29 July 2008

Cuil (pronounced cool)

My Verdict: Not So Cuil….

Cuil (a Gaelic word for Knowledge), is the new search engine on the block with an aim to kill Google, the Goliath. And this may not exactly be the David-wins story. Goliath wins hands down.

The UI of Cuil indeed lives upto its name, and the results format are also cool. But It fails where it can never afford to. The Content. A Search in Google vs Cuil format led to a 392 results vs none , reflecting the sad state of affairs at Cuil. Cuil may claim that it indexes more pages than Google, but the cached section of Google is something Cuil cannot contend with.

The team behind Cuil are former Google employees, and if I can say anything, I’ll say you can never write them off. There is no smoke without fire, and I only hope they haven’t run out of tricks yet.

Another valiant attempt, and sadly, looks like another failure.

25 July 2008

The Dark Knight - Ten out of ten

Indeed the darkest Batman flick yet. Christopher Nolan can pat himself on the back and say Prestige was no lucky break. This man can indeed stun the audience every single time!

I had heard enough about the Joker before I actually saw the movie. “I have never seen such a terrifying villain before..” “You say Darth Vader’s the best?(followed by a wide grin)”… “Damn, was he psychotic!... You should see it to believe it!” And more of that.

I really love The Joker’s character in the Batman Comics, primarily because he chooses to play mental games with his adversaries. And the psychotic bank robber was on top of my expectations list. Next came in two-face, better known as Harvey Dent. (I am this villain fan, yes, more a fan of Darth Vader than anything on the planet). Batman came in third. I had no idea which part of the comics was being covered, except for the rise of two face, which I’ve read a lot of times before. So, to put it short, I expected a brilliantly executed movie, with a regular batman-saves-the-day storyline, a lot of action scenes, car chases and yes, a lot of mind games.

Enter PVR. Like the guy on IBNlive said, “this was the kind of movie giant screens were invented for”. The first row, unfortunately, but trust me, I neva knew the difference. I was living in Gotham for the next two hours and half !

“SPOILER ALERT!” – Yes, I need to add this. If you haven’t seen the movie yet, don’t sit here reading reviews ! Get going !

The Opening Scene, and I became a Joker fan for life. The way he planned the bank robbery was top notch, and the way one robber kills another in a kind of relay was again top draw. Out of the six clown-masked robbers, just two remain at the end. One doubts the intentions of the mastermind of the robbery (known only as the Joker), and points the gun at the other and says, "I'm bettin' The Joker told you to kill me soon as we loaded the cash..." The other replies calmly, “No I kill the Bus driver…..”

The first gets confused, “What Bus Driver???”

A Crash, and the bus enters through the wall. (I almost stood up and clapped then..) The Height of planning, if there ever can be one!

The bus smashes the first robber.

The other person dutifully kills the bus driver and reveals himself to be the Joker…

Doesn’t sound so good uh? You got to watch it fellas!!! Height of Execution!

This scene was the sign of things to come, and the cat and mouse game to follow, the dialogues, wow!

I've got no words. This was one movie where everyone in the theatre wanted the villain to win.

But for the namesake-show-of-handsomeness, the amazing skyscraper dive and the toooootally amazing Nose-diving-truck scene, Christian Bale did not have much to do as Batman, and I’d call it talent wasted! We all know what he is capable of!

Aaron Eckhart comes up with a stellar performance, both as Harvey Dent and Two-Face (though the latter did not have much of a part to play). And I’d go so far as to give it an Oscar nomination for an actor in a supporting role… Rachel Dawes was also scope & talent wasted.

I would have cut Nolan with words for wasting so much talent in the movie, but hell who cares, We had the Joker, and every other character had to make way for him and lose their scenes, including Batman… The Intro, the way he sets up the people on the two boats, all those fantastic dialogues and I MUST mention the way he walks out of Gotham General Hospital in that nurse dress…. Totally Awesome! The way he turns around to see some part of the hospital intact and checks his remote trigger… whoa man, Ledger must have lived the Joker! The much debated posthumous Oscar for the best actor, yes, I vote for that! (Note: not the supporting actor.. but for the central role.. The best actor!)

The Agent of Chaos ruled the movie, and how!

The BatMobile, The new two wheeled rocket, yes yes, they are all good, but I really didn’t think it’d stand a chance against the scheming Clown, and yes, I was right.

The only point is that Nolan could have bettered this best performance in the way Joker was caught in the end. I guess he wanted to say that the Joker could be caught in the end only because people in the right sense of mind decide not to blast the other boat out. But, we’ll never know…

One movie where everything is perfect, be it the storyline, be it the execution, be it the technicalities. A Great movie to hit the screens, after a long long time, both technically and by entertainment quotient.

I salute Ledger, I salute the Joker, and he’s definitely the second best villain of all time, if not first, and the only one comparable to the Darth Vader in the history of World Cinema. (ya, you would bring in the Silence of the lambs, but this is MY opinion, and no other villain is anywhere near the Clown and Anakin).

On top of IMDB, and deservedly at that.

And to all those who shout "this doesn't deserve it !"..... Why So Serious? :)

08 July 2008

Goal of life

I simply wonder why we lack
People who laugh..
People who live..

I also wonder why the heck
People feign friendship..
People speak lies.

As we grow from three to thirty
Time goes on..
Pressure mounts on..

Hard to believe that all were once
Children who played,
Ones who forgave.

Why should the child in us so vanish
The Smile in us fades,
The truth degrades..

Why should the childishness be banished
To the depths of the soul,
In life, Is that our goal?

To survive without living?