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Chronicle

Chronicle is a 2012 science fiction film directed by Josh Trank and written by Max Landis based on a story by both Trank and Landis and starring actors Dane DeHaan, Michael B. Jordan, and Alex Russell (none of whom I have seen in anything before, I think). This is one of the found footage movies that has cropped up so much in the recent years but they just about manage to make it slightly different.

Anyways let’s get to the story. Andrew lives in Seattle with his verbally & physically abusive alcoholic father who never got over his injury forced retirement from being a fireman. They live in their home with Andrew’s mother who is bed-ridden and slowly dying on cancer. Andrew starts videotaping his life in the final year of high school. At school, Andrew is unpopular and frequently bullied.

Andrew’s cousin Matt asks him to join him at a rave party one evening in order for him to relax and make friends but Andrew gets pushed & shoved as he carries his camera with him. Outside the club, a popular student Steve asks him to film something that he & Matt has found in the woods nearby. Andrew joins the two to a hole in the ground that emits a loud strange noise and the three of them enter the hole and find a large crystalline object that is pulsating with a strange blue light emitting from it. When they touch the object, it turns blue and the 3 start bleeding from the nose and they black out. The camera cuts out at this point. A few weeks later the 3 discover that they have telekinetic powers; able to move objects with their minds.

They experiment with it, pulling small pranks in the school & shopping malls. As they keep using it, they find that their powers start to grow. Meanwhile as the area surrounding the hole has caved in they find that the sheriff’s department has sealed off the place to avoid people falling in. As they return home Andrew, without meaning to cause that much harm, uses his powers to push a rude motorist’s car off the road and into a river. The 3 friends go in after the person and Steve rescues him from the water. After this scare Matt says that they have to follow the rules of not using their powers on humans or too much in public. Later they discover that they can use their powers to fly and do so in the skies, going past clouds and playing with a ball. Later Steve convinces the shy Andrew to use the powers in the school talent show to gain popularity. Andrew amazes his fellow students by disguising his powers as an impressive display of magic tricks, juggling, and tightrope walking. That night at a party where he is the center of attention, Andrew drinks with his classmate Monica and then goes up to have sex. However he pukes on her and humiliates himself.

Andrew starts withdrawing and becoming hostile, finally lashing out at his father when he is pushed and overpowers him. He goes up into the skies floating in the middle of a lightning storm and Steve who joins him to calm him down dies when he is struck by lightning. At Steve’s funeral, Matt confronts Andrew about the suspicious circumstances of Steve’s death. Andrew denies knowledge or responsibility to Matt, but he privately begs forgiveness at Steve’s grave. At school, once again unpopular and rebuked, Andrew lashes out when a bully mocks at him and use his power to pull 3 teeth out from the bully. Andrew begins to identify himself as an apex predator, rationalizing that he should not feel guilt for using his power to hurt those weaker than himself. As his mother’s condition worsens he decides to steal money from some bullies and then a gas station to buy medicines from her. However the heist goes all wrong and the gas station explodes killing the attendant and putting Andrew in the hospital.

At the hospital Andrew’s father comes to see him and says to his son’s sleeping body that his mother is dead and that it is all Andrew’s fault. As he is about to assault him, Andrew awakens and blows out the outer wall of the hospital room. Matt experiences a nosebleed and comes to the hospital in time to save his uncle who was dropped down the hospital building by Andrew. Matt catches up with Andrew on top of the Space Needle but Andrew grows increasingly hostile and pushes his cousin away. Andrew attacks Matt and the pair fight across the city, crashing through buildings and hurling vehicles. Injured and enraged, Andrew uses his power to destroy the buildings around him, threatening lives. Unable to get through to Andrew, Matt tears a spear from a nearby statue and impales Andrew, killing him. The police surround Matt, but he flies away.

Sometime later Matt lands in Tibet and using Andrew’s camera films himself and his surroundings. Matt vows to use his powers for good and to find out what happened to them in the hole. Matt positions the camera to view a Tibetan monastery in the distance and says “You made it” before flying away, leaving the camera behind to continue recording the tranquil scene. Good movie, well shot & made. With a smaller budget of $15 mil. the movie made $123 mil in the theatres. I recommend watching this movie. 8 outta 10!

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Howdy Ma’am

A gentleman always stops to help the ladies. Especially if it is something as simple as taking a couple of photos of 3 of them at the mall. You do it, smile, hand back the camera, say “my pleasure” and ride off into the sunset.

