is mostly likely ME. I need to finish this post and get the sad one off the top of the page, because despite the ensuing sorrow on my return home I really feel very blessed indeed and strengthened by my recent trip to India. I spent three glorious weeks there with my beloved Friend Greg: two weeks in Mumbai and one week in Shimla (joined by my friends Carla—Filmigeek—and her husband at the very beginning and end of the trip in Mumbai). We even managed to fit in Diwali celebrations in both places!
I stray once again out of Hindi movie territory, tempted by the complete and utter dreaminess of Indonesia’s action star Barry Prima (thanks to Todd, whose guidance into the weird wide world of cinema has been invaluable if not always properly appreciated by me). There are two main factors which prevented me from really loving this loony film: the heavy-handed English dubbing, done by even worse actors than those onscreen—I much prefer subtitles; and the incredible amount of gore. I am not a big fan of blood even when it’s obviously fake, and this movie is soaked in it. Even the Black Knight in Monty Python’s Holy Grail makes me shudder (a not-coincidental reference, by the way).
Enough about the bad points. The Warrior does have a fair number of good ones. In fact, in many ways it reminded me of (besides Python) a Manmohan Desai film: vicious jack-booted, badly-bewigged colonial (Dutch) oppressors, one with a daughter who falls for the rebel hero; active animal participation; and an unsubtle crazy mish-mash of religious references and imagery. There is even a CSP guy in the form of the hero’s best friend to interrupt the plot with slapstick on occasion, which does actually serve as relief from all the carnage. Plus, we are given voodoo-practicing zombies and kung fu on top of all that, and—Barry Prima. He really is dreamy, even with bloodied empty eye-sockets and Christ-like stigmata.
A week ago or so, I left a comment over at Atul’s blog in which I mentioned my dogs. Atul responded with a question about my use of the plural, and I realized that I have never given a proper welcome here to my
second third (counting Gemma) little Miss Thing. Then Salim left a comment asking about Callie and I took it to mean that the universe is telling me it’s time to give the two girls who light up my life their due.
Okay, so I know I haven’t posted much lately and now that I am it isn’t even an Indian movie, but boy do I have a treat for you. Well…you might not see it that way, but I did ask over at the Facebook page if I should post it and one responsive reader said “Heck yeah, yaar!” with nobody else objecting (thanks Joelette for enabling me!). Truly in my opinion The Beastmaster is crying out to be Bolly’d up. It is Dara-Singh-sword-and-sandals meets Manmohan-Desai-clever-animals meets Hindi-cinema-separated-families meets Wadia-Brothers-fantasy-magic; but made in Hollywood so only half the melodrama and no songs, with possibly slightly better production values.
After getting emails and comments for a while now asking about a Facebook presence, I have created a MemsaabStory page there. When I figure out how, I will link the blog and the Facebook page so that you can get updates in your feed if you “Like” the page. If you don’t want updates bombarding your wall, then ignore this. I plan to try and post some of the awesome things I stumble across occasionally or (more often) people send to me too.
I know I have been quieter than usual, there is just a lot going on right now. Hopefully I will soon get back to having no life so that I can watch movies again. Until then—see you on Facebook!
Some of you noticed that I disappeared for a while (it was only a week!). I have been in Panama, visiting one of my dearest and oldest friends, Greg. He moved there four years ago with his partner (who is from Ecuador and Panama) and it was way past time to see his not-that-new-anymore home. Being a textile junkie I knew about the exquisitely embroidered molas made by the Kuna Indian women, but I confess that I didn’t know what else to expect from Panama except that it would likely be hot and there is a big canal there.
Except for the fact that we are supposed to get two inches of snow today, spring is in the air and I decided it was time for a new look.
Hope it works for you!
This particular long-overdue item that I didn’t even realize I needed until now is inspired by (ie can be blamed on) the ever-witty Amrita over at Indiequill. She told me that if I mispronounced Faryal’s name on an upcoming episode of Masala Zindabad, I could play my gori mem card to get out of it.
So naturally I had to make one!
This is mostly a Hindi film blog, but I grew up on a strict diet of Hollywood (those are my people!). There were early signs that one day the magic lunacy of “B” grade Indian cinema would suck me in, and my adoration of this admittedly not-classic is one of them. Interestingly when I began looking for it in earnest earlier this year I discovered another parallel: it’s not out on dvd and so I ended up with a pirated version made from a vhs tape. I hadn’t seen it since the mid-70s, when I saw it on television one fine afternoon after school. All I could really remember was that it made me laugh until I cried and had sheikhs, harem girl Shirley MacLaine, a seriously catchy title tune and a military pilot nicknamed “Wrong-Way Goldfarb” who couldn’t find his way out of a paper bag.