Monday, August 27, 2007

Blog Action Day!

"What would happen if every blog published posts discussing the same issue, on the same day? One issue. One day. Thousands of voices."

"On October 15th, bloggers around the web will unite to put a single important issue on everyone’s mind - the environment. Every blogger will post about the environment in their own way and relating to their own topic. Our aim is to get everyone talking towards a better future."

For more details visit

Got to know about this thru a few other blogger friends of mine. I found this to be pretty interesting! If you do too, go ahead and promote blog action day! 49 days to go :)

Monday, August 20, 2007

Mani Ratnam...Movies...

After some music and books, now it's time for movies.

Mani Ratnam needs no introduction... most of us will agree that he is one of the finest directors of indian cinema. I have been a great fan of Mani Ratnam and always had this desire to own the entire collection of his movies with me, especially the tamil movies. Now am glad that I have about 10 of them :) About 3 weeks back I watched these 2 tamil movies - "Mouna Ragam" and "Kannathil Muthamittal".... now I am an even bigger fan of his!

Mouna Ragam - means 'silent music' or 'silent symphony'. It can be regarded as one of his best movies ever - featuring Revathi, Mohan and Karthik.. all classy actors. Music by Illayaraja is brilliant. (for those who haven't heard...the title song of Cheeni Kum has the same music as that of the title song of Mouna Ragam.. ) The story is a simple one... which is probably told many times in lots of movies... about a woman is forced into an arranged marriage and lives with her husband in delhi... but is still in love with her boyfriend, a gangster who was shot dead in front of her at the registrar office on the day they were supposed to get married. The screenplay, direction and cinematography are AWESOME ... no wonder that it won a lot of awards. Supposedly this movie is also his first commercially success one. If you are a fan of south indian movies and mani ratnam especially, then this is a must watch..

Kannathil Muthamittal - means 'A peck on the cheek'. A recent movie featuring Madhavan, Nandita Das and Simran... again all classy actors.. I felt it's a very different story... deals with the emotions of an adopted child (i guess she is around 10 yrs) , who feels betrayed and goes in search of her biological mother. The story is set in the backdrop of the riots and militancy in SriLanka. The theme of the movie is very thought provoking.... There is no need for me to say anythign about the direction, cinematography etc... he won the "Swarna Kamal" award for this film, from the President APJ Abdul Kalam...

The best part is that each of his movies has a unique theme... and each one is different in its own way..... He is also known to extract best and natural performances from child actors... Shamili in Anjali and Keerthana in Kannathil Muthamittal both won National awards. It's also intersting to note that he has a kid in almost all of his movies... not necessarily as the main character...

His movies that I've seen so far and admired...
  • Anjali (nominated to the Oscars..... always tops my list)
  • Roja
  • Alai Payuthe
  • Bombay
  • Uyirae (Dil Se in hindi)
  • Kannathil Muthamittal
  • Mouna Ragam
  • Yuva (Aayitha Ezuthu)
  • Guru

The ones in the pipeline.. that I am soon going to watch...

  • Iruvar
  • Agni Nakshatram
  • Nayagan
  • Pallavi Anupallavi (Kannada movie starring Anil kapoor)
  • Thiruda Thiruda
  • Dumm Dumm Dumm
  • Geethanjali
I guess there is no movie of his that I may 'not like'... probably like it a little less than few of his others... truly a versatile and a brilliant director!!

Thursday, August 16, 2007

My Feudal Lord....

.... a book that I read over the last few days. It brought in some sleepless nights and still leaves me a bit disturbed. This was the first time I read such a book, about women abuse and traumatic experiences... there were points where I just kept the book down and couldn't read further.. coz I felt so disgusted abt things described in it. Authored by Tehmina Durrani, a Pakistani woman, the book is a real life story about her life... her traumatic experience in her marriage with Ghulam Mustafa Khar, the former chief minister of Punjab and a famous pakistani politician during the time of Zulfikar Ali Bhutto. Mustafa was also known as the 'Lion-of-Punjab' and came from the Feudal background ..... There's also a lot of info on the political scenario in Pakistan between 1950-1980...

