This round-up is long overdue and I’ve been delaying this only because I’m not sure how to organise two-pages worth of links. So now I’m biting the bullet and dismissing any prospect of organisation. These are just links, in no particular order.
The Lego Movie is, without a doubt, one of the most awesome movies I’ve seen. (Spaceship! Spaceship! Spaceship!) (Everything is awesome!) Sure, it’s product placement, but it’s also adorable and very, very clever. And maybe even a little subversive.
Recently, The Times of India published an article that said Aleph had recalled copies of On Hinduism by Wendy Doniger from bookstores in Bangalore. It’s not quite clear what’s happening with On Hinduism because Aleph has only issued an odd, confusing statement. However, the Doniger affair began with Penguin deciding to withdraw and pulp existing copies of her book, The Hindus. More on freedom of expression here.
Marathi cinema is seeing something of a resurgence, after having been squashed and starved by Hindi blockbusters. One of the films that proves this renaissance is the gorgeous and heartbreaking Fandry.
A review of Gunday, which is perhaps the most graphic Bollywood bromance I’ve seen.
Nishtha Jain’s documentary on activist Sampat Pal, Gulabi Gang, is an interesting documentary on Pal and her organisation. There’s always so much eager to attack men and families that are strangers or unrelated. When it’s one of the Gulabi Gang’s own who is involved, everything becomes more complicated.
My review of Highway, a film that I thought was ok right after watching it. In hindsight, the more I think about it, the less I like it, particularly the end where the victim of a kidnapping imagines herself and her kidnapper as children, gambolling around a picturesque countryside. Because you know, that’s what kidnap is: child’s play.
Honestly, I wasn’t expecting great insight from Shaadi Ke Side Effects, but neither did I expect the film to unravel as much as it did.
There’s a new season of actor Aamir Khan’s talk show, Satyamev Jayate, on Indian television.
Alexander Payne’s Nebraska, which is slow but just such a wonderful, contemporary look at Americana. He’s so good at capturing family dynamics and making the seemingly dysfunctional reveal itself as strangely endearing.
Ok, I admit I liked watching the Oscars as a kid. I got up at the crack of dawn and took great joy in the fact that I was in my jammies while the red carpet stars had to scrub themselves into their high fashion. But let’s face it, not only have the Oscars revealed themselves to be the product of much lobbying, even the dresses aren’t as much fun as they used to be. Remember JLo wearing a dupatta held together by a brooch? Tilda Swinton in her kaftan? Now the Oscars is the kind of do to which someone like Lady Gaga comes wearing a totally regular dress. So disappointing. However, since I’d have to get up and watch it, I figured a drinking game was the best way to make Oscars fun.
By far the best chick flick I’ve seen come out of Bollywood is Queen, with Ranaut delivering a brilliant performance (and superb dialogues) as a young Dilliwali who conquers Europe and herself.