Sunday, 26 July 2009

'Cinema under the stars'

caught my eye while surfing the 'whats on in London' web page and i decided i had to go for it. What came to my mind immediately was the scene from 'The Wedding Planner' where JLo and Matthew McConaughey watch a movie in a park eating M&M's. The event was over a span of 5 days and i had seen all the movies mentioned except the one called 'Funny Face,' a 1957 musical starring Audrey Hepburn and Fred Astaire. What could be more romantic than watching a classic under the star studded sky? So I quickly did some research on the park in which it was being screened, timings, how to get there etc. and sent it out to Ro hoping he would be as enthu as i was. To my surprise he replied saying we should get a bottle of wine and just go. I was thrilled and i went a bit overboard preparing an entire picnic.
Syon Park, the home of the Duke and Duchess of Northumberland, was the perfect venue for the evening. Although getting there was a bit of an issue, with us forgetting to get off at the required stop (which Ro claims was because of my non stop chit chat that we didn't notice the stop and over shot) and the sudden down pour which put us in a state of bewilderment on whether the show would take place at all, we were relieved to see a whole lot of cars at the car park and people walking in with huge picnic baskets. After paying 25 quid for both of us (yes very expensive indeed) we made our way to the park. It was so beautiful with well-manicured lawns and pretty flowers and trees breaking the monotony. There was a big glass conservatory, maintained in tropical temperature, growing all sorts of vegetables, creepers and palms. There was also a lily pond and an entire section on Cacti. The movie was supposed to start at 9pm, but it still wasn't dark by then and so we ended up finishing off our food and half the bottle of wine. There was a good crowd and most of them came fully prepared with portable chairs and huge picnic baskets and even umbrellas (which we also had brought along). By about 9.30 the movie started and everyone settled down pretty fast. The movie was ok. I expected it to be like the 'Breakfast at Tiffany's' type, but it didn't come close to that. Audrey Hepburn is gorgeous as ever and Fred Astaire is old. Towards the end, it started getting a bit chilly and the wine had made us pretty tipsy and we completely started fooling around and i secretly hoped the movie would come to an end because of the cold winds. I must admit, the whole idea of a romantic evening under the stars, huddled together with a blanket, was more appealing than the movie itself, though 25 bucks for a night out was a bit on the steep side, but what the hell...these are things you do once in your life.
There are more outdoor movies coming up in September at the South Bank Centre and are fee of cost. Only thing is, they are showing movies like 007 and Slumdog Millionaire which i cant really associate with 'romance.' I would however like to go see 'Mamma Mia,' the sing-along version again, just so i can scream out the songs :)
Events like these make me feel happy being in London.
I kicked myself for not taking my camera and had to make do with Ro's phone camera. So please bear with the 'not so perfect' pics.

The Great Conservatory, Syon Park

One of the Lily Ponds

A huge Cactus

Enjoying the picnic. See how bright it was...time was around 8.40pm

The huge screen

Thats the last part of the movie. Its not too clear.

Wednesday, 22 July 2009

To Watch or not to watch

An update on the movie scene:

Latest ones:
The Hangover- Hilarious movie. Loved every bit of it from beginning to end. Its after a long time that i have seen a movie that kept me amused all the way through to the end. Every scene was funny and yes Vegas is as wild as the movie portrays it ;)

Bruno- I think Sacha Baron Cohen looked gorgeous in the movie. I honestly enjoyed it better than Borat and it was less gross. I still keep recalling scenes from the movie and crack up. I also recently saw Ali G Indahouse, his first movie and it was such a drag.

Drag me to Hell- I am a total sucker for horror movies, but my other half is not. I would watch the scariest of movies and then not sleep for a week because the scenes haunt me, invariably waking up Ro in the middle of the night and declaring i cant sleep because of bad dreams. He banned horror movies. But i still somehow convince him to catch them once in a while and 'Drag me to Hell' happened during one of those times. Its got its 'boo' moments and sometimes 'too gross to handle' moments, but its not scary scary and i can assure you wont have bad dreams. The climax was awesome and unexpected and i loved how the movie ended.

My Sisters keeper- I bawled my eyes out during this movie and now thinking about it, it was not even that sad a movie. Its the usual with the family battling the case of a daughter with cancer and the whole drama attached to it..oh and ya there is a slight twist which is not that important after a point of time. I saw this movie on my own and there were loads of women in the theatre who were in the same boat. I could hear sniffs and sighs and when the movie was over all of us ran to the ladies' with red eyes and acknowledged each other with a smile that said it all. I realized i love watching chick flicks on my own and not with Ro.

Public Enemies- Usually id sit through any movie starring Johnny Depp without uttering a word, but this one, i felt, dragged on quite a bit and in spite of the story-line being good and all, it still seemed like a dull one at the end. Like right now when I'm trying to remember what it is about the movie that was so striking, i cant seem to remember anything great. So i guess, to sum it was just another drama/action flick.

Sunshine Cleaning- If you have seen Little Miss Sunshine and you liked it, there is a slight chance you might not like this. Because Sunshine Cleaning (by the same producers) is nothing like LMS. The whole feel of the movie is similar, but after a while, you just want the movie to somehow end and when it does end, you wonder why you sat through the whole thing, all the while knowing what exactly was going to happen in the end. I know, it sucks! But chicks would dig it and i didn't mind either. Mindless, but still not bad enough to make me quit the movie half way through.

