Monday Morning Questions: What do You Want to Ask Me the Last Week in February?

Happy Monday! I survived the weekend! Even without a dog! Although I did have the idea of a dog, since I spent all of yesterday driving around looking for it.

As always, you can ask me anything you want from the personal (“why still no dog?”) to the specific and factual (“are there Indian movies with dogs?”) to the general discussion (“dogs: good or bad?”)

Now, question for you! I ignored it entirely so fill me in, what did I miss from the Oscars?

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32 thoughts on “Monday Morning Questions: What do You Want to Ask Me the Last Week in February?

  1. What do you look for in a dog? We want a pet after we immigrate to our long term home. I had a pit/lab mix before but it was a bit more than I could handle. I would probably want a somewhat grown and trained dog instead of a puppy, despite the overwhelming cuteness.
    Deep down, I know I’m a cat person, but dogs are incredible, just need more space and attention.

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    • I’m looking for a dog between 25 and 35 pounds with a good apartment personality (doesn’t bark, low energy). Mostly I’m just looking for a dog I like! Which is what makes it so hard, I have to meet so many dogs before I find one I like.

      On Mon, Feb 25, 2019 at 7:26 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  2. Did you see the Kesri trailer? Seems like Bollywood is finally getting Sikhs right, but Iā€™m still conflicted about it. What do you think of it?

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    • I didn’t, I am so sick of war movies that I didn’t even feel up to watching the trailer. When are we going to get our light romances????

      On Mon, Feb 25, 2019 at 8:29 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  3. The trailer for Notebook from Salman Khan premiered a few days ago, the one based on a Korean movie. Looks nice and interesting especially with newcomers.

    As for the Oscars: Best Picture to Green Book, Best Actor to Rami Malek (so happy for that!), Best Actress Olivia Coleman, Best Costume (as well as bunch of production stuff) to Black Panther and a lot fo the music stuff to Bohemian Rhapsody and the best song went to A Star Is Born. Then Alfonso Couran got 3 oscars and Spike Lee got best adaptive screenplay from BlacKkKlansman. There were other stuff, like the Queen band performing and other deserved wins which I can’t name at the top of my head right now.

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    • Another Korean remake? Salman or one of his business people must have a good connection over there.

      Thanks for the Oscars run down! Sounds like there wasn’t anything super exciting or remarkable.

      On Mon, Feb 25, 2019 at 8:46 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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    • Oh, oh I’m excited! I only read about this film, and the worst things: that Salman casted this Pranutan even without seeing her etc and I was expecting something terrible (another Hero or Loveyatri) but now I saw the trailer, and I really liked it. Looks like my kind of film!

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  4. I didn’t watch the Oscars but my Twitter timeline is mainly excited that 1. Olivia Colman won best actress and 2. her stunning gown had pockets! They are also a bit pissed off that Green Book won best picture because it, like many movies about race in the US, centers a white savior figure instead of the man who actually developed the book or the Black motorists who needed the book to help them avoid discrimination and violence as they traveled. I haven’t seen the movie, so have no idea if this is the case, but it seems to be a prevailing view among African-American commentators.

    No questions. My brain is too foggy. Just hoping you have a good week and wishing you good luck in the doggy search!

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    • I was a little surprised about Green Book winning too, because I had also run across some of the backlash. And just plain feeling it is old-fashioned, to have another “white and black people can be friends!” movie at the Oscars. Of course, it could also be a brilliant groundbreaking film in ways that are only apparent when you watch the whole thing.

      And thank you for the doggy luck! I have to do more exploring next weekend, maybe it’s time to go out to the far suburbs? The Chicago dogs have some steep competition for owners.

      On Mon, Feb 25, 2019 at 9:03 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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        • Gonna keep trying though! Thinking about hitting up another shelter tonight, I really prefer shelters to rescues because I get to meet the dog in a nice low pressure way before putting in an application, and rescues you have to semi-commit before you even meet the dog. Like speed dating versus mail order bride.

          On Mon, Feb 25, 2019 at 12:18 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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    • When someone asks for them! Is that something you would like?

      It’s hard with Salman, because he works so much and his movies are so uneven, I don’t even know what the standard list would be. Although I guess that makes the post even more necessary, so I can say “out of the large number of C level Salman movies, these are the 10 worth watching.

      On Mon, Feb 25, 2019 at 11:06 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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      • I would love it! But obviously I do not want to create additional work for you. I was asking only because I thought were already planning on doing it, since in your Amir post you had mentioned that you were plannning to count down all the Khans and I was really excited to see Salman’s list for precisely the reasons you stated above. He is all over the place, so it would be interesting to see which ones would make your list.

