Waiting More For Movies

As Corona Virus has continued to keep us in the lock-down, there is not much happening around here. I have been coming up with some foreign movie reviews including Korean, Spanish, French, Japanese, Italian, Polish, Portuguese, Latin and Chinese, and you can look at them if you want. You can check the review of The Divine Fury with which the process began, going through First Love, and more movies which are to follow. Limiting the reviews to just one or two languages was not going to be the right thing to do, as I wanted to explore the flicks in other languages from other nations further. The result has been the increase in the frequency of film reviews, which was rather expected during the time of lock-down. After all, this is a situation which none of us had expected, and clearly, nobody was prepared for it. We are all locked into ourselves these days.

It is to be noted that in the last year and the year before that, April-May season was a time of foreign trips. We had one to Indonesia‘s Bali last year, and to Thailand’s Pattaya and Bangkok before that. It makes one wonder about how much the world has changed so quickly. Kerala has had its own problems in the last two years with the floods coming through, and the year before that, there was the Cyclone Ockhi. Well, the world doesn’t seem to be anywhere close to being the one we knew before, as we look at what has happened in those nations which reported the most cases, United States of America, Russia, Germany, Spain, Italy, France, United Kingdom, Brazil, Iran and Turkey registering over one lakh cases – are we safe anymore? Will everything return to normal on any day? We ponder over that, and also look at what I look forward to, if the cinema theatres open any time soon.

1. Kunjeldho: Starring Asif Ali after the much appreciated Kettyolaanu Ente Malakha and the cute newcomer Gopika Udayan, this movie seems to have all that is needed for a campus movie. It began with a beautiful song from the plus two days which has us immersed in it, and then it has one of the most beautiful green campuses you might ever know. The movie seems to have been mostly shot in UC College campus, Aluva, the exact place where the middle part of the movie Premam was shot, as Nivin Pauly was the student in the college, finding his love in the inappropriate places. But it has to be noted that the movie had failed to capture the beauty of the college in the best possible manner, as UCC was always more than that. But when it was there, they could manage to do justice to the central area. Uyare also had a little bit of the college when Parvathy was dancing and talking later.

Kunjeldho can do much more, or rather a lot more than what has been done so far in the college campus. Premam could never absorb the spirit of the college, and as we look into the glimpse of Kunjeldho, it might have done that with clarity. This movie is directed by RJ Mathukkutty, different from the director of Helen, even though the names can have you confused. It seems that he has captured the campus life as it is, with its feel-good factor and happiness rather than those negative factors which often get the focus. He is someone who did study BA Malayalam from the same college, and that also adds to the understanding of the spirit and soul of the college. The feeling has to be different when you are shooting a movie at the place where you studied at college level, and it is up to him to bring full justice to the location this time.

It is to be noted that the plus two moments of the movie were also shot in a famous Jayakeralam school, this time near Perumbavoor, another town near the town of Aluva where UC College is located. This proximity makes one have the realistic factor closer than ever, within a distance of twenty something kilometres – this increase in distance is due to the fact that the college is located about three kilometres from Aluva town centre on the road to Paravoor, and the school is located about four kilometres from Perumbavoor town centre, on the road to Muvattupuzha. I had also seen the shooting progressing at Jayakeralam, and when things get close to reality, and what you know, you feel it to be part of your life, lile Kunjeldho can do. But we have to wait and see how much of that is seen on the big screen when it releases.

2. The Priest: The first collaboration of Mammootty and Manju Warrier in their long careers is here in the form of this movie, which reminds one of the 2011 movie with the same name, which had priests as elite warriors against vampires, sent by the church. When we look back, that was quite a strange movie, and here, we have a horror mystery with Mammootty in the lead, and playing a priest. We were eagerly waiting for it, and it became another film which was postponed due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. These are not the best times for a movie lover, as he can no longer watch movies in the theatres, and as he keeps reviewing those older movies, not many people want to support him by reading those opinions, as they are not about movies which are at the theatres where people wish to visit with the family.

