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THE TERRIBLE STRANGERS

Anjaana …Anjaani  is a movie about two people , Ranbir Kapoor and Priyanka Chopra  and their endless attempts at killing themselves off. When they fail to succeed in these attempts , they get bored and decide to fall in love. Ofcourse, Priyanka does not realize it till the end -that she is in love -and needs a host of cinematic cliches thrown at her face , including a supportive ex-boyfriend , who of course , according to the prevalent rules of Cinema , takes it surprisingly well. There are also the ever present small coincidences , that remind her of Ranbir Kapoor . Then only does she realize the strength of her passion.  Ranbir Kapoor proposes in the end, needless to say , Priyanka agrees. Also , the scene is set in apparently freezing water, which somehow is supposed to be funny . I cant remember how,though.

Ever watched a movie , that starts out interesting and seems to have some potential? And then have you watched in dismay , as slowly the movie deteriorates to the point , where it is just a puddle of  shameless cliches from  many movies past? And also have you watched , two perfectly good looking and talented actors , who seem to occupy almost 95% of the screen time , wasted away? It is quite sad , I must say. And  if you want to witness it , go watch this movie. Because thats what this movie is , a waste – a waste of talent , and a waste of what perhaps could have been developed into an interesting story.    To make it worse , given the deterioration mentioned earlier , the movie comes off as pretentious.

Ranbir Kapoor is a ..well ..enterprenuer , in the film. It is not clear what he does , except that it has got something to do with the stock market. He is supposedly aggressive , too aggressive for his own good. He mouths stuff like “Higher share price means more profit” and “Us company ko khareed lete hain”.  Having established his business credentials thus , he proceeds to take a business loan from a bank. The stock market crashes , and he promptly decides to die. It is not exactly clear why , because , his other partners , do not seem to be doing the same thing. Anyways , he decides to jump off a bridge , and that is where he meets a much drunk Priyanka Chopra.  Apparently she also wants to die , andfor some inexplicable reason ,  she keeps distracting Ranbir , as he tries to jump off the bridge. They fail in the attempt , and land up at the hospital.

They , then escape from the hospital , go to Priyanka’s home , and try to die again. They , fail again, because , otherwise , it would have been a very short movie. That is when , they decide , that they would try again after 20 days , because , apparently all these failed attempts at suicide , warrant such a waiting period. Why could not it be interpreted as a sign to live instead of trying suicide in another 20 days , one cannot understand. Directors ofcourse , have poetic license , and not questioning , their conclusion , lets move on. And , ofcourse , they decide to spend these 20 days together . For a while , we are not clear why Priyanka wanted to die in the first place. Just when , you are about to decide , that she is generally of a suicidal tendency , her story is told. By that time , you dont really care. Anyways, Ranbir first falls in love with Priyanka. Priyanka , ofcourse being a girl , retains the prerogative to be confused about her feelings. She thinks she is still in love with the jerk of an ex boyfriend , when she is with Ranbir. And when with the ex -bf , she thinks she is in love with Ranbir. And luckily for her , both are  so  understanding, that one cannot help suspect if they really like her.  And ,then finally on the same bridge , they met first , they ofcourse also decide to get married. Then , the movie ends with the cliched’ joke that marriage is as good as suicide.

Frankly , I thought the movie started off on an interesting note. And I thought , that perhaps , it would turn out even more interesting. While it was quite predictable , that these two would fall in love , may be they could have without using so many cliches. At one point in time , you feel that the director is bored with the movie. Why else , does he keep throwing all the cinematic cliches , that were ever in existence at us? And so what you get as an end product , is a terrible mish mash of , pretentious , cliched , head ache inducing cinema, which seems to have too many songs.

Both Priyanka and Ranbir , have acted quite well in the movie. Both of them seem to have a certain ease to their acting , a sort of fluidity , and would have been a treat to watch , if the story had been better told. Ranbir particularly , is a find . He has shown  that he can act and the spark shown in Rocket Singh , continues. And in comparision , with the very wooden Imran Khan , he scores any day ,in the acting department. This man has potential , clearly ,for much bigger things. Priyanka , has also done well . Both of them also seem to be easy and relaxed around each other. I wouldnt call it chemistry , but yeah , they looked good together. Unfortunately , the characters are not very well developed. And it is surprising , if one considers the fact that , there are hardly any other roles , with a combined screen time more than 5 minutes . So much time on the screen , and yet , the character development ,somehow doesnt seem quite well.

There are also too many songs in the movie. As I said , the director was bored and clueless , towards the end , and he decided to fill the movie with cliches and songs.

