dangermousie: (Default)
1. I've been reading my way through Ashok K. Banker series of novels which are a retelling of the Ramayana in novel form. From what I remember (I read a Russian translation of the Ramayana ages ago), he is pretty faithful to the original, with the advantages that come with the novel form (dialogue, filling in the gaps) but if you are looking for an interpretation or reimagining of the original, you are better off looking elsewhere. Its faithfulness is also its straight-jacket. If, otoh, you want a rip-roaring good story (there is a reason I adored the original in translation as a child) written in a more accessible language and with more detail than a pure English translation of the original epic will be, come right in.

2. This is, for some reason, is reminding me of my love for Persian poetry. Translations were pretty obtainable in the Soviet Union when I was growing up. They are just so emotional and passionate and beautiful. The closest equivalent in English would be the metaphysical poets, IMO. I especially love Saadi. My favorite Persian poem is his. It's only four lines but it really gets me, somehow. Here it is, in Russian translation:

Если в рай после смерти меня поведут без тебя,
Я закрою глаза, чтобы светлого рая не видеть.
Ведь в раю без тебя мне придется сгорать, как в аду.
Нет, аллах не захочет меня так жестоко обидеть!

Also, his gazals are amazing. Here is one (in Russian translation)

О караванщик, сдержи верблюдов! Покой мой сладкий, мой сон уходит.
Вот это сердце за той, что скрутит любое сердце, в полон уходит.
Уходит злая, кого люблю я, мне оставляя одно пыланье.
И полыхаю я, словно пламень, и к тучам в дымах мой стон уходит.
Я о строптивой все помнить буду, покуда буду владеть я речью.
Хоть слово – вестник ее неверный, едва придет он и вон уходит.
Приди, – и снова тебе, прекрасной, тебе, всевластной, служить я стану.
Ведь крик мой страстный в просторы неба, себе не зная препон, уходит.
О том, как души бросают смертных, об этом люди толкуют разно.
Я ж видел душу свою воочью: она – о, горький урон! – уходит.
Не должен стоном стонать Саади,— но все ж неверной кричу я: “Злая!”
Найду ль терпенье! Ведь из рассудка благоразумья канон уходит!

If you want to read him in Russian, this is a great web-page.

It's hard to find English translations on-line, but here is one, done by this gentleman of another one of Saadi's poems:

I held in my bath a per­fumed piece of clay
that came to me from a beloved’s hand.
I asked it, “Are you musk or amber­gris?
Like fine wine, your smell intox­i­cates me.”
“Till some­one set me down beside a rose,”
it said, “I was a loath­some lump of clay.
My companion’s scent seeped into me.
Oth­er­wise, I am only the earth that I am.”

One of my favorite Russian poems is also inspired by Saadi. It's Yesenin's riff on Saadi's work:

Ты сказала, что Саади
Целовал лишь только в грудь.
Подожди ты, Бога ради,
Обучусь когда-нибудь!

Ты пропела: «За Ефратом
Розы лучше смертных дев».
Если был бы я богатым,
То другой сложил напев.

Я б порезал розы эти,
Ведь одна отрада мне —
Чтобы не было на свете
Лучше милой Шаганэ.

И не мучь меня заветом,
У меня заветов нет.
Коль родился я поэтом,
То целуюсь, как поэт.

ETA: How do I do the equivalent of LJ cuts on DW? I don't want to inflict lengthy uncut entries on my friends.

Movie glee

May. 19th, 2009 01:11 pm
dangermousie: (SeI)
OMG YES. I have been eagerly, pathetically anticipating Mani Ratnam's next movie, a modern twist on the Ramayana (where Sita and Ravana might actually like each other *gasp*) with Abhishek and Aishwarya Bachchan for many many reasons: Mani being my favorite Indian director, liking Abhivariya (heee) together in movies, the story, Mani always getting the best performances out of his actors (Abhishek's best performance is in Yuva, IMO, and second best in Guru) but now I think I will utterly die of glee: his cinematographer walked out and he replaced him with Santosh Sivan. Yup. That Santosh Sivan, of Asoka and Dil Se.

*brb, screaming now*

I simply CANNOT wait for this movie. I should make a list of my most-anticipated Bolly flicks.

In other news, found these three clips from the Bright Star movie about Keats and Fanny Brawne. MMMMM. I defy you not to swoon.