3. Meppadiyan: There has always been something about this movie. It is a crime thriller with Unni Mukundan in the lead, and it was always going to be good, as he has been into crime on the big screen in Mikhael, even though that was just a shadow – we know what he is capable of playing a man into crime. This movie could bring him back to his original form, as he hasn’t had many movies these days, and none to test his caliber at all. Let us hope that this is the one movie which does trick in style. Among those other movies which people keep waiting for, like Marakkar: Arabikadalinte Simham, something which is supposed to be the grand film like Mamangam – you know what expectations can do to you, as proven by that Mammootty movie, and much earlier with the Mohanlal starrer, Odiyan. Let us hope, and not think about this one too much, as the risk factor is certainly there.

***All the images used on this blog post were taken from the official Facebook pages of the movies and the actors or actresses performing in them.

TeNy

UCC: All that is Fantastico

I have watched many movies which are based on campus life, including Classmates, Niram, Doctor Love, Nammal and more, but never did I thought that my post graduation time will be the best years of my life. Yes, there has been problems here are there, but all of them have only contributed to making me a better person, and there was the chance to go through all the literature, which is why I consider the two years as among the best of life, and remain as my strongest memories; UCC is the fantastico of my education.

This memory is all about UC College or Union Christian College. The history of UC College’s history goes back to 1921, when it came to existence as a result of co-operation between four major church denominations in Kerala, the Church of South India, the Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church, the Mar Thoma Syrian Church, and the Malankara Jacobite Syrian Church. Earlier affiliated to The Travancore University and now affiliated to the Mahatma Gandhi University at Kottayam, UC is a very much reputed college.

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UC College has been one of the few things which continues to represent the town of Aluva, along with the Marthanda Varma Bridge, the Federal Bank HO, the Shivarathri Manappuram, the Advaita Ashram and Mangalapuzha Seminary. Located about four to five kilometres from the main town area, UC College is one the best known education institutions in Kerala, and among the colleges in Ernakulam district close enough to Cochin, it has been traditionally the most popular.

The college was also like three and half kilometres from my home at that time, a distance which I could reduce by a few metres if I had chosen to walk by taking a few shortcuts through a world without traffic. So, UC College was always going to be the right choice for me to go for MA English. So, the fact that I could get admission there on merit itself was more than just another happy moment for me. But I wasn’t sure about my future even then, and I could never be clear about what was to happen there, being the big cynic.

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But the college which you have seen in the movie Premam was not just another educational institution for me. UC College has been the source of nostalgia, something that still stays, unlike the rest of the insitutions – in the case of all the others, the memories have clearly disappeared. From the canteen to the library, and through each building there, stretching around the green campus which has so many trees and old structures, each corner of the college is still alive in my mind. It feels so good to reach the campus early morning, and walk through this green universe. There is the need to arrive early and leave late considering how refreshing the campus is.

The days were fantastic, even though I understood that they were so when it was coming to a finish. I didn’t feel that it was going to be this good when I began, but things only got better. As the second year started, life had become so much closer to literature, and Film Studies was also a paper waiting to come to light. The whole department had become even more friendly, and even getting permission to go to the canteen and have a cup of tea was so easy. I could never study at an institution which had friendly teachers earlier, but UC College was an exception. Most of the school teachers have been demons for me as I remember.

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The advantage of having friendly teachers is that you will have a better interest in the subjects which they are teaching, and you never hesitate to ask the questions. Throughout my studies, until joining UC College, I had only one or two of such friendly teachers, but thankfully that changed with the MA English adventure. I remember the opportunities to attend the seminars at different colleges and the chance to be part of many quiz programmes in Central Kerala along with winning a few! One of those wins are still shown there on the official website of the college, and that still feels happy and extra fantastico! 😀 You can see it here

***The images used in this blog post were taken by me during my MA English course there.

This blog post is inspired by the blogging marathon hosted on IndiBlogger for the launch of the #Fantastico Zica from Tata Motors. You can apply for a test drive of the hatchback Zica today.

TeNy

UCC: Random Thoughts

It has been two years. Time has moved fast, and I still remain where I was by the end of July 2013. I was going through the final stages of my project on vampire as a cultural construct at that time, and after two years, the vampires remain, or rather the ghosts of the vampires, and the new ones have also joined my imaginations. After two years, nothing really has happened with my life except for the fact that the distance has increased considerably; distance not just to one thing, but to many.

