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Saturday, January 15, 2011

Viva Vamps!

Greta of Memsaab Story returns to Masala Zindabad for a discussion of vamps in Hindi films. Far more than one-number dancers or silent eye candy, the Amazons of Bollywood are sexy, bad, in charge, and out of control. Often they pay the ultimate price for behaving outside the bounds of filmified society, but in our conversation we discover interesting twists and exceptions to the moralizing cliché that sex = death.

Also for discussion:
  • What's the difference between an item girl and a vamp?
  • How do vamps relate to heroes? Must a vamp be defined in contrast to the heroic? Is there any kind of bond between them other than sacrifice and reform?
  • What kind of personality would a performer need to be a true vamp?
  • Have changing real-life conditions for women throughout the decades shaped the need or desire for vamps in contemporary films?
Some of the links we mention:
Here are some clips of Faryal, Memsaab's current favorite vamp.
"Dekh To Kya Hai Aaj Ki Mehfil" (Puraskar, 1970)

Jewel Thief, 1967

"Chilman Ka Girjaana Allah Allah" (Shararat, 1972)

"Yeh Duniya To Hai Bas Paise Ki" (Do Thug, 1975)

The infamous not-really-a-bad-girl Padma Khanna number.

"Husn Ke Lakhon Rang" (Johny Mera Naam 1970)

And a turn from a modern-day vamp, Mumaith Khan.
"Bongaru Kodipetta" (Magadheera, 2009)

You can listen to Masala Zindabad - Viva Vamps! by clicking the player above, subscribing to our feed, on iTunes or downloading here.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

What. the. Frack?! The Films of 2010 - Part 2

In part two of our series on the films of 2010, Samrat is back with Amrita and Beth to talk about more oddballs, underdogs, and also-rans. Today's episode covers:

A few more Unusuals: Striker, Robot

Can you think of heroes more different than Siddharth and Rajnikanth? Neither could we.

The Little Movies that Could
: Love Sex aur Dhoka, Udaan, Do Dooni Char

Other Things We Couldn't Remember: Badmaash Company, Chance Pe Dance, the roller skating one....

Plus wondering how Tees Maar Khan would turn out (this episode was recorded before it released) and our top picks for the year. Listen to Samrat's impressively prescient diagnosis and why Kay Kay Menon is awesome. For a more detailed discussion of Tees Maar Khan, join Beth et al at Upodcast: The Perils of Bollywood Fandom & Reactions to Tees Maar Khan.

Available on iTunes, through subscription of our feed, or download here.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

What. the. Frack?! The Films of 2010 - Part 1

Even as the stink on Tees Maar Khan begins to fade and voting for the Filmfare award nominations reaches a close, let's not say alvida to 2010 just yet. In a two-part series, Amrita and Beth are joined by friend and life-long film nut Samrat to review the fabulous, fine, foul, and completely forgettable films of 2010. Today's episode covers:

The "Comedies": Golmaal 3, Housefull, Action Replayy, No Problem

The Romantics:
I Hate Luv Storys, Aisha, Anjaana Anjaani, Band Baaja Baarat, Kites, Guzaarish, Break Ke Baad

The Epics:
Dabangg, Veer, Raajneeti, My Name is Khan, Raavan, Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey

The Unusuals:
Ishqiya, Peepli Live, Striker

You'll notice we never got around to discussing some of the aforementioned, which should tell you something about them.

Available on iTunes, through subscription of our feed or download here. In the meantime, stay tuned for Part 2.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Going to the Movies: Leena

Leena of A Spoonful of Ghee gives a desi, suburban-intrepid counterpoint to downtown-focused Todd on watching Bollywood in the San Francisco Bay area.

Starting at the age of 12, Leena relied on the Naz 8 (now closed) for her Bollywood fix. These days she has a few other options available, but nothing can replace the bickering aunties and screeching children of the Indian multiplex of her youth. And whatever you do, do not miss her re-enactment of the cinema's hotline listing that week's offerings and bragging about a film featuring "the one and only superstar, heartthrob of millions, yes, the one and only Sanjay Dutt."

She also has a great post on her experiences renting Bollywood films in the San Francisco area here.

Leena, Beth is desperate to go to the movies with you. She knows exactly what you mean when you talk about missing your little raffle ticket stub. Call her.

Available on iTunes, through subscription to our feed, or download here.

This story and all others will be collected at the series page, which is also linked on the left of the main site. We'd love to hear yours and hope to add a new each week, so send yours in! Submission requirements and instructions, as well as an overview of the project, are on the series page.