I dunno why but I almost wish I had a cowboy hat to tip to the three young women who asked if I could take a couple of pics of them while at the mall. One on a Nokia phone and another on a honking big Canon camera. I was glad to oblige as we stood at the Food Court and I quickly took their photos and then smiled and went back to my coffee.

I should have said “Howdy little ladies” as well. Damn I would have made a great cowboy in the Wild, Wild West!

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Film Festivals

I haven’t been to a film festival ever but I would love to. Since I now usually watching mostly English language movies with the odd non-English language movie thrown in from time to time, the film festivals would have to be showing the same kind. As for genre of film, I’m open to all genres (yes even chick flicks if they are done well) and I can have favourites in all the genres and I try to watch all the various types. And I don’t mind low budget movies cause I have found a few low budget movies that were made quite well and remain as some of the best movies I have ever seen.

The state capital city Thiruvananthapuram (or Trivandrum) has a good sized yearly International film festival that has become quite prominent in it’s own right. My sister had been to attend the festival a few times and although she doesn’t stay for the entire duration of the festival, she does watch a few movies over a couple of days or so. She always has fond memories of each visit with either friends or her husband. She invited me one year as well but I didn’t want to go all the way to Trivandrum for just a film festival. Two years ago there was a Russian film festival here in the city and although I made plans to go for it I couldn’t as it was during a busy weekend for me.

I would like to go for a film festival but nothing has appealed that much to me that I need to drop everything else and go for it no matter what. But I hope one comes and I will attend it, fingers crossed.

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Resistence Is Futile

I feel like having accomplished something great! My till now anti-Scifi friend is finally convinced and he called me up on Wednesday late in the evening and said that he, his wife, his brother & brothers wife are all planning to marathon the entire live action Star Trek franchise tv series & movies. I almost cried when he told me that he spent some time & money to buy all the dvds, cause I spent years berating his lack of enthusiasm regarding Star Trek & other SciFi stuff.

So starting on the 24th of May (it’s was a harthal or strike here so no offices will be open) they are gonna watch a few episodes a day as a group.

Here is my suggested viewing sequence:

  • Enterprise
  • The Original Series
  • The Motion Picture
  • Wrath of Khan
  • The Search for Spock
  • The Voyage Home
  • The Final Frontier
  • The Undiscovered Country
  • The Next Generation
  • Deep Space 9
  • Generations
  • First Contact
  • Insurrection
  • Voyager
  •  Nemesis
  •  Star Trek 2009

And I was extremely happy that it seems that by the end of the weekend the four of them seem to have become semi-converts and are excited about exploring the Star Trek Universe. Mission accomplished!

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True Blood – Season 1

Combining dark humour with the supernatural and a mystery to boot, not to mention a whole lot of naked women and sex going on, True Blood was a runaway success from day 1. The HBO series is a huge success around the world. Detailing the co-existence of vampires and humans in Bon Temps, a fictional, small town in the state of Louisiana. The series revolves around a telepathic waitress Sookie Stackhouse and her lover Bill Compton who is a vampire. In the world on True Blood, vampires live alongside but mostly separate from humans.

Sookie works at Sam Merlott’s bar and her brother Jason is the town’s womanizer and a bit of a doofus. When women he has sex with keep dying, Jason comes under suspicion from the town’s sheriif’s office. However the women being killed have another thing in common – they all have had intercourse with vampires, with the exception of grandma Stackhouse who was killed in her own home possibly because she treated vampires like Bill with respect and also because the real killer came to kill Sookie but was surprised by her grandma.

Bill is different from other vampires in that he likes humans and wants to spend his time with them. He also falls in love with Sookie which amuses the other vampires and she start a romance with him. Jason meanwhile starts a romance with Amy who is an addict of ‘v’ (vampire blood) which behave like an aphrodisiac and hallucinatory drug to humans who take it. When she is also killed while in bed with Jason, he gives himself up thinking that he could be the killer. Adding to the fun is Tara, who is Sookie’s best friend and the daughter of a religious nutcase & alcoholic, Sam Merlott who is a shapeshifter who has a crush on Sookie, which causes some tensions with Bill and some awkwardness with Sookie when his shape shifting abilities are revealed to Sookie.

