Wednesday Watching Post: What Are You Reading and Watching and Thinking on Rani’s Birthday?

Happy Rani’s Birthday!!!!  Such a joyous day, which I will celebrate by not having to write new content and instead reposting reviews, yaaay!  But that also means I have loads of time to discuss with you in the comments here.

I’ll start!

Reading: nothing much of anything, been sort of crazy busy lately, so no books of any description.  But my mother is reading Betsy-Tacy which is making me want to reread them.  The last 5 books are so stressful, but so good!

Watching: See above.  I’m doing the service at church on Sunday and I’ve been mostly running around getting that together, besides my usual Friday-Monday-Tuesday movies I haven’t had time for anything additional.

Thinking: I need to clip Dog’s nails.  I already gave her a bath, which was surprisingly untraumatizing. Well, for me.  It wasn’t great for her.  But all I had to do was throw her in the tub and then she is too tiny to crawl out and her spirit broke pretty fast, and I could just hold her down under the spray of water while she whimpered.  Easy-peasy!  But turns out clipping the nails is a lot more traumatizing for both of us.  I asked my father, thinking he had some clever dog trick, and he said his trick was to just take her to the groomers and make them do it.  Which is probably what I will give in and do.  Unless one of you has a brilliant idea?  Dog groomers aren’t superhuman!  Surely if they can do it, I can do it!

 

Now, question for you!  Pretty simple one, but also appropriate for Rani’s birthday:

 

Who is your favorite actress?

I’ve got several, for the up and coming ones today, Kriti Sonam.  For the established batch, Deepika barely edges out Anushka at the top of the pile.  For the early 2000s, it was Rani, but only because Kajol retired.  The closest I come to an overall winner is probably Kajol.  I just wish she had a longer and more challenging career!  Her 90s stuff is wonderful and varied and so on, but right when she was reaching the point of breaking out into art cinema, or having a whole serious big budget film built around her, she quit.

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93 thoughts on “Wednesday Watching Post: What Are You Reading and Watching and Thinking on Rani’s Birthday?

  1. Reading: Still on my Rex Stout orgy.

    Watching: Not much (see above). Decided to skip Raid, and try to actually watch the dvd’s I got from the library before they’re due back.

    Thinking: Lots of things that are not relevant to this blog. 🙂 The part that is relevant is: Sridevi was truly the Pan Indian Superstar. Not even Amitabh Bachchan had her status, because, while he might have been known all over India (the way Raj Kapoor, Dilip Kumar, and Dev Anand were known all over in the previous era), he didn’t actually have fan followings all over the country, the way Sridevi did. She actually was active in all the major film industries in India, and won them all. The only one she missed was the Bengali one. But no one else even came close. She is the best counterexample to Hindi film types thinking they alone represent all of India. And a corollary to that thought (this is really all coming because of your Tamil film post): Sridevi’s Hindi films are actually her weakest films. Her best work was in Tamil and Telugu. This is why I feel no need to watch her Hindi films, though I did see Lamhe.

    Oh, yeah, your question. Favorite actress, as in Hindi only? I don’t know that I really have a favorite from either the current era, or the 90’s one. But probably Juhi, Rani, and Priyanka, going chronologically, because I think all three are exceptional actors. And before the 90’s, probably Waheeda Rehman, again for her acting prowess.

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    • What are your favorite Priyanka performances? I just made a crack about her non-acting, except in Barfi, in everything I’ve seen of her. But the characters haven’t exactly been the best (Roma in Don is fun, but not much scope for acting).

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    • Agree about Sridevi. Both thoughts. Since I’ve been doing this dive into Telugu and Tamil and Malayalam for the first time after being buried in Hindi for 10 years, I’ve found lots of actors where I go “Hey! I’ve seen him in something!” like Nagarjuna or Prithviraj or Tabu going the other way. But there is no one who really dominated all the industries, who felt like an at home star in every place, instead of a special guest. And also this week I was looking something up and realized Himmatwala and Sadma came out the same year. Such a stark example of the kind of Sridevi the Hindi industry wanted and the kind they didn’t!

      Waheeda is an excellent choice for past actresses. One thing I like about her, similar to Sridevi, is that she did such a range. Plenty of silly movies with silly roles, and she did them perfectly, and of course her famous fabulous acting moments.

