Movie Review: Tridev

After a looooooooooong time I turned the telly on last Sunday in a rush thinking I’d missed out on the Oscars and found Tridev was playing.

Released in 1989 and a blockbuster by the yardstick prevalent back in the day; the movie is a laugh and minute even during the scenes which are supposed to be very high on the emotional quotient.

Madhuri Dixit, Jackie Shroff, Sunny Deol, Amrish Puri, Anupam Kher and a plethora of other chamaktey sitaarey (shining stars) of the era come together to make a 2 hour plus movie which is replete with the all the symbols of the 80s; and therefore was a total trip down nostalgia alley for me.

These are the tropes in the movies of the 80s and early 90s that I remember vividly-

  • Minimum 3-4 outfit changes for the female lead in the course of a song.
  • Each outfit quite outlandish and fairly garish and gaudy.
  • Villains are OTT evil and had to have a trademark evil laughter. Said trademark had to occur with each evil soliloquy.
  • Women are props. Used to pretty up a scene or as lures to get the male lead to come and duke it out with the bad guy. Women also need to sing during their captivity.
  • The police always arrive after everything ends and essentially are clean-up crews.
  • The back-up dancers are drab-faced people who end up dancing either like they are on meth or are stoned and never vary from either of these two extremes.
  • There is *always* love at first sight.
  • Love is expressed via song. At Least twice. First time: Initial expression. Second time: Reiteration.
  • The fight sequence is totally of comic book proportions without the blurbs spelling out the KAPOWS.
  • Each time anyone gets hit, they fly through the air a la The Matrix and the resulting sound effect is LOUD!
  • There is no anti-hero: there is black or white.
  • There is a weird depiction of a jungle tribe replete with loin cloths, tiger-striped clothing and jungle drums.
  • The jungle tribe utters inane stuff like Jinga Lala Boom etc.
  • Party scenes are usually where everyone is standing still like statues and one person moving about tipsy and singing an alcohol-related song.
  • Patriotism is also OTT.
  • The level and diction of the spoken Hindi is far superior than that spoken these days.
  • The music is catchy and unashamedly borrowed (bits and pieces) from dance hits famous overseas.

Since the advance in special effects hadn’t happened to the extent it has nowadays, things looked made-up and really clichéd but still entertained in a way many movies of today don’t.

While I may have laughed at Sunny Deol’s “angst” at finding his dead father, Amrish Puri’s Bhujang-avatar or even Sangeeta Bijlani’s determination to find her dead brother’s killer by becoming a gangster’s moll; the fact remains is that those movies entertain!

Oye oye!

Image courtesy- madaboutmoviez.wordpress.com

 

The Day Of Lurve

I didn’t know about Valentine’s Day till I was in elementary school in the US. It didn’t mean much once I came back to India. Well it still doesn’t mean much because I’ve only celebrated it about a handful times in my adult life.

The husband isn’t the roses (red or otherwise)and candy kinda guy. He does his bit on a daily basis and then some. Anyone who makes me a cup of coffee every morning is aces in my book. Even if he then leaves wet towels on my side of the bed without fail. EVERY DAY.

So over the years these are some of the more interesting V-Days I’ve experienced:

  • Circa early 2000s- a long-stemmed red rose on the eve of V-Day followed by a movie with 2 other couples and a nice, long bike ride to nowhere in particular.
  • Circa early 2000s (again)- a bouquet of flowers which smelt STRONGLY of Charlie because the flower vendor thought the natural smell of the flowers wasn’t powerful enough for such a special day. I spent half an hour sneezing and then tearing the petals off and scattering them all along the road while heading out for a movie with a special someone.The special someone grumbled on the entire ride at the stupidity of the flower guy and it made for a funny anecdote later on.
  • Circa  early 2000s (boy! I haven’t lived since the early 2000s, have I?)- my BFF and I doing a nice girls night out and landing up in the auto of a creepy, fanatical Hindutva- spouting, pink-heart-hating maniac who grumbled and ranted the entire time we were in the auto. Needless to say, we stopped the meter earlier than expected!
  • Circa early 2000s- another girls’ night out with BFF and another friend, recently single; dinner and lots of laughs over Chinese food and some pretty lousy tipping on our side.