There are way too many characters and stuff happening for me to rehash them all here but some stand out like the mysterious Maryanne Forrester, a seemingly rich social helper who takes Tara under her wing after she got arrested for a DUI and crash and after she gets disowned by her ungrateful mother. But what is her relationship & history with Sam and is she a shapeshifter from his past? The killer is finally revealed to be Rene, a co-worker of Jason, and who’s real name is Drew Marshall, killing women who associate themselves with vampire, starting off with his sister. When Sookie comes close to finding out his true self, he sets her up to kill her but she is rescued by Sam and Bill who gets burned being out in the sun.

I’m a late entry into the series as I had watched a bit on HBO when it was shown here in India (heavily censored ofcourse) but never followed it. With the fourth season completed I have a lot of catching up to do but with only 12 episodes per season I will get there soon. Good show.

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Top 3 Things Before I Kick The Bucket

Off topic how did the phrase ‘kick the bucket’ come to be used? Why ‘kick the bucket’ – did someone die just as he/she kicked an actual bucket? Who knows but anyway onto my list

1) I want to achieve something that is meaningful and that will last a long time. Something that will have people appreciate me and talk about my achievement long after I am dead and my atoms are spread throughout the world. Something good & great. No matter what.

2) I would like to find Mrs. Roshan, well meet her before she becomes Mrs. Roshan, have both of us fall in love with each other and get married and live a nice, quiet happy life with a couple of dogs and cats. A small house or apartment of our own and be happy in our own company.

3) Have that perfect moment of happiness, contentment and peace. Forget all about the stuff in this world and just attain, for the lack of a better word, ‘perfection’. Cause then I can die with no regrets. That would be great.

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Huge Lunch With Sujith

Oh dear oh dear. I am so full this evening as I had large lunch with my cousin Sujith. I think we met today after about 3 or 4 weeks. And it was all on the spur of the moment. I had heard from a former colleague about possible vacancies coming up at new firm in Kakkanad. A quick internet search led me to their consultancies address and I wanted to go there and drop my resume with them. I also wanted to go get a hair cut as my hair is long on the sides and the back and since it is hot & sweaty for most of the day, I find it irritating and wanted to get my hair shortened.

I happened to call Sujith for something else and asked him if he wanted to come out for lunch and some drinks. He said he was bored and meeting for lunch sounded like a great idea. So we fixed a time and I told him to call me when he reached the city. I went to drop off my resume, spoke to the HR people at the consultancy and then went to get my hair cut. Unfortunately, I found 8 or 9 people waiting at the place I usually get my hair cut at and only barber there. I waited a while and then decided to come another day. I went to get some coffee and wait for Sujith.

By 1pm I reached Ravipuram and joined Sujith at the entrance to what is now my favourite place to have a good lunch – Golden Dragon. We went in and got a small table set for two. Choice of drink was Romanov Apple flavoured vodka (as you see in the first pic) with 7ups. For starters we had some amazing Schezwan prawns (pictured above) and small chicken pieces.  Topics we discussed was Sujith’s brother Sarath’s wedding, which had taken place a few days before, Star Trek, Star Wars, Babylon 5, Science Fiction in general and The Big Bang Theory.

Lunch was some kind of noodles for him and chicken fried rice for me. We had some garlic prawns and chicken with it and drank some more vodka. 3 hours later having some of the best food we have ever had we had to leave as the restaurant closes and 4 and only reopens by 7pm. But we didn’t want to go home yet.

So we decided to have some good desert which I am not sure was a good idea. But we went up to the Cocoa Tree cafe and ordered sundaes. Now this is the first time I have been here and did not know that their sundaes were infact jumbos. They were frickin’ huge! Sujith had the Butterscotch & Litchi sundae and I had the Rocky Road.

Getting up after that was a task. No wonder we sat there for almost 90 minutes. After that we said our goodbyes and it was almost 6pm by the time I reached home. Now I won’t eat till tomorrow afternoon.

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The NeverEnding Story Trilogy

Way back when I was a preteen boy I watched a movie based on German author Michal Ende’s novel of the same name – The NeverEnding Story. The movie The NeverEnding Story starred Barret Oliver, Noah Hathaway (Boxey from the original BSG), Tami Stronach, Moses Gunn, Thomas Hill, and Alan Oppenheimer as the voices of Falkor and Gmork. It’s about a boy named Bastien, who recently lost his mother, and who hides in a book store when chased by school bullies. He takes a book that the mysterious book store owner tells him isn’t for him and reads it at school (having being late, he skips classes altogether). It the book he reads about a fantasy land, Fantasia which is being slowly destroyed by the Nothing. He follows the adventured of a brave young warrior who is assigned the task by the child like Empress of putting an end to the Nothing. Atreyu travels far and loses his horse, is helped by a flying luckdragon named Falkor, is attacked by a wolf like creature and finally comes back to the Empress having failed.

