Monday, November 28, 2005

The peach-river source away from the world

If you're wondering what in the world that means, it is the literal meaning of the Chinese word “Shangri-La” (Courtesy:Wikipedia). Shangri-La is something like the mythical “Garden of Eden” supposedly nestled away somewhere in the Himalayas. On Saturday, some of us went to watch the North American premiere of “The Legend of Shangri-La” in Cinti. More on that later. Do check out the show’s official website.

Here the grass can dance,
If you're not afraid to lay on the earth;
Here the stones can speak,
If you're not afraid to listen with your soul.
Here the mountains are close to heaven,
So the legends may live
in the songs of the shepherds.

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

All about movies..


A couple of weeks ago (or more), some 20 people in Lexington, KY were acting as testers for GMail for free...:) We exchanged around 100 mails per day, ostensibly planning acitivities for a weekend. To its credit, GMail didn't break..:) Amongst those plans were watching Gajini. After creating a lot of hype, we rented a projector and started watching Gajini. All our energy fell flat on its face because we couldn't last for more than 20 minutes...:( Surya seemed to act like Arnold Schwarzenegger's Terminator in parts. Riyaaz Khan did try very hard to act and ended up annoying me. Anyways, we never got past the part where Riyaaz Khan reads Surya's diary. RS and I were waiting enthusiastically for this one scene where Surya looks over the top of his coolers and removes them looking completely handsome in the process. We weren't disappointed but it did annoy a lot of people in the room..:) Song locations and choreography were good and I liked "Suttum Vizhi Sudare.." And I liked the romantic scene in the bus, where Surya tells Asin that he likes her. No flash. No razzmatazz. Just a very simple, casual and classy expression! In the end, we all ended up watching a documentary on Sachin Ramesh Tendulkar.


I llllllllloved this movie. It doesn't have any storyline to speak of. And me thinks the director got confused about all characters half way through. Initially Kalingaraayar is depicted as this terrible villain with two Telugu musclemen in tow. Then, he suddenly becomes very samathu and nice. Vikram wants to marry Asin and he does. Then he changes his mind and "advises" her about forgetting him (??!!!?). Manivannan and Pasupathy are awesome fun in this movie. I enjoyed all the songs and have been advising anyone who sees me to listen to "Thai Masam.."..:)) Despite my usual dislike of Vadivelu, I like his comedy in this movie. Wholesome, mindless fun.


Unfortunate movie...:( This director is doubly confused and all the characters are even more confused. There's absolutely no logic and thevai illadha advice galore in many scenes. Asin's character is rather cute. Vijay's dancing kept me enraptured during the song sequences. Tamilgrounds cut the song "Vadu Maanga"...:( Somehow sat through the length of this movie. Worst movie. Don't watch it if you can avoid it.

It is a cold, blustery Lexington morning with the possibility of slight snow showers. FYI, we are still continuing our e-mail onslaught in GMail and I am cozily humming..

"Kanvizhithu soppanam kanden
Unnale kanvizhithu soppanam kanden" :))

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!

Monday, November 21, 2005


Can someone make an appearance in the last scene of a movie and steal the show? In my eyes, that's exactly what Ralph Fiennes did in Harry Potter and The Goblet of Fire. Making an entry in the climax of the movie as Lord Voldemort, the handsome Ralph Fiennes was barely recognizable with his flattened nose, slit eyes and bald head. Slinky, sophisticated, almost effeminate yet subtly menacing, he was the embodiment of smooth villainy! Audiences are normally not very favorably disposed toward villains. To overcome that prejudice and actually earn a "wow" from people, all in one scene certainly takes talent..:) Looking forward to future editions of this Voldemort.
By the way, Ralph Fiennes is pronounced as 'Rafe Fine'. The actor is apparently very picky about his name pronounciation. FYI, lest he cast an unforgivable curse on you..:))
Read RS' version of our HP tryst here.

Sunday, November 13, 2005

Finding Nemo

I absolutely enjoyed watching  “Finding Nemo” recently. I have no “must-sees” or “cannot-watches” in movie genres and certainly have no aversion to watching action/gory/scary movies. But of late, scenes of unnecessary violence or pathos especially those involving young kids, have become very disturbing to me. Perhaps it is just one of those phases of extreme sensitivity that everyone passes through. If so, I hope to recover soon enough because action movies are certainly entertaining and I wouldn’t want to renounce them forever..:) Or perhaps, I am growing older and I’ve come to realize the value of certain things in life?
Either way, I am quite happy watching animated movies for now. The reason for this post is a statement by Dory (the forgetful, adorable fish) to Nemo’s dad:
“When I am with you, I feel like home!”
I had never given verbal form to that feeling before and when I heard it in that movie, it was like “Bingo!” I am one of those people who believe that “heard melodies are sweet; Those unheard sweeter” but some things do sound good when expressed in words…:)

Sunday, November 06, 2005

Story tag answered and a few other things....

