This is a TV Series about an Indian American teenage girl, Devi (Maitreyi Ramakrishnan) wanting to blend in the American culture, while her Immigrated mother pins her rooted to Indian values. It’s a hilarious series from the get go. Devi the protagonist falsely quotes at a Ganesha Puja celebrations that, “I love to say I am Indian”, John McEnroe laments, I am more Indian that you, girl. Well yes, John is narrating the whole story and quite funny at it, comparing her life with his personal tennis events.
“In order to get sick, you have to come in contact with a sick person, in order to get scared you just have to get in contact with a rumor.” Laurence Fishburne.
WhatsApp is a wonderful place to look for rumors, so I did, there is a video viral of Contagion’s trailer playing with uncanny references to the current Covid-19 predicted in 2011. As I dig deep into the movie, it is any other Sci-Fi thriller based of the previous virus outbreaks which almost all have been from China. Frankly speaking I have not seen the movie Contagion – duh! then what are you critiquing about!!!
Well as I googled to watch this movie online (you know I am working from home), although I have Netflix and Amazon Prime, I need to rent it to watch. So I googled Youtube, I did not find the movie but watched a review written by a Real Doctor, not Whatsapp doctors, but a certified one, Medlife Crisis.
Apparently he was compelled to review this movie in the wake of Corona Virus comparison. Boy do I love his review. He explains about the movie in such detail medical terms and finally gives a thumbs up to the attention to detail. More cool about his review, he sips a Corona Extra(vaccine) and runs for an extra boost once it’s over, doc has some funny bone.
Well we are all familiar with the movies made in the light of British-India and there-after. One phrase stands out like a scar on the chest “You Bloody Indians“, may it be Richard Attenboroughs film Gandhi(1982), Aamir Khans Lagaan(2001) or Harrison Fords Indiana Jones and the Temple of the Doom(1984). Indians are either snake charmers or peasants. Even though today’s India is confident and economy booming at 10 to 12 percent a year under PM Narendra Modi, people walked out of the theater held their heads down from Thugs of Hindostan, for portraying Indians in bad light.
Welcome to The Indian Doctor a TV series, set in the 1960’s, an Indian doctor is invited to a small town in England to practice as the towns existing doctor has suddenly passed away. The screen opens with the doctor Mr. Sharma(Sanjeev Bhasker) although the local British would like to call him Mr. Charmer, along with his aristocratic wife Kaamini(Ayesha Dharkar) if only Brits could pronounce her name correctly. She is either called Camini or CarMini. Let me tell you Kaamini is a beauty with brains in the entire village and she brings an attitude with it. Although she starts like villain, there is no sweeter lady than her in the end. Kaamini’s mother who visits the town puts down all the Brits as stupid lot, she is ashamed to speak to any of them for there stupidity. You will see the true heart of a doctor to serve his patients even though they doubt his ability as a doctor from India. Mr. Sharma leaves no stone unturned before he exposes the top cat of the coal mine, Mr. Sharpes, who has risked the employees health for windfall profits. He acts a little like a Monk the detective to expose his wrong doings; this brings an end to season one.
Season two starts with a Small pox outbreak, although Mr and Mrs Sharma had planned to pack their bags and leave to India(Kaamini finds this village too backward for her tastes), they stay back to help the town with the crisis. This is where you see the gentle and educated heart of Kaamini, who works with her husband to contain the outbreak, eventually conquering the disease with only one death, which is attributed to one adamant Pastor who is determined to cure with the help of Lord as opposed to science(medicine).
There is a chance that you might not like the episodes and find it boring due to the slow pace and village settings, the Welsh and other English accents can throw you off. Have you ever watched a movie with your parents and in-laws together and suddenly a sex scene arrives and you can’t find the remote; all are adults but everybody is admiring the drapes and sheets in the bedroom. Same here just enjoy the beauty of the landscape of this beautiful village, I promise it’s stunning!
I recommend two seasons.
Badhaai Ho – Congratulations!
The title of the movie is supposed to bring a very pleasant feeling but that’s not what goes on in the movie. Nakul(Ayushmann Khurrana) our lead lives in a joint family with his parents, younger brother and his loud mouth grandmother. It’s still a very happy family although he is very embarrassed to introduce his upscale girlfriend Renee(Sanya Malhotra) to them.
