Monday Morning Questions: What Do You Want to Ask Me, the Glorious Morning After the Time Change???

I am so HAPPY! I got to wake up in SUNSHINE!!! And I woke up with enough time to walk the dog and make coffee and get dressed before work! It is the loveliest happiest day EVER!

Here is where you get to ask me anything you want from “explain to me the history of attitudes towards police in India” to “Tell me your personal feelings about Thanksgiving”. I’m feeling alert and clear headed and ready to go DEEP!

Now, question for you!!! I don’t like Kamal Haasan. Do you like Kamal Haasan? Or, if you don’t know who he is, do you understand a particular kind of man who says all the right things about being liberal and is actually intelligent and talented, and yet at the same time doesn’t seem capable of letting anyone else TALK like EVER? (this is based on Kamal’s starring/producing roles in which his character gets all the good stuff and everyone else just stands around and admires him)

I’ll get more specific, is it possible that you have an uncle/in-law/boss in your life who says all the right things and seems to believe all the right things and yet NEVER LETS ANYONE ELSE TALK?

UGH Kamal Haasan! Why do you have to be like this and also be a liberal? Why couldn’t you be a nice easy to hate conservative?

I am a son of Socrates' – Kamal Haasan | Telugu movies, Corporate event  design, Latest movie trailers

33 thoughts on “Monday Morning Questions: What Do You Want to Ask Me, the Glorious Morning After the Time Change???

  1. I don’t like Kamal Hassan as a person as he seems to be a person just obsessed with himself. Yet he’s such a good actor but he can’t seem to understand you can’t be everything.

    Like in Nayakan, I just wanted his character to be more grey and then i remembered this is Kamal Hassan of course he can’t be evil. Yet I couldn’t imagine anyone else playing it.

    Questions for you:

    Are you going to watch Sooryavanshi?

    Who’s your favourite actor/actress from the golden age (late 40’s to 60’s) in Bollywood?

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    • THANK YOU! This is exactly my issue with him. He really is a good actor and a smart person and I agree with him on many things. But you watch his movies and it is just The Kamal Haasan Show, no shades of grey, no questioning of his character.

      I am probably not going to watch Sooryavanshi because FilmiKudhi said it is terrible and life is too short.

      I don’t know if I have a favorite from the Golden Age!!! I enjoy young Dev, but then get tired of him as he ages and challenges himself less. I really like Tanuja even though I know she wasn’t the best actress, I just like her. Ashok Kumar, obviously, is charming as all get out no matter what. Guru Dutt is my favorite director. So yeah, I’m all over the place!

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  2. I am not a huge Kamal Hasan fan either but for slightly different reasons. So, while it is usually the Kamal Hasan show, the first two movies that pop up in my head when I think of Kamal Hasan are Sadma and Saagar. And Sridevi outshines him by a long shot in Sadma and to me, Dimple and Rishi are equally amazing in Saagar. Dimple probably outshines both Rishi and Kamal in Saagar.

    My issue with him has more to do with his personal life. But I guess it comes from the same sentiment you expressed, it is the Kamal Hassan show. Every women who has come out of a relationship with him is traumatized and broken and in serious need of therapy after life with him. And when they have spoken about it, it feels like it is what you said, it is always his way or the highway. But more importantly, he uses liberal philosophy to manipulate/suppress/traumatize women he is in a relationship with.

    I’ll ask the next questions you proposed. I’d love to know your thoughts on the history police attitudes in India – maybe even by tying it to movies. I know we discussed this a while back in relation to my discussion with my husband about Singham.

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    • “You made a choice to be with me, women are powerful and independent which means all your feelings are your own fault, don’t be weak and blame a man, blah blah blah”. That kind of stuff? I hate that kind of stuff!

      I’ve been thinking about the Indian police slightly differently because I’ve been reading/watching a lot of British stuff lately. The British police force is so unique in structure, and my impression is they kind of awkwardly tried to recreate it in India. So maybe the Indian police are doomed to failure because the way they are structured is not viable for a country so large and diverse? Or maybe not! I’m just so aware that in America we have completely localized and individual police structures with national forces above it. While in India, it seems like everything is nationalized or semi-nationalized? We just saw with Aryan the push-pull of national versus local police forces, which was kind of a good checks and balances. But how often does that happen? That is, how often is a national versus local team forced to work together versus a national-who-is-local having absolute total authority?

      And then the other thing which feels totally foreign to me as an American, the firm line between officers and non officers in the police force. Officers are almost Gods, it seems like, while the regular constable types would never dare to interfere with them. Is that possible?

      I’m not being very clear, but I hope you get what I am saying.

      On Mon, Nov 8, 2021 at 9:47 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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      • YES. Exactly what you said. In other words, you knew who I was, you chose to be in a relationship with me, here are my rules, abide by them or get out. Followed by, I am never wrong and I did nothing wrong. I am never going to take responsibility for my actions in hurting the women I have been with.

