Thursday, October 21, 2010

The magic of Harry Potter

          My tryst with Ms Rowling first began in my 7th std when a classmate handed me a copy of “The Goblet of Fire. “ By the time the first chapter was done, I was hooked and that is why I stopped reading it…. I needed to start at the start and work my way through. Finally, when I was in 9th, I could afford to get my very own pirated copy of the books… and I fell in love within the span of an afternoon.

          These were the first series of books that captured my imagination to such an extent after the evergreen Malory Towers. And therein, I believe, lies the Magic of Harry Potter – every single soul who reads the books identifies with one or more characters in the series and most importantly, it offers them an escape from the vagaries of daily life ( come on, even kids have problems )- a whole new world where things are magical, literally ! In fact, this is why adults love the books too, I mean, who doesn’t want to live in a world that is NOTHING like ours and yet has striking parallels to the same?

          Most critics hail the books as one of the ways parents still can convince kids saying “ good will win over evil “ but to me, the books are fascinating because they introduce grey shades to the heroes. That is main reason why fellow fans/friends find so much in common between certain characters and me.

          The genius of Rowling lies in her imagination and how seamlessly she integrates every little thread in the story and weaves an epic that is too beautiful to be put down. There are two kinds of fantasy fans – the LOTR ones and the HP ones. I will admit that I was very disappointed when I first read the LOTR, suddenly Rowling came crashing down from the pedestal I had set her on, there were simply too many similarities between the two to be  written down as just co-incidence.

          But as my thoughts settled down, I began to see the differences and the brilliance in making the ideas simple ( I will NOT say dumbing them down ) enough for kids and soon, I was back to worshipping Rowling. She was much more adept at inspiring imagination, am sure much more people would have SEEN her words than Tolkien, and she left enough loose ends ( just the right amount ) to ensure that even after the books ended, her fans continue to live in her realm. To put it simply, I longed to be a witch, never a hobbit. 

          I could go on and on about how the books, the timelines of their release and storyline has been in sync with my own life, how it has at times seemed to me that she wrote the books just for me, about how I thought there couldn’t be a fan who was more obsessed with her words and to whom they meant more and later found out that every single fan felt the same way – but that would simply make this post read like a diary entry rather than a blog post, so with great difficulty, I will resist that temptation !

          To link back to the opening of this post, am proud to say am a Harry Potter fanatic, that I have spent countless hours bewitched by the magical world, that there have been so many instances where it has healed my wounds and given me happiness, that I have found meaningful friendships that germinated from stupid spell quizzes and character analyses. That Harry Potter has shaped my persona much more than people realise and that it will forever remain a chunk of my identity that no CV or SOP can ever penetrate!

Saturday, July 31, 2010

Raavanan Vs Raamaayanam

This post is dedicated to all those who prompted me to retaliate – contrary to popular criticisms, this was actually a good movie.
Every minute of the movie was aesthetically pleasing but more than that, it was a movie that you couldn’t leave in the theatre and go back home without a thought on your mind. The parallels to the Raamaayanam were absolutely clear and to me, there was no sacrilege. Come on people, she did NOT fall in love with him; there’re emotions like empathy and pity at play here!
The movie only attempted to paint the characters differently… not even different colours, just different lighting perhaps. The questions raised were only an extension of the debates that have been going on for centuries – the world is grey, not black and white.
About the arguments that religious sentiments were hurt and that if it had been some other religion, the Govt. would’ve intervened – Hinduism has weathered much more real threats than a movie that hardly a few lakh people watched. Personally, I am staunchly religious and yet, I find that I’d rather be tolerant like my faith than raise a hue and cry about someone’s interpretation of the characters in an epic. I agree that it is sacred to millions of people but just like our country, our culture too belongs to each one of us – everyone is entitled to their own opinions, let them be !
In every scene, it was made amply clear that the female protagonist was in love with and loyal to her husband. And as with any modern adaptation, the writer and director have only modified the story to fit the age. So I suggest that you watch it as a movie by its own right – if it makes you feel any better, think of it as a very looooose adaptation rather than a re-telling of the story. But if you only want the Raamaayanam, watch Ramanand Sagar, not Mani Ratnam.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

It's been soooo long

Hi all ! Atleast, Hi 2 ppl who read my blog :) It's been soo long since I last posted anything on this blog, not cuz I was busy but cuz I haven't had proper net connectivity. But God willing, I will be a lot more active than I've been in the past ( and the present )... So stay tuned for more updates :) Until then, have fun :D