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Vol. 1 #6

The White Issue 1/6/2011


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Contributors Contributors

1. Movies of the month - Krushna Dande 2. Book - Priya Dabak Movie of theMitra month: 3.1.Album - Srimanta 4. Vintage Movie - Krushna Dande 2. Book: Priya Dabak

3. Album: Srimanta Mitra 4. Vintage Movie: Saahil Dama


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Movies of the Month

- Krushna Dande

Money, huh? People do crazy things for it. I don’t know who first thought of using the same characters over and over again in a series, but whoever it was, it was a marketing genius. Hey, you don’t need no stinkin’ creativity or originality, just slap a popular character on the posters. The viewers will gobble that up like sheep. And why not. It’s worked in the past, and it’s certainly worked in the present. So, in the hottest month of the year we have a plethora of movies in the hottest franchises of the year. Let’s go through them, shall we? Pirates of the Caribbean 4: On stranger tides. Movie publishers do strange things. The first and second movies in the franchise were entertaining romps about the eponymous sea, centered around the inimitable Jack Sparrow. Inimitable seems to be a misnomer, because in this movie, Johnny Depp does a pretty bad impression of Jack Sparrow. The movie is filled with oversights, namely: If the first movies were successful, why erase the board? Orlando Bloom’s character is gone, so is Keira Knightley, and the character development is left to the character who has only one trait: wacky. The story is drivel. The entire time, the crews of three different ships are looking for the same thing: the local variant of the Nectar of Immortality. Hundreds of sailors risk their lives for a McGuffin only one person can take. And anyone paying attention can guess who that is. (Hint: It’s not Jack) The characters are caricatures. Jack is wacky, Penelope Cruz is hotheaded, Blackbeard is a dick, Barbossa is the righteous dick, and the Spanish captain is Prince [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prince_(musician)] The romance is bad. The interactions between Johnny Depp and Penel-

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ope Cruz are wooden. The mermaid priest romance is superfluous. Hangover 2 This is Hangover The bachelor party in Las Vegas goes terribly wrong as a group of immature dude-bros wakes up the next morning with amnesia and must retrace their steps to find the missing man. This is Hangover 2 The bachelor party Thailand goes terribly wrong as a group of immature dude-bros wakes up the next morning with amnesia and must retrace their steps to find the missing man. But yeah, the baby is a monkey. Woohoo for originality. Fast Five Okay, so arguing for the artistic merit of Fast and the Furious being diluted is way past us, so just give this one a pass. It’s the most critically acclaimed of the series anyway. Kung Fu Panda 2 This movie answers the question that everyone watching Kung Fu Panda was asking (at least according to Dreamworks): Where are Po’s parents? But yeah, reviews say it’s the best Non-Pixar western animated movie, so it has a raging endorsement. Compared to the mediocrity in the rest of the month. So that’s the take on this month’s movies. There are more sequels coming, like Transformers 3: Dark of the Moon, (which is where the movie should be screened,) and the increasingly less final Final Destination five. So, to announce this month’s movie of the month, we call up Arnold Schwarzenegger. And a translator. And a housemaid. So, Po, waddle up to the stage and collect your fictional award. And maybe try to convince Dreamworks to make a movie that wouldn’t be unwatchable if the character’s weren’t animals.


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The Shadow of the Wind

- Priya Dabak

The Shadow of the Wind is a gothic romance-thriller written by Spanish writer Carlos Ruiz Zafón. It was translated into English by Lucia Graves. Though written in 2001, this book is wondrous journey back in time. The book begins in the summer of 1945 in Barcelona. At the dawn of a beautiful day, a little boy, Daniel Sempere, is taken by his father to the Cemetery of Forgotten Books. For a ten year old, the place is a castle filled with mysteries. Thousands of volumes of books stack the shelves like lost souls waiting to be rediscovered. According to tradition, when someone visits the place for the first time, they adopt a book and it is their duty to keep it safe, forever. Daniel comes across a book, small and unnoticeable, its wine-coloured leather cover covered in golden dust. It is called The Shadow of the Wind and is written by a certain Julian Carax. Daniel spends that night and those after, lost in the book, which was brought to him as if by destiny. The boy finds his first love in the book. Spiraling from there is a beautiful, heart wrenching story about life. And unreserved love, hatred, lies and secrets, and broken friendships. It is about living in a closed society that is teeming with social prejudice. More than anything else, it is about the passion and love for books. The book casts a spell on Daniel, who then tries to find out more about the mysterious, little known writer. What he does come across is another mystery. A man is out to destroy, to burn all of Carax’s books. What intrigues Daniel the most is that the man claims to be

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a character from the very book, the Devil. And this man, a walking corpse, won’t let anything or anyone get in his way. It is said that Julian Carax is long dead, but Daniel’s mind keeps flickering back to that one question: “What if...” On his quest to find the truth about Carax, Daniel's life is altered in ways he couldn't have imagined possible. The novel moves along like strong winds blowing over the shadowy streets, uncovering hidden secrets as they pass by. The characters are many, and beautifully sketched. Every scene bursts with magic, from the coloured descriptions, right down to the dark details. The language is masterful and the essence of the story isn't lost in translation. You don’t need to be a hopeless romantic to fall in love with this book!

