Sunday, July 26, 2015

Masaan film review – A Story that touches your soul

Masaan is a story set in real Benaras which is better known as Kashi. Why did I mention real Benaras?
This film makes you meet the other side of Kashi which is more active in the night than the day, the cremation Ghats where the dead bodies are burnt as per Hindu rituals. The cremation Ghats of Kashi has been mostly portrayed in films and serials as a mystic place but here the director, a debutant Neeraj Ghayawan and co-writer Varun Grover portrays the cremation Ghats as a usual business place where the bodies are burnt after dying.
But, the film has a hidden treasure beyond the burning of the bodies in the cremation ghats. It’s the burning of people griefs and the courage to let go their guilt to celebrate a new life.

The urge of arriving in life is portrayed by each central character of the film – Richa Chadha as Devi, Sanjay Mishra as Devi’s father and Vicky Kaushal as Deepak. While Devi wants to get out of the narrow mindedness of the city and attain more liberty in the form of experiencing love and pleasure, the other character Deepak wants to break his shackles of being a pyre burning lower caste youth of becoming a civil engineer and dreams of marrying his upper caster girlfriend.

Sanjay Mishra runs a small shop at the cremation ghat and is trying to rejuvenate the cold relationship with his daughter and in order to protect her from a scandal; he breaches his own moral principles when he forces a child who works in his shop to take part in the dangerous game of collecting coins from the Ganges.
The story brings twist in the each character’s lives when they are forced to do a soul searching. Their soul searching brings dark moments in the film when you feel sad about their lives. But wait, there is light after the dawn and no grief is permanent. The films at the end leaves you with a message that Masaan is not only about burning the physical bodies but also about letting go your grief and making your soul guilt free.

The film is beautifully written with a strong message and a good debutant director attempt towards the serious sensible storytelling cinema. The music by Indian Ocean gels with the characters lives and the city’s backdrop. The lyrics and music of the songs ‘Tu Kisi Rail si gujarti hai’ based on Dushyant Kumar’s poetry and Man Kasturi re’ are simply magical and has lifetime music value.
All credits to the Director Neeraj Ghayawan who has been trained under Anurag Kashyap and the co-writer Varun Grover for such a beautiful story. Both the seasoned and the debutant actors have worked hard on their characters and that is evident from their acting.

I want to end this review for Masaan with these few lines…..
‘Jo Man ko Chu Jaye Use khubsurat ahsas kehte hai,
Jo Atma ko Chu Jaye Use Masaan Kehte hai !

Thursday, June 18, 2015

#SniffSniff Meet – Ban Body Odour

It was a truly an eye opener meet and a wonderful Saturday, where there was lot of fun and knowledge sharing about preventing and controlling body odour. The venue was the majestic Four Seasons Hotel and the occasion was the #SniffSniff Blogger meet organized by Blogadda and Nivea India.The event started with a presentation on what is a body odour, what are the causes of body odour and how can we prevent and control bad body odour.

The bloggers took part in a blind folded game where in they were exposed to smell of different kinds and they were asked to relate the smell to a person they know. There was lots of discussion and fun by the participants.
The presenter who had done a lot of research on body odour discussed about the social stigma on body odour. Many people in India who suffer from body odour are reluctant to accept the fact that they suffer with bad body odour and hence they continue to suffer. Even their friends & families are not comfortable in making them realize about their sufferings. We discussed different ways in which we can approach people suffering with bad body odour and let them know that how they can control the body odour.

There was a surprise package for all of us as the National award winning actor and one of the most handsome stars in Bollywood, the one and only Arjun Rampal arrived in the meet. He shared his secrets of maintaining a good hygiene and body odour. The bloggers asked him some serious and some not so serious questions to which he answered patiently.

Post this, a fabulous lunch was in waiting for all the bloggers where the bloggers informally chatted with each other and how they can influence people. The #BanBodyOdour was trending all day on twitter and we realized that how important it is for all of us to tell people suffering with body odour and make it a nationwide movement.

Nivea Men which has some of the best product offerings like face wash, moisturizing cream has recent launched the new Nivea Men Deodorizer. The Nivea Men Deodorizer is an excellent product which not only controls body odour but also kills germs and bacteria.
The CEO of Nivea India and Arjun Rampal, the Brand Ambassador of Nivea Men launched this unique product at a press conference post the lunch session.
Nivea Men Deodorizer is unique in terms of its product and positioning. It doesn’t position itself as a product which will attract lots of females running after the guy. This product promises preventing bad odour and this is what it does best.
Arjun Rampal also cleared the myth that the deodorant should be used on clothes as well. This is what most of the deodorant ad shows which is simply not valid.