If you look at the book as a literary critic, then you will be quite disappointed... becoz Tehmina is not a writer by profession. The chapters are not well organized, and the paragraphs are quite unstructured. If I left a chapter unread and had to get back to it in the middle, then there was no way I wud remember the context of the story. Anyways... she says that her aim of writing the book was more to break the silence and let the world know about the male dominated pakistani society, the plight and misery of the women, where they had to constantly go thru a lot of mental and physical abuse.. ......and... expose the hypocrisy of the elite ruling class in pakistan...

What really surprised me was the fact that Tehmina always went back to her husband even after going thru all those violent abuses, sometimes nearing her to death. She reasons that this was becoz a female divorcee in the muslim society was treated with no respect... and her life wud have been made hell... But still, would someone go thru so much, just coz of the societal pressure?!?! Well, I guess even these days there are women who do not raise a concern when they are physically abused by their husbands, for the sole reason of protecting their marriage... I guess it is easier said than done.... But hats off to her that she did not give up till the end, and finally managed to get out of the living hell and got a divorce from her husband...

I admire her courage for writing this book 'coz am sure it wud have been a difficult task for her to have exposed all those big names in the political domain and the finer details of her personal life... The book, when released, received a lot of negative criticism ... She says she had to even go thru some investigations and trials in the court becoz of some info that she revealed in her book...
All in all... it's definitely worth a read... a heavy book.... might put u into lot of introspection and trigger some 'deep thinking' about various aspects of life... especially about personal relationships

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Soulful music...

Last few posts of mine have been about music.... that's what I've been doing off late.. listening to more and more songs.. of different genres... and now I have one more to add to it.

I'm sure most of us would have heard of Kailash Kher, one of the most popular singers of sufi music.. of the "Allah ke bandhe" fame, who also features in the league of singers like Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan and Rabbi Shergill. I just happened to listen to one of his songs, on TV, from his recent album and I was so touched by it. This made me download a lot of his songs and when I heard them I was just mesmerized by his voice. Ifelt, till now, I was really missing out on some good piece of music! His raw, high-pitched voice coupled with meaningful lyrics makes his songs so unique and literally "soulful". It's amazing to see the kind of energy and the vibes that are generated when u sing his songs... really wonderful!

If u haven't heard him yet, then here are some of the songs that u ought to hear..
  • Teri deewani ... (his best song so far..)
  • Allah ke bandhe..
  • Chak de phatte..
  • Piya re piya re..
  • Kinna sona...

Thursday, August 9, 2007

Old is gold...

I listened to Mohd.Rafi today after a long time... there seems to be some kind of a magic in his voice that makes me keep listening to his songs .. Sometimes they wud be on my playlist for months! Undoubtedly, Rafi and Kishore Kumar have a golden voice and are among the best singers that Bollywood has ever seen...

I wanted to pick 10 songs of Rafi that I love... but I found it extremely tough to shortlist just 10 ... everything seems to be so good. Anyways, here are my favorite top 10 Rafi songs...

1. Kaun hai jo sapno mein aaya ... (Jhuk gaya aasman)
2. Deewana hua baadal.. (Kashmir ki kali)
3. Gun guna rahe hai bhawrein.. (Aaradhana)
4. Khoya khoya chand... (Kala bazar)
5. Pukarta chala hu mein... ( Mere Sanam)
6. Aankhon hi aankhon mein... (CID)
7. Gulabi aankhein jo teri dekhi... (cant remember the movie name)
8. Tumse accha kaun hai.. (Jaanwar)
9. Teri bindiya re.. (Abhimaan)
10.O haseena... (Teesri manzil)

If u haven't heard any of these.. I suggest u listen to them ...... am sure u will see the magic that I am talking about :)

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

New look...

It's been a long time since I changed the look 'n feel of my blog... so thought of giving it a makeover...

Liked this new coffee cup template... for its simplicity....