?

Log in

Ratheesh KrishnaVadhyar's Journal Below are the 10 most recent journal entries recorded in the "Ratheesh KrishnaVadhyar" journal:

[<< Previous 10 entries]

September 28th, 2016
07:48 am

[Link]

Three Men in a Boat
I remember reading some extracts from Jerome K Jerome's 1889 novel Three Men in a Boat in my English reader text book during schooldays. I have never got a chance to read this book fully, but I read a graphic novel adaptation yesterday, published in the Campfire Classics series.

The book, which is based on real life incidents, narrates the adventures of three friends and their dog, as they go through a two week boat trip on the Thames. Many of the humorous situations narrated in this novel have later been adapted in many other books and movies and hence would look familiar, but the book still remains a very engaging read, and it would make us also wish for being part of the boat trip with these very funny characters. The illustrations by KL Jones are very apt for the book.

(Leave a comment)

September 25th, 2016
05:28 pm

[Link]

The Graveyard Book
During this weekend, I read the 2-volume graphic adaptation of Neil Gaiman's novel The Graveyard Book, which had won both the Newbery Medal and Carnegie Medal awarded for literature for children and young adults. The book narrates a fantasy story of a baby who escapes from being murdered, and is then onwards raised by many types of "ghostly beings" living in a graveyard. Different chapters of the book are illustrated by different artists.

I liked the illustrations by Craig Russell for one of the chapters. They reminded me of the beautiful and stylish illustrations done for world classics in the Pendulum Illustrated Series, which Paico used to translate and publish in Malayalam a while back.

(Leave a comment)

September 17th, 2016
09:20 pm

[Link]

Sairat
Watched Sairat, a popular Marathi film of this year. The film is based on a simple story - A boy and girl of different castes and financial backgrounds falling in love with each other, eloping from their native place and establishing a living in another city. Though this is a recurring theme in Indian cinema, Sairat has a refreshing feel to it, thanks to an honest narration style and good performances - especially the lead actress Rinku Rajguru was outstanding in bringing out multitudes of expressions. After the gradual progress of the tone of the movie from that of a light hearted sweet romance to a sort of thriller to a non-melodramatic portrayal of the hardships of the lovers in an distant town, the final scenes of the movie and the climax come out as shocking and touching.

(1 comment | Leave a comment)

September 16th, 2016
06:20 pm

[Link]

Rearming Hinduism
In our academic circles, criticizing "Hindu Fundamentalism" often crosses the border and transforms into criticism and mockery of Hinduism itself (I have read many articles of that kind published on Left Wing Malayalam periodicals like Deshabhimani). This is a special liberty taken on Hinduism alone, and such acts of blasting of Hindu religion and undermining of Hindu beliefs, scriptures, value systems and contributions is in general regarded as model secularist behavior in the media. In his book Rearming Hinduism, author Vamsee Juluri addresses this topic.

The first part of the book analyzes "Hinduphobic" academic studies of Hinduism, giving specific focus on reviews of the book The Hindus: An Alternative History written by Wendy Doniger, while in the second part, the author gives some of the concepts of Hinduism, like being close to nature and the ways Hindus identify with God, etc. The books seems to have been written shortly after the 2014 General Elections, and the author alludes to the victory of BJP in the elections at a few places in the book. I don't know why the author, while talking about a thousands of years old religion and belief system, wanted to present a mere election victory of a political party as if it was some major milestone. I am not sure what were the sort of dramatic changes that the author was anticipating post 2014, and whether/how he was expecting that 2014 could prove as a "turning point" of sort. I felt that such hints at giving any political color to the subject should have been avoided; It diluted the discussion in this book, which otherwise seems to be well-intentioned and is well-written.

(Leave a comment)

September 15th, 2016
09:11 pm

[Link]

Visaranai
Watched Tamil film Visaranai directed by Vetrimaaran, a brilliant movie portraying the corruption, brutality and violation of human rights imposed by the Police system. The story is narrated without any elements of melodrama, and the performances are very realistic - Overall, a very powerful film.

