Tuesday, February 28, 2012

The Problem With Tamil Movies

I am a fan of some good Tamil movies but I am also at a state of disgust for some. People often tell me "ala, Tamil movie just leave your brains at home and go watch" and I am like why should I? I think it is critical for me to use my brain especially to make logic sense of some of the scenes in the movie. For one, I often kill my neurons figuring out why is there a song out of no where and how does one person take on a whole village of parang* wielding mad men?

My wife once told me that Hollywood makes something impossible look possible and in Bollywood/Kollywood** they make even the possible look impossible. That was indeed a very good assessment by my dear wife. This assessment can be put to test by taking the example of the movie Armageddon and the rest of the 100 000 Tamil movies. In Armageddon, a group of roughnecks are sent to an asteroid to blow it up by using nuclear devices before it devours the earth... sounds plausible. It may be impossible but still sounds like a plan. In a Tamil movie, you can instantaneously make a car leap into the air to avoid a road block. I have tried numerous times to pull my steering wheel upwards to try and make my car do at least a wheelie let alone make it fly but to no avail. Another annoying scene in a Tamil movie is when they blow up vehicles, it always flies 300 feet into the air. To you Tamil movie buffs, that unfortunately isn't true. When a car blows up, it does not fly, it just flings shrapnel in every direction where I wish a crap Tamil movie director would be in its way!

One Tamil movie that everyone loved including my parents was Vinnai Thandi Varuvaaya (or shortened to VTV). In my honest point of view, the movie was absolute crap and thank god my wife shared the same view. Sorry to burst your bubble but in the movie where they depict the hero being in love and all that other crap was nothing but lust! All Simbu*** wanted to do was to touch the girl and get into her pants. There I said it. I hated the movie despite all the hype about it. I cheekily included this paragraph in this article because I needed some avenue to vent out the frustration I have for this movie.

I also have wondered how does one dodge bullets better than Superman! All you have to do is see the bullets coming at you in slow motion and duck. Padaiyappa is a good example of this. Remember the last scene; Ramya Krishnan shoots toward Rajini and he just moves aside and the bullets miraculously miss him. Dude, that's a bloody AK47; one just does not escape its wrath by ducking. In the same scene, Rajini hurls a Vel**** in the direction of a raging bull which superbly lands itself upright in front of the bull causing it to immediately apply a disc brake on all fours. Seriously, why would I not be raging mad like the bull when I see scenes like that. It rebels against my intelligence. I paid good money for the movie.

There are also Tamil movies that have copied so many English movies and made it look bad. I pity the original screenwriters, directors and producers of the English movies that have had their movie massacred by giving it a Tamil twist. An example of such movie was Pachai Kili Muthucharam which is a copy of Derailed. The copy was not so bad in the beginning but towards the end of the movie they added the Tamil Masala to it, where Sarath Kumar had to battle the boss version of Jothika! The scene was absolutely uncalled for and killed the movie.

Don't get me wrong guys, I don't really hate Tamil movies through and through but a majority of the movies out there defy logic and it is disturbing. Some of you guys may say, don't watch it but hey, there have been some good movies especially from director Venkat Prabhu and a handful of other young directors. So the problem is, I do not know what I am in for until I have watched the movie. In most cases I end up with a facepalm and contemplate suicide by the end of the movie. I do get a kick out of the absurdity in these movies as it helps my constipation because I laugh till I shit. What Tamil movies need right now is to get rid of all those old directors who think masala sells and instead promote the young directors who have bright ideas and PLEASE FOR GOD'S SAKE, GET RID OF SONGS IN THE MOVIE! I do not want to see any idiots break out in a flashmob several times in a film!

*Parang = Standard Tool used to hack people to death in Tamil movies and in real life. Otherwise known as a machete

**Bollywood/Kollywood = North Indian and South Indian version of Hollywood respectively.

***Simbu = A totally untalented South Indian actor who thinks the world of himself

****Vel = A spear held by Lord Muruga but sometimes given to actors who the Indian people regard as god. An atrocity, I know.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

View from Gobos Bar & Grill, Traders Hotel

Taken at Gobo Upstairs Lounge & Grill

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

A take on ABU

My writing today will be in reference to or rather an inspiration by RPK’s article called Imagine located here: http://www.malaysia-today.net/mtcolumns/no-holds-barred/47219-imagine. Before I move on, I would like to place a disclaimer that this article is based on my views and I do not in any way have the experience that RPK has and this is not a reply or a challenge to it. My views are typically from a layman’s point of view. I have rarely commented on Malaysia Today because some would just refuse to agree to disagree and would take the topic totally off tangent. Today, I am willing to take the risk and be criticized or challenged on my blog but please let it be in a civilized manner.

