Good morning, and thank you for joining me. Many of you in this room are my friends, know me and have supported me. Now everyone in this room has good reason to be critical of me. I want to say to each of you directly, I am deeply sorry for my irresponsible and selfish behaviour I engaged in. People want to know I could have done these things to my wife Evangeline, all 13 inches of her beautiful white plastic self.
I am sorry for cheating on you, Evangeline, with my iPhone. She was just too sexy.
But there is one thing I want to make clear: my wife has not given me an electric shock that night or any other night. There has never been an episode of domestic violence in our marriage, I have never dropped her either.
I am deeply sorry. But now that you know, just shut one eye like Jack Neo’s wife, okay?
I have connections in high places a friend who works in media and gets free passes, so I got to see the preview of Duplicity last night at GV Plaza. I went in with no expectations or idea about the movie whatsoever, and honestly thought that this was a romantic comedy that was going to leave a warm fuzzy feeling at the end of the night but satisfy little (like Ghosts of Girlfriends Past, which I saw last Friday). Then I saw the poster, and it said, “She’s ex-CIA. He’s ex-MI6”, and I thought, “Great, Mr and Mrs Smith 2.0”.
I started on this show after it was talked about on AfterEllen, after two episodes had been aired already (they were interested in Eliza Dushku, the star of the show) The premise was intriguing: an underground company which has the technology to imprint their employees, or rather as the show refers to them, actives/dolls, with specific personalities and skills tailored to the requirements of their clients. After the mission is complete, the dolls are wiped clean of all their memories and exist in a child-like tabula rasa state where they await the next engagement.
So I’ve been looking forwards to this for months. And by that, I really do mean the better part of the year, since the time they announced it. I was even more excited because this was a JJ Abrahms product (creator of Alias and Lost) as wellas Damon Lindelof (the brains behind Lost). So I organised (a month in advance) a geeks’ outing yesterday to watch this as soon as it opened in theatres here, comprising of a variety of my friends, both trekkies and non-trekkies. I am told I managed to convert at least one of them into a trekkie after the movie.
Update: I am sorry, I made some factual errors in my review. Spock did not originally choose the Vulcan Science Academy over Starfleet, he went into Starfleet, and then went into the path of the Kolinahru after its 5-year mission. I confused his story with that of Tuvok, the other notable Vulcan in the Star Trek franchise.
So here it is. The end. The finale of the series that has alternately kept on the edge of our seats, swear in despair, rush to the nearest bar to get a drink at the end of 13 episodes only to wait for the next season to begin, cry, laugh and generally provide a good fodder for gossip and some good old-fashioned bitchfest.
The reason this season review is two weeks late, is because I had to consult a therapist for the acute and schizophrenic feelings of loss and relief. It is kinda like ending a very bad/abusive relationship that just gets worse by the day – you are so glad it has ended (and it certainly feels nice not to be beaten up all the time) but at the same time, you have been with the woman for 5 years and letting go is hard, and you miss being around her.
So, here’s a season review, as tough as it was to write.
Warning: spoilers ahead!
Yes, I am still following this show. So sue me.
*spoiler alert for people who aren’t up to date*
I’m currently in a soundtrack craze – the (usually) instrumental, original composition accompaniment to TV shows, games, movies etc. I started off with the Wrath of the Lich King soundtrack – of course, playing the game, I fully enjoyed listening to the tracks outside the game setting, and be able to give it my full attention as opposed to it being a minor background whining while I try to kill monsters – it is as good, maybe as good as the Burning Crusade soundtracks.
Then I hit up the Lost Season 3 soundtrack – I have always loved the amazing composition in Lost, which has on occassion made me cry on certain tracks, and fear for my life on the next. The tracks are highly effective at setting the mood on the show. However, sitting down and giving the entire soundtrack a thorough listen, I found it a little one-tune and repetitive – Michael Giacchino tends to reuse the same couple of themes and give it different twists. Which, in the setting of the show, is not too bad, because it gives a very consistent mood and musical branding. But it is not that great to listen to at one shot.
Then, on the recommendation of Jason, I tried the Battlestar Galactica soundtrack. Now, I have not watched Battlestar Galactica before, though I plan to, during the holidays. But I listened to all three seasons plus the mini-series, and I found the composition nothing short of amazing. Even without watching the show and getting the emotional resonance of it (like I do with Lost and WLK), I highly enjoyed the experience. There are decidedly Indian, Middle-eastern and African influences on the composition as well, with excellent use of drums. The music is also a lot more diverse and fun to listen to – while maintaining the musical branding overall. 5 stars for the BSG soundtrack!
This soundtrack craze is likely to continue, because I find soundtracks great background to do work to – much less distracting than normal music, because there are no lyrics and it is lot less jingly. So, if I discover more good ones, expect more reviews on them.
This time, it is not a music discovery, because I am pretty sure everyone and their grandmother have heard of this movie. I managed to obtain a very high-quality version of the soundtrack (and discovered for the first time what a difference a high-quality sound file makes, and what I’ve been missing out by listening to mp3s), and gave the soundtrack a thorough listen.
Of course, Slumdog Millionaire has been a runaway success, and has been awarded and nominated for several titles. Its soundtrack by AR Rahman has already won the Golden Globes, and looks set to be on the path for the Oscars.
Is it good? Short answer is, of course, it is. AR Rahman has once again demonstrated his genius and flexibility, and given us another delectable aural treat. But I will not call it his best work, because having followed his work since the time he premiered on Roja, I can confidently say it is not. Yes, it has gained international recognition – but only because it is attached to a production which is not of Indian origin. Him winning the Golden Globes (and potentially the Oscars), is a lot like Katherine Heigl winning an Emmy for season 3 of Grey’s Anatomy, or a more potent example, Einstein winning the Nobel Prize for his discovery of the photoelectric phenomenon – he/she deserves it, but for the wrong work.
The last time his work gained international recognition was when he did Bombay Dreams and Lagaan. Bombay Dreams soundtrack was decidely unoriginal (Rahman simply reused the tunes from his former work from Indian films, which, of course the non-Indian audience would not have picked up at all), and was rather butchered by Andrew Lloyd Webber’s bad writing.
Slumdog is an original production by contrast, and includes a mix of decidedly Indian soundtracks (Jai Ho), to the extremely western (Gangsta). It would not be entirely wrong to call Slumdog‘s soundtrack AR Rahman for the non-Indian audience – a bit of a primer before you can start appreciating the true depth of the man’s work.
Originally published on Sayoni Speak
There are a few great mysteries in this world. Are there aliens out there? Does God exist? How were the pyramids built? But the greatest mystery of all, to me, is still why in the world I continue watching The L Word (and Grey’s Anatomy, but I’ve resolved to give no more airtime on this website to that particular show). As a heads-up to all our readers: a (slightly edited) first episode is available on the Official L Word podcast, free and legal for download.