Please welcome Lexington's all-rounder Ashokla to the blogging world...:)
Some songs have lyrics that you can just lose yourself in. On an otherwise dreary day, I was lost in appreciation of a few lines from the song "Engey Andha vennila.." from Varushamellam Vasantham:

"Mazhaiyil nadakkiren, kudaiyAi varugirAi
Veyilil nadakkiren, nizhalAi varugirAi
Dhaagam engiren, neerAi varugirAi
Sogam engiren, thAyAi varugirAi"

Thennavan had tagged me. So, finally, after days of procrastrination, here is my piece to the story....

He thought it would be an ordinary journey. Standing behind the pillar he watched the train snort arrogantly into the station. With each snort he was reminded of his grandfather's words "You will fail in the city and return penniless"; with every heavenward whistle, he heard his cousin, "Don't worry. Come here and I will get you a job at the construction site." Now he had a 34-hour journey to prove one of them wrong, and he expected the excitement at the end of the journey. He looked at his ticket once again: compartment S9 berth 23.

Pushing his luggage under the seat, he sat close to the window. "Papa, when will you be back?" - his four year old daughter Munni asked innocently. He stared into those soft brown eyes of the motherless kid. He held her frail palms in his, through the window. "Munni, Papa will get you a nice gudiya from the city..Say tata," his sister spoke to the kid, to avoid an emotional outburst. In a minute, the train pulled forward, and Munni's little fingers parted from between his. "I need to go..", he thought, "I have to, at least for Munni's sake.."

The humid summer breeze and the rattling train coaxed him into an uncomfortable state of drowsy consciousness. He dreamt that Munni ran away, the closer he ran to her, the farther she was, like a mirage. He woke up with a start and squinted at his watch."What is the time please?"A smallish woman, a meek voice as if she was scared that her existence would annoy someone. Her only noticeable feature was her rather large, expressive eyes."4.30"Something made him look at the woman again. He had stopped noticing women long back. Ever since Meenakshi passed away...

But this woman was different. He She reminded her him of someone he knew. In an instant he realized who and the painful memories came flooding back. She looked exactly like his childhood sweetheart Madhu. As teenage lovers in a conservative society, they had often met secretly and had declared undying love for each other.

Then someone had found out and all hell had broken loose. The elders in the village Panchayat had ostracized Madhu's family as she was from a lower caste. Unable to bear the humiliation, she had committed suicide by drowning. That was twelve years back...

Back then, he had thought that the world would stop for his grief; that life would still for his sorrow. He had learnt the hard way that Time's relentless march had little sympathy for anyone. Life had indeed gone on. He had met Meenakshi, loved her, married her, had Munni and lost Meenakshi too, all in a span of 7 years. Suddenly his small town and its confines seemed suffocatingly oppressive. He wanted to immerse himself in something bigger than his life and its problems and his little town offered nothing by way of distraction. He had decided to move to the city, to try his hand at new things and shake away the cobwebs of the past. So here he was on the train to the city. He started thinking about his new career in the city....


(Everything below the dashed line above should be copied and pasted with every accepted tag)

This is a Story Tree and is best nurtured as follows:
1. A blogger can add only 90-100 words (not more or less) at a time
2. All previous snippets of 90-100 words need to be copied before the new set of 90-100 words are appended.
3. Each entire snippet should be linked to the respective author (and not just the first sentence or so)
4. Characters, scenes, etc. can be introduced by an author
5. Bizarre twists, sci-fi, fantasy sequences are best avoided.
6. A tag must be accepted within 7 days else the branch is a dead branch
7. After appending 90-100, the Story Tree can be passed on to at most 3 bloggers.
8. If more than 1 branch leads to a blogger, s/he is free to choose any one of them but cannot mix the snippets of the individual branches.
9. The Story Tree is best left to grow than concluded
10. Please attach the image of the Story Tree below with each accepted tag (the link address can be copied and used).
And I tag: