Movie review: Aisha

My rating: 3.5/5

Aisha!! No hang ups. A simple, cool chick flick. No substance. Not a really great story line. Lot of similarities to Sex and the City. Awesome clothes. A very pretty Sonam and Sonam all the way. Very girlie. Chilled out. Shouldn’t be watched with lot of expectations. Time pass.

That kinda summarizes what the movie is all about. A very rich n pretty Aisha (Sonam) is hell bent on acting cupid and getting people to fall in love. Her best friend is Pinky Bose (Don’t know the actor’s name). Then, she meets a not-so-stylish-come-down-to-delhi-to-look-for-bridegroom girl Shefali (Don’t know the actor’s name, but she was cute as well). Aisha takes it upon her to give Shefali a complete make over and fix her up with Randhir Gambhir (Cyrus). He is one of their family friends owning a huge sweet shop business in the city and one of the “oh, I cant stand this guy” types. A character you would say bechaara to!! She fails in that mission cause Randhir is in love with Aisha and proposes to her. She then finds her maasi’s step son, Dhruv (Ah, I dnt wanna knw the actor’s name here..he was ok..looked more like a bouncer!). That fails too cause he hooks up with a New yoker friend of Abhay’s. Hang on, this movie has Abhay Deol as well right ? And I haven’t mentioned him yet ?? Well, precisely the point. Abhay is so wasted in the movie. He comes and goes like the flickering of the candle in the wind!!
He is Aisha’s sister’s brother in law and childhood neighbour. Though they intrinsically like each other a lot, they never show it and are constantly fighting. Abhay aka Arjun keeps warning Aisha to leave Shefali alone to find her man and not to interfere in personal matters. But our little girl doesn’t listen. While Abhay gets a New yoker friend along, Aisha tries flirting with Dhruv. Until Dhurv and the new yoker- ok, her name was Aarthi in the movie become an item!!

While Aisha is soo busy trying to set Shefali up with someone, she doesn’t pay attention to the silent love story happening in the background between her best friend pinky and Randhir (Yes, the pesky guy I told you in the beginning). She loses her friend who calls her arrogant, selfish and mean. The next bomb is when Shefali says she loves Arjun (Abhay) (who is always nice to her) and Aisha somehow doesn’t seem to like that idea. That’s when she realizes that she might actually be in love with Arjun. Aisha realizes that love just happens and cannot be “made” to happen like she was trying so hard with Shefali’s life.

Of course, like all cute whimsical love stories, its happies endings with Arjun and Aisha getting back together. Music by Amit Trivedi (The Dev D guy) was good…a couple of them very good.

You can watch this movie once. Guys who are big fans of Sonam and for the girls who looove shopping and decking up!!


Back from hibernation

Well, I do not want to give reasons for having been so lazy and out of touch with the blogging world. But then, here I am, this is me...back!!

I seem to be very famous at not doing things that I soo badly want to and so passionate about. Be it dance, piano or writing. Nevertheless, I've learnt to stop cribbing about not having time and trying to sqeeze in to do as many things as possible. Its never too late...

I have this huge list of "must do" things before I turn eh...ahem...the age that is termed "your old now" and the biological clock is ticking.

To start with, Ive picked up reading again and you'll see a stream of reviews being posted shortly. Next is to learn a differnt form of dance (the shakira effect still reelin..) and im looking at joining one of the dance studios.

More later.


The 26/11 effect

Thirty one crore and counting.

Thats the amount the government has spent on keeping Kasab, the surviving terrorist of the Mumbai attack. I was shocked to read this today in the papers. Somehow i did feel a sense of anger and pride at the same time!!

Anger for obvious reasons that we're such lame guys. To spend soo many bucks of hard earned money from the Indians to safe guard a person who is responsible for so many deaths of our own people!!!

Pride for we give a fair trial and a chance to even our worst enemy! Thats an Indian heart!

I'm proud of being a part of this country Inspite of all the wrong things we have and do!


Book review: Purple Hibiscus

My rating: 5 / 5
Author: Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Country: Nigeria

This was a total refresher. I’ve never read a book about any African country. Its always been India, US, UK. I’m really glad I picked this up after reading Ramya’s review here.

Life in the Nigerian regions, their lifestyles, customs, beliefs, food; you seem to learn so much about the country as you go along and also experience the adolescent feelings of a 15-year old girl. Coming from a wealthy family, all comforts taken care of, it seems like Kambili is living in heaven until you start to read about her father. A reverend and a fanatic at that, he seems to fully control Kambili’s and her brother Jaja’s life. They have a timetable written out for everything that they need to do including when and how much time they need to spend with their own parents and themselves too!