In RPK’s article, he mentioned that Anything But UMNO (ABU) campaign is questionable because it speaks about voting in PR or I believe even independent candidates blindly without having to consider if the candidate does a good job or what they preach is pure hogwash. RPK also mentioned that he supports Anything But Corruption (ABC) which is a good point however, if there is corruption in a ruling government how do we support ABC? It will be a never ending battle because there is no guarantee that there will be no corruption. The candidate may be clean but what about the policies and ideologies of the ruling government which will be endured by the general population. How would we be able to make sure that we have good policies which are aligned to the rakyat’s benefit? Can the candidates go against the central working committee (CWC) If they are not happy with the policies? I am not saying corruption is fine; it is not but, it is punishable so find the culprits and put them away. Policies and new acts that burden the rakyat is what we need to be worried about because once passed, we the people have to deal with it.

The ABU campaign is looking beyond corruption in my honest opinion. It looks at the governance of the opposition or whichever non-BN candidate that will be contesting in the next GE. There were also comments from other bloggers who said if PR takes over then they will do whatever it takes to win the next GE as well. I honestly think that if PR does a bad job, it will be easier to kick them out because of their area of focus. Their focus when they take over will be to try and stick to their promises (they need to impress the people) and 5 years isn’t a long time to have those policies implemented let alone purge some of the archaic laws. It is only after those 5 years and beyond if they are still in power is when we have to be extremely critical of their moves and make sure they do not get complacent.

This is just something that came to mind when I read RPK’s article and as I have mentioned before, I am not challenging anyone but I do welcome your point of view. 

I also can be found on Twitter: @vixstarrNS

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Beautiful #Penang (Pictures) - Pt 2 - Kek Lok Si Day and Night Shots

Now presenting you with the second part of my CNY holiday in my hometown of Penang. If you missed the first part, find it HERE.

The second day of my le tour de Penang took me to Air Itam where the famous Kek Lok Si or also commonly known as Pagoda is. I remember going there as a kid when they were doing some renovations and it looked huge. Now when I visited it again, it still looks huge *troll face*.

My wife and I went in the evening and I was a little bit disappointed because I was under the impression that it would be closing soon but I was far from correct. It was Chinese New Year season and the temple is opened till late. I got some wonderful day and night shots. The night shots especially are my favourite and I have shared them below.

All pictures have been shot using a Nikon D3000 (aku amateur lah, DSLR entry level pun jadi). The night shots were also taken without a tripod so, kalau nampak shaken sikit...sorry ya :D

Please click the pictures for a bigger view.

I can be followed on Twitter: @vixstarrNS

Kek Lok Si as seen from Ayer Itam town

The pathway filled with shops right up to the temple

Ayer Itam town - Taken from the temple


A view of Georgetown from the temple

I have no idea if these were for sale!

The Pagoda - The whole temple was decorated with Tang Longs

The Buddha

Lower Temple

The Intricate Design of the Roof

More Tang Longs

Towards Dusk

I Had to Get a Shot of the Joss Sticks

Part of the Temple

I Like This Shot

I Love Taking Shots Like This

Can Someone Educate Me on the Three Buddhas

Kek Lok Si at Night - Apparently there are 10 000 Lights

Portrait Mode

More Night Shots

This Way Please

Remember the Lower Temple - This is How it is at Night

Another View

Tang Longs Lined Up

Mini Pagoda

Why Not?!

Saturday, February 11, 2012

KFC - The Chicken Saga

I was really contemplating whether to write this article or not then I thought harder and decided to write it anyway but to keep this short and simple. This article is merely based on my own opinions and is not intended to influence anyone.

The reason why I chose to write the article is because from now until the general elections, I am going to be critical of Pakatan Rakyat. Most of my articles have been critical of them because I have admitted that I will vote for them and do not want to feel like I made a mistake when I have already voted.

Moving on to the subject, the video shows the customer getting assaulted by the KFC workers but we do not exactly know what transpired before the incidents. We are hearing only one side of the story so far and really, this should have been a non issue. The only reason why I am writing this is because it got politicized and that too by one of the PR parties.

