The sun is shining - The bold voice of a mind.

I started this blog as a forum for me to review the things that touched me in any way. I thought it best now to review a blog.
Started reading her blog roughly about 2 years back and had got motivated to start my own but just did not live up to her capability of writing regularly and gave up finally.

Speaking her mind aloud, as she herself says, she writes really well with a lot of conviction a variety of topics.Right from being so girly and flaunting her cooking attempts on her blog, to being so frank and proud about being blissfully single, she is one smart woman. A rare combination which is an image of her that I have painted from following her blog.

She writes unasssumingly and frankly about the many things in her life. Reading her posts can take you on an emotional ride making you feel good about living away from home and at the same time miss home so much. She has got the magic in her writing to draw her readers come back to her page and wait for her posts.

The reason I enjoy her blog is not only because I can relate very much to her blogs like while moving homes; feeling like not letting go of her collectibles , how bad a hair cut can make you feel and so many more but also because she is smart and yet a little girlish on her blogs . I enjoy reading her blogs on how she finds most girls silly and some guys preposterously stupid. She has written through all her experiences in the US of A from the time she started off there by counting every cent in true style till what she is today.

The young school teacher in India who turned out to be a complaning-about-assignments & cursing-the-instructor grad student in the US, a strong willed individual enjoying the stark Indo-American cultural differences to now being an independent working woman . She is well worth the read.
Well done sunshine . Here is this post dedicated to you and your blog.

I am placing more than my "2 Pennies" on this one.
This review was posted with her consent about the content

Slum Dog Millionaire: Bottomless optimism is the bottomline

Slum Dog Millionaire: Bottomless optimism is the bottomline
- - If it is to be, it will be.

This blog is not going to talk about how it depicts a low esteem of India  or about how this movie showed to the rest of the world which already thinks that every picture of a slum should be of India, or about the guilt trips made by all the Indians in getting reminded of the SLUM Children while we are basking in all the luxuries of life or if it really deserved those Oscars or not. 

It is just going to talk about the brilliance with which this movie is made, its fiction aspects, its theme and its fairy tale ending.

The movie is based on Bottomless optimism, how fate and just hoping against hope to have your dreams come true ; still making all the attempts  and taking all the risks to get there . The story is about how a young lad who loses the connection to his love to fate, lives his life just to realise his dream without forgetting her even for a moment. He gets on TV on a quiz show which could earn him a million bucks. He being no genius, fears nothing, though being mocked of his social status in the show, remains unpertubed and answers every question by just recalling the incidents in his life. 

It is optimism all the way. 

He hopes to find his lost brother's number when in a Call Center, he does.
He hopes to see her someday, he does.
He hopes to have her meet him at the railway station one evening, she does.
He hopes she will watch the show, she does. 
He wishes she will be his, and fate has it for him , SHE IS.

All this not because he was lucky but because He wishes with all his heart and soul with all the optimism in the world.

The feeling of a win elates you the most only when you are not conscious of your winning. You could read that on the boy's face, for what he was playing for is not the money but for the love of his life. Road side cricket, film star worship which can make a kid jump through the hole of a latrine, temptation to cheat on a game show, fake tour guides, how much socio-economic status can matter in your lives, child hood miseries of the slums, it captures the truth of India proudly packaged with India s very own extraordinary music. It Happens only in India.

True to its theme, they emerged out winners of the Oscar, as they sing in the movie
"Everyone's a winner now we're making that fame". 

If it is to be, it will be.

From the lesser mortal..

From the lesser mortal..
Fountainhead - Ayn Rand
I had stayed away from this book for years despite hearing good reviews with the stance that I will never be able to understand something that is so taxing on one's intellect. It doesn't do well to my ego, if I can’t comprehend what I read. But this one did quite a great deal to my ego.
I recently read Ayn Rand. Period. I am not going to try to review the book because I am just not going to be able to pay even an iota percentage of the kind of review it deserves.

Most of the characters in the book, the author's philosophy and ideas are left to be interpreted by the reader and that is what I love about the book. The book transports you to a whole new world. You think through every phrase in awe of the author's intelligence. Every character is crafted and the way the thoughts running in the minds of the characters is written in words is sheer brilliance.

The hero, Howard Roark, an architect is a man who pampers his ego, stands by his principles, gives no damn to anyone's views of him or his work. He is an ideal man who believes that every second thing on earth is only important after the self. The heroine, Dominique is a person with a great deal of strength and character , does what pleases her, firmly believes that she lives life only to meet a man of Roark's character. She hates out of love for her man, hates him because of a deeper hatred for the world which she thinks is not suited for people like herself and Roark.

