Tag Archives: Hollywood

911 vs 100: A Realistic Review

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By Ankit Chandra

Yes. I plan to compare the two numbers. There are many factors to look at, and I will try to sum them up as precisely as possible…

Ask any American, or watch enough Hollywood movies and you will see that 911 is something that Americans use very frequently, for things as small as sticking your hand to something very embarrassing (in American Pie) to something much bigger as in Die Hard… But you get the picture… as soon as there is any situation of any kind and severity, 911 is one of the first things they will think of. Efficiency of this system is so good that you are almost assured a response in minutes wherever you are in the country. There is proper research done while making roads, to ensure that any part of a city is reachable in 2-10 minutes from the nearest Police patrol (my ex roommate was working for a firm that did this research)

100 on the other hand usually has a fleeting reference in the heads of Indians. Should something go wrong, the first set of people we think about are our neighbors, or friends. In some cases, we probably don’t even want to get involved with the police. Like Hollywood in previous case, if you watch enough Bollywood movies, you will see that people do not usually want the police to get involved, or the police any how comes only when the hero has beaten the crap out of the villain, despite the absence of police. What I imply from this is that police is at least considered inept, or inconsiderate, or untrustworthy.

But if I think deeper about this, the differences don’t just stay as mere facts and jokes as above… They begin to show the vast difference that exists between the two countries.

To implement a system like 911, a few basic things are needed. First it needs to be such a dependable system that time and again, anywhere, anyhow, should there be an emergency, some help should be able to reach the victim. It is only then that a person will trust this 3 digit number so much to remember, and call, this number when their life is in danger. In addition, this number should be able to give you the warmth that you would have no inhibitions in trusting them for any situation of any sort. Third, the versatility of this number should be such that this number can handle any kind and severity of situation.

These are just a few components that go into making this system work. Any person in Process Management would tell you that this calls for operational efficiency, and that too of a very high standard, because it deals with lives of people. Implementing this, even in a small society of 200 apartments is such a huge pain. I can tell you this by my experience in getting an electrician to fix a power cut in my apartment in Delhi.

Now imagine implementing this at the level of a nation. One of the world’s biggest nations by land size and population. But this has been implemented here in the US. And everytime I think of this system, and dare to compare it to 100, I first get awestruck, and then get upset.

Why can’t India implement a system like that? What’s stopping us? Don’t we deserve to have such a system to help us lead a better life? Must our loved ones die waiting for help to arrive? Or worse still. die waiting because the PM is visiting the Hospital?

It needs will which is easy to say, but much more difficult to implement. It is also dependent on how strongly people ask for this, and make this (instead of speaking Marathi in Maharashtra) a political issue. And that comes from social awareness. That is VERY different from education, which is again VERY different from literacy… A nation of 1 billion, with most people not even knowing the significance/value of such a system is where we lack the point. And I think the most critical role here is to be played by the middle class in India. I belong to it, and by having studied in US now, I know what we lack. There are many more middle class students who have been lucky enough to see and understand the difference between the two systems. Now that we are ‘aware’ we must pass this on, and strive to make everyone aware of this.

It is only when people are aware of this that leaders will rise, and take this issue further, and even take it on to them to implement this. And then we will have someone to vote for. Then we could also look at appointment of competent officers in implementing this system, and much more importantly, sustaining it.

The best way to resolve our issues is to move bottom up. And for that we need to be aware…

  • ReThink911 (careandwashingofthebrain.blogspot.com)
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4 Reasons You Must Watch World War Z

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Rohit Sakunia just returned from watching World War Z and could not restrain himself from penning down 4 reasons why it is a viewers delight. Read on

1. Brad Pitt is brilliant: Needless to say this but still the fact remains that Brad Pitt can make even an ordinary flick seem like an extraordinary. He is fabulous, creates scenes which only he can, and travels the globe to find out the answer to a virus which could bring the next apocalypse, or has it already. The zombies look feeble in front of him (which they should considering the great looks of Pitt) and he perfectly settles into the rugged look that he has been crafted in. Considering he is also one of the producers of the film, he definitely has put all in it.

