Wednesday Watching Post: What Are You Reading and Watching and Thinking and Listening To This Week?

Happy Wednesday! Last full day of work this week, WOO-HOO! And then I have a day and a half off to….hang out with my parents and play board games? That actually sounds really nice.

I’ll start!

Reading: I’m gonna steal a little from “watching” for this. I finally watched all the West Memphis Three documentaries, that case is MESSED UP. And now I am reading about what the Three are doing now. They’ve come out of the experience cleaner and wholer and more together than I feel sometimes. Really impressive.

Watching: My parents and I watched Soul last night! Good movie, very confusing philosophy and OPEN ENDING!!!! Like, a pointedly open ending. Like, the point is to just accept the experiences and not ask questions kind of ending. But I don’t want “experiences”. I want a wedding and a baby and happily ever after. BOOOOO!!!!

Thinking: I have a new theory of dog walking. The key, I think, is to explain to the dog what is going to happen in advance. Like, “Albie, tonight it is very cold and I am sleepy. So we are just going to walk to the corner and back, and if you don’t poop by then, you will have to wait until morning”. That way if he is unhappy at the end of the walk, at least I know it is his own fault, because I TOLD him what was going to happen.

Listening: Listening to my heart go pit-a-pat as I look at these photos of Rachel’s human and canine puppy!!! One is 9 months, one is 9 years, and they love each other, and the last photo is my EVERYTHING.

Now, question for you!!!! It’s Rudyard Kipling’s birthday! Who here has read Kim?

I love Kim, myself. And I find it generally un-offensive, especially for Kipling. I think Kipling had a problem, because in his heart of hearts he was Indian and he loved India and felt at home there. But in his mind, he thought he should be British and look down on the “Natives”. So his work has this strange push pull where sometimes he is totally British and sometimes he is totally Indian. Kim feels like the closest he comes to being totally Indian. Also, it’s just a really lovely story.

TALES OF INDIA | Rudyard KIPLING | Reprint

57 thoughts on “Wednesday Watching Post: What Are You Reading and Watching and Thinking and Listening To This Week?

  1. This year I wanted to watch at least 80 indian movies, and few days I ago I finally reached my target. But to do so, I had to watch 3 movies last week. On Christmas day I saw an absolutely not Christmas’y film: Hit- The First Case (telugu) . The idea wasn’t bad and the twist was good, but it was lacking fluidity (+it was too violent for Christmas watch). I read there will be a hindi version with Rajkummar Rao. I hope the director will do a better job this time.

    Then I decided to finish Maniyarayile Ashokan (malayalam), and OMG people don’t make the same mistake. What an uneven movie! It’s about a past “the marital age” guy who dreams about having a wife. Unfortunately his horoscope is bad (it says his first wife will die). The priest suggests he should marry a tree ( a plantain exactly), and he does it. Only that he really falls in love with this tree (!). His mother ties the tree, not knowing it’s her daughter-in-law, and the guy is heartbroken and depressed. Then he discovers the plantain made two little plaintains (his kids) and becomes obsessed with them. Now his horoscope is good, and the family finds a nice girl, only that he is still mourning after the death of his plaintain and doesn’t want to hear about a new marriage. A friend puts him in some kind of institute, Dulquer makes a cameo as the guy’s cousin and voilà! the guy is ready for the wedding. Man, I really watch the oddests movies. But who decided to make this stupid film? And why Dulquer co-produced it?

    After those 2 films I was depressed but had to watch another one to reach 80, and so half-heartedly I started Guvva Gorinka (telugu). I loved it! The reviews are bad, but it was such a Angie movie : An intelligent, tall, shaggy haired, nice guy and a shy girl slowly falls in love without seeing each other. I haven’t seen such a cute movie for months.
    Why isn’t Satyadev Kancharana a bigger star? He is so handsome, and OMG his voice. I think I’ve found a new crush 🙂

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      • If you like slow romances you will like Guvva Gorinka (or at least I hope). There isn’t much plot in this movie – just two people falling in love and few of their friends having minor problems, so I can understand why the reviews aren’t good, but how I needed a movie like that after the strange films about knitting,about policemen with PTDS or about guys almost having sex with the trees 😉

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    • I am SO IMPRESSED!!!! 80 movies is more than even I manage in a normal year, I think (figuring about 50 new movies in theaters, and not nearly as many new movies out of theaters). And thank you for taking the bullet for us and watching ridiculous movies. That plantain plant movie is just NO. It almost sounds so bad as to be good, but you are saying it is just boring dumb bad?

