Ustad Hotel – To Grandfather With Love

Ustad Hotel is a special film for a number of reasons. While all of us have something that we like, I’d like to talk about my personal connection to the film. In many ways, the film is about the bond between a grandfather and his grandson. This is the aspect of Ustad Hotel that appealed to me the most. From a very young age, I have been very close to my grandfather and seeing the bond between Dulquer and Thilakan filled me with so much joy.

There are a lot of themes that the film touches upon including Sufism, Altruism and the role that food plays in our lives. But this relationship is the beating heart of the film for me. Without the bond between Faizi and Kareem Bhai, the story wouldn’t move the way it does. Any scene with the two can be picked out and looked at but I have chosen one that is quite close to my heart.

vlcsnap-2019-06-02-12h32m04s890

It is the scene they share on the beach where Kareem Bhai teaches Faizi the importance of love in any aspect of life. Seeing this scene brings back so many memories of time spent with my grandfather. Listening to old Hindi songs, making tea at midnight after watching a cricket/football match are all moments that come flooding back when I see Faizi and Kareem Bhai. The black tea or ‘Sulemani’ that they have encompasses all that the grandfather wants to teach his grandson.

This refers to the fact that we must include a little bit of love in whatever we do as that is what it makes anything better. I’m not totally sure if I have said something about Ustad Hotel in a coherent manner but sometimes that’s the way emotions work. They take hold of you and make you feel even when you don’t want to. I would like to thank Anjali Menon for writing a story that will forever be etched in my heart and mind.

Until next time, bye.

The Beauty Of Company

One of the best things about an Anjali Menon film is the way in which she is able to portray different relationships. This is is evident in all the films that she has written or directed. In Koode as well, we get to see a variety of people and the different relationships that they have. This is what the film focuses on and also, I feel that it comments on one of the worst feelings that a person can have: loneliness. None of us like to feel that way and it is always nice to have someone by our side. It does not matter if we haven’t spoken to them in years, all that matters is the here and now. The film also touches on the ways in which two people can drift apart not because of anyone’s choosing but as a result of circumstances. Koode is the kind of film that lingers after you have seen it. It will grow on you the more you think about it.

koode2

For me, just getting to see three of my favorite actors share the screen was enough to make me happy. The film is written in such a way that at no point, do you feel that the emotions are being forced. Though both Nazriya and Parvarthy did really well, the film belongs to Prithviraj. He is able to bring out every emotion of Joshua with an honesty that makes us look beyond the actor playing the role. Koode is not just a film that is beautiful to see but it feels beautiful as well. You start rooting for the characters as they tug at your heartstrings but make sure to leave a smile on your face. I don’t think this film should be compared to Anjali Menon’s earlier films but should be viewed for what it is. A visual poem to soothe the soul and be an antidote to all the harshness that may be around us.

Until next time, bye.