Monday, March 08, 2010


There are very few movies which captivate you so completely that for the entire time the film plays, you remain transfixed. There are fewer still for which adjective-brilliant seems justifiable, Rann simply happens to be one of them.

Rann is a purely intellectual experience. What made it so special? There were so many factors that made it the way it was but above all it was a brilliant story well told. The acting ofcourse was superlative. Amitabh Bachan as the head of the news channel India 24X7 & a reliable news anchor whom the entire country trusts, Sudeep as his son- hyper, young, just returned from the states who wanted to succeed at any cost, Riteish, as the journalist starting out, who wanted nothing else but to portray the truth like his idol Amitabh Bachan, Mohnish Behl, the rival news channel head honcho who was constantly sabotaging India 24X7, Rajat Kapoor as the cunning industrialist with no moral qualms whatsoever or Paresh Rawal as the absolute corrupt politician, each actor fit the mold so perfectly that it was as if they imbibed the very principles they so well portrayed.

It was perhaps that I was watching fiction imitating fact that made the movie so riveting and  the story so relevant. I remember once being told when I was very young, that a news reporter must always portray a news with equanimity i.e. he should report a bomb blast with the same sense of calm as a weather report. I was told that his emotions should never cloud the news, so that the viewer is not influenced by an anchor’s opinion but rather be given the opportunity to take in the facts and analyse them intelligently. This, I believed was the only way news should be told & ingested. So, in a way, Rann typified my beliefs. Sensationalism of news has become so rampant that it is often a shame as what passes of as “news”. Newspapers, tv channels, magazines - everyone is in a race to outbid each other in an effort to gain maximum viewership. Like Amitabh says in the end, even if we punish the people involved, it won’t solve the root of the problem.

What then is the Root of the problem? What drives the media to present news the way the do or rather present the “kind” of “news” that they do? It is Us, the Aam Admi,  R.K. Narayan’s Common Man or rather Imtiaz Ali’s Mango People. We watch & devour the sensationalized news so rabidly that they keep giving us the same high calorie, carbohydrated, fat filled juicy news for which actually, the apt term is Gossip.

Rann is a right movie made at the right time. More and more politicians are getting involved in the news business to the extent that we even hear of local politicians actually owning newspapers. Today, the very sanctity of information is threatened, more than ever before.

The movie drew so many parallels with the current scenario that it was hard to ignore. It’s a must watch for the thinking man. Most importantly, it asks a very crucial question-Is what is being said in the media truly a “fact” & who determines what really defines one.

 “Quis custodiet ipsos custodies” - Who will guard the guards?

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Changing World

What has happened to that world full of wonder, subtlety & mystery? Was that called Innocence? Was it just childhood? Or has the world really changed?

Perhaps it’s all of these.

There was a time when it was so easy to believe in elves, dwarfs & fairies. Knowing it was unreal yet believing in its reality. A time when anything was possible. Time and space could be bent if one wished hard enough. Secret islands with untold magnificence existed with unicorns and other long lost exotic creatures. Magic was around every corner waiting to be discovered. Every book an adventure of mammoth proportions. A rollicking, laughter filled ride. Where the television had shows like stone boy, jungle book and the news with Pranoy Roy with his “World this Week” was such a treat to watch. Where the one movie a week on Sundays was waited for with bated breath.

When u live in such a world its hard to come to terms with reality, with books of today filled with psychopathic killers, evil and sunshine barely coming through. Where the news is full of killings, riots, murders and acts of obscenity. Where one cannot watch a music channel for more than 5 minutes without cringing. Where reality shows with people bad mouthing others are the flavour of the season.

What has happened to this world? There’s so much hate, envy and deception. What has happened to love? Love- pure and beautiful. Love unspoken, subtle and strong? Love with the passion of Wuthering Heights and the subtlety of Pride & Prejudice. Is everything lost?

I hope not, there must still exist a few endangered species of humans who still believe in strength of truth and the power of love. Here’s a call to them: Let’s go back in time, delve deeper into life and discover that reality isn’t so real after all & magic isn’t really an illusion.