The Empress says that only a human child, Bastien, can help them and he is whisked to Fantasia. Bastien is asked to think up a name for the Empress, which he so does calling her ‘Moonchild’. She then shows him that the Nothing has wasted Fantasia to all but one grain of sand but Bastian’s wishes and imagination can help to restore the world to its former glory. The more wishes he makes, the more it will be restored. Bastian makes his wishes and as he watches Fantasia is soon back to normal and he rides Falcor across Fantasis and back home.

The NeverEnding Story Part II came out in 1990 was directed by  George T. Miller and starred Jonathan Brandis as Bastian Bux, Kenny Morrison as Atreyu, and Alexandra Johnes as the Childlike Empress. Not as good as the original the story takes place a year or so after the events of the first season. Having problems with his father at home, Bastian is happy to be called back to Fantasia by the Empress and join Atreyu in saving the land again. Bastian gets influence by the evil sorceress Xayide and the  film involves her persuading Bastian to forget about his mission and instead make a series of silly wishes. Each wish that Bastian makes causes him to lose a memory, and when he loses all memories he will not remember Fantasia and the Emptiness will take over. He even sides with her and fights with Atreyu who is trying to make him aware of Xayide’s true nature and accidently kills him when they tussle and Atreyu falls to his death. Bastian chooses to wish his friend back to life and uses his last wish  by wishing for Xayide to have a heart. The overwhelming sense of suddenly being able to feel emotion proves to be too much for Xayide and the evil sorceress explodes in a blast of light, and with her destruction, Fantasia is restored in all its glory. This is boring film with bad acting and the only plus points being Brandis and the glamorous Xavide – played by Clarissa Burt!

4 years later we got a 3rd movie, The NeverEnding Story Part III starring Jason James Richter as the principal character Bastian Bux, and Jack Black in one of his early roles as the protagonist’s tormentor, the school bully Slip! Bastian has a new family, his father having remarried and along with his stepmom he has a new stepsister, who does not like him. Bastian gets chased by some bullies at school, finds the book in the library and returns to Fantasia. However the bullies find the book, the mediallion and on reading it understand the link between creating new stories. They use their cruelty to bombard the land with fireballs and a storm. Bastian now has to return back and get he book back from the bullies. He has a rock biter child & a talking, walking tree stump as company along with two gnomes.  Bastian manages to retrieve both AURYN and the book and defeats the bullies with a range of fighting moves he wished for. He is also aided by his new step sister who finally accepts him as her brother. The acting is so terrible that I wanted to break the screen into a 1000 pieces.

So the original while a bit cheesy is still a wonderful movie. I’d suggest you watch that and give the other two a miss. I’d given the movies a 7, 3 & 2 out of 10 respectively!

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My Idea For A New TV Show

Ok I had thought of this as a series of movies but I guess a good tv series with a suitable budget will also be appropriate. Initially that movie franchise would have been around 10 movies long, crossing generations but I guess it will be better served as a tv series.

Let’s take this into the future, far far into the future. Mankind, having almost completely depleted the earth’s resources and with the ozone layer issues, has chosen to venture out into deep space and settle on a few suitable planets in a nearby galaxy. However once they reached there a deep divide happens. Humanity is spread across 6 planets; 3 in one solar system and 3 in another a little further ahead. Religion has taken on a single form – a combination of Christianity & Islam and all believers of this religion have decides to settle on 3 planets in one solar system. This was not done easily as sometime the children of the Believers might not be believers but were forcefully taken and secluded in the 3 planets for the Religious minded humans. And on the other hand we have the Atheists, Non-Believers who have chosen Arts, Literature, Science and bettering oneself by learning & exploring and settled on 3 planets. And while the believers & non-believers share all the technological & scientific advances & inventions, they do not mix.

For a long time this coexistence continues and the tentative arrangement of live & let life is never tested and peace reigns for centuries. However 1200 years after the settlement things start to go wrong. The religious leaders of the believers have instilled in the minds of the Believers that the humans on the other 3 planets are heretic & living in sin as they haven’t accepted their religion, god or their way of life. A decision is made to start attacking the various settlements of the Non-Believers on smaller moons. In retaliation of the attacks the Non-Believers first try to contact and then fight back. This great human war, on a galactic scale will be the premise of the tv series. Also the main villains will be the religious leaders themselves and some antagonistic Believers who have a secret agenda other than conquering the planets of the Non-Believers. There will be sympathetic characters among the Believers as well who are just following orders in fear of angering their god.

