Monday, July 19, 2010

Ninnu Kori

After "Agninakshatram", "Mohanam" raaga gained immense popularity on account of "Ninnu Kori". I will not get into the details the how, what and where of raaga - simply because Uttara has done such a fabulous job - and any of my explanations would pale in comparison.

Listen to Ninnu Kori from U Srinivas of the Mandolin fame. This one is my personal favourite when it comes to rendition of Mohanam. (You must have either Real Player or Windows Media Player to listen to this - it will pop up in a new window.)

Here's the song from the movie.


... and last but not least Raag Bhupali the equivalent of Mohanam.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Quaint Words

Huzoor
Ever since I left India I haven't heard this word. Actually I doubt it's used in everyday conversation coz as far as I know its an ├╝ber polite way of saying "Mister" and a Urdu speaking acquaintance told me that it means "My Lord". However, I do fondly remember the "Arey Huzoor - Wah Taj boliyae!"




absquatulate
I guess this word would appear only in Spelling Bees. It means to abscond or depart suddenly. However, this long winded convoluted word just doesn't give that impression does it?

quotidian
Would you say to someone - "Now describe your quotidian routine?" -Ah! I thought not. This one apparently means "Of or occurring every day; daily."

Now prepare to read this sentence and gag... (don't say you weren't warned!)

"Arey Huzoor - why do you absquatulate at 3 on a quotidian basis?"

Now for the last one:

maragatham
This one means emerald in Tamil. For the longest time ever we just referred to a friend of my mom's as "aunty". Then we found out her name was Maragatham and compared to the Saroja, Puspha, Gayatri and even Thangam (meaning gold) - the Maragatham stood out as something unusual.

What quaint words did you come across today?

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

These are a few of my favourite...


Movies.




Witness (1985)


The first thing that hits you is the music – haunting and evocative and just so right. Even if the visuals were not before you – you can just about imagine the breeze rippling though the fields and watch the quaint beauty of the Lancaster countryside slowly unfold. The violent deaths in the movie are presented in such a matter-of-fact manner – that it just feels natural - not gory and shocking. What a poignant love story – even though Ford and McGillis never get together – there is surprisingly a “happily ever after” feel to it.



DDLJ
Maybe SRK can’t act – but he emanates such warmth and charm that more than makes up for his hamming. Then, there’s over the top Amrish Puri – he never could let go of the Mugambo look – but I really liked his feeding the pigeons both in gloomy London and in the golden fields of Punjab. The songs - most are on my all time favs too – and I loved the choreography. I simply couldn’t understand how the man who made such an endearing movie could come up with an audacious “Rab Ne Bana De Jodi” - so mediocre – not to mention the lame Clark Kent-Superman plot!



Salangai Oli
That man can bend his body – Kamal’s dancing is awesome. I liked the way Sarath Babu wears a traditional dhoti throughout the movie and is so comfortable in it. I doubt anyone will ever forget the “Pancha Bhootam” scene. Other memorable scenes include his mother’s death and his protecting Jayapradha’s “bindi” from rain. I did like the cheesy “The End” – “There is no End to Art” too! What a movie!



Kate and Leopold

And this is on the list …because of my fascination with time travel. Otherwise come to think of it – it’s very ordinary. But Hugh Jackman can act a period role to perfection – I would love to see him as Darcy.

Pride and Prejudice
Talking of Darcy, I first watched the BBC production with Colin Firth and Jennifer Ehle – it was well-made and then along came Keira Knightley. Her portrayal of Lizzie is stunning – she makes Jennifer Ehle look old and boring. The scene where Darcy proposes in the rain was a nice bit of screenplay. The new Pemberly was much better than the BBC one – the BBC one looked like a deserted museum than a stately house. I preferred BBC’s Catherine De Brough to Judi Dench though. Talking of Judi Dench – Jane from the BBC production has acted as Lady Harriet in “Wives and Daughters” where she spots a most unbecoming Jude Dench like hairstyle.

Mounaraagam

Here too, I really can not understand how a man who made a film that elicited such superb understated performances from Mohan and Revathi could go and make a movie like “Guru” and "Ravan"! The house in Delhi was utterly charming with elegant interiors. One had gotten so used to seeing Mohan in his soppy singer roles – it was totally refreshing to see him in a non-stereotype role. You can see extensions of this movie’s theme in “Roja” and “Alai Payuthae”.

The Secret of My Success

Our offspring will probably never get the concept of a mail-room and printed memos. I loved the, ”You don’t consort with the suits.”