Friday, January 15, 2010


Stardust is a Beautifully written novel. The words seem to dance and there seems to be a sparkle in the prose, Neil Gaiman is indeed an artist.

The story though seems to be deceptively simple. Tristran is on a mission to get a fallen star for his beloved Victoria. On acquiring the “Star” he ardently believes, hopes and desires that Victoria would be his. But for this, Tristran must enter into the forbidden forest, where “nothing is as it seems”.

The book was a breath of fresh air. Its been a while since I was so tantalized by a book. I loved the conversations between the main characters in the book and the sweet talk, which generally comprised of angry insults been exchanged! A small excerpt:-

She: “ Yes, which only goes to prove that you are indeed a ninny, a lackwit, and a……….a clodpoll.”

“Dunderhead” offered Tristran “You always used to like to calling me

Dunderhead. And an oaf.”

The chemistry between the characters was Evident, the tension –taut and the book in short was brilliant.

[No. of pages: 248]

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Star Wars

This is perhaps one of the most loved and popular films of All times. It’s a cult film with a fan following that defies logic. Now, since I don’t live in a well or rather that my well has a good healthy radius I too had heard of this and though for some strange reason or the other hadn’t managed to watch the entire series, had seen enough in snippets to know its jist.

Now when Star Movies(a while ago) decided to show all the Episodes “In Order” someone like me couldn’t have been more excited. Finally, I figured I could actually see what the hype was all about, I presumed it was just the camera tricks and laser fights which caused the frenzy. But I couldn’t have been more wrong. It is conceptually perfect. George Lucas got it bang on right. I found the concept of the Jedi warrior more real than anything else. It is always the truth in fiction that makes them so endearing. If we see the teaching they preach it is the very same that is written in the Holy Scriptures. One must know no fear, fear leads to anger, jealousy & aggression. Isn’t this very often the premise of most paths? In my opinion, it is a resounding yes.

Now the basic concept is this: In the future to come there exists society with democracy ruling and the Jedi’s maintaining peace in the galaxy. The Jedi are a group of chosen people who are trained from a very young age to become the guardians of peace. They are people with whom the Force is particularly strong. They are exceedingly wise, strong and just. But, no matter how advanced this race is, the dark side still exists. And its lure is stronger and more apparent than before. When this very dark side begins to cloud the Jedi the problems begin and they cannot see the Evil force which exists right before them in the Dark Lord.

Then we begin to see the true meanings of the Jedi teachings and why attachment is the root of all problems. We see a truly gifted young one turn to the wrong side because of the very exalted emotion we call “Love”. There is a dialogue between Aniken & Padame in Episode III which I find exceedingly poignant
A: “ You are so beautiful”.
P: “ I am only so, because I am in Love”
A: “No, you are, because I am so in Love with you”

That I thought was more often than not, very true. We so often color everything with our emotions. When we are happy everything is yellow and lovely and when we are melancholy everything is blue and dark.
We then see how Ani becomes Darth Vader, how Padame dies and the birth of their twins who then restore the balance that Vader had shaken.

Darth Vader we then realize was not born a monster (as is generally the case), it was when his belief’s were shaken that he began to turn. The tragedy of his mother, his deep attachments, their tragic demise and his loss of faith in the Jedi cult became his undoing.

With the light speed with which we are advancing, the Star Wars kind of world doesn’t really seem so distant. We seem to be taking giant technological leaps with each passing year and as for our spiritual ones, the bridges are already built & are awaiting those brave enough to tread and cross over to the other side. May the Force be with us all.

Saturday, July 22, 2006


“God” perhaps is the most misconstrued, misused & misunderstood concept in the history of human civilization. Every religion claims it superiority over others. Wars, murders, bloodshed & hatred are all in the name of Their own God & the best part is-they don’t even know Him.

Who art thou? Or what am I? Both mean the same thing. So much of chaos right now prevails but in actuality one underlying principle is what exists. We are similar-- variants at most of an original seed. The nature or rather quality of energy is perhaps the differing factor amongst us. But that ofcourse means that we are an impure form-- that which can nevertheless be purified. When we seek the Why’s more often than not the How’s present themselves.