First of all, the victim should have lodged a police report regardless of evidence. If your house gets robbed and you do not have a CCTV to prove that things were stolen, do you just avoid making a police report because you cannot prove it fearing that the police may say that you broke into your own house and are making up stories for the fun of it? That is how the scenario looks like to me. It does not matter if the police tells you that don't make a report because we're 1Malaysia or whatever. If you believe you have been violated, you have the right to make a report and you cannot be denied that right.

DAP should not have gotten involved in the matter. If the victim came to them, they should have just helped the victim make a police report and be hush, hush about it instead of calling for a press conference and that too in Mandarin which even for me was irritating because I cannot understand. Speak lah in Bahasa Malaysia (it annoys me when Malaysians who were born and bred here cannot speak the National Language); at least others can comprehend. I know the victim has mentioned that this is not a racial issue but a customer service issue but it should have been done in a smarter way because now the case has brought even more undue attention. However, I do respect the fact that the victim has called to not make this a racial issue.

I honestly wish this will be settled amicably and I really feel DAP should distance itself from now and if they would like to honestly help, do it in the background and shut up about it. As a voter, I really want to see the party that I am voting into as a fair and non biased party.


Monday, February 06, 2012

Beautiful #Penang (Pictures) - Pt 1 - Teluk Bahang Dam & End of the World

My recent trip for the Chinese New Year Holidays took me back to my hometown of #Penang. The holidays coincided with my birthday and wedding anniversary (celebrated slightly earlier). Although my wife and I planned to go to Thailand for a couple of days but we decided to call it off as it was too much of a hassle especially with the little one because we would have to leave him with my in-laws or my parents which we were not comfortable as we were not too sure if he would be okay without us for two days. So we decided to spend the holidays in Penang as there were some places that we had not visited.

Note: If you would like to skip the yada, yada, yada that follows in this article, please scroll right down to the pictures :)

The trip was indeed worth it as we managed to explore some places that we had visited as kids and have long forgotten and also some places that we have not been at all; Penang is a big place you know :).

On the first day we took a round the island trip starting from Bayan Baru via Relau to Balik Pulau and from Balik Pulau to Batu Ferringhi. Along the way we made stops at Balik Pulau town which is on the west coast of the island and is not as developed as the east coast where Georgetown is. There, we visited a small temple that my family used to frequent as I was in my pre-teens-teens. After a short stop there, we continued to use the road from Balik Pulau to Batu Ferringhi. We stopped by Pantai Acheh which is a small fishing village on the west coast. Then, we continued to drive and finally ended up at the Teluk Bahang Dam which is about 15KM from Balik Pulau. The distance is short but it goes through a windy road with deep ravines and fruit orchards. For Durian lovers, this is the road you take! The dam brought back a lot of memories for my wife and I as that is where we used to "Pak Toh" when we were courting. I hold a special place in my heart for the dam as it was not only our dating spot but also a place during my college days where my college mates and I used to hang out and chat until late!

Once we were done with the dam, we drove further down the road for about 3KM to the "End of the World". The place is called such because it is at the northern tip of the island and it opens up to an open sea. I have been there before a long time ago but today, there are Jetties which extend quite far out into the ocean. I have a fear of heights and deep water therefore, I was very careful whilst walking on the jetty which was built on stilts and also the pathway was very narrow. I got some good photos from there as well which I have shared below.

The "End of the World" is also the starting point to track to beaches like Pantai Acheh, Pantai Kerachut and Monkey Beach. This place has also been designated as the smallest Taman Negara (national park) in Malaysia. If you enjoy tracking, this is a place for you, if you track up to Pantai Kerachut, there is a meromictic lake which means that the lake has 2 layers of water that do not intermix and has different temperatures(google it up if lost :) ) The End of the World is also a haven for sea-food. Just go into the kampungs around the area and you will be greeted with the abundant amount of sea food shops.

After the visit to The End of the World, we continued to Batu Ferringhi for dinner and then headed back home to continue the next day for part 2.

The Windy Road I was Talking About - Teluk Bahang Dam

The Dam: Take A Walk Down Memory Lane -
Teluk Bahang Dam

I Have Gone Against All Rules Of Photography,
Shooting Against The Light - Teluk Bahang Dam

The Damn Dam! - Teluk Bahang Dam

One Of My Best Shots Yet. My Wife Staring Into The Sea -
End Of The World

The Jetty - End Of The World

More Of The Dam - Teluk Bahang Dam

Yet Some More Of The Dam - Teluk Bahang Dam

Road Trip - Teluk Bahang Dam