Sanju (Rajkumar Hirani, 2018) – or where can I find another friend like you?

A couple of years ago, I was pitching a script to a producer, a script that was to do with toilets and a girl who decides to pee openly in public, as many of my blogger friends declared we should do, after exchanging lurid Indian women loo sagas. The producer said a film was already going to be made on toilets. And even if my … Continue reading Sanju (Rajkumar Hirani, 2018) – or where can I find another friend like you?

My Only Sunshine – Reha Erdem, Turkey, 2009

Screenplay, Editing, Direction – Reha Erdem, Cinematography – Florent Herry,  Sound Design – Herve Guyader,  Production Design – Omer Atay,  Music – Orhan Gencebay,  Cast – Elit Iscan (Hayat) Hayat, 14, lives in a miserable shack on the shores of the Bosphorus in Istanbul with her father, a fisherman, a dealer in illegal liquor and prostitutes, and her grandfather, asthmatic, unable to breathe without the support … Continue reading My Only Sunshine – Reha Erdem, Turkey, 2009

Man Jaiye (B R Ishara, 1972) – or let’s play tic, tac, toe

‘Man Jaiye’ is a classic example of a man’s confusion about women’s rights.  I’m never quite sure what B R Ishara really thinks of women. He gives them great freedom in his films, his female characters are usually strong and unapologetic about their decisions in life, and yet, they do often come to a bad end (Chetna), or at least somehow take cover in a … Continue reading Man Jaiye (B R Ishara, 1972) – or let’s play tic, tac, toe

Gaman (Muzaffar Ali, 1978) – waiting for that embrace

Someone close to us passed away last week. Barely three months after his mother. Who was closer to us. To Dhanno and me. Death and funeral rites and sorrow notwithstanding, a feud rages on within the family for the small sliver of an apartment that has been home to 10 people in the last 20 years. 200 square feet. I look at the walls, blistered … Continue reading Gaman (Muzaffar Ali, 1978) – waiting for that embrace

Tarana (Ram Daryani, 1951) – some more Madhubala love

Sometimes PDA makes you awkward; sometimes it makes you scoff. Sometimes it’s hard to believe; sometimes it is plain annoying. And sometimes, just sometimes, watching the ritual of courtship between two magnificent animals makes you believe in the notions of eternal love and soul mates. Tarana (Ram Daryani, 1951) has nothing much going for it in terms of new story or exciting craft, there are … Continue reading Tarana (Ram Daryani, 1951) – some more Madhubala love

Kala Pani (Raj Khosla, 1958) – justice not done

Much before I knew Raj Khosla or Sachin Dev Burman or ‘Kala Pani’ (Raj Khosla, 1958), as a child, I knew the songs ‘Hum bekhudi mein tum ko pukaare chale gaye’ (Mohammad Rafi) and ‘Accha jee main haari, chalo maan jaao na’ (Asha Bhosale, Mohammad Rafi), probably from Chhaya Geet on Doordarshan. A J Cronin’s novel ‘Beyond This Place’ has had many film and television … Continue reading Kala Pani (Raj Khosla, 1958) – justice not done