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Avatar

December 18, 2009 3 comments

and finally a 3D movie in bangalore.. totally worth the wait… No wonder the multi-plexes have been forced to accommodate this movie. I am sure that the low profile that Cameron kept after Titanic was on some level related to the very feeling you get once you do something immensely spectacular –  The next should be something spectacular-er ! He has rightfully claimed this –er with Avatar.

I will begin with the thing that expectedly will prove to be the USP of the movie.. the graphics.. !.. Cameron waited more than a decade for the technology to mature, and has delivered a masterpiece. The new virtual camera system has been combined spectacularly with such gargantuan imagination and beautiful colors. The characters were supremely real, full of beauty and innocence. To be frank, I was moved more by the scenes rather than the 3D effect. It wears on after a while. The apparent neutral reaction might also be due to the fact that I missed the starting 30 minutes of the movie, because people were more interested in the hooting at the 3D effects rather than listening to any of the dialogs. More on the harping later :).

On a serious note, this movie should pave way for a new genre of movies. “Avatar” has presented characters designed on the computer, but played by human actors. The bodies were filmed using the latest evolution of motion-capture technology — markers placed on the actor and tracked by a camera — while the facial expressions were tracked by tiny cameras on headsets that recorded their performances to insert them into a virtual world. An important innovation is the camera developed by Cameron’s team. It helps to observe the performances of the actors-as-aliens, in the film’s virtual environment, as it happens. The technology is extremely scalable and evidently, very effective.

The story line has again picked up on one of the most pertinent questions of contemporary times. It focuses on how the sky-walkers (read – humans) have been destroying their (in this movie other’s) mother nature. Cameron has made his point by not only incorporating the emotions involved, but by subtly referring to how much we have not understood yet, and how much we will never understand if this continues (which I personally think will continue). The movie touches various other movies at different times. It reminds you of matrix (the interconnection albeit in a non-technical way), Lord of the rings (primarily because of the landscapes), The Celestine Prophecy(the universal energy that encompasses everything) and not to forget the recurring theme of how the earth is nearing a doom.

“Avatar” receives two-thumbs up. You need to watch it even if just for the sake of the experience.

FYI.. cameron is planing a trilogy 🙂

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Categories: Music and Movies

Michael Moore yet again

October 24, 2009 Leave a comment

Saw Capitalism: A love story recently.. yet another documentary from the self-proclaimed ‘liberal’ and famous documentary film-maker Michael Moore. The documentary focuses on the transition between the two governments with the recent financial massacre being the backdrop.  Moore pitches for an active public involvement and rests the success of Obama more on what people will do to support him. The timing, just as Fahrenheit 9/11, is pretty impeccable with Obama steadily setting his feet down.

For me, it all started with Bowling for Columbine. We were shown this movie as a part of “Science and humanism” course back at IIT. The movie, though not spectacular did introduce me to Moore. I liked his direction.. raw and very straight-forward in conveying what he wants to even if most of it is fabricated.  Then followed Fahrenheit 9/11 and Sicko both of which are spectacular movies.

Coming back to Capitalism: A love story, I personally found the movie a bit less focussed than Sicko or Bowling for Columbine. Maybe because the subject was  a bit abstract but it was fun and might invite some sharp criticism its way. The fact that of all the firms, Moore chose Goldman Sachs to rip apart, inspite of the fact that they are one of the very few firms who have actually paid-back the bailout money(Here), surely won’t go down well with the critics.

I must admit though, that in the earlier movies, many things might have been setup and tweaked to fit in the context. Fahrenheit 9/11  had a substantial part specially emphasizing how politicians and leaders send their kin-members to the war.. and you do not have to be a rocket-scientist to see the statistical fallacy in the claim. The recent years have seen the emergence of a relatively small cottage industry: filmmakers looking to take on the 55-year-old Mr. Moore at his own game. This is one of the many articles echoing their sentiments.

Anyways, no one kicks a dead dog, and though invariably pregnant with controversial claims and fallacies, I believe Moore does infact brings to forefront the most pertinent questions, albeit in a cruel way !

Waiting eagerly for some detailed reviews about Capitalism: A Love Story !

Violin

October 21, 2009 Leave a comment

And so begins a new story…

After a month long effort, I have finally brought home my Violin :)… I love the voice, even though I make it sound like a terribly pissed off frog !

Its a GB&A Violin.. Series 101 !

221-Violin

Sides and Back: Maple
Pegs and FingerBoard: Ebony
Tailpiece: Metal with adjustors
Bow: Octagon with horse hair
Case: Oblong
Finish: Gloss & Matt/Brown

On  a side note, just had a brief stint with Guitar as well..started with Smoke on the water and Nothing else matters ! Just a start but nothing less than total ecstasy for me.

Categories: Music and Movies