Friday, July 11, 2014

Movie Review - Humpty Sharma ki Dulhania


You know you have loved a movie when even after 1 hour of watching it you are singing its songs. Samjhaawan is certainly one of the most beautiful songs of recent times and the movie Humpty Sharma ki Dulhania is an excellent film to be featuring it.

The movie is set in Delhi and Ambala. Humpty/Rakesh Sharma(Varun Dhawan) is a happy-go-lucky, Casanova who is, being a hindi film hero, an emotional fool and extremely kind-hearted.  He meets Ambala girl Kavya Singh (Alia Bhatt) who comes to Delhi to shop for her upcoming wedding. They become friends and love follows. That’s the first half of the movie which has a lot of resemblance to Dilwale Dulhaniya le Jayenge. And done very well at that.

The second half doesn’t go the DDLJ way. Although I loved every bit of it, I was in a way relieved that it was different. I’m not going to tell what happens next or who does what because that is for you to go and watch. Humpty has two friends – Shonty and Poplu. Yes – Shonty and Poplu. For me, Poplu (Sahil Vaid) was the star of the movie. His one-liners throughout the 2 hours and some 20 minutes entertained the audience the most. They had a lot of role in making the second half fast paced and better than the first.

A special mention goes to Kavya’s father, Mr. Singh (Ashutosh Rana), who plays the role of a protective yet practical father. The moments between him and Humpty are an absolute delight to watch. Siddharth Shukla as Angad was, umm, good. Although I feel that he will have to work hard at shedding his television image. 

The chemistry between Alia and Varun is excellent. I was glad that Alia’s role was not stereotyped in anyway. She’s very real - a bubbly, chirpy, ‘modern’ girl with strong principles. Needless to say, she's my favorite actress now!

I thought the songs could have been better. There were 2-3 very filmy scenes that could have been avoided. But then that’s allowed. Overall, HSKD is a very Bollywood kind of film with funny and warm scenes that keep you glued. I thought it had masala, melodrama, humour, romance - everything perfectly in place for people like me who love romcoms. It cannot surpass Dilwale Dulhaniya le Jayenge, but it certainly did come close. I’ll give it 4 out of 5 stars for the whole feel good factor. Come what may, watch it and have a great weekend!

P.S. I'm writing a movie review after the longest time. Bollywood has been disappointing me. Barring Queen and Highway, I have not liked anything in the last year. HSKD was quite a relief.

Sunday, July 6, 2014

The Scent of Bliss



We wandered happily in a picturesque meadow
Treading the wooden bridges over the water
A waterfall splashed creating an echo
A Buddha, some candles - all standing in a perfect order.
Surrounding the area was this scent of Bliss
I looked up and saw numerous trees of Eucalyptus.

Dancing magnolias welcome you inside
Koi fish in the pond show you their style
Your senses are overpowered, you cannot help but abide
You suddenly feel alive, you suddenly feel agile.
You wish to breathe and breathe and never stop
The crisp fragrance that you inhale, I have never found it in any shop.

This Japanese Tea Garden in the Golden Gate Park, San Francisco
Is a little bit of heaven on Earth
The landscaping, the meditative state, the whole show
Makes your worries melt, brings an unusual mirth.
But one thing that you are constantly drawn to is a comforting perfume
You keep hunting for that one thing that is taking away your gloom.


Maybe it was the smell of numerous flowering shrubs standing in a line
It could have been the bonsai or simply the lush green grass.
Was it the redwood? Or, was it the pine?
My senses didn’t want to think and so I gave it a pass.
I just inhaled, inhaled this perfume of Bliss
I looked up again, oh yes; it had to be the Eucalyptus.



The hidden surprises there make you want to carry on
The wisteria and azalea inspire the poet in you
All your senses are awakened, you feel like a mere pawn  The crisp air, the fresh trees, they all make you feel so new.
The Zen garden encourages you to give
But it’s the smell, the fragrance of Eucalyptus that makes you want to live.


This was a year ago
But the perfume is still fresh in my mind
Whenever I’m in a pensive mood and my mind wanders to and fro
I think of that garden to move away from the grind.
And then my heart feels a sense of Bliss
And somehow smells that Eucalyptus.










I was reminded of my trip to the Japanese Tea Gardens in Golden Gate Park, San Francisco last year when I came across this contest on Indiblogger. The contest asks Bloggers to write about their evocative travel experience to help Godrej aer create the first crowd-inspired fragrance.
This was indeed a divine experience and I just loved sharing it like this!

Friday, July 4, 2014

A Beautiful Mind



When I went for a vacation sometime back, I was surprised to see a notification on my screen. It said that my flight was delayed by 2 hours just before I was leaving for the airport to board a flight for my next destination. So far I had not installed an application that gave me information about airlines. Where did this come from?

