Happy Birthday Hema Malini! Danced Across All the Taboos

Happy Birthday Hema!!!! Such a happy day. A happy day for a happy person.

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Pride Day Post! Pick Your Favorite Queer Anthem For Your Imaginary Float!

There are so many great song options for float themes, if you were to be in charge of making a Pride float using a Hindi film song. I’m gonna start us off with 3 songs and you can add on whatever else you can think of, or pick from these three.

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Ramesh Sippy Week Friday Classics: Sholay, The Perfect Movie

This movie has been written about and written about and written about. Usually with Indian film, it’s super easy to write about it because it is so under-studied anything I say will be original. Not the case here! This is like trying to write something new on Citizen Kane, there’s just nothing left. But I pulled up my old post, and added a bit on to it, and let’s see how I do.

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Important Streaming Sites Addition, There is a Wonderful Group that is Preserving and Presenting These Films, IndianCine.Ma

I always forget about this site, but I suppose that doesn’t really matter. I mean, they aren’t looking to get famous or reach people, they just want to archive the best possible digital versions of Indian films in order to preserve them. Anyway, I just put up a very angry and depressed post yesterday (well, angry and depressed for me, which is super cheerful and polite for most people), and then I remembered this site and felt better, so I want to make y’all feel better too!

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Upcoming Film Reviews: Ramesh Sippy Two Weeks!!!! His Films Reviewed in Chronological Order

This is exciting! And very difficult since I’ve only seen 3 out of the 8 films I want to cover. Oh well, I’ll give myself a nice slow schedule. And throw in the usual Sunday Reruns and new movies and stuff in between so you aren’t bored.

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TGIF: As the Weather Turns Colder, Which of These is the COLDEST Moments? And, Bonus, Which is Hottest?

Yes, I am still doing temperature gifs. So sue me, they are fun and I’m just now coming out the otherside of my cold. Nice thing is, I made one of my co-workers sick so I got to see it from the outside and OH MY GOSH. She is like death warmed over, and she is 7 years younger than me. I sent her home after she had to curl up and sleep on the chair in my office for a bit. So, I wasn’t being a malingerer, this cold is legitimately deadly. And that is enough reason for me to keep doing silly posts.

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Combined Birthday Post: All the Brilliant Artists of Indian Film Were Born Today, Sanjeev Kumar, Guru Dutt, and K. Balachander

This is one of those cool coincidences.  The two brilliant directors of Indian film, one from Bombay and one from the south, were born exactly 5 years apart to the day.  There is something special about July 9th.  And, just to put the cherry on top, one of the most brilliant actors in Hindi film history was also born on July 9th.

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Happy Birthday Amitji! 75 Reasons I Love You!

It’s Amitabh’s Birthday!!!!!  The second most glorious day of the filmic year (after November 2nd, I do have my priorities).  And, of course, for Amitabh, I will be doing a full 75 reasons to love him. (this is an updated and reposted post from last year)

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Hindi Film 101: Top Hits of Indian Box Office Part 3, 1971-1985

Now, FINALLY, we reach the films people know!  Which is a story in itself, the way films were ignored and forgotten during the early years, even TV only plays stuff from after 1970, let alone being able to find it streaming or on DVD or VHS.  But, setting that aside for a moment, let’s look at these new “modern” films. (part 1 here and part 2 here)

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Luck by Chance (The Annotated Edition) Part 1: Excel Logo to Mac Mohan Cameo

Like I said in my first review, I got about 5 minutes into this movie and paused to get a pencil and paper.  Because there is SO MUCH.  Not like so much depth and soul (although there is that too, that’s what my other two reviews covered), but so much data.  I know I probably missed at least half of it, but here is what I got from my 5 pages of notes. (Full Luck By Chance Index here)

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Happy Birthday Javed Akhtar! Every word out of your mouth is poetry!

It’s Javed Akhtar’s birthday today and I love him, both as a scriptwriter and a lyricist.  I could easily come up with 71 reasons, but about half of them would just be quotes from Sholay and Deewar.  So I am going to try to limit myself to 25, one for every film he wrote with Salim Khan, plus a bonus just for being him.  And I’m going to include quotes from his Salim-Javed films, because although they were both credited, it’s generally believed that Javed wrote more of the dialogue.

