Wednesday Watching Post! With a Fun Question For You

This came up last Monday when procrastinitrix asked it, and I thought it might be a fun question for us to all toss around.  And another little break in the Jab Harry Met Sejal coverage, which is no doubt irritating for those of you who haven’t seen it/don’t want to see it.

So, yeah, I’ve been watching Jab Harry Met Sejal.  Only 2 times so far.  Opening night and last night.  And another time scheduled tomorrow.  It eats up all my free time, so no other movies (all Malayalam, classics, etc. posts for this week were written last week and pre-scheduled).

So, question for us to talk about instead of the new movies I’m not seeing!

If you could pick one movie in the world to erase from your memory and watch again for the first time, what would it be?

 

I’ve got two answers for two different reasons.  First, DDLJ, because I would love to watch it with fresh eyes knowing everything I know now about Indian film.  Instead of as my 3rd Indian film ever knowing nothing.  There was so much I didn’t appreciate!

And second, Singin’ in the Rain, just because it was so amazingly joyous seeing it the first time (at age 6), and I want to experience that again!  I don’t want to know anything more or anything like that, I just want to experience it again for the first time.

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32 thoughts on “Wednesday Watching Post! With a Fun Question For You

  1. Wizard of Oz, without a doubt. I actually saw it In a big theater when I was perhaps 5. This was before they started showing it every year on TV, but it was still making the rounds in the 1950s. The tornado scared me (we were living in Nebraska), the Wicked Witch of the West was terrifying, and I loved all of her traveling companions, especially the lion. It was the most magical movie I ever saw, probably until Doctor Zhivago.

    Besides seeing JHMS twice, I finished Veer-Zara and have being moving slowly through the TV Buddha series on Netflix. Young Siddarth is an interesting character, but I pity the actor once he becomes enlightened. Buddha is so calm he seems robotic — a compassionate, nonviolent robot, but still… the character roles are much better, especially Jagat Singh, who chews the scenery at an SRK level as the evil Devdutt. He has been in a few films, and I would be curious to see him in a modern role.

    Besides that, my 4-year-old grandson was visiting for a few days, and we watched Moana, which we both enjoyed immensely.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’ve heard really good things about Moana, but somehow still haven’t watched it.

      I think the first time I saw Wizard of Oz, I was thrown by the switch to color. Because I was so used to all black and white movies (Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers). That’s my biggest memory.

      On Wed, Aug 9, 2017 at 8:09 AM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  2. I think I’d pick Jodhaa Akbar simply because it was my first introduction to Hindi cinema and it remains one of my all time favorites. For non-Indian films, probably Lion in Winter or Queen Margot (two of my other all time favorites). There’s definitely a theme here: epic historical romance with pretty people and great dialogue.

    Watched Baahubali: The Conclusion last night on Netflix for the first time finally! I watched the Hindi version, but I have yet to see either of them in Telugu which I really want to do! I could have watched a whole film with the romance of Baahubali and Devasena. That was by far my favorite sequence. The whole story is so predictable that I found myself ignoring dialogue and just taking in the visual spectacle most of the time. These movies are so much about the sweet and sometimes terrifying bonds between mothers and sons, aren’t they? There are some definite Oedipal things going on in the first few scenes.

    I’ve really wanted to start rewatching more, but I often get on a kick where it becomes a goal/contest to see as many new films/read as many new books as I can! So after Baahubali I had a sudden urge to rewatch Jab We Met and watched the first half and will finish it after work today. It must be all the JHMS stuff that made me want to return to Ali’s crowning glory. It’s just so perfect it’s aging so well.

    Also listening to #NoFilterNeha on Saavn. Listened to most of season 1 (some eps not available for some reason) and the two new ones (Varun and Ranveer). Some takeaways:

    I really like Neha Dhupia and think I need to delve into her films more. I always liked her in Chup Chup Ke and think she has a cool chick vibe that never really meshed with the films she did. She could have been the Kangana Ranaut of her day if they were making more films like Tanu Weds Manu and Simran back then. I know she’s not much older but still.

