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Geek by profession, thinker/writer/artist by passion. Part-time blogger,social media enthusiast and a tramp by nature :) A Man Of Mud


Saturday, January 24, 2015

Birdman : Smashing The Fourth Wall

I have long been votary of the idea that movies are new books and include finest literature, politics, philosophy and science of our time. Two recent movies I have seen, reinforce my belief further. Ironically, these are the only new movies I have seen in a long time -  Interstellar and Birdman. While a single post on Interstellar would be grossly inadequate, a review of Birdman has to be brief.  Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) by director Alejandro González Iñárritu and starring Michael Keaton, Naomi Watts, Edward Norton, Emma Stone, Zach Galifianakis  and Andrea Riseborough is a dark comedy about a washed up actor whose career has been in a downward spiral after his role as the iconic superhero "Birdman" and who is now trying to resurrect his career by directing and acting in a Broadway play.

This also is my first movie review, I have written on movies before but they can be considered post-reviews, attempts to understand the underlying meanings (my bunch of posts on Interstellar are pending in the drafts folder). So why do I attempt to review Birdman?  Because it's a new kind of movie, the most innovative part of it for me is, while some movies have tried breaking the fourth wall (technique of addressing the audience directly)  Iñárritu and the crew smash the fourth wall in Birdman. It involves the audience completely by not providing any explanations, events unfold on the screen as a single 119 minutes shot of the delusional protagonist trying to make sense of his life through art.  It is not just a black comedy, in truth it's a multi-layered narrative, the screenwriters and the director leave it to the viewer to understand it as they wish to. So my interpretation cannot be right or wrong, it can only be subjective.

Posted By danish Ahmed 4:34 AM

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Ancient Indian Astronauts Assault on Indian Heritage

7th Century Mathematician
Were the ancient astronauts aliens from another galaxy or our ancestors in space suits heading towards another planet amongst whose inhabitants they would be known as their ancient astronauts ?  May be it is both, may be neither. The previous statement is quite consistent with ancient Indian philosophy which had place for every strain of thought, even the seemingly contradictory ones. This gave abundant space for inquiry and assimilation of new ideas.  Over the last few centuries this space was being gradually eroded by dogmatism, today it seems we are regressing. Are efforts to gain respect for Hindu Nationalism leading to embarrassment of genuine contributions of ancient Indian Civilization ? Should we be gloating about ancient aviators which cannot be proved or about Brahmagupta, the first mathematician to use zero as a number and who laid down rules for a number of mathematical calculations.

Posted By danish Ahmed 12:56 AM