2. Zombies, Thrill, suspense and the Apocalypse: So you just returned after watching Go Goa Gone and have no mental strength remaining to watch yet another. Don’t worry, this is a Hollywood thriller and would look much more realistic and magnanimous then anything you have seen on zombies in your life yet. The scale on which the film has been made and the fact that it has been portrayed as a global apocalypse makes it a must watch for all Armageddon followers.

3. It’s a smart film: When I say its a smart film, it means the script actually makes sense vis-a-vis other Zombie films. It actually makes sense to say that this film goes beyond the normal senseless fun that zombie movies are related to. Its a mystery where the protagonist actually picks up clues to solve a problem which could lead to the end of the world. And lastly

4. It will make you jump and grip the next seating guy tightly: So even though the film makes sense it still gives you moments when you’ll jump off from your seat in sheer fear and thrill. Like all Zombie thrillers, this isn’t a full-time jumping jack film but it has moments where it can scare. Director Marc Foster instills wonders just when you least expected and just when you think the moment is not close comes a thrill that throws you out of the seat. The good thing is it’s not gory but still curls you up in your seat in anticipation of what is to happen next. Its not the classic horror movie, but in its moments, it surpasses all you have seen in the best horror flicks.

Overall a must watch. 

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Hollywood: You Have Sci-Fi! We Have Mythology!

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Ankush Kumar writes on why we should understand the charisma of our own Super Heroes in Bollywood films when we so easily lap up nonsense in the form of sci-fi thrown by the West. A must read for all cinema critics.

Disclaimer: ‘The Rashomon effect’ is the effect of the subjectivity of perception on, by which observers of an event are able to produce substantially different but equally plausible accounts of it.

Good Morning Folks! I have just come back from watching ‘Iron Man’ their third installment of the Comic strip produced by Marvel. Shane Black the director of the movie has been someone who has executed some great works in the past, but the one that is closest to me is ‘Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, all his movies have one common element, they have all been buddy movies.

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This write up though is not a review of the film. I have been watching a lot of these sci-fi movies ever since I have started watching cinema. We at India too have many film industries, but the one that is most talked about and often compared to with the west is ‘Bollywood’.

In the early nineties Indian television produced great epics in the form of Ramayana and The Mahabharata. The battles shown on screen were unheard of, it was almost unbelievable, that a man could have multiple heads, or an arrow could create fire to win battles. But they did and the audience was entertained. That is the bottom line my friends ‘entertaining the audience’. The writers at the helm linked it to mythology, knowing our nation’s pulse the audience lapped it up to. And they gave apt explanations behind every sequence; they convincingly linked it to mythology.

That has been a similar case with the West (Read Hollywood). The West has made imaginative movies based on the concept of future. They termed it as Science-fiction films, popularly known as Sci-Fi flicks. Not all of them have been great ones, some have been trendsetters some absolutely lame (Iron man 3).

The point is in the name of ‘cinematic liberty’ ( A term used often to justify stupidity) Hindi cinema has shown Our Hero hammer 100 people at one time, the West has shown an aircraft window being breached. (Hello! It’s a godddamit Air Force One Plane).

If Iron Man and its entire series ‘on the name of future’ can be realistic and wow, so can be our Dabbang movies and their action sequences.

In fact our HEROES are born avatars of LORD HANUMAN (something which Arbaaz Khan & Co can use in the third installment of the Dabbang franchisee), hence have extraordinary powers, we do not need logic; it’s there in our history and has been told for centuries through mythological literature.

If you the reader cannot buy this logic, nor can I that all these Sci-Fi movies make sense. And in fact if these Sci-fi movies makes absolute sense to you, then so does the Singhams and Dabbangs. The West needs superheroes generated through graphics and they can only hope that their dreams come true. We in fact live with baggage of having super heroes in our history.

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Coming to this movie ‘Iron Man 3’, during the entire promotional time Ben Kingsley’s act was suppose to be the biggest evil act in cinematic history since Sajid Khan took to film making. Unfortunately he performs his level best in a half baked character and his role has no logical culmination.