      On Wed, Dec 30, 2020 at 8:48 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  2. I can’t remember if I read Kim. I think I might have? I don’t know. I love Kipling’s ghost stories. I read that other one that’s similar to Kim by M.M. Kaye, made it almost to the end, then it became about battles and I promptly dropped it and never finished.

    I did my best/worst post for the year: https://thickthighsandbadguys.wordpress.com/2020/12/28/best-and-worst-of-2020/

    Since there’s nothing to do the next few days I think I will rewatch all the best ones.

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  3. I’ve been taking advantage of this holiday week to read (Paul Theroux at his curmudgeony-est) watch (Pankaj in Criminal Justice), think (What shall I eat next?) but not WORK. I’m giving myself one more day of leisure then it’s back to my novel-in-progress on Jan first, come hell or high water.

    Tomorrow, Sukumar, who moved in to help care for my husband when he was ill, is making mutton biryani and tamarind rice for our dinner. He doesn’t drink so we’ll toast Gil in heaven with virgin margaritas and pray for a better 2021.

    And a tip about dog walking. Teddi is a weather primadonna. She won’t use the pet-thru to my fenced yard when it’s bad outside. I keep puppy papers down for her and she’s quite happy to use them when she has to. You might be able to train Albie to use them in an emergency. Worth a try.

    And Cosmo! What a dear, trusting face.

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    • That’s where I am thinking maybe I should schedule days off for February. I can’t travel or do anything special, but I can officially say “I am on vacation now, I don’t have to be productive”. Which I didn’t really get with Christmas, because I was doing work-work, then went straight into Christmas work, then back to work-work. I am looking forward to Jan 1 which is such a strange non-holiday holiday. I don’t have to work, but there are also no particular festive responsibilities, so I can just read comic books and watch the snow fall.

      I am resisting giving in to the pet-papers. i was going to have to this year just because of my back steps. The building never shovels them (grrr!) so it is really really hard to get up and down in the snow. But now I am staying at my parents have the time and they have covered steps, so problem solved!

      Cosmo is amazing! And did you flip through to the last photo with Cosmo on his owner’s lap?

      On Wed, Dec 30, 2020 at 9:15 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  4. I have read Kim,and while I don’t find it offensive it is painfully obvious that it was not written by an “Indian” guy.There is some English sensibility in the treatment of monks which reads very Western.I still think that ‘The Jungle Book’ despite the problematic elements feels the most Indian due to the brilliant descriptive skills of the author while the predominantly character driven approach of Kim gives way to his English aspirations for the protagonist.

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    • That makes sense. It’s a bildungsroman, but he never quite settles on the future of his protagonist. Will he be an English officer and spy? Or a Priest? Or a horse trader? Kipling wants to make him part of the colonial authorities, but the character as decribed sounds far more like a future radical.

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  5. The heavy make up and fake eye lashes on actresses in early Indian flicks bothers me, especially when she’s supposed to be a village girl. Today’s heroines are more realistic but we still see them go to bed in sarees, bangles up to the elbows and even nose rings. How can they sleep?

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    • And of course they always sleep beautifully, laying on their back or side, legs together, delicately breathing.

      On Wed, Dec 30, 2020 at 10:53 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  6. I think I read Kim at some point, but if I did it was before getting into Indian stuff, and it did really stick.

    Just to pass the time, I got a Christmas-sy Agatha Christie collection this week, and now I have to catch up on Tommy and Tuppence. Those two are a blast.

    Which leads me to thinking: Somehow I tend to end up liking the lesser known works of well-known authors. My favorite Austen is Northanger Abbey.

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    • I love Tommy and Tuppence!!! Are you reading them in order? If not, stop everything and do that! One of the best/most interesting things about the series is that they age in real time. So you get to see them as a young dating couple, then a young married couple, then middle-aged empty nesters, and slowly moving into their elderly years. Which means they also go from being young enthusiastic people discounting the boring old folks, to being those boring old folks who are discounted. It’s just fascinating.

      On Wed, Dec 30, 2020 at 2:45 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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        • Yaaaaaay! I love The Secret Adversary!!! They are so cute together, not officially being in love but actually being in love.

          On Fri, Jan 1, 2021 at 4:38 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  7. My family and I have seen some Christmas movies last week.
    First we rewatched Christmas Inheritance and it was still good. Then A California Christmas, I didn’t like it much. And later we saw all 3 “Christmas in Evergreen” films and it was too much. The first and the second was ok, the third was the weakest, but we have the best time while watching it because we noticed none of the men from previous films was present and we started imagining the craziest reasons.
    Oh and we also saw, for the first time ever It’s a Wonderful Life. We loved it.

