Thursday, August 08, 2019

Friendship day

It is a proven sign of ageing that, you no longer feel the need to share any funky forwards on special days and neither does people in your circuit. But for those aarva kolaar’s, who still share the mandatory forward to groups, a message that would’ve been shared across the planet a couple of more times, when hardly any one bothers to take the trouble, it is evident that the circle of acquaintances have aged as well. Beyond everything, when you don’t even bother to download and read those messages, but simply delete or ignore them, you’ve attained the state of “forwards” nirvana. I’ve always been a borderline case when it comes to groups. Somehow, I would never be fully in nor fully out. Never had someone for whom I can be counted as 3 AM friend. And those who really know me, will never call me at that time. An Egyptian mummy, getting resurrected, has a better chance of picking the call!!! So the following conversation actually came as a surprise, when it did happen around the time mentioned.
Unable to fall asleep, I was reading a novel on my phone.
“Ennapa pannitruka”
Was taken aback to hear Junior’s voice.
“Nee ennapa pannitruka..go to sleep. Night aaiduchu paaru..kaathala school poganum”
“Nanum phona paakren”
“Ungamma paatha rendu periyum kondruva..naanum paakla..let’s sleep”
I switched off the phone and he cuddled close to me.
“Pa..”
“mmm”
“Neeyum naanum friends”
“Friends!! Yaar sonna intha word”
“School la pa”
He was already half asleep and just hugged me and slept.
I slept too, with a smile on my face J

Wednesday, August 07, 2019

Lion king - movie review

Junior’s first theater outing. Was in two minds, where to shore out, if in case all those noise and darkness unnerve him. That too his very first movie being a 3D one was making me all the more skeptical. Needless to say, he took to it like a duck to water. Right from the time, the giraffes and zebras and other animals started making their appearance one after another, he was super excited and was calling out each of them, with the loudest cheer reserved for rhinos!! By the time the Monkey lifted Simba and announced the cub to the pride land folks, Junior was well and truly into it. Beyond a while, the 3D effect was nauseating for us and I never used those glasses. He was asking for a bit as to what was happening on screen as we had gone for an English version. Pretty sure he would’ve posed as many queries had it been in tamil as well. Especially near to the climax, he was getting scared witnessing the fights between Hyenas and the lions and turned his head away. Otherwise, he sat through the whole 2 hours and enjoyed every minute of it. All credit to wifey for pushing through for last 3 weeks to get the tickets booked. Apprehensions apart, she was keen to introduce him to theater watching experience. And considering that he did enjoy it, probably would try some more down the line as well. Idhellam naangalay pazhakki vitutu, naaliki padam paaka, avanay theater pona thitta vendiyathu. Typical parents!! Oops. Mindvoice nenachu sathama pesiten.

As a movie, even as animation, Lion king was never my favorite. Had a hard time to get over Mufasa’s demise. Story wise, it is typically Manmohan Desai territory and gels well with Bolly-Kollywood script strategies. But somehow, felt the movie was rushed in its ending as compared to the animation version. Not sure if it was a frame to frame remake, but thought the other version had a more complete storyline. Unlike this one, where in the grown up Simba, speaks to the monkey for 2 seconds and off he goes to attack scar!! Due credit to be given to those in charge of the visual effects. Even if a real lion had enacted its role, wouldn’t have been so authentic!!! Especially the dung beetle sequence, which comes for like 1 minute in the whole movie. Amazing level of sincerity and dedication with which they’ve churned out the effects. And voice overs are top notch. James Earl Jones, the voice of Darth Vader, as Mufasa – guess no other language translators can match up to the might of his voice and for this reason alone, the English version would stand heads and shoulders above every other thing. “In the jungle, lion goes to sleep tonight” song was introduced to me by Marcel the monkey, from FRIENDS. I loved the song so much that for long it was on my playlist. “Circle of Life” is another favorite from the movie but “Hakuna matata” is forever the top one. Be it on Hindi or English, it has always remained a fan favorite one for many.

Gils verdict – I could see lot of kids, juniors age and above, laugh at all the jokes and fun moments in the movie and even clapped when the Simba junior makes an appearance. To me, those playful moments between Mufasa and Simba resonate a lot more. It was too real even as a cartoon and even more realistic in its present form. While coming back from the movie, wifey was mentioning about how costly the tea is at the chai king franchise. Junior immediately stepped in to correct – “Ma..its Lion king and not chai king”.