(This is an updated and re-posted post from last year)

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Happy Pride Day! Let’s Talk About What We Can be Proud About in Hindi Film!

There is more than you think!  I’m not just talking about Dostana, or Kal Ho Na Ho, or Dunno Y…Jaane Q, or Bombay Talkies, or Margarita with a Straw, or even Fire.  In the whole history of Indian film, there have always been those people off to the side, being themselves and being Queer.

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Jaane Bhi Do Yaaro: Definitely Going to Need a Re-Watch!

I watched Jaane Bhi Do Yaaro!  FINALLY!  After years and years of people telling me I should.  Of course, I didn’t have a copy with subtitles available to me until just a year ago, but that’s still 12 months when I could have watched Jaane Bhi Do Yaaro, and I did not.

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Ghayal Summary Through to the End! Get Ready for Ghayal Once Again!

I posted a summary of the first half yesterday, now it is time to bring it on home through to the end!  And the second half is where things get CRAZY.

And also crazy interesting from a statement on society perspective.  There is a long rant in the middle about social responsibility.  So that’s something for you to look forward too!

(Read part 1 here)

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Malayalam Versus Hindi: Thank you FullyFilmy Blog!

A friend just sent me this super interesting link, which I encourage you all to follow!  It lays out 10 things that make the Malayalam film industry special among Indian film industries.

Now, I know basically nothing about Malayalam films.  I have seen Utsav Hotel and Bangelore Days, and that’s it (feel free to give me recommendations in the comments! I’m already planning to watch Ohm Shanti Oshana next, but after that I am open!).  But I know a lot about Hindi film, and this list got me to thinking about why Hindi films don’t do these things, or in some cases, don’t do them any more.

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Boring Industrial Inside Baseball stuff

Notice how I put the really exciting picture at the top so we would remember why this really matters?

So, currently, the highest Shahrukh movie on the all time gross list for India is number 5.  NUMBER 5!!!  The shame of it!  Ahead of him is PK, Bajrangi Bhaijaan, Bahubali, and Dhoom 3.  The whole list is here on wikipedia.

Now, you know what all these films have in common?  They are all from the past 5 years.  And the film at the top is usually from within the past 2 years.  In America, we are used to that, the top grossers are always fairly recent, but in India that wasn’t always the case.  Mother India set a box office record in 1957 that stayed in place for 3 years until Mughal-E-Azam surpassed it in 1960.  Mughal-E-Azam held the record until Sholay beat it in 1975.  Sholay  held the record until Hum Aapke Hain Koun came along in 1994.  Hum Aapke Hain Koun was toppled quickly by DDLJ in 1995.  Then DDLJ lost it’s crown to Kuch Kuch Hota Hai in 1998.  That record held until 2001 when it was beaten by both Kabhi Khushi Kabhi Gham and Gadar: Ek Prem Katha.  Gadar held the record until 3 Idiots in 2009, at which point everyone breathed a sigh of release because they could start pretending Gadar never happened (very very problematic messages in that film).  And then 3 Idiots held the record for a long time, by a big big margin, until it was finally beaten by Chennai Express in 2013.  All Shahrukh fans cheered and celebrated and laughed in the faces of their Aamir-fan friends, or at least that’s what I did.  Truly, it was a magical time!

SRK@B2.jpg

(Shahrukh, take a bow!  You earned it!)

And then about 2 months later, Dhoom 3 came out and Aamir was on top again.  It stayed up there for a year, until PK came out, and then Aamir had the two top spots.  PK is still up there, but Bajrangi Bhaijaan did really well this summer and came close to beating it.  And Bahubali, of course, is a huge deal since it is the only non-Hindi film up there (although it was distributed by a Bombay based production house, Dharma, which is very important in terms of overseas awareness and national reach in India).

So, on the micro-level, this just means we all need to buy as many tickets for Dilwale as humanly possible in order to return Shahrukh to his rightful ranking.  I don’t care if you are actually seeing Star Wars, you buy your ticket for Dilwale!!!

But on a macro-level, in terms of global trends, economics, and the future of the industry, what does all of this mean and where does it come from?

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