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    • YES! It’s a Wonderful Life! You should make that your Christmas tradition and dump either Home Alone or Trading Places. Or both!

      Also, isn’t Jimmy Stewart surprisingly angry and also sexy? Or maybe it’s not surprising to you, if you don’t have “dopey dull Jimmy Stewart” in your head like Americans do.

      On Wed, Dec 30, 2020 at 3:35 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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      • I watched Home Alone last year after so many years. so it’s definitely not a tradition in my house, but maybe it will be because my son likes it a lot. Yesterday my sister gave me her Disney+ password and guess what my son chose among all the movies – Home alone 2 ! And today he said we should also watch Home Alone 3! (Btw the Italians choose the worst titles for movies. Home Alone in Poland is called Kevin is home alone, the second movie is called Kevin is alone in New York and third Alex – home alone. But in Italy the first is: Mom, I miss my plane; the second Mom, I miss my plane again, and third Mom, I have measles. I was like WTF when I saw this last title today)

        For Jimmy Stuart I can only say that once he started playing his age in the movie, and being tormented he was like different person, much sexier and interesting.

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        • Oh dear, I did not like it and I am sorry your son did. On Disney+, my biggest recommendation is Pick of the Litter! Puppies! Dogs! It will help your son not be afraid!!! Or, Tangled. I just really like Tangled.

          Oh yeah Jimmy Stewart. Angry unshaven conflicted mature, very cool.

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  8. That giant dog puppy on the little boy’s lap was just about as cute as can be, and I’m not even a dog person. I’ve been reading about desert pupfish. And I’ve been getting really frustrated because when we happen upon fish I’ll think they are pupfish but then later my spouse will say they weren’t, but he might be wrong because we are NOT biologists at all. But learning more about the pupfish does bring up a whole slew of questions without easy answers, how far do you go preserve a diminishing species?

    I’ve been watching American musicals on DVD because we rearranged our house and now you can sit on a couch and watch DVDs, while knitting. But I have now knit myself my limit of two scarves (my spouse decided it was easier for me to make more rather than unpack the garage to find the hidden bag of 15 scarves from last winter), and I have nothing more to knit. 😦

    Oh but last night the spouse and I were watching a DVD of PBS’s The Story of India and he was like “You might know more about this than me”, and the only thing I DID know more about than him was when they talked about Asoka, because, well, thank you SRK. But we haven’t finished it yet, so who knows, maybe my movie based knowledge will turn up something more.

    Thinking – we’ve had a lovely holidays, but COVID still sucks. Also, I should read Kim.

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    • Oh ooh! What American Musicals??? I have seen them ALL!!!!

      I had a friend whose college Indian history teacher showed Asoka in class over the course of two weeks and called it a day for ancient India. We should all have college teachers with that work ethic.

      On Wed, Dec 30, 2020 at 3:56 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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      • I was only in college for four years, but in that time I never watched a movie in class. I saw Oklahoma, Seven Brides for Seven Brothers (BESTdancing EVER!), La La Land, and The Sound of Music.

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        • Did you see Oklahoma and Seven Brides wide screen? With the letterbox along the top and bottom? Beccause that is key. I saw songs from both of them for years and was pretty ho-hum, and then I finally saw them on DVD with the letterbox and was able to understand the vision of the choreography and it is AMAZING. Also, now that you have seen Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, you can watch Satte Pe Satte and appreciate both how perfect the casting of Hema Malini is, and how the second half just goes completely off the rails and becomes it’s own weird thing.

          I was going to say “that’s weird, I saw a ton of movies in class” and then I remembered that I took a ton of film classes in college, so not quite the same thing. Although we also watched movies in my German language classes.

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          • Yes I saw it wide screen. Though I fell in love with 7 for 7 as a kid when I only saw it adjusted for T.V. Men dancing with axes in the snow, how can anyone NOT love that?! I love the songs in Oklahoma, the plot line, the chemistry of the leads, but as a whole the movie is a bit dull. Odd how I can love so many pieces without liking the entirety.

            I majored in psychology, minored in human development and comparative literature – no movies.

            I’m searching for Satte Pe Satte now!

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          • I majored in history, minored in German and film and English. So many movies! Even in history class, we got to see a bit of Triumph of the Will. And German was all about watching movies, and so was film, and then my Shakespeare class for English, more movies. College was heaven.