So , thats the sad tale of the terrible strangers . Watch it if you have nothing else to do. Avoid it , if you can. I give it a 1.5 out of 5 .

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YENNA RASCALAA ..MIND ITTT…

Every once in a long long while , along come some unforgettable cultural icons. They stretch the limits of what we think is possible , change our perspective towards life in particular and reality in general , overwhelm us and leave us drained and panting with their awesomeness. You are left with no choice , but to surrender all your senses to the phenomenon that is the icon , suspend all thought , and in general allow yourself to be overpowered by the experience. Mithun Chakaraborthy in Gunda is one such icon. Rajnikanth yet another. Us South Indians , ofcourse , will argue that , Rajnikanth is in a totally different league altogether and that , the two cannot really be compared or even that their names cannot be uttered in the same breath. I would not want to take this argument further , because it is said that , in a typcial room there are around 3056 items , using which Rajnikanth can kill you , including the room itself , and frankly am a little scared and dont want to die. And I can already hear Mithun Chakraborthy yelling at me  and that too scares me. So suffice to say that , I have been overwhelmed by both these icons , other arguments notwithstanding.

But this post is not about these icons. The biggest mistake Rahul Dravid made , was to play in the same period as Sachin Tendulkar did. Sometimes , a bigger icon can outshine the smaller ones . If these said smaller icons , were born in another period , then they would have been big icons in their own right. So this post ,is dedicated to bring these smaller icons to light. Specifically , to bring any such deeds as they might have done , which deserve jawdropping awe to light. And in watching some of these , if you catch yourself ,thinking -“Woww..even Rajni couldnt do that.” , dont panic. It is natural. Too long have icons like Rajnikanth occupied our collective imagination. So ladies and gentlemen , we present to you -“The Captain”.

Watch this one:-

Yes , that what I am talking about. Apart from the general rule that ,  heroes  should be  old and plump and  heroines young and plumper , there are certain  other ,more stringent rules , before we bestow the status of a cultural phenomenon on someone. They are:-

1) A general defiance for the laws of physics , because , well …fuck physics.

2) An ability to stretch , challenge , distort , change and demolish your perceptions of the fabric that is reality , because , well ..fuck reality too.

Also observe , in the video that , The Captain , not only emerges unhurt , he also manages to hurt ,another man with the same bullet. And that is ofcourse another quality that we want in our Cultural Icons. Old fashioned , simple and sweet-efficiency. “Hey the bullet does not hurt me …so why waste it …lets kill that bastard  , standing there with it. I dont even need to move. I will just look at him . And the bullet will travel in the desired direction. ” Yes , bullets are afraid of the captain too. Ofcourse , if it is between the captain and Rajni , Rajni would anyday take precedence, but as I said , we are not talking about Rajni here.

So that brings us to the next  rule:-

3) If a bullet does not hurt you , make sure it hurts someone. Efficiency , is not only a desired but a necessary quality, because , well….fuck bullets.

Observe the confused , expression of the policeman in the end. That brings us to our next rule.

4) Mere mortals should not understand what you are upto , because , well….fuck mere mortals.

I am a South Indian , and specifically from the state of Andhra Pradesh . And for a long while , I had bemoaned the lack of such icons , from my state. At one point in time , I was afraid , I would die , without seeing the emergence of atleast one such icon , from my state. Not any more . Ladies and Gentlemen , presenting to you – Balakrishna .

Did you see that..did you see that.? Now let us see , how many of the rules , that we discussed earlier , did this deed of his satisfy.

1) Defiance for the laws of physics and fucking physics – check

2) Distortion of perceptions about reality – check

3) Efficiency – ofcourse check. He did not do any hard labor , to move that train , he just politely asked it to move back. Ofcourse , some might say that pointing your index finger , is not exactly polite , but then , well…fuck trains.

4) Mere mortals not understanding you – did you not see how flabbergasted Sonali Bendre was?

Also observe , that he is very devout. And God is on his side. Now some might say , this is cheating. I mean you cant invoke God and get stuff done , and be called a cultural icon. Well , allow me  to humbly submit that just because , The Captain was not seen to be praying in the bullet scene , does not mean that , he was not actually doing it. May be he was secretly. So I think Balakrishna deserves extra credit for his humility. So this brings us to the next rule.

5) Invoke God whenever you can – it helps , particularly when you need to push tonnes of metal out of the way.

I had in fact , for a long time suspected that , he was just pretending to invoke God . I mean I was pretty much sure , that he was God. And then , I watched this video , and realized , he has a long long way to go , before being called God.

God already walks this earth . Presenting the Captain again..

He meant to say , God not Narasimha.

And I am scared of even mentioning the checklist now.

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