Year One- A no-brainer. What do you expect when Jack Black stars in a movie anyway? I wouldn't say it was 90 minutes of torture, but its not one id want to spend money and go see. If you can borrow a DVD or something, you can watch it while cooking or something. It can just play in the background and you wouldn't really care if you missed scenes.

Ice Age 3. Dawn of the Dinosaurs (3D)- Ice Age 1 was nice, Ice age 2 was really nice and Ice Age 3 was just about ok. Children would prefer the third part to the first two. So you can imagine how lame the plot was. Ro was thoroughly bored and hated it when people laughed for all the ridiculous scenes. He was more pissed because he had to pay an extra 2 quid for the 3D glasses which, by the way, wasn't that great either. There were no scenes in the movie which were worth capturing the 3D effect.

Transformers Revenge of the Fallen- This was torture for me. They diluted the movie with insignificant emotional traumas and shit like that and the movie went on and on and on.

Terminator salvation- I didnt sleep through this, but it didnt keep fully involved either. The special effects were pretty neat.

Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince- I haven't seen this one and don't intend to. But i just wanted to share my thoughts because its been publicised like crazy here, for all the wrong reasons i suppose. The only thing people are talking about is the snogging. Seriously, whats happened to the fantasy world of magic and wizardry? Interviews after interviews on how it was kissing Daniel Radcliffe, how Rupert Grintt spends the first half of the movie kissing, not to mention how awesome a kisser he is. And Emma Watson....its all about her wardrobe malfunction at the red carpet ceremony. Ro comes to the defensive when i make snide remarks about HP and says its a coming of age movie. yeah, so its no different from the other movies then!

Older ones:
Religulous- Its more like a documentary and not a movie. But stand up comedian Bill Maher has done a good job with his take on religion and faith. It might be offensive to some, but if you take it in the right sense, its hilarious and entertaining.

Tuesday, 14 July 2009

I'm still mourning...

...the death of Michael Jackson. I still remember how Ro woke me up one morning and said Micheal Jackson had died and i just couldn't believe it. I spent the next couple of days researching him online, catching up on interviews done by BBC journalist Martin Bashir and the Fox Network documentary contradicting Bashir's accusations. Also saw Oprah's interview and the weird one by Larry King at the Neverland Ranch where they supposedly saw MJ's ghost in the corridor and the video shows this faint figure vanish. I get unbelievably spooked by such weird things and i swear i couldn't sleep one night because, thanks to my husband, he made matters worse by reminding me of the scariest of things. I almost convinced him to work from home the next day! Yes, I'm a total chicken when it comes to silly things like this.
And after seeing these videos i have these relentless discussions with Ro (more like with the wall, because Ro thinks I'm easy to fool and all his interviews are PR gimmicks) who hardly gives ear to it. From his interviews what i perceived was his childhood was taken away from him and he with his fame and money was able to relive those childhood days in a whole lot of ways. A friend visited us last weekend and he and Ro ganged up against me on the whole MJ scenario. I got all worked up..and they thoroughly enjoyed seeing me let off my cool.

Anyways, yesterday was supposed to be the first of his 50 shows here at the O2 and a huge crowd had gathered outside the arena to commemorate his life. There was a huge screen displaying his last public appearance at the O2 and also his music videos and other footage. The crowd laid flowers, cards, stuffed toys and photographs and signed the huge Memorial wall, including yours truly:)
Our apartment complex overlooks the O2 Arena and these huge laser billboards can been seen from really far away and whatever show is on, we come to know in an instant. But yesterday, i was roaming around in Canary Wharf and on my way back, there were huge crowds getting out of the tube station and my inquisitive mind followed the crowd to the Arena and this was the scene there. So today me and Ro took an evening stroll down to the O2 and I paid my tribute to MJ by signing the wall.
I know i will never hear the end of it from Ro who has been irritating me with the sick MJ jokes but i guess i needed was like getting closure and i got to bid the final goodbye.

Tuesday, 7 July 2009

Pride London Parade

The recent victory for Gay rights in India got me thinking. I wondered if i was comfortable with the whole idea. I cringe when i see two women kissing in public or men holding hands and caressing each other (which is a very common sight here). I'm not against it all, its just that i need a little getting used to i guess. Good for them is all i can say, although i couldn't help but think how id react if i see the same thing happen back home.
Coming back to London, the Pride London Parade was in full swing on Saturday. I insisted i wanted to go see what it was all about. Ro as usual thought it was gross (except if there were hot women who were kissing each other...yeah pardon my husband who thinks that's every mans dream come true). I promised there would be hot women (ya i play along) and we watched the entire parade on Oxford street. tactfully i took him to Oxford Street because i wanted to do some shopping too.. It was a good idea because the Parade started from there and proceeded onto Piccadilly Circus, finally ending at Trafalgar sq. We got a pretty decent view of the parade and it was good fun with great music and loads of eye candy. I'm posting some pics. I guess they would speak better than my words. Enjoy!

The Parade starts off with the Chairman of the LGBT

The musicians

The colourful rainbow flag which is their trademark

The Royal Navy

Wedded Bliss

This float had the 'Hare Rama, Hare Krishna' chant in full swing

The London Swim Club

The British Airways Crew

The Food Industry

The National Health Service

The best part of the show were these CK models who just looked so so so so sexy with the perfect tanned bod and awesome looks. I secretly hoped they weren't gay. But who are we kidding, who else can carry off those teeny weeny undies and flip flops so damn well.

I'm still having dreams about them :)

The Older LBT Community

The Royal Army