The Changing Face, Sorry Chest, of Bengali Cinema

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Popular Bangla movies. There was a time when the problem faced by the hero heroine used to be —guy belongs to religion 1 and girl belongs to religion 2 , guy loses memory, guy rich girl poor, girl rich guy poor, rural-urban tension………..familiar, comfortable topics.

But breasts ? A Bengali movie where the point of tension between the hero and heroine is the expanse of cleavage ? Chobi Biswas and Pahari Sanyal, for whom a Hindu-Christian marriage would have been the thin edge of the wedge, must be turning like tops in their graves.

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The Greatest Conspiracy—–Ever !

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The greatest mystery in the world———-what is the Holy Grail ? How were the pyramids constructed ? Who made the scribblings in the Nazca desert?

No sir.

It is—” Who character-assassinated the Pandavas ? And why?”

The first answer we still do not know. (I have my hypothesis—will talk about it at the end) But some of the greatest minds of this age have at last put their fingers on the answer to the second.

It was all a part of an insidious plot to denigrate Hinduism.

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Jo Bole So Nihal—-the Disaster

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Jo Bole So Nihal—-a horrible piece of putrid trash like so much of muck that comes out of Bollywood every Friday. Sunny Deol saving the world, bashing up the baddies, romancing girls half his age, screaming like a bull undergoing castration——standard staple tripe that does decent business in the Northern distribution belt but goes belly-up elsewhere. Zor, Ziddi, Farz, Jaal-the Trap, Maa Tujhe Salam……..the list is endless. And forgettable.

But this is one Sunny caper we cannot forget. Or ignore.

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Run Jhola Run

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Saisuresh Sivaswamy rues the death of activism in Mumbai in his column in Rediff. His point: Mumbai could not care less for the procession led by firebrand Medha Patkar in support of slum-dwellers whose dwellings had been raised to the ground. In previous decades under the stewardship of Shabana Azmi and a host of other luminaries, Mumbai would have been brought to a halt by the sheer weight of passionate numbers. Now there is no more sound and fury. He wonder why.

Maybe the answer lies in the question itself.

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Revenge of the Sith—the Review

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A caveat: I grew up watching Star Wars. My dad took me to see Star Wars Part 1 (now Part 4) in Metro theatre, Kolkata in 1980 and ever since then I have been a junkie. In 1981 when my dad was a visiting professor at Cornell and I was going to school in Ithaca, I got further sucked up into the Star Wars ethos buying almost 20 action figures and watching the next installments of the epic and fighting with my schoolmates of whether C3PO was cooler or R2D2. Hell I even saw the cartoon spinoff—the Ewoks whose title song went :

We are the E E E E E Ewoks, one happy happy family.

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