08 May, 2010

My Very Own Amazing Race

The Inspiration

Its a strange coincidence that I watched Julie & Julia the same day that I decided upon a rigorous (?)resolution for myself (for further details, will have to plough through the entire post). 

The movie charts the story of Julie (played by Amy Adams refreshingly simple this time unlike her overthetop Enchanted performance), a young married woman, employed at a call centre providing counselling for 9/11 victims, who is utterly disgruntled with her life and her own knack for leaving things halfway. A second story follows Julia Child (played by the wonderful Meryl Streep, who perhaps is the Morgan Freeman amongst female actors) the wife of an American government servant, who marries her love for cooking and intense boredom and produces a wonderful cookbook: "Mastering the Art of French Cooking".  In an attempt to 'achieve something', Julie embarks upon cooking the 500+ recipes in Julia's mammoth masterpiece, all in the span of a year or 365 days. She starts a blog to chart her adventures and soon becomes a celebrity in her own right. The story weaves through the two women's lives, drawing parallels and following the laughs and goofs they make as they cook their way through boredom towards popularity.

Meryl Streep of course was delightful, with her accent and ungainly height (Julia Child was 6'2" and Meryl at 5'6" had to wear huge platforms!). And she gets more fascinating with age (ABBA lovers should see her lend that powerful voice to her cheeky character in Mama Mia, Its Complicated was worth a watch for her alone). But I could gush about her acting and her crazy all-over-the-place laughter. I could make a list of Best Meryl Streep movies ever and rant about favourite scenes. But let's not.

The Resolution

What this is really about is that I wanted to embark upon something I have been meaning to do since the time I saw Jaane Bhi Do Yaaron. I was not even a teenager when I saw it first, laughing along not because I understood it, but because everyone around me was having a great time. But I do remember enjoying watching this tall lanky bearded man, with his camera and poker face. The next time I saw the movie was several years later where I understood the humour (oh the dead body rolling down the slope!) and the subtle social commentary that would become the backdrop to most of his films. The lankiness and beard remained, the fascination grew. Sometime during my undergrad years I vowed to watch every movie Naseeruddin Shah had acted in or was remotely associated with. It was one of those "when I have more time" resolutions that manage to take a backseat in the Big Bad Race of That Thing Called Life.

[other resolutions include reading Alice in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass again, going to the Gwalior Fort and exploring every nook and corner like a self-respecting Tourist, living in The Claridges, Shimla for a night, doing the Darcha-Zanskar 17 day trek, learning how to cook the world's yummiest Russian Stroganoff ...oh its endless].

I chanced upon the resolution yesterday (the one about watching all of Naseeruddin's movies, in case you were wondering) and finding Free Time in Ample Quantities (such a subjective notion) around me, decided to take up the challenge. I have around 140 days of Variable Freedom before The Next Big Step. And 159 movies to go through (5 unreleased, so let's keep it a round figure: 155. I decided to stick to the IMDB list which has the maximum number of movies listed as opposed to the desigurus and bollymasalas). Of which 13 have been seen. These are the rules of

My Very Own Amazing Race

Days: 140
Movies: 155
Watched: 13
Net movies to be watched: 142
The 13 remaining movies will be watched in the end, as per convenience (hell they are my rules, I can make them up as I go along)

The countdown begins this Monday. Why am I doing this? Perhaps to cross off one of the million To Do lists I make all the time on variously coloured papers, different diaries, little notepads and more recently, on OneNotes. Perhaps to spend the Free Time in Ample Quantities in a more useful, self-gratifying, recline-supporting manner. Definitely to watch a very-watchable body of work from the Meryl Streep of India. And of course to rediscover my lanky man in flared pants. The bearded face with its expressions. The upside of this exercise is all of the above. The downside is that you will get to hear about it.

Here I go!

P.S: Still toying with the going sequentially or randomly, as I get my hands on the movies.


  1. ishwar kare aapki ye resolution poori ho singhjee. waise mujhe shak hai

  2. @ shakki insaan: dekhte hain kya hota hai. let us hope for the best of course.



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