The Bollywood of Childhood

You can never forget Bollywood of 1990s. There were some of your childhood movies right there. Those films became your favourites quick enough, and after watching them on a VCP or VCR, you felt so good. To get those video cassettes, you had to wait for such a long time, and once you get the film you have been looking for, it was the best feeling. Finding Hindi movies was a process which was achieved by watching Chitrahaar, just like the Malayalam movies came in Chitrageetham. Those movies with good songs always had an advantage, just like the favourite actors and actresses attract us to the cinema. The following were my favourites of the time.

1. Sabse Bada Khiladi (1995): I had to start with Sabse Bada Khiladi, one of those movies which I watched at the ancestral home. It is to be noted that I never liked those over hyped romantic movies of Bollywood. Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge was never my kind of movie, and Kuch Kuch Hota Hai never came close to being an interesting flick. Akshay Kumar movies were my type then, and this one in particular was always in my mind. It proved to be one effective thriller then, and I wouldn’t think otherwise even now. “Bholi Bhaali Ladki” is a favourite even now, and the action hero whom we knew the best was Akshay Kumar, and this one was a perfect khiladi.

2. Gupt (1997): It took me about two years to watch Gupt, because from the songs, it feels that the movie is a love triangle – one of the best suspense thrillers of all-time was thus misunderstood with its songs. But this turned out to be an all-round film at that time. It was a romantic suspense thriller with comedy also present there. The stylish movie has so many songs which we still listen to, and none of the new Bollywood songs could match this one with music. Bobby Deol was one stylish action star at that time, as we can see from this movie, even though Soldier might be the movie which gave him that title with clarity – that one was also the first movie I watched with him in the lead.

3. Khiladiyon Ka Khiladi (1996): I was a big WWF fan at that time, and when the Undertaker was coming to Bollywood, even though it was the imposter version and nor Mark William Calaway who performed in wrestling as the “dead man walking”, one could only get more interested than ever. Another wrestler, Crush was also features in this movie which had a lot of action going on at all times. Even though it was quite a long movie, it was never boring, and you are always waiting for the Undertaker to come to fight. It was one of those movies which decided to think beyond the usual limitations, and among the Khiladi movies of Akshay Kumar, it does have a special place.

4. Soldier (1998): Preity Zinta had already made her film debut in a supporting role in Dil Se, and “Jiya Jale Jaan Jale” was one of the most popular songs with its Malayalam words. But Soldier was her debut as the leading actress, and this heroine was one which everybody loved from this action thriller. Bobby Deol further established him as the action hero, and the film had so many lovely songs. There was no part of this music which we didn’t love. This movie was also remade into different languages, and a Tamil version actually released more than ten years later, asserting the film’s worthiness. The song “Soldier soldier” still remains in the USB in my car.

5. Khiladi (1992): From this movie onwards, we have known Akshay Kumar with the film’s title, and so many movies with the name “khiladi” in the title have followed, but nothing after Khiladiyon Ka Khiladi maintained that quality and essence. Still, Khiladi was one of the real thrillers of the time. There were some good songs, and even though a thriller, there was a funny side, with Johny Lever coming out of nowhere to deliver the best of them. There is also a fine twist coming in the end, and you need to be ready for the same. Even if you watch this movie now, it can still make that fine impact. If a good movie can be made with the name “khiladi” in the title, it would be an interesting watch.

6. Baazi (1995), Damini (1993) and Angrakshak (1995): Aamir Khan takes us into the action thriller genre nicely with Baazi, and Mamta Kulkarni is once again in one, like in Sabse Bada Khiladi which released in the same year. It does have elements from Die Hard, but it was indeed working very well. At the same time, Damini is one of the best movies with the leading actress having the much needed significance. Meenakshi Seshadri does a perfect job there, and the dialogues of Sunny Deol in the courtroom are to be remembered. Angrakshak is another movie that comes to the mind, and the political side of this particular film with Sunny Deol in the lead, is relevant even today.

<—Click here to go to the previous post.

<— Click here to go to the last film review.

***The images used in the blog post are from the respective films on bookmyshow and youtube used for supporting this particular post on the blog only.

***These are taken from childhood memory, and therefore, none of these films might feel the same if I watch them again now.

TeNy

UT99: Gaming Nostalgia

Unreal Tournament, with the original one often known along with the year 1999 or with the Game of the Year Edition addition to name (UT99 or UT:GOTY) was one game which changed our gaming concepts, a very long time ago. Coming from Epic Games and Digital Extremes, this was the second release from the franchise, and managed to make all the impact by revolutionizing the gaming idea with its arena first-person shooter mode which involved playing against computer as well as other human players in multiplayer mode. I remember this game as the first one which I played online with friends during the early years of the new century.

The game’s domination mode which involved the capturing of control points and defending them, was my favourite during the time. During the lock-down period, I did spend enough time playing the game through LAN, along with Age of Empires 2: Conquerors and Warcraft III: The Frozen Throne. It was a nice refreshing of those good old days for me. I would play Unreal Tournament’s original version any time again, and Unreal Tournament 2003 and Unreal Tournament 2004 which came after this game were not that effective in comparison, which makes this version the one game which I might never forget. Remember that there is also a fine background story to this adventure which involved a lot of shooting. There is nothing that matches a perfect head-shot with a sniper rifle or the heated shrapnel launched by a Flak Cannon.