      On Wed, Mar 21, 2018 at 7:05 AM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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        • Kshana Kshanam is the Telugu Sridevi I have seen, I think it is fairly easy to find and it is fun, a kind of Hitchcock like twisty funny plot. For Tamil, there is really just SO MUCH. Moondram Pirai which was remade as Sadma would be a good one, except I couldn’t find it and ended up watching Sadma instead. So I guess just Sadma, which is technically in Hindi but feels Tamil.

          On Wed, Mar 21, 2018 at 9:21 AM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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          • Govinda Govinda is the second film Ram Gopal Varma did with Sridevi (and Nagarjuna). I haven’t seen it. but many recommend it. There are lots of “regular” Telugu movies that Sridevi starred in, too many to list off the top of my head. You can just search for Sridevi Telugu/Tamil movies on Youtube and find them. Oka Radha Iddaru Krishnulu was a really fun movie with Sridevi and Kamal Hassan (Telugu), but I don’t think there’s a good print on Youtube. You can look at other sources, too. She did several films with both ANR and NTR. I’ve just been watching some scenes from one called Bobbili Puli with the latter pair, where Sridevi seems to be a lawyer, and looks interesting.

            Let me recommend a fun movie from her younger days — Bala Bharatham. It’s the story of the Kauravas and the Pandavas when they were all kids. It’s taken from the Mahabharata (i.e., they didn’t invent the story) so if you’re familiar with the story, you’ll recognize the adult characters, even if you’re not familiar with the details of the kids’ stories. Sridevi doesn’t have a whole lot to do — she’s one girl among 105 boys, after all — but she does have some songs and dances and is quite effervescent. It’s on youtube, don’t know about subtitles. Oh, yeah, this is a Telugu movie, too. People really do need to check out her child acting days to see how she stood out even then.

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  2. Reading: still the continuous stream of absurd and horrible news being generated by 45 and the gang. This week Cambridge Analytica and Facebook featuring heavily.

    Watching: in an example of synchronicity, hubby suggested we re-watch the Nero Wolfe Mystery series, so we’re about a third of the way through.

    Thinking–politics, work, Shah Rukh, kid, gotta find my next job (ugh), Easter (yay!), other Hindi movies/actors, work, family, politics. On a loop. 🙂

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    • I like that “kid” comes after Shahrukh. Good to have your priorities straight.

      What are your Easter traditions? In my family, when I was growing up, our tradition was that we made a “nest” for the Easter bunny out off the clothes we were going to wear on Easter the night before, and then when we woke up there would be candy and little presents. And one year, plastic hangers (I suspect a mad dash to the 24 hour store and a purchase of whatever was there). Now that I am a grown up, my new Easter tradition is that is to put all my winter clothes away and bring out my summer clothes. I have to do it sometime, and it feels right to do it as a kind of welcome of spring.

      On Wed, Mar 21, 2018 at 7:27 AM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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      • Haha–my thoughts tend to be circular, not linear, so from some points in the circle she comes first. 😉

        Easter is my favorite holiday! It is also when I miss my maternal Grandma and Grandpa the most. We used to spend Easter on their farm, and traditions were–if any of her kids or grandkids had given anything up for Lent, Grandma would have some of that ready on awakening–so for me that would usually be Coke and chocolate (I often gave up caffeine in all forms). Then off to church where we would belt out, in harmony, our favorite Easter Hyms: He Lives! or Christ the Lord is Risen Today. A good Easter service would have both!

        Then, back to the farm, and Grandma would hurry us through the traditional family pictures, in the constant wind, in front of whatever flowering bush had the most green showing. As soon as the last click was clicked, she’d be running into the house to change out of her church clothes and finish Easter dinner. The women and girls would run to help. (Ahem.) After eating and washing up (again, women and girls, despite my feminist aunt’s occasional attempts to get the men to join in), we’d have an Easter egg hunt for the little kids. Then afternoon coma/watching a random movie/adults napping while kids zip around on sugar highs. Cold supper of whatever leftovers anyone felt like eating.

        Now, Easter is at my mom’s. Easter morning treats center on my kid and my cousin’s kids if they are there. Somewhere along the way a pinata got added to the tradition of the egg hunt. The food is good, the church service is good, the company is good. My mom and aunt–still with assistance from the girls including me–cook up an amazing meal. Windy post-church pic now takes place in front of my mom’s lilac bush. But I miss my Grandparents and the farm!

        One last thing–church music has changed and now the focus is on a looooooooong cantata by the choir. Cutting back on communal hymns. So, if He Lives! gets left off the service, we sing it as a family walking from church to my mom’s house. 🙂

        Thanks for asking! That was a fun walk down memory lane, and now I’m feeling so nostalgic. Glad I’m working from home today thanks to the snow. Will bake something to soothe my heart.

        I love your tradition of switching up clothes–what a nice way to celebrate renewal of life!

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        • Your Easter sounds way more fun and elaborate than our Easter! Our church used to do a service in the park most Easters, and it was usually cold and gloomy, which made me unhappy because I had to wear a coat and no one could see my pretty dress. Beyond that, it was just the clothes nest in the morning and that was it. There were a few easter egg hunts when we were little, and if we were at my Dad’s parents, we played the egg fight game with breakfast, and of course dying eggs the night before and eating them on easter, but it wasn’t like a big big holiday for our family.

          On Wed, Mar 21, 2018 at 8:39 AM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  3. Oh–re:dog’s nails–please do take her to a groomer. I know it’s expensive, but worth it for you and doggy. I was so stubborn about it with our dog, but she hates getting her nails clipped so badly that we ran the risk of hurting her by holding her down to clip them. Groomers aren’t super human but they do have special equipment–restraints that hold dogs in place safely for example–and some of them have a magical touch, firm, fast, and calming.

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    • I have to do laundry tonight next to the Petco, I’ll stop in and see what their hours are and if they have deals. My dad said their groomer has a $5 once a week deal, but I don’t want to go all the way over there if I can find something closer.

      On Wed, Mar 21, 2018 at 7:31 AM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  4. Among the old timers, Asha Parekh was the ultimate sassy girl long before Hema,Priety,Parineeti and the rest.Oh and Sharmila too.She’s delightful.Moving on to the 80s Poonam Dhillon was the ultimate modern girl -college educated,wearing smart clothes, swearing in English (mildly) and shocking the sensibilities out of middle class India.Then comes Juhi who really has twinkling eyes.She’s a natural at comedy.Moving on to everybody’s favorite Kajol.Kareena had great potential but was vastly underused.And she seems to have no complaints either.Among the current generation Parineeti Chopra was quite good in her initial 3 films but fizzled out.Same with Sonakshi.One terrific performance in Lootera and then nothing!As for birthday girl Rani, she constantly surprises me.Just when I’m ready to dismiss her she’ll come out with a different adorable character and performance.But in between she does a lot of boring roles.

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    • I really need to watch more Sharmila, I’ve seen her in a handful of things, but not enough to really appreciate all she can do. She was wonderful in An Evening in Paris, but I think that and a handful of others are the only films of hers I have seen.

      On Wed, Mar 21, 2018 at 7:43 AM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  5. Favourite actress?
    I’m not sure I have one in hindi. Maybe Vidya Balan. I know who I don’t like, and who I avoid, but the rest of actresses, Rani included, are neutral. But in non-hindi my favourite is Sai Pallavi. I think she is the only women I like to the point I must watch every new movie she does.

    Thinking – about Spring and vacation.
    Reading – nothing because I’m busy with my cross-stitch projects
    Watching – have seen 2 movies last week.
    First Aattakatha – about white girl who comes to Kerala to learn Kathakali and malayalam. I was so excited when I found this movie. Finally a white girl, who has other interest beside chasing the men, and she is learning malayalam, and her teacher is Vineeth, who I admire because he is fantastic dancer (and he was in my first malayalam film ever years ago). So everything seemed good, but it was so weird. The german actress can’t act at all. She was there only to smile or look sad (or smoking cigarettes, because white women always have bad habits). Vineeth was good, and the other girl too, but there wasn’t chemistry and the story was so odd. But really odd. And I discovered Kathakali is not my cup of tea. When the movie ended I was like: WTF?

    The other movie was tamil Adhe Kangal, and it was very good. I enjoy it a lot. Good story (little predictable, but interesting and funny), good actors (it was about blind chef and the guy was so good I thought he is really blind), and the most important badass female character (can’t say more because I don’t want to spoil ).

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    • Sai Pallavi is a good choice, I will be so interested to see where her career goes. Because it seems like you aren’t the only person excited about her that way, willing to see anything if she is in it.

      Now I am trying to think of a good White Girl movie and the best I can come up with are Salaam-E-Ishq and that one little plot, and the tiny part in Bangalore Days. From the other side of things, Bunty Aur Babli has the best bad white people! That is, the “buy the Taj” couple feels actually accurate to horrible white tourists instead of just lazy stereotypes.

