Wednesday, July 13, 2011

The Rozabal Line

After reading 'The Davinci code' I had tried to familiarise myself with various theories connected with the life of Jesus Christ including his having spent a considerable amount of time in India. It was therefore with much scepticism that I approached The Rozabal Line by Ashwin Sanghi.  I was not sure whether it would provide me with something novel and fresh. I was pleasantly surprised. I am happy that I stand corrected.

The book begins with the revelation of the tomb of Jesus in Kashmir -Rozabal and from there goes on an international roller coaster ride with an impressive array of characters  across the boundaries of space and time. The chapters are short and crisp and follows an almost fluid like motion - very much like a grain of sand. But each chapter is like the grain of sand in an hourglass; each grain filling up a crucial piece of the story and inching towards a scintillating climax.
The author has done his research and it clearly shows in work. The book is very Indian and hence one finds a delightful intepretation of history from an uncompromising Indian perspective. The etymology of some words are so shockingly close home yet oblivious to the average Indian mind that it sends us on a detective hunt for intepretations of  siimilar words dispersed throughout the book.  He has done a commendable job of being patriotic while avoiding the narrow minded nationalism that we are so famous for. Thus there is no dull lecture on the extinction of the 'bharatiya sanskar' due to the import of western culture. I won't call him the Dan Brown of India. That would degrade him. His work is fiercely independent with enough masalas mixed to provide a wholesome entertainment. I believe that this book will send us on a journey to rediscover the myths, folklore and traditions that we believe we are so familiar with. It did that to me.


Saturday, July 2, 2011

Delhi Belly

When Dk Bose(click here) was launched it raised quite a few eyebrows. If your eyebrow(s) were among them then do NOT watch 'Delhi Belly'.
I would term the release of this film as the coming of age of mainstream bollywood cinema. Gems like 'Udaan' or 'Peepli Live' in my opinion were not mainstream enough. This movie is dirty, filthy, crass but not hypocritical. And that is what I liked about the movie.
The movie deals with the miserable lives of three losers, one of whom (Imran Khan) is about to get married to Sonia (Shehnaz treasurywala). Sonia picks up a package for a friend at the airport and through some series of intricate, comical(/vulgar) , and unfortunate events puts the lives of the three main characters in danger.
This short, crisp movie with a running time of just over 100 minutes have stretched the boundaries of acceptable scenes and language in bollywood cinema. Expletives flow freely like water and toilet humor is packaged (see the movie to know what I mean) in an entirely shocking manner. It is this boldness that is remarkable about this movie. It is bad and does not feel sorry about it.