I had goose bumps and could literally “feel” the emotions when the author describes the thoughts running through Kambili’s mind. She loves her father, respects, infact revers him. Yet, at the same time, she is extremely scared of him and at times really wishes her life was different. Once, Kambili comes second in class and is absolutely petrified to tell her father. The punishment that follows is heart wrenching.

A chance trip to her Aunt’s house and she realises what life is after all and what it is she’s really missing out! Her aunt isn’t as affluent as her father. Yet, she knows that they are a happier family than her own. Happiness, laughter, freedom all suddenly seem alien to her. She sulks in silence dumb struck by the beautiful life her cousins are leading.

The political coup and unrest helps Kambili and her brother and their stay is extended.
Although they show their disappoint of not returning home whenever their father calls, they silently thank god for whats happening. As fantasies go, you need a prince charming to awake you and yes, the little Kambili is for the first time infatuated and that too by a priest in their aunt’s neighbourhood. She starts to smile, then laugh. She does infact look into the mirror and spruce up for the first time in her life. She wears shorts and even goes to watch a football match with her crush!

The story is very well phased out. The first part deals with the time after Kambili and her brother return from their aunt’s house as completely different people, much to the agony of their papa. One Palm Sunday when they return back from church and hell breaks loose. The second phase goes back in time to describe their tale. The final part, my favourite bit of the book, is a silent thriller of what follows after the Palm Sunday events.

I loved the descriptions and the way the climax was portrayed. It made me go back again a few pages and re-read the whole thing till the intensity sank in. Simple words, simple sentences – you read them again and you derive a deeper meaning.

Firstly, the title struck me and secondly, it was a debut novel and finally, there were great reviews on this book. I had to pick it up. I am so inspired by budding talents like this. Most of the books I’ve read in recent times have all been debut novels. And I just hope that some day I could publish my own book and read reviews on it!


The Phenomenon that was

A lot of things have already been said, written and viewed about Michael Jackson. MJ's death like any famous rock star is shroudded with mystery and legal issues. This post is not about the life of this great star (you can get that by just googling for it) or about the mystery surrounding his death (the only big news on TV for the past few days...move aside Kashmir, move aside terrorism!!). Somehow, I was compelled to write this tribute post (even a brief 2 lines) as I know for a fact that he was one of the biggest phenomenon in the world of music.

I have loved and enjoyed MJ's music since my coll days and its sad to see yet another music icon go down this way. With all the controversies - the spooky shadow caught on camera in his neverland home or his body going missing or that a crater on moon is going to be named after him...no one can deny what a talent he was!

If all the weird rumours making the rounds are to be believed, then michael jackson may actually come alive from the coffin and walk straight into a live concert!

Michael Jackson - The Phenomenon: You will always be remembered through your music...Goodbye, if your really gone!


Book review: P.S I love you

My rating: 4.5 / 5
Author: Cecelia Ahern
Country: Dublin, Ireland

I loved this book just as much as I hated it. I was amazed to know that this was the debut novel of Cecelia Ahern. I totally loved this for it was a simple yet beautifully told story. I totally hated it for it made me cry every single page….trust me, every single page!!

This is the story of Holly and Gerry, a happy-go-lucky couple. Life is filled with joy, wonderful friends and a supporting family. All wells until the day Gerry dies of a tumour and its all hell for Holly. She loses her childhood sweetheart, a best friend and a wonderful husband all together with Gerry gone! Her life is miserable and she doesn’t know how to move on without him. Touching!

When Cecelia describes all the things Holly does to keep Gerry’s memories alive, even a handful of tissues wouldn’t suffice. It makes you want to close the book, stop your thoughts, cry for a while and then continue again….

Holly shuts herself from everyone until the day she receives a bundle of 10 letters marked for each month. The letters are from Gerry who wrote them while he was alive. These letters become Holly’s life and gets her to move on without Gerry, yet, feeling his presence all the time.Gerry instructs her to open each letter on the first day of every month. Each letter has a message for Holly and what she needs to do for that month. It ranges from her going shopping for a bedside lamp, buying herself a beautiful dress to taking part in a Karaoke contest to a paid holiday with her best friends in Spain. At the end of each note, Gerry signs off…..P.S I love you

While most of her family and friends start to worry how Holly would cope after the 10th month when there are no more letters, Gerry’s notes actually get Holly to sail through the depression and start to lead a normal life again…..without him!

