Monday Morning Questions: What Do You Want to Ask Me the Day After Easter?

Happy Monday! I had a very productive and tiring weekend and I’m kind of looking forward to work as a nice break. And then tonight the break is over and I have to go to quilting. We’re making sheep with numbers (like “counting sheep”) for an accountant’s baby.

This is the open space where you can bring up any topic and ask me anything. Want to know what I think of Shahrukh’s latest interview? Bring it up here! Wondering why brides wear red? As here!

And I have a question for you! Just to get the conversation started. I’m on this kick of rewriting classic Hollywood films from the 1950s and earlier, what are your favorite movies from that era?

One big result of watching all this black and white is making me appreciate Guru Dutt even more. He really did stuff that was completely different from anyone else.

21 thoughts on “Monday Morning Questions: What Do You Want to Ask Me the Day After Easter?

  1. I’d love to hear your take on Shah Rukh’s speech to the Critics Awards. I think there was a lot of interesting stuff there sugar coated with the characteristic humor.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Happy Easter Monday! I really wish we had more optional religious holidays in the US. Other countries with pluralistic populations manage to give scope for religious holidays without privileging one religion over another. However, I’m at work, having celebrated Easter in Ohio then driving many hours to arrive back home last night. Grateful to have family to celebrate with, though.

    My favorite movies from that era (some may be 60’s) are All About Eve (which we’ve already re-cast and adapted!), Bringing Up Baby, The African Queen, Philadelphia Story, The Big Sleep, Dark Passage, It Happened One Night, all the Hitchcock movies with Cary Grant, Rear Window but NOT Vertigo (ugh), the Americanization of Emily, Music Man, Guys and Dolls, West Side Story, White Christmas.

    Do you think Albie Dog will get any bigger, or is he done growing? I’m so glad he has good puppy manners! People manners will come!


    • I’d like the system that is common in India where all the holidays can lead to a day off. Easter Friday and Monday would be nice in America, also Ash Wednesday, Eid, Yom Kippur, all the major religious holidays. It would make life easier, and it would also mean I could invite my Jewish friends to an egg hunt and they could invite me to Yom Kippur, with an easy assumption that everyone has the day off anyway.

      Let’s see, from your list I’ve already done All About Eve, Bringing Up Baby, and The Philadelphia Story. Indian film for reals has already done It Happened One Night and West Side Story. But that still leaves me a good long list! I love The Big Sleep too and was just thinking about remaking it, but it’s so atmospheric. Nothing really “happens”, it’s all kind of a dream state of sex and violence and sex and love.

      Albie Dog is definitely done growing, he’s gonna stay a tiny tiny funny looking dog the rest of his life. Poor thing.

      On Mon, Apr 22, 2019 at 10:07 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:



    • Didn’t see it myself. Let’s crowdsource the answer: My Tamilians! Petta! Worth watching or not?

      On Mon, Apr 22, 2019 at 11:59 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:



  3. Two great noirs to re-do a la DCIB: Angel Face with Robert Mitchum and Jean Simmons, and Macao, with Mitchum again, and Jane Russell. Simmons plays a sugar-mouthed devil, and Jane Russell a hard-jawed but soft-hearted vamp. Don’t ask me why, but I like Prithviraj for the tough-as- nails guy who melts when he falls in love. (Remember how seemingly above-it-all he was when Rani pursued him in Aiyya, and how he about-faced so sweetly in the end and told her he knew it all along?) I pick Alia Bhatt for the Jean Simmons saintly bitch role, and Kareena KK for sexy Jane Russel. Kareena can expertly portray a don’t-mess-with-me (but if you do I’m a great gal) vibe.
    I saw Gully Boy Sunday. Everybody had gone home, the dishwasher was running and the big table accordioned back into a small one. I had cooked and cleaned and played Amazing Nonna to my 5 grands all day, but Gully was so good, I eagerly watched it all the way thru and even replayed certain sections. I’m a Ranveer the Actor fan. (Ranveer the Celebrity keeps me guessing.) And I gotta say, he sewed up this film. Perfect portrayal of a nice guy with a seething core. I loved him, rooted for him, and he never once took off his shirt. Alia was, as always, attuned to her character with no missteps. I think she is turning out to be the Meryl Streep of Indian film: you expect a good performance; you get it. Ho-hum. Siddhant was a pleasant surprise and Kalki too old to play that young. I believed Ranveer’s lust for her but not the other way round. My only beef, and it’s tiny, was the dad’s change of heart at the end. There he is, after calling his son all sorts of a loser and beating his wife half to death, sitting proudly beside her at the performance. At least Ranveer didn’t thank him for coming.
    I had a very different take on Fanney Khan with Anil, Aish and Rajkumar. It was so bad, it belongs in the Thugs of Hindistan “WTF?” trash heap. The overweight daughter, who could have been an appealing focus, struck a wrong note, and the BIG SONG grated on my ears. And that coda with the little girl singing it AGAIN, verse after verse! What were they thinking?