A huge science fiction, spaceships & techny stuff that will blow Star Trek, Star Wars and all the rest out of the water!!!

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Bones – Season 3

Season 3 sees the start of the Gormagon story arc and introduces Dr. Lance Sweets, played by John Francis Daley, to the group. An FBI hired psychologist, Sweets is assigned to assess the working partnership of Agent Booth & Brennan after Booth arrested Temperance’s estranged father. While the two maintain that they have a rational understand of the reasons to arrest Max, Sweets knows that there is a hidden tension. A lot of humour is added to the show when Booth makes fun of Sweets youngish appearance & age. The more serious Gormagon arc which will end a little tragically for the team, starts off with the skull belonging to a highly talented violinist who disappeared after a concert.

As Zack is away Brennan searches for a new assistant. Angela and Hodgins hire a private investigator to track down Angela’s ex-husband, who is identified with the nickname “Berimbau”. Brennan starts a slow process of getting to know her father, visiting him reluctantly at the prison. One of the weirdest things I have heard is highlighted in an episode that involved pony play – role playing where men & women ride people who behave like horses for the duration of their stay in a large mansion with adjacent grounds. The ‘horses’ are cleaned, ridden and feed as if they were in fact animals but there is sex involved! Sheesh! Meanwhile, the FBI forces Booth and Brennan to undergo psychiatric counseling with Dr. Lance Sweets. Zack returns and takes up his former position within the team but it is obvious that he has changed.

Employees of the Jeffersonian Institute become murder suspects when the remains of a Jeffersonian intern is found in the building’s incinerator. Booth, Brennan and their team set about to investigate her death and find she had been working on the Gormogon case, which is still open. They acquire further motives for her death when they discover she had been in a romantic relationship with a Jeffersonian employee. Booth will also agree to pretend to still be Cam’s boyfriend for a family dinner but later is hit on by her younger sister when she finds out that they had broken up long ago. One of my fav episodes is one  in which the body of a teenage boy is found by his former high school classmates to have been hidden inside a time capsule that was buried 20 years ago. As the team investigates the class of 1987 to find the boy’s killer, they find a disk among his belongings, containing a game which would have been a landmark title in 1987 if released. They also discover he was the father of a classmate’s son. The death of a priest leads them back on the case of the Gormogon serial killer when the priest’s kneecaps were discovered to have been surgically removed. They realize the killer has a pattern for choosing victims after Angela finds a victim tree in the evidence vault.

Then there is the case of the dead Santa Claus – funny episode! But nothing is funnier or sweeter when Booth & Brennan have to take in a baby bot whose mother was killed in a car accident. The baby survived without a scratch and I laughed at Brennan’s uncomfortableness at holding and taking care of a baby, while Booth who is a father is a natural at it. However Temperance soon bonds with the baby, feeding him milk from a bottle and gets emotionally attached to him. After that Brennan’s father Max Keenan is on trial for the alleged murder of FBI Deputy Director Kirby. Everyone on the team, except for Brennan, is called as a witness for the prosecution during the trial. Brennan on the other hand is the forensics advisor for the defense, and she must rely on both her dedication to her family and her skill as an anthropologist to help free her father. Zack who never makes mistakes is caught on a mistake by Brenna’s new intern Dr. Clark Edison.

However the shock & twist will continue to be from  the Gormagon case. With everyone throwing theories with analysis as to how Sweets or Hodgins could be Gormagon, Dr. Brennan receives a mandible from the Gormogon in a package, and while trying to discover the origins of the tooth markings, Zack Addy is severely injured in an explosion. In the commotion, the widow’s son skeleton is stolen from the Gormogon vault within the Jeffersonian. Could Gormogon be in fact one of the Jeffersonian’s staff? The crew begins their investigation to find out who among them is working with the Gormogon, an apprentice, and more bones could be hidden. The shocking discovery is that Zack was the apprentice working for Gormogon, tearing a hole in the hearts of his colleagues & friends, their lives changed forever. Zack’s weaker personality was easily manipulated by Gormogon so he believed his belief system irrefutable, even going as far as to divide the bones of a lobbyist killed by Gormogon’s other apprentice among limbo. However, Zack still maintained a loyalty to his friends. As pointed out by Bones, he was willing to injure himself to keep Hodgins safe. He gives up the location of Gormogon’s house after Bones makes him realize his logic is faulty. Gorgmogon is killed in an FBI sting operation. At the end of the episode, prosecutor Caroline Julian cuts Zack a deal; he agrees to pled guilty to killing the lobbyist and cooperates; and the law will have him declared “Non compos mentis“; a decision committing him into a mental asylum rather than to prison.

