Day 11: In Which I Finish My A to Z

The remaining part of my A to Z list 🙂

N-Naya Daur–A ground-breaking movie in more ways than one , and one that is still relevant after more than half a century.

O– Omkara by Vishal Bharadwaj is based on Shakespeare’s Othello and set in rural Western UP. If you don’t mind too much the cuss words that fly thick and fast, you will like this. I did. Cast includes Saif Ali Khan, Ajay Devgan, Kareena Kapoor and Konkona Sen Sharma.

P–12, Park Street–This not very well-known movie by Aparna Sen is about a schizophrenic woman and the alternate world she is trapped in, while poignantly portraying the despair of her elder sister who has devoted her life to caring for her. Starring Shabana Azmi and Konkona Sen Sharma.

Another P–Provoked–This is an excellent film by Jugmohan Mundhra on the real-life story of Kiranjit Ahluwalia who kills her violent husband. Features Aishwarya Rai who puts her heart and soul into the role.

Q–I could only think of two Q movies–Qurbani and Qayamat Se Qayamat Tak. The former was insufferable. The latter, thankfully, was good eno0ugh to make it here 😉 QSQT was a realistic and (for want of a better word) dignified romance movie that came like a breath of fresh air in the trashy eighties.

R–Raincoat–Starring Aishwarya Rai and Ajay Devgan, this movie by Rituparno Ghosh is an adaptation of a short story by O Henry. Two former lovers happen to meet again and both are forced to have a moment of truth.

S- Sholay– The ultimate masala movie. Brilliant cast, excellent performances by one and all, super-tight editing so that not one second of it appears superfluous. And violence was mostly suggested, not shown–for a bandit movie, it was remarkable how little of gore there was on display.

T-Taare Zameen Par–But of course!  Beautiful, beautiful movie about the struggles of a dyslexic child and how he blooms in the care of a sensitive, sympathetic teacher. Aamir Khan plays the teacher, Darsheel Safari the child and Tisca Chopra the mother of the child. Great acting by everyone.

U–Umrao Jaan–The old Rekha starrer, I mean. It’s the story of the life of a Lucknow courtesan in the seventeenth century by the same name. Rekha in one of the best performances of her career.

V- Cannot think of a V movie! Edited to add–Actually there is a V movie that I liked very much–Vicky Donor! A very nice romantic movie with some comedy thrown in, it deals with the concept of sperm donation and how the society perceives it. Features newcomers Ayushmann Khurana and Yami Gautam.

W-Woh Saat Din–The story of the good Indian girl ultimately coming around to respect Indian culture and traditions. Didn’t care much for the plot but boy, what performances by Padmini Kolhapure and naseeuddin Shah!

X- Tell me if you can think of an X movie, good or bad!

Y- Yuva! Mani Ratnam’s direction and A R Rehman’s music are absolutely top-class, though the movie did not really do well commercially.

Z-Zubeida–This movie proved that even the most ordinary of actresses can deliver a powerful performance under a skilled director– as Karishma Kapoor did in this movie under Shyam Benegal’s direction. Wonderful period- movie with a haunting musical score that heightens the sense of impending doom. Lovely!

Done! Yay!

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5 Responses to Day 11: In Which I Finish My A to Z

  1. Glad to read your entire list.
    I have not seen many of those you listed.

    In NetFlix, they have quite a few Hindi films uploaded which can be streamed and watched at home using Apple TV, on my large sized TV screen.

    I saw quite a few Hindi movies that no one seems to have heard of in India and they were great films. One such was “Dharm”, another was “Outsourced.”

    Dharm stars Pankaj Kapur who plays the role of an orthodox Brahmin Priest in Varanasi and who by a strange set of circumstances, happens to adopt an apparently abandoned baby and raise it for a few years and then discovers the child is a muslim child who was lost in the riots and for whom the Parents had been frantically searching far and wide for many years. The Muslim parents finally locate the child and come to claim it after the child has been brought up for a few years as a Brahmin in Varanasi. The emotional tug of war between the two families and the child’s reactions are well brought out in this movie, when the Brahmin Priest is forced to part with the child as the Muslim parents had a legally tight case. The outrage and reactions in an orthodox Hindu community, when it was discovered that a Brahmin priest had been bringing up a Muslim child is also well brought out.

    “Outsourced” gives an insight to the inner workings of the Call centre industry in India managed by small set ups in small towns that stay touch using the telephone and internet. The lead role is played by an American Actor who comes to one such small town in India and helps set up the team here and trains them. All the other actors are Desis, and you would not have heard their names at all. The problems and complexities. the cultural shocks etc. are beautifully brought out.

    I also saw Antardwand which focuses on incidents of grooms being kidnapped in Bihar and the story of one such groom and his bride.

    Many of these movies are probably unknown or not well known in India as no distributor will want to touch them, fearing these would be commercial flops.
    But I enjoyed them much more than I did the Masaala films.
    I saw Vishwaroopam, Chennai Express and also Ram Lila at a theatre here in California
    Paying 12 dollars a ticket, I now regret the expense!
    Frankly, I think I have outgrown movies like these
    We spend just $8 per month for a subscription to Netflix with unlimited movies to watch!
    I was able to enjoy English Vinglish at the theatre,

    For the rest of my stay, I have forsworn visiting theatres and will be content to watch streamed movies at home.

    Be back tomorrow.

    • Dharm and Outsourced sound very interesting indeed. Will look for them at my neighbourhood DVD parlour.

      Vishwaroopam, I heard, had too much violence–and nothing ticks a movie off my list as quickly as any mention of excessive violence! Ram-Lila got terrible reviews across the board, so didn’t bother. I never intended to watch Chennai Rxpress either, but it proved to be such a big hit that curiosity got the better of me and I watched a part of it on TV–and actually even enjoyed it!

  2. chattywren says:

    I have not seen Naya Daur and Provoked and Park Street – they sound interesting. V – Vicky Donor? It was a good one.

  3. R's Mom says:

    Errr…and I have watched only Vicky Doner in this list 😦 Darn, I really need to start watching movies eh?

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