And then I realised that I had my air tickets in my inbox. My android based phone collected data from there and scanned through some technology that I don’t get and let me know. What was more shocking to my technologically-challenged brain was that it was also telling me the time and weather in the city I was heading into! I was also being wished a lovely trip. Since the flight was delayed, this seemed more like a sarcastic comment by a jealous relative. Anyway, I digress.

Though all this was extremely useful, I was totally freaked out. Someone out there was spying on me. Did they have microphones installed in my bedroom too so that they can gauge my needs and advertise accordingly? What if a satellite from up above was looking at me and judging my every move? God, would then, have a very tough competition!

At the airport, my mind was still wandering into unknown zones. I had two hours to kill after all. I tapped on the camera and focused on a man sitting 20 seats away from me who seemed like he lived in a burger joint and always finished the leftovers. Suddenly my phone started typing some random stuff on its own. Will they let me take the front seat? I need more leg room. I wish that girl sits next to me. Fries, the chilli ones, yeah, that’s what I need right now.

I was taken aback. So much so, that the phone fell flat on my lap. Oh yes, 3 broken screens in 2 years had awarded me a knack to topple a phone yet manage to land it on my lap. When I picked it up, the text was gone and good wishes for my flight stared back at me.

Another technological drama, I thought to myself. Could be a virus trying to make fun of a girl's talent at handling gadgets. I opened the social networking application and thought of checking-in. After all, my friends should know my life was rocking since I get to travel so much.

I thought of attaching a picture of the magnificent airport as well and so I opened my camera again; this time focusing on a large crowd of young college-goers who were dressed to kill. How this picture will make my friends jealous I did not know. Yet it seemed worth a try.

The text started appearing again. Katie is so pretty. I’m going to win her over this time around. Oh a group picture. I should go stand next to her to show her how good we look together.
 
Unbelievable. My mobile was behaving like a slick man laughing at my ability to handle a simple phone. I tried to focus elsewhere. It picked a new language which I didn’t understand. Chin min show, ki pi to. La min chi go in pito. My new Asus Zenphone 5 is incredible.

I wanted to show my phone the middle finger. Just then I realised I was focusing on a Chinese guy. What was this that my phone was trying to tell me? Maybe Mars had taken over our planet and created a bug. I asked my husband who was sitting next to me to give me his phone. I opened the camera and focused on Chin min show. Nothing.

Thank God, Mars had not taken over and aliens were still flying unidentifiable items one of which I was still waiting to come across.

I gave my restless hubby his phone back because, well, he can live without breathing, but phone, not at all. I thought I would check-in without the picture. But my mind kept wandering and I opened the camera again.
This time I focussed it on my husband who was sitting next to me staring at the floor. The screen went blank. After a minute, the longest minute of my life, something appeared - Food, no, Sleep. 

“Baby, you want a sandwich? I’m going to eat something and take a nap. This flight is taking ages to arrive. Uh, are you clicking me? ” He asked.

I was stunned. “Thought recognition.” I blurted out.

“What? Do you need a sandwich or no?”

I struggled to form words through my mouth. I grabbed my phone harder and nodded my head left and right all the while staring at my screen without blinking.

“Don’t take my picture. Take your selfies and be content with it.”

“Selfie. Yes, good idea.”

I turned on my front camera and tried to take a selfie. No text. I opened the rear camera again and focused on myself. I turned it back to look at its screen.

Can it read my thoughts? Is this for real?

Shit. This was indeed thought recognition. I could read what others were thinking. My phone had gotten some sort of super power and was helping me see what others can't see and do what others can't do! Only me and my phone’s camera ! Incredible.

I focused on this American girl who had been observing me for a while. Should I go ask this girl where she got those ear-rings from? Wonder if she’ll be generous enough to give them to me when I compliment her. But first, let me take a selfie. 

Oh, girls!

I walked past her and pretended that the seat next to her would be more comfortable for me. When I sat down she said hi. I replied back. As expected she started a conversation with me that eventually led to my ear-rings.

“You like these? Well, they are from India. Here take them, I’ll go back and buy another pair.”

She hesitated. But then took them. I smiled back and told her that I needed to go back to my husband. We hugged and parted. I am sure if I focused the camera on her she would be blessing me.

So this was good. I could become the kind stranger I always wanted to be and give what people really needed instead of random things. If the focus was on me and if the camera had a sense of humour as well, it would write in bold ‘Mother Teresa’.

The man sitting across me was deep in thought. From his boss to his wife, according to him everyone hated him. I grabbed a cola and went to sit next to him. 

“That’s a nice shirt you are wearing.” I said, trying hard not to appear flirtatious. Sometimes I had a tendency to forget that I was married!

“Thanks.”

I started a random conversation and praised everything he said he was doing in life. His smiles came back. Just when I thought he would go down on his knees and propose to me for being an absolute darling, I told him my husband was waiting and I needed to go. 

He nodded and said it was nice to meet me. Nice! No wonder his wife and boss were upset with him - he clearly didn't know how to be grateful. Maybe I needed to know his thoughts right about now!

