Sunday, July 31, 2016

Pelli Choopulu: A Clean Entertainer Worth Not Missing.

By Sunaina Patnaik at Sunday, July 31, 2016 3 comments
Picture by Kamal Kiran
Everybody loves a mean cup of filter coffee, but what matters is how well it is presented. These were my exact thoughts as I finished watching Tharun Bhascker's Pelli Choopulu on Saturday. We are all acquainted with the quintessential romantic comedies that use the tried and tested formula of 'Boy meets girl, girl meets boy, boy and girl get into several fights and then fall in love'. While Pelli Choopulu is a lot like this, it is the combination of so many good things coming together that made this movie a clean entertainer.

I have always been a lover of Vinoothna Geetha brand and when I saw the first poster of Pelli Choopulu, I was pretty certain that I'd watch the movie. And the trailer simply sealed the deal for me. Right from the first frame of the movie, Tharun Bhascker's direction, and Nagesh Banell's cinematography served as a feast to one's eye. The dialogues and the language were lucid, sometimes reminding me of the usual conversations I have at home with my family. Cherry on the cake, the music by Tapeloop has made for an even delightful experience. Ever since the music released, I have been in love with the 'Merise Merise' song. It reminds me of a good old Ilayaraja composition.

We all know how arranged marriages begin in most of the cases. 'Hey, you might gain a perspective on your life if you get married' is a common line that flows in every household. That's exactly how Prashanth (Vijay Devarakonda) and Chitra (Ritu Varma) wind up together. From the trailer, you might have already gotten a glimpse that Chitra refuses to get married, but when they find a lot of time ahead of them, instead of leaving it at just that, they talk about their lives and goals. A foodie at heart, Chitra gets excited when Prashanth tells her that he wants to be a cook. They talk about their past relationships, issues with their fathers etc. Discovering a common interest or two and with Chitra's zeal to do something and Prashanth's unwavering interest to impress his to-be father-in-law (Anish Kuruvilla), they begin working together. What happens later is something that we all know.

The narration was so clean and witty that it left the audience in splits at a couple of scenes. Vijay Devarakonda's comic timing was epic, and he played a very convincing role as a clueless youngster. But it was Ritu Varma who was the soul of the movie. She breathed into the character with an ease and I'm pretty sure she has a long way to go. Adding to that, her effortlessly elegant costumes in the movie were spot on. Before I move on, I must also mention how much I loved Anish Kuruvilla's presence on screen. He practically stood out at a lot of places.

Despite having a few flaws that could be totally ignored, I could totally vouch that Pelli Choopulu is one of the most cherishable movies of 2016. And more importantly, it is going to make way for more new talent and fresh cinema to embrace our screens. As for me, I enjoyed this mean cup of filter coffee as it was served not just hot but strong too.

Happy times ahead!

P.S. Kamal, thank youuuuu for sending me the pictures as soon as I asked. You're awesome.

Friday, July 29, 2016

Mindless Thoughts.

By Sunaina Patnaik at Friday, July 29, 2016 1 comments

I just cannot tell you how I spend many nights staring at my bookshelves. I have so much to say and so many stories to tell. But the words that my mind is carefully churning do not reach the tips of my fingers. It's on these nights, I particularly wonder if I can write only when my life breaks into tiny chunks and vanishes into nothingness. There are nights and then, there are these nights. When it is raining so beautifully outside my window and I sit inside, staring at the things around me wondering if I can muster some sentences that make sense or sound warm. I stop listening to music, I stop reading and only pay attention to the raindrops creating a slow pattern of music that I go on and on to.

It's on nights like these that I think what am I going to do if I wake up one morning and fail to put words to paper?

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Mood Swings.

By Sunaina Patnaik at Tuesday, July 26, 2016 0 comments

My mood swings are like shapeshifters.
One day, they are bottled up tight intact,
The other day, they are freely flowing.
They come in blacks when I anticipate the whites.
But when I expect the blacks, it's always the whites.
Grey areas, they announce unabashedly.
But grey areas are not what I like.

My mood swings are like shapeshifters.
They chase me into the darkness sometimes,
And prance around me like sunshine, the other times.
But it's more than just the confusion, you know?
To do the unwanted.
To want the undone.

My mood swings are like shapeshifters,
Even they do not know what they are in for.
It could be fancy, or it could just be plain.
But how would they know if all they do is surprise me?

Sunday, July 24, 2016

But, Where Am I Heading?

By Sunaina Patnaik at Sunday, July 24, 2016 2 comments

I've been totally slacking off my blog and my writing (except the ones that pay) for days now and Pokemon Go must be blamed for it. Just when I figured the game isn't working and it won't for a long time, I imagined I would nicely slip back into my regular routine of life. However, I am distracted with Gilmore Girls. The list is endless, I could find tons of things that could distract me from my lofty and otherwise amazing goals. Sometimes I don't know what I am doing with my life. Or to be more precise, where my life is heading towards. I think about it often. Especially on the nights when my Wifi doesn't work.

The past few weeks have been spent in a hurry, I cannot recollect a single thing that I have done without rushing. It has been all overwhelming and with so much going on, I am still clueless as to where I am heading with my life. The whos, the whats, the hows, the whys - I am just trying to get around with all these things. Sure, the attempts and mostly feeble and futile, nevertheless, I am still trying to understand the core of what I am trying to create with my life.