      On Wed, Mar 21, 2018 at 7:50 AM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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      • It’s a really long shot that anyone can find this movie, but in the early 1980’s, there was a Telugu movie called Padamati Sandhya Ragam, which was mostly (95%) shot in the U.S., about a Telugu family which emigrates there and their daughter falling in love with an American white guy (I say “white guy” because there’s also a black guy in the story; guess who gets the girl). Anyway, it was quite an interesting and enjoyable movie (the heroine and crew were all A-listers from India). But I doubt that a version with subtitles exists. And of course, it’s not a “white girl” movie, but a “white guy” movie, but still.

        What about Socha Na Tha for the “white girl” movie?

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          • Padamati Sandhya Ragam looks interesting. I wonder if today a similar film could be done.

            And the other movie that seems to have white girl in it is Marigold with Salman Khan. Somebody has seen it? I don’t know if it’s more american or indian film, and if the girl gets the boy 🙂

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          • Ha, Angie, I’m surprised that I forgot about Marigold. I’ve not only seen it, I even have the dvd. Not that’s what you can call a true “white girl” Hindi movie! Not only is she the titular character, the whole film is her story.

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        • I’m blanking, is there a white girl in Socha Na Tha? His girlfriend is Christian, but I think desi. Love Aaj Kal though has a decent white girl in it. Not much to her character, but at least she is a good person.

          On Wed, Mar 21, 2018 at 8:21 AM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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          • Sara, Ranbir’s girl friend in Rajneeti is a white girl. She stands up to him when necessary and does not let him sway her with his so-called explanations about “only doing this to protect my family”.

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  6. I’ve been sick for almost 2 weeks now, so just relaxing and binge watching this Australian soap called Packed to the Rafters. When this was aired in India 4-5 years back, they got Karan Johar to promote it, with the tagline “When all else fails, there’s family”. And the family in the show is so similar to Indian families. Which got me thinking, are Aussies more conservative than Americans? There’s a lot more family bonding and banter. I’m basing all of this on just this show. Even the neighbors are sweet and helpful, something I haven’t seen in American shows.
    And coming to your question, I don’t have a favorite actress as such now. I like Kangana post Queen and Tanu Weds Manu returns, Deepika in Cocktail and Yeh Jawaani, Priyanka in Bajirao….so I guess it depends on the movie. Down south, Parvathy is great and so consistent. I liked Sai Pallavi in Premam and Kali. Samantha can act, if give a proper role.

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    • I forgot another southern actress I always enjoy, one who stands out not just for her acting but her personality, Nithya Menon.

      On Wed, Mar 21, 2018 at 8:34 AM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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    • There must be something in Australia, because even their Masterchef is so much better and friendly than all other editions I have seen. In italian version, they almost don’t show the cooking but focus on people talking bad about other contestants. Similar in american edition. Only scandals count. In Australian Masterchef there wasn’t one person talking bad about another. I’m not saying they are best friends, maybe there were some quarells, but it wasn’t shown. Cooking and good atmosphere were the most important. And the judges were delightful, not like the others who only wait to offend and laught at people.

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      • All I know about Australia is our Australian commentators here. I think we have 3 of them, and they are all LOVELY. Here’s the really interesting thing I realized recently, I’ve got 3 Australians who comment regularly, loads of Americans, a couple Canadians, and no straight up UK people at all! I wonder why? I know I have readers from there because I can track the IP addresses, and yet none of them comment.

        On Wed, Mar 21, 2018 at 1:16 PM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  7. Reading: About Cambridge Analytica and Facebook which directly affects my work since I’m a social media manager. It’s been a stressful week because I don’t know how this will all shake out for my job and also, you know, for our democracy.

    Watching: Nothing because I’m too distracted this week. I tried to start Jo Jeeta Wohi Sikandar but I stopped because I want to give it my full attention, which isn’t happening this week.

    Thinking: I’m guesting on a Bollywood podcast tomorrow and I’m excited and hoping I don’t sound like an idiot since I’m so new to all this.

    Favorite actresses: Vidya, Kangana and Rani, in that order. I like Anushka but don’t feel like the parts I’ve seen her in really give me a sense of her range. Madhuri is my favorite movie star but not actress, if that makes sense. I haven’t seen enough of the older folks to get a sense for them but Nargis was wonderful in Shree 420. The only actress I downright dislike is Kareena. She has a shrill, brittle quality that puts me right off and I don’t think she has much range either.

