Friday, December 25, 2009


Well, I seem to be blogging only about movie reviews, so much so that the title of the post will soon become redundant and I will not have to find new ways of saying "Here is a post about the movies I have watched" because every other post will be just that.

But I do have an excuse, for this non-imaginative post this time, which is:

I have been on a plane(s) flying over 32000 kms this month (Four 10 hour flights in 6 weekends), which means all I have done is

1. Get on the plane
2. Watch movies
3. Get off the plane
4. Go to work
5. Get on the plane
6. Watch movies
7. Get off the plane

This above sequence repeated twice :(

Anyway enough of that. Here are the movies.

Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas

This movie holds the record for being the one and only Johnny Depp movie that I have disliked. Enough said.

The Informers

I know you have never heard of this one, and its a good thing if that is so. If you want to change that look up this movie here
I had no clue what this movie was about when I began to watch it, and after I was done watching it, I still have no clue.
It seems to be about this bunch of people from LA who sleep around with each other and one of them gets aids. That's it. movie over.


Hot Fuzz

This was brilliant. Simon Pegg does a super job. The humour is awesome and I loved this movie. A breath of fresh air after watching a string of bad movies.

Naked Kitchen

(don't worry even I can't read Korean)

I was in a mood to experiment and switched to the World Movies section and stumbled upon this Korean movie. This is movie about a chef, his wife and a young chap who comes along to help the chef set-up his restaurant which ends up in a love triangle.
Though the movie started off quite nicely, it ended up in a tangled mess which was sad to see. So much scope and so little done.

Running Turtle

Another Korean movie, this one I absolutely loved.

A super plot: A cop who does not earn much, is cheated out of his illegally earned money by a criminal on the run. Time for vendetta, only the criminal is more than a match for our cop and outwits him most times. Cop loses his job and now its personal. He has to catch the criminal and get back his lost job and face.

This movie is 2 parts comedy, 1 part action, 1 part thriller and highly recommended!

500 days of summer

"This is not a love story, this is a story about love" proclaims the tagline, and so it is.

This movie follows the love and the life of the Tom and Summer, 500 days of it, in no chronological order.

It is a good watch, but it did not wow me.


Another romantic movie, this one I liked a lot for some reason. The story line follows a young man who seems strange at first in the way he behaves with the lovely new girl in his apartment complex who seems to be very interested in him. But this is soon explained. The guy has Asperger's Syndrome.

But don't worry, this is not a movie about the condition, its a sweet simple movie about love and loss.

Watch it.

District 9

Let me confess, I am not a big fan of science fiction (as you may have guessed from my post about StarTrek). This movie however, is something else. It shatters all my notions about sci-fi movies by being so different.
Yes there is a space ship and yes aliens have landed on Earth. But hold on. America is nowhere mentioned, the crash landing is in Johannesburg, and the aliens the lives of inter-galactic refugees.

There is racism (a reference to the Apartheid) and though they have been living here for years in slum-like conditions and they are about to be evicted to the outskirts, away from humans to live like outcasts.
The man who is responsible for evicting them, soon starts mutating into one of them in a freak accident and soon starts to see things from their point of view (literally).

This is a movie where the aliens are the protagonists and the humans the evil antagonists. You root for the aliens to win.

must must must must watch!

50 dead men walking

Super movie about the IRA and conflict in Ireland, based on a true story of a double agent who infiltrated the IRA and helped save 50 lives (hence the title), only to lose his.

Nicely made.

Aliens in the attic

A movie for children about an Alien invasion by pint sized aliens wrecking havoc in the attic of a holiday home.

The Great Buck Howard

John Malkovich is the Great Buck Howard, Toms Hanks' son, yes his SON. plays the law school grad who would rather be a Magicians assistant.

This is a bitter sweet story about a Magician who is past his "Great" days and is left travelling the country to perform in lesser known towns, but is still hoping to make a comeback.

Quite an enjoyable movie but a little bit depressing.

City Island

This is supposedly a comedy about a family living in 'city island'. But this movie is so warped that I think its a tragedy that it is referred to as a comedy.

I have no clue what Andy Garcia was doing in this disaster.

State of play

A journalist (Russel Crowe) finds his friend (A successful US Senator, played by Ben Affleck) implicated in a scandal, the so called suicide of his aide who was also his lover.

But things are not what they seem like and Crowe and rookie journalist (Rachel McAdams) begin to investigate the web of lies and deceit that lies behind the death of the Congress mans mistress.

A decent thriller, that I enjoyed watching

Revolutionary Road

Leonardo Dicaprio and Kate Winslet star in this pathetic excuse for a movie. This one is real bad.

The only thing I found interestig was, how perfectly the melancholy of living in the US is depicted here. Brrr reminds me of the 9 weeks that I had to live in USA.

Saturday, November 07, 2009

Project 'Whal-e' :P

One more door to be painted, this time on the inside of the bathroom door

Phase1: Decide how we want the door to look...

It's the bathroom, hence one should have something that goes with the mood, and what better than a whale frolicking in the bathtub ? :P

So, we have penciled in the Whale (Whal-E) and its bath-tub equipped with a bar of soap :)

Phase2: The paint job

Colouring this in should be simpler than the 'peeping girl' drawing on the outside of the door, I mean how multi-coloured can a whale get eh?