    Arjun Kapoor is a big ol’ flirt and likes older women for sure. He was pulling out all of the stops with Neha. Chetan Bhagat is a clueless tool. Varun idolizes Govinda and Salman and that’s probably why I don’t get him, plus his love of WWE and The Rock is so cheesy. I love Sonam and Kareena.

    And I really want to go to game night at Farah Khan’s house!!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’ve been tempted by No Filter Neha, I certainly hear enough ads for it on my Saavn!

      And Baahubali 1 is one that I would like to watch for the first time again, now that you remind me. Not so much 2, that film is so complicated that it rewarded 2nd and 3rd watches more than the first.

      On Wed, Aug 9, 2017 at 9:34 AM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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      • So do you subscribe to Saavn? I did a month trial in order to listen to the No Filter Neha, but I really don’t think I need it for the music. I wish the show was on iTunes instead, but I get why the Indian market wants their own thing. But it seems impossible to find the show in other ways!

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        • Definitely listen to the Farah Khan episode. She’s so funny and real and she always answers the tough questions like who are the worst dancers you’ve worked with? Fun stories.

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        • I do subscribe! It’s for work, sort of. I do phone support, so I have a headset on all day. And if I use the Saavn app, I can listen to music on my phone, and then it automatically pauses and switches over to the phone if I get a call.

          On Wed, Aug 9, 2017 at 9:47 AM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  3. I’m so tickled the question from the comments made it to it’s own Wednesday watching post. 🙂 I’ll tell my co-worker who inspired it.

    My response, also posted in the other thread, is The African Queen. I first watched it with my mom as a kid, and fell in love with the characters and their (internal and external–just like JHMS!) journey. Almost as good as watching it for the first time, I watched it with my daughter a few months ago. She liked it though wasn’t smitten like I was.

    Does SRK remind anyone else but me of Humphrey Bogart, by the way? I’ve had a crush on Bogey since The African Queen and I like him in every type of role. He can be smart, funny, romantic, sexy, heroic, and is really good at baddies. SRK is definitely better looking than Bogart, but they have similar builds, with distinct looks, and a certain charisma that is present in every role. Also both smokers, sadly. SRK if you’re reading, please quit before you meet Bogey’s fate!

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    • I could see SRK as Bogart. They also have a similar distinctive look and tone which makes it seem as though they are doing the same thing in every role, but really they aren’t.

      On Wed, Aug 9, 2017 at 9:43 AM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  4. Oh, Chak De! India – always.
    I want to erase it and watch it again. I want to watch it again for the first time with eyes who have never seen the real incarnation of Kabir Khan. I remember being fifteen when the film came out, and I remember going in to the theatre with my parents for Shah Rukh, and coming out knowing that something had changed for young girls in India. It might seem trivial and silly, it’s only a film, but as a young fifteen year old girl growing up, trying to understand all the things I could do, and the endless possibilities in front of me, Chak De meant something to me.
    (It’s one of the reasons why I find Dangal OFFENSIVE. A sports film about female athletes NEEDS TO BE about Female agency.)

    Anyway, incidentally, this month marks 10 years of Chak De, something I found out from Rajeev Masand on youtube this morning.

    Liked by 1 person

    • First, OMG you are so young!

      Second, that’s a really interesting story. I don’t know why, but I never thought before about the effect Chak De would have on young girls, rather than on grown women feeling vindicated or grown men learning a lesson.

      Now you’ve got me thinking, maybe that’s the difference between Chak De and Dangal. Chak De was made to inspire girls. Dangal was made to teach men a lesson.

      More generally, that feels like the difference in all of Shahrukh’s films, including JHMS. The focus is always on reaching the female audience and inspiring/reassuring/teaching them. Not on the male audience. Even Raees and Don, more straight action films, gave us strong heroines we could relate to.

      On Wed, Aug 9, 2017 at 11:13 AM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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      • I really might be the kid in this group. I was WAY TOO young when I saw Kuch Kuch Hota Hai. So young that I used to refer to him as Shah Rukh uncle. For a while, he was ‘Anjali’s dad’ to me. Which is hilarious now, looking back.

