Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Completed Project Poirot

Today i completed reading all poirot novels and short stories.

This was a project i embarked on 2 years back while in hospital recovering from a surgery. I had completed reading "Mysterious affair at Styles" and i was hooked.

I began to read all poirot novels in the published order. Some of them were brilliant, and quite a few, not quite so. But it was a pleasurable journey. Every good one was complex, and satisfying to the core. It was like poirot and hastings became my friends. When i read that sentence in "Curtain: Poirot's last case" i was heart-broken. It was like i lost a long-known friend.

There are 33 novels and 51 short stories featuring Hercule Poirot. These are my favorites among them:

The Mysterious Affair at Styles
The Murder of Roger Ackroyd
Lord Edgware Dies
Murder on the Orient Express
Murder in Mesopotamia
Death on the Nile
Appointment with Death
Sad Cypress
Five Little Pigs
After the Funeral
Dead Man's Folly
The Clocks
Hallowe'en Party

It is said that like Arthur Conan Doyle, Agatha Christie was also fed up with the popularity of Poirot after some time. This is evident in some of the later books.
where sometimes Poirot makes very late entries, or is lazily written. Sometimes Christie tries her hand at something where Poirot doesn't really fit in - spy thrillers. These kind of novels were boring. (The Big Four etc.)
Sometimes ideas are rehashed - The Mystery of the Blue Train is a stretched version of the short story The Plymouth Express. One thing i noted is that this story was used in one of the issues of "Inspector Garud"

Poirot is not as accessible as Holmes. He is more proud of himself, (sometimes even ridicules Holmes!) has a lot of peculiar old-fashioned ideas. He holds a lot of cards to himself till the end.
But he is a "real nice little man!" I am going to miss him.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Things i am going to miss

all the movie things
I could see all the releases in the last eight months as soon as they released. Movies which has to be enjoyed in 3D(eg-Coraline) and IMAX (Monsters vs Aliens) - I could enjoy them as it is supposed to be.

This summer is going to be a spread of 3D movies. I am going to miss them all...
Pixar's Up
Ice Age 3 Dawn of the Dinosaurs
Final Destination: Death Trip 3D
Toy Story and Toy Story Re-release in 3D

I checked the theatres in Bangalore also, there also no 3D movies are playing.

Movies made in IMAX - they are a feast to the eyes. Everything feels more real.
I checked the IMAX theatres in India and the closest one is in Hyderabad. All of them are playing old (by my current standard) movies. We have quite some IMAX movies coming this summer.

Star Trek: The IMAX Experience
Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian: The IMAX Experience
Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen: The IMAX Experience
Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince

Hmm..I could plan some trips to Mumbai Adlabs IMAX or Hyderabad IMAX!

Being close to Hollywood has some perks. Many independant movies which are good but dont get so much publicity are released only in LA and NYC. And in LA we have a lot of movie houses which cater to these kind of movies.

There are many historic movie houses which routinely have special screenings of classics and blockbusters of yesteryear. You could catch these movies in your 15" laptop, but seeing them on the big screen is an experience you cant match.

Recently there was a movie marathon of Matrix series where they showed all 3 movies in a day. This week, there are screenings of Vertigo (Hitchcock) Casablanca and Reservoir Dogs!

Then there are advance screenings. Movie producers hold advance screenings of upcoming movies in select theatres, to get audience/press feedback. This is totally FREE.

The public libraries here...they have huge collections. of comics and DVDs! Free membership! Original DVDs! I have started a mission to compile a 1TB movie library before i go.

Netflix. I hate their throttling but I have found a way out. And there is no better way to get hold of those rare movies.

Some of the food here... I love them. Pancakes. Barbecue. Tortilla Chips with hot Salsa. Aloe Vera Juice.

After being in California for 8 months, i have become a wine-file. Do you get Sauvignon Blanc in India? I hope so.

Attributes of American Life
Organization. Cleanliness. Preservation of nature. Internet usefulness. Cool Rental Cars. Open culture where you can express yourself freely. Respect for pedestrian. Respect for traffic laws.

Choti Choti magar Moti batein
Paper towels. Vending machines. Redbox. Powdered coconut. Ready to cook chapati. Fully furnished Studios.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

We want to thank the academy...

In a colorful function in the Kodak Theatre, Hollywood, we were presented with the Oscar award for the best couple. :))

In other news Slumdog Millionaire sweeped the Oscars with 7 awards including the Best Film, Best Direction, Screenplay and Music. I was glad to see a Keralite, Resul Pookkutty getting Oscar for best sound mixing for Slumdog Millionaire.