Visiting Parents.

In my extended family of siblings and cousins both maternal and paternal, I am one of the rare ones who lives with his offspring. Something that was unthinkable during my parents’s time and well into my adulthood as well. Both my parents stayed with their children during their retirement stage and died while resident with one of the children. Today, if I look at my immediate family, none of my nephews and nieces stay with parents and the parents one of whom is single, live separately.

While this is increasingly getting to be the norm here, there are constant messages on WhatsApp and facebook about the necessity for the grown up children to spend time with their parents. This is one such video showing an adult male going to visit his widowed mother. The language is Malayalam, spoken in our Southern state of Kerala. There are no subtitles but, the story line is easy to follow despite that. Pulls all the right strings! I regret that I am unable to give credit to the maker/s of the film as I am unable to find details.

Super Heroes Real Or Imagined.

Speaking strictly from the physical point of view, my fellow 2 on 1 Friday blogger Shackman, is fit to play a super hero any time and I, his side kick who can generate some humour to the fights with windmills that we are likely to encounter. Somewhat like Don Quixote and Sancho Panza. Shackman however may have a vastly different opinion and to see what he has to say about this topic which he has come up with, please visit his blog.

I grew up straddling two cultures, Indian and British and was in awe of many heroes of both. From the former, Hanuman, Ram, Krishna, Arjuna, Shiva from the vast array of our Gods, Shivaji, Kattabomman etc from our history, and from the latter, Tarzan, The Phantom etc. This fascination lasted till about my mid teens when these were replaced by Indian film heroes and characters from English fiction. Sivaji Ganesan, M G Ramachandran, Chandrababu from the former and The Saint, Mickey Spillane, Sherlock Holmes and Perry Mason from the latter.

Fast forward to my late teens and reality sunk in and it was Super Heroines that I got involved in! The list is too long but some notable ones, Maharani Gayatri Devi, Saroja Devi, Helen, Wahida Rahman and Nutan.

Then a real life heroine came into my life and lo and behold I myself became a hero of sorts in my chosen career. It is difficult to explain without sounding boastful but, it is in my retirement that I have learnt of the number of people who thought that I was a swashbuckling sales person ever ready to lead a team of aggressive salesmen into battle with competition and top management to gain market share and bonuses. That I was like that is now clear to me by the number of people who are in touch with me via the social networks and I often wish that I can simply quit those to get more time to read books rather than posts of WhatsApp and Facebook. Despite considerable pressure from some friends, I have not gone into other sites like Linkedin and Instagram.

So, having myself been a Super Hero of sorts and also having bagged a Super Heroine in real life, where is the scope for Super Heroes or Super Heroines in my world now? My son and daughter in love are both involved in heroic social work and it is heartening for me to see them perform heroic deeds from the sidelines understanding that it is their time in the sun and it is for me to cheer them on to greater achievements.

Review Badhai Ho!

Badhai Ho in Hindi means Congratulations.

You can read the story line in this Wikipedia link

I could recognise only Neena Gupta, an actress form my early movie going days and Ayushmaan Khurana who acted in my last review Andha Dhun. These two literally carry the entire movie on their histrionics but, in all fairness, all the others extend excellent support.

The story line, dialogues and direction are simply brilliant. The portrayal of an ordinary middle class family caught in an embarrassing situation is portrayed with elan and all the nuances of their daily lives very lucidly brought out.

The story is unusual but, highly probable and for that precise reason so moving.  I think that it deserves to be called a tragicomedy!

From all accounts, it is a box office hit without the help of songs, dance and/or fight scenes. A clean family movie which I recommend highly.

Andhadhun A Movie.

I went to a movie after three months! Not because I had better things to do but, nothing new came up that interested me. Andhadhun however has received rave reviews and a very dear friend who saw it wrote specially to me to go and see it. So, I was escorted by R and M in style yesterday and had a grand evening out. Even the traffic God was kind and we reached the venue fifteen minutes ahead of time and had to wait for the auditorium to be cleaned after the previous screening before we could go in. And the good fortune continued on the way back too and even the traffic lights were in our favour.

It is rare indeed to see a Bollywood movie in the Black Comedy genre and this one is among the blackest. There are occasions when it becomes difficult to believe that it is a comedy after all but, over all the blackness is very present and exciting. Every moment of the 2 hours and 20 minutes of the running time was well spent. Says something about the excellent editing and direction.

That the movie was made in Pune and many scenes are from places that I am familiar with, was icing on the cake..

Very much worth seeing and I give it a five star rating. Please do not miss it if you can possibly get to see it on the big screen.

Book Club.

I was determined to see Book Club one way or the other as the cast was simply too inviting not to. Unfortunately the theatres that I frequent have not screened it and the one somewhat close by is showing it only at 10.30 pm. The only alternative was for me to go 12 Kms to another suburb to see it and I am glad that I made the effort. The multiplex and the mall in which it is located were a new experience for me and I enjoyed that too.

Diane Keaton, Jane Fonda, Candice Bergen, and Mary Steenburgen, carry the show between them effortlessly if somewhat under supported by Jane Fonda. The three males. Andy Garcia, Don Johnson and Richard Dreyfus play unusual supporting roles quite well and under the very able direction of Bill Holderman, the presentation keeps one completely engrossed in the film throughout.

The theme is serious but the presentation is in the comedy genre and it is very appealing. There are serious moments but, even these bring some humour to them.

A thoroughly enjoyable film and if you can see it, don’t miss it.