Bangalore Intl Film Fest

Posted by Anantha | Posted in | Posted on Friday, December 28, 2012


Pacha (Bolivian)
Found this as pointless meandering. Could not connect to what ever happened on screen, so much so that, I walked out of it!

Firingoti (Assamese)
T..o....o.... S...l...o.......w... A film critic once said, he felt his finger nails growing while watching a Hindi movie. I understood what he meant after watching this one.

Rust and Bone (French)
An out and out commercial movie. Delete those passionate love making scenes and add some songs generously, this could well be our own Bollywood movie. Loved the sleekness in entirety.

Noor (Pakistani)
The real Khusru who played the lead role Noor was deadpan. Nor the other actors seemed professional. The script seemed flawed and left me wondering what made the jury pick this one for the film fest.

Monsieur Lazhar (French)
Some movies have the warmth. This is one such movie. An illegal immigrant manages to get a job in a primary school in Montreal as a replacement to a teacher who would have committed suicide in the very classroom she teaches. The movie is about how the children cope up with the shocking death of their favourite teacher and how the protagonist learns to be a teacher! Though I felt the climax lacked the intended impact, as I said, it surely left me feeling warm. And I must mention, Mohamed Fellag who plays Lazhar is an awesome actor. Loved every bit of his acting in the movie.

Kauwboy (Dutch)
A toddler rescues a baby crow from the nearby tree and rears it in his home against his father’s wishes. The story is about how the baby crow plays a role in balancing the emotional equation between the father and the son. The actor who played the small boy is so natural, in places, it feels like the camera just followed the boy candidly everywhere he went. Pretty slow in pace, but the kid made me sit through till the end.

The Clown (Brazilian)
This was the last movie to be screened in the fest. And it was an awesome ending for the fest!
It is about the father son duo who run a mobile circus tent in Brazil, who also are the clowns in their shows. The nearly broke company and the monotony of the shows makes the son quit his father’s company and he starts searching for a new job which gives him a stable life, a Govt proof ID and social security number. But, after getting the ‘breath of fresh air’ in his new life, realizes it was natural for him to be a clown. ‘As cat drinks milk, rat eats cheese, he had to be a clown’. In his short stint outside his travelling circus company, he realizes there is no other better job than to bring smiles on the faces of the people. 
     We are shown in many of the shows the father and the son perform, the kids enjoy their shows the most [I believe those were candid shots]. The humour in the movie treats its audience also as kids – I did not mean it insults your sense of humour, it just teaches us to laugh like kids to some silly but genuine humour. 
Along with Monsieur Lazhar, this also is an official entry from their respective countries for the Best Foreign Film category in the 85th Oscars. I am not sure, how good are the other entrants, but my heart goes for The Clown.

Singapore Trip!

Posted by Anantha | Posted on Saturday, December 15, 2012


At last, a vacation to Singapore with amma materialized. Was planning for this since August, ever since amma got her passport. As per the plan, my cousin and my uncle too were to accompany us. Since my cousin dropped out because of his tight project deadlines, only my uncle came with us.

Highlights of the trip:
  • Though the time of Christmas and New Year proves little expensive to visit Singapore, but to see the city all geared up for Christmas decorated with Christmas trees and with colorful lights was invaluable. 
  • Songs of the sea in Sentosa Island is just marvelous  The laser animation show projected on the screen of water(!) by the sea shore with the combination of air, water, fire and the perfect music made it unforgettable.
  •  Got to walk around the Singapore Flier – Singaporeans answer to London Eye, which also has Singapore Grand Prix track adjacent to it. FYI, Singapore conducts the F1 race on their roads, there is no special circuit for the race. It’s for you to think of Hemamalini’s cheeks now J
  • Happened to strike a conversation with a civil engineer from India, who was working on the construction sites of Jurong Island. Jurong Island is a man made island made by reclaiming the land from the sea. With a desperate need to increase the land area, with Malaysia to the north, this is how Singapore is expanding.
  • A locality called Little India which is the place for many Indians in Singapore has a very old Mariamma temple. Even Chinese consider this as lucky for them and participate in the annual fire walking festival in huge numbers!!
  • Mustafa Mall – There is nothing on earth that is not available in this mall! You name a product and Mustafa will have at least 5 varieties of brands of that product. 
  • I was awe struck by the Metro trains of Singapore which run mostly underground connecting all the major parts of the city. These trains do not have the concept of platform. People board the train using elevator like doors which open automatically only when the train arrives.
  • In our short vacation of 4 days, I went for a jog too on one of the mornings J Got to run on a jogging track on the shore of Singapore river which led to Singpore Flier. While returning to the hotel, was lost just near to our hotel as GPS wanted to test my sense of directions. Then managed to return to hotel with the help of local people J
  • Lights, Camera and Action show in Universal Studios is fabulous. With a short introductory video by Steven Speilberg, the show demonstrates the creation of a stormy weather and turbulent sea in New York city with all the special effects.
  • Took a foot massage in a parlor in China Town. It was worth the expense.
  • The pool on the 3rd Floor of a mall at Harbour Front is a serene place worth spending hours holding a book or a coffee mug or both. With the sprawling sea in front and a distant Sentosa island across the sea, the view is magnificent. 
Finally, the best part of the tour was none of the above but the wonder in amma’s eyes when she saw the white clouds from the window of the aircraft and said, ‘those clouds look like mounds of cotton’.