So its blue for the whale and white for the bathtub and maybe a bit of pink for the soap

We have started off and here is the first shot (we are letting the paint dry before continuing on)

Watch this space for updates :)

Sunday, November 01, 2009

More movies :)

Well I have watched loads of movies between my last big review and now. I shall try and recall them all, but am sure to miss quite a few. Here goes


Well easily one of the best animation movies in a looooong time :)

we watched this on a whim, when late into the evening, someone said hey lets go watch a movie and given a choice between 'Wanted' and 'Up' I chose to buy tickets for UP.

Brilliantly made, with a story line that is touching and funny at the same time.


Inglourious Basterds

Well, I loved a couple of characters (The brilliant Christoph Waltz as Col. Hans Landa) and loads of awesome scenes that only Tarantino can churn up, but the shoddy editing and some very very bad casting decisions (read the extremely idiotic Eli Roth as 'Bear Jew' and Diane Kruger as some actress) made this movie an average experience for me.


A lovely Lebanese movie that will be enjoyed more by the fairer sex since they can relate to it better, I could go on to call it a Lebanese chick-flick, and am not ashamed to admit that I quite liked it too.
A simple story line, wonderful direction and a good cast gives us an interesting insight into a slice of Lebanese life :)

note: The shapely lady in the poster is the the main character as well as the director of the movie


A good taut thriller written to be the exact opposite of 'Phonebooth' (The protagonist in Cellular has to keep running to save an abducted family who is in serious danger of getting wiped out.)

Well made. A good movie to watch on a lazy Saturday afternoon.

The International

Clive Owens and Naomi Watts star in this 'thriller' of err international proportions. Except for one good gun fight sequence, this movie - about a bank that is buying huge amounts of Chinese made weapons to supply them to encourage conflict in third world countries so that their debt increases - is boring.
Either that or banks dealing with weapons don't interest me.
If people tell you that this is a good movie, I can assure you that more times than not they just want to show-off that their understanding of international finance and politics is what made the movie interesting to them. But let me tell you that this is a BORING movie, avoid it, unless of course you have had too much excitement in your life and are looking for some boredom.

Bore yaaaawn boooore. I am sure by now you get the point.

The boat that rocked

From the makers of 'Four wedding and a funeral', 'Notting Hill' and 'Love Actually' (all movies that I loved!) comes 'The boat that rocked'.

The year is 1966, BBC plays only 45 minutes of music in a day. Rock n roll is considered to be a bad influence and obviously is craved for by the majority of the British population.
So here come the Pirate radio stations that broadcast music 24 hours a day 365 days a year from ships stationed in the North Sea!

This story - based on a string of real life events - is about one such radio station(headed by the awesome Bill Nighy) airing banned music from aboard 'Radio Rock', and its DJ's. It is also a coming of age story of a young chap who is sent by his mother to mend his ways (or so he thinks) to the worst place one can be to mend their ways - Radio Rock!

This is a movie about music, purely about music and a little bit of love and a little bit of friendship.

Quite nicely made, I liked it, but I shall not recommend it to you unless you loooove music and a little bit of experimental movie making :)

The Mummy - Tomb of the Dragon Emperor

I think next the makers will come up with 'The Mummy - Tomb of the Drag queen' or 'The Mummy - how to make your girlfriend a mummy' ahem, anyway here is the review...

After a superbly made 'The Mummy', which started off the whole series, it is sad to see this franchise going down so quickly and so badly.

This pathetically made excuse for a movie was watched by me due to lack of anything better to watch on tv.

Prof. Rick Donnel's son, Alex is now a grown up lad, in fact he is now older than his dad or at least looks like it, has a girlfriend who is immortal and be-friends a group of Yeti's.

No kidding! There is one scene where surrounded by the evil villain's soldiers, she runs up a mountain side and calls 'yeti yeti' and lo behold they come running to beat the soldiers up!

Jet Li is the Chinese mummy/emperor who has little or nothing to do, except get his ass kicked when Brendon Fraser tells him 'Enough of your magic and tricks, fight like a man!'

Pathetic and disgusting.

Six Shooter

I have been a huuuge fan of Martin Mcdonagh ever since I watched the awesome 'In Bruges'.

This 27 minute short film is typical Martin Mcdonagh.

This dark dark comedy (if you can call it that) is about a train ride that has a group of passengers who have all had a death in the family.

There is Brendon Gleeson who has had his wife die that very morning, there is this couple whose baby had a cot death the previous day and then there is this weird and almost psychopathic young guy who cannot stop talking, who has his mother who died the previous day!

Apart from anecdotes about exploding cows, ugly babies and shouting at sheep this movie showcases how different people deal with death.

Well made but only for those of you who appreciate dark humour (I obviously liked it :P).

Saturday, October 24, 2009


Well, nothing's changed. Well one thing has ! I have got crazier.

Here is some crazy stuff done more recently.

1. Gate crashed a wedding, so that we could all go to the loo. Ended up taking some pictures with the guests :D

2. Fainted at the dentist's clinic, when she told me what exactly she was going to do to my poor tooth.

3. Watched 'Main aur Mrs Khanna'.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Gangtok ahoy

Here is a low down on our Sikkim trip!

To get to Sikkim the first thing you need to do is get to either New Jaipalguri (NJP) or Baghdogra, since this is the nearest rail and airport to Sikkim

The quickest and the most expensive way - Bangalore to Kolkata to Bagdoghra by flight and Bagdoghra to Gangtok by Helicopter.

How we got there: Bangalore to Kolkata by flight 2.5 hrs, Kolkata to NJP by Darjeeling Express 8 hrs.

Having reached NJP quite early in the morning, we took a shared taxi ride to Baghdogra which is about 10-12kms away, our plan was to take the helicopter to Gangtok (2200 rs per person, flying time 40 mins), but at the airport we soon realised that the 5 seater helicopter was already booked.

