The Week
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Film: O Kadhal KanmaniLanguage: TamilDirector: Mani RatnamCast: Dulquer Salman, Nithya Menen, Prakash Raj, Leela SamsonRating: 2/5At Mani Ratnam's latest film O Kadhal Kanmani's music launch, his wife and acclaimed actor-director Suhasini Ratnam said that only qualified critics should review the film. Despite Mrs Ratnam's tall claims and an apparent talent overload in the crew, it is...
Mango mystique
The year was 1978. Nawab Jafar Mir Abdullah of the royal family of Lucknow was entertaining a few British guests at his palace when one of them made an unusual request. He told the nawab that another guest, a nurse from Morocco, had never plucked a mango from a tree and wished to do so.Lucknow prides itself for its mangoes, but 1978 was a bad year. The mango crop had failed badly. The nawab,...
Greener pastures
Vegetarians the world over have never had it so good. Gone are the days when salad stuffings, breads and sliced potatoes gaped out of a vegetarian’s plate while his carnivorous friends revelled in a hearty three-course meal. A culinary renaissance, which has inspired celebrities like Aamir Khan, Russell Brand and Mike Tyson to go green, has also inspired internationally acclaimed chefs to...
A tale of six yards
It began as a spontaneous banter between two friends in Bengaluru. But in no time, it turned into a culture revival movement, pleating in several women across continents. Ahalya (Ally) Matthan, a perfumer, and Anju Maudgal Kadam, a communications consultant, decided over a random phone conversation earlier this year to show their saris "more love" by wearing them at least 100 times in...
Petrichor, the summer scent
The summer rains are here, “…mixing memory and desire, stirring dull roots….” And, an old noun is back in the news thanks to an Indian connection. Petrichor, the smell of rain in the air. The word is a portmanteau of two Greek words: petra (stone) and ichor (blood of the gods).Petrichor was coined by Isabel Bear and Richard Thomas, scientists at CSIRO, Australia’s...
The butterfly superhighway
Enthusiasts track the annual migration of Albatross butterflies in Kerala. Lack of official support does not deter them
Non-perishable notion
If you call the Copenhagen restaurant Rub & Stub to reserve a table, you might hear some unusual things. “In principle, with pleasure,” founder Sophie Sales might say, “but we might not be able to serve you dinner.” Luckily, it doesn't happen often, but it is possible that the restaurant can't round up enough staff for the evening. “Then we can't...
Toast to the tee
As a teenager, he left behind the comforts of his home in Secunderabad, and shifted to a small house near the Eagleton Golf Course, about 30km from Bengaluru. At sunrise, he would cook and pack his tiffin, leave for the golf course. He would return home after sunset, and sit on the terrace with his earphones on. “Listening to music, he would stare at the stars and dream,” says his...
Nature's signature
Akshay Lall's journey to the world of wildlife photography began four years ago, when he joined 20 other enthusiasts on a trip to Bandhavgarh National Park in Madhya Pradesh. He did not have a great camera or even a confirmed train ticket as he started from Delhi. But that trip changed the 13-year-old boy's life forever. "Wildlife photography is extremely tedious, full of hardships,...
Old wine, old bottle
Fast and Furious 7 may have grossed Rs 70 crore in India but there is nothing in it that we haven’t seen already in Bollywood
John Lennon's first wife Cynthia dies at 75
Cynthia Lennon, first wife of late Beatle John Lennon, has died, her family said on Wednesday. She was 75."Cynthia Lennon passed away today at her home in Mallorca, Spain, following a short but brave battle with cancer," according to a statement on her son Julian's website."Her son Julian Lennon was at her bedside throughout. The family are thankful for your prayers," it...
Gods must be stingy
It is an unusually hot day. At the Poluppil Bhagavati temple in Kadavankodu near Kannur, Kerala, a theyyam moves to frenzied drum beat. Through his 20-foot-high headdress, a concoction of cloth and wood, the glowing orb of the sun pirouettes and belly flops, as though it, too, has caught a touch of the noonday madness. As the dust settles and the last of the beats dies down, the petitioners start...
French evolution
It is a busy day for chef Gunjit Chawla. In the cold kitchen section of The Oberoi in New Delhi, Chawla pulls out a pair of rubber gloves from a box and sets to work. He puts together a prawn cocktail with cognac infusion, a classic French appetiser salad. “Delicacy and detailing or presentation is one of the most important aspects of French food. The French believe in eating with their...
Arvind Word Power
Arvind Word Power: English-Hindi- A Dictionary With a Difference-The tussle between English and Hindi¯both official languages of India¯has been going on for quite some time. Both languages have passionate supporters, who extol the virtues of their choice and argue why it should be accorded precedence. However, as tools of communications have shrunk the world into a village, mastering...
Home trumps expectations with $54 million debut
Jeffrey Katzenberg must be breathing a huge sigh of relief after the embattled DreamWorks Animation chief scored a much needed box office win with the release of Home.The family film was the weekend’s top ticket seller, pulling in a sterling $54 million, easily eclipsing projections that had it bowing to between $30 million and $35 million. It’s one of the studio’s best-ever...
