Friday, March 23, 2007

As Graphic as it gets

I remember picking up a graphic novel by Frank Miller at Landmark (I like that place, good place to spend some time with books). Well, that was after Sin City had become such a craze and in every group, I used to be the only one who's not seen the film. I was booed with the same intensity and tone of the ad where the group shouts, 'Arre, ye PSPO nahi jaantaa"...
Well, I went through the graphic novel. It was a storyboard in itself. As the images hypnotised me, I said to myself, "there's no way, they can recreate this magic on screen".
I was so wrong. I saw Sin City today. Eyes glued to the TV screen, simply in awe of the visuals that flowed. You can call it a cult movie. You can say, its about a morally bankcrupt metropolis. Three different stories, many characters. But each one stays with you. Film Noir at it's innovative best!
I liked it when Clive Owen says, "Sometimes you can beat the odds with a careful choice of where to fight."
I have grown up on Amar Chitra Katha. Those illustrations have taught me sketching. They are also amazing storyboards in themselves. But its frustating how we have never achieved a masterpiece with our mythological tales which are full of action, drama, magic and what not!
Anyways, no point drifting from the topic. All you people, who haven't seen Sin City, believe me, the booing isn't for nothing. This is definitely a flick you shouldn't afford to miss!

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Waves breaking on the shore

It was hard to remember when was the last time, I had felt really really happy! A moment to cherish forever. Then last night at around 1 am, I was at juhu beach, watching the waves breaking on the shore! It was high tide. A young kid was playing with the waves. It was quite obvious that he was enjoying it. Enjoying it to the core. I decided to do the same. It was a funny little game. He would run after the waves as they receded and run away from them as they followed him. I played that game with the sea for almost half an hour. And believe me, I got it. I got a moment which made me really really happy. Something that I will cherish forver.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Three hundred and counting?

Saw the much acclaimed and much publicised 300 yesterday. It's a visual treat. The high-contrast images almost create magic. A very believable war sequence between 300 spartans and millions of persians comprising of monsters and freaks. With each throw of spear and swishing of sword, you see body parts blowing up in air, and you are awestruck.

But trust me, how long can you just go on admiring the sfx. With the audience knowing each and every trick that has gone behind the creation, don't you need more to keep their eyes glued to the screen. Something much more than the bollywoodian cliche of wife giving her locket to the husband heaidng towards the battle... Something more than the "motivational" dialogues like 'Tonight, we dine in hell!"... Something more than the queer-looking Xerxes screaming aloud!

Well, the soul was missing.

The film wasn't half as inspiring as Gladiator or Troy. None of the sequences will stay with you after you leave the hall. But still, there are few dialogues you'd like to remember:

- Give them nothing! But take from them everything!

- Then we will fight in the shade

- Return with the shield or on it

I'd like to see the film "The 300 Spartans" released in 1962. Just to see how they'd have created the magic then, without the help of high-class special effects. They must have surely concentrated more on the emotional aspect, right?

PS: The guy who played Xerxes is Rodrigo Santoro, the same guy who played Karl in LOVE ACTUALLY. So here goes, full marks to the make-up guy.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Annoy me please!

Went to see the play "Annoyance" at Tata Hall on the 18th of March. Decision to drive all the way till churchgate from Four Bungalows was not as bad as I had thought it would be. One and half hours of drive and a hundred rupee fine for "lane-cutting" (frankly, I had no idea such thing existed) got me to Tata Hall.
The play started at 7 but some people kept coming in till around 7.15. Believe me, that way I really like the discipline at Prithvi. The doors are closed well 10 minutes before the play starts. But here, even during the play, people were going out to recieve their phone calls.
Anyways, coming to the play. Well, I loved it. I laughed my heart out. Jagdish Rajpurohitand Nazneen Madan were amazing. Vivek Tandon sounded too british for the play.
Jagdish plays an annoying person who is believed to have developed ANNOYANCE as an art form. Nazneen and Vivek played a shrink couple who are at the recieving end. The first act involved Jagdish torturing Nazneen with his annoying antics. The second act showed Vivek losing his cool because of Jagdish while the third act was about Nazneen and Vivek getting even with Jagdish.
For me, the first act was the best. The character was being introduced and all the antics were fresh. The best part was though I was laughing at the shrink getting annoyed, I was also feeling sorry for her. The second act bordered at being repetitive and Vivek's performance bordered at going overboard. The third act was a relief again. When the two shrinks celebrate their victory, you tend to wonder whether the annoyance has been cured???
Before treatment, you'd have asked the character:
Are you really this disgusting, or you do this to annoy me?
After the treatment, you'd end up asking:
Are you really this stupid, or you do this to annoy me?