Thursday, August 19, 2004

Mogambo.......... Khush Huaa!!!

One of the most recognizable quotes in Hindi film history I'd say. Not THE most recognizable though. There are quite a few that rank higher probably. And Salim-Javed have probably penned most of them.

I remember talking to a very good friend of mine about how there doesnt seem to be any movie that both of us liked. Mr. India was the only movie that we could think of which both of us seemed to like. But the thing is that none of us had seen it recently. I guess the last time I saw it was back in 1980s. Might even be 1987, when it released. Even though I was barely 6 years old then, I remembered some parts of the movie and thought it was a pretty entertaining movie. However, one can't be too sure about these "bachpan ka impressions". So, I decided to watch it again and see if it really is as good as I thought it was. And I was pleasantly surprised when I saw a lot of scenes which I didn't really remember in a lot of detail and which were really good. And not just because of their entertainment value.. some of the scenes with the children were quite touching. I guess Shekhar Kapur is good with children. (I have noticed a correlation between good storytellers and children's movies i.e. either made for children or featuring good child characters. Spielberg comes to mind.. So do Satyajit Rai and Mani Ratnam.. not that there aren't great directors who haven't made children's movies, but I think there is at least some substance in the hypothesis).

You have to hand it to Salim-Javed though. They have penned some of the most memorable characters in hindi cinema's history. Gabbar is obviously right at the top. The angry-young Vijay, Arjun, Shaakaal the bald and then Mogambo in Mr India. Even though I personally wasn't too impressed with the cartoonish Mogambo, it was definitely intentional and was probably lapped up by the kids in the audience.

In fact the movie didn't seem too good in the beginning. The sets/costumes were pretty garish and I thought it really must've been one of those bachpan ka impressions that don't continue after you grow up. But it was only the Mogambo part (his set, costumes of his servants etc.) which seemed that way. They tried to make it very cartoon bookish with all the "Mogambo... khush huaa!! and "Hail Mogambo" stuff and the way they show him drumming on the globe at his hand rest and the "acid tank" melting the gun etc. But once the prefacial (no need to go to freshly coined!!) stuff about Mogambo and the invisibility gadget gets over and the story moves to Arun, Calendar and the kids, it really is entertainment all the way. A lot of funny stuff involves Seema (Sridevi.. I had forgotten that she can give be very funny indeed!!) and her editor. Actually probably more her editor Mr. Gaitonde (Annu Kapoor) and his telephone. Some of his hilarious scenes/quotes are:

1) wrong number. The person thinks that he has reached a vet's clinic. editor picks up and speaks : Hello!!.......arre aapki bhains ne doodh dena band kar diya to bhaai main kya karoon?
the other guy : aap kuchh to keejiye na sir?

2) Seema: Sir! main ek phone kar sakti hoon?
Editor: haan bilkul! karo karo! lekin karogi kahaan se?
Seema (confused): sir! is phone se....
Editor: kisse? isse? ye phone kahaan hai Seema, ye to radio hai! kabhi... (some lines I don't remember) ... aur kabhi mohabbat se lada gadha, mohabbat se ladi gadhi se gadhepan ki baatein kar raha hota hai.. karo karo! phone karo!

3) Seema: Sir! aap meri baat samajh naheen rahe hain!! ye jo Mr. India hai.. vo dikhaaee naheen deta!
Editor: Dikhaaee naheen deta? to kahaan rehta hai? ye aajkal apna malhotra bhi dikhaaee naheen deta.. kahaan rehta hai vo? dikhaaee de to mere paas bhejna..

4) Seema calls Mr. India to meet her editor as he doesnt believe her about the invisibility thing.. so Mr. India is sitting in the office and the editor is looks awestruck.
Mr. India: kya baat hai Editor saahab, aab thheek to hain?
Editor: Hain jee?... haan jee thheek hoon.. kamaal hai seema ek to ye dikhaaee naheen dete aur oopar se poochh rahe hain ki main thheek hoon ki naheen..