Since then 14th February has been a date in the calendar and nowhere else. But that’s fine because if given a choice I wouldn’t know where to go and what to do. Red&I normally factor in a date night when my folks visit or when we want to watch a movie badly enough to park MLM on a good friend’s couch with his faithful iPad for a few hours.

But it’s also nice to look back on those days when the day meant something ‘more’ than the usual routine was in the offing and that it included a dinner, a movie, a well-groomed guy and definitely some marked attention from aforementioned guy; for a few hours.

Oh to be young and single again!

Naaah…

Image courtesy- voices.washingtonpost.com

 

Reflections at 4:47 am.

I’m up. Again. I’ll be useless by 11 am unless I have 2 super-duper coffees (one of them black) in the first half of the day.

I don’t mind waking up ahead of time. I like the near-solitude that the apartment offers. The offspring is sleeping in some odd modernistic dance pose and the husband is just blissfully asleep. People look very different when they sleep. You either cringe or look lovingly at them. No middle path there am afraid.

I am FILLED with love for my child when he’s asleep. The curl of his lashes, the pucker of his mouth and I notice everything about him; the crud in the corner of his eyes, a small spot of toothpaste he didn’t properly rinse off his chin and usually how his pajama bottoms are gradually heading north of his ankles.

A few days ago I was (yet again) deleting stuff from my email account because it was close to being full and I really didn’t know if I wanted to fork over money every  month for more space yada yada yada. I found some utterly delicious videos of my kid. Sadly they were taken with the sturdy, never-let-you-down-hardware-wise-but-otherwise-with-a-lame-ass camera Nokia I used to tote around before Samsung Galaxy came and changed my life for the better.

So there I was unearthing these treasures which I’d totally forgotten about…these grainy videos of him while still diaper-clad and with the requisite amount of baby fat when comes in the subject of those videos in present day avatar- lean, bucktoothed and with his run-of-the-mill dino t-shirt and asks me why am I going “awww” and smiling at my laptop so much. I tell him am looking at videos of him when he was a little(r) boy and it’s making me happy to remember those times. All sorts of maternally feelings are going on in my head with the past and present right in front of me and the world seems awash in those pretty shades from the color palettes which mothers apparently see when they feel a surge of love for their kids.

He looks over my shoulder, with his surprisingly pointy chin digging into my shoulder bone and says “I was a cute baby” and with the same breath telling me to move over somewhere else because he wanted to watch something on tv and my exclamations were too loud for him.

And just like that, in a snap, your maternal feelings evaporate and you longingly look at that diapered bum running around, chin all shiny from drool, making  bird and airplane noises and wish he was back just for a little bit. Instead you leave circa 2011 behind and face 2016 with semi-resignation and just plant your butt more firmly into the couch and say I was here first! And before the whiny and knee-jerk “Nooooo” starts off, you get your ‘talk-to-the-hand’ face and gesture in place and get back to viewing that chubby kid who ate everything under the sun and was cute as a button. This dinosaur-loving one could just do with cooling his jets for a wee bit!

Main Tenet of Dealing with Nostalgic Moms- NEVER mess with the nostalgia process…it brings forth the inner dragon; complete with fire and brimstone. And the claws.

Image courtesy-Pinterest

Relics of My Childhood

A good part of my life is nostalgia-ridden or driven.

I am quite in touch with the present and look into the future (aided by booze at times) but the past is quite bright and vivid for me overall.

When aspects, however minute, crop up from my childhood; it makes me quite cheery and I’m happy to trip back to school days and regale (not!) the Lord and Master aka Red about my experiences. He, in turn, is equally happy to tune me out and is careful to insert, ” Uh huh”, “Ohs” and “Really?” into the gaps in the near-monologue-y conversation that ensues.

A month or so ago, MLM got a Ring Pop in a goody bag and I was thrilled because when I was slightly older than he is now, I’ve pestered my mom for quarters to buy them from the gumball machine. And here was my kid about to go down the same road of experiencing an edible jewelry! My favorite is the grape flavor in case anyone was wondering. No? Onwards…

One of my crushes gave me a Ring Pop to show me he liked me and that the first ring given to me by any guy and also the only delicious one!