So we had to hire a taxi to take us to Gangtok. 3 hour ride.

Things to be aware of when travelling to Sikkim

1. Make sure you have a hotel pre-booked (or at least expecting you)

A quick search on the net will tell you that Sonam Delek is the hotel with the best view in Gangtok, and that is absolutely correct, priced at 2200 per night the deluxe rooms are comfortable, clean and have a loveliest of views from the balcony. We stayed here

2. Make sure you have at least 5 days in Sikkim

Traveling around Sikkim is tiring, because the roads are all ghat roads, hence even small distances like 120kms take about 5-6 hrs of travel. Make sure you have sufficient rest before and after each excursion out of Gangtok.

3. If you suffer from motion sickness carry the necessary medicine along

I suffer from motion sickness, so we did carry along my medicine, but surprisingly despite all the travel on topsy-turvy roads I did not fall ill. whew!

4. Carry a Photo ID and passport size pictures

This is necessary to get a permit when going to places close to the Chinese border eg. Yumthang, Zero Point, Nathula Pass

5. Get acclimatised to the altitude before traveling further

Stay in Gangtok for a day at least, make sure you get used to the altitude and the thinner air.

6. Visit the tourist information centre

Its on M.G. Marg the main market area in Gangtok, they will not help you book travel, but they will definitely help you plan your travel.

What we did ?

1. Gangtok sight-seeing

The first day we spent in and around Gangtok. Hired a taxi (1800rs), to take us around. The popular trip is what is called a 10point tour, but we thought it a waste of time, so we picked and chose what we wanted to see. Rumtek Monastery, Limdung Monasatery, A couple of water falls and the very impressive views from Ganesh Tok and Hanuman Tok !

2. Yumthang Valley & Zero Point

Yumthang is an overnight stay kind of trip . Hire a taxi, leave early in the morning, the drive itself takes 6 hours but on the way there are stops at all the super waterfalls and for lunch!

Reach a lovely village called Lachung by dusk, overnight stay and the next morning head out to Yumthang, for a little more money (1600rs in our case) the driver will take you to zero point which is roads end! :) and not to be missed!

Zero Point

Yumthang valley's claim to fame is that it is covered in flowers in spring, but when we went it was just a beautiful view.

Yumthang Valley

You will reach Gangtok by 7pm.

note: Book this trip as soon as you reach Gangtok, with a travel agent.

3. Nathula Pass, Tsongo Lake, Baba Harbhajan Mandir

This is a nice day trip. nathula takes about 3 hrs from Gangtok, though it is just 50 kms away. The best point about Nathula is that you get to meet (see), the Chinese soldiers, who are a barb wire away. You can see them posing for snaps with some tourists, or having a word with our Indian soldiers.

en-route to Nathula

An Indian and a Chinese soldier at the border

Baba Harbhajan Mandir is the next stop, this is a nice especially because of the myth and the legend surrounding the young sikh soldier in whose memory the temple is built. Read more about him here

Harbhajan Mandir

On the way down is Tsongo lake, this 1 kilometre wide lake completely freezes over in the winter, but was a pretty sight when we visited it. If you so wish you can get an overpriced yak ride around the lake.

Tsongo Lake

note: Book this trip as soon as you reach Gangtok, with a travel agent.

Overall, this trip proved to be an expensive but nevertheless a very memorable one! We brought away, some lovely pictures, souveneirs and some very special memories of the mountains:)

Friday, October 09, 2009

10 things I learnt from 'Inglourious Basterds'

#1 - Speling.

#2 - If you are shot in the leg, you can still attend a movie premier, the very next day! oh remember to limp a little.

#3 - The much feared Nazi killer, the 'Bear Jew' looks more like a high school bully and has the acting talents of a wooden plank.

#4 - If you are a world renowned director, you can afford to do a super bad job of editing and nobody will notice

#5 - Hitler was really a comedian who provided some good laughs

#6 - If you are planning to take off your uniform, then Brad Pitt will tattoo your forehead

#7 - Chistopher Waltz (aka Col. Hans Landa) ROCKS!

#8 - The father of a new born baby always has a sub-machine gun handy, just in case.

#9 - Germans looooove '20 questions'

#10 - A few great individual scenes stiched badly together do not make a good movie, no matter what everybody thinks.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Review - 9

Right, so I had no clue what I was being dragged to, but I tagged along to watch 9.

Firstly, the animation is brilliant! But what is the movie about?

Without giving too much away: This is a movie set in a post apocalyptic world. The Machines have risen and mankind to the last human apparently been wiped out, but hope survives!

How you may ask, well hope survives in the form of 9 'sack' things, that have feelings and can walk, talk, dance and fight.

Then there is this round object where the latest of sack people inserts into a machine and wakes it up and all hell breaks loose.
They tighten things up and the movie ends.

So this is a thriller, that is definitely not for kids, but then it is not aimed at the adults completely either. The entire movie has a melancholy atmosphere and ends in a weird way, which is at least consistent with the feel of the whole movie. So well.

I am not waiting for 10, 11 or 12.

Tuesday, September 01, 2009

The Travel Update :)

Here is the list and how I fared against it!

(18th and 19th July) - Pondicherry

Status: Done!
Highlight: Hiring a fishing boat to take us out into the sea

(25th and 26th July) - London

Status: Done!