This pyramid level arena has us fighting for our lives in space.

A Gothic model of an arena will have us fighting hard.

A graveyard level is special for Halloween and the inner horror.

The level set on a galleon had some fine moments with visuals.

Sometimes, a few head-shots which a sniper proves to be the best.

This arena map called DM-Hyperblast has been a crowd favourite.

This is an arena which reminds one of hell & those Doom games.

Nothing suits Unreal Tournament 99 like the blood-red colour.

Another level in space means another chance for defying gravity.

DM-Morpheus map is the arena of suicides by falling into space.

***All images are from my game-play with Unreal Tournament much earlier.

<— Click here to go to the previous post.

TeNy

Guptaji Knows the Best

Vampire Owl: You are asking why should we have food from there? Reason one is that it is free food which should be given respect and the second reason is that the girl is so cute; she looks like Selena Gomez.

Vampire Bat: What? I shall do this alone, thank you.

Vampire Owl: You don’t want my highly intellectual ideas on food?

Vampire Bat: No, because I know that it begins and end with eating.

Vampire Owl: See, this is why I have to bite random people.

Vampire Bat: I shall just write and will let you read it, okay?

Vampire Owl: I shall wait, but you know that I am a busy owl. I need food.

[Stares at the wall].

kellog (1)

Let me come up with a flashback here. Kellog’s Corn Flakes has been my favourite food for quite a long time, and as a child I loved it. Then there was Kellog’s Chocos to join the party, and there were offers like free dinosaur toys with the packets. Everything was so good at that time, as there was nothing much to think other than to eat some Kellog’s and then again eat more of the same.

That was quite a long time ago, and Kellog’s still remains a favourite. Lets take the instance of Guptaji’s house. Everybody wants to have food from that one place which is Guptaji’s house. It might sound strange, but actually it is not that surprising, as long as our nostalgia is alive. There was that time when we friends used to have corn flakes together – that was so long ago, but still has not faded away.

Kellog’s and childhood were best friends, and now I am looking forward to the Sitaphal Cornflakes about which it is written on the Facebook page, and the related details are provided. Custard apple and cornflakes have never been my combination, and the one big truth is that I have never had custard apple except for in the form of ice cream – and walnuts make some nice addition to the same.

kellog

Vampire Owl: What is this one? Apple Cinnamon Cornflakes? I will have that one. You should let Guptaji know. Look at the apples. I need to eat them right now. I haven’t rested on an apple tree for years.

Vampire Bat: You shouldn’t interfere. I shall bring a portion of everything. We are not going together because you are a Vampire Owl of the food.

Vampire Owl: I hope you do realize that the jackfruit tree branch near Guptaji’s house is our owl territory.

Vampire Bat: You should see this one. Cornflake Popcorn Clusters. I have never seen something like this before. See the combination? We can have them while watching one of those vampire movies with happy horror endings as serial killer murders them all. It is bloody new and looks so awesome.

Vampire Owl: Walnut Cornflakes Chocoballs! It is something that I have never seen. We should have this one with horror movies. Popcorn was always old style. Guptaji will have this one at home for sure because it is a special one.

kello

Vampire Bat: I have no courage to see any more. I am going to Guptaji’s house. There is a nice mango tree on the left side of the dining room. I shall go and hang from there.

Vampire Owl: I shall be around too. Let me know when the smell begins to make the impact, and my presence will be there! Guptaji, here we come!

Vampire Bat: Do have focus though; the aim is to taste, not to finish everything available there!

***All the images used on this blog post are from the Facebook page of Kellog’s (which I have mentioned below) from where you can get some interesting information about working with cornflakes too. With over one hundred recipes, Guptaji and family are ready to work some magic with you! How can we miss this opportunity? Check the following links for more details:ย https://www.facebook.com/anaajkanashta andย https://www.youtube.com/user/kelloggindia

TeNy

Nostalgia: New Version

While we were shifting, I found something which was thought to be lost, a memory of something which goes back fourteen to fifteen years or so, and the one reason for which there will be more nostalgia than most of the things of that time. I wouldn’t call these toys, but the remnants of what used to be my little life which was lost, and even as it remains pretty much aimless, I find this discovery as a good omen.

It becomes only a necessity to dig up all of that nostalgia, as it is what defines us and makes us ponder about that past which has been lost and buried in a coffin under the soil of all that nonsense which we had to put into our heads. There is always the need for some of it to come alive – for we have none of them right now, as we move on through an artificial life, unlike what we know during our childhood days.

