Oct 30, 2012

Movie Review: Ayalum Njaanum Thammil

After a case of the sniffles turned into hacking coughs and catarrhy sinuses requiring two courses of antibiotics, it was singularly apt that the first movie I ventured out to see after a hiatus should have been concerned with the medical profession. 

The theme of Lal Jose's latest is not new at all. If you have seen Lakshya, Usthad Hotel etc., you'll get the general drift. Dr. Ravi Tharakan (Prithviraj) and his pal (Naren) are feckless youngsters who complete their medical studies taking their time to learn everything thoroughly. Determined to make his son see some life, Ravi Tharakan's father refuses to put up the money with which Ravi can evade his bond. The only way he can stay in the state is by accepting work at Dr. Samuel's Redemption Hospital (a name chosen with great care) which takes care of the less fortunate in Munnar. The moment he joins up, Dr. Tharakan realizes that he has signed up for nothing less than a trial by fire.

The scriptwriters have tried to add to the suspense of an otherwise straightforward story by a reprisal of their tremendously successful Traffic's  non-linear narrative technique. Not as effective as the first one, I must say. The script stretches in places to bring out new and harrowing sufferings for the protagonist and there is one elongaaaated moment in which the protagonist behaves truly out of character (I suspect that it was added to give Prithvi a chance to do some serious emoting), but to my relief, he sprang back into action. Yes, Prithvi is Dr. Ravi Tharakan to a T.  Reema and Remya have good, meaty roles which they have handled with finesse and Samvrutha - does nothing noteworthy (another character twisted out of recognition to add to the good doctor's trials). Prathap Pothen does very well again as the exemplary and unorthodox physician who, having failed with his own son, takes it upon himself to whip up his raw junior into shape. Salim Kumar's character is a fresh source of comic relief and his interludes were really welcome.

Does Ravi Tharakan become a wonderful doctor worthy of his mentor? Does he learn to rein in his impulsive nature and unforgiving ways? What does Dr. Samuel do to guide his junior? Watch the movie to find out - I promise that you won't be bored.

Oct 5, 2012

All my glamour is gone!!!

One of the high points of my day is waiting at our gate to receive our kindergartner. I absolutely love the way he shyly smiles and holds me tight for a moment as he steps off the bus into my arms. I also have to say hi to his friend Kashi, a bright little boy with lots of curly hair and a very infectious smile. He makes it a point to greet me every afternoon when the bus stops in front of our gate and I reply in the same enthusiastic tone that he uses. These days, he considers himself obliged to make some chitchat too. For example, one day he said, "Sorry, innu ithiri late aayi"(Sorry, I am a little late today). Yesterday, as the bus stopped, Kashi shouted "Haaaayiii!!!"

Me: Haaayiiii!!!
Kashi: Ente glamour ellam poyi!!! (All my glamour is gone!!!)
Me: Meh?!?! (Imagine a cow interrupted mid-moo and you will get the sound)
Ayah: Yeah, he did say glamour...

And the bus went off, but I was left thinking...

DH and I were recently looking through our old photos spurred on by him wanting to find his high school class photo etc. This led us to checking out a lot of old photos and reminiscing about how wonderful we looked "in those days". There was certainly much lesser of us and more hair evident on our heads. DH even started estimating the ages of our elders in those old photos to see how he fared in hair loss compared with them! 

My thinking went in quite a different direction. I started thinking of what my reaction to my own pictures have been over the years. I don't remember much about my first few years, but I used to hate my pictures taken around the age of 8. That's about the time I started wearing glasses and was teased a lot about my looks. The teasers couldn't have helped it, my glasses were total granny ones - with black, tip-tilted oval frames!! I certainly didn't look very happy in the pictures I have of that time.  I think I didn't start liking my photos again till I was almost 20 years old and started wearing contact lenses.

Fast forward a few years and starting with my first pregnancy in 2004, there aren't a lot of single pictures of me and I look happy only in those in which I am clutching one or both of our kiddos. I guess I've turned critical of my looks once again because of the burgeoning weight. With that has come the tendency to stay behind the camera more than in front of it. Although it has meant an improvement in photography skills with the amount of practice I'm getting, it is also a place I don't want to be in: being overcritical of myself. I am sure when I am 60, even my ballooned figure will look pretty to me! I don't want to wait that long though. Therefore, note to self: Love yourself for what you are, not some ideal of what you should be!!!

Meanwhile I am still wondering where Kashi got his statement from!!!!

How to bring back the green...

Back in 2007, when we bought the land for Karthi, it looked like this... There were coconut trees that looked tired, a few jack fr...