Highlight: Having a bumbling idiot sitting next to me. First he dropped a heavy bag, as he was trying to place it in the overhead compartment that almost fell on my head, second he elbowed me as he was trying to open a packet of peanuts and last he dropped the contents of an entire glass of Rum and Coke! over me.

(31st July) - Back to Bangalore

Status: Done!

Highlight: Alvin and the Chipmunks on the flight.

Weekend of 8th Aug - Calcutta!

Status: Done!

Highlight: Shopping for the most beautiful sarees ever! and Road side food :D

Weekend of 15th August - Definite trip with friends - place not planned

Status: Not Done :(

Highlight: Getting a much needed breather from weekend travel

Weekend of 23rd August - Sawantwadi, native place for Ganpati festival :)

Status: Done!

Highlight: Ganpati !! :D

Weekend of 30th August - Goa !

Status: Done!

Highlight: Performing the play "Chronicles of the Dark Nightie" and the "TW alphabet song"

Friday, July 31, 2009

London Walk

On my previous visits to this city, I have either been staying very close to the workplace or too far off, in the former case, it normally turns out to be a 2-5 min walk and in the latter there is no alternative but to take a tube ride to office. This time around however, I am staying about 3 kms away from office :) This means a perfect distance for a lovely walk to and from office!

When I got in all jet lagged on Sunday evening, I asked the chap at the reception how far it was to the place where my office was located, "its a 20-25 minute walk sir!" he said. I made a quick mental calculation, this guy says 25minutes that means at my walking pace I should be in office in 10-15 minutes, or so I thought.

Turns out, back in Bangalore I may be quicker than most when it comes to walking, but here I am just about average speed. Everybody is rushing along at a very brisk pace, which is extremely refreshing to see. :)

Walking quickly or not, the walk still gives me more than enough time to take in the sights and sounds of good old London.

The route I take on the walk itself is quite special.

(view enroute my walk)

I start from my service apartments (Bermondsey Street in East London), walk through a park that has tennis courts on my way to the Tower Bridge road. Once on Tower Bridge Road, its a walk straight past the very modern looking Mayor's office on the banks of Thames, over Tower Bridge itself, all the way across the Thames.
The river itself is a joy to see despite its brown muddy looking waters, there is always the large group of tourists taking pictures and pointing out to HMS Belfast (the WW || battleship that is moored on the Thames, now a floating museum) to one another.

On crossing the Tower Bridge one comes right at the popular and infamous Tower of London (Where the Kohinoor resides), from there on its a walk towards a more modern tower, namely the Gherkin - London's phallic symbol.

A 5 minute walk from the Tower of London is my workplace. It takes me about 25 minutes to walk the distance, just like the man at the reception told me :)

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

On the tube

London is super cosmopolitan, made more apparentto me by my tube ride yesterday to Oxford Street (a very popular shopping area, much like the Brigade and M.G. Road back in B'lore :) ) and back.

The guy sitting across me was reading a novel in Chinese, I guessed so b'cos it had a picture of Mao on the cover, the guy sitting to my right was reading a book in a language I could not begin to guess; I tried peeping in and reading it, thought it could have been German, but it may have been in Flemish for all I know.
A couple of girls standing by the doorway were definitely Sri-lankan. There was an Italian looking guy on one of the seats, there was an Ethiopian chap as well. All in all I could not find a single Englishman in the crowded coach!

Until a father and son walked in arguing about probability, "If you knew there was a low probability of getting caught, but the severity of punishment if caught is harsh, would you still commit the crime" argued the father... the son continued arguing for or against the topic, but i paid no further atttention. These guys were definitely British.

All in all, my almost voyeuristic trip proved to me just how cosmopolitan this place is!

Of course there is a lesson in there somewhere and that lesson is: I should take something to read on the tube next time, lest I make a habit of peeping into other people's books or eavesdropping on random conversations :)

Friday, July 24, 2009

Loads of travel coming up!

Here is a list

Last weekend (18th and 19th July) - Pondicherry

This weekend (25th and 26th July) - London

Next weekend (31st July) - Back to Bangalore

Weekend of 8th Aug - Calcutta!

Weekend of 15th August - Definite trip with friends - place not planned

Weekend of 23rd August - Sawantwadi, native place for Ganpati festival :)

Weekend of 30th August - Goa !

Whew!... How does that sound for travel?

Sunday, June 28, 2009

X-men Origins -Wolverine

Right, so due to public demand , here is my review of the latest in X-men :)

The story-line is as follows:

Boy realises that he has a problem of err bones growing from the vicinity of his knuckles, when he kills the man who shot his dad. But wait, the man he kills is his real dad, and his mom hates him for it (I think b'cos she did not get to kiss her lover goodbye before he got killed, but we shall never know).

IMHO, this kind of confusing trauma should be enough to turn a normal boy into a mutant.

So boy and his new found elder brother run away. Of course his elder brother is also a dude who has this issue of nails growing instantly, and he can leap around like a Labrador after chewy soft toy.

Now boy and elder brother cannot grow old and have the tendency to heal quickly, but they do grow up to become Hugh Jackman and Liev Schrieber, but mysteriously stop aging after that.

They fight in all wars possible, become part of a rouge mutant mercenary group led by Colonel Stryker.

Then Wolverine, as the boy is now called, gets his bones metal plated and gets to run around naked, before getting his hands on a jacket and a bike. Then he zooms around like nobody's business, and fights some crazy mutant and his brother who has turned evil towards the end of the movie.

Ok story over.

It is sad to see that after movies like Batman Begins, The Dark Knight and Iron Man. Hollywood still writes scripts like StarTrek and Wolverine.