            On Wed, Dec 30, 2020 at 10:57 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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          • Also, your college degrees are PERFECT to prepare you to be the mother of three very different little boys. Have you already realized this? You can understand their brains, their development, and know lots of books to read to them.

            On Wed, Dec 30, 2020 at 10:57 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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          • According to my Dante teacher in college, children in Italy start learning Dante in elementary school. We will have to ask Angie if that is true.

            On Thu, Dec 31, 2020 at 11:13 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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          • Been watching Satte Pe Satta – Hema is FANTASTIC. Much better than the U.S. version, and that is about the only thing better. I stopped watching when the double role popped up. Let’s just say Satte Pe Satte did not pull actors from the Bombay Ballet Company. Also, one of the brothers looks 50. It’s just weird. It would be different if I didn’t love Seven Brides so much, but I do, and I love it for the dancing, so I’m not able to simply watch Satte pe Satte for it’s own merits.

            Bummer that the remake by Farrah got shelved. Anushka would be great – she’s a comedian, like Hema. I read that SRK was approached for the role after Hrithik backed out. And IF SRK can play the oldest brother, then I think they should have Juhi play the wife. She would be great, and it would be fun to see them together again. Of course Kajol would also be great. Well I guess that is my dream fantasy of an older romance, SRK with an age appropriate herroine in Seven Brides for Seven Brothers. I’ll have to close my eyes when it comes to the dancing.

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          • Oh, lets keep this going! Howard Keel and Jane Powell weren’t great dancers, so we can leave them as Shahrukh and Juhi. But then we just need to stack the cast with 6 dancers for the other brothers. Shahid for sure, Varun, maybe Allu Arjun up from the south? Rajkummar? He’s not trained, but he’s fun to watch. We’ve got to be able to cast 6 great dancer-actors, it can’t be impossible. And then for the women, Kriti, Sai Pallavi, Shraddha, Sonya, and two others.

            Also, since you stopped watching, I will tell you that Evil Double Role Amitabh falls in love with the saintly crippled heiress he was sent to kill and ends up working with all the good guys.

            On Sat, Jan 2, 2021 at 9:42 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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          • I haven’t finished so I have no right to comment, but still, it doesn’t seem like a good deal for the rich disabled girl to end up with a criminal just out of jail, even if he does love her.

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          • But he’s AMITABH!!!! I am sure she is happy.

            On Sun, Jan 3, 2021 at 12:29 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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          • I just have to gush about the genius of this song. The practice it must have taken! I didn’t see any cuts. And the beauty combined with the hilarity. “Can’t make no vows, to a bunch of cows… Can’t shoot the breeze with a bunch of trees.” It is visually stunning, and $#$%! hysterical. https://youtu.be/4ChstJwEjIA

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          • Yes!!!!! That was the first dance I thought of when you mentioned this movie. The barn raising gets a lot more talk, but this is the one that must have taken way more work.

            On Sun, Jan 3, 2021 at 12:38 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  9. I feel like this week, I’ve watched more movies than I ever have in a single week.

    First up was WW84 on Christmas Day. Very good, very solid superhero movie with action and romance and important messages. The first one was better, but this one was still very good. The one of all the movies I watched this week that made me miss movie theaters the most. And I hate people on the internet and their reactions to this movie. 1) It’s a superhero movie. If you can’t suspend your disbelief for a superhero movie, you shouldn’t be watching superhero movies. 2) I can’t stand people who refuse to watch this movie because of Gal Gadot’s Israeli politics. And that’s all I’m going to say about that.

    Then, on Sunday, I showed my roommate DDLJ. And I am so pleased to report that she liked it! Her main complaint was that it was long. She thought Shah Rukh was a major jerk for the first half (which I did too) but he redeemed himself in the second half. She also didn’t like how he kept repeating himself, how he was only going to marry Kajol when her father agreed and he said that 349 times. She thought the last half hour was boring, but the very ending train scene made up for it. She thought Kajol was very pretty, and Shah Rukh wasn’t but could see why people like him. I think her favorite song was Zara Sa Jhoom. She felt very cultured afterwards and thanked me for making her watch it, and liked it enough to watch Humpty. That’s hopefully going to be tonight, so I might come back to this post tomorrow with an update on her thoughts.