Dominique believes that the world does not deserve the greatness of a person such as Roark. His success and good work will only eventually destroy and ruin him; It pains her to see somebody else destroy him, so she ventures to destroy him herself. She decides that she is not going to give the world the luxury of having people like herself and Roark. She does not even wish to give Roark herself, thus indicting defeat on to him and ruins herself in the attempt. Roark just lets her go for her to go out and realize for herself that if he is not one person who is going to be hurt or bogged by the society in any form. Any form of torture that the society thinks has subjected him to; he will only enjoy and emerge out of the struggle in his unique way.

The plot revolves around how the genius in Roark fights the stigma that society attaches to a student expelled from school, still would not give in to the society’s views, his struggle through the battle of life amongst characters like Keating. He builds masterpieces like Heller house, a Gas station and the Stoddard temple, highly criticized by the collectivist society. His love for his work makes him to allow his friend to take credit for his work but only letting him go to with the price that he leaves his work unaltered. When the friend defies, he strikes back in true style.

In a world of the mediocre as advocated by the Toohey’s, everyone is engulfed in opinions of others ; success and greatness is measured by opinions of others on your work and you. This is the world that Dominique despises and Roark just wouldn't care less to even hate. His character stands out when he comments on Wyanand's suggestion of the Stoddard Temple statue should have been his instead of Dominique, that he is too egotistic to be a symbol for anything. Characters like Wyanand, Cameroon complement the theme really well with strikingly distinct, individualistic characters.

The book preaches loud that self-pride and ego are the biggest virtues of mankind. Shouldn't the yardstick for one's degree of perfection be one's own previous best self. A job is best done only if the doer thinks that it is. Only when one feels in the deepest of one's conscience that it is not one's best, only then should others' opinions matter. You are your worst critic.

Reading the book, though in a slow pace, forces you to think; it hurts the egotist in you, just making you realize and hit you hard on your head and wake you up to say it loud and ringing in your ears that what so ever, you called as EGO thus far is insignificant and that the egotist in you is mere third class to the true EGOTIST in Roark. Count me in as one who got hit hard on the head. It awakens the rebel in you, if you thought you are independent and individualist, living the life that you had dreamt up for yourself , the author shocks you with her ideal woman , a character you get jealous of.

Understanding the characters in the book lead you to defy the meanings that you had conjured up in your minds and the beliefs you held strong thus far when you contemplated words like egotist, individualism, perfectionism and the likes. If you read this in your teens, it sure is going to inspire you to be an architect. If you read it in your late twenties, it sure puts the “I” in you to shame.

Now, after enough ranting of the niceties of the book, this is to tell my blog that I am frustrated after reading the book.
P.S: I am not exaggerating one bit, when I say, I wrote this blog in bits and pieces of scraps whenever I thought of this book and its characters almost for a couple of weeks after I read it. I took a great deal of effort to edit this piece and present it in this blog trying to capture all that I wanted to say.
Yeah, For Whatever it may be worth.

The strength of a Thousand Elephants

The strength of a Thousand Elephants - Vaaranam Aayiram

Well, after reading a few reviews of this movie on blogs, I was tempted to write my own. The only other movie review I had ever written was of Guru and been a long time since I blogged too. This is not going to be the cliched "every scene is liking a painting or is a poem".

An ordinary man's life, about the wonders that one can do if one can believe in one self., middle class family dreams and the subtle unplanned ways in which the dreams are weaved to reality are all the aspects I loved about the movie.

Love - at - first sight can make you smile only if it comes from a classy director like Gautham and an unassuming Surya.The music is heavenly, the lyrics mind blowing and moves any one to emotional stances of love and can bring a smile to any face when listened to.

Yes, if you thought that an ordinary man being unable to meet his family expenses sending his son to the US was far fetched, then welcome to the middle class family. Am sure many of us , from upper middle class families agree and relate to this even if it does not mean as extravagant as flying abroad to bring home one's love . Parents will go that extra mile in seeing their children live their dream even if means cutting down on their retirement saving benefits.

The agony that the parents go through when seeing the drug-addicted-son for whom they had dreamt some doozie dreams all their life is well crafted. The confidence the father has in himself and his son by talking him out of the habit and trusting him and allowing him to take a break are all scenes which speak volumes of the strength of the father-mother-son characters which is the strength of a Thousand elephants personified - Vaaranam Aayiram, indeed.

The love between the Surya - Simran couple is beautifully painted. You give 100% marks when Simran chides angrily seeing Surya reach for a cigarette even in a hospital after being diagnosed with cancer and he goes "Darling " :)

The second love for the hero is enacted beautifully and the sophisticated maturity with which Divya explains "I was happy for you" when she realised his love for Sameera. The innocence with which she waits for years without hearing from him about her love with the silent hope that he would come some day is cute and doesn't give the "oh-so-cliched" tamil movie feel.

Full credits to Surya - Sivakumar must be a proud father and Jo the much envied woman in town and Goutham, a proud son of his late father.

A delight to watch and we could relive and recollect "My Daddy strongest and My Mommy Best "