Circle of life it is J

Monday, August 05, 2019

Fringe - What a drama!!!

I am almost done with season 3 and the fringe drama series has been all the more impressive, to say the least, across these 3 seasons. What initially started as some mad scientist, letting loose, his weird experiments on unassuming public has turned into an emotional drama of father son bonding, taking the central role, alongside the weird(fringe) events. It is amazing, how time and again, the script writers of the US drama series, work out such amazingly interesting stuff. Obviously they are having the cushion of a movie budget for every episode. But still, when one looks at the end result, it is definitely worth the buck spent. Pretty sure, they would’ve had lot more storylines thought out per episode and credit goes to the editors as well, for retaining the most interesting parts and leaving out the rest. Considering the story lines gets worked out only for 6 months an year and at times stretches over several years, it is no less an ask to ensure the sanity of the storyline and make sure all the dots are connected. Especially for thriller series like Fringe, where the initial eyeball catch bait situations, are required to be well established and linked back to the main storyline, well into the middle of seasons down the line. Having a sci-fi thriller that keeps the viewers engaged, ensuring that they don’t get over awed by the content at the same time, it is not too dumbed down, itself is a herculean task. Fitting in it deep emotional situations involving father-son bonding and love triangle between one couple, whether the 3rd person is none other than the same person from a parallel universe, is all the more fantastic. Kudos to the writers for conceiving such amazing storylines and that they’ve been well enacted too, is an understatement. My initial impression about the hero character was totally wrong. For all the sidelining in season 1, it got setup nicely on subsequent seasons and his role has grown so much into prominence that, makes all the more sense, why this character was given so much build up at the beginning.

Specifically around the dad-son bonding part, it shows the power of love and the extent to which a dad will go to save his son, even if he is on a different universe. The concept of the mad scientist, making a device to cross over onto a parallel universe, that too, to the exact spot where his alter ego and alter family resides and take the son from other universe and making it back to his own, is nothing short of kaadhula poo. If you can skip around the logic part, it is the reason that sets this sequence apart and forms the soul of the entire series itself. All those changes to the timelines that happen because of this act by the mad scientist, its implications on the other world, the revenge acts by them and the defense by the people on the prime world, all makes up for a fantastic set up to a grand finish, till now. Makes one really wonder will we ever see such attempts, even on a minor scale, ever be attempted in Indian setup. With web series, opening up lot of avenues for people to compromise less on their content, possibly, sometime down the line, we may have our own versions of such novel plots as well. The series comprises of 100 episodes and I’ve done watching about 50 of them. My personal favorite of the lot being, cross over swap, of the heroine character across the universes, how both of them end up loving the same person on the prime universe and the complications that arise out of it. Even though the hero was in love with the heroine, even though she is the same person, she is from another universe and the scene where the lady explains the difference was awesome. And the other aspect being the dad-son setup. Quite heartwarming.

Not quite sure, whether I would like the ending. But till now, the series has been top notch and is right up there on my favorites.

Monday, July 29, 2019

Shootout @ sholinganallur

“Gilsbert please be at office by 9 AM tomorrow. We’ve a shooting tomorrow”
“Why midnight shoot boss? Any horror movie in making?”
Oppicer gave him the look HDK reserves for Yeddy.

Next day at oppice.
Gilsbert reports sharp at 10.30AM.