5) Mr. India: maine suna aapne seema ko naukri se nikal diya hai
Editor: Arre sir kya baat kar rahe hain aap? hamaara akhbaar to ek chhoti si family hai.. main kaise seema ko nikaal sakta hoon.. vo to bas jab isne kaha ki aap dikhaaee naheen dete to......... lekin ab jab maine aapko dekha.. mera matlab hai naheen dekha.... to... dekha na.. ki naheen dekh sakte....

Anyway, the movie is filled with such funny stuff... like..

Arun: Calendar! ek to mujhe ye samajh naheen aata ki tumhaara naam Calendar kyoun hai?
Calendar: vo mere maa-baap ko kuchh angreji mein naam rakhna tha isliye..
Arun: Calendar, agar tum roz isi tarah late uthhte rahe aur mujhe hi bachchon ka saaraa naashta banaana pada to main tumhaari salary mein se kuchh na kuchh zaroor kaat loonga..
Calendar: zaroor kaar lena.. isi bahaane salary to milegi... by god kaee maheene ho gaye salary ki shakal dekhe hue. kis color ki hoti hai?

Then the parody song about the football is a riot! Javed Akhtar has written the lyrics and they are stupendous!! The song, the picturization, the lyrics.. everything is superb!! This is one thing that I had forgotten about the movie. It was really superb!!

And there are other songs which are pretty hummable and picturized quite well too. "Zindagi ki yahi reet hai", "Karte hain hum pyaar Mr India se", "Hawa hawaii" (not a great song but some funny picturization.. remember "seene se raaz chura loon..haan chura loon..haha chura loon"?) , and the erotic to the hilt "Kaate naheen kat_te"

On the whole the funny parts of the movie stand out in one's memory but there are other scenes that are quite touching. Tina's Bomb blast scene is definitely one. The way she keeps saying "Arun bhaaya, vo kya hai? Umi.. vo kya hai?" with a bit of apprehension and a little smile just takes your heart... so do the scenes when there is no food for the kids...

Not that the movie doesn't have any flaws. In fact it is a dream movie for someone who likes to pick little plot holes/unrealistic script elements as it is overflowing with them. (And I do have a friend just like that. absolutely loves to keep speaking about the little inconsistencies while watching any movie. Amazing how can someone enjoy ANY movie when all the attention is taken by plothole hunting!) But its entertaining all the same. Definitely worth recommending to anyone who hasn't seen any bollywood movie and wants to see a "typical bollywood" movie. This is typical bollywood at its absolute best. (So is Sholay IMHO, but I guess a lot of people who don't know about bollywood will be more put off by its resemblance to Seven Samurai and Once upon a time in the west)

Wednesday, August 18, 2004

RSC and its lingo

RSC here stands for I used to be quite an avid reader of RSC (not a poster though) some time back. Then last season ended and I sort of moved away from usenet. Now, with new season around the corner (I don't consider any tournament in SL as part of apna season, specially if India doesn't perform well there ;) ) and with my qualifier over and my movie watching form still far from its best I have enough time to start browsing through RSC posts again. I don't expect many of my friends to be lukkha enough to know much about RSC postings, so I decided to make a posting about it, specifically about some interesting terms/acronyms coined by RSC junta. In no particlar order, here are some of them..

WAB: Weak Attack Bully : depending on which team you support and which batsman you hate, this can be used for any batsman who has been having a good run with bat lately. Currently it is used for Kallis a lot. Sachin has been called that in past by quite a few (some do that even now).

SOB: Second only to Bradman : started with Sachin and that oft-quoted Bradman statement. Has since become a joke of sorts. People now use "second only to" quite generously, almost always sarcastically. for example parthiv is SOG (Gilchrist), Flintoff is SOB (Botham), Agarkar is SOK (Kapil), Sehwag is SOS (Sachin) or SOG (Gavaskar), Sachin is SOW (Warne). You get the picture.

ODO: One Day International : I don't know how it began but it seems no one uses ODI or LOI on RSC.

FTB: Flat Track Bully : similar to the first one. has been used for Sachin most often. Specially when he was hitting ODO centuries in every other match in the subcontinent/sharjah.

