Movie Review*****Sachin: A Billion Dreams

Sachin-Tendulkar-young

Picture Courtesy: http://www.mid-day.com/articles/december-11-1988-rajdeep-sardesai-on-sachin-tendulkars-big-ranji-debut/240636 

I was on a rampage with my perfect mango margarita(s) while S and I were discussing cricket yesterday. He was playfully describing his love for Dhoni along with his brilliance as a Cricket Captain of India.

I say to him that I am not an expert, in the matters of cricket, merely because of the lack of interest. However, I do remember, that in 2003, when I got my first period, India was playing with Australia for the World Cup finals. I remember how nervous I was, while the whole household of Ajmer was equally buzzed with the electric current of it. How we used to bet with our household help Pappu, on how many runs Sehwag will score.  I remember, I used to glue myself on the lucky spot, not moving for hours, fearing that someone might get out, if India was batting. We had bribed all sorts of Gods and Goddesses with a variety of monetary and personal sacrifices, and yet, with all the moh-maya, India lost that year. Australia won the world cup.

India vs Pakistan cricket match was a different story all together. I was emotionally indifferent towards the political rivalry because I had little idea regarding the politics. All I knew, that when India played against Pakistan, it was like a crawl of emotions beneath your skin, threatening to rip you apart. My grandfather who had fought Indo-Pak war(s) in his time, would shout at the top of his lungs when it was a sixer by our boys. Everything stopped for a while. If you go to a shop, the match would be playing on the TV muted in the background. If the vegetable vendor came, the radio would be blaring on top of the eggplant pile. Emotions were always raw. Like someone has awakened something within you, a dormant beast, even within a 14 year old or younger. Goose bumps were common and your whole family including your grandmother-who had more idea of batting averages btw than you did- were all gathered in front of that meagre TV set, that you tied your hopes with. Everything was nail-biting. Your heart thumped and fingers crossed, you would watch that cricket match where all your patriotism poured out as hot lava. If India lost, India burnt in despair. Fans would walk on the streets and burn posters of the cricketers. If India won, crackers could be heard all around, and India burnt in happiness.

Years later, I walked into the theater to watch Sachin: The Billion Dreams expecting a pure commercial potluck that M.S. Dhoni: The Untold Story and Azhar had delivered in the past. Though I was purely entertained by both of them, I was reluctant to get inside the theater where clarifications were done and misunderstandings were sorted out or a love story twist.

So when I entered the theater this time, with no research done on my end, I was slurping away my Fanta to glory. I had no intention whatsoever to take back home melancholy or nostalgia that the game usually brewed inside me. But, by watching Sachin and the rest of the Tendulkars, I was mystified. Imagine my surprise, that I was not watching any shaped up Bollywood star enacting Sachin, but Sachin himself. Spanning a career from 1989-2012, I just did not understand what drove this man. He talks about his love for his family, the love for cricket, the love for his father and all the great loves of his life. In the end it became apparent that the mere desire of achieving a World Cup, bullied this man to insanity and back. Well, he did achieve his World Cup in 2011. I think I was falling in Love, with him.

The first half was routine, childhood stories and mischief of the bundle of joy. Little enactments, but mostly a well blended collection of home videos and interviews with his closest. The Little Master was just 16 when he made his International debut vs Pakistan. Sachin looked like a neighborhood kid supporting a brazen moustache of puberty, displaying humility. The film touches his meeting with Anjali, and how the 5 years older spouse played enormous role in his career. Sachin was just 22 when he married Anjali, a MD in Pediatrics who was 27 at the time. There was no drama. Still going strong after 22 years of marriage, Sachin restores my belief in the institution ( by a small margin).

Fanta untouched, the second half enters post the death of Sachin’s father- Ramesh Tendulkar. It shows, merely a journey of chasing a wild dream. The dream, of holding the world cup despite physical misgivings. You can see Shane Warne, Sourav Ganguly, Harsha Bhogle and many others describing him as a man with immense talent. Undeniably, there is a larger consensus, that Sachin is the man he is today because of his talent and HARDWORK! Apparently, that is why his career spanned for over two decades while people came and went…

With the hope that Arjun Tendulkar, Sachin’s son, may play for India one day, the movie concludes with Sachin’s¬†last match. One cannot hope to imagine, what Arjun will be up against- a lifetime of battle with his father’s legacy OR creating his own along the way.

In the end, I walked out of the theater, yearning to watch a cricket match with Sachin playing live at¬†the Wankhede Stadium. Alas, I cannot go back in the time machine and strike an item off my bucket list. Sachin’s dream was rightfully dreamt by us billion, and he and I and you, all could dream it to live it!

 

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The Love:Living in United States of America…

If you had been my faithful readers all along, you may realize that I do not shy away from the topic. It has been a roller coaster ride for me regarding love, with heartbreaks and heartaches. I have been in love, and sadly out of love as well. My depression  post breakup was an overkill, in brief.