“Dei..unna eppo vara sonnen..”
“boss..naan sindubad mathiri 7 kadal ettu malai thaandi comings. Ithaan ennoda earliest possible entry”
“Side character role kay ivlo latea variye..unnalaam herova poatta ..velangidum. Script anupinene padichia”
“Yes boss”
“Enga sollu”
“Blah..blah..blah…”
“Idhelaam naan sollavay illiye..”
“Konjam mane thene naane add pannikiten boss”
“Ivlo lengthyalaam venaa..konjam kami pannu”
“blah..blah..”
“Innum konjam reduce pannu”
“blah”
“still lengthy”
“bl..”
“hmmmm…”
“Naan innum sollavay aarambikalaiye..”
“Avlo podhum..michatha voice overla paathukalam.. ready shoot”
“Hallo..hallo..wait..intha touchup lam iliya”
“Grrrr”
“Atleast oru apple juice”
“Canteenla kaasu kuduthu vaangikka…anga poitu apdiye antha cubiclela kai vachitu nillu..dei..camerava paathu nilluda”
“boss..naan camera paathu thaan nikkaren..mela paarunga”
“moodevi..adhu security camera..intha pakkama paaru”
“ok boss.”
“Naan ready sonnathum..dialogue sollanum..ok”
“Done boss”
“Ready..start”
“Blah.blah.blah..blah…ok va boss”
“adeii…nan stop solrathukulla yaar mudika sonna..once more”
“bl..hmm..enna sonennu maranthu poachay”
“dei..oray oru line thana kuduthen..intha padichi tholai..”
“Ready boss”
“Start”
“blah..hmmm..blah…blahblah”
“Edhuku ivlo vegama solra..medhuva pesu..” The charade went on for a zillion plus takes and finally the battery ran out.
“Gilsbert..inimay no dialogue for you..only action. Anga poitu access card swipe panni door open pannitu camera paaru.. avlo thaan scene”
Gilsbert goes to the door and swipes his Access card. Door doesn’t open.
“Ennachu”
“Access lock aaiduchu boss”
“vera yaar cardaiyachum vaangi open pannu..”
“adhu violation aachay boss”
“adei…video ku pose kudukathanada solren..usira vaangatha po”
By the time Gilsbert opens the door, someone from other side opens it.
“oops..sorry..”
Oppicer is seen going beet root in color like Tom and faints.
“Adapavingala…ungala shooting eduka poitu oppiceruku BP shoot up aaidchu…Oru RFP ku shoot panna vanthavara RIP aakiteengalayda”

Gilsbert escapes from that place silently.

Thursday, July 18, 2019

Kolai Kolaiya munthirikka -3

part 1
part 2


Time: 2 AM
Venue: Vasantham apartments

"Boss...Boss"
"Moodhevi mundame..engada poi tholanja...ethana neram ipdi setha mathirye nadikarathu..nejamavay moochu vitrum polaruku"
"Kochikatheenga boss..antha rendu loosunga panra kootha paathu semma thamashaa irunthuchu..aama Police edhuku thideernu vanthanga"
"mmm...Naan thaan koopten..oru thrilla irukatumay nu"
" aama neenga edhuku setha maathiri nadicheenga"
"Unakku ellathiyum pathu thadava sollanuma..athaan appove sonnenla"
"Saria puriala boss..thirumba sollunga"
"Inniki enna naal.."
"vellikezhama...ummm...ipo night 2 mani aaguthu..appo sanikezhama sollanuma"
"romba mukkiyam..apdiye kabali kovil saneeswarar sannidhala poi velakku poatutu vaa..moodhevi..inniki thaan antha rascal Manickam deadline vachirukaan..avan sharea pirichi kudukka..plan padi..naan setha mathiri nadichi..avan inga varapo avana sika vachi policela maati udlaamnu plan pannirunthen...setha mathiri nadikka practice panitrunthapo engentho vantha intha rendu moodhevinga plan ellathiyum sothapidithunga"
"Appo policeku phone pannathum practicekagava boss?"
"Ellam oru checkup kaga thaan...call record aagum. Naaliki investigation nadakarapo case inum strong aagum...mun virotham adhu idhunu mothama antha payala ulla thallidalam"
"Ellam ok..neenga thaan uyiroda irupeengalay..apo epdi ithelam possible?"
"Epdiyum post mortem panna bodya eduthukitu porachay..police ku dimikki kuduthutu escape aadilaamnu thaan...epdi en idea"
"Pramaadham boss...aana neenga uyiroda irukarathu velila terinja, antha Manickam payala police vitutu, ungala pudichi ulla potruvangalay"
"Adhukelaam ready panniyaachu"
"Super boss..appo enniki enga epdi saaga poreenganu munnadiye solidunga..sonthakaranga yarukelam solanum..sadangu sambradhayamnu enakku egapatta velai iruku..advancea oru amount kudunga"
"Adai..naan saagara mathri nadika thana poren..adhuku edhukuda sadangu sambrathayam"
"Ellariyum namba vaikanumla"
"ohh..apdi onnu iruko..hmmm..yosikaren"
"boss oru doutbtu"
"Ennada..saagara nerathula oru doubtu?"
"Police Manickatha arrest panna..athenna section..vasanth and co 302"
"Moodevi..adhu Vasanth and co ..chellamani and co laam illa.ee.pee.co. IPC 302"
"aaannh...athaan..adhula arrest panni thookula potruvangala"
"Avan usarathuku avana thookula enna..andaaa laye podalam...ekkedu ketta unakenna...usira vaangatha..saagara nerathula"
"aamam boss..avan nethi kooda emmaam perusu...pin kazhuthu varaikum poguthu"
"adai..athuku peru vazhukkai da.."
"ooohhh...naan athuanala thaan four head nu solraangalo nenachen.."
"All worlds, four head irukara oray aal, brahma thaan..anegama unna padachaprum..thalaikku oru sevuthula muttitu irupaar nenakren"
"Ok boss..ipo adutha kata nadavadikkai enna"
"Naan ingayae iruken..nee namma guest house poitu..anga en bedroomla intha suitcase badhrama vachitu vaa"
"Edhu..namma mylapore guest housea"
"aama"
"intha sai baba kovilaanda irukkay"
"adhey thaan"
"address sollunga..vazhi teriathu"
"Moodevi..ennamo veetaiyae kattinavan mathiri pesina...nera poitu rightu..Green trends saloon otinaapola pora theru"
"Green trends na..vettina pola nu thaana sollanum...otina polangara...sutha waste ba nee"
"Romba mukkiyam..moodevi..sonnatha sei.."
"Seri..antha suitcase konjam erakki kudu..ivlo usaramaana bureau mela vacha..epdi edukaratham"
"Unakku evan Albert nu per vachaan...un usarathuku baby albert nu thaan sollanum...intha..potti badhram"

