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Sharadiya Dasgupta
Thursday , March 29, 2012

A few good actors

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I have often gone into a theatre to watch a Bollywood movie and been struck by the histrionics of a lesser known actor. And then see the face a few days later fleetingly in a TV commercial (and sometimes at Prithvi in a meatier and in most cases better written role). I wonder about these men and women. They look like the ones who pursue acting for the sheer love and passion for it - so how do they cope with the superstar-struck culture of Bollywood? Do they feel like a misfit in an industry where writing and characterization is often added as an afterthought well after the big actors and their 'look's have been decided? How do they balance out the aesthetics of theatre with the primarily commerce-driven ethos of contemporary Hindi cinema? I wanted to hear their stories and know their craft better because very frankly I....

Tuesday , September 27, 2011

What is wrong with Indian cinema?

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I am seething. I have had to walk out of two movies midway in the past one week despite trying very, very hard to bear the inanity being relentlessly thrown at me. What is wrong with Indian cinema? Specifically what is wrong with Indian directors? I can understand (and maybe even forgive) a bad movie. It can after all always be explained by the difference of sensibilities argument. But not a lazy movie. The sheer laziness of some of the recent releases frustrates me to no end. Let's look at some of this year's releases. Mere Brother Ki Dulhan, it's the prototype of the standard mostly-mindless, frivolous rom-coms. No problem with that. But hey humour can be well-written too. Why make it so stale and so sloppy? Or the other dud of this year - Dum Maro Dum. It's like the film maker thought a little bit....

Saturday , August 20, 2011

Some old fashioned love over the holiday weekend

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Why in Christ's name would I want to write about love now, of all times? As Rick would say "With the whole world crumbling, we pick this time to fall in love". So as the whole country (when I say that I mean my extremely limited understanding of the whole country, that is to say the country covered by media OB vans and social media patrons - beyond that remains an oblivion) prepares for its crusade against corruption, negative real income, plummeting Sensex, floundering governance and what-not, I thought I will give the movement a flower power spin (Oh c'mon it has been a little low on sex appeal right?. Now now don't hold this against me my pledged-to-the-cause brothers and sisters, I have always had poor wit) and provide some distraction to the overstressed, newly-awaken citizens. Like those really cool, bunch of boys sang "All we need....

Monday , May 23, 2011

Cannes Film Festival: Stellar style moments

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I have finally figured - going through the Cannes red carpet pictures and reading the movie reviews while indulging in guilt free (or so I have been made to believe) fro yo is the best way to survive the sweltering heat, reports of overgrown men in heat on both coasts of the US and the queen-prince tussle closer at home. "The kid with a bike" and "Melancholia" have me very very excited (despite the Nazi ramble of the director). As has "Midnight in Paris" (but of course) - an ode to lovely, golden Paris soaked in nostalgia and romanticism of the yesteryears. Though not entirely novel it is still being hailed by critics as Mr Allen's best work in a long time. But let me not digress; here we talk only of the fabulous fashion on display. So as the greatest cinema carnival draws to an end lets....

Saturday , April 23, 2011

For my fellow shallows, call me shallow if you may

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So last week I was holidaying on a charming island with sun kissed, white sand beaches and turquoise blue waters that blended into green towards the horizon. One afternoon we were at an idyllic sea side shack downing Mai Tais and LIITs and had no sense of time passing (oh the bliss!!). Suddenly it was time for sunset and I realized I had to change out of my beige-and-red sarong (from 'Anokhi' in case you want to know) which I had had draped all day long. There was a little shanty I could find to change but I still went ahead and changed. My friends were rather curious and had "Whats the fuss?" written all over. Yes I will agree it was partly because I was with a boy and I wanted to tease him and see his eyes lit up as I....

Thursday , March 17, 2011

Lakme Fashion Week: Where are the big stars?

