I finally found out how to spell “coup d’etat”! Thanks to a comment, because spellcheck and google certainly weren’t going to help me. As my German teacher used to tell me, French is a silly language where nothing is spelled the way it sounds. To the degree that I can’t even get close enough to google it.
Procrastinatrix just mentioned a helpful post I wrote on this, and I looked and looked and I don’t think it was a post, I think it was actually in my book. So if I were mean, I would make this headline and then the post would just be “ha ha, buy my book!” But now I kind of want to write the post! And it will be better than the book (although you should still buy the book) because I can use video link examples.
Every once in a while the war drums start beating about how item songs are the cause of all the bad things that happen to women in India, and it always bothers me, because “item songs” ends up including a whole range of songs that are completely different in meaning. Oh, and this is kind of a partner with this post that goes into what objectification means, and this post that talks about male and female gaze)
I already put up my part 1, which I am sure was not fully accurate and certainly not complete. But it is my stab at somehow pulling together what little I know into a cohesive whole, in the hopes that it starts a conversation and I can learn more from you all.
Well, I did it! I finally finished my Rajinikanth biography! Now I just have the Savitri, Hema Malini, and Shashi Kapoor biography on my to do pile. Plus various other film books that aren’t star memoirs. Anyway, now I am ready to very tentatively try to put together some kind of narrative of Rajinikanth’s life, based on the movies I have watched (far more than I realized!), and this book, and information I gathered elsewhere
No particular reason to do this, I just find it interesting to look back at the past 25 years of film through the career of one man. And, I guess, it is also good prep work for the Thugs promotion campaign that is about to start, reminding us all that the road to “perfect untouchable Aamir” was a bumpy one. (part 1 here and part 2 here)
This is fun for me! Getting to articulate and remember all that really cool stuff I got to read and learn and talk about in grad school. And now the really fun bit, the original work of applying those theories to Indian film where no one else has really done it before. If academic press was interested, I could get this thing published and get a book deal or something. But they aren’t, so I get to provide it to you lovely people on the internet who are.
This is one of those Big Big essays. And I am very sleep deprived and stressed right now which, strangely, puts me in the perfect frame of mind for this particular discussion. My brain craves theoretical instead of practical concerns.
I was feeling bad for writing such light weight posts lately, and then I remembered, oh right, I watched 3 movies this weekend and wrote 6 full length reviews (2 each) for them. Just, not everybody was interested in those reviews, so for some of you this is a pretty light week. To make up for it, I pulled out some of the more general discussion sections of my reviews of Karwaan and cobbled together a Hindi Film 101 out of it.
The final post in honor of Amitabh’s second birthday, bringing his life somewhere close to the present day.
In honor of his second birthday, I am reposting all my various Hindi Film 101 posts related to Amitabh. This one is mostly about Rajiv Gandhi, but I can’t talk about Rajiv without also mentioning his best friend since childhood, Amitabh(Nehru Gandhi part 1 here, part 2 here, part 3 here, part 4 here)
Every August 2nd, Amitabh and his fans celebrate his “second” birthday, the day he came back to life after dying. So it is also a good time for me to repost my post explaining what that was all about and what happened.
Last section! Bringing us through to the present day (finally) and the situation now as movie theaters close their doors and the internet struggles to replace them.
Second to last section! And all about the American market (boring!), but you have to understand this market first before you can understand how the methods are being exported to India and Indian content.
Ashish in the comments suggested a list of sad dying people movies in honor of the Fault in Our Stars remake. And I am running with that! Oh, and SPOILERS, some of these films have a slow reveal, but if they are on this list, you will kind of know what they are about. On the other hand, I know there are some people who really love those sob-until-snot-runs-out kind of dying young films, and if you are looking for the best possible version in Indian film, this is what I have come up with.
This is probably a very dull series for many of you, but by golly I am going to put my boring years of studying media history and analysis to use! And anyway, I find it interesting, even if you don’t.
This is one of those posts that says stuff we all probably already knew on some level but never said out right. So if you read the headline and went “oh yeah, I know everything about that”, don’t bother reading on. But if this is a new concept to you, I am here for you! Especially because Sacred Games has made it newly relevant.
I completely missed the coverage of the latest Ambani wedding, but I can leap in last minute to give the absolute basic bare bones information about the family for those of you who may not know about them. They are soooooooooooooo important in India, and yet tend to stay out of focus in the rest of the world, so you may not be aware of them if you live somewhere else.