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2012 Stanley Cup Finals – LAK vs NJD

VS
Did not see this final coming? I certainly did not and from the looks of it neither did a lot of fans & critics. I’m surprised that both teams have made it to the finals and it’s a credit to both sets of coaching staff & players alike. So too the fans of both teams for they cheered and they believed. Now, who’s gonna win the cup? Starting May 30th we have our finals a best of seven slugfest. LA seems more attack oriented while NY will go defense first.

Will it be a tale of two goalies, a rising star in LA’s young American Jonathan Quick on one end with Hall of Famer, 3 times Stanley Cup winner & hockey legend Martin Brodeur for the Devils? At 40 Marty is in the finals again and it would be great if he could win the cup for the 4th time – what a way to retire!

The LA Kings haven’t been to the finals since their Mark Messier inspired 1994 cup win. I the 18 years since then, the Devils have been to the finals 4 times, this one making it 5, and won Lord Stanley’s cup 3 times. The Kings haven’t been close since. It will be interesting.

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A Nice Evening Out With The Ladies

Well I ended up having a nice evening out with my friends. Like I stated earlier, an earlier plan for an evening with a nice lavish dinner with 10 of us did not take place at the end of last month and we were disappointed. A few days one of my former colleagues Ajeeba had asked me if I was free on the evening of the 25 to come out for a dinner. I said sure but it would only be four of us as the others wouldn’t be able to make it. That was still ok although I wish everyone could make it. So anyway, I checked two evenings ago and the dinner was still on.

Today late afternoon the venue was decided to be a restaurant called Salt n’Peppa (highly original I know :p especially since a stupid Malayalam movie with the same name became popular a year or so ago) which was earlier called Chicknik but they stopped the KFC style fried chicken business and it is now a family restaurant with Chinese & Indian fare. We agreed would meet there by 7:15 pm so I had time to go pay my cell phone bill. Ok so by 7:15pm I took an auto and managed to reach the place but they were delayed due to road blocks on their side of the city. So by 7:45pm finally the five of us – Ajeeba, Vidya, Shalina and her 6 year old cutie pie of a daughter & myself went into Salt n’Pepa and choose a table. We ordered fried rice & noodles, chilly chicken, chicken 65 – which we planned to share – while Shalina wanted a shwarma plate. Her daughter had porottas and chilly chicken. We also got us a 2liter bottle of Pepsi to wash our dinner down.

We had a lot of catching up to do and chatted 10 to the dozen. We spoke about a lot of our former colleagues, who got married, who got divorced, who got kids, blah blah blah. At times I think we were quite loud or….excuse me the ladies were loud. I was decent . Shalina’s kid, whose name escapes me but we all call her Chottu anyway, was energetic and inquisitive and explored all four corners of the small establishment. She was fun to be around and warmed up to me quite easily. I last saw her when she was 2 years old. The food & Pepsi arrived and we started eating and still continued to eat.

Pretty soon it was time for Vidya to go as she has the furthest to go by bus. I met Ajeeba’s husband, who is a friend and my senior from high school and also met Shalina’s husband for the first time. We left the hotel around 9:45 pm and I went to find an auto to bring me home. I really miss them and wish I could spend more time with them and the rest of my old team members. Next time I hope!

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Halloween (2007)

I must say that I like Rob Zombie as a director. This is only the second movie of his that I have seen but his brand of horror/slasher/gore is a class above the usual fare that we get. I had never seen the original Halloween movies to date but I was definitely interested in seeing this one yet I dunno why it took me so long. Halloween came out in 2007 as a re-imagining of the beloved horror/slasher franchise. Directed & co-produced by Zombie the movie stars Tyler Mane as the adult Michael Myers, Malcolm McDowell, Scout Taylor-Compton, Brad Dourif, Danielle Harris & Daeg Faerch as the child Michael. You have small roles by William Forsythe, Sherri Moon Zombie & Danny Trejo.