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        • I love these posts! They are nice kind of mental game challenge without deep thought that gives me a little break. I will take any excuse to work on them.

          On Mon, Feb 25, 2019 at 11:53 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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          • Sorry for intruding but I would love to read a post on Salman movies that are outside the normal list! Most of the time, I read that Salman seemed to be playing similar roles post Wanted, though this is not really true (to me at least). Maybe this might be helpful.
            Have recently found your blog by random search and have been a silent visitor. I love reading your posts including the comments section! This is my 1st comment šŸ™‚

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          • Welcome! And thank you for commenting! I actually started a Salman post, it should be going up a little later today. Looking forward to hearing what you think of it!

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  5. Uggh at the oscars last night.

    Period End of Sentence wins best documentary, about implementing the Padman machine in Indian villages… And everyone on stage to accept the award is white.

    The only Black Panther televised win is for original score, and so the only televised win for black panther is for the one white guy on the crew. And he’s lily white in that early 70s long silky hair gentle personality sort of way.

    Green Book wins and a sea of white people flood the stage, except for the 3 black actors in the film. And the director praises Viggo Mortensen repeatedly, meanwhile barely mentioning acting powerhouses – and previous Oscar winners – like Octavia Spencer and Maharshala Ali.

    Stark contrast from when Moonlight won and a sea of diversity flooded the stage (which itself was a stark contrast to the flood of white people from lala land leaving the stage).

    Two steps forward, one step back. Means a net of one step forward, at least. Though it kinda felt like last night the industry was saying “ok we’ll give you your stories, but we’ll still be the ones telling your stories… It’s still our industry”.

    Good news is in the Best Director category. In the last decade the only WASP Male to win was Tom Hooper for The Kings Speech. But at least that was for a British film and a British production, so makes sense that he’d be a WASP. So the “3 Amigos” continue to dominate the best director category, winning 5 out of 10 times. Cuaron’s Roma, like Gully Boy, is an immersive experience, a wonderful exercise in world building, though focusing on fewer characters.

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    • Period End of Sentence is on Netflix now, and I have been avoiding watching it, although it would probably be an interesting contrast with Padman. The whole idea of these LA teenagers learning about periods in India and “helping” people there and then making a documentary about it, bleh! Especially if it is based primarily on the Padman guy who I have less and less faith in, especially since he seems like someone who is very good at giving the Global West what they want in terms of heartwarming stories and easy solutions that don’t cause any discomfort to those in power.

      And hey, the desi won best actor, right?

      On Mon, Feb 25, 2019 at 12:59 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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      • He’s Egyptian not Desi, but so was Omar Sharrif. Let’s see if HW gives him another role, or if this is a one off.

        Olivia Coleman, I think she split the difference in a strong Best Actress field and marginally came out ahead. But she’s clearly got a wry wit… Easily the best acceptance speech of the night, in an engaging entertaining way. A star was born.

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        • Netflix must be thrilled, her winning just in time for her to headline The Crown next season.

          And I feel obligated to mention every time Omar Sharrif turns up, also a Bridge expert? It’s just the strangest second life career, going from being the sexy “exotic” movie star to being the guy who writes the Bridge problems for the newspaper.

          On Mon, Feb 25, 2019 at 1:19 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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          • It was like Siddanth as MC Sher…. A star was literally born overnight. I now have watch The Favorite and catch up on The Crown, just for her.

            So cool about Omar Sharif. Did not know that! Brains + Beauty = killer combo! Makes sense that he would have to pursue a second career though. He was probably more Famous than Rich. Maybe endorsement gigs in the middle east saw him through.

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          • Look, he designed a Bridge computer game! https://download.cnet.com/Omar-Sharif-Bridge-for-Windows-10/3000-18516_4-77564960.html

            Oh, and for Olivia Coleman, you should also check out Broadchurch! that’s where I first noticed her, it’s a standard limited series British murder mystery, but her performance and character are wonderful. Really the whole series is well-made and well-performed.

            On Mon, Feb 25, 2019 at 1:33 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  6. Ram Charan’s Vinaya Vidheya Rama is now on Amazon Prime. I didn’t plan to watch it, but I read this thread on twitter and now I’m tempted:

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    • I talked to Josh back when I was working on my master’s thesis, and he was super nice and knowledgable, so I would trust his opinion.

