Friday, August 16, 2013

Bete Noire

Ladies and Gentleman, please raise your hand if you have ever heard the words Bete Noire before.  Now raise your other hand if you know what Bete Noire means.

I have no clue what Bete Noire means.  Google is your friend…and mine…so I had to google it to find out what the heck it meant.  On a side note – when did “google it” become synonymous with “search for it on the internet”.  Can I still google it via Yahoo or Bing?

I digress…

The meaning of Bete Noire is “someone or something you especially dislike”. More or less “someone/something you absolutely hate”.  I came to find out that it’s a French word/phrase.  (Since this is something related to the French, I know one of my readers (Who Posted This?) is going to rip on the Frenchies.  Go ahead, I’m ok with that.

So tell me - do you Bete Noire anyone or anything?  I most certainly do.

(Please don’t call me – if I want something, I’ll call you at 2 am)

People who go out of their way to listen to your phone conversation.
(A little privacy please?  Hello, please don’t invade my personal space.)

Traffic jams
(Why is there always a traffic jam in the direction that I’m driving?  And why is my lane always the slowest moving lane - even when I switch lanes?)

Long TV commercial breaks, especially on Indian television
(I took a nap in the afternoon, woke up and they STILL haven’t ended the commercial break yet)

People who never say “I don’t know” for any question. 
(Even if they don’t have a clue, they will just smile like an idiot as their response.)

Somebody sitting in your seat when you board an airplane
(Why does this always happen to me.  Hey pal…that’s my seat 2B.  So I want your stinky body 2 B out of my seat before you contaminate it.)

People who ignore their children when their kids are being completely obnoxious in public
(Hey parent…if you don’t discipline that kid then I will.  Don’t think I won’t.)

Long lines at theme parks
(30 minute wait for a 30 second ride.  Ugh!  Torture.  Why do we do this to ourselves.  And we pay money for this torture too.  No thanks, I’d rather chew on some broken glass).

People who laugh at their own jokes
(Ummm ok.  So tell me, was that funny?  Please let us do the laughing if really THAT funny.
LOL…HA!  Bwahahaha!  HA HA HA! 
I’m so funny today.  Yeah, except that you’re not.)

LOUD Cell phone talkers
(OMG!  Hey buddy, I’m not interested in knowing the details of your aunt’s toe surgery.  Tone it down a bit so I can discipline your kid who by the way is behaving badly)

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Thalaivaa, my view

Yesterday, we went to see the Tamil movie, Thalaivaa, starring Vijay.  Thalaivaa means Leader.  I am not a big fan of Vijay.  We read that there is a big controversy surrounding this movie. Therefore, wanted to see this movie out of curiosity.

Movie is just a mediocre one.  The usual Vijay movie - dance, fight, dance, fight. What is difference in this movie is his portrayal as the Don who is calm and collected in the second half.

Songs and music are excellent.  Music Director is G. V. Prakash (A. R. Rahman's nephew).

The story begins with Vijay living in Sydney, Australia, having his own water bottle business and having a good time winning the dance competition.  His dad (Satyaraj) was in Mumbai, is the local popular Don. After his death, Vijay takes over his place in Mumbai. And, then the usual masala.  This movie reminds me of the other popular movie, Kamal Hasan's Nayakan.

The word "Bro" (meaning brother) was uttered several times in the movie and it started to irritate me.

I read certain people in Tamil Nadu do not want this movie screened because certain dialogues are critical of the government.  Well, I have seen so many movies where the hero is critical of the politicians and police.  Nothing new in this movie.

Some friends told me Vijay has political ambitions and a few politicians are seeing him as a threat. Therefore, this objection to screen the movie in Tamil Nadu.  The only vague reference I could see was a one line where Vijay's lawyer tells him (I paraphrase):

People are waiting for you.  They want you to come as their leader.

I can understand why certain politicians take umbrage.  Tamil Nadu politicians are very sensitive.

This movie did not get Entertainment Tax Exemption because the government said it has more than 400 English words and very violent.  I am not a fan of Vijay. But this is ridiculous.

I have issue with this film portraying some people as world leaders:  Here is a partial list:

Abraham Lincoln
Mahathma Gandhi
Nelson Mandela
Winston Churchill
Karl Marx
Vladimir Lenin
Mao Zedong
Ho Chi Minh
Fidel Castro
Che Guevara
and a few others I forgot.

In my opinion, Lincoln, Gandhi, and Mandela are fine.

Churchill - I don't agree.  He is the one bad mouthed Indians. He called Indian leaders as "low calibre and men of straw".  He described Gandhi as "half naked fakir".

Other leaders - They all have embraced communism.  If you like communism, it is ok.

He could not find anyone else (other than Gandhi) from India.

Vijay trying to portray himself, in a subtle way, as equal to these world leaders? Come on, give me a break.