We get a detailed backstory on Michael Meyers. As a child he grew up in Haddonfield, Illinois with his stripper mom, his older sister, baby sister and his mom’s abusive biker boyfriend Ronnie. Michael prefers to wear plastic masks and kills small animals in secret. On Halloween pushed to the brink by a school bully, he hides in the woods and brutally murders the bully by beating him up with a baseball bat. As he goes home, he tied up Ronnie and kills him with a knife, then kills his sister’s boyfriend and his sister. When his mother comes home Michael is sitting on the front porch holding his baby sister on his lap. The cops come and take him away and after a long trial Michael is s found guilty of first degree murder and sent to Smith’s Grove – Warren County Sanitarium under the care of child psychologist Dr. Samuel Loomis. Dr. Loomis tries hard to get through to the child but the child retreats deeper into himself, claiming no recollection of the killings. When mocked by a nurse, Michael kills her with a fork, an event which leads his mother to kill herself at home, unable to bear what her son has become.

Despite many years of trying Dr. Loomis gives up as Michael sits for hours making  papier-mâché masks, closing himself off from everyone else, barely speaking. Dr. Loomis retires and writes a book on Michael. At the sanitarium two orderlies rape a newly institutionalized patient in front of Michael, provoking him. He snaps and kills all 3 of them and then even the kind janitor the next morning and escapes the sanitarium. At a truck stop he kills a trucker and takes his overalls and finds his way to Haddonfield. He reaches his old house and recovers a large knife and a Halloween mask (the iconic one) that he had taken from his older sister’s boyfriend. He then stalks his baby sister Laurie, now a teenager and unaware of her biological history. Laurie was adopted as a baby once her mother killed herself and had been raised by the Strodes family living in Haddonfield. Throughout the day, Laurie witnesses Michael watching her & her friends from a distance.

That night being Halloween most people are out at parties and Laurie is babysitting her neighbour Tommy. Her friend Lynda meets up with her boyfriend in Michael’s old home (whatever the fuck for) and have sex. Michael appears, murders them, and then heads to the Strode home, where he murders Laurie’s parents. Laurie is now also looking after Lindsey, a small girl, as Annie has gone to have sex with her boyfriend. Michael kills her boyfriend but leaves a bloodied Annie alive. Laurie finds her friends near death and calls 911. Meanwhile Dr. Loomis comes to Haddonfield, having been alerted to Michael’s escape. He meets up with Annie’s father, Sherriff Brackett and they head towards the 911 call. Michael kidnapps Laurie and takes her to their old home.  Michael approaches Laurie and tries to show her that she is his younger sister. not understanding him, Laurie takes his knife and stabs him and as she escapes, Loomis arrives and shoots Michael a couple of times. However, as Loomis is about to take Laurie away in his car, believing Michael to be dead, Michael catches up with them and smashes the car window. Laurie runs into the house, as Loomis is killed by Michael. Inside the house Michael hunts his baby sister until cornering her on a balcony & charges at her head-on and knocks both of them over the railing. A bloodied Laurie finds Loomis gun and shoots Michael while on top of him, presumably killing him as the movie ends to Laurie’s screams.

Bloody & gory but very well shot I must say. The kid who plays a young Michael is awesome, sinister and scary in depicting a derange & psychopathic mind. Tyler Man does a fine job as the killer without speaking a word. I quite liked this movie and will get the sequel soon. 7 out of 10!

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Europa Has More Water Than Earth

Based on data acquired by NASA’s Galileo satellite, astronomers think that the oceans beneath Europa’s icy exterior are likely 2—3 times more in volume that that of water of all the oceans on Earth! Not 2—3 times more proportionally, 2—3 times more in total volume. Jupiter’s little moon is packing all that H2O and scientists say that there could be a significant chance of it harbouring life!

Even if it doesn’t think of all that water; we’d have a possible source to go to replenish our stock. Ofcourse no one knows for certain how thick the ice could be, could be a few miles thick, and it might be extremely tasking to dig deep down into it and arrive at the oceans. But if it could be done, exploring the oceans below would certainly be  amazing and who knows what we could find. And even if there no alien lifeforms there just exploring the waters would be so cool. I would love to be able to see that happen in my lifetime. Hell, I’d kill to be able to go there myself and be part of the first landing party.

The image above is from io9.com comparing all the water on Earth made into a globe on the right vs all the water on Europe made into a globe on the left. See the size difference?