Category Archives: Movie

Renee Zellweger? Is it possible?

Last night a star re-emerged. Renee  Zellweger. Looking a tad, alright, to be honest way different. “Is it possible?” a friend asked. Unfortunately, his timing was off.

Let’s recap. A few minutes prior to that a link appeared at the bottom of a news article I was reading online — “21 pictures of celebrities with cellulite that you would wish you hadn’t seen.”

Curious about what this horrid cellulite was I clicked on the link. You know what it is? Maybe not? Well, I have been informed. It is a disease. It is not just ‘A’ disease, it is the worst disease a person woman could ever have.

You see, while we were growing up there were a few make or break beauty factors. Fat or thin? Thin? You got that one right. Good skin, bad skin (with acne, possibly scars and some uneven skin colour). Good skin? Well done. And oh yes, good hair. The rest was moot.

But turns out you can never have enough wrong with the human female body. You can’t  be too short. Tall. That’s what you have to go for. But, hey, not too tall…you won’t find a guy who’d want to date you.

You have to be thin but again not too thin, you need curves see? But hey, hey, hey that thing in the middle? Your belly? That isn’t a curve, God damn it! That is fat. Get that flat. NOW. You hear me? And now you have done it! It is too flat, woman!! Now it looks ripped! Look, some of the muscles show. Make that feminine right this instant! Same goes for your back. we don’t want to see any of those soft layers of adipose tissues! Toned, get them toned! But no knotted muscles! Na ah…that’s not feminine.

And, oh, those bums. Nice melons, girl. Now let’s see if they are firm too! Which melons, you ask? Oh, both the top and bottom. *snigger* Uh huh. We like them perky and firm, not saggy and ummm wobbly(?) Gravity shouldn’t have any meaning for you. Physics? Don’t bother about that. You are God’s best creation. Beat physics already. Good girl.

Let’s move down, now shall we? Ah. Those legs. Now that you’re the right height (not too short not too tall, remember?) let’s get those lovely long (not too long) legs fixed, shall we? Those legs they are supposed to touch and not touch just at the right places. Let’s have a gap at the top of those delicious thighs, where the legs meet. Then let them fill out. Hey! Wait alright? Go easy on the pizza already! It is supposed to thin down again. and leave a gap just above the point where the knees meet and then below them too!

Calves…nice and firm. Not too tight like sportsmen…very good. And…further down…na ah! Those cankles just won’t do. (Cankles being the term where your ankles are simply not adequately and acceptably bony and thin.)

Feet pedicured. Nail paints freshly done today and those hands nicely manicured. Even coloured skin all over the body. Very good.

You think that’s the end? You forgot cellulite, didn’t you? Ah, now cellulite.  That is the mystery I stepped out to solve today. You see cellulite is apparently the little dimples you sometimes see in your skin. Look  at your thighs maybe? Can’t see them? Stand in front of the mirror, turn around, lift that skirt high over the now firm bums and look again at the back of your thighs? Still don’t see it? Adjust the light in your room (this is so exasperating. Sigh.). Ah…see that? Yup. That’s  the latest criminal in your body. Dimples for the cheeks, not your thighs or stomach. Yuck! That’s disgusting, really. Get that sorted, will you?

Now going back north. Clear skin, check. Even colour, check. But what about those cheek bones? Get them higher! Do it! You know you can. Those lips don’t pout enough. How on earth are you going to get your boyfriend to give you that diamond necklace you want? Pout, pout, pout. All  the time. Yes. Pout. That chin is too big, yours eyes too narrow…no no…for you…the other lady…yes, you in the black shirt… Your eyes are just way too droopy. Also, pull those eyebrows up. Make that nose smaller. Get that skin stretched. Lose that flesh. Where you ask? Everywhere! But no, no, no. Not in your lips! Pout, remember? Fill those cheekbones out. No, your cheeks are way too round, girl, lose some of that flesh. Also, look like you are constantly sucking a really really sour lemon. Or that you are so hungry you need to constantly bite the inner flesh of your bottom lip.

And what the hell are you…yes, you in the white top, doing here? You are over 30 and have at least 5 of these points unchecked…just in your face. GET OUT! No. You aren’t  allowed to age. Nope. Nope. You get to age, when I tell you you get to age. Capiche?