When I was a child, I wanted to be a lot of things. I wanted to be a ballerina donning tulles wherever I go. I wanted to be a person who tells stories to people around me. I wanted to be an archaeologist because I figured it would be fun to be one. I had a harmonica when I was five and I played it so terribly that people around me hoped they'd die. That did not stop me from wanting to be a harmonica player. Backtracking my childhood, it doesn't come as a surprise to me that I wanted to be a lot of things. It kind of made me very happy that I was interested in a bunch of cool things. As I grew older, a certain sort of weariness and introspection took over me. I took the time to understand that I did not want to be an engineer. Nor did I wanted to do an MBA I slogged years for. I just wanted to write, be close to writing, but now that I am doing that already, people ask me if this is all I want to do or if there's more to it. And there, that sends me into a tumultuous frenzy. Because I do not truly know if there is more to my life than writing? Or if my life is heading anywhere except towards that.

Like I said, I am still not sure of what I'm doing with my life. Yet, whatever I am doing right now, it makes me feel very alive. If you know what I mean? It makes me laugh, it makes me cry and more than a million times, it makes me question my sanity and threshold levels. But for all intents and purposes, the lack of clarity is making me enjoy the moment. Even when I am suffering.

So, what did I say when I started? That I wasn't sure where my life is heading towards? Well, we shall see that it fetches a closure, soon.

P.S. Here’s something that I got published, last week:

Happy reading. Toodles!

Tuesday, July 05, 2016

You Are All You Need.

By Sunaina Patnaik at Tuesday, July 05, 2016 0 comments

You come into the world with nothing in your arms,
You find the meaning of life in melancholy and the joy of living in love.
All by yourself, stumbling upon places and people you carry within.
You fight the demons of your life, sometimes with a friend by your side.
You are taught different things, but your experiences remain to be the greatest of your teachers.

You come into the world with no survival kit in your hand,
You understand the way the world lives. Even worse, you understand it  by failing.
You learn that you don't come out of a battle without a few scars here and there.
Never place your trust in the wrong hands, you are told. But you misplace it. You squander it.

You come into the world with no plans in your head,
You stand tall beside your literary heroes, you chase the evil with the superheroes in your heart.
You walk the cities with your little heart on the sleeve and go everywhere you feet take you to.

You build your home in the darkest hours and you walk alone even in the brightest hours,
Everything you need and all that the world can hold is just inside of you. Hidden but waiting for you to discover it.
Dear man, you are the architect of your own happiness.
Make it or break it, but don't be the creator of your bitter endings.

You come into the world with all the strength in your heart,
And maybe, that is all you need. Now and forever.

Saturday, July 02, 2016

An Ode.

By Sunaina Patnaik at Saturday, July 02, 2016 2 comments

I've been told that we realize the value of people only after they are gone. I've read it in books. I've watched it in movies.

Five years ago, I've started this blog a month after my grandmother's death. I've always loved her dearly and I needed a distraction from the darkness that her absence brought. Sure, I wrote a lot in notebooks and offline mediums back then, but I needed a bigger avenue that constantly needed my attention and maintenance. I probably never realized her value after she was gone because I completely and irrevocably knew her value even when she was there.

After my grandfather's death this week, I've realized that we certainly do realize the value of a person only when they are gone. Amidst attending to the visitors and keeping a constant check on the family, I found time to mull over everything that happened earlier that day only much later in the night. And when that happened, there was no stopping. The memories flooded me from all sides, and I did not try to put on a brave facade pretending things would be all fine. I'm not sure if it's a boon or a bane, but I can remember things very vividly. Even the ones from when I was a two-year-old. I remembered the times when my grandfather took me for a walk every evening after he came back from work or the times when we went for launch trips over Hooghly. I remembered the place we went for my favourite sweets and the street food we bought together at unrecognizable streets of Calcutta. Those were some amazing days and I don't know why I could barely remember these things when he was with us. Maybe because we barely look back in time when we keep thinking about the future.

Our mind is a truly strange organ. It reminds us of the things we are supposed to remember only when it is too late. I mean, what a luxury it is to tell someone you love them when they are with you rather than realizing it only when they are gone! Isn't it what a human being lives for? The love and affection of his loved ones. This really got me to thinking - should we wait to realize the value of the people in our lives until they are gone someday? Or should we make an attempt to let our loved ones know how much we love them when they are present right in front of our eyes?

And to my grandfather, I don't wish you stayed longer. I don't wish you suffered only because we wished you lived longer. I am glad you've endured a rather peaceful death. I'm glad that you've done everything you've ever wanted to do back in your day. You walked the streets of your favourite cities. You witnessed the Independence of the country. You've been to places, met people, helped so many. You shared your life with a wonderful woman, my grandmother. You might have been a part of so many wonderful stories and you might have been a teller of so much more. But more importantly, the last person you saw and held before your death was the only person who truly loved you beyond everything - my father. What you've left behind isn't just a set of values, but lessons of life that I'll remember for a long time. May your soul rest in peace!


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