The other aspect that has baffled me to the core is the kidnap of the American President! (Dude he is the most powerful man in the world), time and again they have shown him an easy prey for a lot of film makers. It is more like the ‘Phone cut’ in our industry. Phone cut simply means, when a writer is stuck and wants to take the scene forward he uses an escape route. They have the funds you see, we are still stuck with a phone!

Hence next time when you see another super hero flick do an honest critique, try looking beyond the obsession of their futuristic stars and do not trash our Dabbang and Singham heroes!

 

P.S: Last year when ‘Agent Vinod’ released everyone trashed it, see the movie again and see a James Bond movie, there is not much of a difference there. The critics cried ‘how can a spy romance in such an important mission? I say why not? If 007 can have sex, romancing is still less energy consumption.

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Happy 100th Birthday Bollywood: From a Fan Turned Critic

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Ankush Kumar talks of how Bollywood has taken copying seriously in the name of being ‘inspired’. He though hopes someday the west also will be inspired from our films. Must read.

Assistant Director: Sir we need to make the breakdowns before the film goes on floors!

A trainee assistant talking to his director in the office.

Director: Don’t worry son, it is all in here (signals towards his brain)

Assistant Director: But sir how will we execute the movie, if we don’t have things on paper?

Director: Don’t worry son I can see the entire picture clearly, you go and see if the food has been delivered?

The Assistant Director leaves the chamber and goes back to his cubicle.

Director: Today’s kids. I tell you have a habit of challenging the vision, when will these boys learn? Filmein aise thodi banti hai?

Friend: Bilkul sir, aap toh genius ho, kahan yeh aaj kal ke smartphone generation ke bacche samjhenge.

The director excuses himself, locks himself into another room and is seen directly on the day of the shoot!

On the day of the shoot the entire crew is clueless of what is going to happen? The director walks in, and in a very smooth manner executes almost twenty percent of the movie.

Friend: sirjee aap toh great ho, maan gaye yeh film toh superhit hai.

The director smiles and leaves the set; this process is continued till the shoot is done. The trainee assistant has unlearned everything he was taught in his film school! He is baffled by the execution of the film.

The above written script of course is fictious but the bitter reality is that for a very long period of time this has been the norm when it comes to making Hindi language films. Today though the trend is changing, we have filmmakers who follow the right pattern in executing a movie, the one thing though that hasn’t changed though is ‘getting inspired from others’. For time immemorial directors have had the right DVD’s in their hands, and have executed movies accordingly. Earlier before the advent of satellite television in our country, our makers blatantly lifted movies from the west, copied their music and made it their own. Since the common man on the road had no access to the original literature, praises were heaped on the talent of these makers.

Times have changed now, we have better access to movies from Hollywood, even the Hindi heartland speaking people have access to movies translated into their language of comfort, and so what do the makers try? Execute movies of other foreign languages and claim it as their own.

Exceptions to the rule do exist too, we do make cinema that is refreshing and original, but that unfortunately can be counted on finger tips. There is a dialogue in the movie Nayak, it said ‘Ek chaprasi se lekar neta tak humare desh mein sab bhrasht ho chuke hai’. This holds unfortunately true for our movies too. ‘Ek film ke poster se lekar us film tak sab copied hai. OOPS! Inspired hai’.

Now as we enter ‘100 years of cinema’ and we have been celebrating this feat for a long time, we should wonder what are we proud of? In the age of ‘Google’ where we have access to the world in nanoseconds, most of our movies are not entirely originals. They say ‘nothing is original in this world, not even GOD’ but that can be the lamest excuse for someone who hesitates in producing features that can be claimed as their own.

They say with age comes wisdom and with wisdom comes the responsibility of doing something sensible, but as we have entered the second decade of the 21st century our makers (barring a few) have actually been churning out more nonsense than ever. The prime difference now though is ‘Their ideas have the stamp of a copyright contract’, they finally have seem to run out of inspiration too!!!

P.S: In a country where our constitution is made by combining the best laws of several other countries, it is quite natural our cinema has been the same. Someday ‘The West’ will get inspired by our movies too!

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