that era? Or maybe one good reason could be that most people at that time were so poor that they could not afford to buy a TV set and also the fact that television services were restricted predominantly to urban areas and with limited hours of programming, so people rarely cared to buy a TV set.

Still, it makes me feel nostalgic reading about all the good old serials of DD, some of which I don’t even remember. But looking back I do think that being the owner of a 29inch black-white Televista TV set dating back to 1969 does make me an oldie among TV viewers.

© Writer’s Block

Some random thoughts on the Indian Cricket team

15 02 2007

Indian team for the world cup has been announced. In a way it was on expected lines but still a few questions remain. First of all, why the experiments? We stuck to an experiment mode for nearly a year, trying out every new player who has played some Ranji cricket but what has been the result. Ultimately we have stuck to a team that was pretty similar to the one before these experiments started. Ganguly, Zaheer, Kumble are back. If we had to stick to the old guns then why did we overlook them in the first place? Greggie needs to answer this question.

Then secondly, there is a case for Laxman and Kaif too. Laxman was just plain unlucky to miss out on the 2003 world cup when his place went to Dinesh Mongia. He had hoped that he would play in this world cup but he’s not there in the team. And then there is Kaif, who was dropped due to poor form. He was also unlucky in a way because by the time he was dropped, his state team UP had finished its quota of Ranji matches. He had no other way of proving his form.

And then there is Sehwag. He has simply not learnt from the criticism given to him. Looking at the way he got out in yesterday’s match, I don’t think its right to take him to the world cup. He can’t handle the short pitched ball directed at his ribs. Wat’s he gonna do in West Indies? And he has got a lot more opportunities than Laxman or Kaif to prove his form. He is still there, they are not.

You think this team can win the world cup? I don’t think so. I’d be happy if they qualify for the semi finals. Read the rest of this entry »

Ambition takes you places

15 02 2007

Ever wondered how the late senior Ambani created a wealth that has so far remained unmatched in its sheer numbers? How did he make so much money that even after its division between his two sons they remain the biggest businessmen in the country? It is all because of ambition. His ambition gave birth to a peerless company that would go on to soar unimaginable heights of success. It gave rise to an industrial group that today is the most familiar name in every Indian household. Ambani didn’t believe in not taking opportunities.

This is the essence of GURU. Gurukant Desai (aka Gurubhai) is a believer in his abilities and does not let anything come in the way of his ambition. As he constantly says, he does not know the meaning of the word NO . He wants to be the best and wants to compete with the biggest businessmen around and he makes sure that nothing becomes a stumbling block in his way.

Gurubhai comes from very moderate means, having a father who constantly taunts him for his belief in making money by doing business instead of a steady job. But it is his desire for money that takes him to Turkey where he manages to earn a lot in a short time. He then returns to India, marries Sujata and along with his brother-in-law Jignesh goes to Bombay to trade in the cloth market. His first and foremost stumbling block comes in the form of getting a licence to trade in the cloth market, which is very hard to get. Whether he gets it or not is for you to see. I am not spilling any more beans.

Gurukant’s meteoric rise in the business world of India almost mirrors that of senior Ambani. Within a few reels you see Gurubhai changing his appearance from a young village boy to a middle-aged babu of the ‘60s, travelling in his brand new Mercedes and making money at the speed of thought! Some of my friends said that Gurubhai looked money-minded. I disagree. Gurubhai is ambitious, and he has all the traits that perhaps each one of us should possess. He thrives in risk-taking, has belief in himself and knows that he will not earn money just by sitting idle. He knows how to bend rules, how to connive with the netas and how to get things done in his favour. It is due to these traits that he earns a lot of admirers (like Meenu) and foes (like Shyam Saxena).

The movie is not only about Gurubhai. Sujata (okay, this is Ashwarya) is a good wife and knows that she is a partner in crimes of Gurukant (if at all they are proven). Manik Das Gupta is the idealistic editor of the newspaper The Independent. Shyam Saxena is a reporter with the Independent and as the film goes on, he reveals his true self which though not good, still it does no harm to his character. Meenu acts as his perfect foil and is literally in awe of Gurubhai.

The Performances
I thought Abhishek was superb in his portrayal of Gurukant Desai. He looks in control of the character he plays throughout the movie although I did feel that in the second half he was somewhat subdued. Only one scene towards the end makes an impact. In some scenes I felt that he was almost imitating the style of his father while there were some scenes where I felt that Amitabh (in his prime) would have done better.

Some of my friends said that Ashwarya was pathetic in this movie. I again disagreed. I thought that she has done a reasonably good job in her portrayal of Gurukant’s wife. Yes there are chinks in her acting skills but still she manages to carry herself well in the movie.

Vidya Balan. Hmm, what should I say about her? She is wasted indeed; still she leaves a mark on you as she plays the role of Meenu.

Madhavan as Shyam Saxena is also wasted although his role is not insignificant. In a way his role is a reflection of Gurukant’s misdeeds because Shyam also employs unfair means to get his works done just the way Gurukant did.

Mithunda is a transformed man. No longer will you feel that this is the same person who played Disco Dancer in the ‘80s and then did a streak of B and C grade movies in the ‘90s.

As for the music of this movie, I won’t say anything. Listen to it and get mesmerized by it.

My Verdict
To be honest, the second half was a kind of letdown after the near flawless first half. Maybe they needed to give Gurukant some more dialogues to speak; maybe they needed to give Sujata some more scenes about playing the helpful wife. Maybe just… maybe…

I still liked this movie. I liked it for Gurukant’s courage and ambitious nature. You have to possess these traits to be a winner. The movie is not just about Guru’s zeal for making money. It is also about what he had to do to earn the money and the trust of his shareholders. How you earn the respect of millions of people of your country is one of the highlights of the movie. Gurukant is admired for these very traits, just like Ambani.

Sreesanth rockz!

18 12 2006


Here is a priceless video. This was S Sreesanth’s reply after he was sledged to his limits by South African bowler Andre Nel. Having been at the receiving end of Nel’s sledges right through days 1 and 2 of the first test at the Wanderers, Sreesanth decided to hit back. This is one of the most pleasureable sight from an Indian batsman, even the greats like Ganguly and Sachin could not do anything close to this. Click here if you have difficulty in viewing it.