    And then Monday was the new Coolie. I thought this movie was bad! I did not like this movie! But that’s exactly what I expected to happen. I sort of stopped asking questions after a while, and also stopped paying complete attention. Varun in the nurse’s outfit lasted way too long. The only time I laughed was when I imitated Varun’s “twin Raju” accent and made myself laugh. Really, the only thing that kept me going was the music and Varun & Sara’s chemistry. And alcohol. But I think I drank too much and it messed up my sleep schedule.

    So I have definitely not been reading or listening to anything new. I’ve mostly been thinking about how I need to do lesson plans for after winter break and I keep avoiding it.

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    • I am so glad your roommate liked DDLJ!!!! And now you can show her Humpty, and she will love it, and then you can swing back and do some fun later SRK and she can learn to love him, and it will all be WONDERFUL. And someday, if you build to it, SOTY!!!

      I am sad you didn’t like the Coolie movie, but glad you still had fun watching it!!! And I think not asking questions is key.

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      • I tried to show her the SOTY trailer initially and stupid YouTube didn’t have any trailers with subtitles. But that would be the one that would break my heart if she didn’t like it.

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      • An update: We watched Humpty last night. And she liked it! Better than DDLJ! Which honestly is how I feel too. Here were some points that were made in our conversation:

        – Showing her DDLJ first was the smart move. She didn’t pick up on all the references, but definitely some. Particularly the “sex prank”, she almost immediately recognized. Some of the other things went over her head, and some I had to explain. Specifically the ending when Alia’s dad said “go, live your life” and that was how the viewer understood he was letting her marry Varun since it’s a direct DDLJ reference.
        – I feel like there’s a chance Humpty was harder for her to get into than DDLJ. There’s a lot of secondary characters that are introduced early on that I think are somewhat inconsequential to the plot, or only to come back later for one scene (i.e. Alia’s uncle), and she was asking a lot of questions in the first 20 minutes about what’s happening and why. This is probably just me reading into it.
        – We both agree that Varun and Alia are both gorgeous people, thank god.
        – Her main complaint about DDLJ was that it was too long, and most of the last half hour was unnecessary. So it seems like she felt every scene in Humpty was relevant and important, at least in the second half. She thought both were over the top and dramatic, but not in a bad way. Humpty was more so. But she thought the “proving the fiance gay” bit was hilarious, which just makes me uncomfortable.
        – One of the main reasons I like Humpty better than DDLJ is because I like Alia better as a female protagonist than Kajol. She agreed, saying that she was a bit more daring, even though both were outwardly rebellious.
        – Varun is also better to both of us. She said he was more likeable throughout the film, whereas Shah Rukh was only a quote-unquote “good person” after he fell in love with Kajol.
        – Similarly, she said that she liked Varun and Alia’s chemistry better than Shah Rukh and Kajol. Varun and Alia were flirty the entire first half of the movie, whereas Shah Rukh and Kajol hated each other. Then got along, then fell in love, but she really only saw the chemistry after they were in love. She thought Varun and Alia has chemistry the entire movie, even before they were in love, and therefore they had more of it.

        Overall, I think she liked it better because it was more modern, which is why I like it better too. It probably also helps that we’d be around the same age as Varun and Alia in 2014 when the movie was released. But one of the main points I came back to was that the bar fight in Humpty is so so good because it shows why Varun is better for Alia than her fiance. DDLJ, the viewer automatically likes Shah Rukh better for Kajol because he’s the lead and because her fiance is a bad person. In Humpty, both Varun and Alia’s fiance are good people, but in the bar fight scene, the fiance is doing what’s objectively right whereas Varun is doing what Alia wants and what’s best for her in the moment. So that sells why Varun is better for Alia, why they’re a better match, and showing that angle, that both people would make good partners but there’s a better choice that’s not completely obvious to the naked eye, makes Humpty a more interesting movie. And I think it was when I brought that up that’s when she said “Yeah, I liked Humpty better.”

        But the extra good news is she’s already talking about watching more movies. No ideas as to when, but of all the trailers I showed her, she specifically mentioned watching Band Baaja Baaraat. So I might be converting her. Woohoo!!

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        • Yaaaaaaaaaaay! I am so glad!!!! And then you can show her Daawat E Ishw and Hasee To Phasee and I Hate Luv Storys and Jaane Tu…Ya Jaane Na. All the happy 2000s rom-coms!

          On Thu, Dec 31, 2020 at 2:24 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  10. That last kid + dog photo is just the best :).