I am away from my college, the students and teachers, further than ever. We have moved from Aluva to the present location, which means myself and the college no longer shares the same town. Even after leaving Union Christian College, I used to wander around the place, having tea at the nearby restaurants and bakeries. I was close enough, and I had a few visits after I left officially. There were a few friends visited and the teachers were also there. The distance from my home to college remained three kilometres at that time.

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Now, it has all changed though. With the distance, the world itself has broken away into two, one from the past and the other of the present which is a void. My only hope remains that my former classmates will call me for their weddings. I do suspect that some of the girls might be already married and I never knew. I hope that the food at those functions was not that good; otherwise I will be very disappointed. Well, I guess that I was pretty much expendable and the time had arrived to use that particular characteristic – I feel that now.

Everyone has evolved into something else, and there are no assignments, seminars or projects to talk about or to be of help. So, there is more chance of my mobile number being scrapped, and someone can always say that it was the mobile which was lost or changed. They are more practical and I am a wanderer in the thoughts which won’t have any significance for a normal person these days. May be I can use that “former intellectual” tag and use it on my name plate, hanging it on the gate of my house as a memory.

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UC College has surely made me a better person, and I have talked about it on my earlier post. But the depressing thing was that it was too short a period of time for me. There were also enough strikes to make it even shorter. I feel it even more after watching the college in the movie Premam. But I would still not doubt the fact that it was the right time for me to study there. I did feel that the forces present there at that time were custom made for me, including the students and the faculty.

When you feel that a place has made you a better person, and now you have no connection with the same, it should feel terrible, or at least for me, it does. I know that as we consider the expected model of the college days, mine wouldn’t count as interesting. It is not worthy of being an entertaining collection of two years for humanity. I haven’t had a huge friend circle, and without those quiz programs, I would have been mostly unknown in my department too. But I was glad with what I had, and the books.

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I enjoyed watching the rain which made the college which is close to nature even more beautiful, joining my favourite lecturers for a cup of tea or having onion vada with one of those faces which I knew. I loved to go to the library and collect those vampire-related works, and I loved where I parked my car. I won’t say that it was about having fun, and for the same reason, it was closer to my heart. I have enjoyed loneliness with a book under the tree and keeping on ordering for more tea at the canteen while working on my vampire thesis. And now there is no connection. My previous post, The College Days at UCC which was a contest winner, had a more optimistic side, but it has been some time!

***The photos were taken by me at UC College; there are no surprises there.

TeNy

Surf it All! Surf it Fast!

I have used a number of internet browsers throughout my long computerized life, and among them, UC Browser has had a special place in the last few years. I have to admit that I didn’t realize that it was available for PC, but my android phones always had that installed. As I am waiting to download UC Browser 5.2 for PC, I can’t help thinking how much I used it on my android phone. I have actually kept many browsers on my phone, but UC Browser has indeed turned out to be the fastest there.

It is part of UCWeb Inc. based in China. It is now available on the platforms Android, iOS, Windows Phone, Symbian, Java ME and BlackBerry with a new version of the Personal Computer. With more than 500 million global users, its majority of users are in India and China. It is for further grasp on the ever evolving Indian marked that UC Browser has added something which will work like a dream in the Indian subcontinent – something related to the most popular game in India.

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A talk about this browser is never complete without adding something about cricket, because UC Cricket is big part of the same. When we open the UC Browser home screen, there is the – UC Cricket there with a blue icon. Currently it shows as T20 2015, but I believe it changes according to the matches. UC Browser provides some nice cricket service in our cricket crazy nation including the latest news related to the game along the live scores, and they are just one click away. It means that if we wish to check the score, there is no need to search on Google anymore.

The cricket fans are going to love this, as they can once again cherish one of those few things which are common among the people rising above that diversity. All the different cultures, customs, traditions, food habits, languages, religions, castes and ethnicities are expected to come together with the sports, and as it is now, it is cricket which unites people in a good way or the bad way. As cricket becomes that common factor among all kinds of people, UC Browser clearly scores here, and scores big, just like Chris Gayle going on an unstoppable assault.