A Saahil Dama, Ishan Dabri, Krushna Dande production.


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Continuum

- Srimanta Mitra

“With any trilogy, the third in the series blows it open� - John Mayer And blow open it sure does. John Mayer's third and arguably most critically acclaimed album, not only delivers, but does it with enough diligence to connect with the listeners' hearts and feet at the same time. With more and elements of blues being incorporated into this album than his previous ones, the only thing that kept him from becoming a modern-day Hendrix was the indiscriminate use of drugs. With this album he added another Grammy award in his trophy shelf and also earned himself the title of "Slowhand Jr.," being a reference to Eric Clapton. This album, like all of Mayer's other works, has eloquent lyrics. Whether it be on the opener track 'Waiting on the World to Change' where he speaks about a generation misunderstood, and voices his opinion with politically fueled lyrics["It's hard to beat the system/ When you're standing at a distance"] or be it on 'Stop This Train' where he sings about growing up and how he feels about it, there is not a single song in this 12-track album that doesn't have mindblowing lyrics. The cheesy 'i-can't-get-over-you' songs[Dreaming With a Broken Heart; In Repair] are done with such an artistic edge, you'll be convinced that John Mayer would have been equally successful as a poet too. And you'll finally thank the Music Gods for sending someone like John Mayer, who can communicate with both the teenage (read: Beiber lovers) and the mature masses. John Mayer's guitar mastery, however appreciable, can be scary too. His guitar chops and flourishes are anything but conventional, and

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underlying his simple sounding-riffs, there is a great deal of applied musical theory. His main influence on guitar as he's sighted is Stevie Ray Vaughn, and he sure as hell would be proud of John for having achieved everything he has. In his cover of Henrix's 'Bold As Love', John Mayer plays the solo with undiluted passion and the recorded outcome is so fierce, it could melt faces off people. At times people might even wonder if it's just two hands he recorded all his guitar parts with. And they'll finally end up concluding that John Mayer is a four-handed alien from outer space disguised as a human specifically for restoring a music industry dominated by talentless blokes and supported by commercial clowns. The whole album packs a punch, serving as a bullet for the mind and a sedative for the soul, and happens to be one of those rare albums with great lyrics as well as equally great music.

A Saahil Dama, Ishan Dabri, Krushna Dande production.


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Groundhog Day

- Krushna Dande

Well, what if there is no tomorrow? There wasn't one today. What if you had all the time in the world and a blank slate? Anything you coud do would be fine. You live your life any which way and then come out unscathed. Blow buildings, run down people you despise or go ballistic with a flamethrower. Fun, right? Now, what if you do this for forty years? In a small shitty town? In the winter? Less fun? Or maybe not. Groundhog Day is the story of a reporter Phil Connors, played marvelously by Bill murray. On a trip to Punxsatawney for the annual report on the Groundhog Day with crew Rita and Larry, a ritual where a Groundhog named Phil emeges from his little hole and decides whether or not it will be winter for three more weeks depending on whether he sees his shadow. Phil records the telecast, tries to leave the town and can’t then goes to sleep after a failed attempt to bathe. He wakes up, and it’s Groundhog Day. Again. What did you do today? Oh, same-old same-old. Reality sets in after a few repititions: Groundhog day is here to stay. Phil goes through stages of existence, starting with vicious boredom, then on to recklessness, then angst, and finally retribution. But there’s a lot more there. The repeat of the day is the drudgery of human life. Then he turns to hedonism, as he steals bags of money, attacks people, and tries to get perfect dates with people he doesn’t know. Then he descands to nihilism, with the town eternally boring to him, with nothing to do. Then, he decides to try for Nirvana. Then he dies. But he doesn't.

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This day was perfect. You couldn't have planned a day like this. Well, you can. It just takes an awful lot of work. There are layers to this movie, and each time you pull out one there's another revealed. The unique deliciousness of every nugget of information makes your head spin. Director Harold Ramis put in more thought for this movie than Nolan probably did for Inception. Couple this with some of the greatest dialogues I’ve ever read, and a phenomenal performance by Bill Murray, and this movie is a must watch for everyone. Seriously.

A Saahil Dama, Ishan Dabri, Krushna Dande production.


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