    • Prithviraj is so good in noirs! I don’t know why he keeps making horror films, noirs are where he belongs. City of God is my favorite movie of his, and maybe my favorite Malayalam film period, and he is so noiry in the classic “modern day knight in a trenchcoat” sort of vibe.

      So glad you saw and liked Gully Boy. It’s really such a good movie. I agree with you about Alia, we don’t even think about it any more, we just expect excellence. She has to be actually bad (like in Kalank where her performance was just average) before anyone notices.

      Fanney Khan is so bad! Watch Ek Ladki Ko Dekha if you haven’t yet to get the “bad” Anil-Rajkummar taste out of your mouth and replace it with a good one.

      On Mon, Apr 22, 2019 at 2:15 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:



  4. Oh dear, I watched Gully Boy and unlike mariapaolettagil and a lot of other people I thought it was terribly overrated. It’s not bad, just cliched and predictable. I had misgivings about Ranveer as a slum dweller based on the trailer and despite being shouted at thoroughly on Twitter for this opinion, I still think he was miscast. There was an opening shot of him in bed with a slow pan on his muscular, waxed chest and he looks incredibly hot–which isn’t correct for the character. His performance wasn’t terrible but it felt very shallow to me. Alia was fine, didn’t blow me away but she was more convincing in her role than Ranveer was in his. Overall, meh.


    • BLASPHEMER!!!!! That’s it, you have a different opinion on art than the majority here, I will have to shame you and drive you out.

      I can’t really disagree with anything you say, and yet for me the film just worked. I guess the overall message and the music carried me along so that I didn’t care about Ranveer being miscast or any of the other flaws.

      On Mon, Apr 22, 2019 at 2:35 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:



  5. I am woefully ignorant of classic movies in the West, so my favorite movie is Tokyo Story, which might work in Bengali but never in Hindi (NOTHING happens. Nothing at all). My other one is the one referenced above, Mr and Mrs 55. Of course, it’s already Indian, but it totally needs re-doing because of its sexist plot! I love Madhubala’s wonderful character and her performance, and it doesn’t have the pervasive world-weariness of every other Guru Dutt movie–it even has a synchronized swimming scene. But I feel so conflicted liking it because of it’s explicitly anti-feminist stance. Anyway, if you run out of Hollywood movies this one is begging to be redone.


    • Yes Mr. and Mrs. 55!!!! Although I feel like it isn’t super anti-feminist, because the bottom line is, our heroine gets everything she wants and the film doesn’t judge her for what she wants. But yes, it does need to be adjusted a bit. I will have to think on this.

      Have you seen the Telugu film Happy? That’s kind of a twist on Mr. and Mrs. 55. There’s a lot more to it, but the basic idea is our heroine is super ambitious and wants to be a doctor, her father wants to marry her off, she asks a boy to pretend to be her boyfriend to get out of the engagement, there’s a series of misunderstandings, and they end up married. And they make a deal, they live together and are “married” while she finished med school. Shockingly, they end up falling in love for real without admitting it.

      On Mon, Apr 22, 2019 at 10:18 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:



      • I think it’s anti-feminist in text but not subtext if you know what I mean. Madhubala’s feminist aunt is the bad guy (and there is a brief scene in which a rural woman tells Madhubala that she doesn’t mind being beaten by her husband because it means he loves her–that’s got to go). But, Madhubala is a great character who does what she wants and the movie takes her seriously.

        I haven’t seen Happy. I’ll have to give it a look.


  6. So I watched City of God last night because you said it was good and showcased Prithviraj’s noir talents. And it does. He’s stellar. Plus, no matter what angle his mobile face is photographed from, it’s gorgeous. But the movie! Maybe because I found it on YouTube, it was dubbed in Hindi with truly cheesy English subtitles, but duh…I had no idea what was going on. I even consulted a bunch of Inet sites, Wikipedia et al, for the plot. And STILL didn’t understand what was going on. Most reviews were excellent, praised the “innovative linear”, or maybe “boldly non-linear” style; not sure which, or what, or huh? Three sets of people are present at the same automobile accident, an actress whose husband abuses her, another gal who escapes another abusive hubby, Prithviraj who may or may not be a bad guy, gets stabbed but, Hello, comes back in the next scene and bulldozes a bunch of meanies with a whip or hose or whatever. Time has no meaning; present, past, future all blend together. Help! I admire your spare, clear style of writing, Margaret. Maybe you can explain it to me.


  7. The first two favourite Hollywood pre 60s films that pop into my mind are Rebecca and Waterloo Bridge. Both depend so much on atmosphere, not sure how that would translate, though the plots would certainly work.


    • Rebecca already got a SUPER WEIRD remake back in the 60s, Kohraa. I can’t even remember all the insane twists they built on the basic plot.

      Waterloo Bridge would be a lovely heartbreaking story to remake. I could see one of the artier directors now really doing it perfectly, like they guy who made Lootera.

      On Tue, Apr 23, 2019 at 4:17 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:



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