Monday, June 15, 2015


Cinema is a very important part of my life. It is always there for me, it is there for me when I am happy, when I am sad, when I am with people, when I am alone. It entertains me and makes me forget how good/bad the life is; in-short, it is something that makes me happy. My love for movies started at a very early stage. I must be in 1st or 2nd standard when I started watching movies. For several years, after returning home from school, I would sit in-front of my TV and would watch Zee Cinema and Cartoon Network. Those were the days when there was no access to Hollywood and all we had was Zee Cinema. I must have watched almost all the Hindi movies that has been produced since 60s. In the late 90s I did get some fair dosage of Hollywood with movies like Titanic, Godzilla etc. It was only when I joined college did I got exposed to Hollywood on a much bigger scale. Over the years, apart from Hollywood, I have explored movies of multiple genre from various movie industries of Korea, France, China, Japan along with regional movie industries such as Tamil, Telugu and Malayam.

So why all of a sudden am I writing about movies? This is because I just have had a good weekend where I have watched 3 movies back-to-back and each movie is a class in itself. 
These 3 movies are: Wreck-It Ralph, Whiplash an Unbroken.

Wreck-It Ralph: It's a cartoon film (I'd prefer calling it a cartoon film rather than an animation movie. I don't get that feel when I say "animation movie"). We have been playing video games ever since we were kids. But have we ever imagined that the characters in video games may have a life of their own? This movie is the story of one such video game character. He is the "bad-guy" in his game and is sick of the way he is treated and wants all the preferential treatments including a medal which is given to the "good-guy" of his game. He is told that he needs to win a medal to get such treatment. Rest of the movie is his journey of winning a medal and becoming a "good-guy" so that he can get some respect in his own game. The best dialogue of the movie has to be when Ralph says: "Turns out I don't need a medal to tell me I'm a good guy. Because if that little kid likes me how bad can I be? " Can there be a good in every bad and bad in every good?

Whiplash: Andrew Neiman is a young talented jazz drummer. He wants to become the best drummer and in order to pursue his dreams, he joins Shaffer Conservatory of Music which is one of the best music schools in the United states. He somehow manages to join the band of Terence Fletcher. Fletcher's band represents the school and playing in his band means getting one-step closer to achieving the long cherished dream. But Fletcher thrives on fear of his students and will settle at nothing but the best. His ways of teaching are not accepted by many and causes emotional stress and anxiety issues amongst his students. The movie is about how Andrew overcomes all the challenges that life throws at him which includes surviving an accident and beating Terence Fletcher in his own game. The best dialogue has to be towards the end when Neiman tells Fletcher: "I will cue you" and then he goes on living his dream on the stage.
This movie makes me wonder how far one can go to achieve their dream, to achieve what they really want in life. This movie also reminded me of my own toy drum set which I used to have during my school days. This movie made me listen to some nice jazz music on youtube.

Unbroken: I have always admired Angelina Jolie for various reasons. I never knew she is a producer and a director as well. I was pleasantly surprised to know that this movie is produced and directed by her. This is a true story of Louis Zamperini. Had never heard his name before and will never forget it now. He is an Olympic athlete who during WW2 survives a plane crash only to spend the next 47 days on a raft and then being caught by Japanese navy and being send to prisoner-of-war camp. In the camp he meets a sadistic Japanese officer who's tells them: You all are enemies of Japan and will be treated accordingly. He singles out Louis and beats him quite often. He beats him almost every-time he is in the frame with him. The man: Louis Zamperini is literally unbroken. Nothing could break him and his will to live, will to survive. He didn't just survived but even remained a true patriot even during all the hardships which life threw at him and didn't pass on any information to the Japanese and didn't even go against his country on the radio.
This movie teaches me that how one can go to any extent to survive and nothing can break ones will to live. Louis Zamperini survives the war and returns home, gets married and again visits Japan at the age of 80 to participate in an Olympic run. It amazes me that how strong can one's will power be to survive. There are so many different types of people in this world. There is a Louis Zamperini who will break at nothing and will do anything to survive, then there are those who give up their life so easily.

I must say, life cannot be so bad with movies around.

Thursday, June 4, 2015

Life without goals and To Do lists

Ever since I was a child I was told to make goals and have a To Do list. As a child I was taught that how important and good it is to make a note of all the things that are to be done and then strike them off one-by-one as they get completed. When I reached the 10th standard people started asking me to set some goals for myself like I should achieve at-least 80% marks in boards, take up Science, do this do that. Few years later, I was told to set a goal to get an admit, then make another goal of securing good marks in college, then another goal to do something else and so on. Where ever I go, people talk about goals, be it parents, relatives, friends, teachers, boss etc. Even a random guy at an NGO once spoke to me about the importance of goals and how one's life is aimless, motionless and directionless without the lack of proper goals.

I was never really intrigued by this idea; was never really good at it. I don't remember making any to do list, don't remember setting any goals for myself either. It's not my forte; this is something that I just cannot do. I am always amused how can people actually sit down and prepare a To Do list, review it and again prepare a new one with a new set of goals, how they can set goals for themselves and then give their best to achieve them. The worst part of my office is the goal setting session with my manager. This is something that I have never done in life and something which I don't think I will ever do. The only To Do list that I may have prepared occasionally is the list of things that need to be done the very next day; I can't think beyond that.

People are funny; the most amusing goal setting advice that I would have got till date is that of setting a goal of getting married within an year. I couldn't even understand how this is a goal. People say: What is life without Goals? I really don't have an answer to this question. All I know is that I cannot prepare any To Do list, I cannot set any goal for myself, I cannot have any bucket list either. I don't think I will ever be able to do any of these things; neither am I looking forward to it. Let's see how I survive in this big bad world without any goals of my own.