        I agree with you, and it’s my biggest problem with Aamir’s “revolutionary” films; they are usually revolutionary for the men. 3 Idiots – why did Rancho have to be right all the time? Kareena was practically a cardboard cutout in the film. She runs off on her wedding because finally, Rancho’s friends came by to take her to him. What, she never tried to find him on her own? Her life hasn’t moved on, meanwhile?

        Dangal was more about one man’s obsession with a goal than it was about a father wanting the best for his daughters. It was immature, and practically dangerous at certain points. They show the elder daughter gaining some agency toward the second half of the film, but she is painted in an apologetic light for it. She has to apologize for that agency, for stepping out of what her father expected of her. I would have been satisfied if I got ONE MOMENT in the film, where the writers acknowledged their own self-righteous pompousness, an idea of “this sucks, this should not be the BEST that women like you can hope for, but it is right now, and we’re sorry.” I want to know what would have happened if Geeta had said, I am done with wrestling in the second half of the film. Would he have let her be, or turned his aggressive, unhealthy drive toward the younger one?

        Chak De manages to avoid all of these pitfalls. Not one minute in the film do you question if any of the players even want to be there. In fact, the film opens by showing us that all of them had beaten unsurmountable odds to get there. All Kabir was doing was showing them a different WAY of playing than what they were used to. He never stood in way of their agency unless it hurt the team. Chak De relates to women much more because we’ve all been where Sabarwal is, with her sexist asshole of a fiace. We’ve all felt what Komal did, with that need to prove yourself and finding fellow women in your way more than men. We’ve all related to the captain’s pain, caught as she is between her dreams and her family’s expectations of her. I KNOW so much about those 16 girls, and I couldn’t pick out three things about the 2 Dangal girls combined.

        Having said that, I am looking forward to ‘Secret Superstar’. Please Aamir/writers, don’t screw up another story about a young girl fighting the odds to chase her dreams. Make it good, and please MAKE IT ABOUT HER. Keep your goddamn male savior complex to yourself.

        Sorry this turned into a rant.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Aw, Shahrukh Uncle! If it helps, you are definitely not the youngest of my regular commentators, I will let you figure out the other one on your own 🙂

          It is really neat that you grew up with Shahrukh, and then fell in love with him when you were the right age for it! That was something we were talking back and forth about a few months back, if Shahrukh is still gaining new fans or if he is just “too old” now.

          I agree, Secret Superstar looks good. Although I am more worried after the full trailer, the teaser made it look like it would just be one tiny cameo scene with Aamir, but the trailer makes it look like he has a full role. If they keep it to a few small scenes where he provides general advice and support, that could be a great movie. I hope it doesn’t turn into more the story of a jaded music producer excited to discover a new voices than the story of that new voice.

          On Wed, Aug 9, 2017 at 11:35 AM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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        • Hey, I too was 15 when Chak De released and I completely agree with all of your Chak De v/s Dangal comparison. (Are you secretly me?) Both films had this looming super star presence in a role guiding young female sports persons. Both characters hoped to achieve through their next generation what they themselves couldn’t do. And yet Chak De managed to be each of the sixteen girls’ film (more for some, less for others but still) as much as SRK’s in a way Dangal could never balance its three leads. I still have one issue in Chak De about the captain’s role in the team and the film. It’s kinda minor in comparison to the rest of the film. I remember constantly comparing Dangal during my two watches to Chak De and thinking how Chak De was a much better film.

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        • Shahrukh Uncle!!! I loved your rant, too, so please feel free to rant away.

          I loved hearing about how Chak De India effected you as a teenager. That’s what I thought about as I watched the film — wondering if it left girls feeling empowered — so I’m glad to hear it really did.

          I agree that Dangal is more a message for the men, but unfortunately it seems they still need to hear it. I agree that the insertion of just one little scene could have helped the girls feel like they had more agency.

          Liked by 1 person

  5. This week I watched JHMS in cinema and I’m still excited. I manage finish Manam too but I’m little confused and not sure if I like it or not. Maybe it’s just that I had my expectations too high.

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    • Manam is super confusing! I’ve had that reaction before from people.

      Are you the one who hasn’t seen Jab We Met? If so, you HAVE to watch it! Great come down from the JHMS high.