Movie glee

May. 19th, 2009 01:11 pm
dangermousie: (SeI)
OMG YES. I have been eagerly, pathetically anticipating Mani Ratnam's next movie, a modern twist on the Ramayana (where Sita and Ravana might actually like each other *gasp*) with Abhishek and Aishwarya Bachchan for many many reasons: Mani being my favorite Indian director, liking Abhivariya (heee) together in movies, the story, Mani always getting the best performances out of his actors (Abhishek's best performance is in Yuva, IMO, and second best in Guru) but now I think I will utterly die of glee: his cinematographer walked out and he replaced him with Santosh Sivan. Yup. That Santosh Sivan, of Asoka and Dil Se.

*brb, screaming now*

I simply CANNOT wait for this movie. I should make a list of my most-anticipated Bolly flicks.

In other news, found these three clips from the Bright Star movie about Keats and Fanny Brawne. MMMMM. I defy you not to swoon.


Movie glee

May. 19th, 2009 01:11 pm
dangermousie: (SeI)
OMG YES. I have been eagerly, pathetically anticipating Mani Ratnam's next movie, a modern twist on the Ramayana (where Sita and Ravana might actually like each other *gasp*) with Abhishek and Aishwarya Bachchan for many many reasons: Mani being my favorite Indian director, liking Abhivariya (heee) together in movies, the story, Mani always getting the best performances out of his actors (Abhishek's best performance is in Yuva, IMO, and second best in Guru) but now I think I will utterly die of glee: his cinematographer walked out and he replaced him with Santosh Sivan. Yup. That Santosh Sivan, of Asoka and Dil Se.

*brb, screaming now*

I simply CANNOT wait for this movie. I should make a list of my most-anticipated Bolly flicks.

In other news, found these three clips from the Bright Star movie about Keats and Fanny Brawne. MMMMM. I defy you not to swoon.


dangermousie: (Dhoom 2)


Finished Aaja Nachle, a movie about a woman returning to her small town after many years abroad, and trying to save a performance venue and put on a production. It wasn't that great (though it wasn't bad either) but two things about it were wonderful: (1) seeing Madhuri Dixit again; and (2)Konkona Sen Sharma and Kunal Kapoor playing two people cast as Laila and Majnun in Madhuri's take on the famous story. They have such lovely chemistry - they should make more movies together (they have saved an atrocious "noble hooker yay" movie for me before) plus seeing the play performed was a huge highlight.

So, I bring you caps from my favorite scene - the production put on by Madhuri which is the famous legend of Laila and Majnun, the star-crossed lovers (played by KKS and KK). It was very very lovely.

Awwwwww: Twu Luv leads to Hideous Death. Now with 200% more stoning )

Also, I don't know how, but I somehow totally missed that Mani Ratnam's next movie, starring Abhishek and Aiswarya is a modern take on the Ramayana! Only in his version, Sita and Ravana have a thing???? In fact it's supposed to be a romantic movie! (I think Aish is playing Sita and Abhi Ravana). OMG. Isn't it sorta like having Jesus get it on with Mary Magdalene - i.e. pretty controversial? Mmmmm. This is going to be SO GOOOOOD (I have yet to see a Mani movie that I didn't utterly love) but I think some theaters are going to get trashed (I read they cut out a lovemaking scene because they didn't want to be controversial which made me LOL as I think Sita/Ravana is plenty controversial on its own). Unless the info is wrong and Abhi is playing Ram, in which case theaters are safe but I will enjoy the movie just as well.

ETA: Nope, checked it, and Abhi is Ravana. And apparently his character's sister kills herself as result of being offended by Aish's husband so he kidnaps her as revenge but they fall in love? Ravana/Sita. *boggle boggle boggle* Though presumably he doesn't have nine heads in this version. I am so excited because I think Abhi's performance in Yuva was his very best, and that was in a Mani Ratnam movie and he also played a violent abusive thug in dyfunctional love with a woman - I hated his character and couldn't take my eyes off him. So if this is half as good, I'll be in heaven.

Also, Govinda is Hanuman. I do not have enough glee in the whole world for this. (Vikram, a Tamil star I am not familiar with is Ram, but is playing Ravana in the Tamil-language version they are shooting simultaneously? That is super awesome).
dangermousie: (Dhoom 2)


Finished Aaja Nachle, a movie about a woman returning to her small town after many years abroad, and trying to save a performance venue and put on a production. It wasn't that great (though it wasn't bad either) but two things about it were wonderful: (1) seeing Madhuri Dixit again; and (2)Konkona Sen Sharma and Kunal Kapoor playing two people cast as Laila and Majnun in Madhuri's take on the famous story. They have such lovely chemistry - they should make more movies together (they have saved an atrocious "noble hooker yay" movie for me before) plus seeing the play performed was a huge highlight.