      On Mon, Feb 25, 2019 at 2:48 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  7. Have you ever rewatched Zero or Thugs?

    I rewatched Zero and then watched Thugs for the first time… back to back at home last week one night.

    Before I started Zero, I put myself a Wes Anderson frame of mind. Then I honestly enjoyed the movie, and it kept me engaged. Really, with SRK starting the movie as a French speaking cowboy, ALRai told us in the first couple of minutes to expect the unexpected. And as someone else suggested, when even a space scientist sees his shooting stars, you know this isn’t realism. I have to agree with you though, that “NRSA” was a little too gleaming and sterile and empty. IRL most NASA facilities look stuck in the Mad Men era of midcentury modern. If AL Rai can give us realistic (though slightly carnival like) small town northern India backdrops for the first half, he could have ended it with the slightly grittier, dated, and busy place that NASA really is. Overall, not something I’ll watch again except maybe while doing chores, but good for 1-3 watches, to appreciate the imagination and the ambition. Maybe AL Rai has to make a few more movies like this to really get the rhythm and timing and edit right.

    And Thugs… What’s exactly the problem with thugs? I enjoyed it as a one time watch popcorn entertainer. Maybe it’s not as good as Depps Pirates (because it’s not as balanced as a movie), maybe we expect exceptional from anything by Aamir now. Maybe the white brits were laughably maudlin. But in no universe should this movie have been such a flop that it was pulled from theaters in a week. I think I agree with the twitterati here, that critics ratings, along with the audiences blindly following critics ratings as though they were grades on an exam, is what killed this film. Otherwise this was meant to be a trilogy, and I think it could have still worked as a popcorn entertainer action adventure trilogy, maybe with the 2nd better than the first, as is often the case with trilogies. unfortunately now the project is dead.

    Btw when Aamir’s Firengi first appears on-screen, the first thing I thought of was Slash from GnR (Guns and Roses, American post-grunge Rock band from the 90s). Same top hat, same overflowing fro, same circular specs, same jacket with tails. It’s a popular Halloween costume for men, you can usually get the top hat and fro as one headpiece.

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    • I haven’t rewatched either. Thugs I think was just over-stuffed and draggy, but your point that it was intended as the first film in a trilogy really really helps me understand what was happeing! What was draggy to me was all the exposition, and all the sort of treading water and marking time parts of the plot (Aamir’s many humor scenes, various fight scenes that end up resolving nothing, and so on). But that is all trilogy issues, they were trying to establish the setting and the characters, and kept the actual plot movement light in order to make space for things to happen in the sequels. It still could/should have been better, with a tighter script and direction even exposition and time filler action scenes can be fun (for instance, the first hour of Sholay, super entertaining and yet none of it actually matters). But I can forgive them not just getting on with the story already if they thought they would have two more films to give the story and didn’t want to waste it. Oh, and I suppose the action scenes could have been kind of weak because they thought they would have two more movies to improve on them. Or else because they just didn’t care that much and didn’t think the audience would notice.

      I haven’t rewatched Zero and I probably wouldn’t have the same experience as you if I did, because I hate Wes Anderson. Form over function, appearance over depth, whimsy over wisdom, BLECH! Cauron (sp?) gives me a different feeling, his magical realism is rich and deep and more emotional than if it was played “straight” (same reason I love Jaan-E-Mann), but Anderson always feels to me like he is running from emotion and the messy parts of the human experience instead of finding a different way to run towards it. If I think of Zero in a magical-real kind of way, playing it over again in my head, it mostly feels more Anderson than Cauron. Or in Indian terms, more Shandaar than Jaan-E-Mann.

      I think you are right about the Thugs reception, especially because it was 3D. So already looking for that wealthier elite audience, who would be the exact same audience to pay attention to reviews. And, come to think of it, an audience with higher standards for these kinds of films since they would have seen the English versions with slightly better special effects and more confident fight scenes and so on.

      On Mon, Feb 25, 2019 at 2:56 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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      • I understand your form over function argument, especially for Anderson’s more recent film Budapest Hotel. It felt like I was watching a film for an art film class and an exam afterwards, instead of actually getting emotionally involved with the film. His earlier films had more emotional resonance. P.S. I’m a Jaan-e-maan fan too, told everyone about it when it first came out. Never saw Shandaar.

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        • Shandaar has a lot of cute surreal elements, but the whole thing ends up feeling empty to me. On the other hand, there are some people here who loved it. So you could always watch it and be the tie breaker!

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