Notebook movie review

I flipped through Amazon Prime to see if there is anything I would like to  watch. Among the hustle and bustle of mainstream entertainment, I saw this quiet  poster, and the description read that a guy comes as a teacher,and reads the diary of a previous teacher.  Enough to get me hooked.

Notebook hindi movie

Produced by Salman Khan Films, this movie stars debutantes Zaheer Iqbal and Pranutan Bahl.  It is set in the most beautiful places of Kashmir. Ex-army man Kabir(Zaheer ) is summoned by his uncle to become teacher in a school. This school is in the middle of Wuller lake, with no human facilities such as electricity, water and another human. While he  struggles to adjust with the surroundings and the kids – he finds the diary of the teacher who t aught earlier – Firdaus.  Beautifully written, it takes the viewer through Firdaus’s life  seen through the eyes of Kabir.

If you want to experience the beauty of Kashmir, watch the movie. Otherwise ,there are so many flaws in the movie to make it a passable watch. Most notable of them is,  Kabir being so bad in mathematics that his star student fails the exam, as he teaches wrong things. I dont think anyone in their right mind and zero academics would sign up to teach in the middle of a remote lake.  Firdaus is excellent, and it is really disppointing that she would give up on everything she loved and goes  behind the man she was supposed to marry. Except, her fiancee has a fling and now the expectant mother calls for justice on the day of his wedding. There are a lot of threads that do not really add up well.  There are two scenes where the director has excelled  – reason why kabir quits army and  how kabir makes a young boy put down the gun.

The Love story between the lead pair is forced, and no effort is made to establish any chemistry.  Their love story is fuelled by chance, and it didnt leave a good taste for the die hard romantic in me.  The fun part of the movie were kids, who remain cheerful though horrible things keep happening with and around them.

Watch it for the beautiful locales, lovely songs and the kids!

Rating – 6/10

Have a good day and keep rocking!


Meet the Malhotras: Web Series Review

When I saw the trailer of this one on Prime, I was  little intrigued because this is was the first time I saw therapy shown so obviously ingrained in the movie’s plot.  I sat and finished this in two sittings, let’s see how the malhotra’s fared.


With Cyrus Sahukar and Mini Malhotra essaying the Mr. and Mrs. Malhotra, we see them sitting with a Therapist ( Denzel Smith)  for all the 9 sessions. As Denzel smith emphatically asks single word questions and at most, single sentence continuations – we are given a sneak peak into their life – daily situations with their three kids and a household help, who stays permanently with him. Mind you, the kind of house help who takes  turn with  the owner to open the door. They treat him like their  own.

First things first. The cast look fab. Their dressing stylish, hair impeccable and mannerisms modern.  The entire series revolves around their social life, how to manage kids – teenagers and a young brat and an ever intrusive mother in law.  It stays true to the genre – there is not a heavy moment in the entire series. At the same time, where the web series falters is –  You see what’s very familiar for you every day on the screen, and some how cannot get yourself to laugh at the  silliness of the situation. I watched episode after  episode, chasing the elusive laughs it promised me.  However what kept me going, was Mini Malhotra – the innocently charming,  flamboyantly cunning and secretly missing her kids growing up.  The teenage girls and their choice of boy friends, how kids grow up without you noticing them, there are moments of truth but unfortunately, far and between.

You know, I am way too familiar with this feeling where you come back from a show and people ask you, “How was it?” .  You think, pause and try to frame the exact answer. Its there, but it doesnt come out. ” Thik thaak,  one time watch.” You say, and disappear before you get the next question.

That’s the exact feeling I was left with, when I saw this.  It was just thik thaak,  I know something’s missing – but dont know what.  May be, this  is for self obsessed audience who likes to watch themselves on screen again and marvel at their intelligence of leading their lives.  If you are searching for anything at all –  stay away.

Rating –  6/10

Have a good day and keep rocking!!

Kaiwara road trip from Bangalore

Date visited – 25th may 2019

Places visited –

Bheemeshwara temple.
Adinarayana temple.
Kailasagiri cave temple
Thatayya meditation cave

Places we missed –

Bheema bakasura betta
Thatayya samadhi

Breakfast places –

Nanda gokula
Amaravati gardenia in Devanahalli.

Highlights – the cave temple has quite good walk. Go only if you have folks who can walk.

Time in journey – 1.5 hours
Total trip duration – 9 hours.

The bheemeshwara temple of lord shiva was built by bheema. It has 4 other lingas built by other 4 brothers. Adi narayana temple was where lord ram took shelter. Very historically prominent places.

Perfect one day getaway. No rush and no hustle bustle.

Have a good way and keep rocking!

The Books I Read …. :)

I am an avid reader of books, and these days I get increasingly lazy to do a review or record what I read. Goodreads is an old friend, most of my entries go there, but it’s good to see for myself here as well.