Meanwhile Ram and Anil searching for bag to carry the corpse....
"Kaalaiyil thinamum kan vizhithaal" sang Ram's phone.
"Dei Ram..paatu kekara neramada idhu...phone off panra mudhalla..inniki yaar kannula kaalila muzhicheno..unkita maatikiten"
"aaama...un kitta maatikitu naan padre paatuku..cinema paatu onnu thaan kurachal..call varuthu"
"phone silentla podu...yarachum ketutu velila vanthira poranga..hmmm....kaalaila kanvizhicha entha jail la kali thinga poromo nu bayama iruku..."
"Nee vera enda adikadi jail kali koozhu nu bayamuruthara..naama enna kolaiya panitom"
"naama illa..aana nee panitiye"
"unna thaan kolla poren...pesama vaa...hmm..intha saaaku podhuma paaru"
"Neeye decide pannu Ram..intha saaku solra matterlam unakku thaan Nalla varuthu"
"paduthathada...innoru saaaku kedaikutha paaru"
"Idhu poruma" Anil shows one small carry bag
"Epdi..Sivaramana cut panni piece piecea eduthundu polaamnu plan panria...moodevi..peria bag a paaru"
"uvvaaa...kekarathukay kumatrathu..." Anil vomits on that bag itself
"Peeda....unakenna masakkaiya...enda ipdi uyira vaangara..aama athenna mudhugula kangaroo mathiri bag vachinde suthara"
"Vara Sunday fathers day..adhukaga appaku veshti jibba vaangiruken..present panna"
"intha englishkaranukelam arivay illa..appava yarachum "dei" potu kupduvangala..athenna fathers day"
"athukaga tamizhla appa naalu nu sonna kudumbathula kozhapam varathu"
"moodhevi..naan mokka poata badhiluku mokkiaya...first class idea..antha veshtiya ipdi kudu"
"edhukuda..pant mela kattika poria..kaal thadukaathu?"
"chee..ithaala thaan dead bodya parcel panna poren"
"Adapaavi...adhu enga appaku vangina gift da"
"vera veshit vaangikalam"
"Appa keta enna solrathu"
"vera appa..."
"ennathu"
"ada..vera vaangitharen appa nu sollikoda"