It happened in United States, where I knew that the followup “getting-back-together” calls would mean nothing more¬†than me being in the gutter once again. I cried my heart out and spoke to whomever that would listen that I am heart broken. I wanted to beg to the almighty above, that time should stop, that I needed to breathe, that I needed time to heal. I wanted to fall off the grid and become a monk, because for me this life was baseless. I started seeing my life in an alternate reality, parallel to my own. I would pity myself, and I would victimize myself. I had stopped looking at myself in the mirror, I loathed my face, my body, my whole being. However, the struggle reached its epitome when I could not sleep. I would close my eyes and hear the world sleep and get up again, when all this time I was wide awake. Finally, sun would hit the horizon and my body’s turmoil would reach an epiphany, and I could sleep for an hour or two if the days were good. It went on for months.Till now, after almost 2 years, when I have those nights when I cannot sleep, I completely and honestly lose it. My family, several continents away, did not know what their daughter was going through. I never told them, but I still ask myself, should I have taken the help?

I am currently staying with a girl, who ¬†is lovely and who spoke up about her love life. Rummaging through people’s profiles on shadi.com, she says that some people who register there do not intend¬†to marry. They are browsing instead of swiping left and right on Tinder. She mentions very jovially how she had been rejected in the past on the basis of her weight, her visa status, her skin color, and so on. She mentions the double standards of the candidates, who would be living in with someone and would still seek out “a marriage material” partner. She mentions about handsome guys, who have wives back in India and they still try to solicit with women for “fun” in United States. She talked about her previous room mate, who was sleeping with a guy up until one day before she was about to fly home. She was going home to get married to another man, the more stable one. She asked me today what do I see in a man before I commit. Without waiting for a beat, I replied, “Quality”. To which she asked again, “How do you ensure that the man is of quality?”

How?

Not a long time ago, I had met a friend of a friend, and he seemed interested. He had good qualifications and a great way of talking. He was smart, funny and courteous. He met my room mate and I met his friends, and things were fine. We also had some common friends, and I enquired diligently about his background, which never raised any red flags. When I asked him directly about his relationship status, he said he was single. The only time I felt uncomfortable was when his married friend (who was also his colleague) would always insist to hang out with us. We will be going for a movie, and I would find ourselves waiting for the other friend, also a woman. We will be going out for a dinner, and the other friend would be with us whipping out Groupon coupons. Those were the things¬†that bothered me, but I would eventually learn to ignore. I wanted the things to be slow. Lo and behold one day, when my “good on the paper” lad came to pick me up. Drunk to bits he mentioned that he had a wife back in Houston, which he married for Green Card. The wife and him were not getting along and were separated. By the way, the other married friend that busted our so called dates on many occasions, was his current sleeping partner. I had too much self respect to ask him, “So, who was I?”

On the other hand, relationships do work, but along the hinges of our visa status. One of my mentors, a strong woman, was living in with her boyfriend. Both her and the BF work full time for massive companies. Things were usual. The BF had the work visa, but the girl-my friend was yet to receive one. So on a day when her company told her to pack her bags and leave the country, she complied. She will leave behind her love, her life, her dreams behind . She will leave behind the security of being loved by a man. She will leave behind her faith in the system. When S tells me that he wants to shift to the other country for his further education, I go berserk. In a time, when finding a decent guy feels¬†like a mirage ¬†in the desert, when falling in love and staying in love is a lot of hard work and when you finally begin to trust the other person with yourself and your car,¬†the other person’s visa status comes into the picture, along with your own visa status. Trivial and strenious.

But I ain’t stopping smiling, aren’t I?

The 4 letter word. LOVE ‚̧ԳŹ


Fin

Note to the reader:This article is the second one in the series. If you are here by chance, I recommend the first  one The Loss:Living in United States of America.

Lets talk about Love <3


(PS: Picture taken by yours truly on the middle of the road around 3 years ago)

PPS: I did not want to talk about Bra Dystopia anymore…)

In the dreary mist of the morning due, I figure that the most dreaded 4 letter word has somehow become a luxury. A necessary luxury.

We love the idea of ‘Love’. We absolutely adore the fact that we will have somebody for the rest of our lives. We have somehow associated our minds with the thought that “Love is everlasting”. Well what if Love isn’t?

What if the pressure on Love is so much, that it crumbles under our expectations?

We place so much importance on the feeling of Love, that lack of the consistency of the mere ‘feeling’ leads us to break our relationships. Love is like wine, it tastes better with time but it does not guarantee long lasting intoxication. We are so drunk with the whole idea of falling in love and then being in love, that we feel guilty if we perceive something else. We feel judgmental about couples who aren’t in love anymore but choose to stay together. We feel nauseous¬†when¬†your friend comes to you and announces that she is bored of her long time partner.¬†We feel so trapped in our own relationships sometimes that when the other person says, “I love you”, you feel almost compelled to say, “I love you too…” ¬†even if you don’t feel like you do. We all want to maintain a fairy tale, dancing with romance , making love on heart shaped beds, champagne¬†oozing¬†and rose petals¬†falling on you from nowhere. We want to be the Prince of the fairytale sweeping¬†our Princess off¬†her feet. We want to be the Princess,¬†being woken by a kiss from a¬†handsome prince. We want to feel alive and wanted. We want to feel special and pampered. We want to feel treasured and romanticized with long letters, flowers, vacations and I do’s.

Does that constitute Love at all?