So much scope for characterization (especially with a complex superhero like Wolverine), and all wasted away.

I shall definitely rate Wolverine higher (rated 6/10) than StarTrek(1/10).

Anyway, despite this movie, Wolverine does remain one of favourite superheroes :D

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Trek - Mulayangiri

Mulayangiri is supposedly the tallest peak between the Western Ghats and the Himalayas, it is also the tallest peak in Karnataka. The trek up to the summit begins at a place called "Sarpadari" that is 15kms away from Chikmagalur (the famous coffee plantation town of Karnataka).

We started off on Friday night around 11ish and reached Chikmagalur at some 5am on Saturday, since it was foggy and dark, we decided to freshen up and start the trek only once the day brightened a bit.

The journey from Chikmagalur to Sarpadari began refreshingly, with all of us sitting on the rooftop of the "Tempo Traveler". We reached the place and started the trek close to 6am on Saturday.

The trek in itself is very easy, there is a simple trail that you follow all the way up to the summit. It takes about 2 hours and you are right at the top!

However the weather was fantastic (at least for me), it was wet, foggy and lovely. We were basically trekking in the clouds.

The temple poojari at the summit provided us with breakfast of steaming hot lemon rice and hot black coffee which was one of the high-points of the trek :P.

And it was cold, brrrr. After a leisurely breakfast we headed down hill. The trek was prettier now and though I tried my best to make things interesting by moving away from the trail. The rest of the gang wanted to stick to the old beaten path (Which I thought was the safer but boring option).

I did have my way eventually though when I convinced 3 others who were with me to take an alternate route to the destination, this alternate route led us to a dead end of sorts with a vertical 14 foot drop to the tarmac :D

We eventually found another way down, that was relatively errr less vertical in nature, the other 3 had their great falls and I was fortunate to make a safe landing *grin*.

We decided not to continue on further, because the majority of us were wet and miserable.
Instead, we headed to Chikmagalur, where we freshened up and spent the night at a wonderful wonderful coffee estate right up in the hills :D.

The next morning (Sunday), we trekked through the coffee estate itself, followed by a few games of cricket at the most wonderful location ever!
By the foot of cloud covered hills, right in the middle of the coffee plantation.

On our way back to Bangalore, we stopped for a bit at the temple at Belur, which I personally think contains the best architecture and carving on the whole planet!

here are some pictures

Monday, June 15, 2009

10 things I learnt from watching StarTrek, the movie...

#1: You can do anything you want. anything, given that after you do it, you must say out aloud and in suprise "Wow, that's the first time I have done <enter what you have just acheived>"

eg: If you have just teleported a goat, a zebra and a water buffalo onto your spaceship from 3 different places at the same time, then all you need to do is say, "Wow, this is the first time I have teleported a goat, a zebra and a water buffalo onto my spaceship from 3 different places at the same time"

#2: Scotty can beam anybody/anything up to anywhere/anytime.

#3: If you want to name something, do not bother with scientific jargon, just keep it simple and call it what it looks like. eg: If it is red in colour and its is some kind of matter, then just go ahead and call it "Red Matter"

#4: It takes a drop of red matter to convert a planet into a black hole and destroy all its inhabitants, but make sure to use about 40 gallons of it in order to destroy an enemy space ship that is 1/900th the size of the planet. Oh! but wait, just 40 gallons will not destroy the ship, you may need to fire at the ship for about 10 minutes before the ship is destroyed.

#5: The Starship enterprise fleet has only a couple of senior members, the captain and someone named spock, everybody else is just a cadet. So if the Captain is indisposed the cadets can play musical chairs to choose a captain. Make sure you practise.

#6: Lets see, the enemy ship though 50 times bigger that your ship will only contain about 5-6 crew members, so all you need to do is ask Scotty to beam you to the enemy ship (see point #2), and shoot up most of the people there. Make sure you leave a couple of them alive in order to have a more fitting climax involving gallons of red matter and a black hole.

oh before I forget, your relatively smaller ship will have, around 20 members just in the 10X20 feet control room. you ship will have hundreds of crew members.

#7: If you are named Kirk, you will be made captain in about 3 years after having a bar room brawl, you need not possess any skills other than having the ability to be in the right place at the right time and a thorough knowledge of musical chairs (refer to #5). Ability to "emotionally compromise" a colleague and cheat in your exams is an added advantage.

#8: Everyone speaks the same dialect of the same language (read. "English"), irrespective of what planet or or universe you come from.

#9: If you have pointy ears and a tendency to be "emotionally compromised", then you are most definitely from the planet Vulcan. You may have a mother who is an Earthling, this may mean that the Vulcan society looks down upon you and consider you weaker. however your mother will most definitely be one among the Vulcan Elders and not shunned as you are.

#10: If there is anything that has a higher gravitational pull than a Black Hole, then it is the latest "Star Trek" movie. This is because nothing SUCKS more than Star Trek.

Note: I have not even written about the more obvious things such as, how the villans are such wimps who do nothing but put a rhino beetle into the captain's mouth as a means of torture.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Movie review time...

Ok so here are some more movies that have been watched

P.S: I love you

Sugary/nostalgia evoking romance with Gerard Butler in the lead, the premise of the movie is interesting enough to make one continue watching it :)

Boy loves girl, boy dies, girl (who also happens to be boy's wife) cannot get over his death until she starts receiving letters and gifts from him, that he had written before he died and planned it such that she would receive them after his death. The letters help her get over him :)

I found it a decent watch

Madagascar 2 : Escape to Africa

Not as good as part 1, but I found King Julian hilarious again! :D especially the scene where he plays agony aunt to Melman the giraffe :)

The bicycle thief

Lovely Italian movie about a father who loses his only source of income - his bicycle, the entire movie follows father and son, try and seek out the bicycle thief. This movie is as good as they come! must watch.