The movie is picturised in a middle class family living on row houses, every time we watch such movies it’s reminiscent of the fact the we are loosing this culturally knit locality to fast growing metros.
So Nakul is enjoying his life, hanging out with his new found love everyday, his brother going to school who gets a pocket money from his brother; it’s a greatest feeling. Grandma is happy controlling the family where both son and bhau(Neena Gupta) are obedient all the time. It’s a very happy family.
Then the pain starts, mother kinda falls sick. See this is a story based of a middle class family, there has to be some pain. So the whole family is attending to her now. Anyways before I go into describing her sickness, I really want to quote this classic dialogue which summarizes the whole movie. Nakul and his brother are sulking on the terrace with their mother’s “illness“, he goes,
“You really had to cry and beg to have your own room, hah!“, smacks on his back of the head. Corollary to that line ‘Can’t you just continue sleeping with parents!‘. Yes, his brother is in high school and children do sleep with their parents as long as they want,
a. for the lack of space
b. unlike American culture it is not looked down upon for children to hang out with parents. Instead it builds a lasting bond of caring, this story is testimony for that
c. the most important reason is that in India it acts a parent birth control.
Alright to the climax of their mother’s illness, she was feeling giddy and throwing up, the common problem at this age – gastric trouble. With the expert doctors visit, the unthinkable gets confirmed, she is pregnant!
The family falls apart, Nakul storms out the door saying, “What were you thinking“, younger brother never looks into his parents eyes. Grandma scolds them saying, “It is time to see your son get married and have children, and here you are having your own time“. These grandma’s have a heart of gold mine, but spits fire from their mouth. Well the only person who said Congratulations was the doctor.
Then the smirky congratulations keep coming from neighbors and distant relatives.
Nakul who was already feeling low with his status as stacked up against his aristocratic girlfriend, this makes him go even lower. In the heated argument, breakup happens. He is ashamed to meet his friends, skips going to cousins wedding. His brother comes home with a bruised face; he had gotten into a fight with his classmate who had teased their mother. Then it takes a turn, first Nakul goes to school with his brother and fixes that classmate, comes back home and comforts his mother that he would be there for the smooth delivery supporting the family.
Well it’s a two hour movie going melodramatic and addressing the family values in the society. Finally on the delivery day his girlfriend comes to join his hand in celebrating a beautiful new angel baby girl to life.
In this day and age where socially appropriated heterosexual sex has become a novelty, while the millennials are busy using all kinds of social media, texting and sexting, somebody has to keep the age old tradition alive.
The movie opens with a rant about racism, denigrating the existence of blacks as equals in the society among whites. It is none other than Donald J Trump! err sorry, I meant his SNL alter ego Alec Baldwin. This sets the mood of the film, so if you are a Trump-ster, you have wasted your money. But you sit and enjoy the intelligent comedy played by the characters.
Then enters our protagonist, Ron Stallworth(John David Washington) prepping his nostalgic Afro hairdo, he becomes the first black police officer to join the force of Colorado Springs. Based of the true story, Spike Lee weaves the story from the past to present racism in America.
Ron starts of his duty in records room, who gets bored very soon, requests his chief to assign him a detective work. Due to his persistence Chief assigns him to infiltrate a Black Panther Activist movement headed by Kwame Ture. Ron accepts it as to socialize with his own community, which in turn finds his love interest; the head of the student union Patrice Dumes(Laura Harrier).
While he is rationalizing with his own kind that police are not pigs, who have tortured the blacks at every juncture concealing his identity. He stumbles upon an advertisement in local newspaper seeking members for a new chapter of KKK in Colorado Springs. He picks the phone and dials the number, the man on the other side asks why would he want to join? Ron goes, “I am WHITE man and hate all those N-word who are sleeping with our white girls and raping them”. I dare not spell that n word, Omarosa might be taping. He pronounces the word WHITE with southern accent, VOIIGHT as it can be. The jaws drop in the office as the rant continues from Ron over the phone, hating blacks. Spike Lee shows that how the rest of the white crew in the office are supportive of Ron except to one bad apple. There is always one that spoils the entire basket. Needless to say the KKK clansman is impressed by Rons views and gets accepted and intends to meet face to face.