Books I’m reading

  1. The Richest Man in Babylon – George S. Clason
  2. The Autobiography of a S** Worker – Nalini Jameela

Books I completed

  1. Where the Rainbow Ends – Anurag Anand
  2. The Golden Tap – The Inside story of Hyper-funded Indian Startups – Kashyap Deorah
  3. The One You Cannot have – Preeti Shenoy
  4. Scandalous Housewives – Madhuri Banerjee
  5. Our Impossible Love – Durjoy Dutta
  6. Serious Men – Manu Joseph
  7. Homo Sapiens – Yuval Noah Harari
  8. Homo Deus – Yuval Noah Harari
  9. Coinman – An untold Conspiracy – Pavan Mishra
  10. Delivering the Digital Economy : How the Telco will survive – Martin Creaner
  11. Who Killed Osho – Abhay Vaidya
  12. The Wellness Sense – Om Swami
  13. 13 Steps to bloody good wealth – Ashwin Sanghi
  14. The Subtle Art of Not Giving a fuck – Mark Manson
  15. Thinner Leaner Stronger – Micheal Matthews
  16. 13 Steps to bloody good health – Ashwin Sanghi
  17. Transforming the Telco – Martin Creaner
  18. Life over Two beers and other stories – Sanjeev Sanyal
  19. You are the best wife – Ajay Pandey
  20. When All is not Well – Om Swami
  21. I am Malala – Malala Yousufzai
  22. Difficulty of being Good – Gurucharan Das
  23. The Power of Habit – Charles Duhigg
  24. The Bad Boys of Bokaro Jail – Chetan Mahajan
  25. Sita’s curse – Sreemoyee Piu Kundu
  26. Asura – Tale of the Vanquished – Anand Neelakanthan
  27. Mahashweta – Sudha Murthy
  28. 59 Seconds . Think a little, change a lot – Richard Wiseman
  29. Breaking Out and Making big – Rudrajeet Desai
  30. A River in Darkness – Masaji Ishikawa
  31. Murder in a minute – Shouvik Bhattacharya
  32. It Started with a friend request – Sudeep Nagarkar
  33. The Vegetarian – Han Kang
  34. White Tiger – Aravind Adiga
  35. Guns, Germs and Steel – Jared Diamond
  36. Tuesdays with Morrie – Mitch Albom
  37. To kill a mocking bird – Lee Harper
  38. The Da Vinci Code – Dan Brown
  39. Made in Japan – Akio Morita
  40. Steve Jobs – Walter Issacson
  41. Lean In – Sheryl Sandberg
  42. Shiva Trilogy – Amish Tripathi
  43. English, August – Upamanyu Chatterjee
  44. I too had a Love story – Ravinder Singh
  45. The Namesake – Jhumpa Lahiri
  46. Animal Farm – George Orwell
  47. 13 Steps to bloody good luck – Ashwin Sanghi
  48. A thousand splendid suns – Khalid Hosseini
  49. And the mountains echoed – Khalid Hosseini
  50. The Test of my life – Yuvraj Singh
  51. Rework – Jason fried
  52. Chanakya’s Chant – Ashwin Sanghi
  53. Losing my religion – Vishwas Mudagal
  54. Meditations – Marcus Aurelius
  55. The 4 Agreements – Miguel Ruiz
  56. The Promise of a Pencil – Adam Brown
  57. The Hard thing about Hard Things – Ben Horowitz
  58. Why I failed – Shweta Punj
  59. The Captainship – Subroto Bagchi
  60. Thank You for Smoking – Christopher Buckley
  61. Arranged Marriage – Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni
  62. Why we Love the way we do – Preeti Shenoy
  63. The Alchemist – Paulo Coehlo
  64. The Company of Women – Khushwant Singh
  65. Eat,Pray,Love – Elizabeth Gilbert
  66. The House that BJ Built – Anuja Chauhan
  67. The old man and the sea – Ernest Hemingway

The Cost of Convenience

I sometimes briefly touch upon this topic in my blog to stress how my life is changed by the things I opt and I don’t.  My last topic on this was having a cook at home and getting used to her tastes, while being not sure of where the extra time was going away.

This time, I am back with another pet peeve – albiet a bit big.  Kid’s badminton academy is shifting far.  She trains thrice a week and its 300 metres  from home. All was well so far. And it’s  shifting to a place that takes atleast 1 hour by  commute to go and come.

We had an urgent parents meeting,  and I found myself there among the 3 parents who attended from the entire parents gang of the academy!  The resident coaches said Big Basket was taking over for the Warehouse and Academy would move. A smile crossed my mind.  And a faint memory of  a story where a group of people from all religions travel and finally who doesn’t raise  his hand to save any religion gets killed, only last.  I did not ask any questions.  Just sat there for a while, contemplating where we are going.

I read The Ken and they had a fantastic article about Big Basket a while ago on how it’s  betting really big on subscription services via BB Daily.  Read it, ignore it.  Then not long – I saw a kiosk by BB Daily guys in the apartment. Their deals were tooo good to ignore and no minimum order for a subscription on any given day. Check the night before, and viola – it’s delivered to your door step the next day between 5 and 7:30 am.  Was I thrilled? Not really, because I tend to go out everyday for one reason or the other and  I was really fine not getting delivered anything last minute.  Yes, once or twice I ordered stuff only to use up the balance sitting in the wallet.  But, I see bbdaily baskets all through the apartment and can make a guess that atleast 10-15 homes might be ordering from him everyday morning. So,  ofcourse he needs a warehouse closer. What better than a spacious badminton academy in the middle of hustle and bustle?  It’s stone’s throw away from Bhartiya City, Sobha City, Vajram, R R and many more upcoming high rise apartments. Who’s paying the cost?  May be not the guys ordering stuff home – but kids who now have to travel far for the same training at the same academy.

There is no such thing as free lunch.

Just that, the question is who is paying the price?  If not one way, other way – every one of us must pay the price for the  conveniences we think we need.