It is said that there are as many paths to Awakening as there are variant forms. So, no path followed by one can be followed blindly by another. Each has to seek his way, but perhaps if the variant follows a variation of a certain method, that also will yield results. Every religion in its essence is a method of Enlightenment. In a few it’s apparent, in others hidden, but always available to those who seek.

The depth of Its complexity is as startling as Its level of simplicity. Sooner or later, the rivers will find their way to the ocean. But, as we do so, let’s not dry up & make deserts but rather deltas along the paths we traverse.

Sunday, April 30, 2006

His Dark Materials Trilogy

This is the last series I read. The trilogy consists of ‘The Golden Compass’, ‘The Subtle Knife’ & ‘The Amber Spyglass’. These were written by Philip Pullman. The books had concepts which I never heard before and were quite fascinating, I really loved the idea of Daemons and wonder what mine would look like..
The series are based on this special kid Lyra on whose decision, eventually, the fate of the world would depend (some concepts though, just refuse to die). Anyway, so how this rebellious young one defies all odds and does what is her destiny is the premise of the trilogy. The first one I enjoyed b’cuz of the uniqueness of its ideas, the second, for its story and fast pace(& ofcourse, the introduction of  Will) and the third for its quotes. At the beginning of every chapter in the third book is a quote and/or a picture. They all are amazing one’s and the chapters should not be preceded with, without having first read them. I found to my absolute delight that they were quite a few by my all time fav- William Blake. Never have I enjoyed the words of one as much as those of Blake’s. In the book, even before I read who the saying was by, I would know which one’s are his, just by the way they touched my soul. Ever since forever, I have loved his poems and quotes.
So, I loved the third one for that alone, cuz somewhere towards the end, I felt that Pullman kind of lost the plot. But, on the whole, I liked the series.

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Tere Ishq Mein

Never have I, in my life heard a song which exudes such tangible sweetness & encapsulates sadness so beautifully. The first time I heard this melancholy masterpiece by Rekha I was moved to tears. Everytime I listen to this mellifluous melody, I’m enthralled.

“Tere ishq mein

Haaye tere ishq mein

Tere ishq mein... haaye tere ishq mein..

Raakh se rookhi
Koyele se kaali
Raat kate na
Hijraan waali

Tere ishq mein...haaye tere ishq mein..

Raakh se rookhi
Koyele se kaali
Raat kate na..
Hijraan waali...

Tere ishq mein..haaye haaye...
Tere ishq mein..tere ishq mein...tere ishq mein..tere ishq mein..

Teri justjoo.. karte rahe
Marte rahe..
Tere ishq mein..

Tere roobaroo.. baithe huey...
Marte rahe...
Tere ishq mein...

Tere roobaroo...tere justjoo
Tere ishq mein..haaye..tere ishq mein..

Baadal dhuney...mausam buney
Sadiyaan gini...lamhe chuney...
Lamhe chuney...mausam buney..
Kuchh garm the..kuchh gunguney

Tere ishq mein...baadal dhuney..mausam buney...tere ishq mein..

Tere ishq mein...haaye haaye...
Tere ishq mein...tere ishq mein...tere ishq mein...tere ishq mein...

Tere ishq mein...tannhaaiyyaan...tannhaaiyyaan...tere ishq mein
Humnein bahot...behlaaiyyaan...tannhaaiyyaan...tere ishq mein..

Roosey kabhi..manvaiyaan...

Tanhaiyyaan..tere ishq mein

Mujhe toh kar..koi din gaya
Mujhe chhed kar...koi shab gayi
Meine rakh li ...saari...aahatein
Kab aayi thi...shab kab gayi..

Tere ishq mein..kab din gaya...shab kab gayi..tere ishq mein..

Tere ishq mein...haaye ....haaye haaye...
Tere ishq mein..tere ishq mein..tere ishq mein...tere ishq mein...

Raakh se rookhi..
Koyele se kaali
Raat kate na..
Hijraan waali..

Dil sufi yeh thaa......
Hum chal diye...jahaan le chalaa...tere ishq mein..
Hum chal diye...

Tere ishq mein......haaaye...tere ishq mein..”