Another one of the things that I somehow liked playing with, and grossing my mother out at the same time, was Slime.

It was oozy, gooey and so much fun! So when I found some tiny barrel of slime in a toy store, I didn’t think twice and bought it for MLM and another one of his friends. Needless to say, the slime was a hit! It was fought over. It made its way onto some upholstery, a certain grandfather’s shirt and grossed out every sensible adult in the room.

I was telling Red this morning that of all the things I thought would endure over three decades, pop rocks, bubble tape, bubblegum lollipops and play slime didn’t even make the top 10. But it’s nice to see these things once in a while. They’re silly, fun and an unforgettable part of being a carefree kid.

What I Learnt From My Kid’s School

Image courtesy- www.financialeducatorscouncil.org

Courtesy Facebook’s memories I get to know about how and what I was thinking not only on a time a specific time in the past but also how I was feeling. And when I wrote this post I was a bit more of an anxious mother, fretting about my kid’s school, academic “career” as it were and basically uncomfortable about not knowing what lay ahead. Fast Forward two years I’m still sipping at the font of wisdom that is Life and learning loads while my kid goes to school. Here’s how it is…

  • A child will learn at their own pace no matter what!
  • A teacher who loves kids (genuinely) will probably be able to teach more through affection and warmth rather than another more knowledgeable individual who is distant or doesn’t form relationships with the kids.
  • Digital media, chalkboard, flashcards are all props…native intellect needs to be stirred and awake for learning to occur.
  • Making things interesting is all fine and good but it helps that the biological age increases and life experiences help kids understand why they need to learn.
  • Getting a good night’s sleep and cutting off from anything academic goes a long way in learning taking place.
  • Physical activity- silly and unstructured or properly regimented aids in learning as well.
  • Learning can come from various sources provided it’s pitched at the right time and the right way.
  • Parents need the teachers’ presence more than the kids…just to be assured that all’s going as it should.
  • Taking a small step back from policing the child (even with all the best intents in the world) is a fantastic thing to do while they’re below the tweens.
  • Reflecting on what were turn-offs and stumbling blocks while we were students helps empathize and give the child space to assimilate their learning material.
  • Accepting that there’s a Bell Curve and your child will grow into a more permanent place in it, helps be good parents as well.
  • Trusting the people you entrust your kid’s physical, emotional and overall well-being to and yet realizing our role is constant in the whole scope of things.
  • Acknowledging that improvements- slight, steady or sporadic; are still a step in the right direction give you a good night’s sleep.

Long story short? The AC bus and the pool helps because trappings are important. But a teacher who makes sure your kid has a balanced meal daily and who can come back and share positive and negative feedback with indemnity goes a long, long way in knowing how to be supportive while your child learns about life. Be it from a tablet, a workbook or just from a walk in the park. Because a big part of being a parent is taking a backseat while your kid gets the controls of life just right. You have to deal with not always being able to call ‘shotgun’.

Here endeth the lesson.

Reblogged:Playing With The Hand You’re Dealt…

Isn’t that what it all boils down to in life?
It isn’t always celebrating the things that go well or in accordance with our plans or even making our peace with the things that don’t. It’s finally just existing with what IS.
Sometimes we are able to do it gracefully and other times it takes a lot of plodding and prodding to get through each day.

There’s a saying by Oscar Wilde that people often smugly quote- ” There are only two tragedies in life: one is not getting what one wants, and the other is getting it.”

I’ve found that while tragedy might be too strong a word for it, it does seem difficult to comprehend and accept ,what you sought out, opted for even isn’t all that it’s cut out to be or even worse…it’s not what you want. Is inadequate.

So you shuffle the deck a few times and hope the next hand is better than the one that has you staring in bafflement.

Or you chuck the cards up in the air and don’t care if they scatter all over; since it’s mimicking life in doing so.

And some of us painstakingly make a house of cards. Trying to balance each card over the other and anxiously watching whether they stay up or come tumbling down.
In the end you either end up with a steady house you used up all your cards in making and are proud of or you decide to call it quits after you reach a plateau and are still left holding a few cards for later.

It’s all about playing with the hand you were dealt.