So, I bring you caps from my favorite scene - the production put on by Madhuri which is the famous legend of Laila and Majnun, the star-crossed lovers (played by KKS and KK). It was very very lovely.

Awwwwww: Twu Luv leads to Hideous Death. Now with 200% more stoning )

Also, I don't know how, but I somehow totally missed that Mani Ratnam's next movie, starring Abhishek and Aiswarya is a modern take on the Ramayana! Only in his version, Sita and Ravana have a thing???? In fact it's supposed to be a romantic movie! (I think Aish is playing Sita and Abhi Ravana). OMG. Isn't it sorta like having Jesus get it on with Mary Magdalene - i.e. pretty controversial? Mmmmm. This is going to be SO GOOOOOD (I have yet to see a Mani movie that I didn't utterly love) but I think some theaters are going to get trashed (I read they cut out a lovemaking scene because they didn't want to be controversial which made me LOL as I think Sita/Ravana is plenty controversial on its own). Unless the info is wrong and Abhi is playing Ram, in which case theaters are safe but I will enjoy the movie just as well.

ETA: Nope, checked it, and Abhi is Ravana. And apparently his character's sister kills herself as result of being offended by Aish's husband so he kidnaps her as revenge but they fall in love? Ravana/Sita. *boggle boggle boggle* Though presumably he doesn't have nine heads in this version. I am so excited because I think Abhi's performance in Yuva was his very best, and that was in a Mani Ratnam movie and he also played a violent abusive thug in dyfunctional love with a woman - I hated his character and couldn't take my eyes off him. So if this is half as good, I'll be in heaven.

Also, Govinda is Hanuman. I do not have enough glee in the whole world for this. (Vikram, a Tamil star I am not familiar with is Ram, but is playing Ravana in the Tamil-language version they are shooting simultaneously? That is super awesome).
dangermousie: (Dhoom 2)


Finished Aaja Nachle, a movie about a woman returning to her small town after many years abroad, and trying to save a performance venue and put on a production. It wasn't that great (though it wasn't bad either) but two things about it were wonderful: (1) seeing Madhuri Dixit again; and (2)Konkona Sen Sharma and Kunal Kapoor playing two people cast as Laila and Majnun in Madhuri's take on the famous story. They have such lovely chemistry - they should make more movies together (they have saved an atrocious "noble hooker yay" movie for me before) plus seeing the play performed was a huge highlight.

So, I bring you caps from my favorite scene - the production put on by Madhuri which is the famous legend of Laila and Majnun, the star-crossed lovers (played by KKS and KK). It was very very lovely.

Awwwwww: Twu Luv leads to Hideous Death. Now with 200% more stoning )

Also, I don't know how, but I somehow totally missed that Mani Ratnam's next movie, starring Abhishek and Aiswarya is a modern take on the Ramayana! Only in his version, Sita and Ravana have a thing???? In fact it's supposed to be a romantic movie! (I think Aish is playing Sita and Abhi Ravana). OMG. Isn't it sorta like having Jesus get it on with Mary Magdalene - i.e. pretty controversial? Mmmmm. This is going to be SO GOOOOOD (I have yet to see a Mani movie that I didn't utterly love) but I think some theaters are going to get trashed (I read they cut out a lovemaking scene because they didn't want to be controversial which made me LOL as I think Sita/Ravana is plenty controversial on its own). Unless the info is wrong and Abhi is playing Ram, in which case theaters are safe but I will enjoy the movie just as well.

ETA: Nope, checked it, and Abhi is Ravana. And apparently his character's sister kills herself as result of being offended by Aish's husband so he kidnaps her as revenge but they fall in love? Ravana/Sita. *boggle boggle boggle* Though presumably he doesn't have nine heads in this version. I am so excited because I think Abhi's performance in Yuva was his very best, and that was in a Mani Ratnam movie and he also played a violent abusive thug in dyfunctional love with a woman - I hated his character and couldn't take my eyes off him. So if this is half as good, I'll be in heaven.

Also, Govinda is Hanuman. I do not have enough glee in the whole world for this. (Vikram, a Tamil star I am not familiar with is Ram, but is playing Ravana in the Tamil-language version they are shooting simultaneously? That is super awesome).

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