Overall, it was one of the best meet that I attended by Blogadda in recent times and I do feel like a Man with a changed belief about maintaining good body odour and work towards banning the body odour.
I am signing off a pic from the SniffSniff blogger meet. A day well spent which was fun, informative and truly rewarding.
Thank you Blogaada for inviting me to this event and thank you Nivea for coming up with such good products.

I attended the #SniffSniff product unveiling event by BlogAdda in association with Nivea

Monday, June 08, 2015

My Nose Knows!

People say that ‘Love knows no boundaries’, but I say that my ‘Nose knows no boundaries’. Recall the experience, when you were in a lift desperately trying to reach your floor as quickly as you can. Suddenly, a beautiful girl or a handsome boy enters in the lift and you say “Oh My God” !

The fragrance, their mesmerizing body odour makes you travel into a fantasy world and you forget that you have to get out of lift at your floor. The boy or the girl goes out of the lift but lingering behind their fragrance. You take a pause, gather some breath, stabilize your heart and mind and then close your eyes dreaming that why the hell the lift didn’t got stuck so that you could have spent some more time with the amazing fragrance.

Wait, life is not always rosy; it sucks sometime too and that’s what happened with one of my female friend.
One evening, as usual like a regular Monday, she was back from my office tired and jaded. She pressed the lift button quite few times hoping that this will make the lift arrive faster at the ground floor.

As she entered the lift and the door was about to close, someone pressed the lift button from outside. It was her tall, dark, handsome, sexy neighbor, a man in his early twenties. She had never spoken to him and now she was going to travel with him till 20th floor. That was enough time for her to make an impression. The man was having a laptop sling on his right shoulder and was carrying the latest phone model of an expensive brand.

While her eyes were secretly appreciating his beauty, her nose was behaving just opposite. His fragrance smelled sweat mixed with some strange chemical laden body deodorant.
My friend wanted to speak to him, but she could not speak as she had to put a handkerchief in front of our mouth and nose to avoid the dingy, foul smell.

Her ordeal was not over as there was a power cut and the lift was halted for 30 seconds. Those 30 seconds were the most important 30 seconds of her life. The man of her dream had turned into man of her nightmare.
She decided that she is never going on a date with this person.
She just ran out as soon as the lift opened at 20th floor and didn’t look back.

Love is important but Nose is important too. So, while kissing it’s the nose that meets the nose first, then the eyes and the lips.

“I am sharing my odour story for the ‘My Nose Knows’ contest as a part of the #SniffSniff activity at BlogAdda.”

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Ramayana The Game Of Life : Shattered Dreams - Book Review

Name: Ramayana: The Game of Life – Shattered dreams
Author: Shubha Vilas
Publisher: Jaico
My Rating: 3.5/5

It takes courage to write a mythological book and that too on Ramayana, a story which every Indian has read or watched it on Indian Television.
But, to my surprise The Game of Life - Shattered Dreams, the second book in the series by spiritual author Shubha Vilas keeps it interesting and propels you to read it further.

It’s a story which is still relevant in the modern content of life. There are a lot of questions in Ramayana, which as a reader or an audience would have never questioned like - why 14 years of exile and not 13 years or 15 years? What was going around in Dasratha's mind? How do the people of the kingdom react to the parting of their beloved prince, Rama?
The author does not shy away from taking cues from the Valmaki Ramayana but the best part is that the author tries to present his own logical thinking and in that attempt it also encourages the readers to apply their own thinking while reading the book.
The book has got a lot of depth and because of that it requires patience to read such a book on mythology. The writing style makes a reader visualize the scenes, which is a comforting factor while reading the book.
Shubha Vilas puts a strong case through this book, that the story of Ramayana is still relevant to our lives and that to adopt its teaching is the ideal way to lead our lives. He is considered to be the greatest Dharma King of all times and we as a nation still believe, follow him and worship him.

The book emphasizes the role of Dharma in our life and why we must stick to our Dharma.
The book teaches us to handle adverse situations, manage complex relationships in our life, to curb unnecessary temptations and be positive all our life.
It teaches us sacrifice for our loved ones.
I have not read Shubha Vilas first book in this series ' Rise of the Sun Prince' but after reading this book, I want to read the first book in the series as well.