Tuesday, July 16, 2019

Junior the Naradhar

It was on the day of his school interview, like Prakash raj from “Abhiyum Naanum”, we both were equally tensed around, how junior would handle the session. We reached the school venue an hour early. The security guy must’ve seen thousands of “enthu pattaanis” like us I guess. He shooed us away and asked to come back ten minutes before the interview time slot. When we finally entered the auditorium, it was like an outpatient ward of a hospital. Some kids were screaming, in some case it was the parents. One guy was seen chastising his kid and wife in equal measure. The kid was not repeating the rhymes he was trying to teach and was looking elsewhere. The receptionist was calling out names in her own sweet order. Junior felt restless and started walking over the chairs. There was a huge ground, which was one of the primary reason for us to pick that school, just outside the auditorium and junior wanted to check it out. When I was taking him out, wifey sternly warned not to step away from her ear shot as they may call us anytime. We were loitering around the bushes near the entrance, when junior started pestering for a walk on the sand. When he asks for something, he would plead with folded hands and puppy dog eyes, which would be impossible to resist. I didn’t realize how far we had moved from the venue, when suddenly I could hear some familiar scream. It was wifey, standing near the entrance, with her eyes blazing and luckily for us, the presence of other parents, prevented any beatings. She solidly scolded me for taking him out so far and making him all sweaty in the hot sun, with impending interview. Not that the school rejected anyone based on the session, but it was a fair chance not to risk. After listening to the verbal barrage, junior mildly asked “Did amma scold you a lot today?”!!!
During the interview, they showed some pics and asked him to name them, which he did with ease. One pic was a bouncer even for me, for it was made out of several cuttings of paper. I was thinking of which shape it represented, when junior called it out as elephant, which apparently it was!! Seems the “craft” work was done by the teacher who asked the question and she beamed with pride that someone did manage to make out whatever was the shape she had actually intended. The session went well and they asked us to pay the fees for enrolling the kid. On the way back, he patted wifey and said “don’t scold appa” and smiled at me. She thought I was the one who had directed him and was staring mad at me. Avvvvvvvvvvvvvvv… Pandrathellaam pannitu..epdi korthu viduthu!!!

Chaotic times

We are in the midst of something big that is happening. Biblical prophecies around apocalypse sound more sensible than present times.

Might sound like a starting line for some thriller novel or prophecy. But if you take a step back and have a careful look at day to day happenings, it would be surprising to miss out on these obvious situations. Should one call it as awakening or awareness, I am not sure. But more and more people are getting exposed to everything under the name of information. News channels, which ten years back would’ve been the sole proprietor of breaking news are facing a run for their controversy money, with anyone and everyone with a mobile phone and data pack, starting their own channel on You tube. You can be as stupid as possible, in fact, the more you tend towards the extreme side of the spectrum, the more famous and popular you become. Case in point being, Sam Anderson and Power star. One look at their videos, you would laugh off at their attempts. Second time, might tempt a forward to your friend. In the name of mocking, the video goes viral and the person achieves insta fame. TV channels looking for anything to boost their TRP’s would swoop in on such characters and that’s it. Their life is set. Soon, they become expert on everything under the sun. You can’t pass comments on them anymore like how you did while watching the video for the first time, because, by now, they would’ve formed an army, a literal army of followers, of blind followers, who would go to any extreme to defend their craze!! 2 decades back, it was Rajinists vs Kamalians. Prior to that it might have been MGRians VS Sivajiites. But now every single damn person on the tube has a love hate fraternity!! There is this reality show on TV where in one lady casually mentions about the way the other lady participants are dressing and posing. Ten years back, such costumes wouldn’t even have made their way into ads, leave alone primetime programs. But the program, supposedly targeting family audience, blatantly misuses its tag, with so much of cussing and swearing that every alternate sentence carries a beep. Anything and everything is being questioned with an air of arrogance. While the intent to question augurs well for an intelligent society, the arrogance of disrespect is bound to cause chaos and we are already witnessing a whole lot of them. Should acceptance be considered as tolerance? Should being open about your thoughts and deeds necessarily mean outspoken? Should everyone have an opinion about every damn thing under the sun?!!! Single parents, divorcees, wantonly spinsters, not by choice bachelors, gender confused groups are all on the rise. While every single segregation of these groups can defend and offend themselves, why are they suddenly on the rise? Is it because we have become more open as a society or more closed?

The more I look at people around me, the more I feel..aged!!! My school days and college days, which ever devoid of internet, where very slow to say the least. The same newspaper, that I used to read wrapper to wrapper for hours together, hardly takes ten minutes. For I’ve become prejudiced and biased about the content, the publisher, the article and the journalist as well. My mind refuses to accept anything that is being published on papers that have carried false news prior. Is it called polarization?? Will this aspect be tagged to a party and branded as someone or something? On one hand I see so many people, who couple of years ago would’ve been unemployed are becoming employers and are enjoying their work, which was non-existent a few years back. On other hands I see scores and scores of people who are opting to settle for lesser and lesser as they find themselves ill suited to the present day needs. Be it on professional or personal front. There is so much noise abound everywhere and inside that even at the quietest of times, its deafeningly loud. Maybe there is a reason why people take to the hills. Far away from this maddening crowd and cacophony.

Friendship day

It is a proven sign of ageing that, you no longer feel the need to share any funky forwards on special days and neither does people in your ...