Movie Review: Salaam Namaste

A complete “topo” of a Hugh Grant film, “Nine months”. The basic theme of the story is a little bit of a stretch for the Indian audience. To counter this fundamental issue, the director conveniently set the story in Melbourne in Australia! The hero is an architect turned cook! The heroine is a radio jockey (RJ)! A bunch of highly contrived circumstances result in the two in a live in arrangement as room mates. As always, one thing leads to another, they fall in love, and the heroine gets pregnant! The standard drama follows until the two come together in the end. A bunch of songs (nn of them really catchy) are thrown in as well.

Saif Ali Khan plays the hero and Preiti Zinta plays the heroine. After the success of Hum Tum, the Director attempts a movie with a similar look and feel but failed to come up with anything noteworthy. Saif does a decent job as he seems to do lately. Preity is too hysterical as the RJ. Her acting in this film reminded me of her poor show in Armaan. She seems be an actress who needs a good director to bring the bes out of her.

The movie makers show their ignorance about southern Indian states by introducing a “Nair” character (supposedly for comedy purposes!) who talks like a Tamilian!

If you haven’t seen the original, you might be able to survive this movie. Else, I would recomemed you pass on it.

SL will fight back!

The second test might appear to be over. But I don’t think this is going to be the case. I think the remaining SL batsman will at least put up a fight. With Dilshan, Vaas and Mubarak remaining, I think SL will not fold up that easily. Besides, India is notorious for letting tail-enders play fighting knocks. Should be an interesting days play nevertheless.

As for the Indian team, it has been “team work” all the way thus far with everyone sharing the burden of batting and bowling.

Second Test: Ind vs SL

Very interestingly poised Test match!

If both Ganguly and Yuvraj manage to score some runs, the team management will be forced to make some tough calls in order to bring back Viru. It will be sad to see Gambhir dumped since that’s the only other alternative. In any case, today’s game should settle this issue among other things!

Second Test, Second Innings: Open with Yuvraj!

India should open with Yuvraj. Facing Murali in his present form is going to be Yuvraj’s worst nightmare given that he is so suspect against spin bowling. It makes sense for India to open with Yuvraj. With a few runs under his belt against the opening bowlers and a little bit of luck he might just do better against Murali! The other option is to open with Dada! 🙂

Shoaib Akthar’s transformation

Shoaib’s performance in this series against Pak was very impressive. I saw him bat with unbelievable determination. He was also bowling at his best. All the criticism had put a lot of pressure on him and he knew that it was do or die attempt for him. But nothing beats his recent comments, “praise for Inzy, talk of prayer! etc.”. I find this completely shallow, opportunistic and plain and simple “towing the party-line!” First we had Youhana embracing Islam. Then we have Shoaib Akthar (by far the most liberated individual in the Pak team with bikes, chicks, smoking, partying defining his off field image) praising Inzy, talking of team unity and joint prayers by the team! Inzy has transformed this team into a religious bunch (barring a few) and Shoaib has realized that its in his best interest not to fight the powers that be.

What next, Shoaib Akthar with a Saeed Anwar like beard?

Serious comeback by Yahoo!

Check out

Man, these guys have fought there way back. I had thought that maps from Google where too cool and that I would never bother with Yahoo maps again. But these guys have done a phenomenal job with their new maps.

1. You can save addresses/routes so you can recall them when needed.
2. Live traffic updates are included.
3. You can look for anything (say “Indian restaurants”) around an address and “boom” its marked out on the map!
4. The maps have an inset showing the larger view that remains always on the screen.

All this and possibly more in addition to showing all of what Google has (barring the satellite pictures!) is quite an accomplishment in such a short time.

Have you checked out Yahoo voice chat? Its great! Very often works better than Skype. Has cool vmail capability too!

No question, Yahoo is coming back strongly against the competition.

Movie Review: Chandupottu

Title: Chandupottu (means “bindi” in Malayalam)
Type: Family Drama
Language : Malayalam
Starring: Dileep, Gopika.

This is a story of a fisherman’s family. The grandma in the family is longing for a female grandchild to be born because all the grandchildren are males! Unfortunately, she ends up with another grandson. Frustrated, she ends up bringing him (named Radhakrishnan) up like a girl — long hair, painted nails, make-up, bindi etc. Despite being a boy, he talks like a girl, walks like a girl and hangs out with the girls. However, he falls for one of the girls. There is some historic family rivalry courtesy of which a villain (a fine performance from Inderjit, son of the late mallu movie star Sukumaran), is introduced. As expected after some twists and turns the lead pair comes together (as if you didn’t guess!). This is a family story with plenty of masala, but some of it like the basic theme of the film is pretty creative, though not necessarily remotely realistic. There is some truly enjoyable hilarious comedy as a part of the main story itself as opposed to the deliberately inserted plug and play comedy that you see in most films.

Hats off to Dileep for a fantastic performance as Radhakrishnan. Gopika does justice to her role as the heroine. The movie is running to packed houses despite having crossed the 100-day mark. After a long time, I saw the movie in a jam-packed theatre in India! Overall, a very enjoyable film.

I am pretty certain that remakes of the film in other languages will soon start to appear. But the hero’s role is a very challenging one and not may heros might be willing to take this on.