Category Archives: Cinema

The glory days when single-hall cinemas declared “House Full”

By Sushmita Bose

Last week, I went for a movie to the theatre, and realised it was “house full”: every single ticket was sold out. In this empowered age of technology, I’d purchased my virtual tickets on the Vox app, where you can see exactly how many seats are “available”, and can choose your seats at the click of a button; you don’t even need paper tickets any more since you only have to airily wave a barcode in front of some machine in order to waltz right in. But it was nice to see that people were actually taking time out to visit the movie theatre instead of streaming pirated prints on deadbeat television sets and feeding off them like zombies.

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Yes, Priyanka Chopra is 11 years older than Nick Jonas. So?

By Sushmita Bose

Straight off the bat, I’m really annoyed at the mindless jokes doing the rounds on Priyanka Chopra’s engagement to Nick Jonas. As you must have been informed, over and over again, with not one single media report eschewing the brandishing of numbers, she’s 36 and he’s 25 — and that’s evidently enough to trigger a barrage of concocted humour. There was one pictorial forward headlined: ‘Indian celebrities who have adopted kids’, with a photo gallery of Sushmita Sen and Raveena Tandon with their two girls (apiece), and then a photo of PC with NJ. One other claimed that when Nick was an “innocent” 8-year-old, PC was already (a grown-up) Miss World. A lot of members in a WhatsApp college group were tittering over one that said (roughly): “When we were young, pretty actresses were marrying older men… now that we are older, pretty actresses are marrying young men — how unfair is that?”

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How to take down abusers in a film industry

By Allan Jacob

Let’s talk after 10pm, she tells me. Not tonight, maybe tomorrow, I say. The 11am slot I am granted the next morning is not working out — it’s rushed, I feel. So, I call her past 3pm, and she states that I am late, yet consents to speak in 15 minutes after she’s done with an interview. She sounds like a celebrity living the life while setting a scorching pace — the shift from actor to star activist has come at a price. Finally, I get through and her voice is confident, her candour setting the tone for an engaging conversation. She seems to have found new meaning in life, a reason to live and continue the fight for a cause she believes in. And the gloves are clearly off.

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DIFF maps the cultural crossroads at 14

By Anamika Chatterjee

In the UAE’s cultural calendar, December is no ordinary month — it’s the time when the region celebrates cinema — in all its forms, in all its glory. In its 14th year now, the Dubai International Film Festival (DIFF), which kickstarted this week, has been consistently showcasing some of the finest films from all over the world, besides offering a robust platform to Arab cinema. Raising the bar consistently is not easy. It requires a happy marriage of creative fulfilment with commercial ambition. A reason why Shivani Pandya’s job as the managing director of DIFF is as challenging as it is exciting.

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What history has to do with Padmavati being real, or not

By Anamika Chatterjee

Histories are written by the powerful, but memories are owned by the powerless as well. That might explain why a 14th century Rajput queen has made her way to our primetime debates. Today, Rani Padmavati — she of unparalleled beauty, devotion and valour — exists somewhere between this tussle between history and memory.

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