    I have a feeling Sridevi is going to shoot to the top of my favorite actress list once I see more of her films. I’ve only seen English Vinglish so far but she is seriously wonderful in that. I keep trying to bring myself to see Chandni but I hate Rishi Kapoor, so… I found Mr. India on Einthusan so another reason to pony up the $25 for a subscription.

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    • So exciting that you will be on a Podcast! Also, mention me if you want to be nice! Or not, up to you.

      Kareena is really better than she gives herself credit for, if that makes sense. Most of the time she seems to take parts that don’t challenge her so she can take it easy. But in the few roles where she really tries, she can do a lot. My hope is that Vaani di Wedding is going to be one of those.

      On Wed, Mar 21, 2018 at 9:37 AM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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      • I recorded last night and gave you a shoutout at the very end. Not sure it will make it in depending on how it’s edited but I’ll let you know when it comes out. It was so much fun to spend an hour talking about Hindi films since I never get a chance to do that in my off-line life.

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    • Oh, and you have seen at least one classic actress, Waheeda Rahman who Moimeme and I were talking about played Madhavan’s mother in Rang De Basanti.

      On Wed, Mar 21, 2018 at 9:37 AM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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    • I have been told that they are skiing in Zus, Austria. Pooja Dadalani first posted skiing pictures on her IG account a couple of days ago. And on the Day 3, It sounds like SRK humming/singing Blue Danube waltz in one of her videos.

      As for the NYC shooting, I have been told possibly May/June time frame BUT may move back to April to speed up process and finish to start another project in September.

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  8. Limiting to only Hindi-Juhi Chawla.QSQT is the first Hindi movie I remember watching.I rewatched it for the nth time last week. She’s still charming, her smile still adorable & her performance still honest. I don’t think there’s any movie of hers I did not enjoy.She acted in Malayalam opposite two of the biggest stars & easily overshadowed them. Her lip sync, expressions everything was spot on. Few years back I watched Gulaab Gang. She was devilish and so good in her bad-ass avatar. Even the KwK episode with Madhuri, she was at her wittiest & candid best against Madhuri’s polite perfectness.I loved Manisha Koirala for her haunting beauty & vulnerable performances.I know that Rani is a very very good actress. She can carry any kind of role-gritty, goofy,romantic-anything. But there’s something about her that I don’t like(voice, smile-something). So I don’t avoid her but I’m not very keen on her either. Amongst the current lot, Priyanka made me sit-up & notice in Aitraaz first, then in Salaame Ishq, Barfi, Bajirao & her voice is sooooo sexy. I would love to see her in a funny/goofy role though. My problem with Hindi heroines of the current lot is that they all seem like the perfect,glitzy porcelain dolls on display & I can’t think of them as real people who can carry/convey emotions truthfully. It doesn’t help that they often appear onscreen also that way with hardly any depth to their roles. There will be that one-odd offbeat, non-glamorous role for every heroine which will be used for the ‘I have done diverse roles’ narrative.
    Talking about senior actresses, do you think the husband’s filmy connections have a bearing in how a married heroine’s career progresses. I don’t see Madhuri, Juhi, Karishma getting continuous opportunities, films made for them in their post-marriage career unlike a Sridevi, Rani, Kajol, Vidya. Ash had two films that had her in the central role in her comeback. Her role in ADHM can be called an extended cameo & seems Fanny Khan is also a brief role. What’s your take on the status of Hindi heroines after marriage? I’m hoping that Anushka will set the trend that it does not matter, but she’s still young & times are changing.

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    • I agree on the connections part, especially with Rani. It helps that you’re married to the head honcho of one of the biggest production houses in India. Hence she could plan the schedule of Hichki the way she wanted.
      She also got many stars to promote it.

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      • I think the schedule part of it is probably the most important, with Kajol for instance I don’t feel like she gets a huge advantage from her husband’s production house EXCEPT that every other or every third film can be made on her schedule, which means she can work twice as much as actresses who have to try to squeeze their films in around everything else in their life. For Rani, even simple things like being able to carpool to work with her husband and film everything on the Yash Raj studio lot instead of having to go on location would make a big difference.

        I’m not thinking about actress difficulties really, I am just thinking about working mother difficulties. I work for a family company myself, and one of the owner’s wives is another employee, and she has the ability to do things like leave for half an hour so she can pick up her kids, or work from home if one of the kids is sick, and that is enough to make her working full time viable.