      On Wed, Aug 9, 2017 at 2:24 PM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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      • I have seen Jab We Met, and it’s one of my favourite hindi movies. And it started my Shahid Kapoor crush (not present anymore)

        I think that problem with Manam is that this movie is very specific, made for telugu audience who know well Akkineni family and will enjoy seeing them all together. I knew that they are family but I’m not fan so it was like any other movie. But yes, I absolutely loved Shriya Saran story. Will write more in Manam comments.

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        • Shoot, I wonder who it is who hadn’t seen JWM? Whoever that is, I need to keep nagging them until they do. For their own good 🙂

          Looking forward to your Manam comments!

          On Wed, Aug 9, 2017 at 2:54 PM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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          • It’s me, I haven’t seen it yet–I confessed in the JHMS 2nd scene by scene post. 🙂

            And yes–please watch Luck by Chance! Would love to hear what you think of it and how accurate the portrayals of “behind the scenes” and movie-making relationships are.

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          • You HAVE HAVE HAVE to!!!!!! And maybe don’t even wait for a watch along, because it wouldn’t really be a good watchalong movie. Like, so good you will want to pay attention to the screen on your first watch instead of looking up and down at twitter.

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  6. I think the first film that comes to mind to see for the first time again would be The Gay Divorcee with Ginger Rogers and Fred Astaire. It’s my favorite of all their films, and just magical. The other would maybe be DDLJ — it was one of my first ever Bollywood, and I wonder how I would see it now with more knowledge beforehand. If I saw it like Indian audiences did after his other roles, and them whammo, I would see it as so different and special.

    This week was a big one for me. Margaret has mentioned it in her own posts about her new Youtube channel, but I launched my own, called Pardesi with Kartik from Bollyfools. Kartik let me know that Pardesi can mean foreigner (me) and also ex-pat, which he is, as he lives in the US. It’s been a whirlwind. I chose this past week because of Shahrukh’s movie coming out. Since he started my Indian cinema journey, it seemed only appropriate. I’m doing trailer reactions too, which frankly I find a little odd but looking to grab views as I start.

    I was disappointed in JHMS, but whooo boy Shahrukh was his sexiest ever as Margaret already talked about! That kiss!! That finger up the navel in the nightclub! Gah!

    I also saw the Rom Com Fidaa. What is super special about that Telugu film is Sai Pallavi who we know from the Malayalam films Kali and of course, Premam. She is AMAZING. Telugu speakers who have commented on my review video said that she not only learned the Telugu language for the film, which is very unrelated to Malayalam or Tamil, but she got the village Telegana accent of her character just exactly right. She worked very hard on it, and just shone all the way through. Another commenter told me today the film has made $2 million in the US box office, even with Telugu inflated prices, that’s pretty darn impressive.

    Please check out my Pardesi channel as I also moved over all my reviews I had done over the last few months for Bollyfools.

    https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCYM-MuVmVwTDAe3uuFkBgZA

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Sometime you should ask us about a movie that we haven’t seen but everyone else has seen and loved. And that would flush out the person who has not seen JWM, and we could all reply “OMG! You have to see that!” to everyone else.

    My movie that I would like to see again without having seen it: like a lot of other people, it’s the movie that made me really get into Hindi movies, which for me is Chameli. I watched and enjoyed a lot of other ones, but this one made me order a bunch of DVDs pretty much immediately after I finished it. Or maybe Kahaani because I just loved it all the way through and I want to experience the twist again.

    For extremely complex reasons, having to do with switching my tablet from a Windows to an iPad, and the difficulty of getting a Japanese credit card, and the fact that subtitles will not play on Apple TV, I haven’t been watching any Indian movies. (The whole iPad switch could be a movie in itself. Tabu could be me. It took ages and many phone calls to sort out). However, I am now able to watch again and the iTunes store is now available to me! So, this weekend I am hoping to finally, finally see Ae Dil Hai Mushkil and Befikre, and sometime later I will see Kadambari and Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi and start figuring out what other things they have that I haven’t had the chance to see.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’m almost more excited to see Vivek Ranjith than Prithviraj. He has brought so much joy to my life!

      On Tue, Aug 15, 2017 at 1:24 AM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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