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I cannot generally be accused of having extreme views but the overriding emotion at the end of the Lakme Fashion Week Summer Resort 2011 is one of tedium (seen-that-aplenty-before) and disappointment (uninspiring-fare-from-some-of-the-pros). In similar situations in the past our Bollywood starlets have sashayed in to sass up things a little. And sure most of the usual suspects were there in their bandages and jumpsuits showing off those toned (ermm...mostly) legs and collar bones but no jawdropping, stellar appearance even here. Not even one of the are-they-dating/have-they-split couples showed up so the gossip press and little birdies hung about desolately at the venue. Wardrobe malfunction was happening somewhere else to a certain Ms Kaif while gyrating on stage. But lest you think it was all bad: Sabyasachi Mukherjee: It is no secret that I love Sabyasachi. And that is as much because of my of....

Saturday , March 05, 2011

The curious case of Gaddafi and Galliano

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I find it very difficult to enthuse over the current news. Just when you think that at least the outlook is so black it can grow no blacker, it worsens. Seldom in the recent past (or at least in my lifetime) have these lines sounded truer. The times are so bleak and grim. The news has been an endless tirade of heartbreaking, gruesome truth. Bloody revolutions in several oppressive regimes of the Arab world and a political situation at home strife with scandals, financial misappropriations and slander (9 per cent growth and promise of a much-slender fiscal deficit offer scant damage control). Pakistan is fast headed towards total anarchy with the last few liberal voices being silenced with a brutal, almost surreal force. In neighbouring Bangladesh, Muhammad Yunus has been ousted from the institution he helped found highlighting what happens if....

Tuesday , February 22, 2011

Asian darlings of the fashion world

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Prabal Gurung: Chic is Prabal Gurung's middle name. This multi ethnic, (born in Singapore, raised in Kathmandu, trained in Delhi) New York-based designer is the toast of the high fashion world. His patrons include Mrs Obama and several A-list red carpet frequenters like Demi Moore, Thandie Newton, Zoe Saldana and the young Hailee Steinfeld. His collections have had wide ranging themes and inspirations but they are all characterized by sharp cuts, use of diverse fabric, maniac attention to details (from the fold of the drapes to the exact position of a brush painted rose on the bodice), luxe, uber feminity and sly seduction. He is as much an imaginative dress maker as a mean tailor. His most recent offering at New York Fashion week had plunging necklines, exacting fits and carried with them an air of langour and disintegration that....

Tuesday , February 15, 2011

'Live' from New York Fashion Week

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The milieu at New York Fashion Week has lived up to all my expectations and is worth every second of the seemingly interminable wait! Such frenzy, wonderful clothes, stunning people, fantastic shows, fabulous afterparties....oh pinch me.* The weather has also got a tad warmer allowing a lot of women around to dash those leggings and show off the result of the rigorous workout sessions. Anyway cutting short my narcissistic ramblings, let me get straight to business and discuss some of my personal highlights from the fashion week so far. BCBG Max Azria: Simple and fresh are the two words which popped into my head on seeing the Fall 2011 collection. The colours were mostly neutral with some orange, blue and maroon thrown in. Loved the breezy, laid back silhouette. Tadashi Shoji: The Tadashi Shoji show on the first day inspired by ancient moss gardens....

Friday , January 21, 2011

The designers my favourite characters should wear

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So they are making one of my most loved books and perhaps the most stupendous work of sub-continental fiction in the last 50 years, into a movie. And I don't have a good feeling about it. My mind works in pictures. The moment I start reading a book my mind's paint brushes swiftly spring into action and as the story unfolds the canvas gets filled with colours, teeming cities, forgotten towns, broken smiles, misty nights, lovers' sighs, heady parties and brutal loss. These stories have been played out in the cinema of my mind numerous times. So much so that at times those stories and their people seem far real and far familiar than the ones I encounter all around. So every time I learn that one of those stories is being converted into celluloid I grow excited and apprehensive in equal measure. Will....


More about Sharadiya Dasgupta

Sharadiya Dasgupta has a day job in the financial services industry. She enjoys fashion and all things fabulous. She hopes to have her wardrobe spilling over with Chanel, Marchesa, Oscar de la Renta, Valentino, Sabyasachi, Manish Arora some day but till then she is happy writing about these labels and their creations. She has a degree in Mathematics. Books (strictly fiction), films, music and microfinance are her other areas of interest.



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