Yuseless Singh: Yuvraj, who else? : This one had me LMAO. I guess it was coined by someone when Yuvraj was spending a nightmarish summer in England playing for Yorkshire.

Merrily-throwin': Muralidharan : Another spark of creativity from a fellow RSCian. Doesn't mean that I share his opinon of Murali. But one has to give it to this person. Merrily-throwin'!!!:)

Stuart Law: a pretty long standing joke. mostly used whenever someone asks about people's favorite cricketer or the best batsman in the world or something.

Aag! Fire!: Agarkar related : in a lot of variations. I remember seeing a lot of "AAAAAG!! AAAG!! FIRE FIRE!!" on RSC when he took 6 wickets in the adelaide test. Firekar is a common term too.

Thursday, August 12, 2004

copyright of unpublished ideas

If you are wondering why don't I have interesting postings on my blog its because there are no copyright laws for unpublished ideas. Vivek keeps stealing my thunder by somehow reading my mind and posting about whatever I am planning to post. The TOI thing was on my mind for some days and I probably WILL post about it sometime but Vivek has beaten me to it. ditto about google keywords. And that post about Indian team after the final vs SL.

Now only if he doesn't post about Mr. India for next few days...

Done with Esp1/Pds1 pathway!!

thats what I was busy with over last few days. Re-drafting of my qualifying exam written report. Have to submit it today and just finished giving finishing touches to the last figure. Its now no longer in my hands. If they want to pass me, good. If not, so be it. It'd be sad but probably nothing more than I deserve for the rotten performance in the exam. However, it'd be a pity if they allow things like my performance in the exam to affect their judgement of this report. I don't think this report deserves to be turned down. Let's see.

Anyway, bottomline is - I am back after a tiny little break.

Thursday, August 05, 2004

Amon Goeth Must Not Be Named!!

My blog is changing into a Harry Potter fanpage. The amazing thing is that there's no real reason for that to happen now. I mean the sixth book is still too far in the future to be a cause for excitement. And I haven't read any of the first five recently. And its not that I liked the third movie so much that my anticipation for Goblet might've increased because of it. Still, here I am, telling the world something that most people (who care about it) already know. Ralph Fiennes is all set to play Lord Voldemort in The Goblet of Fire. I am pretty happy with this news as one of my major concerns about the next movie was that they might make Voldemort into just another comic-book villain which will probably destroy my mental image of him and hence quite a bit of reading pleasure from next two books. They might still do that (and they probably will) but I think Ralph has the potential to be the sort of Voldemort that I'd like. The sending-a-chill-down-your-spine, merciless, sarcastic-to-the-core, sinister, condescending Lord of dark things. Ralph played Amon Goeth (hence the title of the post) in that stupendous piece of art by Spielberg - Schindler's List. He was absolutely brilliant! He did pretty good in The English Patient too, but its his Amon Goeth act that makes me so sure he'd be great as Lord Voldemort.

Tuesday, August 03, 2004


That's the verdict. But there's a bit of fine print to it too. It was my worst exam ever (except maybe the kannan/juvekar exam in 3rd year of IIT). Should probably celebrate that I don't need to give the exam again but how can I do that when I know I deserved to fail.

Monday, August 02, 2004

You will die!

That's one of the taglines they are using in the promos of "Vaastu Shaastra". Actually it is "This September you will die!" but that would make it less representative of my state right now. To me it reads more like "This August 3 you will die!". and if you notice the time of posting, its not far away.

Anyway, I was talking about "Vaastu Shaastra". I have seen only one trailer and for some reason I've got a feeling that it is inspired by "The Shining" - that great Kubrick movie. The same concept of a writer living in a secluded large home with his wife and child and the house being haunted. In fact there are some scenes in the trailer that seem lifted from The Shining. If it is half as good as that one, it should be worth watching. But I don't like the idea of RGV producing an "inspired" movie. Then again, he has already announced his intention of making "Sarkaar", a remake of The Godfather. So, why not The Shining too?

Thats it... if you don't see another posting in next two days, you can stop coming to this blog altogether. It won't be updated again. Unless they have internet in hell...