Well, I had to face so many hurdles to get past this book. Firstly, my husband and my dad were totally against me reading this as they felt I was unnecessarily inflicting misery on myself. I’m glad that I managed to find the book which my husband so thoughtfully hid :)

On hindsight, the book actually has made me a stronger person. I cried and cried. Yes. But then, I realised that life could be short yet beautiful…make the best of each day as it comes! Forget the old tiffs, always keep smiling, reconnect with lost friends, treasure the dear and near ones you have!! Have goals in life as Gerry writes in one of his notes – You need to reach for the moon, if you lose, you’ll atleast be among the stars.
Yet, never forget to enjoy life, age no bar!!

The language is simple, the story extremely realistic and very mushy…what more could girls ask for ;)

I did not give this book a full rating as there are places where the story drags a bit but then, I think it was a great concept and well told by a debutant.

I would recommend this if you have previously enjoyed Erich Sehgal’s Love Story, the TV series Sex and the City or any other romantic genre.


Book review: The White Tiger

Author: Aravind Adiga
My rating: 5/5

I am not so kind hearted to give a full score for pretty much every movie I see or every book I read. But then, I cant help it if only the best seems to come my way ;-)

What can I say about this book. Its disturbingly true and a succinctly accurate portrayal of certain parts of India. Mind you, I stress upon the word “certain”. I'm definitely not the types who would push the garbage into the backyard and make things look all hunky dory. Yes, I can understand and to a certain degree agree to the disturbing thoughts of Munna aka Balram Halwai aka Ashok Sharma!!....”certain”

What I liked about the book ? The narration, the simple language used, the character presentation and above all the emotions that it generates in you as you read along!

I'm not sure if I really need to write about the plot here. With Adiga winning the Booker prize and the book becoming an instant hit, I'm sure most of you would know what the story line is all about. But still, for those people who haven't read it ...a jist.

The narration is through the eyes of the main protagonist – Munna all through the book. He is a small town boy, living in Laxmangarh somewhere close to Gaya, the place where Buddha happened to get enlightenment. This is definitely irony. Or was it on purpose that the author chose to make the character live here ??

Munna is christened Balram and his age deemed 18 by the inspection officer just so he is made eligible to vote. Not that he ever was able to. He describes in one place that even though his vote was cast at every election, he hadn't seen how the voting booth actually looked inside!! Thanks to booth capturing that is rampant in certain parts of India. I'm glad that voting in Bangalore is still smooth and democracy prevails. Thats why Im still stressing the word “certain” again. So, yeah, thats how Munna gets his name Balram.

The story is simplistic and told by Balram in a letter to the Premier of China. He describes slavery in different forms meted out by different kinds of people in different ways. Balram goes through all this; first as a helper in a tiny tea shop, then as a secondary driver, then as the main driver. His life moves from being a driver to finally becoming an entrepreneur. His life story told over seven nights of letter writing....with the chandelier for company.

He goes from being an obedient driver through to becoming a murderer. He gets corrupted, does things that he wasn't supposed to do leading to things he shouldn't do and finally to what no one should do! He does it all, escapes from being caught inspite of having committed a crime and what the heck, sets up his own business, prospers and settles well down in Bangalore city under the name of Ashok Sharma.

Strangely, I neither felt pity nor anger nor hatred towards the character. Was that again what Adiga wanted to convey...is this something so natural for a person to become under such circumstances ??

There has been similarity drawn to Slumdog by many. Yes, perhaps because both got world recognition by depicting poorer India. But somehow, more than the movie, this book had a stronger effect on me. In the sense, though I loved the book, I feel it very necessary to say these things – India is the world's largest democracy, India is shining in science and technology, we still do have the IT edge, we can give any country a run for their money, we won a gold medal this Olympics, our films can compete with world class cinema, there is no dearth of talent and intelligence, a few of Indian origin are actually part of the Obama team, an Indian Mittal is still one of the richest persons in the UK and only we have the power to “buy” players from different countries to play for teams named after Indian cities!! Beat that!!

I really did want to say the above especially for the non Indian readers primarily because a book can so vividly explain situations and yet leave a lot to imagination. As a book lover, I feel one goes through more emotions reading than one can feel from watching a movie for 2 hours.

Go enjoy it with an open mind and remember its the story of “a” person Balram....