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Archive for the ‘The Magic of Movies!’ Category

My Views On Bollywood

By

Sharada Iyer

There is not a single person among his fans and co-stars who has escaped the charm of Shashi Kapoor’s incredible good-looks! It was an integral part of his affable personality which drew the audience towards him and made him a hugely popular star especially a ‘romantic’ star of the sixties and seventies. His easy-going genial and charming real-life personality probably rubbed off on all his on-screen characters making them immensely likeable and endearing.

shashi-kapoorBut his good looks sometimes overpowered the extremely talented actor hidden behind the charming face. He remained a rare actor who straddled the worlds of theatre, popular Hindi cinema, art films as well as English films effortlessly and quietly without creating much brouhaha. He never liked to boast about his achievements for they stemmed from his sheer love for acting.

THEATRE MAN

He started his career as a theatre actor learning the ropes from…

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There are talented actors in Bollywood who never make it to the top league. But the impression they leave behind even as a supporting actor lasts long.

In this blog, the erudite author pays a fitting tribute to one such actor: Nazima.

My Views On Bollywood

By

Sharada Iyer

Cine-lovers who are familiar with the cinema of the late-sixties and early-seventies would easily recollect her sweet and innocent face with those lovely big expressive eyes and the charming smile which characterized this talented actress. She had gained popularity as the quintessential ‘sister’ of the hero or the heroine and had a pleasing screen presence.

n9I have seen quite a few movies of Nazima and used to find her demeanour very appealing. But around the mid-seventies she just disappeared from the scene. I had somehow always thought she had got married and settled somewhere in a foreign country and never came back to the glitz and glamour of the film industry.

It is only recently while browsing some YouTube videos, I came across this shocking piece of news that Nazima had succumbed to cancer and passed away in 1975 itself at the young age of twenty-seven!!!

This…

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Angelina Jolie had faced it. Gwyneth Paltrow has had to bear it. Kate Winslet has hinted at it. Ashley Judd has admitted to it. Many others have now joined the crusade against Harvey Weinstein who had preyed on them. A police investigation has just started gathering steam.

Leading ladies from Hollywood have finally shown the courage to stand up and spill the beans. Irrespective of the time that has elapsed, it is praiseworthy. It encourages many other silent sufferers amongst the tribe of delicately nurtured to openly name and shame their oppressors.

Would some of our Bollywood divas also take a cue and come out with a ‘MeToo’ revelation? Some of them have charted their own paths in the entertainment business and have built their own brand equity. Sure enough, they can help many other struggling artists and starlets to stand up to amorous advances being made by their possible benefactors?

So far, Konkona Sen Sharma, Rahika Apte and few others have come out in support of the drive. But one looks forward to a far more widespread support.

What they also need to do is to repudiate the views of actor Mayim Bialik who has suggested in a column that dressing conservatively and looking ‘unglamorous’ often helps skirt amorous advances. This is, yet again, placing the blame at the doorstep of the victim.

The Casting Couch

The existence of this phenomenon has been Bollywood’s worst kept secrets. By going public with the acts of sexual predators, perhaps some degree of self-regulation may come about, thereby helping the vulnerable to avoid getting exploited.

Once in a blue moon, Bollywood has, through some of its own offerings, confessed to the presence of this scourge. Movies like Fashion (Madhur Bhandarkar, 2008) and Luck by Chance (Zoya Akhtar, 2009) had clear references to the sordid practice.

Hormones moderated by Chivalry?

Some of the members of the so-called sterner sex would also do well to introspect and mend their ways. The least they can do is to undergo a crash course at the Bertie Wooster Institute of Chivalry.

 

(Ref: https://www.vanityfair.com/hollywood/2017/10/harvey-weinstein-accusers-sexual-harassment-assault-rose-mcgowan-ashley-judd-gwyneth-paltrow)

(Related Posts:

https://ashokbhatia.wordpress.com/2017/05/12/female-power

https://ashokbhatia.wordpress.com/2013/06/21/romancing-the-boss-in-reel-life

https://ashokbhatia.wordpress.com/2013/06/18/hormones-vs-hierarchies

https://ashokbhatia.wordpress.com/2014/08/01/to-all-ye-ogling-males)

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Those who appreciate the fine nuances of classical music would surely relish this blog post!

(Related Post: https://ashokbhatia.wordpress.com/2016/09/28/the-use-of-raag-shivaranjani-in-hindi-film-songs)

My Views On Bollywood

By

Sharada Iyer

The repertoire of our century-old Hindi film music boasts of a wide range of songs based on a variety of classical Hindustani ragas. There is no denying that the reach of films and film music in our country is far beyond any other form of music. Therefore instead of composing these songs in a typical classical style which may appeal only to a select audience, our music directors have time and again proved their mettle to draw inspiration from our vast legacy of classical music and modify it to suit the mood and setting of the visual medium of cinema.  

Noted music critic and author Raju Bharatan writes a valid point in his book ‘A Journey Down Melody Lane’ “Your classicism is of value only if you know how to fine-tune it to the peculiar visual needs of instant cinema. In the end…

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ashokbhatia

The departure of the rainy season leaves us with a weather which is hot and humid. The sky is a clean blue. The sun tends to get merciless yet again but is unable to catch up with the ferocity it displays during summers. Rivers and lakes are full to the brim, but are relatively quieter.

In ‘Ritusamhara’, Kalidasa captures this season as evocatively as he does all others. All the natural features of autumn get compared to either some activity or some ornament of the delicately nurtured. Immaculate moonshine is often said to be veiled by clouds. Twinkling stars get alluded to as jewellery of the autumnal night. Affairs of the heart invariably take centre stage.

Bollywood does not refrain from showing us the beauty of this season in all its glory while the hero and the heroine profess their love for each other. But there is a…

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ashokbhatia

After a long spell of a harsh summer, the monsoon ushers in a season of joy and relief. The aroma of the scorched earth touched by the first torrent of rains is intoxicating. Birds and beasts are equally delighted. The whole nature changes its texture.

This is indeed the season where Bollywood outdoes itself. Farmers rejoice. Those who are lonely go about dancing in the rain, hoping that a beloved would be discovered soon enough. Lissome heroines prance about in their fully drenched attires, performing dance steps which could put an Olympic gymnast to shame. When it gets pitch dark, lightning helps young ladies to locate their lovers.

Courtship reaches a higher level of intensity. Hormones run amok. Sounds of thunder make the heroine cling closer to the hero. Those who have lost their beloveds to the harsh workings of Fate fondly recollect their lady-love in this season. Perched on…

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Dustedoff

Sometime back, blog reader Anup remarked that some songs had a major singer not really doing much singing. Duets, he pointed out, where one singer does almost all the singing, while the other one just does a supportive ‘la-la-la-la’, or something along those lines. Anup suggested I compile a song list of duets like that. Of what I call ‘technically duets’: not songs in which both singers play an equal part in making the song what it is, but in which the ratio is somewhat skewed.

Then, only about a week after Anup made this suggestion, yet another blog reader, Bhagwan Thavrani, sent me an e-mail with pretty much the same suggestion. He was rather more precise: songs in which one singer only hummed, while the other did the singing.

Two readers, both requesting songs of the same basic type? I decided I had to take up the…

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