[MA-SOC] OT: Favorite Indian films [WAS Re: Craptastic casting]

Joel Arandia arandia at gmail.com
Sat Jan 31 23:45:38 EST 2009

I saw Hanuman once because supposedly it was THE Indian anime. It was
alright. I watched it all the way through. I think because it's based
on actual mythology, some stuff just defies logic.

On Sat, Jan 31, 2009 at 10:33 PM,  <Oneirophile at aol.com> wrote:
> Hiya Ric & Disa --
> Well, I realize we're probably venturing into OT  territory here, but what
> the heck....
> I've heard SLUMDOG MILLIONAIRE was brilliant, and I intend to  rent it when
> it's available on DVD.  I've also noticed THE NAMESAKE at  our local
> Blockbuster -- a minor miracle since the place ain't exactly known for  its great
> selection of indie (or Indian  ^_^) films -- and since  you've recommended it I'll
> probably check it out too.  Isn't Kal Penn of  HAROLD & KUMAR fame in that one?
> Anyway, of the Indian films that have been publicized on the  American
> market, my favs so far are ASHOKA and WATER -- two very different but  equally
> worthwhile flicks.
> ASHOKA, with Shah Rukh Khan (who is *gorgeous* as well as  talented), is
> technically Bollywood because it is interspersed with a few  musical numbers....
> good ones, incidentally.  However, it isn't  just splash-and-spectacle fare; it
> is the biography -- probably somewhat  fictionalized, like most big-screen
> bios -- of Ashoka the Great, the Buddhist  emperor who ruled India for the
> greater part of the Third Century B.C.   Ashoka didn't start out as a Buddhist --
> he was a bloodthirsty warrior who  converted to Buddhism, due to the influence
> of a Buddhist wife (according to  legend, anyway).  As a Buddhist ruler, he
> instituted many compassionate  reforms for which he is known to this day.  The
> film depicts Ashoka's life  and spiritual transformation, and Shah Rukh does a
> fantastic and often very  moving job of portraying the ruler's personal
> conflicts and dramatic change of  heart.
> WATER is about as far from Bollywood style as Indian cinema  can get --
> although it does have one very understated musical  number.  The film portrays one
> of the darkest aspects of  India's social history:  the forced sequestering of
>  child-widows.  WATER begins with a funeral -- the sudden death of a
> middle-aged man betrothed to an 8-year-old girl.  Though the little girl  has never
> even met her "husband", his death irrevocably brands her a widow,  and
> therefore a living bad omen, unfit to ever marry again but unable to  return to her
> family either.  The child's head is shaven, and she is taken  away from her
> parents to live in a "widows' house" with other women whose lives  were rendered
> permanently worthless (in Indian society's eyes) by their  husbands' deaths.
> In addition to the prison-like conditions of the  "widows' house", the younger
> widows -- even the little girls -- are pimped  out to wealthy men by the
> corrupt and sadistic house matron.  The film is a  heartrending, depressing, and
> revealing glimpse of the oppressive and  exploitative practices which Mahatma
> Gandhi eventually strove to abolish in his  country.
> (And now back to topic -- forgive the brief digression, but  since we're
> exchanging Indian film recommendations I thought I might as  well add my 2
> rupees.... ^_^)
> Your Burukkurin buddy,
> Jill
> + + + + + + +  + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + +
> ("Bidden or not bidden, God is present")
> + + + + + + + + + + + + +  + + + + + + + + + + + + + + + +
> In a message dated 1/31/2009 7:17:37 P.M. Eastern Standard Time,
> rtorres81 at gmail.com writes:
> The  Namesake and Outsourced were two good films I loved that had mainly
> Indian  casts. Most people that I loaned the DVD out to said they watched  it
> multiple times and bought a copy. Hmm I wonder how much money they  made
> cause when I saw Namesake it was at a small theater and when I  saw
> Outsourced it was at a promotional screening where you saw for free  but
> filled a survey out afterwards I saw it in San Francisco and New  York.
> Oh  well.
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