Pride and prejudice

Decentish, Keira Knightley does a good job in this remake of a classic, pity then that there is no Colin Firth to play Mr. Darcy...

Boy in striped pyjamas

Take one ounce of Pan's labyrinth, tone it down a bit, mellow down the drama, set it up in Nazi Germany as opposed to Civil War torn South America and you have a boy all dressed up in striped pyjamas.

This tells a story of a boy, who happens to be the son of a Nazi officer who is assigned to manage a death camp, Auschwitz. The boy of course knows nothing about death camps, but hates moving away from all his friends in Berlin, to a lonely country side, this remains so until he meets a boy in striped pyajamas (the clothes given to the jews languishing in the death camp).

This chance meeting across barbed wires, soon blossoms into a friendship with tragic consequences.

Watch this movie for a comparison study made between the life of the son of a successful Nazi officer versus that of the son of a Jew.
Well made, but mind you this is no "Pan's Labyrinth" it is very similar yet very different.


How can you take Hugh Jackman and Ewan Mc Gregor and end up making a pathetic movie? Watch this one to find out...


A man accidentally kills an intruder in his house, and unfortunately ends up in jail for 3 years. This movie follows the protagonist in jail and how he is labeled a felon and ends up having to survive one of the most toughest sentences. Quite well made, a modern take on "Shawshank redemption" if I may dare say so.

Vicki Cristina Barcelona

oo la la! most beautiful are the women and most beautiful is Spain! Penelope Cruz excels in this movie, Javier Bardem is awesome! watch watch watch now!

Shadow of a doubt

This is Alfred Hitchcock's personal favourite :) I quite like it too. A typical American family has a visitor, the charasmatic uncle Charlie, and suddenly everyone is happy... but is Uncle Charlie really all that he seems to be?

Nicely made movie.

Irma La douce

This Romantic comedy features Jack Lemmon as the bumbling cop who is thrown out of his job and Shirley Maclain as "Lady of the night", Lemmon takes up residence with Shirley and falls in love, only to realise that her profession does not let him have her all to himself.

He hits on a plan to get her to be his, and hilarity ensues. A good classic!

Thursday, May 21, 2009

The rains are here...

Its been raining every other day, the heavenly summer evenings have given way to evening showers. Now this is wonderful if one is sitting indoors, gawking at the rain thundering against the windows. The traffic suddenly disappears and the rain brings down visibility to about 20 feet.

Rains do sometimes bring along unscheduled power cuts, but these can be turned to one's advantage, like on Sunday when the power failed followed by the generator, it was carrom time for the family, with each member holding a torch and planning out the shot's :P

But most painful are the roads, that always seem to be under repair right when the rains arrive, or it could be that they are constantly under "repair" all through the year but I notice them only during the rains.

But all said and done, I think I do like the rainy Bangalore, at least it adds more joy to life to be able to sit in the balcony sipping tea and eating hot bhajis :)

Saturday, May 16, 2009

It's been a while...

...since I last blogged, a lot has transpired since :)

The IPL has been dominating TRP ratings, viewed by one and all. The Fake IPL player has been providing juicy tidbits of the going ons behind the scene, the IPL trophy looks as ugly as ever, the commentary team collectively has got dumber ("what a beautiful IPL trophy this is...", "South Africans love the IPL, they have come in droves to watch the match...", "You've been left out of the playing eleven, how happy do you feel right now?"),the going has been decentish for the team I support (Royal Challengers Bangalore) and in related news, the zoozoos have finally attacked!

On the personal front, I have had yet another trip to Mahabalipuram with wifey and a couple of friends (and our faithful Karaoke machine) which went well (especially the karaoke and the monopoly part). The door painting project was completed quite a while ago, here is a picture of how it looks now *grin*.

Also, my batting form has returned (with an offside six!) and the bowling form is doing well :D. We have finished watching all 4 seasons of "How I met your mother" (I watch it just for Neil Patrick Harris' "Barney Stinson"). I have finished reading the wonderful wonderful "Ode to Kirihito" by Osamu Tezuka and am currently reading "The man who kept secrets" (Peter Lawford's Biography) and "Road to dusty death" by Alistair Maclean.

I am hoping to blog more frequently and am hoping that it will be "Legen - wait for it - dary" !

Friday, April 10, 2009

The Top 5 Graphic novels/comics I have ever read

Here is a list of my all time favourite graphic novels in the order of Best First :)

Batman: year one
- Frank Miller

I know, there are hundreds of Batman comics out there, but trust me, if you want to get to the crux of Batman, then this is the book you need to read!
This flawless piece of art was the inspiration for 'Batman Begins', this book is as much about Commissioner Gordon as it is about Bruce Wayne's foray into the night dressed up as a bat! The art and the colouring is of the classic style of comics, very unlike the graphic complex comics that we see today, the artwork is simple yet compelling, the story is wonderful and this one is a must read!

Buddha - Osamu Tezuka

Osamu Tezuka is definitely the GOD of comics/manga/ everything.
This was his last epic, and what an epic this is :) As the name suggests the set of 8 books, tell us the story of Buddha, from his birth to his Moksha. Tezuka introduces some ficitonal characters to add comic relief and move the story along.
This piece of work narrowly misses being my most favourite, and that because I LOVE Batman and am biased :)

This book intorduced me to Tezuka and his art and since then I have been hooked!