Telly dose of superheroes
Anjum Sharma grew up on a steady feed of superhero content. He-Man was his favourite character, and like most children he dreamt of possessing superhuman powers one day. Most summer afternoons were spent playing 'the master of the universe' with friends and cousins, turning the pet dog into Battle Cat (He-Man’s ride, a tiger) and wielding an umbrella as the power sword. Two decades...
Queen's reign
Small town girl goes to big, bad city. In the pursuit of her dreams, she falls into bad company and makes a few mistakes. But finally she comes out of it as an independent, strong and successful woman. Add to this storyline a few songs and dances, and it would make for a mushy Bollywood film, right? This is pretty much the life story of actor Kangna Ranaut, who was adjudged the best actress in...
'Big Hero 6', highest grossing animated movie
Los Angeles: Oscar-winning movie "Big Hero 6" has been named as the highest grossing animated movie of 2014, taking in $620 million globally.The film earned a total of $221 million in the US, making it Walt Disney Animation Studios' third biggest domestic release of all time, reports by Don Hall and Chris Williams, the film's worldwide total has...
Revival instinct
Theatre in Hyderabad is thriving, thanks to the efforts of Mohammad Ali Baig and his foundation that is completing ten years
Amitav Ghosh among 10 finalists for Booker prize
London: Amitav Ghosh on Tuesday emerged as the only Indian author among 10 finalists for this year's Man Booker International Prize for his contribution to the English language writing. Kolkata born, 58-year-old Ghosh had narrowly missed out on the Booker Prize back in 2008 when he was shortlisted for his work 'Sea of Poppies'. The international version of the popular literary prize,...
Coming soon...
'Boyhood' wins top honours, 'The Lunchbox' misses award
Going global
For artist K.M. Madhusudhanan of Kerala, the Kochi-Muziris biennale turned out to be a stepping stone for something bigger—the Venice biennale 2015. Madhusudhanan's work caught the eye of Nigerian curator Okwui Enwazor, who visited the Kochi biennale in December. So impressed was he with the work that he invited Madhusudhanan to showcase it at the Venice biennale, one of the most...
The sound of silence
Off the beaten path
Nine Censor Board members resign
Musician Bombay S. Kamal dead
Bombay S. Kamal, a Hindustani and ghazal singer who also composed music for 13 Malayalam films, died at a private hospital here, his family said on Tuesday. He was 82.The last rites of the musician will be held here at a mosque in the evening. He is survived by his wife and three children.Even though he was born in Mumbai, Kamal was invited to Kerala in the late 1950s by the then well known...
Bollywood, young India defend 'PK', protests continue
Indians out of the race for 87th Academy Awards
'Haider' shines in healthy mix of Hindi, regional cinema
New Delhi: The jury of the 62nd National Film Awards announced a balanced list of winners from the Hindi and regional movie worlds, with Vishal Bhardwaj’s “Haider” taking away a bouquet of five awards. Talents from Tamil and Bengali movies have been rightfully lauded, too.“Haider”—a modern-day adaptation of William Shakespeare’s classic tragedy...
Songs of refuge
Terry Pratchett, author of fantasy novels, dies at 66
Terry Pratchett, the British author whose fantasy novels sold in their tens of millions worldwide, has died of a rare form of Alzheimer's disease aged 66, his publisher said on Thursday.News about the death of Pratchett—who campaigned during his final illness for legalising assisted death—came on his Twitter account in a series of tweets written in the style of his Discworld...
Actor Shashi Kapoor to get Dadasaheb Phalke Award
Veteran actor Shashi Kapoor will receive the Dadasaheb Phalke Award for 2014, the government announced on Monday, becoming the third in his family to receive the country’s highest honour in Indian cinema.Kapoor, 77, is known for his myriad roles in both mainstream and experimental cinema in India and in several international projects, most notably for his collaboration with Ismail Merchant...
Messenger of mayhem
With no malice
Hardly had we dried our tears over the demise of George Verghese when we faced another tragedy—the death of Vinod Mehta, a distinguished journalist. Both belonged to an era when the printed word had not only meaning but also message.Vinod and I were friends for more than four decades. The first time when I met him, he was editor of Debonair, a magazine printed from Bombay. I was amazed how...
Time warp
A nine-hour-long play captures the imagination of theatre-goers for its attention to detail and characterisation
An Expert's Guide to Your Right First Job
An Expert's Guide to Your Right First JobBy T. Muralidharan Published by Rupa Publications India Price Rs150; pages 153 An Expert's Guide to Your Right First Job is all about cracking the corporate code. The key to the code lies in landing the right first job, and the book tells you how. T. Muralidharan, chairman of TMI Group, a recruiting firm, gives an insider's view and a...
More Inside THE WEEK
Not at home
Failed plan
Vipassana connection
Guest column: Sangakkara
Soft yet tough
chef's choice  |  Hemant Oberoi
Lure of the greens
Forty per cent of the population in India is vegetarian. Is it by choice, religion or compulsion? It would take days and weeks to debate it. All Gujarati Hindus and Brahmins are expected not to eat meat or poultry, ...  »
freewheeling  |  Derek O'Brien
Bullying the houses
After President Pranab Mukherjee, it is now Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan who has cautioned against the repeated and knee-jerk use of ordinances. Speaking at a conference in Lucknow, she said, “Ordinances ...  »