When you click on the icon, it goes to a special page where things are a lot easier. No, it is not like going to the Cricinfo website as this is quite simple and without trouble. You can see the live scores which can be clicked for details, and there are also the options for checking the recently concluded matches as well as the fixtures of the upcoming cricket games. You can also choose between the international, domestic or both types of matches to display for your convenience. The news is right below followed by the special articles which come right after it.

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There is a lot of cricket right there, and it doesn’t end, as the videos and photos follow to provide a lot more of cricket. It is like going to Cricinfo, but in an easier and simpler way, and it will be what we need considering the limitations that the networks have and also the existence of the need to have a quick look at the score. We Indians can’t afford a slower or less efficient display of scores, can we? Well, Indian cricket itself can’t afford to go weak with the curse of match-fixing, corruption and terrible losses to Bangladesh wandering over the heads of the players.

UC Browser will bring cricket and make us attached to UC Cricket which means that cricket will have more people looking for the scores.The other quick links are also there, including BookMyShow, Quikr, OLX, Amazon, Paytm, Facebook, Snapdeal etc. There are also separate icons for shopping, sports, downloads, and other fun and entertainment along with the most visited button which makes things much easier. There is no stopping UC Browser is making things better while browsing online, that is for sure.

Spend some time and data to download UC Browser @ http://www.ucweb.com/ and check UC Cricket http://www.ucweb.com/English/UCbrowser/cricket.html

***I have a special love for UC Browser as it is the name of the college where I studied, UC College – yes, it is also the college shown in the super-hit Nivin Pauly movie, Premam.

**The images used in this blog post are from the Official Facebook Page of UC Browser, and are meant to support this post only.

TeNy

A Big Change to Life

There is always the need for a bold step which ends up changing our lives for the good or the bad. It is often powered by fate or by ourselves. Almost everyone should have such an incident which changes one’s life in such a big way that the later years become defined by that moment. For a good, well-thought decision, the decision can rarely be negative, and it can do wonders to our lives. Here is a story of my life that I share here: #StartANewLife.

It happened when I was submitting the application for MA English at Union Christian College, Aluva. Almost everyone I know told me that it was impossible to get an admission at that college for someone like me with very less number of seats left after all the reservation procedure and the quota ends. It was like making an effort which was not going to bear any fruit. It was going to be a useless procedure to apply directly through the website.

The other option was provided by the same people. It was to look for the management seat as the only right and possible option in their eyes. People said that it is near impossible, but I had hope, with the feeling that I can get admission by myself. I haven’t had much of an opinion about myself at that time and neither did most of the people around me. I thought that may be this could be a first, to change that opinion, because the change had to start somewhere.

I was provided many options with possible recommendations by many people. But I decided to move on with the direct path, the Centralized Allotment Procedure. I hoped that I could move out of those large number of tags by joining the course in this particular college by merit. UC College still remains one of the most prestigious and the most well-known colleges in Kerala, and it was also close to my home.

Then, on that day when I felt more respect to Mahathma Gandhi University that any other day, there was the trial allotment displayed, and with the choice of course and college given, I understood that there was a big chance of getting admission in any of the colleges in my district, as for admission to MA English, the score for the English languages was added extra along with the total score. UC College was there for me join.

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That was a twist, and it happened after I took the decision to go for the direct admission rather than just the management seat. Yes, there were discussions, and there was the idea that a regular seat was impossible, but I stuck to the usual procedure and tried directly despite people telling me not to. Most of the people didn’t believe that I actually got the admission on merit, for some time.

With the successful admission on merit, I was able to leave my past behind. I understood that I was good enough, and my decision to choose English over the other subjects was working well. I had a very good time at the college, managed to win inter-college competitions, scored well for seminars, did assignments nicely and finished with good marks in the final exams. This could still have happened even if I had joined in the management quota, but not with this much confidence and smoothness, that is for sure. All of these were made possible because I could take the step to choose direct entry, and I am glad that it happened in the best way.

Housing.com also loves changes, a good change, moving forward: https://housing.com/

***The image used in this blog post is from Housing.com home page. You have just read about my memory on the idea – #StartANewLife.

TeNy