Sandman - Neil Gaiman

I am a big fan of Neil Gaiman's writing, American Gods, Neverwhere etc but Sandman his graphic novel about the Lord of dreams a.k.a Morpheus is unparralled.
There has been no protagonist darker that the lord of dreams, the Sandman pack consisting of over 200 books is a long read, but each subset can be read on its own, though it interwines with the others. I have the entire collection in .cbr format, and its a great read!

I wonder how Gaiman could dream up of something like this :P

Sin City - Frank Miller

Unconventional artwork(to my untrained eye), fast paced story telling, with the central theme being vengeance, it cannot get better. Add Frank Miller to the equation and you get a dynamite of a Graphic novel.

Ode to Kirihito - Osamu Tezuka

This is an 800 odd page epic, I am reading it as I compose this post. It cost around 1200 bucks and I was in two minds, I had never heard a lot of it before, and did not know if this was worth the investment. I however knew that this was an Osamu Tezuka book and my mind was made up. Amu and I spent hours in Landmark before deciding to buy this though :)

It has been a great buy, Tezuka does not dissapoint in this medical thriller about a disease that turns its victims into dog like beings before taking their lives, and how Kirihito, a young doctor decides to get to the bottom of the cause for the disease only to succumb to it while doing his research in a remote eerie village that seems to be the source of the disease.

He does however manage to figure out what causes the disease, but a plot by some authorities and a set of unfortunate circumstances ensures that he travels far and wide, getting kidnapped to be displayed in a freak show, getting beaten up mercilessly by villagers, hunted by his foes and aided by some strange allies he makes in his journey.

I am reading it and I am loving it. Tezuka is GOD :)

Other books that are wonderful:

300 - Frank Miller
Made popular by the movie, but a classic book in itself!

KnightFall/Broken Bat
Bane breaks Batman's back (Check out the alliteration :P)

Fables- Bill
Read a post regarding this I made 4 years ago :)


Oh yes, Lucifer the fallen one makes an awesome hero, a worthy protagonist, as he embarks on a set of adventures with oodles of style and charisma.

Books that I have not yet read but have the potential to be good:

- Bone by Jeff Smith
- Y, the Last man

Book(s) that I have read but find over rated!

- Watchmen by Alan Moore (Though Rorsharch is one of my favorite characters)

Thursday, April 02, 2009

Hmmm seems like my blog just reviews movies....siggggh


Now I consider the Alan Moore's cult classic graphic novel an effort that is just above average, except for the Rorschach character who is exceptional, I would state the same about the movie. Watch it for Rorschach if nothing else, but beware, this one is a 3 hour long movie that takes some watching, it stays quite loyal to the original graphic novel, but then by now, Zack Snyder must be pretty used to taking comic books and making them into movies :)
You won't recognise even a single actor, unless you are a huuuge movie buff, but that one must say is one of the positives from this movie.

'Who watches the Watchmen' should one ask? heh.

The Wrestler

A wonderfully made movie, one you would enjoy if you like drama. I am not a huge fan of Mickey Rourke, but like in 'Angel Heart' before, he impresses again here as an aging professional wrestler who struggles with the 'real' life outside the ring.
Unfortunately, another performance by Marisa Tomei, where she has to strip (professionally for this character she plays), I bemoan the loss of a great actress such as her.

The Reader

Kate Winslet and Ralph Fiennes do a great job in this movie, I quite enjoyed it and thought it had parts that impressed and some that were average. But watchable nevertheless.
p.s: I read Chekov's "Lady with the dog" but was not impressed.

Lives of Others

Another movie depcting life in Germany, East Germany of the 1980's this time and this one is a German movie.
We follow the lives of 3 characters, A Dramatist, his girlfriend who is an actress and a Secret Service surveillance officer who is given the job spying on them. Mostly we get to know the characters from the point of view of the Secret Service officer and just like him we get drawn to their lives and the movie that is slow to begin with grips us suddenly, as we begin to relate to the principal characters, including the lonely SS officer who from being a staunch socialist soon starts to draw inspiration and changes, after following the lives of the very people he is spying on

A brilliant movie, one that I rate very highly.


Alfred Hitchcock present's Kim Novak and James Stewart in Vertigo!
Brilliantly made movie, a true classic. Must Watch!

An Englishman who went up a hill but came down a mountain

Hugh Grant plays a cartographer, who along with his senior visits a small Welsh village, to chart the height of a local hill. This is 1917, the World War is on and the quaint village and its people take offence to their mountain being called a hill!
They reckon it is over a 1000 feet high and must be called a mountain but the Catographer measures its height as being 986 feet, 14 feet short of a mountain.

Romance and hilarity ensue in this wonderful plot, as the villagers ensure that the hill becomes a mountain.

Nice movie!

Sunday, March 08, 2009


Armageddon- Decentish movie with all the expected thrills and chills

Zodiac - Average, thriller about a real life serial killer

The renaissance man - Hmm, Danny De Vito plays a English 'professor' trying to teach a bunch of dumb army cadets, not very impressive

Hannibal Rising - badly done prologue about Hannibal the Cannibal

Music and Lyrics - sweet and sugary romance, I like Hugh Grant so did not mind this a lot

Analyse This - BAD BAD BAD yuck puke

December Boys - A coming of age movie about 4 orphans who hope to get adopted one summer vacation. I quite liked this.

