Day 8: 3 Movies

Movies. What can I say. Never been a huge fan. Until that is, I met my husband. I had not met a man more a fan of movies than my husband until then. Before marriage, I used to stay with a friend of mine as roommates. Of course, she had been here in MN, long enough to have formed her own group of friends by then. So the first two weeks I was here, I used to hang out with my husband (then my friend) and his roommates and watch 2 movies a day. Yep, thats what they used to do after coming home from work. Dinner prepared by someone else was a bonus ! 🙂

I remember, as kids, I did not particularly enjoy watching too many movies on TV. I do have fond memories of movies like Maine Pyar Kiya or Mr. India which when aired on TV, we would record those using our VCR and then play them multiple times. Similarly, in Chennai, my cousins recorded a movie called Guna. Every summer, we would visit and the vacation would definitely include one screening of Guna. In a few years, I had memorized all the scenes and dialogues. If only remembering history were so simple !

The only movies I watched when I was young was those once-in-a-while visits to the theatre – watched Heena, Jurassic Park and some others. When I was in my teens, I fell more in love with the lovey dovey emotional movies and even those emotional serials, I will shamelessly say. So I wouldn’t particular have movies in my list which have memories associated with it, this one’s going to be more the impact the movie has had on me. Even without that, there are 100s of movies if not more, that I have watched, so picking 3 was difficult. So, I am going to list one favourite movie in each of of my 3 most used languages. Needless to say, I am also going to cheat a little and list an additional one in each category 🙂 Here’s my top 3, ahem (6) !

1. Anjali: A movie which never fails to bring me to tears every single time I watch it. I have watched it n number of times, thinking that one day I will stop crying towards the end of the movie when Anjali dies, but every single time I will end up in tears. Yet, it never stopped me from wanting to watch it again. A beautiful heartfelt movie on relationships, being accepted, accepting and the unbreakable bonds in a family. I fell in love with the characters, every single one of them. The father played by Raghuvaran, the mother played by Revathi and all 3 kids especially baby Anjali. No one could have portrayed those characters better than these folks.

2. Roja: A movie that had everything in it. Hope, yearning, an endless positive struggle, a fight for your rights, patriotism everything. The nuances of a relationship were so beautifully outlined against a patriotic backdrop. I feel like I have visited Kashmir and the beautiful south through this movie. The main leads were two basically unknown people, but yet they managed to play their roles with such conviction, add to it A.R. Rahman’s music – one of those first movies of Rahman where he used to create magic with music, before composing music for movies like Slumdog and having people think that’s his best.

1. Swades: I never imagined this would be my #1 movie for the one reason that I actually detest Shahrukh Khan. I think he’s fabulous as a showman but sucks as an actor. Usually, his movies are a confab of overacting and useless chuckles, stupid jokes and absolutely rubbish dances. But Ashutosh Gowarikar managed to bring out the true serious actor in him and hence made the movie watchable. Chak De was a close second. A very down to earth concept, no known actors except for Shahrukh, a simple place in India, a pretty low budget considering – yet a very powerful inspiring movie. When I first watched this movie, I was with a group of friends, and when we came out of the theatre, we were all silent, speechless. Not a single word was exchanged, every one of us was in our own thoughts. I especially liked how the director managed to make everything very realistic. Had it been any other director, it would have ended with Shahrukh staying back for the heroine and easily forgetting his work and responsibilities at NASA. But Ashutosh gave it a logical end, something that we could relate to. A movie which makes you yearn for your earth even when you’re miles away. Not that I dont otherwise, but this one emphasises the feeling even more !

2. Dil Chahta Hain: My friends and I used to have contests on who knew this movie more in and out than the other ! We would quiz each other on some of the intricacies of the movie, I guess it brings me back to memories 🙂 A very coming of age movie on friendships, the strains of relationships, expectations from society and how you can still stay in touch and be the best of friends even if you haven’t met in years. I have some friends like those, who I dont really get to talk to very often but I meet them after years and we talk like nothing’s changed ! I feel so lucky and blessed to have such friends ! Loved Amir Khan in this, he was my favourite actor until the day he suggested gifting roses in a Gandhigiri fashion to the Taj shooters. I have since given up on this guy !

1. Finding Nemo: My first animation movie. Opened me up to a whole new world. Fell in love with animation movies after that ! Its so sweet the way these movies, basically cartoon characters spin up such fantastic tales each with a moral in them. If the first animation had been a fiasco I would have missed some of the nice movies which I do think one should most definitely watch. My recommendations: Cars, Up, Shrek series, the Toy Story (its unbelievable how you can make a movie on feelings of toys, makes you want to fall in love with your toys, of course I always loved my toys !), Ice Age series (Peaches! was so funny), Kung Fu Panda to name a few.

2. The Boy in the Striped Pajamas: This movie had an effect on me similar to the book “Not Without My Daughter”. The images and the story stayed with me for a very long time after I had watched it and I remember walking around telling everyone I met to watch this movie. Built on the base of the German-Jew war and the holocaust, a heart touching tale through the eyes of two 8-year old kids. Most movies around the Holocaust end up as documentaries, which I have not watched much of, I must admit, but this is one movie which really drives the message home. A very high impact movie. Watch it if you haven’t !

I would love to hear your views!