        On Wed, Mar 21, 2018 at 10:40 AM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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          • I really don’t know. My impression is that filming has gotten easier as the years have gone by, on some other post Moimeme was just talking about how Sridevi said in an interview that she used to work 4 shifts a day, 6am to 3am. I think that was the extreme, but not unheard of for the top male and female stars. Part of the reason top male and female stars are making fewer movies now is because that schedule was so difficult to keep up. But, and again this is just my impression, I think the expectations of working on a film would still be difficult to balance without at least one full time parent to back you up at home if you are a parent. Ajay seems to be a very involved father, often taking the kids to film sets with him, which I suspect is part of why Kajol is able to pick up more work than other married heroines. Madhuri, I think, does more TV hosting type jobs, which are much easier to schedule and coordinate, no location shooting and lots of hinky editing to work around mistakes, and make it appear that she is on set more than she us (for instance, a bunch of canned reaction shots that they can just throw in to make it appear she is present).

            Beyond the filming schedule, there is also just having your stardom as your top priority. Doing every little thing to stay on top, going to all the parties to make nice and every interview show and award show and on and on and on, I can’t imagine it would be easy to do without making it your top priority.

            And then the big thing, unless you are really a Top actress, the expectation would be that your schedule would revolve around the star. So if you wanted to coordinate the outdoor shooting around your kids’ school break, but he isn’t ready, your whole schedule would go kaput. So a top actor would have an easier time being a working parent than a top actress. Or a less than top actor too I guess, I saw a chilling interview with Ayushmann a few years back where he explained that his wife and kids are in Delhi and he sees them once every few months!!!!!

            On Wed, Mar 21, 2018 at 11:12 AM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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          • My impression (not knowing anything near as much as other people here) is that if there is Grandma, she would also be the responsibility of “Mom” in some ways. Indian family structure is really set up to put the pressure on the middle “householder” hinge more than anyone else. It works for both genders (I believe) so while women would have a lot of pressure and responsibility at home (take care of the kids, take care of the house, take care of younger unmarried relatives and older relatives who live with you), it is not unusual for the man to be working so hard to support all the various relatives that he literally misses his children’s entire childhood. Going overseas and sending money home and coming for visits every few years, or working 20 hour days on film sets 7 days a week, would not raise eyebrows. Another reason that film is a family business, for a lot of the actors the only time they could see their children was if they were working together, a lot of the “child stars” were just kids on school vacation and this was the only way they could spend time with Dad.

            On Wed, Mar 21, 2018 at 2:48 PM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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          • that’s indeed true as was your observation on the changing priorities in the earlier comment. I recently gave up my job(nothing related to films)because of the things you mentioned in the above two comments🙂

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          • Luckily, my grandfather is still alive and my sister doesn’t have kids yet, so I get to still be the youngest generation while my parents do all the work. My poor parents on the other hand have been the middle generation for about 40 years now and they are WORN OUT. Maybe once I get my real dog, that will be the youngest generation and I will be in the middle and my parents can just come over and be honored and pampered and play with the dog.

            On Wed, Mar 21, 2018 at 9:03 PM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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          • I still just don’t like her! My real dog is out there somewhere, I can wait until she shows up.

            On Wed, Mar 21, 2018 at 11:09 PM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  9. In the 90s, I loved Kajol and Karisma. Karisma was able to mix in both – she did movies like Fiza, Zubeidaa and also did the fun stuff in Judwaa . I loved her in that movie – my fav growing up. I didn’t like Kareena much – she was probably more talented but quite lazy. She also feels like someone who signs on a movie depending on her costar
    But my all time favorite actress will always be Shobana – she just could do anything – comedy, drama, romance, be the center of the move (Manichitratazhu, Innale) or just be a part of the goings on like Thenmavinkombathu. I loved her in a movie called Pakshe – with Mohanlal. They truly were the golden couple.

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    • I forgot about Shobhana! It’s been a while since I watched one of her movies, I should try to track some more down for next week’s Tamil.

      On Wed, Mar 21, 2018 at 12:16 PM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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    • I looooovvv Shobhana. But her comic timing wasn’t as good as Revathi’s. Revathi was slightly more natural too. But I love Shobhana’s costumes. The 80s & 90s heroines, including the Hindi heroines are often ridiculed for their costumes but Shobhana was a class apart. I was watching Innale & was thinking I want her wardrobe from the movie even today. Amala is another actress who had great wardrobe & a good mix of Shobhana & Revathi’s acting. She could be the village belle,the city girl roaming discos or the working woman. Only she couldn’t pull off classical dancing as well as those two.