City of Angels - Nicholas Cage hams his way through an otherwise decent plot :)

Valkyrie - Loved this movie, despite watching it in a London Movie hall (Watching a movie in a theatre in London is one of the worst movie experiences one can have)

RockNRolla - Guy Ritchie, decent, not as good as his previous ones, but not the worst either.

How to lose friends and alienate people - This comedy could definitely have been better made.

Three to Tango - hmmm, not too nice.

Constant Gardner - Slow, but I really like Ralph Fiennes and Rachel Wiez so well I liked it quite a bit

Conspiracy Theory - Pathetic!

Big Lebowski - Overrated, emperor you are making a habit of roaming about naked

Ronin - Another overrated movie, this action thriller did NOT thrill me one bit.

Curious Case of Benjamin Button - See Post below

Road to Ladakh - Irrfan Khan and Koel Purie star in this short film about 'love', this 50 minute movie leaves a lot to be desired.

Meet the Fockers - As one would expect it to be.

To catch a thief - Cary Grant and the very beautiful Grace Kelly star in this Alfred Hitchcok classic! Fantastic!

Old Boy - Fantastic! Brilliant and a definite must watch if you like action and don't mind a bit of weirdness (Eating of live octopodes for example) in return for truck loads of style !
This was remade into 'Zinda' in Hindi, but the plot was defintiely changed a lot.

The Curious yaaaawn case of yaawn Benjamin Button

Well, I had heard so much about this movie, about how awesome this was and how its brilliance outshone the sun etc etc

Well Sorry Emperor, but you are err naked !

Well I found the movie bad in almost all the criteria by which I judge the movies I watch. This was like watching Forrest Gump in reverse, the plot had one idea, a guy lives his life backwards and that's it!

There was no development of character, there was absolutely no substance, it was almost as if the makers had bet on how good Brad Pitt looks riding a bike with the wind blowing in his face or how pretty the full moon looks!

When it comes to movies I have quite a bit of patience, but the last time I was so bored in a theatre was when I watched Salaam Namaste by mistake!

Cate Blanchett I hated, there was almost no romance between Brad Pitts character and Cate's character.

The lamest scene was where Benjamin describes how the heroine would have missed being hit by a car if even one thing had changed. Man!

The only good parts were the CGI, the costumes and to some extent the cinematography

I have this director marked, I am not going to waste anymore time of my life on his movies.

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

The enigma that is Nicholas Cage

On a long flight back home I happened to watch 'City of angels', A nice plot for a romantic movie :) but what struck me was the enigmatic Mr. Cage, now here is an actor who has movies of various genre under his belt, and yet has managed to get through them all with the same expression on his face.

Now that is enigmatic.
How Nicholas Cage can romance Meg Ryan (City of Angels), Run about on 'The Rock', sit around with a group of convicts (Con-air) , Try and ferret out a snuff film maker (8mm), hot-wire cars with Angelina Jolie (Gone in 60 seconds), Sell ammo (Lord of war) all with the same look on his face !

People may describe this expression as 'wooden' or 'stonefaced', but to me this more of a 'I-swallowed-a-stress-ball-this-morning-and-it-is-stuck' kind of expression

I know you think I am exaggerating, hell! When I started off this post I thought I would exaggerate a lot of stuff in this post, but after some rigourous research around Cage and his movies, I can assure you none of what is out here is an exaggeration.

Here is some proof:


Exhibit A: Cage in "Lord of war"

It is quite obvious that during the filming of this scene, cage has zonked out, and this very moment (where his character is supposed to be trying to sell arms and weapons of mass destruction), the expression on Cage's face seems to suggest he is thinking of whether he has fed his pet panda this morning.

Exhibit B: Con-Air

From his expression I do not know whether he is checking out a chick on the beach or whether he is trying to solve the problem of rounding up escapee convicts (well if you are still wondering, its supposed to be the latter)

Exhibit C: Leaving Las Vegas

While Elizabeth Shue seems to be quite happy 'Leaving Las Vegas', our pal has managed to get his brilliant expression on the movie poster!!

Exhibit D.1 and D.2: Gone in 60 seconds

We can see only half his face in both the captures, but given previous evidence I am quite sure that, front on, the expression on his face has not changed.
The first picture is where they are hotwiring a car and the second is an intense romantic moment between the protagonist and the leading lady, one would never have guessed.

Exhibit E: City of Angels

Our man has fallen in love with Meg Ryan, or at least that is what his expression in this scene is supposed to indicate, but it remains "I-swallowed-a-stress-ball-this-morning-and-it-is-stuck"

I rest my case

p.s: Despite all this I thought, he was pretty much at his best in 8mm and his worst in City of Angels and Ghost Rider

Sunday, March 01, 2009

Mission: Paint the door - Episode 1

Amu and I have decided to paint a door in our room, we mulled on this decision for a couple of weeks and yesterday got down to actually starting off on the project.

Phase1: Decide how we want the door to look...
The door is a long and narrow canvas, hence deciding what to paint on it was a little confusing. Should we draw a giraffe? A trapeze artist? or some colourful blotches and call it art (ala M.F. Hussain), we just could not decide, Hussain seemed to be the easiest way forward. :P

But finally in a moment of epiphany, we decided we wanted to have a door painted on our door with a little girl and her cat peeping from behind it. :D

Phase2: Some initial sketch work...

We started sketching the door at 11pm last night, and surprisingly it came out quite well :)
Got dad (who is a professional artisit), to look at it and he said it was quite nice :D

Yet to come: buying paints and starting the paint job...