Remember the GI Joe Ads on Doordarshan, "Go GI Joe"? :D

Remember the GI Joe Ads on Doordarshan, “Go GI Joe”? ๐Ÿ˜€

The first part of my nostalgia consists of those G.I. Joe action figures. Yes, now you know why I have been rating those two G.I. Joe movies, Rise of the Cobra and Retaliation very high – it comes from the childhood memories, of that world which had very high opinion of them right from the moment they replaced the toy cars which had replaced those cute little dolls themselves a lot earlier.

Introduced to me by my cousin brother, I had nine of those action figures from Hasbro. He was the expert right there. I always prefered the evil ones though, belonging to the side of the Cobra, as the soldiers looked too normal, and I was the fan of the Dracula lineage of vampires at that time too. Among the figures that I have, the only ones which I can recognize now are Storm Shadow and Cobra Commander, and as I don’t have the enclosing covers any more, I hope some of you can recognize these people for me.

The second part of my nostalgia goes back further into my childhood. It belongs completely to Hot Wheels, that little collection of cars which I had. Yes, there were others too, but Hot Wheels car completely took over my world with ease. There were not only cars, but also those trucks and buses which were small enough to run all the small paths that I managed to find at random places in my house.

Hot Wheels; they also had the Ads for us kids, right?

Hot Wheels; they also had the Ads for us kids, right?

My favourites were those yellow truck, the blue truck and the yellow car. Forget the other things which form the background to those cars, as they are not part of this nostalgia stuff. I would be glad if you could tell the names of some of the models if you know any. I am looking forward to naming them any way. I have been searching for them in google with random information, but haven’t found success.

Did you have such toys which you still have in possession, or to be found somewhere in a store room of your house or the showcase? May be you can search and find them to bring yourself back to the past, and have some fun with the same along with immersing yourself in nostalgia. If you can find or remember something similar, do share it here. Until then, long live the G.I. Joe and Hot Wheels ๐Ÿ˜€

TeNy

The Virus of Cynicism

It is indeed a universe of chaos, where there are more doubts and uncertainties than the world has ever dreamt of. We live in a world which seems to be governed by the Lord of the Flies and not by any ring, magic wand or a talking lion. In the human world which is intrinsically bad and inherently evil, there is still goodness, and even as I am surprised that there is at least a little bit of the same, there is such an existence, and a more significant thing is that a lot of people believe in the same.

There have been certain incidents which have lead me to feel that may be people can actually trust each other in this world. It is not that people are regularly breaking my trust – I am a cynic, because I have seen so many people going through the selfish path; yes, we all might choose such a road at some point of time, but when we see that so often and as the only path that some people travel through with no chance of even one wrong turn that makes them differ, cynicism takes over.

The humans are grown in a world of chaos, aren't they? (Pic from The Matrix official FB page)

The humans are grown in a world of chaos, aren’t they? (Pic from The Matrix official FB page)

There are a few occasions when I wondered how people can afford to trust others so much in a world where people are judged by their money and achievements. The first one was when a random person who didn’t know Malayalam, English or Hindi trusted me to lead him to the bus station and into the right bus. I traveled with him and made sure that he was going towards the right destination. Sticking to my cynical self, I would have never even thought about asking a stranger, and might go around asking at least three people before getting into a bus, plus I would ask and confirm if he or she is hundred percent sure about it.

The second one was when a random elderly person asked me for help to withdraw his money from an ATM machine. But in my case, I wouldn’t trust any person to be even near me when I am using it. I keep checking my surroundings if there is some possible thief waiting somewhere, and if I can’t withdraw the money, I would just drop all the plans. So, as soon as his job seemed to be done, I rushed out of there without waiting for a thank you, because I was a cynic and will never approve his idea as to trusting the stranger. I was actually afraid that someone else might not do it rightly for him.

Then there is the case of people borrowing books from me, and it is not that much of a different case, as there are people who haven’t given them back to me and hence the case justified. So, when I give them books, nowadays I believe that I won’t get them back, and so if they return them, it is just a bonus. There is no difference in the case of CDs and DVDs. I have wondered which is that point where there comes the part from where we can begin trusting people. Yes, I do trust my good friends, but that trust doesn’t come from nowhere, but rises from situations and after a lot of time.

Only if controlling the idea could be done through dreams (Photo from The Inception FB page)

Only if controlling the idea could be done through dreams (Photo from The Inception FB page)

The same has been the case with me since childhood; when I was a kid studying in around the fourth standard, I gave a friend a video game, and when it was asked back, his mother asked “Why did you give it to him? It is why this has happened”. There marks the beginning of my cynicism. I have still trusted too many people unconditionally in my life, but more incidents have lead to the spreading of this idea about trust like a virus, and it has been growing inside me, not allowing me to trust people in general. I don’t believe that people have good intentions in general, and that idea is something which had a slow growth inside me.

But it has helped me to be more careful and not to expect much from people. If a break of trust happens, I will always be ready for it, and there will be no complaints from my side, and that much I can be sure about. I don’t have much hope or expectations, but I am more than just willing to do my job with sincerity while keeping my expectations low. We should do what we have to, and bad things will happen, but lets go on with what we do. We just can’t make people trustworthy, or be good. It is not within our power. It has helped me to try and be more sincere to others, as the world might not be.

TeNy