Though, as part of the story its not required to read the two books in chronological order, but I want to read it because of the way the author has presented the whole story and the idea behind important decisions and actions taken by the characters in the book.
I strongly recommend everyone who likes mythological stories, philosophy and tries to inculcate principles from ancient stories into their present day life to read this book. This book is a spiritual healer and can work as an antidote for today’s modern stressed lifestyle.

My sincere gratitude to the author and heartiest congratulations for writing such a beautiful story with right explanations and forcing us to critically evaluate the actions in the story.
My rating for this book is 3.5/5 and is a good read for book lovers.

This review is a part of the biggest Book Review Program for Indian Bloggers. Participate now to get free books!

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Tata Lit Festival – Unwinding with Reading, Writing and Listening

My first ever visit to a Literature festival and I am happy that I made for the event though for less time, but still loved spending my time there.
I wished that I could have spent more time there, but none the less I would love to share my experiences.

I really liked 2 sessions which were my favourite – “The changing idea of Romance” which was chaired by Aastha Atray Banan, Sathnam Sanghera and Ashish Shakya.

I being a story lover and especially interested in humour that the actual literature, this session worked really well for me.
Especially Ashish Shakya is one of the wittiest people; I have listened to in live.

The other session I enjoyed was “Making your debut book a winner”. I have always admired Rashmi Bansal and have read most of her books. This was a very informative session and the audience seemed to be many first time or wannabe writers.

This session worked out to be a good know each platform as well as I met many of the aspiring writers as well as authors who have already made their debut.

Overall, I really enjoyed my time at the Lit fest and would love to go there again and again.

I also thank Blogadda for their support in getting to attend Tata Lit Fest.

Sunday, January 12, 2014

5 Must Watch Hindi Offbeat Movies

Thank You Blogadda for inspiring me to write again on my blog with your amazing topic of 5 offbeat films that are must watch.

So, here goes my list.

1. The LunchboxA simple story can be a great story. Every story doesn't need to have highs and lows, action and drama, romance and comedy. There are some stories which don’t have any of these but they are great stories. The Lunchbox is one such rare piece in the world of cinema.

Hats off to Director Ritesh Batra for giving us such a movie which taste will linger over so many years. The film never forces itself on the viewers and it never stretches away or makes your heart full of emotions. It just teases you with right proportion of human emotions like the best lunch you can ever have.

2. Ship of Theseus - The masterpiece by debutant director Anand Gandhi which ranges between philosophy, theology, socialism and economic. An intellectual film that will be remembered even after decades of its release.

3. Peepli Live - This one from the perfectionist Aamir Khan's production and directed by debutant Anusha Rizvi. The film picks up the socially relevant concept of migration of the farmers from their villages to the cities because of economic compulsion. Rarely, this kind of black comedy comes on the screen.

4. Shaitan - A dark chocolate that is bitter but tastes real good!

I can say that this is an out and out a Director’s cut and kudos the debutant Bejoy Nambiar , who had assisted Maniratnam in Guru as he lives up to the expectations from an Anurag Kashyap’s production.
Go and watch Shaitan because it’s dark and bitter but yet gripping and you will like it if you are not only an emotional drama lover and like watching different genre.

5. Gulaal - Though, the director Anurag Kashyap may not agree that this is his best movie till date; but for me of all the Kashyap's movie; this is the cherry. A brutal political and caste based drama in Rajasthan University with soulful lyrics and amazing acting; this red art dominated screenplay is a terrific offbeat cinema. 

The Bollywood has matured from its chocolate faced actor and cute actress drama to real men and women. The past few years have been amazing ride for the industry. The films have become real and the characters have become AAM. 

I am eagerly waiting for 17th Jan, when I will watch Miss Lovely. I am sure one of my favorite actor  Nawazuddin Siddiqui has done terrific acting and the subject of C grade cinema industry has been presented well.

This post is a part of the Miss Lovely Activity in association with BlogAdda.

Monday, October 14, 2013

Durga Puja at Lokhandwala in Mumbai

Durga Puja is another big festival in the Hindu religion. Its the biggest festival for people from Eastern states in India like Bengal, Bihar, Assam and Odisha.
Durga Puja in Lokhandwala is the most celebrated Bengali style Durga Puja in Mumbai.