(Leave a comment)

September 9th, 2016
12:56 pm

[Link]

The Bitter Sweetness of Bandh
After moving to Bangalore, I have been missing the tradition of "Bandh", which used to be such an integral part of life in Kerala. I still remember the anticipation of a free holiday, and the associated feelings of pleasure and excitement, as the announcement of Bandh used to come on newspapers during my schooldays. I know many people will have very valid reasons to protest against various things through the display of Bandh, and there may be reasons for others to empathize with it. I also know that there would be many people who would be inconvenienced a lot because of the Bandh. However, for people who don't belong to either of these categories, Bandh is essentially an unexpected day of leisure when you have valid excuses to just sit and relax at home. It would be hypocritical to deny the fact that we don't welcome such occasions.

It is good to see that Karnataka is also catching up now on this tradition. Two Bandh days in two weeks! It reminds me of good old days in Kerala.

(Leave a comment)

August 23rd, 2016
01:28 pm

[Link]

India at Olympics
One more Olympics has concluded, and India is back with a silver and a bronze. While those who got the two medals certainly need to be appreciated, it is sad to see such dismal performance from the country overall in such games. A nation of 1.2 billion people, support from the Government and Media in multiple ways, and showers of rewards waiting for any winner when he is back home - and still as a team we barely manage to make it to the medal table, while countries much smaller in terms of size and resources consistently win more medals than us.

(5 comments | Leave a comment)

August 21st, 2016
07:46 pm

[Link]

Come and See
Russian film Come and See (1985) portrays the atrocities committed by the German soldiers during World War 2 at a Belorussian village, seen through the eyes of a boy who was enrolled into the Soviet army forcefully (though the boy is initially thrilled and excited about being a soldier). The detailed picturization of the war crimes, burning of villagers live after sealing them inside buildings, etc. were very shocking to watch, and this was one of the most disturbing war films I have ever watched, Kajaki being the other one.

(Leave a comment)

August 19th, 2016
08:14 pm

[Link]

The Man Who Knew Infinity
The Man Who Knew Infinity tells the story of Srinivasa Ramanujan's life, mainly focusing on his stay in England. The film seems to have fictionalized some of the aspects of Ramanujan's personal life, in the thread that portrays his relationship with his wife and mother.

Though the film is a good effort, I was disappointed with actor Dev Patel's portrayal of the central character. Somehow, he didn't match the personality I had in my mind of the enigmatic mathematician, an introvert youngster from the village who had numbers for his friends. And the fact that the entire film is in English, makes the matters worse. However, I liked the performance by Jeremy Irons in the role of GH Hardy.

(Leave a comment)

August 17th, 2016
09:58 pm

[Link]

Kammattippadam
Malayalam film Kammattippaadam tells the story of an area of old Kochi where there used to be slums surrounded by fields till the 1970s, over which many of the posh localities of the current city are built. The story revolves primarily around two brothers Balan and Ganga (played by Manikandan and Vinayakan) and their friend Krishnan (Dulquer Salman) living in Kammattippaadam, who enjoy their friendship, drinks and adventures that are mostly illegal and reckless in nature. They help the real estate mafia by threatening and displacing many of the poor families living in the area, and indirectly cause the complete transformation of the very place where they have been residing.

Kammattippaadam is a well made film, and it further underlines the skills of director Rajeev Ravi, who had earlier directed Annayum Rasoolum and Njan Steve Lopez, and the film has his signature style of narration. However, I felt that the theme had the potentials for making a masterpiece out of it, if Rajeev had given complete focus on the destruction of the cultural aspects during such "forced" relocations happening as part of real estate developments (which is not something that is specific to Kochi), and the moral dilemmas of the characters in a generalized way, instead of spending much time on the specifics of a particular crime and scenes of heroism.

Performances by Manikandan and Vinayakan stand out in the film, and they look like literally living in their roles. Dulquer Salmaan gives a sincere performance which can be termed as his best so far, though there are scenes in which his sophistication, refined behavior and dialogue delivery come in contrast with that of his friends even though they share similar backgrounds as per the narrative.

(2 comments | Leave a comment)

[<< Previous 10 entries]

Site Meter Homepage of Ratheesh KrishnaVadhyar Powered by LiveJournal.com