        I don’t know anything about the British police force and I only have a cursory knowledge of the Indian one. But, it seems like, to me, there is technically a structure similar to the U.S. in that there are local police forces but the national agencies are brought in when the crimes rise to the national interest. But first, in India, it seems like the national interest line is very loosey goosey and heavily influenced by politics and media (but then again, maybe it is the same in the U.S.). Second, it seems like once the national team takes over, the local police don’t have much of a say in anything. So for example, in U.S. there is concurrent jurisdiction if the crime might be a local, state, or federal crime. For example, local police work with DEA on drug trafficking matters often or with the FBI and U.S. Marshall on organized crime. But in those cases, it is generally a taskforce and I guess while in the U.S. the federal agency may take over the case eventually, the local police have a pretty big role? I am adding a question mark because I think there are plenty of times when the national agencies take over and the local police are left out, similar to India.
        Also, while there might not be as much of a difference in officers vs non-officers, friends who work for national agencies have told me that similar hierarchy exists in agencies like the FBI where if you are not an officer, you are essentially a helper and officers have the last say. Maybe the hierarchy isn’t as bad as it is in India due to the differences in culture and laws, but it still exists.

        I guess in writing all this, I am seeing more similarities than differences but just a difference in degrees of power.

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        • UGH! I hate that version of feminism/liberalism. “Nothing is my fault, everything is your fault, because I believe in women’s rights and independence and I gave you choices”. To spin off that for a bit, I also really REALLY hate that fake empowerment take on economic issues. “I couldn’t get my dream job, so I just worked harder and harder and then I got it!” No, sometimes the issue is that the system is set up so that you can’t get your dream job and it’s not “weak” or “being a victim” to complain about that.

          With the Indian police, there’s also the same infrastructure issues as anything else. Cell phones have improved things enormously, but you are still going to have a situation where there is one small police force covering a large area and no way to reach anyone else to request oversight. Right? It’s a situation that invites corruption of all kinds, including police corruption. Oh, and the biggest thing I think of with the police, the way the slowness of the courts gives them outsize powers. We just saw that with Aryan. Even if he is eventually fully cleared by the courts, or the charges are dropped, just by being arrested he was guaranteed weeks of waiting for bail, and now years of being trapped in country on bail, just waiting for his day in court. Does that make sense? In America, if someone was arrested on those kinds of charges, and could afford a lawyer and so on, the whole process from arrest to cleared by the court would be closer to 2 years at the most. But in India, just a police officer deciding to arrest you dooms you to possibly decades of legal limbo.

          Also, my Dad at one point in his government career worked for a law enforcement agency and they made up a title and a badge for him, I think for the reason you mention. No one would respect him without it, even if he had the same technical administrative role he had without the badge and title.

          On Mon, Nov 8, 2021 at 11:09 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  3. I never thought much about Kamal Haasan, but yes he has those odd vibes in him. Those “I’m such a supreme actor and artist. I must educate people with my art and to do so I must have at least 3 roles in a movie and all the most important dialogues, because nothing less suits me”

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    • Angie – did you watch Meenakshi Sundereshwar? I just finished watching it because I needed something in the background while I was doing other things and I have so many thoughts.

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      • I still have 2 weeks of Zee subscription left so I focus on watching the movies there. But as soon as it finishes I want to see Meenakshi Sundereshwar. Is it good? Because I read that South Indians hate it, which isn’t very surprising.

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        • I don’t know what I thought about it. I’ll try and give some thoughts without spoilers. It’s one of those movies where nothing much happens. I came out of it just going “Hmm Okay. That was interesting.” I really liked Sanya Malhotra’s character in it. Even as an actor, I think she did a remarkable job showing a rollercoaster of emotions really well without overdoing anything. She was very relatable. I can add more once you have watched the movie.

          I thought the Hindi spoken by Tamilians, and without a Tamilian accent was a bit jarring and threw me off.

          I didn’t know what I thought of the husband (Abhimanyu Dasani). In some ways he reminded me of a typical, book smart but socially awkward engineer. Given how many of these type of people I know in real life (my sister went to a very fancy engineering school that was chalk full of them) I can empathize with it and even find the humor in it. For example, I love the American show Big Bang Theory that features exactly these type of people. But for some reason I couldn’t empathize much with the husband. He just kept annoying me. He wasn’t a bad person or anything but I just kept losing patience with his character.

          I think it’s worth a one time watch. Fair warning, it is slow, and again, nothing much happens so be prepared for that. I am curious to hear your thoughts after you watch it.

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          • Thank you, will watch it soon. One thing is sure – it can’t be slower than the movie I saw yesterday.

            How was Abhimanyu Dasani as an actor? He has the look of a star but is he talented?

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  4. I find Kamal Hassan really offputting as an actor. I don’t like him, I don’t think he’s good-looking, I don’t think he’s at all charming and I don’t think he’s a good actor. I know less than nothing about him as a person but I bet he’s terrible.

    Anyway, this means I can watch exactly 3 classic Tamil movies which is annoying.

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  5. For what it’s worth, looking at his political run, Kamal’s politics seem like a bit of the ‘I don’t see race’ and ‘If we stop talking about racism, it will no longer exist’ type liberal in the American context. I think the older I get and the more I see, it’s obvious that a lot of the ‘liberalness’ he was always credited with was messy to say the least.