So I opened the camera again but before I could focus on him, I read the thoughts of a man sitting close to him. The bomb is well in place. It should go boom in about 20 minutes. Bless me and my family God.


Noo..


“You broke your phone again?” the husband sounded infuriated picking up my phone from the floor.

“What?” I asked waking up with a jerk.

“You screamed a big no and threw your phone. What have you been dreaming? C’mon, we need to line up for boarding. Let’s see if this can ever be fixed.”

My hand immediately went to my ears – the ear-rings were there. They are precious, I could never give them to anyone! Dream? - of course it was a dream. Look what confusing technology did to my senses! Thought recognition was good for a bit. But would I want to know everything, always? 

Sometimes. Maybe. Who could say no to a super power!

“You have a beautiful mind, honey – clear and innocent.” I said to my husband and took his hand in mine. Technology was playing games with my brain. I needed to take my mind off it and romance was clearly the way to go.

Also, I had to woo him to buy me a new phone now - my fourth in two years! Perhaps a stronger one this time. Which was the one Chin min show had!? It definitely looked incredible.



This post is written for a contest topic - Give your phone a super power and tell us how it would help you see what others can't see and do what others can't do - hosted on Indiblogger for Asus.  

Taiwanese manufacturer, Asus, is all set to introduce its range of smartphones in India on 9th July 2014. The three smartphones that are expected to be launched are - Zenfone 4, Zenfone 5 and Zenfone 6 (with 4,5,6 inches display screen respectively) coated with a strong Corning Gorilla Glass 3 protection and run on Android 4.3 Jelly Bean OS. These smartphones are expected to be in the range of Rs. 10,000 to Rs. 20,000, and would be available in various colors. 

The Zenphone 5 is powered by Intel Atom Multi-core Z2580 chip processor which clocks at 1.6 GHz , also has intel hyper-threading technology to boost the performance. There is a 2GB of RAM built into it, and the internal storage has 8 GB of storage (expandable upto 64 GB via microSD). It has 8 mega-pixel shooter at rear with LED flash.

Click on the ad to see what they can do what others can't! Zen looks incredible indeed! Here is the Asus Youtube link if you are unable to see the video on this site.


Thursday, July 3, 2014

End




Her fingers tremble
Tremble as she wipes the dust off the knob
Opens the lock with her key
Staring at the staircase with melancholy.

It is here she spent
Spent the best years of her life
Running up and down playing with Ma
Learning new songs, trying Salsa.

She walks inside and looks
Looks into the barren rooms
A memory makes her smile
She touches the wall and waits awhile.

Why is it hard
Hard to let go
The new owners will be here by noon
It won’t be hers, it will be theirs soon.

They’ll make memories
Memories which were hers once
Of dancing in the Kitchen, laughing like a retard
Sneaking a kiss with her first in the backyard.

Will they keep it better
Better than her family?
Will they hang murals, paint the wall blue
Will they plant roses and make some bonsai too?

She thought about the days
Days when the house was happy to be their home
She wishes for its happiness and lets out a tear
Then prays for its growth for it is still very dear.

She reluctantly turns her back
Absorbs the jealousy
Best things, possibly, come to an end
Move on, make room for new or, at least pretend.

Monday, June 30, 2014

When I'm feeling blah



Things have been weird lately. I am unable to write. I read blogs and I don’t feel like commenting. Even when I do, they are such half-hearted comments that I make spelling and grammatical errors.

I don’t know what it is. It maybe my tensed state of mind. Some tests didn’t come out well and I was brooding over them for a couple of days. But life goes on and we need to take everything that comes to us.
In times like this, it is very hard to stay positive. We will be going for a vacation soon. Even that is not getting me excited. In fact I am worried that it would be hard for me to manage all the walking and climbing. Health, really, is wealth..

In other news, we’ve been driving around town like crazy. In 20 days we’ve driven some 1400 kms in this smallest country that we call home. Luck has been by our side as well – one day we went to a Lebanese restaurant to have coffee. There were some 100 people. The football match was about to start. We were sleepy and so we thought we should leave. We were just about to go when they announced they will have a lucky draw. Now we’ve been so keen in participating in these that we thought we should stay and try our luck. Well, the first number they called out was ours and we won 6 cans of coke and a tee! Haha! Also, we went there again after 3 days. They had a lucky draw again. We won foldable sunglasses. I had such a laugh!

I know we are blessed in so many ways. I know small setbacks are just ways to remind us that we need to be careful. I know my problems are miniscule in this big universe of several billion problems. I know I should not be cribbing.

But well, this is one of those days and I am allowed to let it all out. I might not blog for sometime because I don’t think sad write-ups should be posted. Or, I might just post a lot because when I crib here, things suddenly start to look good.

Wish me luck in areas where I really need it. Right now I need to stay strong and positive.. yes.. wish me luck.