Mdeii Life - Anand Krishnamoorthi's blog
Saturday, January 24, 2004
Recovering from a rather violent bout of I-don�t-know-what fever, I am off to Trichy for a cousin�s wedding.
Monday, January 19, 2004
�Gumbal, Sundal and a lil bit of Bloggal�, I realised, was more like �Kadal, Kadalai and a little bit of Koffee�: all three in full supply and the last one costing eight Rupees.
Saturday, January 17, 2004
Relapse of an old affliction
In school, I had this singular passion for what we used to mark in our timetables as Soc. Stud., or sometimes with an even more minimal S.S. After a visit to the book-fair with this passion for history, geography & literature, and a new-found interest in Tamil writing, my house is filled with maps and books on Tamil history. Now, the time and place for every event in Ponniyin Selvan can be accurately determined as I read it.
Of chance meetings and some other deliberate ones
Walking through the orderly chaos of the book fair, I bumped into LazyGeek having an animated discussion with Sujatha Rangarajan. Having exchanged handshakes and other pleasantries, plans for attending the 3rd Annual Chennai bloggers meet have been made.
Authors of history
Not just this book or the rest of Kalki�s historical works, generally, as far as historical writing goes, I have come to believe in some thing now. Historical facts; collected from oral traditions, archaeological evidence, manuscripts etc.; can never completely recreate the whole truth. Therefore, one has to rely on intuition, and more importantly, ones own political and socio-cultural beliefs in order to interpret such stories for a contemporary audience. One also has to understand the current climate and figure out how a particular slant to history can contribute to progressive social discourse, and eventually, political thought. So, I feel that rather than go into a near futile odyssey to discover an objective historical truth, re-interpreters of history need to put all that effort into understanding current conditions and future aspirations of the audience.
If I ever make a historical film, I know that I would be re-interpreting history, or at least looking at past events through the eyes of some other author. For authors of historical literature and cinema, social awareness is not just essential, but is also hugely effective in taking care of two things: (1) the reality/relatability factor and (2) the fantasy/aspirational factor.
I have never seriously read Tamil literature. Reading this fast-paced, action-packed book written by Kalki did more than give me a thorough brush-up of my reading skills.
Many readers would feel that this book seems to have been written just for it to be turned into a screenplay. I definitely think so. Most of the action in this book takes place around my native place on the banks of the Cauvery. About this book, I have a lot of thoughts and ideas and I am ready to exchange notes with other aficionados. BTW it would be great if you have seen Akira Kurosawa�s The Hidden Fortress.
Three Men in a Boat (to say nothing of the reader)
Jerome K Jerome is absolutely hilarious. The book is also very evocative of its times. I somehow seem to have enjoyed this book better now than I did in my schooldays, also considering the fact that hitherto I had only read extracts. Very endearing it is, that I too have a close set of friends with whom I can connect in many ways and yet, we try and appreciate each other for our differences and varying tastes.
Wednesday, January 07, 2004
...of many positives to look forward to: Indo-Pak & Indo-Aus. If today�s events are any indication, we have better things to look forward to in the future.
Monday, January 05, 2004
A very powerful and revered person grants (I don�t know in return for what) a little know ruler, a big gift (including some really powerful weapons). Now our newly potent man starts flaunting his favour and throws his weight around. He terrorises his neighbours and imprisons dissidents. Now the grand old powerful person now has a son who he sends across to get rid of his nuisance beneficiary. The son teams up with a really articulate ally and goes after the rogue power with weapons of mass destruction. The son destroys a whole island nation with a missile and in return the rogue gasses a field of combatants with a nerve agent. Enraged by the use of chemical weapons, the son orders decapitation strikes while the top villains hide. (In spider holes?) However, having lost his offspring, his siblings and most of his kin, the tormented man, rather than be taken alive and humiliated, dies fighting. His land is taken (and renamed), the prisoners freed and personal souvenirs and bounties are collected.
This is not an imaginative account of Gulf War II; this is the story of Soorasamharam, the mythology of Muruga and Sooran.
This is the first George Stevens movie I have seen. A very absorbing movie that is relatable and relevant on many levels. Wonderful performances from Liz Taylor, Rock Hudson, and the inimitable James Dean.
One thing that kept me thinking was how closely elements from Giant resembled Francis Ford Coppola�s The Godfather. The movies are completely unrelated except for the fact that both are family sagas, but there is an almost subliminal similarity of little things: from framing to dialogues to set-ups and to production design, where Coppola seemed to allude to this movie. It could, after all, be a huge coincidence or a case of the clich�d great-men-thinking-alike thing: I don�t remember Coppola ever mentioning Giant while talking about The Godfather.
Watch this movie if you want thought provoking and entertaining relaxation. The movie lasts a little over three hours on screen, but is the kind of film that�ll stay inside your head for a lot longer.
Thursday, January 01, 2004
Conditional Access System really leaves you with a feeling of having lost your manhood. No live cricket. During my father�s younger days, he had radio. But in today�s days of sole broadcasting licences, CAS and Rupert Murdoch, I have to make do with little text tickers at the bottom of news channel screens. Having �read� through three tests, one of them a victory, I really am looking forward to the decider: of course there is also a live text-cast to look forward to.
Greetings to you!
Of course, I spent the evening at home with family and I somehow don�t have any regrets about not being elsewhere. I was at home doing what I love doing and do best: watch movies. Maybe in the years to come, when I think I deserve better, I�d help myself to a good party.
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