    Kamal as an actor always been a bit odd to me. He’s clearly a man that’s puts a ton of effort into his work but somehow it doesn’t seem to matter? There was an interview where he mentioned that for a role that required him to have a gravelly voice, he screamed long and loud enough to do serious damage to his vocal cords. Dedication, sure. But I could not tell what movie that was for nor do I care. I have noticed that his singing voice is definitely off now–and not for the better. He has some really excellent performances. He’s also usually ahead of the curve when it comes to industry standards (e.g. make-up, realizing OTT was here to stay, etc…). But he’s was never a favorite of mine and I kinda get why now. He does have some very good screwball comedies under his belt that are very entertaining. Michael Madana Kama Rajan the best of them, imo. (A movie in which he plays quadruplets as one does.)

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    • Thank you! That is my response to Kamal’s performances as well! It is really clear in movies like Saagar that Filmikudhi mentions, or Ek Nau Paheli with Raajkumar and Hema Malini. Yes, he is good. But his co-stars just showed up, read the script, did the work, and their performances to my audience eyes were just as good if not better than his. So what does it matter?

      There’s a story about I think it was Lawrence Olivier talking with a young actor who was doing “method” stuff, thinking back on past emotions in his life and so on and so forth. And Olivier responded, “instead, have you tried…acting?” Which is how I feel about some of Kamal’s stories. Instead of doing all of that, have you considered just, you know, pretending? Like everyone else?

      On Mon, Nov 8, 2021 at 6:32 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  6. I’m entirely unfamiliar with Kamal Haasan, but that’s often the way with liberal men.

    How much does a person have to love Vikrant Massey to watch all of 14 Phere?

    Are you going to watch Meenakshi Sureshwendar? I did. It was pleasant.

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    • Have you seen Ginny Weds Sunny?
      IMO 14 Phere is like Ginny Weds Sunny but worse because it has honour killings mixed with comedy scenes and with a lot of confusion. I love Vikrant but I hated this film.

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  7. Here’s a true story about why I dislike Kamal Haasan so much.

    I used to work in a hotel back in the day when he and Saarika were still together. I remember them visiting the hotel, it was a celebration I think, either their anniversary, or a birthday. We had pulled out all the stops so they have a good time.

    Only Kamal was in a lousy mood, and he started to drink and drink. He got louder and became offensive to another woman seated in a nearby table.

    It got awkward. My manager went to speak to him and quieten him down. He only got angrier, and tried to grip my manager by the collar and started abusing him. Security was called, and he was escorted out.

    I still remember Saarika’s face and that of the two girls. They looked so embarassed and awkward.

    Ugh! Gross man!

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    • UGH! Yes, that is how I suspected he was. Just from stuff like the way he talks about co-stars or producers in interviews. Seems to not just lack a sense of how his actions affect others, but no care for how his actions affect others. He is the star of the show, he is all that matters.

      And what’s really amazing is that Rajinikanth sounds like the complete opposite in attitude and e everything! And yet he is the one who is lauded as the big superstar popular hero and so on, while Kamal is the sensitive “great actor”.

      On Tue, Nov 9, 2021 at 12:46 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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          • Well, he was shooting a movie on the beach near my house in Chennai. We were just star-struck kids and we rushed to the site as soon as we heard the news.

            We reached the coffee shop and started looking around. They were filming a chase scene and I was eagerly looking around and squealing and yelling his name when the jeep accelerated (I thought he was inside it) and the chase began.

            Later on, I saw a make up man putting powder on a nondescript looking guy in a corner of the room, and turned out that he was Rajni – the guy in the jeep was a stuntman.

            Anyway, Rajni paid for our coffee. And signed autographs. He even lifted my baby cousin and let her mess up his make-up and hair (he had a lot on!).

            Before the days of cell phones unfortunately, so I don’t have a picture.

            Liked by 2 people

          • YES! This is the kind of Rajini story I am used to! Kamal gives all the good quotes about loving people and stuff, but Rajini actually DOES it.

            On Tue, Nov 9, 2021 at 11:06 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  8. Question for you. Are we up for speculating/discussing the potential upcoming wedding of Vicky and Katrina? I did not believe the rumors so far, but now, I heard that people are calling the hotel where Vicky and Kat are supposed to get married and the hotel is not accepting any reservations for the 10 day period when the wedding is supposed to take place. That makes me give credence to the rumors a bit more. Also, if this is true, that makes me proud of Vicky for having a backbone (which makes him so much better than Ranbir). And it also makes me root for their happiness forever and ever.

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  9. What surprises me is that Kamal comes from a normal family. His parents were well-off, his father had been a lawyer with many connections. He was the youngest of three, his older brothers however being atleast 20+ years older, even if his parents were lenient, his brother would have been more strict.
    He is a upper caste man with an accomplished lawyer as the oldest brother .

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  10. I honestly don’t know much about Kamal and I’ve always been team Rajini in the Kamal vs Rajinikanth debate but Kamal Hasaan’s persona always comes off as pretentious to me. I get the vibes of him being like I’m better than other actors because I make intellectual movies and can play multiple different roles.

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