    I loved the ending of Soul! And the whole movie, it was so real NYC, and the characters and music were fantastic, and it totally worked philosophically on both a kid and adult level. SPOILERS I saw the ending as being about how the whole idea of finding your purpose in life is the wrong way to understand why you’re here on earth, that it’s about appreciating the experience of living, the small moments of beauty and the people who love us. Joe gets his perfect night as a musician and it turns out that’s a beginning, not the happy ending he’d always imagined. When he gets his second chance at life, that’s the happy ending, and whether he uses it to be a teacher or a musician or something else is less important because any of those choices will have good and bad things about them but the important thing is that he’s learned to appreciate life for what it is. END SPOILERS

    We started watching Halt and Catch Fire, a show that’s a fictionalized version of the very early days of developing PCs in the early 80s computer industry in Texas. It’s good, there’s a strong husband/wife relationship at the center (he’s the hardware genius in the story, she’s also a computer scientist but working in a more cookie cutter job at another company, underappreciated professionally and carrying most of the home and kids work), plus two more troubled and eccentric characters as the girl coder prodigy and the visionary sales guy. Full of 80s wardrobe and cars and music. I realized when I looked it up that it’s a few years old now but I’d never heard about it and now it’s on Netflix, so one of those. Also started watching another Turkish rom com, One Way to Tomorrow, a meet cute on a train story. Liking the characters and writing so far, but my husband has been staying up later and I can only stay awake to watch a bit at a time every night so I’m not even halfway through yet.

    Reading: trying to finish Winter’s Tale after putting it down a year ago. It’s very long. I have other books I want to read but I need to believe I can finish something I started at this point. It’s been a few years of severely shortened attention span, trying to get back into the habit of finding stretches of time for reading.

    I haven’t read Kim but I’ve been thinking similar thoughts reading The Secret Garden with my son. I loved this book as a kid. It holds up better than I expected, the way she lays out the story and characters has great pacing and construction and the story is engaging. But! I’ve also had to add framing for him about British colonialism because the way she talks about the “natives” is mostly awful, and generally the Yorkshire moors are presented as fresh and bracing and a corrective to her character after years in hot and languid India. I’m glad we didn’t read it when he was younger, he’s old enough now to understand and react to those references instead of just absorbing them.

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    • Soul SPOILERS: I just don’t like that point! I wanted to see him decide to be a teacher for the rest of his life, and then fastforward 6 years, and have 22 show up in his classroom as a little 5 year old, and him recognize her, and all my questions be answered and everything be final and DONE. I hate open endings. Which is probably why I am exactly the person who should watch Soul and learn to appreciate life and blah blah and not always look for the perfect answer. END SPOILERS

      I loved The Secret Garden. I read it to myself for the first time probably when I was about the same age as your older son. And yeah, it probably did give me a wrong impression of India. On re-readings, I skipped that whole intro section and stuck with just the British bits. For more weirdness, you know the author was a dedicated Christian Scientist and Theosophist? So the whole ending with “the power of the earth heals my body” has this background of faith healings and stuff. I still love the book, and I think the way it is presented in the book is a far more universal idea of just getting out and living life and trying, but having that background kind of blew my mind when I learned it.

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      • I think if I were reading Secret Garden myself I wouldn’t notice at much, but reading it with my son there are just a lot of little references scattered throughout – the British servants are more independent and force Mary to learn how to do for herself, where her Ayah and the servants in India never contradicted her and always did as they were told. The British air stirs her blood and puts color in her cheeks and a spark in her eyes, where the air in India made her languid and cross. Somehow even the British plants and food are made out to be superior, and the book finds virtue in the windy, rainy weather. I didn’t know about Hodgson Burnett’s philosophical leanings, that’s an interesting twist. Like I said, I still like the story, and I’m impressed at how it’s holding the attention of my 21st century kid. Just…too bad about all the colonialism.

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    • Oh, that looks surprisingly good!

      Did you notice they added on a more family stuff than in the original? I guess the Tamil film audience is less likely to accept a young woman all on her own doing this quest. Or they just had more of a budget for family actors.

      Also, Maddy is distinctly old. Which isn’t a bad thing, but it changes the story slightly into more of an “old wise man who has lived life but never found love” instead of “young man finding his way and unsure about love” thing.

      On Thu, Dec 31, 2020 at 8:37 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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      • Yes, I was thinking the same about Maddy being older. It changes the way I look at the story. And I think I prefer the older protagonist. The only thing that disturb me is that I can’t forget Sai Pallavi was supposed to play Parvathy role. Shraddha Srinath is a good actress but she is not Sai Pallavi.

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