Change yourself, look different. Change till I can’t tell the difference between you and the person next to you. That’s when you would have achieved perfect beauty.

And, now I am slightly out of breath. Maybe we’ll continue this lesson another day.

But, for now, what do you think? Is it possible? Renee Zellweger?

PS: I was asked which criteria I have checked. Ummm…well, I kinda lost the battle at tall.

Pran: The ‘Life’ of Hindi Cinema

Pran - Zanjeer

Pran – Zanjeer (Photo credit: Kaddele)

Sherkhan khud aaya tha, khud chala jayega.” And so he did. Pran Kishan Sikand, the gentleman villian, is no more. He epitomised villainous characters without making them inhuman. Who else could add little touches of comedy to the character of a villian, like he did in Half Ticket? I think we laughed as much at and with Kishore Kumar during the film as we did when Pran decided to jiggy with the cross-dressed genius (Kumar) during Aake Seedhi Lagi Dil Pe Jaise Nazariya.

The news of Pran’s death left a deep sadness among many of us – even for those of us who were born after his active years of 1940 to mid-1980s.

Till date villian means Pran (at the top of the list), followed by Amjad Khan, Prem Chopra, Ajit, Mac Mohan and a few others. Later villians, like Shakti Kapoor and even Gulshan Grover came across more like caricatures when compared to Pran’s quiet wickedness or Amjad Khan’s madness.

But how many of us don’t remember Sherkhan? Or Mangal Chacha in Upkar? Can you forget that man and the pain during the song Kasme Vaade Pyaar Wafa Sab Batein Hain?

Pran was a legend. Truly. If he played villainous roles with so much conviction that generation after generation parents refused to name their children ‘Pran,’ he also made us laugh in Victoria No. 203. He made our hearts melt in Zanjeer as Sherkhan, the benevolent brave-heart who was ready to lay down his own life to protect a friend; and as the stern grandfather, conflicted with his own pride and love for his rebellious grandchildren in Parichay he also made us weep silently.

Pran, the artiste is no more. And, unfortunately, we never did appreciate the man enough while he was alive. He got the Padma Bhushan, the third-highest civilian honour in the country, in 2001 – at the age of 81. He was selected for the Dadasaheb Phalke Award only this year – just a few months before he left the world. The man never got the National Film Award for Best Actor. I am sure many of you will remember some of the recent, younger awardees.

But, maybe, Pran Saheb, as he was known in the industry, didn’t need any of these awards. His fans would remember the man for everything he was, for years. The void left by Pran Saheb in the film industry could not be filled by anyone. It is yet to be filled.

(This blog first appeared in The Hindu Business LinePran: The ‘Life’ of Hindi Cinema | Business Line.)

The Dark Knight in dark times

So, I finally caught the new and much-awaited The Dark Knight Rises a few weeks back. Yes, it is too late for a review, and most certainly to annoy anyone with a spoiler, but that’s not the purpose anyway.

So, a week and three days after the movie hit the screens I convinced my otherwise uninterested sister to watch the movie with me.

We headed for the theatre – myself with lots of excitement and her indifferently asking, “So, is there anything I should know about the first two movies?”

Yes, that was my companion! Anyhow, we did manage to catch the movie.

And surprise of all surprises, as we headed out, she turned to me and said, “I actually enjoyed the movie.”

This is the same person who had once said about Harry Potter, “Such hypothetical nonsense.”

So, that got me thinking. What is it about super-hero books and movies that make them so popular?

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“Portrayal of real violence important”

Many parallels have been drawn for the Hindi movie, Gangs of Wasseypur. Some say it reflects a Corleone-like family revenge drama from The Godfather. Some compare it with the Spaghetti Western films of the 1960s and 70s. Some compare the style of film-making with greats such as Sergio Leone and Martin Scorcese.

The lust for revenge passing down generations may be similar to The Godfather. But no matter how close the Corleone-family saga may appear to the fictionalised account of real-life incidents in Wasseypur, in the coal belt of Dhanbad, the flavour — in songs, dialogues and backdrop — are a hundred per cent local. Continue reading