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  10. Reading: Boring textbooks basically studying for my exams and your blog ofcourse!
    Watching: Not any movies at the moment, I will after I’m done my finals probably something from your recommended list.
    Thinking: Panicking over my exams, the stress and anxiety is killing me but your blog does makes me feel better 🙂
    Favorite Actress: Anushka Shetty!

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  11. Favorite actresses: Rani, Sai Pallavi and Nithya Menon. Sai is also someone I would see any movie she was in.

    In the last week, I saw Raid which was meh for me. I also watched Akira on Netflix, and it was okay, but NOT ENOUGH Amit Sadh. Not nearly enough.

    Mostly, I’ve been reading a fantastic adventure steampunk romance called The Kraken King by Meljean Brook. It’s the fourth in a series, but you could read it as a stand alone, but you’d get more out of it reading the other books. Evidently the author released it chapter by chapter as a serial, but I’m lucky in that it’s all finished and I can just devour it chapter after chapter. https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/15788727-the-kraken-king

    I didn’t think anything could top the first in the series, The Iron Duke, but this one is fantastic.

    Current Easter tradition is that I host lunch for the whole family plus several friends. It’s an easy one as we get Honey baked ham, and my mom makes the mashed potatoes, etc. Even though my kids are older, I still get them Easter candy. I miss dyeing eggs now that my boys are grown up. It’s a busy weekend as we also have Passover Seder the two nights before Easter this year.

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  12. I’ve recently watched Arjun Reddy, Dhobi Ghat, and QQ Single, and plan to watch Tiger ZH tonight on Einthusan. AR was mind blowing, a Devdas story, but more urban hip cool like Dev D. DG had good performances from Aamir & esp. Prateik (unf Monica wasn’t good, and she’s the lead), I find QQS hard to follow, perhaps I need to give it my full attention. Both actors played their characters very well though. All three movies are about difficult eccentric men lol.

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    • Thinking about the state of American politics, watching rachel maddow episodes on a loop. And also the uptick gun violence coverage, despite gun violence having been a real problem in usa for decades, esp fueled by the War On Drugs.

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      • Go back to watching Ranishek fanvids! It will cleanse your mind 🙂

        Or, if things are really bad, go back and review my dog update posts. This morning I went into the living room to find her curled up completely hidden by a blanket with only her little nose peaking out.

        Final guaranteed stress buster and cheer up: The fact that DeNiro through Anupam Kher a surprise birthday party and they are both just tickled pink:

        On Wed, Mar 21, 2018 at 4:26 PM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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    • I was going to say “when are we going to get a movie about a difficult eccentric woman?” But that’s exactly what Piku was. And Tumhari Sulu (well, she wasn’t super difficult, but she was eccentric). And Cocktail. We could still have more, but at least they are there, which is something.

      On Wed, Mar 21, 2018 at 4:23 PM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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      • It’s interesting how in India, and in the American South with Country music, the guy is manic or drugged or eccentric artist dream guy or playboy, needing the love of a stable woman to ground him. This is the allure of Ranveer among his fans. But in Hollywood, it’s the woman who is neurotic or manic pixie dream girl who breathes life into the depressed artist or teen or midlife crisis male.

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        • That’s really interesting, you are right. I can think of various counter-examples, but the norm is the magical eccentric woman who shakes up the man’s life. I wonder, do you think it all started to shift with Howard Hawks? I think of his films as the definitive “wacky woman shakes up boring guy” movies. Or is it just that Hollywood is increasingly dominated by the behind the screen talent, the ones more likely to be the shy guy who dreams of a woman changing his life rather than the movie star eccentrics and geniuses? I know today whenever I see something with the magical wonderful woman and the bookish nerdy guy, I am just picturing the bookish nerdy screenwriter writing out his fantasy.

          On Wed, Mar 21, 2018 at 4:36 PM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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        • Imtiaz Ali made a whole movie on drugged, maniac, eccentric artist being doomed because he did not get the love of his life.He also made a movie about boring, out of luck corporate guy being shown the path to live by the fast talking, impulsive woman on train in Jab We Met & that was the basic premise in JHMS too rt? In Tamasha again, the eccentric, artsy hero gets the love of a stable woman & is redeemed(for a change). Imtiaz is the wholesale dealer for eccentricity in Hindi films. And did you mean Ranveer’s or Ranbir’s appeal among fans?

          Liked by 1 person

  13. I’m now reading an article about Sshivada, the actress I liked in Adhe Kangal , the title is: M’town new alpha woman. LOL I already love her. And her next movie will be with Unni Mukundan!