Ron’s partner, Filip Zimmerman(Adam Driver) reluctantly agrees to be the face of Ron Stallworth, with Ron as voice, Filip as face the duo infiltrate the KKK, they learn the plans to bomb the Black Panther to eliminate the uprising and end up meeting the master himself, David Duke!
Lee has juxtaposed the KKK and Black panther meeting both being intense in their own right although I would say that the presence of Henry Belafonte is real moving. Lee brings in a full circle and gets that one bad apple on the tape and has him removed from the police force, thus saving the basket from contamination.
In the end Spike Lee ends the movie as a documentary highlighting the events of Charlottesville and President Trump delivering the speech ‘There were fine people on both sides‘ at the cost of an innocent life
It’s worth mentioning here that throughout the movie audience is laughing at the jokes played by Ron and his colleagues over the phone with KKK, but when the commentary from Henry Belafonte is delivered there is a pin drop silence and tears roll down as Heather Heyer is commemorated.
I have conveniently dropped the Nanda at the end to make it more appealing. Yes it is Sr Bachchan’s daughter writing about Selfie. Not surprisingly very eloquent article; she hails from writers family, her father and grand father. Found it very interesting to note that she is totally against the selfies while she is surrounded by huge personalities.
Selfie was immortalized by Ellen DeGeneres of course promoting the phone she held at Oscars. The picture itself was beautiful with all the Hollywood stars posing triumphantly for the shot, then it went viral on Twitter.
I am not so much against the selfies, but I tend to agree with Shweta on the self indulgence of we humans. Although selfie can be used as medium to capture everybody in the group, but like she says, why do it, if there several other tourists around you who would be glad to help you out. Builds human interaction and social acquaintance.
She also vents about the children taking selfies with duck face. Sure she being a mother herself would be annoyed by that, but it is still cute as long they are limited to children. Unfortunately lots of adults have never grown out of their childhood and progress into belfies.
Selfies has taken a sinister turn, which she is not addressing, the deaths related to Selfies is overwhelming. The picture posted above is that of a Russian daredevil Kirill Oreshkin has earned a name as Russian Spiderman for his selfies atop a hi-rise buildings. Call it daredevil or dumb move, one mis-step could cause his death. Other daredevils have not been so lucky who have succumbed to death, pricenomics lists such deaths in this article.
Mumbai police has posted a sign for Selfie daredevils,
Don’t make ‘taking a selfie‘ mean ‘taking your own life‘.
scores of people are dead taking a selfie near Marine Drive or Bandra seaface. Statistics have shown that India had almost 60 percent of deaths of all selfies.
Finally Shweta ends her blog with a satirical note, where she contacted her doctor for sunburns over the phone, to which her doctor responded, “Send a Selfie”, you can read her entire article here.
All his life he showed us the finest dining places across the world and some remotest of places and proved that it is not necessary to be wealthy to enjoy life and have fun. He did visit the Malaysian remote island (could be wrong), for the second time; this time being more popular TV host and explaining them that he had then loved their culture, where people cooked and drank all night till they dropped dead; metaphorically, a simple living and sharing the food amongst the entire village. More so than food, he showed the beauty of connecting with people across the world at a personal level.
With his exhaustive traveling and carefree living, he once said “With so many tattoos, one more I can take”, he took every challenge that was thrown at him, though scared at times, he was real on camera as he was in his real life.
He made his life an envy of all, dining in the most exotic places, maneuvering yachts, blending with various culture around the world and families alike or was it an illusion, we will never know.
Tony’s death came days after another celebrity ended her life tragically; Kate Spade, what drove these greats to this extreme, world would never know. Every budding chef, journalists many other common person in different professions idealized his life, wanted to be Tony, except himself.
Lastly I would leave with a thought that his high point in life (sorry for speaking on his behalf) would be, he introducing the President Barack Obama a good cheap eat in Hanoi, Vietnam over a bottle of beer!, but Barack being another great he has tweeted his best moment with Tony already.
I would like to quote Neil Degrasse Tyson, “Life is precious, here were are investing in search for life on Mars, wherever we find it, we need to cherish and nurture it”.
The man who lived so much, the idea of he not being there anymore is surreal.
Ode! Anthony Bourdain!