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  14. I just saw this..would have liked some of the dialogues & reactions to be little more subtle Would want to see if this is just for Hitchki or if Rani will keep the image of everyday working woman from now on.

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    • I would be interested to see if this is part of a slow move towards making her the face of YRF. She is already doing things like visiting the Kapoors to express condolences and hosting the massive Adira birthday party on the studio grounds. It would be neat if the largest studio in Indian film was generally represented by a woman. And I’ve been wondering how they would handle that public face issue since Yashji died, he was always the one who went around to things and took care of the social aspect. Uday’s there, but I think Rani would be better.

      On Wed, Mar 21, 2018 at 11:27 PM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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      • Does a film production company really need a public face? The films they make & the stars of those films will be the obvious faces rt? They will also have official spokesperson, press releases & those kind of public marketing tools. Yes, Aditya Chopra can delegate the courtesy calls to Rani. I would think it adds more value to Rani’s personal brand value that she has the backing of a huge studio.

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        • It doesn’t “need” a public face, but it seemed like that’s how Yash Raj worked, Aditya behind the scenes slowly taking on terrifying amounts of power, and Yashji out in front making nice with people so no one noticed how much power they had. Plus, Yash Raj likes to do those big premieres and things as part of their promotions, you need someone to officially host them.

          On Thu, Mar 22, 2018 at 7:19 AM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  15. Favorite actresses: Konkona, Vidya, Anushka, and for the older generation Sharmila and Madhubala.

    Thinking: Ugh, I don’t want to go back to work.

    Watching: I watched Love per Square Foot, the Netflix movie from India, mostly because I thought it would have a quasi-romantic decorating montage, which is my favorite thing. It does not, but what it does have is Supriya Pathak and Ratna Pathak Shah together, as the mothers of the Hindu boy and the Christian girl respectively. And they are just wonderful and I wish the whole movie could have been about them. But the rest of the movie was perfectly pleasant, except for some regressive ideas about consent. (The whole “he was too drunk to remember if he had sex” plot device needs to die now). Also, why do Indian movies make a huge big deal about the fact that a character is Christian? It’s like every surface in the heroine’s home has a crucifix on it. The older Agneepath is the same way; his Christian love interest lives in a place that looks like a church.

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    • I was going to make fun of the cross on every surface decorating, and then I remembered I am in a bit of a glass house situation considering how many SRK pictures I have.

      On Thu, Mar 22, 2018 at 7:11 AM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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      • Oh there is a fascinating answer to this! Well, I find it fascinating. The Portuguese were the first Europeans to be given a permanent piece of land in India, Goa, and they were there until the 60s when the Goans finally managed to throw them out and join the rest of India. So there is a strong Portuguese Catholic tradition in that area, you will notice Christians in Hindi films tend to be named “Anthony” or “Maria”, stuff like that.

        On the other hand, down in Kerala, the legend is that the Apostle Thomas arrived there in 52 AD and brought Christianity. It’s so long ago that there are various evidences either way, but at the very very latest, Christianity came to Kerala in 900 AD.

        And then there were the Missionaries during the Colonial era and beyond of a whole assortment of religions (Tom Alter, the best white man actor in Indian film, was the child of Methodist missionaries, born and raised in India as were his parents before him).

        But the short answer is: most Indian Christians are Catholic, either Portuguese influenced or Kerala influenced.

        On Fri, Mar 23, 2018 at 9:34 AM, dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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        • Um, no. In Goa, yes, Catholicism is the dominant religion. But in Kerala the original Christians are called “Syrian Christians”, and am not sure they have much in common with present day Catholics (they may be closer to the Eastern Orthodox Church). In addition, there are a whole bunch of newer Christians, courtesy of American evangelicals, who are various shades of Protestants. In fact, most of the people who have converted in the past three decades, say, have been converted by these evangelicals. One of my friends from Karnataka was a Presbyterian minister, and they have a large presence there, as they do in the Northeastern states where Christianity is the dominant religion (again due to modern missionaries). Of course there are Catholics all over, not just in Goa, but I just wanted to point out that Protestants are also pretty prevalent. Plus there are also Jehovah’s Witnesses. Catholics may be the largest Christian group (having had a head start :)), but I wouldn’t say most Indian Christians are Catholics.

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          • It should be “most people who got converted in the last FIVE decades … ” My sense of time is really getting warped. I just realized that “three decades” essentially means since 1990, which is much later than what I meant.

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